Guest writer: Sue Weaver

Fatigue and exhaustion are woven into our days. They make a good welcome mat for chapter five and Piper’s words about the normal Christian life being a repeated process of restoration and renewal.

Teaching that the Bible restores us, Piper points out that it is normal for the Word of God to restore — because it is life. Moses said in Deuteronomy 32:46-47, “Take to heart all the words by which I am warning you today, that you may command them to your children, that they may be careful to do all the words of this law. For it is no empty word for you, but your very life.”

It is sobering-yet-necessary to be reminded that the Word of God is not a trifle, but it is a matter of life and death: if you treat the Bible as empty words, you forfeit life! All life is linked to God’s Word: our physical life is created and upheld by the Word of God, and our spiritual life is quickened and sustained by the Word of God.

  • Physical life depends on God’s Word because by His word we were created (Psalm 33:6; Heb 11:3); He upholds the universe by the word of his power (Heb 1:3).
  • Spiritual life depends on God’s Word because, “Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth” (James 1:18); and, “You have been born again…through the living and abiding word of God” (1 Peter 1:23).
  • And not only do we begin to live by God’s Word, we go on living by God’s Word: “Man shall not live by bread alone but by every work that comes form the mouth of God” (Matt 4:4; Deuteronomy 8:3).

Here’s how it works: the Word of God begets and sustains our spiritual life because it begets and sustains our faith. “Faith comes by hearing,and hearing through the word of Christ” (Romans10:17). The Scriptures also give us hope, which is necessary for life: “He established a testimony…which he commanded our fathers to teach to their children…so that they should set their hope in God” (Psalm 78:5,7; also Romans15:4). And we gain freedom and escape sin through the Bible: “by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire” (2 Peter 1:4, also Psalm 119:11, 105).

At the end of chapter five Piper quotes a wonderful testimony from George Muller’s autobiography. Muller wrote that he came to understand that his number one job each day was to make his soul happy in the Lord. His primary business was to give himself to the reading of the Word of God and to meditate on it. As he shared how this provided delightful food for his soul, he said, “I did not, as it were, give myself to prayer, but to meditation, yet it turned almost immediately more or less to prayer.” When we read and think about God’s Word daily, we grow close to Him and converse easily with Him.

God’s Words are the best words — for growing personal joy, for grappling in meditation, for right-on prayer, for a happy soul ready to face a new day. God’s Words are LIFE!

Guest writer: Sue Weaver