“This is why we constantly thank God, because when you received the word of God that you heard from us, you welcomed it not as a human message, but as it truly is, the word of God, which also works effectively in you who believe” (1 Thessalonians 2:13).
The Word of God is perfect! It is inspired, infallible, inerrant, and instructive! The Apostle was thankful that the Thessalonians “received the word of God.” When Paul first arrived in Thessalonica, he went to the synagogue and “reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining and proving that it was necessary for the Messiah to suffer and rise from the dead: ‘This Jesus I am proclaiming to you is the Messiah.’ Some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, including a large number of God-fearing Greeks, as well as a number of the leading women” (Acts 17:2–4). The Thessalonians “received the word of God” (1 Thessalonians 2:13) and were transformed by the glorious grace of Jesus!
The Word of God is perfect. It’s also powerful! It is “not ... a human message, but ... the word of God” (1 Thessalonians 2:13). “All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking (it disciplines us), for correcting (it guides us), for training in righteousness (it leads us), so that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16–17).
When Paul wrote to the Corinthians, he defined the powerful message of the Gospel. “Now I want to make clear for you, brothers and sisters, the gospel I preached to you, which you received, on which you have taken your stand and by which you are being saved, if you hold to the message I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I passed on to you as most important what I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:1–4).
The Word of God is also practical. It changes lives in visible ways. When the Thessalonians received the Word of God as the inspired, infallible, inerrant, and instructive message from God Himself, they were transformed. Their lives were changed. Paul wrote, “you yourselves became imitators of us and of the Lord when, in spite of severe persecution, you welcomed the message with joy from the Holy Spirit” (1 Thessalonians 1:6). The Word of God “works effectively in you who believe” (1 Thessalonians 2:13). Like the Thessalonians, we need to be “turned ... upside down” (Acts 17:6) by the power and presence of the Living Word of God.
We should memorize it! With the Psalmist, we should sing, “I have treasured your word in my heart so that I may not sin against you” (Psalm 119:11).
When we memorize it, then we should meditate upon it. “This book of instruction must not depart from your mouth; you are to meditate on it day and night so that you may carefully observe everything written in it. For then you will prosper and succeed in whatever you do. Haven’t I commanded you: be strong and courageous? Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:8–9).
“If you love me, you will keep my commands” (John 14:15). Notice that Jesus didn’t say, “Keep my suggestions.”
Memorize it. Meditate on it. Mind it! ... Words to live by!
All Scripture quotations, except as otherwise noted, are from
Holman Bible Publishers’ Christian Standard Bible.