Last time we looked at the power of God’s word, in creating the world and controlling the world through God’s spoken word. Today I’ll explore how God’s word is authoritative. Unfortunately for too long some teachers/preachers/scholars have understood and thought of God’s word as only power. However, God’s word is also language. Why is this important? If God’s word is only power but not language, then it cannot speak authoritatively to us on a personal level. Which is exactly what liberal theology is about today, a word without authority.
Look again at the creation story and you’ll see God’s word had meaning and authority, not just power. God didn’t just bring all things into being, God also named them… light God called “day”, darkness God called “night.” On five separate events of creation, God calls created things by the names He gave them. When God controls the course of nature it is not only powerful, but also wise (Psalm 104:24).
So, here’s the thing.
God’s spoken word, (meaningful speech), is authoritative over all His creatures. Remember, because God is LORD, His speech is authoritative, and His creatures are obligated to obey Him. We can really only do this correctly when we believe Him. The entirety of Scripture is the story of how God speaks, and how man responds to what God says… either in obedience, or rebellion.
The Fall… demonstrates the first humans disobeying God’s word, and the consequences which result. Yet, over and over and over, time and again, God continues to send His word into the world to communicate with mankind. Sometimes people do hear, believe, and obey: Noah built an ark, Abram left his home country to become the father of many nations. And other times people disobey God’s authoritative word and suffer extreme consequences. So the main question is whether people will hear, comprehend, believe God’s word at authoritative, and be obedient.
Let’s not leave out the New Testament version of this truth.
Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.
For those living in the world today the words of Jesus must be our foundation. We are to hear them, read them for ourselves, understand them, believe them, and act obediently to what they convey. Here’s a short list of the authoritative words of Jesus to live by:
Luke 8:21; 9:26
John 5:24; 6:63, 68; 8:31, 37, 43, 47; 12:47-50; 14:10, 15, 21, 23-24; 15:3, 7, 10, 14; 17:6, 14, 17 1 Timothy 6:3-4
1 John 2:3-5; 3:22; 5:2-3;
2 John 6; and
Revelation 12:17; 14:12
Simply put, to be a true Christ-follower, to be a genuine person of faith, means that we come under the meaningful, authoritative word of God the Father, Jesus the Son, and all those prophets and apostles who recorded that word through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Surrendering to the authoritative word of God means we believe it, and act in obedience to it.
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