The Word for today:
Deuteronomy 16, 17
The truth – the Word of God -- is actively suppressed (Romans 1:18) by unbelievers who are (often unwittingly) under the direction of the rulers of this present darkness (Ephesians 6:12/RSV).
As I was driving around town this morning, literally minding my own business, I got an earful of truth suppression. With my car radio tuned into a normally harmless local talk show, I was subjected to a couple examples of the attacks that are mounted against the Bible by its enemies, under the direction of their commander in chief, Satan.
Satan hates the Word of God, and especially the book of Deuteronomy, for it is the Sword by which Jesus Christ withstood him in the wilderness:
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.
And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry.
Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “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 by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” (Deuteronomy 8:3)
Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him 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 shall give His angels charge over you,’ and, 'In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone.’”
Jesus said to him, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’” (Deuteronomy 6:16)
Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly 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 will fall down and worship me.”
Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’ ” (Deuteronomy 6:13)
Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him. (Matthew 4:1-11)
Moreover, the Bible is the Sword which will enforce Satan’s ultimate demise:
I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations.
Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies gathered together to make war against the rider on the horse and his army. But the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who had performed the miraculous signs on his behalf. With these signs he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped his image. The two of them were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. (Revelation 19:11-15a, 19-20)
I don't get too indignant over criticism of the Bible because I understand why its critics snipe at it.
They snipe at it because they are dumber than bricks about it. They are dumber than bricks about the Bible because the Bible actively hides the truth from those who approach it with a critical spirit.
It is a closed book to anyone who opens it to find fault with it. The Bible is spiritually discerned, which means that the person who won't believe it can't believe it:
No one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Corinthians 2:11-14)
If a person opens the Bible to find truth, he will find truth. If he opens it to find life, he will find life. If he opens it to find love, he will find love. If he opens it to find God, he will find God.
But if he opens it to condemn it, he will find himself condemned to ignorance.
***Tomorrow, we will hear the attacks I heard this morning. Then we will counterattack.