Our Lord is a Lord of words. This is plainly evident from the Scriptures, as the Lord Jesus Christ is the Word of God made flesh. As we read in John, chapter 1:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. (John 1:1-4)
And again in Revelation, chapter 19:
And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. (Revelation 19:11-13)
And in I John, chapter 5:
For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. (I John 5:7)
Thus we find that the person who is the fulness of the Godhead bodily, the Lord Jesus Christ, is the Word that expresses the nature, will and intent of God to man. This alone is enough for us to declare that the LORD God is a Lord that communicates primarily through words. However, the Lord has gone further in demonstrating that he is a Lord of words, and specifically the written word. Throughout the Scriptures we find that the LORD God has books that He keeps of our lives, and a book that records the names of all those who have trusted the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour. In the Old Testament, during the time of the Exodus, Moses spoke to the Lord about the Book of Life in which are written the names of all those who have trusted the Lord Jesus Christ for their salvation.
And Moses returned unto the LORD, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a great sin, and have made them gods of gold. Yet now, if thou wilt forgive their sin–; and if not, blot me, I pray thee, out of thy book which thou hast written. And the LORD said unto Moses, Whosoever hath sinned against me, him will I blot out of my book. (Exodus 32:31-33)
In Psalms we find a testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ when He suffered on the cross for our sin. In this testimony from the 69th Psalm, the Lord condemns those who take the opportunity of His suffering to add to His grief.
For they persecute him whom thou hast smitten; and they talk to the grief of those whom thou hast wounded. Add iniquity unto their iniquity: and let them not come into thy righteousness. Let them be blotted out of the book of the living, and not be written with the righteous. But I am poor and sorrowful: let thy salvation, O God, set me up on high. (Psalm 69:26-29)
And finally, the most recognized Scripture concerning the books of God is in Revelation, chapter 20:
And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. (Revelation 20:11-12)
So then, as you read this, books are being written and records kept in heaven concerning the life of every individual on the face of the earth. To the LORD God, the written word is of paramount importance for communicating to man, and for the keeping of records. Indeed, it is a shock for some to realize that the LORD God has elevated Scripture, which is the word of God, above all His holy name.
I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name. (Psalm 138:2)
It is clear that the LORD God created the written word for the keeping of records in that we find the Lord caused the lists of the genealogies to be kept as a record for all to see. Undeniably, lists of genealogies must be written records as there is no other way in which accurate records can be kept. It should not be necessary to cite Scripture, as the lists of genealogies in Numbers, Matthew, Luke and other places in Scripture are plain to see.
Finally, the Scripture itself declares that the LORD God is a Lord of words, particularly the written word.
Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever: That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the LORD: Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits: Get you out of the way, turn aside out of the path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us. (Isaiah 30:8-11)
And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. (Exodus 17:14)
The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD God of Israel, saying, Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book. (Jeremiah 30:1-2)
Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods? If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken; Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God? (John 10:34-36)
Considering all these things, we should count it a blessing that the LORD God has given us a written language with which we can communicate thoughts, ideas, facts, events, and most importantly, the Gospel of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Even in this day and time, there are ethnic groups in this world that do not have a written language. As a result, those groups are held back from any advancement in their society, and from the things that would make life easier in this world. However, the most detrimental effect of not having a written language is that there is no way that an individual in that culture can sit down with the pure word of God and read for themselves what the LORD requires of them. Instead, they must depend upon someone else to tell them what the LORD requires of them, and still they have no way of checking the accuracy of what they are told. As a result, any true advancement of their society cannot take place and they are held in darkness.
The evidence for the above statements cannot be hid: history plainly shows what caused the Dark Ages. It is imperative for us to note that Western culture and society did not advance so long as the written word of God was withheld from the people at large. Because of the power of the Catholic Church, they were able to forbid individuals from possessing or reading the Scripture under pain of death. The vast majority of people in Europe at that time had no idea of what the LORD God required of them, and any information they received concerning that came from the Catholic Church predigested and stripped of any real meaning. Thus, they were unable on their own to come to any real understanding of what salvation is, and how one is reconciled to God through the Lord Jesus Christ. As a result, the LORD God could not bestow any blessings upon them as individuals, or as a society.
This is not to say that preachers are not needed, rather, it is to say that once the preacher is done preaching, and hearts are stirred, those individuals who received the word of God can then take the Scripture and verify what the preacher said, and see how the LORD God sent the preacher to them so that they too can be reconciled to God though Christ. In all this, the LORD can continue to work in their hearts long after the missionary or evangelist has left. Even if someone initially refuses to hear the preacher, they are quite likely to take a tract, a pamphlet, a Bible study or even the Bible itself and in some private place read it when they think they are all alone. And, since the LORD is ever seeking for those who are lost to be saved, the LORD will, if the person is at all willing, begin to work in that individual’s heart to draw that person to Christ. In this way, even though the preacher is long gone, the individual who initially refused to listen is being preached to from the word of God. If, however, they have no written language, no written word, then once the preacher leaves, the LORD can only use what they really listened to and retained. Moreover, they have no way of increasing their understanding of what God is requiring of them until the preacher returns. Thus they are vulnerable to the Devil who delights in keeping them in darkness.
So then, should we take it for granted that we have a written language, and the written word of God which is the Scripture? Absolutely not. Instead, we ought to be the more diligent in publishing the Scripture particularly, and booklets, tracts and studies that are thoroughly grounded and built upon the sound doctrine of the Scripture. After all, it is those who were called Anabaptist and Baptist, and who held Baptist doctrine that were also named the people of the Book. Even so, it should be the case with Baptists today, particularly fundamental, Bible-believing Baptists.
Thus, with all that has been said thus far, as a fundamental, unaffiliated Baptist, I encourage you to avail yourself of the materials offered. It is my intention that they be edifying and challenging, and a cause for growth in Christ. It is also my desire that they assist you in gaining a better understanding of who the LORD God is, and what the LORD God is doing in your life and in this world.
With that thought, I leave you with a word from the Scripture, which is the rule for everything I write, and have perceived from the Word of God.
To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. (Isaiah 8:20)
We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. (I Peter 1:19-21)
Paul W. Davis
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|The Impossible Command
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|The House of Witness
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|The Impossible Command
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|The Impossible Command cover
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|What Kind of War
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|The Election of Grace|