“How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent word!
What more can He say than to you He hath said—
To you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?”
HOW FIRM A FOUNDATION, YE SAINTS OF THE LORD
IS LAID FOR YOUR FAITH IN HIS EXCELLENT WORD!
For those of us who believe, Scripture is our foundation. If we’re not careful though, phrases like that can easily become mere rhetoric.
What does it mean to have Scripture as your foundation?
Is your foundation one built on solid rock or on sinking sand, and how do you tell the difference?
What is the foundation for your life? Do you truly see humanity through the lens that God does? When you think about yourself, your marriage, your children, your relationships and conversations, are you seeing each of those things from the perspective your favorite college professor, your mom, Oprah, your pastor, a blogger you like, your husband, culture, or from the perspective God lays out in Scripture?
To truly have the Bible as our foundation, we have to be people whose minds are shaped by God’s Word, which means:
- We have to actively be IN the Word
- We have to be on the watch for what IS influencing our minds & actively combat it
- We have to be sure we are letting the Word inform our thinking, and not just filing it in a separate “spiritual” category.
Do we really see the world, marriage, child-rearing, friendship, our daily attitudes, the way we run our homes, everything about our lives, through the lens that Scripture puts forward?
- is flawless
- teaches you
- is God-given
- is alive and active
- is able to build you up
- equips the man of God
- trains us to know what is right
- brings reproof & correction when needed
- rightly discerns your thoughts and intentions
- quickly sorts out who is a true believer and who just wants to hear things that please them
Do you know God’s Word well enough to discern when someone you like is saying things that do not line up with the Bible?
Are you in Scripture enough to be confronted when YOU have been believing and doing things that are not conformed to God’s standards?
WHAT MORE CAN HE SAY THAN TO YOU HE HATH SAID–
TO YOU WHO FOR REFUGE TO JESUS HAVE FLED?
I love this first verse of “How Firm A Foundation.” I think it highlights a problem of our generation. Many, many people in this generation are looking for “more” that God will say to them, for the simple reason that they don’t like what He has already said. The Bible describes that attitude like this:
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 4:3-4
Sadly I see a great many professing Christians flocking to teachers who tickle their ears. These teachers rarely crack their Bible open, teach messages that are wholly indistinguishable from a business/entrepreneurial pep talk, or openly confess that they “don’t even know” if they believe in God. And yes, I have specific people in mind for each of these things: Joel Osteen, many popular women’s events, and Rachel Held Evans.
It sounds so appealing to our modern sensibilities to have someone who “admits they don’t know,” who “seeks to enjoy the journey, not just arrive at a destination.” We are lulled into thinking, “I want to learn from those who have questions, not those who think they have all the answers.” And to be sure, people walking in the way of the Lord will face questions and doubts from outside, and from within.
To this kind of thinking, though, the Word bolsters us with confidence:
- We can know the one we believe.
- We can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?”
- We can minister with confidence.
- We can pray with confidence.
- God will give us the wisdom we need.
- The truth about God is evident, even through creation.
I am so grateful for the skads of people, both in the past and in the present, who have walked through trials and pain and fear and doubt and found God faithful in the midst of it. I want my heart to be influenced by those who highly prize His Word and deal with it reverently and cautiously, not adding to or diminishing what is written inside.
For me, what that means is that I am extremely cautious about who I listen to, and am asking God for increasing discernment about the articles and books I read.
More than ever in my life I want God’s Word to be the firm foundation of my life.
Nothing else will do.
Will you purpose the same in your own life?
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