Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Mother Word?

For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.
I Peter 1:23

He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.
James 1:18

We give high regard to mothers in our culture. In fact we have set aside a national holiday annually to celebrate mother's since 1914. Comparatively, it wasn't until 1972 that Father's Day became an official national holiday. There are many reasons why mothers in particular are important and deserve our respect, but pehaps the greatest reasons are that they carried us in their wombs for nine months, birthed us into this world, and then nourished us from their own bodily supplies for many more months afterward. If it weren't for our mothers we wouldn't be here. This theme of motherhood is picked up and applied to other things in our culture as well like Mother Nature, Mother Earth, and even Mother Russia. But have you ever heard anyone refer to the Word of God as a Christians mother? Maybe I'm stretching it a bit, but Scripture does teach that Christians are born again through the Word.

To be born again does not mean (as Nicodemus sarcastically suggested in John 3) that you should enter your mother's womb again to be born a second time. It means that when a person surrenders their life to Jesus they are made new. II Corinthians 5:17 says, "If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has gone, the new has come." That verse explains what happens when Christ's blood is applied to you. All of your sin is washed away. You get a clean slate and are, in God's eyes, made new. But being born again is about much more than having your record expunged in heaven. Scripture teaches that the Spirit of God is placed inside of you when we accept Christ and this makes you new in a very real way as well. Your desire to sin is drastically reduced. A love for the things of God and His peole is kindled within you. Your entire perspective on life and on eternity is changed. You are a new person.

This new birth is wrought for you through the living Word of God. No Christian has ever come to saving faith apart from first hearing the gospel. Romans 10:14 says, "How can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?" Thus, it isn't until the truth of Jesus' love and sacrifice has been preached to you that the Holy Spirit works in your heart to call you to repentance.

This has powerful implications for how you relate to the Word of God. I Peter 2: 2-3 says that now that you have tasted that the Lord is good you ought to crave that Word like newborn babies crave pure spiritual milk so that by it you can grow up. In other words, your salvation has proven to you how powerful and good God's Word is. So in the same way that a baby returns to its mother for nourishment so too you ought to return to the source of your faith to nourish it. So let me ask you, when was the last time you feasted on the Word of God? Take some time right now to nourish your soul.

For further reading...
  • II Timothy 3:16-17- All Scripture is useful.
  • Isaiah 55:8-11- God´s Word always accomplishes what He sends it to do.
  • Psalm 119:97-112- Did you know that the longest chapter in the Bible is an acrostic poem detailing how marvelous God's Word is? Here is a taste.
  • Hebrews 5:11-14- We ought to grow in what parts of the Word we can understand as well.

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