Hebrews 1:1 “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds . . . “
How does God’s Word come to us? Where do we find it? The Bible tells us we find it in the person of Jesus Christ. God used to speak to us through prophets but no more. This is bad news to the many self appointed ‘prophets’ of today. In ‘these last days’ God communicates with us through His Son Jesus. The entire and sufficient source of that communication can be found in the Holy Bible.
Matthew Henry sums it up nicely; “. . . the knowledge of Jesus Christ is the very marrow and kernel of all the Scriptures. The ceremonial law is full of Christ, and all the gospel is full of Christ; the blessed lines of both Testaments meet in Him; and how they both agree and sweetly unite in Jesus Christ . . . .” Jesus tells us; “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.” (John 6:63)
Some focus on dividing the Word into the Rhema Word and Logos Word based on the translation of the word ‘word’ in Scripture; “There are two primary Greek words that describe Scripture which are translated ‘word’ in the New Testament. The first, logos, refers principally to the total inspired Word of God and to Jesus, who is the living Word. Logos is found in John 1:1; Luke 8:11; Philippians 2:16; Hebrews 4:12; and other verses. The second Greek word translated ‘word’ is rhema, which refers to the spoken word. Rhema literally means an utterance (individually, collectively or specifically). Examples are found in Luke 1:38; 3:2; 5:5; and Acts 11:16.” (gotQuestions?org)
What’s the difference between the two types of Word? GotQuestions?org goes on to explain: “Some charismatics view rhema as the voice of the Holy Spirit speaking to them at the present moment. They believe they should be guided by the Holy Spirit through inner feelings, impressions and experiences. Some believe that the direct words of God to the individual can also be imparted through the words of others, such as a preacher in a worship service or a friend who counsels them. Through these avenues, the Christian experiences God’s direct leading. There is also the belief that the spoken word has more power than the written word, but there is no biblical basis for such a belief.”
While other Christians think the Rhema and Logos Word are essentially the same. GotQuestions?org continues; “Evangelical Christians, however, have a much different understanding of rhema, believing that it is essentially synonymous with logos. In other words, the specific guidance we receive from the Holy Spirit at any given time can only be discerned by the general principles laid down in the Bible. Where the Bible is silent on specifics—such as where a young person should go to college—then the Christian applies biblical principles (good stewardship of God-given resources, protecting one’s heart and mind from godless influences, etc.) to the situation and thereby arrives at a decision.”
What does Jesus say? Jesus says His Word is everlasting; “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.” (Matthew 24:35) His spoken words recorded for us in Scripture are spirit and life. (John 6:63) If we abide by Jesus’ Word we are His true disciples; “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” (John 8:31,32) If we keep His Word, we show we love Him and God will make His Home with us; “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him.” (John 14:23)
And here is the real issue – We must keep His Word – not subtract from it or add to it. If our inner thoughts, feeling, and impressions notify us that we are getting some word – how do we know it comes from the Holy Spirit or our carnal nature or acid reflux? We must know Scripture and make sure our thoughts, impressions and feelings line up with Scripture. The Bible is the standard by which we can assess what self appointed ‘prophets’ or ‘apostles’ tell us. Jesus tells us clearly that we will be given a Helper with this very important task of discerning; “When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify about Me” (John 15:26) A true Word from the Holy Spirit will always point to Jesus and His example first and foremost!
We can and should go to God for help and advice in prayer and/or seeking answers in the Bible. God will answer and His guidance will always align with Scripture and affirm Jesus. Any true Word from God doesn’t arise out of the random firing synapses in our brains (our flesh). Rather a Word will come from the Holy Spirit and provide a revelation in which Jesus is high and lifted up and not what particular car we should to buy or what we should wear today. Jesus tells us not to worry about such things. (Matthew 6:25-34). We know we will get Rema Words from God because Jesus tells us; “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.” (John 14:26) Jesus is telling us that the Holy Spirit will reinforce God’s Word in our minds and not feed us ‘a new word.’
We must not invent or seek new words for guidance and direction and then say that God gave this word to us; “But shun profane and idle babblings, for they will increase to more ungodliness. And their message will spread like cancer. . . ” (2 Timothy 2:16,17) The Holy Bible covers all. The apostle Paul tells us; “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16,17)
God is very clear about messing with His Word; “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” (Revelation 22:18,19) Some say that this pertains only to the last book of the Bible. John Wesley points out; “This may likewise be considered as an awful sanction, given to the whole New Testament; in like manner as Moses guarded the law, Deuteronomy 4:2, and Deuteronomy 12:32; and as God himself did, Malachi 4:4, in closing the canon of the Old Testament.”
The power and glory of God’s Word comes from God’s Word anything else just robs us of life and liberty. Jesus says; “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” (John 8:31,32)
Come Lord Jesus!