Rev'd Charles - October 2018

posted 30 Oct 2018, 01:55 by Richard Jones

View From the Vicarage



Do You Weed?


Excuse me?  Do you weed? Well that’s what a parishioner of ours thought he heard when having just moved into his new home a neighbour unexpectedly called. But when he replied yes, he did quite like gardening, she asked again, slightly exasperated with a lisp, no do you READ?! Oh yes he replied. Good she said, next Sunday in church, 1st Lesson! Well that certainly makes a change to the bouquet of flowers, freshly baked cake, helpful practical advice or simply an invitation to come round for a cup of coffee which we might normally hope to receive, but in fact it is a very good question. ‘Do you read – the Bible?’


You see, although it may be the world’s best seller it remains unread by the vast majority of people on this planet. But given the demands on our time and the attractiveness of other forms of communication why should we make the time to do this?


The answer the Bible gives is that it is God’s uniquely inspired Word (2 Timothy 3:10 -17). It is a practical love letter from our Creator. It is God communicating with us verbally and pointing us to Christ personally so that by responding to Him in faith and love we can be saved.


No wonder then that Abraham Lincoln (1809-65) could say “it is the best gift God has given to men” for “no one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates  in every word” (Albert Einstein 1879 -1955). Indeed when we read the Gospels we read what happened when divinity entered history (John 20:30 -31, Luke 1: 1 -4). Therefore “we owe to the Scriptures the same reverence which we owe to God “(John Calvin 1509 -64)) because for Jesus what the Scriptures said, God himself said (John 12:50, 2 Peter 1:16 -21).


So why is the Bible so important? Well the Bible is from God, about God and by God. It was written so that the love of God may be revealed, received and reproduced in us. In fact it is the Word of God that equips the people of God to do the work of God, so it is indispensable if we are to grow in grace and love for God.


That is why October 28 is designated as Bible Sunday and three of the Bible passages for that day include Psalm 19: 7 - 14, 2 Timothy 3: 14 - 4: 5 and John 5: 36 – 47. And what can help us in our daily Bible reading is making use of Bible reading notes such as Premier ‘Voice of Hope’ freely available to individuals and churches (01892 611180), United Christian Broadcasters ‘Word for Today’ (0845 60 40 401) or ‘Day by Day with God’  for women(Bible Reading Fellowship).


How richer our lives could be if we reached for our Bibles with the same regularity that we reach for our phones. For as Billy Graham (1928 -2018) once put it “unless the soul is fed and exercised daily it becomes weak and shrivelled. It remains discontented, confused, restless.” Or as Jesus Himself said, “If you obey and remain faithful to my teaching you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (John 8:31).


Charles

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