Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Read The Bible

Books and letters written in a proper spirit, may, if the Lord is pleased to smile upon them, have their use. Indeed, the truths essential to the peace of our souls are so simple, and may be reduced to so few heads, that while each of them singly may furnish a volume drawn out at length, they may all be comprised in small compass.
But an awakened mind which thirsts after the Savior, and seeks wisdom by reading and praying over the Scripture, has little occasion for a library of human writings. The Bible is the fountain from whence every stream that deserves our notice is drawn; and, though we may occasionally pay some attention to the streams we have personally an equal right with others to apply immediately to the fountain-head, and draw the water of life for ourselves! The purest streams are not wholly freed from the tinge of the soil through which they run; a mixture of human infirmity is inseparable from the best human composition. But in the fountain the truth is unmixed!
Again, men teach us by many words; and if they would give us their full views of the subject, require us to read a whole volume, the life and substance of which is perhaps expressed with greater force and greater advantage in the Scripture by a single sentence which is rather diluted than explained, by our feeble expositions. A volume may be easily written upon the grace of humility, and to show the evil and folly of a self-seeking spirit. But if the author should introduce this subject with our Savior's words, "The Son of Man came not into the world to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many;" whoever was duly impressed with that short introduction, would have no great occasion to read the rest of the book!
The preaching of the Word of God being an instituted means of grace, ought to be thankfully and frequently improved. And human books that have a savor and unction may likewise be helpful, provided we read them with caution, compare them with the Scripture, and do not give ourselves implicitly to the rules or decisions of any man or set of men but remember that one is our Master and infallible Teacher, even Christ. But the chief and grand means of edification, without which all other helps will disappoint us, and prove like clouds without water are the Bible and prayer the Word of grace and the Throne of grace. A frequent perusal of the Bible will give us an enlarged and comprehensive view of the whole of true religion its origin, nature, genius, and tendency and preserve us from an over-attachment to any system of man's compilation.
The fault of the several doctrinal systems, under which, as under so many banners, the different denominations of Christians are ranged, is, that there is usually something left out which ought to have been taken in and something admitted, of supposed advantage, not authorized by the Scriptural standard.
A Bible Christian, therefore, will see much to approve in a variety of forms and parties; the providence of God may lead or fix him in a more immediate connection with some one of them but his spirit and affection will not be confined within these narrow enclosures. He insensibly borrows and unites with which is excellent in each, perhaps without knowing how far he agrees with them, because he finds all in the written Word of God.
[John Newton]


Matthew 4:4 ...  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.

Psalm 119:15-16 ... I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways. I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.

Jeremiah 15:16 ...  Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O Lord God of hosts.❤