Submission to Scripture—the key to understanding our worth
Published: 8 January 2019 (GMT+10)
Recently, a pastor gave an illustration about a boy who prayed, “God, I was at a wedding and the bride and groom kissed right there in church. Is that ok?”
Though superficially humorous, his prayer is profoundly mature and worthy of emulation because he already established a pattern of dealing with uncertainty by going directly to God, indicative that he understood God is the ultimate authority.
When facing difficult questions, do we respond by asking God or searching His Word? Or do we think we know best? Such self-idolatry reaches as far back as the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:6). Just as it did for Adam and Eve, failure to recognize God’s authority will lead to a path of sin, death, and judgment (Romans 13:1–2). There’s zero humility in seeking ‘me first’ and what I think instead of seeking first the Kingdom of God (Matthew 6:33).
Wrong thinking leads to wrong behavior
‘Self first’ is often fed by cultural conditioning from the world in which we live and thinking culturally tends to lead to wrong behavior. Instead, we should seek to understand how God’s Word addresses our lives which help us to think correctly, resulting in lives that are honoring to Him. This is a kind of ‘self-programming’ that is exhorted by Scripture. Remember Romans 12:2 that tells us:
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
So, how do we develop a biblical worldview?
To whom am I accountable?
Paramount to developing a pattern in alignment with God’s is acknowledging Him as our Creator. I.e. ‘God first!’ Society undermines this truth with evolution because mankind is the ultimate authority—the pinnacle of evolution! If one subscribes to, or even unwittingly imbibes some aspects of the worldview of evolution, then it is inevitable that wrong thinking will follow. If I am merely a compilation of cells that has evolved by chance, then I am not created and therefore certainly have no Creator to whom I am accountable. But if I am created by God in His image, then He has authority over His creation including me, and I am therefore accountable to Him.
I must also understand that I am loved by a caring God (not a capricious one who used millions of years of death and suffering). This gives me value, meaning, and purpose as opposed to being merely formed by chance. The security of knowing that “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16) helps me comprehend that He loves me and every person on this planet, and that I am created in love and out of love and with a purpose. Such knowledge changes my mindset about myself and others (1 John 3:16).
How can I know that I am loved?
But how can I know that I am loved? I can know that I am loved because the Bible teaches me God is the all-knowing and all-powerful Creator. He says that I am loved, but this concept is predicated on trusting the Bible first.
Two major obstacles for placing trust in the Bible are ignorance of what God says through the Scriptures themselves about the supremacy of the Bible (2 Timothy 3:16 and 2 Peter 1:19–21) and not understanding how we got the Bible. CMI has published several articles and even a short booklet (see below) that helps readers understand how we can trust the historical accuracy and therefore why we can trust in the preserved written Word of God.
As illustrated, the boy’s prayer is evidence that he humbled himself and sought God’s authority and began establishing a pattern of surrendering to the authority of God and His Word, allowing his thinking to align as Jesus said, “Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven” (Matthew 18:4).
If it is Scripture first, then it’s clear what we need to do!