The object of this series of lessons is that we may learn what the Word of God is and what blessings may come to us through it.
This statement and others that follow are from the lessons on God’s Word developed in the year 1892.
The lessons are intended for those who believe that the Bible is the Word of God.
Furthermore, they are designed to bring out and illustrate what it says about itself.
It is hoped, therefore, that they will enlarge the understanding and strengthen the faith of those who do believe.
We should have the same confidence in what the Word of God says about itself as in what it teaches upon any other subject.
Moreover, we should always remember that the Scripture is given to instruct our reason and not to be judged by it.
When the matter is viewed properly, the mysteries of the Bible are among the strong proofs that it is the Word of God.
Our attitude should always be – Speak, Lord, for thy servant heareth. 1 Samuel 3:10.
Furthermore, our hearing should be with the purpose of yielding to it. God says that He looks to him who trembleth at His Word. Isaiah 66:2.
Questions on 1 Thessalonians 2:13
For this cause also we thank God without ceasing, because, when ye received the Word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the Word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.
- With what is the Word of God contrasted?
- How much difference is there between the two?
- What does the Word of God do?
- Upon what condition does it work?
- Does it make any difference how we receive the word? How much?
Questions on Isaiah 55:8-11
For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the Lord.
And as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.
For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater:
So shall My Word be that goeth forth out of My mouth: it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
- What are words intended to convey?
- How much difference is there between God’s thoughts and people’s thoughts?
- How much difference, then, will there be between God’s Word and people’s word?
- What definite results are produced by rain and snow?
- What comparison is made between these agencies and God’s Word?
- How must the word be received in order that it may accomplish such results?
Questions on Hebrews 4:12
For the Word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
- What characteristics of God’s Word are mentioned here?
- Are these true of people’s words? Show the difference quite fully.
Questions on John 1:1-4
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
The same was in the beginning with God.
All things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made.
In Him was life; and the life was the light of men.
- Who is meant by the Word ?
- Why is He called the Word?
- What is found in Him?
Paul knew whom he had believed:
For I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day. 2 Timothy 1:12.
He was aware that it made a great difference how the Word was received:
And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:
The difference between God’s Word and people’s word is just as great as the difference between God and people – it is simply infinite.
Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.
His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. Psalm 146:3, 4.
God’s Word works in those who believe it as God’s Word
Moreover the Word of the Lord is preached by the Gospel: The Word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the Word which by the Gospel is preached unto you. 1 Peter 1:25.
Nevertheless, it must be believed in order to be profitable: For unto us was the Gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it. Hebrews 4:2.
Humans put their own thoughts into words:
A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good;
and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh. Luke 6:45.
Thus what one person has clothed with language, another can study out and so exhaust one’s meaning.
Not so with God’s Word. His Words contain a depth of meaning which only His Spirit can reveal to us:
For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 1 Corinthians 2:11, 12.
For this purpose was the Spirit promised:
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. John 16:13.
But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. 1 Corinthians 2:10.
As rain and snow are sent upon the earth to accomplish definite results, so God sends His Word:
He sent His Word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destruction. Psalm 107:20.
The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. Matthew 8:8.
Men and brethren, children of the stock of Abraham, and whosoever among you feareth God, to you is the word of this salvation sent. Acts 13:26.
Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. James 1:21.
Moreover, it will accomplish this for all who receive it.
The land is made fruitful by receiving the rain:
For the earth which drinketh in the rain that cometh oft upon it, and bringeth forth herbs meet for them by whom it is dressed, receiveth blessing from God. Hebrews 6:7.
So God will cause righteousness to spring forth:
For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth;
so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations. Isaiah. 61:11.
When spoken faithfully the Word will have a powerful effect:
He that hath My Word, let Him speak My Word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat? saith the Lord.
Isn’t my word like a fire? saith the Lord; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces? Jeremiah 23:28, 29.
Furthermore, it is able to build up those who receive it:
And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the Word of His grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified. Acts 20:32.
Life and Spirit
The words of God are not only living words, but they are spirit and life, John 6: 63, to those who believe them.
Life belongs to everything associated with God
He has life in Himself: For as the Father hath life in Himself; so hath He given to the Son to have life in Himself. John 5:26.
Moreover, His throne is a living throne: Ezekiel 1.
Besides this we have the:
- word of life – Holding forth the word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain. Philippians 2:16
- breath of life – And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. Genesis 2:7
- bread of life – I Am that bread of life. John 6:48
- river of life – And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. Revelation 22:1
- tree of life – In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. Revelation 22:2.
The Word is the sword of the Spirit: And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Ephesians 6:17.
Christ is the Word of God
And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True…The Word of God. Revelation 19:11-13.
It is so because:
He spoke the Words of God:
- I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put My words in His mouth; and He shall speak unto them all that I shall command Him. Deuteronomy 18:18
- For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from Thee, and they have believed that Thou didst send Me. John 17:8.
He was a living proclamation to the world of the character of God:
- To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. 2 Corinthians 5:19
- He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Show us the Father? Believest thou not that I Am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak unto you I speak not of Myself: but the Father that dwelleth in Me, He doeth the works. Believe Me that I Am in the Father, and the Father in Me: or else believe Me for the very works’ sake. John 14:9-11.
Thus: Of His own will He begat us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures. James 1:18.
Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the Word of God, which liveth and abideth forever. 1 Peter 1:23.
The mystery of His incarnation
God with us, Divinity veiled in humanity and union of Divine and human manifests in Jesus’ incarnation and life.
Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Matthew 1:20, 23.
Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Philippians 2:6-8.
Likewise, the union of Divine and human exists also in the Bible.
The truths revealed are all given by inspiration of God, yet they are expressed in the words of humans and are adapted to human needs.
Thus it may be said of the Book of God, as it was of Christ, that the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.
Moreover, as Christ is a personal Savior, so God’s Word is given to each one as an individual.