Have you ever felt as though the Word is distant, or had times when you’re just coasting along, then someone says a verse you know by heart and it jolts you? Why does it do that? How come you feel stronger afterwards? You can see here on my blog the same verses re-running over and over again. You could be tempted to say, “I’ve seen this before, quit already!”
Here’s our verse;
“Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed [is] not grievous, but for you [it is] safe.”
This verse is loaded with Old English terminology. I’d like to break it down to the literal translation according to usage.
“Now therefore, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord. Writing you the same things you have heard before is not irksome to me because it reinforces you.” vs. 1
IF the Word of God does not change, and God does not change, then it goes without saying that we’ll hear some teachings a few times. Paul says here that he knows they know this stuff, but hearing it again reinforces them. It strengthens them. Why?
I remember an old minister say, after so many years in the Word, you’re bound to hear the same teaching over and over. But he always listens with fresh ears. There may be some analogy or better understanding from the person teaching it. There may be some way to make the topic more clear to others. Wow! What a humble attitude! It’s quite a temptation for some of us, who’ve been around a long time, to complain about the same old teachings. We could be tempted to say, I know this stuff, I don’t have to hear it again. That sounds like pride sneaking in.God handles that in another part of the Word.
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;” 2 Timothy 4:3
Or this problem in the Athenians.
“(For all the Athenians and strangers which were there spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing.)”
I know of several groups, and someone who recently approached me, who when they talk about the Word of God they don’t sound like they are talking about the same book I know and love. Oh, they know scripture references… sure. But the sound doctrine is missing. In fact, they are so tied into some new prophecy and some new hidden gem in the Word of God that they don’t look at the wholeness and accuracy of the Word. They even search for the end times signs more than they spend time in the Word studying today’s times. They destroy the integrity of the Word by pulling verses out of context for their own agendas. They slice and dice it to make them sound smart or well spoken. They say, “I’ve heard that before, so why should I continue to listen?”
They also end up being the most confused of all.
Hey, I have a thick noggin’ and I don’t absorb it unless God repeats Himself many, many times. Besides, the more I look into the good ol’ doctrine of walking in love, the abundant life, etc., the more fascinated I am by it. Can you believe all that God did just so we could talk to Him? Not just with the salvation plan, but in our own circumstances. I always want to stay dumb enough just to listen. Isn’t it after you think you know it all, that you really begin to learn. If I were in the Philippians’ shoes and had read Paul’s sincere words, I’d be excited to hear more. God tell me again, and again, and again, that you loved me enough to send your son. Tell me again that I’m worth that sacrifice because it’s going to take a long time before I really believe it. Tell me again Lord that you seated me in the heavenlies. Tell me again that I’m your masterpiece. Tell me again how to walk in the fullness of love. Tell me again that I can have the abundant life and peace and joy and prosperity! Tell me Lord as many times as it takes, and then a million more.
God bless you today!