STUDY THE WORD OF GOD DAILY
In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God. KJV
In the beginning, the word existed. The word was with God, and the word was God. ISV
In the above scripture, we discover that the beginning was not the creation of the heaven and the earth (Genesis 1:1) rather, God created the heaven and earth in the beginning.
Hence, the beginning is not made significant by a time, period of time or an age; the beginning is made significant by existence and occurrence. That which existed from the beginning is the beginning. Therefore, the beginning is a being i.e. person. This person is called the WORD who is God. Creation was made in the word of God and by the word of God (Genesis 1:1, 3-27)
WHO IS THE WORD OF GOD?
- The word of God is God. John 1:1
- The word of God is the only begotten of God; the person of Jesus Christ. John 1:14, Rom 1:3
- The word of God is now the first begotten of God from the dead that is, the first to come back from the dead. Rev 1:5
- Jesus is the beginning, He is called the Alpha (first alphabet in the Greek alphabets - the beginning). “…I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book…” Revelations 1:10-11, KJV
The word existed before anything was created; everything was created through the word. The word gives life to everything. The Holy Scripture is the word of God. God and the word are inseparable.
Let us consider the questions below for better understanding;
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
Is there a difference between reading and studying God’s word?
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines reading and studying as below;
READ: to read means to look at and understand the meaning of letters and words, symbols etc.
STUDY: The activity or process of learning about something by reading, memorizing facts, attending school etc.
While reading entails understanding the meaning of letters and words, Study encompasses reading (that is, reading is part of studying), memorizing facts, attending school. Studying entails getting in-depth knowledge. In studying God’s word, one must pay attention to every single word, phrase, punctuation mark and clause, ensure you commit what you study to your memory and get schooled in the field you are studying...yes, it is that important.
The Bible is meant to be studied by Christians and not just to be read like other books. This means that we must read the Bible, understand the letters, words, phrases, punctuation marks and clauses in it. And, go further by ensuring we memorize it and be thoroughly schooled in it. “But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; …” (Isaiah 28:13). This implies that if we can, we must go as far as getting the original Hebrew and Greek translations.
The Greek word for “study” is “spoudazō” (pronounced spoo-dad’-zo) it means to exert one’s self, to Endeavour, to give diligence, to labour. This means that the act of studying is a grace-enabled serious and diligent work and labour. So when we pick up our Bibles we must condition ourselves to work. We must approach the word of God with the workman mindset.
This is why Apostle Paul told Timothy to count them of double honour who labour in the word and in doctrine (1Timothy 5:17). Everyone who labours in the word (be him an ordained minister of the gospel or a member of the church) of God and in doctrine should be counted of double honour.
WHY ARE WE TO LABOUR IN THE WORD AND DOCTRINE?
1. We are to labour in the word and doctrine so we can be approved of God.
2. We are to labour in the word of God so we can be counted of double honour.
In order to understand the word of God properly as we study our Bible, we must know the following
1. The Holy Bible is the word of God and only God can make us understand it through His Holy Spirit.
2. The Bible is the ONLY book God gave to Christians as our manual for living, our code of conduct and our constitution for operation.
3. The Old Testament of the Bible was originally written Hebrew and Aramaic, while the New Testament of the Bible was written in Greek.
4. The Old Testament is the New Testament concealed, while the New Testament is the Old Testament revealed.
5. The whole Bible i.e Old and New Testament speak about Jesus.
6. The Bible was written in pictorial, symbolic, typological and numeric codes.
7. Every book in the Bible was written by God through a human author.
8. In order to understand every book in the Bible, you must know the mind of the author.
9. Every book of the Bible was written in context.
10. Never pick a scripture out of context and start using it; this will make you a con.
11. The Bible was not originally written in Chapters, it was broken into chapters years after the original manuscripts were written. This means that each book was a continuous text as such every chapter is a continuation of the previous chapter.
12. Study the Bible by using all the types of studies viz:
- Book study: Studying a book of the Bible and books related to it. e.g Daniel, Ezra, Revelation etc.
- Character study: Studying a character i.e person in the Bible. e.g Jesus, Abraham, David etc.
- Topical Study: Studying a topic in the Bible. E.g Rapture, Righteousness, love, Evangelism etc.
- Doctrinal study: Studying a doctrine in the Bible. E.g Repentance from dead works, Faith towards God, baptism, laying on of hands etc.
- Events study: studying various events that happened in the Bible. e.g the birth of Jesus, the miracles of Jesus, the crucifixion of Jesus, the resurrection of Jesus, the ascension of Jesus, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost etc.
- Historical and Cultural study: Studying the history and culture of the Jews and how it influenced the scriptures.
- Employ the use of a good Bible close to the original Hebrew and Greek text e.g New American Standard Bible NASB or English Standard version ESV these translations are the closest to the original Hebrew and Greek text.
- Any translation of the Holy Bible containing sixty-six (66) books is just enough for every believer to live the life of Christ Jesus.
DRINK ALOT OF MILK DAILY
As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:
1 Peter 2:2 KJV
Milk is the first stage and kind of food taken by every newborn baby. So drinking a lot of milk daily is the act of knowing the fundamentals of the word of God daily. In order words, one of the symbolic representations of the word of God is "Milk".
The word of God is useful for all stages of the Christian life. It is important to know that the Christian life has the same growth stages, signs and symptoms with the normal life viz baby stage, childhood or toddler stage, adolescent stage, youth stage, and adult stage. Even as food is required for the body to grow, even so, the word of God is a necessity for our spiritual being. It is the food which makes us grow spiritually.
When a baby is born, it cannot eat solid food because it is not mature to do so. It can only drink milk, the same applies to everyone who comes to the family of God through Christ Jesus. As a newborn in Christ (that is, newly born again), it is impossible to consume solid scriptures because of the spiritual maturity stage.
When solid spiritual food is consumed instead of the milk of God's word, the following happens;
- The baby Christian remains unstable thus easily tossed around by the enemy. These class of babies easily make up their minds to stop coming to church due to challenges.
- Poor understanding of God's word and errors in the interpretation of the word of God occurs.
The milk of God’s word is known as the principles of the doctrines of Christ and of the Christian Faith.
Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on to perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,
Let us leave behind the elementary teachings of Christ and advance toward maturity. Let us not again be laying the foundation of repentance from dead works and faith in God,
Hebrews 6:1 MLB
The word milk in the above scripture is from the Greek word "gala" and it means, a word metaphorically used for the less difficult Christian truths.
It is not possible for a newborn baby to eat solid food because it has no teeth and it can’t digest it; same applies to baby Christians. When a newborn in Christ is not fed or refuses to take milk and go straight to eat solid foods, a challenging and difficult Christian life is imminent.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines principle as;
i. A basic truth or theory i.e an idea that forms the basis of something.
ii. A law or fact of nature that explains how something works or why something happens.
Hence, principles are the beginning of any science, profession, relationship or practice, the basic truth or theories. That is, ideas that forms their basis and the laws or facts of nature that explains how they work or why they happen; thus, without principles, no science, profession, relationship or practice will exist. Whenever these principles are broken or ignored the deviant goes in for it, same applies to the Christian faith.
Breaking or totally ignoring the milk of God’s word has made a lot of Christians spiritually malnourished and broken by life. When baby Christians start feeding on the milk of the word they grow strong and healthy and cannot be broken by life.
· Hypocrisy and
· Evil speaking.
These are all the nature of the carnal man. A Christian can be carnal though he is still a Christian this because carnality has to do with the mind, not the spirit. The book of Romans 8 verse 6 talks about being "carnally minded” not "spiritually minded".
When we come to Christ and accept Him as our personal Lord and Saviour our spirit become born again, our mind is under renewal (as such, can still be carnal) and our body never gets born again. When a baby feeds on milk it develops and grows its brain to maturity.
Therefore, this implies that a new born believer who feeds on the milk of God’s word renews his/her mind from worldliness to godliness (Romans 12:2) by so doing move from carnality to spirituality. This is how important it is to start your Christian life by feeding on the "Milk" of God’s word.
IMPORTANT SCRIPTURES TO BE MEMORIZED BY EVERY NEW BORN
- John 3:16
- John 10:10
- 2Corinthians 5:17
- 2Corinthians 5:21
- Galatians 3:13-14
- 2Corinthians 8:9
- John 1:1-4, 11-14
- Romans 8:1-32.
- Romans 6:23.
- Romans 3:23
- John 1:17
- Psalms 23:1-6.
- 1 John 3:9
- 1 John 4:7,8, 10, 16, 20
- Hebrews 10:36-38
- Hebrews 11:1, 6
- Genesis 1:1-3, 26-28, 31.
Lord, I receive grace to drink the milk of the word of God as a daily habit henceforth in Jesus name.
WASH YOURSELF WITH ALOT OF WATER DAILY
Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
Ephesians 5:22-32 (KJV)
The water symbolism of the word of God is used for the marriage union between Jesus Christ and the Church. This symbolic representation of the word of God is strictly focused on "relationship", Christianity is a marital relationship between Christ and the Church. Most often, the above text has been used to teach on marriage between a man and a woman i.e husband and wife; but, that is not the focal purpose of the message to the body of Christ. Limiting this text to the teaching of marriage between husband and wife is watering down the potency of the text to the church.
In verse 32 of the scripture above, we understand that the purpose of the text was to explain the mystery of the union between Christ and the Church. However, being a mystery, the preceding verses (that is, verses 22-31) were used to paint an analogy to explain verse 32. In order words, the Apostle Paul used a physical analogy to explain a spiritual truth. Simply put, the text teaches on the marriage relationship between Jesus and the Church, however, reference can be made to it to teach on husband and wife relationship.
Communication is the key to healthy relationships, even as it concerns our relationship with God as believers in Jesus Christ. The most widely understood means of Communication is verbal communication (that is, communication through words). Although other communication types exist, the verbal communication is more widely understood.
It is important to note that, the word of God is the key to having a healthy relationship with God. Hence, to every believer, the word of God is God’s VERBAL medium of communication. With the help of the Holy Spirit, we can hear God through the pages of the scriptures. A believer in Christ Jesus that does not study the Holy Bible we will not have a healthy relationship with God. There are various translations of the Holy Bible that best aids the illiteracy level of every believer.
The word of God as water is the instrument God uses to cleanse His bride (the church, every believer) and make her pure thus without spots or wrinkles. Every time we study the word of God we are cleansed by it. In essence, every time spent studying the Holy Bible aids the cleansing and renewal of the human mind and body from all uncleanness and pollution picked up from this world.
The water symbolism is the second stage of growth in our Christian life; it is the stage of building a good relationship with God at different levels (read Ezekiel 47:1-5). We change levels in our relationship with God as we go deeper into His word. This we are only able to achieve by studying the word of God daily and continuously not just merely reading the Bible once a while, during leisure or at Sunday Bible study.
What are the Different Levels Changes?
In accordance to the revelation written by the prophet Ezekiel in the book of Ezekiel chapter 47, there are four (4) levels of relationship every believer can graduate to in their relationship with God when quality time is invested studying His word.
1. Ankle level relationship: The encounter in verse 3 of Ezekiel 47 “…the waters were to the ankles” is the beginner's level of relationship. At this level, the Christian is just born again and knows nothing about the Christian doctrine (read Hebrews 6:1-2). he can easily leave God due to trials and tribulations. It’s easy to run in or run away from water that is at ankle level.
2. Knee level relationship: The encounter in verse 4 of Ezekiel 47 “…the waters were to the knees” is The primary level of relationship. At this level, he knows basic Christian doctrines (read Hebrews 6:1-2), and is convinced about them so he cannot easily leave God. It’s not so easy to run in or run away from water that is at knee level.
3. Loin’s level relationship: Also, the encounter in verse 4 of Ezekiel 47 “…the waters were to the loins.” is The secondary level of relationship. At this level, the believer knows Christian doctrines (read Hebrews 6:1-2)and also practices them. At the secondary level, it is a little difficult for him to leave God by reason of the word of God he/she has hidden in their heart (Psalm 119:11). It’s not easy to run in or run away from water that is knee level.
4. Above the head level relationship: The encounter in verse 5 of Ezekiel 47 “…and it was a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen, waters to swim in, a river that could not be passed over.” is the Infinity level of relationship. I like to describe it as the level of having an unconditional love for God that is, being over hills in love with God. At this level, the believer knows Christian doctrines (read Hebrews 6:1-2), practices them, teaches them to others and is totally sold out to God and His work. That is, he is lost in God never to be found outside God and, it is impossible for him to leave God. It is impossible to run in or run away from water that has covered the head because it means the person is totally immersed and overshadowed.
· I receive grace to go deeper in love with God through the study of His word in Jesus name. Amen!!
WASH YOURSELF WITH ALOT OF WATER DAILY cont.
That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Another water symbolic representation of the word of God entails SANCTIFICATION. The more we study the word of God we get closer to God and the word of God sanctifies us more. The purpose of the water of the word is to SANCTIFY and CLEANSE the church; this is beyond the milk of God’s word which is for spiritual babies. It is maturity for spiritual adults. Washing daily with the word of God is the act of sanctifying and cleansing oneself daily with the word of God.
What does it mean to sanctify?
The scripture in the book of John chapter 17and verse 17 says, “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” The word "sanctify" is the Greek word hagiazō (Gr37) and it means;
- To render hallow
- To separate from profane things (things that don’t show respect for God) and dedicate to God.
- To purify by expiation i.e by making free from sin.
- To purify internally by renewing of the soul (Romans 12:2)
- To consecrate
How does the Word of God Sanctify?
The water of the word of God sanctifies us by:
- Rendering us hallow (respect greatly): As we study and practice the word of God it makes us greatly respected by others because the word of God gives us authority and makes us act in authority (Luke 10:19). The study and practice the word of God it also makes us physically holy i.e without sin. The more we study God’s word and apply it, the less we commit sin. (Psa119:11).
- Separating us from profane things (things that don’t show respect for God) and dedicates us to God: (2 Cor 6:17) As we study and practice the word of God we get separated from things that do not glorify God. because the word of God makes us hate sin and everything that does not bring glory to God (Psa119:11).
- Purifying us by expiation (makes atonement for us) thus making us free from sin: The blood is the part of the sin offering that makes atonement for sin. “For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.” Leviticus 17:11 KJV. Christ Jesus is our once and final sin offering (Hebrews 9:12) and His blood made atonement for all our sins. Jesus Christ is the word of God (Jn 1:1-11) so, every time we study the word of God the revelation of atonement is given to us and we live free of sin.
- Purifying us internally by renewing our souls: "...but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind..." Romans 12:2. To renew, a Greek word anakainōsis means to renovate, have a complete renewal of your mind. Our minds are used on a daily basis to work and think, no one can claim that he is not thinking. When anything is used it makes it experience wear and tear and calls for renovation else it will be destroyed. So as we use our minds daily we need to renovate it with the word of God daily to prevent it from getting destroyed. Our mind receives both positive and negative information daily from the media (visual and audio), communication and the environment. These information shape our thoughts and make us have “stinking thinking”, so it’s important we renew our mind daily with the word of God to remove stinking thinking form our minds.
- Consecrating us that is, declaring us holy: The Bible tells us"...that we should be holy and without blame..." Ephesians 1:4. God chose us before the foundation of the world to be Holy before Him in love and He sent Jesus to execute this decision of His which Jesus did.
By virtue of the finished work of Jesus on the cross of Calvary, we are Holy and without blame before the father in love. Although this is who we are before God, we can only make this our reality on earth when we study the word consistently to know who we are.
For there is hope of a tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that the tender branch thereof will not cease. Though the root thereof wax old in the earth, and the stock thereof die in the ground; Yet through the scent of water it will bud, and bring forth boughs like a plant.
Job 14:7-9, KJV
In conclusion, when a believer lives by the word of God and lives in the same by studying God's word daily and continuously, such a believer is able to produce fruits spiritually and in every ramification. It means such a believer is able to live out the life of Christ here on earth naturally.
- I receive grace to study the word of God and grow in my relationship with God in Jesus name.
LOOK AT THE MIRROR DAILY
The source of reflection and replication for every believer is very significant hence, must be attended to with utmost seriousness as it determines our relationship with God, the quality of life we live here on earth, and where we spend eternity.
The book of Genesis chapter 3 verses 1-12, reveals that Adam and Eve knew they were naked because they looked at the wrong mirror which was the devil. “...And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.” (verse 7) While Adam looked at the right mirror who is God, he never saw nakedness, because he was clothed with God’s glory.
What was Adam’s true image as told him by God?
Adam’s true image was that which God thought of giving him before creating him and that which God gave him when He created him as seen in the book of Genesis chapter 1.
“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”
Genesis 1:26-27 (KJV)
Image and Likeness
From the above scripture, we discover that man was created in the image and likeness of God, in order words man is God’s image and likeness. In the physical, when you stand before or look in a mirror you see your image. Likewise, as believers, we are only able to know that new creature we have become in Christ when we stand before or look into Christ. This is because when He looks at His word, “the mirror” (read, 2 Corinthians 3:18), He sees the redeemed man (the believer) as His image.
Jesus Christ is the word of God (refer to John 1:1), every time God looks at Jesus He sees the born again child of God as His image. This is very weighty because; Jesus is the very nature and person of righteousness, holiness, perfection, power, prosperity, excellence, success, all that pertains to life and Godliness. Therefore, in Jesus dwells the fullness of the Godhead bodily (Colossians 2:9), so if God sees us when He looks at Jesus that means He sees us the same way He sees Jesus. That is, God sees us as righteous, holy, perfect, powerful, prosperous, excellent, successful, Godly and the fullness of the Godhead.
Consequently, if God sees us this way we ought not to see ourselves otherwise. If we don’t see ourselves the way God sees us it means we are making the same mistake Adam made which was, looking in the wrong mirror that is, the devil. Before we blame Adam for listening to the devil via listening to his wife we must know exactly what the devil told Eve before she ate the fruit.
“And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.”
The devil beguiled Eve by making her believe that when she eats the fruit, she will become "as god". Unknown to Eve, she was "a god" cause Man was made in the image and likeness of God. But she didn’t understand what it meant to be been made in the image and likeness of God.
The devil capitalized on her lack of understanding and used it to make her and her husband sin against God. This is why the Holy Spirit wants to teach us what it means to be made in the image and likeness of God. So we will not fall for the trick of the devil which Adam and Eve fell for.
What does it mean to be made in the Image of God?
The word “image” is from the Hebrew word "tselem" from an unused root meaning to shade; a phantom, i.e. (figuratively) illusion, resemblance; hence, a representative figure, especially an idol:—image, vain shew. This means that when God made man in His image, He made man be a resemblance and a representative figure of Himself.
The word “resemble” means to look or be like someone or something. When God made Adam in His image, He made him look and be like him. And, to “look like” entails appearance while to “be like” entails way and type of life and living. Thus, God created Adam to be an appearance of Him here on earth. So when Man is seen on earth it means God has appeared on earth, this is the same reason why God came in form of Man (Jesus Christ) again to redeem man (Romans 8:3).
God did not and will never have to leave heaven and appear to man in His immortal and Spirit form because man cannot behold immortality and spirits. Also, the terrestrial earth cannot accommodate the indescribable celestial heavenly being called Yahweh. For this reason, in the beginning, God came to earth through mortality called Adam.
Sequel to the truth stated in the preceding paragraph;
- God created Adam to appear like Him, the appearance of God is His glory as seen in (Deut.5:24). The Hebrew word for glory in this scripture verse is “kabowd” it means glory, honour, abundance, splendor, reverence, reputation and weight. God made man to be the physical appearance of His glory which is; glory, honour, abundance, splendor, reverence, reputation and weight.
- Man being the resemblance of God also means that God created man to live like Him on earth. The end part of the verse of scripture we just read says “...we have seen this day that God talk with man, and He liveth.”(Deu 5:24). The Hebrew word for “liveth” is “chayay”, it means to live, have life, be alive, remain alive, sustain life, live prosperously and live forever. When God created man to live like Him it means that He created man to live, have life, be alive, remain alive, sustain life, live prosperously and live forever. Hallelujah!!!
Therefore, for God to create man in his image means that God made man to appear on earth in glory and live on earth in prosperity and for eternity.
Another word used to explain the word “image” is “representative figure”.
Who is a representative?
A representative is someone serving or acting for another especially through delegated authority. Man was created to be God’s representative. God created man to serve and act for Him through delegated authority here on earth.
Also, the earth was created to be an extension or a colony of heaven, and God put Adam on earth to represent Him and gave him all the power he needed to fully represent Him.
This was clearly seen when God gave Adam the following instructions;
- To name the animals, “... out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.” (Genesis 2:19)
- To dress and keep the garden, “...the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.” (Genesis 2:15)
- To eat of every tree in the garden, “the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:”(Genesis 2:16 )
From the first instruction given to Adam, we come to understand that God gave Adam the authority to think and speak for God, as led by God’s Spirit. Before this time, God had breathed into Adam before He told him to name the animals. Also, God gave Adam the authority to cultivate his earth and environment and make it productive. And was given the power to eat what He provided for Him.
These three (3) powers given by God to man are the foundation and fundamentals on which everything in life rests on and all of them were given to man in the beginning. Although Adam lost them, Jesus came and gave them back to every believer in Christ Jesus.
By reason of the finished work of Jesus on the cross of Calvary, every believer in Christ Jesus is the image of God.
The Mirror Symbolism of the Word of God reveals to us that as believers in Christ Jesus, we are the resemblance and the representatives of Yahweh On Earth "…we are gods.." (Psa 82:6). Therefore, we must behold who we are in Christ Jesus (the living Word of God) daily and continuously.
Grace to you!!