“The word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing until it divides soul from spirit, joints from marrow; it is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12
A New Year’s resolution
I have never been very good at keeping my New Year’s resolutions, they usually only last a week or so. But this year I was more determined than ever to persevere and achieve my goal. My New Year’s resolution was to read the Bible every day and so far, only through the grace of God, I’ve been able to do it. I now realise that it was probably one of the best decisions I’ve ever made because the blessings that I have gained through it are truly amazing.
The presence of God
I have tried to read the Bible in an attentive and prayerful way, and I have often felt the presence of God in my reading because God speaks very powerfully through his Word. The Catechism of the Catholic Church paragraph 104 says, “In Sacred Scripture, the Church constantly finds her nourishment and her strength, for she welcomes it not as a human word, but as what it really is, the word of God. In the sacred books, the Father who is in heaven comes lovingly to meet his children, and talks with them.” In the early Church before the Bible was written down the Word of God was passed on by word of mouth. St Paul wrote in one of his letters, “We also constantly give thanks to God for this, that when you received the word of God that you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word but as what it really is, God’s word, which is also at work in you believers.” (1 Thessalonians 13)
Also, I have found that reading the Bible before revising for exams helps me to focus on my studies and I become much more engaged in what I am revising. I believe that this is because every word in the Bible was inspired by the Holy Spirit and therefore when I begin revising by reading the Word of God, the Holy Spirit enlightens me, focusses my mind away from distractions and helps me to study effectively.
Faith is increased
My faith has been strengthened by regularly reading my Bible. When I meditate on the Word of God, my faith is increased through the power of the Holy Spirit. “Faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through the Word of Christ.” (Romans 10:17) In the Gospels I can read about all the wonderful miracles that Jesus performed. “He cured many who were sick with various diseases, and he drove out many demons, not permitting them to speak because they knew him.” (Mark 1:34) This increases my faith because it helps me to realise that God is powerful enough to solve all the silly problems that I may face. The Word of God is the seed that must be sown in order for faith to grow.
Healing and transformation
“For indeed, neither herb nor application cured them, but your all-healing word, O Lord!”(Wisdom 16:12) The Word of God has the power to heal both physically and mentally. By claiming the Word of God when we are ill, we can be strengthened to bear our sufferings and we can be healed. More importantly, through the power of the Word of God, our lives can be transformed, it can renew our mind, sanctify our soul and make us a new creation in Christ.
Weapon against Satan
If we really knew how powerful the Word of God was, we wouldn’t want to put our Bibles down. Through this incredible book that God has given us, we can fight off Satan and all his evil ways. When Jesus was tempted three times in the wilderness by Satan, he fought back by using quotes from the Scriptures. Jesus shows us that the best weapon we have against the devil is the Bible. “Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.” (Ephesians 6:17) In order to overcome the devil’s temptations, we need to use the ‘sword of the Spirit’ so that we can be victorious in the battle between good and evil. I’m sure that many of you have seen the following quote on Facebook and other social networking sites: “When you carry a Bible, the devil gets a headache. When you open it, he collapses. When he sees you reading it, he faints. When he sees you living it, he flees.” So, let us be armed with the Word of God and witness the downfall of Satan!
Written by Rosemary Joy