When we read verses in the Bible, such as 2 Tim 3:16, “All Scripture is God breathed”, we are reminded of the importance of listening to what it says.
Those words are God’s words.
They are God’s words to humanity about how to live well in the world he created.
In its pages, it speaks about how to know God (namely through faith in Jesus); how to trust in him and also how to act morally and to make good decisions.
In Psalm 19 we read God’s words “revive the soul”, “give joy to the heart”, are “more precious than gold” and are “sweeter than honey”.
Life can be enjoyed so much more, here and now, when we listen and live according to what God says.
We may call this the “good life”.
This “good life” is not merely about obeying a “task-master in the sky” with his list of dos and don’ts.
No. It’s about appreciating that from the beginning of time, God’s way is the best way to live in his world.
And that his ways are beneficial and wise; true and right; and it is only God’s words that lead to the “good life” and thus good society.
The reality is, everyone has a belief system that shapes their understanding of this “good life”.
Some are shaped by different religious beliefs (eg Islam, Buddhism) or by philosophical and political beliefs (eg socialism, secularism, libertarianism).
Still others by having no stated beliefs, which is still a belief system.
For the Christian, the Bible shapes his or her belief system, which in turn shapes society.
It’s not that they wish to force others to believe certain truths or behave in certain ways, but they are convinced that what God says in the Bible is ultimately for the good of society and for individuals to enjoy the “good life”.
If the Scriptures are the words of the creator God, we do well to listen.
■ Contributed by Chris Taylor of the Deniliquin Baptist Church on behalf of the Combined Churches of Deniliquin.