Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to
be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
(2 Timothy 2:15)
The Internet can be such a wonderful experience to those who are seeking
the truth in Christ Jesus. Even if we attend "church" with others and hear
something from the Pastor that doesn't ring true to the witness of the
Holy Spirit in our lives, we are not trapped in the denomination that we
follow by having to go to that same teacher, who we now have doubts about,
to explain something that the Holy Spirit seems to be showing us. We can
search the net until He witnesses to our spirit that the Truth has been
Unfortunately we all suffer from the sin which doth so easily beset us
and those who have teaching and preaching ministries are liable to fall
into the same traps of Satan as those in the various denominational churches.
Becoming increasingly aware of pride and a condemnatory attitude in my
life, many Scriptural passages were brought to the fore with the purpose
of learning humbleness once more, for it is the humble truth that God can
use and which men and women in Christ can discern.
It is with sadness that I learned a short while ago of a man, under whom
I've sat a few times, who was regarded as the epitome of what a servant
of Jesus Christ should be, who relied on God for the provision of the food
and clothing for him and his family for many years, who cast out demons
and experienced powerful miracles in his and the lives of others around
him, who recently used his reputation to make a rash statement, the facts
of which he could not have received from the Holy Spirit; and as a result
had to make a public apology to the world of Christendom when that statement
was evidently false. This man's witness was destroyed and he has become
the laughing stock of the mockers.
The Bible warns us about this very thing and all who are used by God must
remain aware of the truth of the old saying "with every privilege comes
a reciprocating responsibility."
Say no more than that which you are shown.
But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master,
even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your
father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither
be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. But he
that is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt
himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater
condemnation. For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in
word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle
the whole body. Behold, we put bits in the horses' mouths, that they may
obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which
though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds,
yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor
listeth. Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things.
Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! And the tongue is
a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it
defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and
it is set on fire of hell. For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and
of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of
mankind: But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full
of deadly poison. Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith
curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same
mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought
not so to be. Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water
and bitter? Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a
vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.
Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew
out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.
Dear reader, even though you may only witness by your words and actions
to those around you, these passages of Scripture apply to you as well.
What a privilege it is to be chosen as a servant of the Most High God,
Jehovah; and His Son, Christ Jesus. The realisation of the certainty of
this is staggering, not so.
Let us study to show ourselves approved, let us practice what we preach.
Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless
afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which
are exercised thereby. Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and
the feeble knees; And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which
is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed. Follow
peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see
the Lord: Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God;
lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby
many be defiled;
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men
liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask
in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the
sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he
shall receive any thing of the Lord.
Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried,
he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them
that love him. Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God:
for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every
man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then
when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished,
bringeth forth death. Do not err, my beloved brethren. Every good gift
and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of
lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. Of his
own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of
firstfruits of his creatures. Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every
man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man
worketh not the righteousness of God. Wherefore lay apart all filthiness
and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted
word, which is able to save your souls. But be ye doers of the word, and
not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew
out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. But if ye
have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against
the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly,
sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is
confusion and every evil work. But the wisdom that is from above is first
pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of
mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the
fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.
But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud,
but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist
the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw
nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your
hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let
your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness.
Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his
brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth
the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but
a judge. There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who
art thou that judgest another?
Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city,
and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: Whereas ye know
not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It
is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth
away. For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live,
and do this, or that.
Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him
it is sin.
Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and
envies, and all evil speakings, As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk
of the word, that ye may grow thereby: If so be ye have tasted that the
Lord is gracious. To whom coming, as unto a living stone,
disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious, Ye also,
as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to
offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. Wherefore
also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner
stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.
Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which
be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made
the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence,
even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto
also they were appointed. But ye are a chosen generation, a royal
priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth
the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous
(1 Peter 2:1-9)
Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; Having your conversation
honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers,
they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God
in the day of visitation. Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for
the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors,
as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and
for the praise of them that do well. For so is the will of God, that with
well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: As free,
and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as
the servants of God. Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear
God. Honour the king.
(1 Peter 2:11-17)
Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another,
love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering
evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing
that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. For he
that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from
evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do
good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. For the eyes of the Lord are
over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but
the face of the Lord is against them that do evil. And who is
he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and
if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid
of their terror, neither be troubled; But sanctify the Lord God in your
hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man
that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:
Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers,
they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.
(1 Peter 3:8-16)
There has been a spiritual expectancy for something more, and now, a fortnight
after the above was written, the disciple's chapter is included for our
edification and action.
Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have
obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and
our Saviour Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through
the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power
hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness,
through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby
are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these
ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption
that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence,
add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance;
and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness
brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things
be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be
barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he
that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten
that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give
diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things,
ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly
into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Wherefore
I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things,
though ye know them, and be established in the present truth. Yea,
I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by
putting you in remembrance; Knowing that shortly I must put off
this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me.
Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have
these things always in remembrance. For we have not followed cunningly
devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our
Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For he received
from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him
from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in
the holy mount. We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye
do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place,
until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this
first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men
of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
(2 Peter 1:1-21)
Someone once wrote:
God is looking for men on whom He can put the weight of all His love
and power and faithful promises. God's engines are strong enough to draw
any weight we attach to them. Unfortunately the cable which we fasten to
the engine is often too weak to hold the weight of our prayer; therefore
God is drilling us, disciplining us to stability and certainty in the life
of faith. Let us learn our lessons and stand fast.
And Joseph said unto his brethren, Come near to me, I pray
you. And they came near. And he said, I am Joseph your brother,
whom ye sold into Egypt. Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves,
that ye sold me hither: for God did send me before you to preserve life.
For these two years hath the famine been in the land: and
yet there are five years, in the which there shall neither
be earing nor harvest. And God sent me before you to preserve you
a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance.
So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he
hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler
throughout all the land of Egypt.