Living & active

 Introduction

 
Please if you have a Bible take it out and hold it up
If you do not have a Bible with you can I suggest that this can be a real help in getting involved in our times together.
 
So what versions of the Bible do we have?
 
King James
NIV
NASB
Amplified
Message
 
Here are some quotes from some Bibles printed over the years.
 
1653 Bible- “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall inherit the kingdom of God”
 
A Bible in 1810 was printed with the words
“If any man come to me and hate not his own wife , he cannot be my disciple”
 
How about this 1631 version of one of the Ten commandments
 
“Thou shalt commit adultery.”
 
In spite of these mistakes, the Bible has been translated into over 2000 languages and dialects and remains by far the most popular book, outselling everything consistently.
 
The Bible Society believes that the number of Bibles estimated to have been printed since such records were kept in the 1870’s is in the region of 6,000,000,000.
 
So what is the Bible to you?
 
For many of us the Bible is a place to go to for
 
  • Encouragement
  • Direction
  • Comfort
  • Assurance
  • Correction
  • Challenge
  • Hope
  • Instruction
  • Peace
  • Praise
  • Wisdom
 
It is not intended simply as a book to swear on or as a means to arrogantly reinforce a personal opinion. The Bible tells us that God’s Word is
 
Heb 4:12 “Living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
 
It is Living in that it remains relevant today; so much so that we named our Church after it- Living Word Community Church
 
The Community Church of the Living Word.
 
We believe it is living because God inspired the writers as he inspires us today to apply His word to our circumstances.
 
On one Sunday a month we try to look at how the word of God is reaching our world and whilst we have for a few months not deliberately focused on our missions, today as well as looking at the power of God’s word, to look at how it has gone into so many parts of the world and is Living their too.
 
The testimony of two girls from Kenya really provoked me again.
 
Maasai girls in a school in Kenya were asked what their favourite verse was.
“‘Blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted’” Matthew 5:4
One of them answered, “because I know that, however long I mourn, Jesus will eventually comfort me.”
“‘Jesus wept’” John 11:35
Said another, “because in the night, when I weep, I know that Jesus weeps with me.”
Both of them had lost both parents to AIDS.“ Jesus wept” is widely known as the shortest in the Bible, but this girl could see a deeper meaning. Jesus weeps with the AIDS orphans and comforts
 
The Word of God is Living across our world listen to this testimony from Papua, New Guinea
 
Slowly, Elale read Philippians 1:21– 23
from his well-thumbed copy of the
Kamula Epistles:
 
For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know!
I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body.
 
Then he looked up eagerly and said, “So it’s true! We don’t need to be afraid to die, because when we die we go to be with Jesus! We Kamula people have
always been afraid to die, but if we believe in Jesus, we don’t need to be! I’m going to read this to everyone and tell them!”
 
For the Word of God to live in our lives we need to know it read it study it.
 
Here are four stages in the study of God’s Word
 
  • Repetition-                 Gets it in there
  • Concentration-           Focus not distraction
  • Comprehension-       The Aaaah moment
  • Reflection-                  So what do I do with this?
 
We all look for change in our lives this reflection is when we gain an understanding of how the word of God can become Active in us
 
The Word of God is also Active
 
The Word of God is active in that it changes us.
 
Many people go to the word of God for counsel. Here are a few famous types who describe their favourite verse in particular circumstances.
 
“I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for
good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
Jeremiah 29:11
encouragement
Linvoy PrimusPortsmouth FC
“When I first became a Christian, this verse was sent to me by a supporter,
and as soon as I read it, I knew my future was taken care of.”
 
Can a mother forget her nursing child?
But even if that were possible, I would not forget you! See, I have written your name on my hand.
Isaiah 49: 15-16
 
Pam Rhodes
I find this verse so comforting! The thought that God knows, and has always known ME, warts and all! Nothing I think or feel or do is beyond his understanding or love.However poorly I may think of myself, he has always been there, constant and parent-like. He rejoices when I am everything he hopes I will be. He is beside me when things go wrong and there’s sadness and confusion. Because he’s constant, I can be human.”
 
TOP 5 VERSES5
“I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
Jeremiah 29:11
 
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will direct your paths.
Proverbs 3:5–6
 
Nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:38,39
 
God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.
John 3:16
 
I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
Philippians 4:13

 

Tim Blake, 14/03/2007