flesh made word
Our last step in reading The Bible is called “Flesh Made Word”. Now what exactly does this mean? You may have read in John 1:14, “The Word Became Flesh and Dwelt among us.” Then in Ephesians 4:10 you read, “He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.” The Word of God that Became flesh and Dwelt among us now Reigns from Heaven to Judge and Rule every other word. The Word of God, like the staff of Aaron, Swallows up every other word. His Story Consumes every other story. This does not mean your story is His Story. No. It means He Is Using your story to Tell His Story. So go ahead and tell your story however you like. But, as Ecclesiastes concludes, never forget that God Is Writing you!
In Matthew 7:24-29, Jesus Gives us insight into His Story. In His Story, He Says, there are two only kinds of characters. One is the wise character who obeys Jesus and lives eternally in heaven. The other is a foolish character who disobeys Jesus and perishes in hell. Now you must decide what kind of character you will be and how you will tell your part of His Story. Will you obey Him with your thoughts, feelings and actions? Will you be an actor who follows God’s Script or an actor who “does it his way”? No matter what you choose, you cannot avoid being a character in His Story. You will either be the wise man who builds on The Rock through obedience or the foolish man who builds on sand through disobedience.
If by God’s Grace you chose to obey Jesus, then you need to know how to follow Him. What does He Mean by, “Do not steal”? How should you “love your neighbor as yourself”? Thankfully, we do not have to speculate. The Bible Is God’s Script. God Wrote all those histories, lamentations, songs and prophecies to show us how to play our roles. This is why He Tells Joshua, “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.” Through The Bible, The Holy Spirit Uses your mind create pictures and movies of the right thoughts, emotions and actions. If you have been practicing the last six lessons, you are now better equipped to understand and obey God’s Word.
But it gets even better than that. As a character in God’s Story, you are subject to the dynamics and rules He Uses to Tell His Story. This means all steps we have been using for reading His Word can be applied to your life! By reading your story in this way, you can perceive and improve your connection to His Holy Word! Now as Paul says in 2 Corinthians 3, Christ has Unveiled your face and Opened your eyes. Yet like the man born blind, you still see men as trees. This is not okay. How can you conform your story to God’s Story if your eyes see but cannot perceive? Therefore, not only your eyes but also your vision must be washed by His Word. And as your mind is renewed by meditating on His Word, you are transformed from glory to glory into the image of The Lord (Romans 12:1, 2 Corinthians 3:18).
How It Works
To show how this works, we’ll continue to practice with Matthew 7:24-29. Grab the summary, list of characters and constellations you’ve been compiling since step 1. Now, take a long look at everything you have written and bring to mind all you have read and imagined. Do you see yourself in the passage? For example:
- Are you the wise man or the foolish man?
- Is your house built on sand or on rock?
- Are you like one of the people in the crowd? Do you marvel at Christ?
- Do you feel yourself currently being battered by the rain and floods?
Questions like these will help you begin to see where your character or circumstances are reflected in the passage. But mere glance at the mirror of The Word can be very dangerous. So take time to examine yourself more closely by the light of His Word. Pray, summarize and make-believe your story so that you can more easily connect the dots between your life and His Holy Word.
For example, it is not sufficient to suspect a similarity between yourself and the foolish man. You must find out how you are or are not foolish. So apply the steps we use to read The Bible to your life by doing the following:
- Pray to God and ask Him to illuminate your character with His Word.
- Open to a chapter in your life. Start with today or yesterday.
- Summarize your day so far or summarize yesterday if it’s too early in the day. What happened in the morning? in the afternoon? in the evening?
- List the people, places and things you encountered. Also list the ideas and and thoughts you had during the day.
- Pray. Specifically, ask God to help you prune and correct your story with His Story.
- Now connect the dots. Look through the summary and characters in your day and compare them with the summary, characters and constellations in Matthew 7:24-29. It may help to ask questions like these:
- Do you believe Jesus’ Summary of the life of the foolish man or are you trusting in your own intelligence?
- Are there any people, places, things or ideas present in your life that are also present in the constellation of the foolish man? e.g.
A foolish man does not consider the rain and storm before he begins to build. Where are you behaving this way? Are you, like the foolish man, blinded by the beauty and height of the mansion you have built instead of being concerned that it is built on sand? Are you, like Jacob or Peter, willing to tear down the house you have built on disobedience and start over by obeying Jesus Christ?
- What people, places, things and ideas need to be removed or added to your life to help you stop being foolish and start being wise?
- Finally, armed with this Word-Illuminated picture of your character, begin to change your actions to do what God Says. Repeat these steps daily and you will soon find yourself looking more and more like the wise man Jesus Described in Matthew 7:24-29.
I encourage you to do for yourself what Hezekiah did for Israel. Destroy all the worldly thoughts and emotions you’ve been using to guide your life. Through The Bible, buy God’s Thoughts and God’s Emotions. As God Said to Joshua, be strong and courageous. In every corner of your life, declare His Word and begin to judge all things according to His Word. This is what we mean by “Flesh made Word.”
Congratulations on learning our final step in reading The Bible. By The Holy Spirit, anyone can follow these seven steps to gain true understanding and glorious transformation as they read God’s Word. Every corner of His Word, from long genealogies to complicated epistles, is already your inheritance. You are now armed to go into His Word take possession of what is yours.