|2 Timothy 3:1-9 |
1 Know this also, that in the last days perilous times will come.
2 For men will be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, truce breakers, false accusers, without self control, fierce, despisers of those who are good,
4 Traitors, heady, high minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power of it. Turn away from such people.1 [Their religion has a semblance or form of godliness, but without any power. They deny the power of God to cleanse them, purify them, and make them holy; therefore they have the hope of the hypocrite: to enter heaven, having died in their sins. From the Word of the Lord within: "There is no hope for anyone outside the power of God."]
6 For among them are those who creep into households, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, who are led astray with many lusts,
7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.2
8 Now as Jannes and Jambres [Egyptian magicians] withstood Moses, so these also resist the truth; men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.
9 But they will not get very far, for their folly will be revealed to all men, as [the magicians] was.
2 Ever learning, but never coming to the truth. Bible study, prayer groups, sect services, sermons: Many people have spent their entire lifetimes, listening to preachers, reading books, studying the Bible — but never coming to the truth. There is an eastern religion adage: Do not confuse the finger with what it points to. The Bible is the finger; it points to Christ. Here is what Christ had to say about Bible study: You search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life. But you are not willing to come to me that you may have life. John 5:39-40. He is telling people that they substitute studying the Bible for coming directly to him; the Bible only testifies about him. And they think by studying the Bible to find eternal life, but the way to eternal life is to go directly to him. The words we hear are the words of eternal life, not the words we read or hear read from of the Bible. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life-giving. John 6:63. So, to have eternal life, we have to listen to the Word of the Lord within and obey his spoken words with spirit to us. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. The Bible only testifies of the way, the truth, and the Life. If we want the way, or truth, or life; we have to go to him. He wants us to seek Him, not seek knowledge about him from the Bible. The way to seek God is to go to him, listen to him, and treasure the words we hear him speak to us. We have made learning scriptures a rival to learning directly from God by Coming to Him. But scriptures are not wrong; it is the way we idolize scriptures that is wrong.
The Word of the Lord within told me, "The world hides in the Bible." The world hides from God in the Bible. Reading the Bible is a substitute for having God teach you, examine your heart, convict you, and cleanse you. The world hides from Christ, the Living Word who judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12. It hides from Christ the Light, who brings to light what is hidden in darkness and exposes the motives of men's hearts. 1 Cor 4:5. How sad that we think we are seeking God by reading the Bible, but He sees us as hiding from Him. We are covering our nakedness with the Bible and hiding in the tree of knowledge. Gen 3:8-10. From the Word of the Lord within: "I say this to your shame. Though you have great knowledge of the scriptures and profess them, you don't possess of whom they speak." You search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life, and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to me that you may have life. John 5:39-40. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life-giving. John 6:63.