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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Does God Protect His Word (part 2)?

Psalm 19:7-9, "The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the judgments of the LORD are true; they are righteous altogether."

Isalm regards the writings of the prophet David in the Zabbur, The Psalms. David wrote that the law of the Lord, His testimonies, precepts, commandments, judgements are perfect, sure, wise-making, right, rejoice-causing, pure, light-bringing, enduring forever, true and righteous. If God's Word is corrupt, then God has not protected His word and the prophet David was wrong about God's Word being what it is.

"Hey, what a minute. What do you mean that David was a prophet. Wasn't he a shepherd and a king?"

Look at Peter's sermon in Acts 2:29-32, "'Brethren, I may confidently say to you regarding the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. And so, because he was a prophet and knew that GOD HAD SWORN TO HIM WITH AN OATH TO SEAT ONE OF HIS DESCENDANTS ON HIS THRONE he looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that HE WAS NEITHER ABANDONED TO HADES, NOR DID His flesh SUFFER DECAY. This Jesus God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses."

Since God does not change and He protects His Word (and what kind of God would He be if He did not protect His word?) the prophet David received God's unchanging word, a promise: "The LORD has sworn to David a truth from which He will not turn back: 'Of the fruit of your body I will set upon your throne.'" (Psalm 132:11. cf. Psalm 89:3). "When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, and I will establish his kingdom." (2 Samuel 7:12).

If God's did not protect His Word, then how could He keep His promise to David?

God's law, that is, what God teaches is perfect, without flaw. This means the soul must be converted, changed by what God teaches in His word. The only other alternative is to say that God's teaching is not perfect, which in turn implicates God as being a liar.

God's word is a witness, a testimony that is sure. This means that His word comes from authority and with authority and will not change. God's testimony is so confirmed, a pillar, foundational, established, verifiable, reliable, faithful, trustworthy, believable, that even the open-minded and the fool can understand.

The statutes, or precepts of the LORD are right. This means His orders, His governings, are clear and sensible. The one who directs life in accordance to what God has decreed will find cause for rejoicing. This is ethical, setting men free to do everything he should. His Word is divine order and when we follow it, the light "comes on." Maybe on a dimmer switch, but it does come on with so many "ah-ha!" moments that cause the face to shine!

Because God's Word is clean, pure, unmixed, unmatched, and unpolluted, it never will see and end. Therein is found perpetual and everlasting instruction for physical, ceremonial, ethical and moral purity. It lasts forever because it is part of Him, which implies that if it changes, then God must change and change can only be for the better or for the worse. And it can't get any better. The reality is that when put to use, we have a living manual for living worship. My friend and collegue, Dr. Larry Dixon, says "a closed Bible is but a block of paper."

God's unchanging and well-protected word delivers His righteous judgments. Disbelief Him and you are judged already. But why stop there?

"They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb." (Psalm 19:10)

If gold is the standard of all that is valuable and honey is the standard of all that is sweet (nothing is sweeter unless it is manufactured), then consider the value of God's Word. Why desire gold when there is something of greater value in what God has given already?

"Moreover, by them Your servant is warned; in keeping them there is great reward." (Psalm 19:11)

[read part 1 or go to part 3]

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