Power for understanding,
Is God’s holy Word,
The message is commanding,
Above all we’ve seen and heard.
It’s a series of stories,
Of failure of all kinds,
The majesty in God’s glories,
And his salvation power to unbind.
LITANIES of tragedy, victory, defeat, exile, death, pillage, gore, and even the seemingly unbelievable; that, in sum, partly at least, is the Holy Bible.
As I walked recently – (God always seems to talk to me when I walk) – I was reminded, “My Word is about failures – in person and deed and life experience – as an encouragement for those, like you right now, who feel like failures. My Word reminds you that you are not alone in feeling this way. It reminds you to look beyond your failures unto Me. Life is not about success or failure; it’s about Me, your Saviour and Lord. Fix your eyes, your heart, your senses, and your thought on Me, for I will save you, again and again and again.”
As we cast a glancing eye over the Word of God we see that the good biblical characters – those revealing God’s glory in and through his Word – had anger management issues, were greedy (e.g. several of the kings), lost sight of their calling, wandered from the path of their calling, murdered (Moses and David), ran away from their problems (Jonah), insulted God (Job, David, etc), were prostitutes (Rahab), committed adultery (David), and battled unforgiveness (Peter and Paul). This is only a scraping of the biblical surface.
The object of God’s Word – particularly the Old Testament – is to highlight: 1) how far from God we actually are, and 2) how much we need to desperately cling to God in order to not miss the mark. The object of the New Testament is the revealing of God’s grace through Jesus Christ; our Blessed Assurance.
We are failures in the sense that we are fallen creatures with flesh-held desires we cannot fully control. We are failures in the sense that we either doubt ourselves or we puff ourselves up. We are failures in the sense of being for our own guidance. We are bad guides of ourselves.
The Word of God propounds these truths – over and over again.
Without God we have not a hope and we remain in the actuality of hell – where part of that hell is in simply not knowing.
With God – through the encouragement of his Word, which points us to futility of doing life in our own strength – we have what we need; a day or a moment at a time.
God’s Word is a lamp unto our feet. It lights our way. And that light is contingent on following him steadfastly and earnestly.
God’s Word is beautiful in this: from character to character we read of failure upon failure. It encourages us in our failures to keep going, and to refocus on our King, Jesus, who makes all things new.
© 2014 S. J. Wickham.