Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | March 30, 2018

“Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.”

Today’s devotion comes from Matthew chapter 4.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+4&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.  And after He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He then became hungry.  And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.”  But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘MAN SHALL NOT LIVE ON BREAD ALONE, BUT ON EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDS OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD.’”

Then the devil *took Him into the holy city and had Him stand on the pinnacle of the temple, and *said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down;  for it is written,

‘HE WILL COMMAND HIS ANGELS CONCERNING YOU’;

and

‘ON THEIR HANDS THEY WILL BEAR YOU UP,
SO THAT YOU WILL NOT STRIKE YOUR FOOT AGAINST A STONE.’”

Jesus said to him, “On the other hand, it is written, ‘YOU SHALL NOT PUT THE LORD YOUR GOD TO THE TEST.’”

Again, the devil *took Him to a very high mountain and *showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory;  and he said to Him, “All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me.”  Then Jesus *said to him, “Go, Satan!  For it is written, ‘YOU SHALL WORSHIP THE LORD YOUR GOD, AND SERVE HIM ONLY.’”  Then the devil *left Him;  and behold, angels came and began to minister to Him.”  Matthew 4:1-11.

——————

In today’s Scripture, we see that the devil quoted Scripture, but he misused Scripture to form conclusions to tempt Jesus.

Anyone can quote Scripture.  Any church can claim to be a Bible-believing church.

But, it does not mean that one who quotes Scripture is teaching the truth, nor does it mean that church who claims to be a Bible-believing church is teaching the truth.

Are their summaries and conclusions true?  In other words, is their doctrine true?

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.”  2 Timothy 2:15.

It is not sufficient to just quote Scripture;  we need to accurately handle the word of truth.

Too often, a preacher or teacher will quote just one of a few verses and use that very little basis to support a rambling and long sermon or message.

But, a preacher or teacher may also quote Scripture extensively but use it to support his own personal agenda rather than use it to support the true meaning of Scripture.

Too often, a preacher or teacher will ignore the context of the Scripture or other passages of Scripture that should be considered.

And, too often, congregations encourage such misuse of Scripture.  “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine;  but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.”  2 Timothy 4:3.

Scripture emphasizes the importance of truth.

Jesus said both in Matthew 15:9 and Mark 7:7:  ‘BUT IN VAIN DO THEY WORSHIP ME, TEACHING AS DOCTRINES THE PRECEPTS OF MEN.’”

Jesus also stated in John 16:13:  “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth;  …”

Jesus also stated in John 4:23-24:  “But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth;  for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.  God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Not any kind of worship will suffice, but “worship in spirit and truth”.

“Brethren, my heart’s desire and my prayer to God for them is for their salvation.  For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge.  For not knowing about God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God.  For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.”  Romans 11:1-4.

Not any kind of zeal will suffice, but zeal “in accordance with knowledge”, or in other words, in accordance with truth.

“But we should always give thanks to God for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth.”  2 Thessalonians 2:13.

Not any kind of faith will suffice, but “faith in the truth”.

There are those who “did not receive the love of truth so as to be saved”.  2 Thessalonians 2: 10-13.

Not any kind of love will suffice, but “the love of truth”.


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