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    How Scripture Works In Life

    How do the Scriptures work in the life of a child of God? Just how does God use them to deal with us? Simple questions these are, and yet there are direct answers to these questions that have some very interesting applications. One very direct answer is in 2nd Timothy chapter 3 verse 16. Observe what is said there:
    ___________
    14 But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; 15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
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    Here we see a unique kind of faith-linked knowing, enabled by Scripture. And this variety of knowing makes people “wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”

    Understanding that faith is a gift of God and that not all men have faith, (Eph.2:8-10; Jn.1:11-13; 2Thes.3:2), critically, we acknowledge that: faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Rom.10:8-17). Saving faith is imparted in the new birth; it is not a natural ability of fallen man who is dead in trespasses and sins. It is a work secured and dispensed in the ministry of the Christ, in his life death and resurrection on our behalf. Also, our ongoing life in Christ, like its beginning, is by faith (Gal.3:1-3; Col.2:6-7). Therefore the Scriptures, as the word of God, are “able to make” this wisdom in man.

    Scriptures are the only source of saving faith. And they are worked directly by God to this end in our lives as we read them or hear them. This passage builds this claim on the inspiration of scripture having come by the breath of God, “θεοπνευστος”="by inspiration" God-breathed. Interesting also is the elaboration of this scripture ability in the statement that fallows: “and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” There are four results or fruits enumerated here in detail that together operate “That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” Perfect, “αρτιος”, has the idea of being fully adapted or complete for its purpose which here is “unto all good works fully outfitted.” A parallel idea is expressed in 2 Peter 1:3-4, “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.” Any man of God is fully adapted, fitted out by scripture only, completed for life lived by faith of the Son of God who loved him and gave himself for him. And the substance of that life is not of this world but is hidden above where Christ reigns at the right hand of God (Col.3:1-3; Gal.2:20). That which has come by the breath of God is here personalized in the communion we have with Christ by faith.

    Knowing Christ and being known of him is founded on the scriptures as it is on faith. Knowing Christ, experiencing a personal relationship with the Living God, and being known by Him define and evidence the new life. Without this there is no validity in the new life claim. A little must be said here regarding this “knowing” before we proceed to look at those four fruitful results scriptures are profitable for.

    First, this knowing is one in the sense that God’s knowing of us may be put, sustituted, for our knowing God, as Paul does in Galatians 4:9. Talking about the Galatians having come from ignorance of God and idolatrous service unto the adoption as sons and regeneration through faith in Christ and then to be set upon backward with the fleshly prescriptions of the law, Paul ponders: “But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?” Here being known by God is put for their having known God. Obviously there are two different things known so much as there are two different persons knowing. But their knowing God depended on his knowing them, and was part and parcel of it. Paul was certain that they were regenerated by God-given faith and had come to know him, so their back setting by legalistic rudiments was anomalous and contradictory to their divinely ministered life as they possessed it. What was it in this knowledge that accounted for Paul’s perplexity and manor of speaking?

    To deepen this question, look how this kind of knowledge becomes controversial in the passage where Jesus denies this affinity with professors who convinced themselves that they knew him: (Matt. 7:13-23) “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit; neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” What constitutes this imperative knowledge?

    When Christ asked Paul, “Why do you persecute me?” Paul questions who art thou Lord? Christ response: “I am Jesus whom you persecute” (Acts 9:3-6)was the beginning of Paul’s being known of Christ, and as well: of his knowing Christ. Paul for the first time sees himself as he is known by God and simultaneously understands who Jesus is as the Messiah. Though Paul’s experience of blinding light and the voice and presence of Christ might be unique, yet the interrogation of Christ is not. This heart exposing questioning is inevitable. This is the reality of knowing an omniscient and holy personal Savior. Notice how this is put in the letter to the Hebrews: (4.11-13) “Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief. For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.” God by his word reveals himself to us as who he is: holy, just, and righteous who cannot abide sin and who has made provision for sinners in the death of Christ. This means, necessarily, that we see ourselves as we truly are: sinners deserving of just condemnation and possessing nothing in ourselves of merit before his penetrating gaze. Like with Paul we see that in our flesh dwells no good thing, and that apart from Christ we can do nothing. We become manifest in his sight. No wonder the second principle in the new kingdom (after “poor in spirit”) is, “Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.” Only in profound knowledge of personal sin worked by knowing Christ knowing us, will recalcitrant, dull, obfuscating, and intractable ignorance be conquered in mans heart and man made to mourn. And only in his knowing presence, the Lamb of God slain from the foundation of the earth, will we ever be comforted. So then not only is this knowledge one, but secondly it communicates to us our true state as sinners before an offended God, “the eyes of him with whom we have to do.”

    Next this knowledge beholds in the death of Christ: justice and love combined by the free will of God in making him a curse for us that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. In this way it knows Devine love. And this not abstractly, but in personal relation with him who the disciples confessed has the words of life, (Jn.6:67-69) “Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.” This is a personal knowing that gives rise to the formal description and propositional declaration in the gospel. Paul formulates for the Romans, (3:26) “To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.” The gospel alone reconciles how it is that God can be just and yet justify the unjust. Our sin is nailed to the tree in our substitute and representative and the shed blood declares the satisfaction of the righteous demands of the Law given by a holy God. Behold the lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world.

    Lastly, this knowledge, since it is personal communion, is living: that is, it has the qualities of life: contact with this objective world which our savior has created, sustains by his power and is coming to judge. In this regard, “the just shall live by faith.” It is personal union with Christ that motivates personal trust in the sovereign providence of God who has said, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” And of course it is the scriptures that work these four fruits of doctrine, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness. This living aspect touches everything in our lives in and around us. Therefore, true believers redeem the time for the days are evil. But this buying up of the moments occurs as we walk with Christ in this fallen creation filled with the Holy Spirit in communion and fellowship with the eternal Son of God and doing the will, as he did before us, of the Father.

    Doctrine: διδασκαλιαν, is teaching as in the mater taught, content, information, or precept. Hence, doctrine is an excellent translation. Scripture has power to affect this. There is a primacy of doctrine in this list of four. It is first. Notice also that doctrine is not alone. It is fallowed by ελεγχον, translated by reproof. The idea is personal testing proof, conviction, detection (laying bare by exposure). This is a heart personalizing grasp of the doctrine as to what we are in its light. We might well say: it is God’s sight of us in the doctrines light. This is reproof. Doctrine without reproof is dead. This is where doctrine begins to live. These are not alone either; there fallows: επανορθωσιν, translated correction, it has the idea of putting things back into the right order, straightening things out, correcting what is wrong. If we recognize that with reproof we are mirrored in the doctrine’s light and found wanting, then we can see the place correction has. It will be a clean up work sweeping out the defective ideas and works. It will be a reconstructing work giving root and foundation to the doctrine by replacing new ideas and new works where the old ones before are swept away. This is correction. The last co-member is: παιδειαν την εν δικαιοσυνη, pedagogy, training in righteousness, training like a child receives for life in the real world. This is how the doctrine works out in new faith-life, wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. This last is where we are practically fitted out for lives that our sovereign lays before us in His infinite wisdom and providence. It is where God’s children’s senses are trained by experience to discern between good and evil and where we are walked through the applications life presents us, beholding the glory of God in the face of Christ. This is what Paul admonishes in Romans 12:1,2 “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

    Doctrine, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness are an organized interdependent group of works that scripture accomplishes in the child of God. The best way to demonstrate them is to observe them in Christ’s Sermon on the Mount. (Matthew ch.5-7)

    Doctrine: The nine beatitudes are a shocking declaration of the true marks of the blessing of God on His kingdom citizens. They are propositionally delivered to a mixed multitude of hearers who would each be familiar with rabbinic style and ingrown prejudices. The force of the nine is nothing if not radical in terms of current opinion, yet they are in reality continuous with OT Scripture, and introduce NT fulfillment in terms of their inwardness of heart. Never were words so right uttered among men so wrong, such light shown among such darkness. There must fallow a soul felt application of this truth to the desperate and amazed hearers.

    Reproof: Light and salt, the two similitudes, press these kingdom propositions home into the hearts of the hearers. Their savor is lost and their light hidden if these nine precepts are the criteria of judgment. If these things are true, then how could they have gotten so far removed from the substance of kingdom righteousness? Not only are the beatitudes apparently radical and impossible to obtain precepts, but the absoluteness of their gravity in the figures of light and salt leaves no amelioration to their personal guilt. Under salt, they are useless to God and fit only for humiliating destruction. Under light, they are culpable of their unnatural and obvious folly. Why does this teaching surprise and mystify them? They do not look good to God nor to their own selves in their light.

    Correction: There fallows, in the sermon, a series of comparing arguments that document where their thoughts went wrong and what Jesus proposes in contradistinction to them. These arguments range from minimizing the law and righteousness exceeding the Pharisees, through murder, reconciliation, lust, divorce, swearing, retaliation, alms giving, hypocrisy, prayer, forgiveness, fasting, anxiety and double mindedness, all the way to social judgment, ministry, neediness, and ending with warnings of wide gates, false prophets, bad trees, unknown-ness, and foolish foundations. “You have heard…but I say to you…” is a common method in this part. The idea of correction can be used as a hermeneutic (a tool to interpret) to elaborate these arguments based on the nine beatitudes being mirrored of the similitudes and then the bending back to straight and true of their misguided thoughts regarding the nine propositions.

    Training in Righteousness: Woven throughout the sermon's last sections in deliberate places are direct instructions in how to do some things. Works of charity, prayer, and admonition are examples of this. The direct instructions are not hard to distinguish from the corrections. In a fuller sense though, the training of the disciples in the rest of the gospel history continually illustrate this; so much so that Luke scatters the elements of this sermon throughout his gospel. An added note is that Christ did not leave these disciples comfortless (a word indicating his personal presence), but he sent the indwelling Holy Spirit in New Covenant fulfillment who would remind them of his words. This is the pedagogy that equips the child of God from the heart outward in this present life. This is where we prove the acceptable and perfect will of God in our daily lives until he comes and takes us home to be with him.

    SUMMARY

    How do the scriptures work in us? God knows us by them and we know him. They work illumination, repentance, faith and correction, restoration and the washing of regeneration. They are the ubiquitous (present in all the facets of our life) absolutes in knowing the will of the Father, which are refined like gold and silver in the daily pedagogy of the child of God. They are the personalized co-relatives (where we see ourselves as he sees us) of the sum and substance of our life in this world which is hidden in Christ. If they lay us low, they also pick us up and fit us for his presence. Chastisement can not be discerned apart from them, nor can the love that seeks our improvement in it be known. Where would we go from them, for they are the words of life? My sheep know my voice and they fallow me. The hammer that breaks the rock into pieces, they make us wise unto salvation. In the face of Christ they are living and active. If we are not known by them, we cannot know God. We too are not ashamed of them; for they are the power of God unto salvation. We may avoid them for a spell, but being blessed with hunger and thirst we are brought to seek them for our very lives. All this is the work of Christ our perfect savior who is able to save to the uttermost those who come to God by faith in him. You can not separate his word from him, nor him from his word; at least not in his knowledge of you and your knowledge of him.

    I am reminded of that text of scripture which says in Corinthians 3: "17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord."
    Last edited by xDICEx; 12-12-06 at 03:23 PM.

  2. #2
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    doctrine reproof correction and training in reightousness are bible observations in the sermon on the mount that show what happens un us as He uses scripture in our lives

    by HIS reproof, correction and trianing, that is how i servived so far in HIM

    i need to read this article again with more deeper understanding
    thanks dice

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    Hello joy. It is not so much our reading and studying Scripture, as the Holy Spirit reading us by the Scripture, putting us in our true light before the face of Christ with whom we have to do. The teaching, the reproof, the correction, and the schooling in righteousness are the rod and staff that comfort us. He is so great a Savior; he does not loose such as us, but is able to make us stand before the presence of his glory unreprovable and unblamable in his sight. That which is impossible with men He does with power and pleasure, who for the joy set before him endured the cross despising the shame and is set down at the right hand of God. ...DGB

    To the great shepherd of the sheep be all glory, honor, and power forever. Amen

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    Thanks for this. I'm new here and I think I'm going to like it.

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    Hello hopefulson. Nice to meet you. I hope TJ's forums and chat will be helpful to you in your walk, study of the Scripture, and fellowship. It is a place you can share some of the things you think the Lord may have given you, as well as interact; Iron shapeneth Iron. Welcome to you and God bless.

    ...DGB

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    Ok Dice..I read it. But I think I shall read it again in the morning when my mind is perhaps a little keener.
    At this point I find your writing a little deep and slightly beyond my grasp. However I feel there are some parts that are 'right on the money' so to speak.
    This may be due in part to my inability to follow your 'train of thought'.
    One thing I clearly don't understand...you state that God knows us through scripture, or rather 'by them'. I must not be grasping your meaning because I figure God knew me long before the scriptures were ever penned as it were.
    You certainly give the reader a lot to think about and this is good.
    Later Friend, Fuzzy

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    How are you doing fuzzy? What I was getting at was not God's absolute knowledge of us as in his omniscience, but rather his reveling himself to us as he communes with and knows us. This knowing is personalized by the indwelling Holy Spirit and works as the scriptures are illuminated to our hearts; we see ourselves as he sees us, and we know him. This is an experiential knowledge. To be known by him in this way is a personal relationship. Does this clear it up? ...DGB

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    Being Known by God

    That's more in line with what I was thinking Dice.
    I sometimes have to re-read an article two or three times before I get the deeper meaning.
    Thanks for the explaination.
    DLB

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    No doubt word of God is for life

    The word of God is always for life and so we need to read, listen, meditate, apply to our lives...good...to hear that...:sun:

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    As Israel was tested in the wilderness (Deut. 8): “1 All the commandments which I command thee this day shall ye observe to do, that ye may live, and multiply, and go in and possess the land which the LORD sware unto your fathers. 2 And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. 3 And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live. 4 Thy raiment waxed not old upon thee, neither did thy foot swell, these forty years. 5 Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee. 6 Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, and to fear him:” So Christ was tested after his baptism (Matt 4): “3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. 4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.”

    This is amazing for the preeminence it attributes to Scripture in all our lives. The half has not been told. Are you tested in life? There is a word here for you, that is your life. Will we not know the Bible very well if it is our life? We will if Christ is our life, because He did. …DGB

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