28 "The prophet who has a dream let him tell a dream; And he who has My word, let him speak My word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat? says the LORD. 29 "Is not My word like a fire?" Says the LORD, "And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?" (NKJV)
Even before all 66 books were written, enemies tried their best to destroy the Bible.
King Manasseh of Judah encouraged paganism -- even the sacrifice of children to Molech -- and probably destroyed all copies of the Law he could find.
Description of Molech:
Molech was a bronze statue, human in form, with an ox's head and hands extended upward with in the shape of a bowl.
The image was hollow within and heated from below by a furnace in its belly.
The heat from the furnace would rise upward making the hands sizzling hot.
Children who were sacrificed to Molech were placed inside the hands and burned as a sacrifice while drums drowned out their cries.(from International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, revised edition, Copyright © 1979 by Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. All rights reserved.)
20 years later, however, after King Manasseh’s death, his grandson, Josiah, found the lost book of the Law in the Temple.
The book that had been placed in the foundation during the days of its construction.
One copy of the Scriptures that had escaped destruction.
Josiah, a child king, came to the throne at the age of 8.
At 16, Josiah sought after God and followed the nobler, spiritual steps of his ancestor, King David rather than the gross immoral steps of his grandfather, Manasseh and his father, Amon.
It is interesting that God used a child to undo the life-time campaigns of evil men.
Truly, a child shall lead them.
That is how powerful God's Word is.
After the discovery of those long lost books of the Law, Josiah called for public reading and observance of the Law and mighty Religious Revival resulted.
500 years later - during the times between the Old Testament and the New Testament - the Syrian ruler, Antiochus Epiphanies, marched on Palestine.
He plundered the Temple and destroyed all the Old Testament books he could lay his hands on.
Whoever was found possessing the Hebrew Scripture was condemned to death right on the spot.
In response to Antiochus’ rebellion, God raised up a revolution, led by the Maccabees.
3 years after Antiochus Epiphanies ordered the Scriptures destroyed, he died in disgrace.
Worship was re-instituted in Jerusalem and the Scripture again was taught to the people.
313 years after the birth of Jesus, cruel Roman Emperor Diocletian, set out to destroy Christianity and all Hebrew and Christian Scriptures.
He took piles of precious books and burned them. He also murdered thousands of Christians.
Within 10 years, Diocletian was dead by his own hand.
When Constantine came to the throne he encouraged every person in the empire to read the Christian Scriptures.
Today, in many countries, the Scriptures are forbidden and yet the Bible is the biggest item sold on the black market.
More Bibles are being distributed in hundreds of languages all over the world even to remote areas where the Gospel has not reached.
Some areas were so tough; that the Bible had to be smuggled in such as was the case in the Communist Bloc nations before it crumbled.
~Brother Andrews - God's Smuggler
Today we are hearing on Christian radio stations of the need to send millions of Bible to countries where formerly there were no Bibles.
There have been many attempts to get rid of the Inspired WORD OF GOD, both in the past and in more recent times. Each time that the Scripture have been under attack, it has come back "like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces."
Bible distribution has grown increasingly and now there is a big campaign to saturate countries that have been closed to the Gospel for many years.
Since the undoing of the USSR, many of the countries that formed that Soviet block of nations have become more accessible and the church is desperately scrambling trying to get the Word to those hungry people.
Far East Broadcasting Company has used short-wave radio to dictate scripture to its listeners in those countries at a pace that would let them write their own copy of the Bible.
In the Free World, the GIDEONS have faithfully distributed the scriptures. You can find a GIDEON Bible in almost every Hotel or Motel.
The Gideon pocket-sized New Testament has been distributed in thousands of schools. Although we do not see this in the USA.
A Chicago real-estate broker, William A. Chapman, lay seriously ill in a hospital while a Christian layman prayed that God would heal him and call him into Christian service.
After recovery he took a trip south to a warmer climate to rest and regain his strength.
One night he and his wife stopped at a motel in Biloxi, Mississippi.
Inside his motel room was a Gideon Bible.
Looking at the Gideon Bible he said to his wife,
"I wonder how many houses there are in this country without a Bible."
This triggered his memory to recall the time that a layman had come into his hospital room praying that God would heal him and call him into Christian service.
That night, inspired by a layman and the faithfulness of the Gideons, the "American Home Bible League" was born.
That real-estate broker determined to put a Bible in every home.
40 years later, the name changed slightly to "World Home Bible League".
Since its birth in the motel room, millions of copies of the Scripture have been distributed in over 30 languages to homes throughout the world.
How important is God's word?
It is so important that God promised that it would never perish forever.
“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away." (NKJV)
Let us cherish its value.
God chose the Holy Scriptures as His strongest method to communicate the Good News.
Let us not reason like the Rich Man who died and went to hell in Jesus' story of Lazarus, the beggar.
The rich man’s reasoning that someone from the grave would communicate God’s message most effectively.
27 "Then he said, 'I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father's house, 28 for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.' 29 Abraham said to him, 'They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.' 30 And he said, 'No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.' 31 But he said to him, 'If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.'" (NKJV)
How important is God's word?
According to Jesus' story in Luke 16, it is very important.
It will determine heaven or hell for you.
It is sword of the Spirit, our weapon when the enemy attacks us.
2 Samuel 23:9-10
9 And after him was Eleazar the son of Dodo, the Ahohite, one of the three mighty men with David when they defied the Philistines who were gathered there for battle, and the men of Israel had retreated. 10 He arose and attacked the Philistines until his hand was weary, and his hand stuck to the sword. The Lord brought about a great victory that day; and the people returned after him only to plunder. (NKJV)
God’s Word is our scalpel used for internal surgery.
We often look at the scriptures as the sword we use in warfare.
It also serves as a scalpel for internal surgery. It helps us cut out the cancerous, sinful cells that cause spiritual death.
“For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (NKJV)
It is our spiritual MRI that sees everything that is in our head.
It is our spiritual XRay that sees all that is in our heart.
The Word of God is the Great Physician’s instruction to total and complete spiritual renewal.
It is our roadmap to salvation:
- God loves me
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (NKJV)
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (NKJV)
1 John 4:16
And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. (NKJV)
- I have sinned, I have done wrong things
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (NKJV)
- Jesus came to earth to pay for the penalty for my sins when he died on the cross and rose again.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (NKJV)
Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (NKJV)
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: (NKJV)
- I believe in Jesus Christ and invite Him into my life as my Savior, my King, and my very best Friend.
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. (NKJV)
9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (NKJV)
1 John 1:9
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (NKJV)
As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, (NKJV)