Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Come on, baby, let's do the twist.

The Word for today:
Jeremiah 5, 6
The enemies of God have twisted and distorted God's Word from the very beginning.  In Genesis 3:1, we hear the serpent ask Eve, "Did God really say, 'You shall not eat of any tree in the garden'"?
We know this is a complete distortion of God's Word; because in Genesis 2:16-17, God had said they were free to eat from every tree but one:
"You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die."
"Every tree but one" might have meant thousands, even millions of trees to choose from. But in Satan's telling, there were exactly zero trees they could "choose" from.
God's generous original statement is made to seem stingy and miserly. The seed of doubt has been planted.
Together, Satan and Eve then proceed to diminish God's Word, add to God's Word, and soften God's Word. They make it say whatever they want it to say.
Pretty soon, we hear the serpent declare, "You will not surely die." (Genesis 3:4)
In the space of a few short verses, both God's overflowing generosity and his holy justice have been distorted and denied.
We hear a similar denial of God's judgment against sin in today's reading:
The people have lied about the Lord and said, "He will not do anything to us! Nothing bad will happen to us! We will never see war or hunger!" (Jeremiah 5:12/NCV)
Any person can try to twist any Bible verse to make it mean anything he wants it to mean. But God made the Bible to mean just one thing.
A verse taken out of context can be made to mean whatever. Even a book of the Bible, separated from the rest, can be made to mean whatever.
Even the Old Testament, separated from the New Testament; or the New Testament, separated from the Old Testament--can be distorted to mean whatever.
But when the whole Word of God is considered-- 31,173 verses in 66 books --then it has precisely one meaning:  Jesus.
God made man in his image. Then man distorted God's image with sin. So God gave us his Word -- Jesus, the express image of His person (1) -- to stop man from remaking God into the twisted thing we've made of ourselves.
(1) Hebrews 1:3

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