In today’s video Rudy Ross explains the problem in Ephesus from a Jewish perspective and I look at it through the eyes of a Gentile. That’s what makes studying the Bible with Rudy a lot of fun.
If you are interested in the historical situation, please visit our video on the Bob Spradling YouTube channel.
Paul wrote this to Timothy.
“They forbid marriage and abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.
“For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, provided it is received with thanksgiving, for it is sanctified by God’s word and by prayer (1 Timothy 4.3-5).
My article today will focus on the last phrase of this verse.
Set Apart by God’s Word
I occasionally drove a truck during my college years. I fondly remember getting directions to an out-of-the-way gas station.
I was told to look for a big oak tree and a gravel road on a particular highway. I followed the directions and found the place I was looking for.
Recently, Toni and I drove to California to visit her family. GPS on my phone allowed us to navigate many country roads that took us around a considerable amount of road construction.
I’m so glad that I didn’t have to look for oak trees and gravel roads to find our destination.
With this illustration in mind, think about the Bible. God has given us clear directions that lead to life.
Jesus said, “The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life” (John 6.63).
In his second letter to Timothy, Paul connected the dots. The Spirit, God’s written word, and life go together for human good.
“All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,
“So that the person of God may be proficient, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3.16-17).
The Bible is a map, inspired by God, and useful to show us the way to the best life possible.
Trust the Book
Our travel through Bakersfield California is a good example of trusting while wondering about the directions.
Toni and I changed streets and made numerous turns when we drove through Bakersfield. I expect the changes were due to road construction or repairs.
We left a major highway to travel a few blocks on a surface street. That street led to a ten-mile drive on a road designed for farmers. Another farm-to-market road led to a winding road through a hilly region.
Toni and I kept commenting to each other about the adventure we were having when we eventually ended up on 101 Highway and not too far from our destination.
We trusted GPS and it didn’t let us down.
When we follow God’s instructions, they may seem difficult or confusing. We may wonder where God is leading us.
We have the assurance of centuries of church history that if we faithfully follow the directions, God will get us to our destination – the best life possible.
Are You Reading?
Last Saturday, Toni and I traveled to Kansas to watch our grandsons play soccer. We’ve been to the soccer field one other time and I didn’t think we needed the help of GPS. Wrong!
After seeing a few streets of Baldwin City that don’t have a soccer field, Toni pulled up GPS on her phone and got us there.
If we think we know the answers to how to live an abundant life and don’t check the map, we’ll be as lost as we were last week.
The daily reading of the Bible will provide us insight into God’s agenda for us. Aligning our lives with his guidance is as essential as knowing what roads to take to Kansas or California,
What about Prayer?
Prayer is God’s vehicle for a personal relationship. Prayer includes talking and listening to God, just as with any other conversation.
I find that talking to God about what I am reading is the best way to communicate with him.
I believe you will find that regular reading of the Bible and prayer will guide you to the best life possible.
Rudy Ross and I talk about this passage today on YouTube. You can see the video on the Bob Spradling channel.
Please email your prayer request to firstname.lastname@example.org. The Maywood prayer team will pray for you.