September 27, 2023

The Whole Bible Governs and Applies to Every Area of Life

The Whole Bible Governs and Applies to Every Area of Life

Posted in In line with Scripture

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

–II Timothy 3:16-17

To start with, I looked up that first word, “all” in the original Greek. Do you know what it means? It means, “All”! God inspired every word of Scripture, including the 2/3 known as the Old Testament. The term “Old” there doesn’t mean obsolete or out of date. Could we use those terms in describing God or His Word? No way! I’ve heard some say that unless God’s Word is re-confirmed in the New Testament, it is no longer binding. I’ve heard others say that unless the New Testament specifically overrules a portion of the Old Testament, then it still stands! That second option sounds a lot more like what you would expect to find in the word of the Almighty, Omniscient, Eternal God. … Why should He repeat Himself? (See also Matt 4:4).

Notice what God’s Word is profitable for: keeping us on the trail of Righteousness (doctrine), slapping our wrists when we stray from the trail (reproof), showing us how to get back on the trail (correction), and training us to stay put! So keep your nose in that Book!

Now, apart from the obvious meaning of the phrase “complete, thoroughly equipped” I decided to look up that word “every” in the original Greek. Do you know what it means? It means “every”. Is performing brain surgery a good work? Sure is. Is building a bridge a good work? You bet. How about breeding a better quality wool onto the backs of sheep? Of course. Do you think even the tasks of collecting the garbage and sweeping the streets would fall into the category of “every good work”? Undeniably they would. “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” (I Corinthians 10:31)

While the Bible does not give us all the facts with which we may perform brain surgery to the glory of God, it does give us the TRUTH about all facts so that we are thereby enabled to perform brain surgery to the glory of God. As the Lord Jesus said in John 8:31-32, “If you abide in my word, you are my disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Not free to do your own thing. But free from the deceitfulness of sin, “lest anyone should cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.” (Colossians 2:8) Once set free from this kind of thing you are now ABLE to do all to the glory of God.

As an example of this principle, journalists and authors who are not committed to serving the God of truth and grace will begin to serve themselves by using their writing skills to produce whatever will sell or promote their position or denigrate their opposition. The medical researcher not committed to serving the God of health and healing will begin to use his skills to generate endless income and notoriety from innumerable experiments, outlandish projects, and sensational (though almost always provisional) results. Or he may just go the route of becoming part of the abortion industry and simply murder for money. The manufacturer who is not committed to the God of excellence and stewardship will use cheaper materials and even build in faults and obsolescence to ensure repeat business for himself.

So really, Christians should not be asking how it is that the Scriptures can have a vital bearing on every educational discipline and every occupational qualification; rather, Christians should be asking how they themselves could possibly do ALL to the glory of God WlTHOUT a thoroughly Scriptural perspective on every area of human endeavour. The fact that most Christians perceive a spiritual realm in which Jesus is Lord, as well as a secular realm of work, economics, politics, etc., shows that these Christians do not believe that Jesus is Lord of all, but only of part. Apart from the fact that you may not smoke, drink, gamble or cuss, if your politics, your economics, your concepts of social welfare, education and medicine are the same as the non-Christian down the street, then either your faith is irrelevant to this life on earth, or else you have been trained in such a way that you believe that you are a Christian when in fact you think and act like a pagan.

Let me illustrate. As Christians we say we abhor cursing, swearing, blasphemy, immorality, the denigration of virtues and the glorification of sinfulness. And yet what do we spend a big wad of money on to purchase and then to keep licensed every year? A TV set. This box is so placed in our homes that the maximum number of people may view it at once in comfort. It does not operate itself, but we must ourselves actively switch it on. We often leave it on so that we may hear it while we are out of the room. And what proceeds out of this box? Blasphemy of the worst sort, nudity and immorality. We would never let our children, or even uninvited guests, speak or act or (un)dress the way we blithely allow TV characters to do in the middle of our livingrooms. And yet we actually PAY to have this trash beamed straight into our homes, we actively and willfully switch it on so that we may see and hear these abominations, and nobody is standing over us forcing us to do it! And yet we say we hate blasphemy, immorality, etc. Even non-Christians recognise this for what it is: hypocrisy .

If our theology regarding our involvement in life’s institutions of politics, economics, education, medicine, social welfare, etc. amounts to singing a rapturous rendition of the old Animals’ hit, “We Gotta Get Outta This Place”, then we have a theology of escapism and not victory. It means that we do not believe the Lord Jesus when He says that faith in Him overcomes the world, that He who is in us is greater than he who is in the world. (I John 5:4-5 & 4:4) We have all heard people say you should not polish the brass on a sinking ship. But what if the ship is not sinking? If I have not trained up my children to be totally committed soldiers of the cross because I do not believe they will need those skills since the end is so close, and the Lord does not return for another 100 or so years, my grandchildren and great-grandchildren will not bless me but rather curse me because I left them unprepared. And what will the Lord say about this dereliction of duty when I meet Him face to face? When Christ said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me,” (Matthew 28:18), He meant it. Jesus Christ IS the King of Kings and Lord of Lords . This includes being the Omniscient Master of wisdom and understanding in the areas of industrial relations, law, politics, health, social welfare, art, cinema, journalism and also, yes, the education and training of our children.

From Keystone Magazine
November 1996 , Vol. II No. 6
P O Box 9064
Palmerston North
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