TECHNOLOGY CONTINUES to change the dynamics of life including publishing. Paper-based systems in particular have developed into electronic systems. Literary works including God’s holy Word, the Bible, are in digital format today. It is on phones, ipads and computers today.
The Bible is the Word of God. But there is one thing we must understand about having the Bible. Most Christians have various versions of the Bible, and take them to church meetings. But a Christian who holds the Bible in his hand does not necessarily have the Word of God. It may seem he has it, but he truly does not.
God’s Word was not given merely to be held in one’s hand or kept at a bedside or on a table as if for decoration or to express religiosity. To have the Word of God is to have it dwelling in your heart. And to have the Word of God in your heart, and you living in it, is to be a Christian.
People are made Christians by having Christ in them, and by He having them in Himself. A Christian is a person in whom Christ dwells. That is why it is written, “…CHRIST IN YOU the hope of glory” (Colossians 1: 27). I mean we are made Christians by having the Word of God dwelling in us. Remember that Christ Jesus and the Word of God are one.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1: 1). “He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God” (Revelation 19: 13). The above scriptures speak about the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now, how does Christ Jesus come in us? To understand this question is to understand how people become Christians. Many Pastors teach that people become Christians merely by confessing with their mouths that Jesus is Lord and believing in their heart that God raised him from the dead, quoting Romans 10: 9.
But this teaching is superficial. Confessing Christ with your mouth and believing in His resurrection in your heart are based on the Word of God received in your heart through Spirit-inspired preaching. A person who has not heard and received the Word of Christ in him cannot believe in Christ in his heart and confess Him with his mouth to receive salvation.
Before the Apostle Paul taught about confessing Jesus with the mouth and believing in His resurrection in the heart in Romans 10: 9, he had earlier talked about the fact that, “The Word is near you, IN YOUR MOUTH AND IN YOUR HEART (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim)” in Romans 10: 8.
Exactly what am I saying? I am saying that we became Christians by hearing and receiving the Word of God called the word of faith, and through it believing in Jesus Christ. Paul explained this in another way in his letter to the church in Ephesus.
“In him also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory” (Ephesians 1: 13- 14).
To become a Christian, Paul says a person must first hear the word of truth which is also called the gospel of salvation, and by it believe in Jesus Christ before he can be sealed with the Holy Spirit. And God told Ezekiel to hear His Word with his ears, and receive it in his heart (Ezekiel 3; 10).
God’s Word is meant to dwell in our hearts. Paul told Christians in Colossae, “Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly… (Colossians 3: 16). All these teach us that the Word of God we have is what we have in our hearts.
When you own a big study Bible, and keep it in your house or just carry it to church meetings without spending adequate time to read it with meditation to have it dwell in your heart, your Christianity will be questionable. This is the major challenge facing most Christians today. Many of us claim to be Christians but we are unable to conform to the image of Christ. Christ is not tangibly seen in our lives. How sad! The problem is that we do not have the Word in us.
When a person hears the word of faith preached to him by an anointed minister, the seed of Christ forms in his heart. And the more he receives the Word of God in his heart the more Christ grows in him. This is why a daily reading or hearing of the Word of God with mediation is very important as a Christian. We must commit ourselves to eating God’s Word daily for the nourishment of our souls.
The Lord Jesus Christ said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God. God’s Word is food indeed; it is food for our spirit. If we visit the early believers who walked with God, they will teach us how often they ate the Word of God in order to have God reign and rule in their lives.
It is high time we stopped brandishing our Bibles for showmanship, and spent time to eat the Word daily to grow our inner man to conform to the image of Christ, and demonstrate the power of God in our homes, offices and communities. Get it right: To be with Christ Jesus is to be with the Word of God. I mean you cannot seek the face of God without feeding on His holy Word which is spirit and life.
FROM James Quansah, Kumasi