Vol. 3, No. 25 – June 24, 2018
They were entrusted with the oracles of God. Romans 3:2
Nothing causes an unfavorable reaction like spitting on, tearing up, or burning the Bible – at least for the Christian, religious, and the few unchurched that react.
Blood boils, tempers explode, men and women blow their fuses, and the entire world reacts according to their own juice flow. Historically empires have fallen; nations have been divided because of their treatment of God’s Word, the Bible.
The stronger the position held, the deeper the passions will flow.
Unfortunately, the deeper the passions flow, there is also a further point toward which arguments stray from objectivity. Paul had opponents that often used verbiage of the “politically correct” in his day. Listen to how the conversation would begin:
• How can you, Paul, possibly say that . . .?
• Are you trying to tell me/us . . .?
• What are you attempting to say, Paul?
• Did someone on the right wing water your brain?
In Romans 3:1-8, there are objections in the passage, along with answers.
These eight verses contain a red herring. You have heard that term; it means something used to divert attention from the basic issue. In hunting, it is the practice of drawing a smoked herring across the trail to distract the hounds. Thus it presents something that is not easy to understand.
Stuart Briscoe tells of a religious man who struggles with ritual without reality; privilege without perception; objections without objectivity. In the first century this is found in the battle for the Bible.
To be custodians of God’s revelation is a high honor; a privilege. This was the ancestral heritage of the Jews. The Lord’s pronouncements or utterances are called oracles; logia.
John Calvin called them: The treasure of celestial wisdom.
Those are God’s oracles and they are rock-ribbed. There are prophecies for mankind who sincerely want to know their future and how to make good choices for the days ahead. Yet mankind tends to use human reasoning or philosophy to determine what is in store:
The cut of the cards, the toss of the coin, the fall of the dice, the reading of tea leaves, the lines in the palm of the hand, the movement of stats, or the flight of the birds. Even logic is not on their side. I read an article just the other day depicting a woman living in England who “reads” feet to determine personalities. Talk about logic smelling — this is it!
Quite in contrast, and for Israel its great glory, is the possession of the revelation of God.
Possessing a Bible and not using it is like going on a long trip with a Road Atlas or a GPS, and not using them. You do not know where you are going to wind up.
If we gauge value, putting our stock into what we have learned from science, or our ability to earn lots of money, or in our social position, or vocational position, we will come to a place one day that we will wish we had read the map!
I had a professor in seminary who once spoke of the deep emotions of Alexander. Alexander south to conquer the then known world; however, he came to a place that all the maps ran out. He had no place to go. His maps were of no help; he had missed or ignored God’s map.
Our eternity depends on the Divine road map. God wants us to master the reading of His Book, and to be Mastered by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.
Love the Bible supremely; meditate upon it heartily; keep it faithfully; taste it wholly; understand it thoroughly; live by it resolutely; pray about it reverently, and set your heart upon the oracles of God continually. –F.E. Marsh
How are you doing with God’s Divine map? Do you have a passion for the Scriptures?