What's Scripture Got To Do With It?
By Buddy Hanson The Covenant News ~ May 21, 2010
Have you ever wondered why Christians insist that God's Word is true, then live as though it doesn't matter? As Christians, we agree that God's Word is true and is therefore our only trusted source for how to live, work, play, raise our families and self-govern ourselves. (2 Tim. 3.16) We also know that in order to bring honor to God with our lifestyle, we should "do all to the glory of God" (1 Cor. 10.31) by "holding fast the pattern of sound words" of the Bible in our daily decisions and behaviors. (2 Tim. 1.13) The question that arises from our professed beliefs is:
Why don't we trust in God enough to conform our lifestyle to His perfect counsel? (Psalm 73.28)
Living the non-compromising ethical lifestyle that Jesus commands is the most challenging, enjoyable and rewarding thing a person can do. Even though God's standard of behavior is perfection, He well knows that the capabilities and potential of each of us and never places us in a situation or circumstance we can't handle. In addition, our loving and merciful God not only provides Jesus to pay our sin debt, but gives us the Holy Spirit to enable us to correctly understand His counsel and to motivate us to obey it! (Phil. 2.13)
Something must be holding us back from connecting what we say we believe about God's Word to how we conduct our daily life. Since everyone, whether Christian or not, bases their lifestyle upon the principles in which they ultimately trust, the only conclusion I can settle on is that we trust in ourselves more than we trust in God. This conclusion puzzles me, however, because why would anyone profess to believe in the triune God of the Bible if they, in fact, believe that they are god?
If you imagine that you are smarter and wiser than God when it comes to knowing the best way to live, then what's keeping you from also imagining that you couldn't also do a better job of creating a "heaven" for all of the other self-appointed "gods" to reside in after they die?
Some might say, "If that is not the silliest thing I've ever heard, it's certainly the most stupid!" To which I would reply, "So is the idea that you can figure out a better way to live than the way God reveals on the pages of the Bible." Like it or not, each person will be judged according to what he has been exposed to with regard to God's law.
In the first century the Jews imagined that they were superior to the Gentiles because they had The Law of Moses and the gentiles did not. However, as Paul teaches, it's not what we know about God, but what we do with our knowledge. (Rom. 2.13) Even those who refuse to acknowledge God's law are, in truth, "suppressing it in unrighteousness." (Rom. 1.18-21) To live in a manner that refuses to obey God's written counsel is to become "a law to ourselves," (Rom. 2.14) and we will be judged according to our imagined ethical standard of right and wrong behavior. (Rom. 2.15) May we not forget that Jesus tells us, "If you want to enter into life, keep the commandments." (Matt. 19.17) This is not to imply that our good works can save us, but rather, if we have been converted by the Holy Spirit we will be motivated to incorporate biblical ethics into our lifestyle. (Heb. 13.20-21)
This is why the prophet Micah confidently proclaims:
He has shown you, O man, what is good, and what does the LORD require of you but to do justly, love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God? Micah 6.8
The priest Samuel adds:
Has the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams. 1 Samuel 15.22
Buddy Hanson is President of the Christian Policy Network and Director of the Christian Worldview Resources Center and has written several books on the necessity of applying one's faith to everyday situations, circumstances and decision-making.