AskRob: Question on the use of Scripture for “Life Verses”

Question:

I need to understand in detail how to use Gods word correctly for hope, strength and encouragement. I know you mentioned about how some life verses are not verses to use for life verses. The verse that keeps me going and full of hope is . I use this verse because it reminds me that there is a bigger picture and that I need to press on till the end. 
So how do we use Gods word for encouragement and hope?

I know that I have though about this question too long and I have just determined that this will be one that I will think about for years and revise my understanding of it along the way. For now, let me give you my thoughts on it.

As we think about using verses of Scripture – for any purpose – it is assumed that the Scripture has a purpose and is to be used. Both of these premises are absolutely true. () The question is how and how much? By this I mean, what is the purpose of Scripture and how are we to use it?

Well, let’s start with some other premises:

– Scripture is vast an contains a lot of verses, books and content

– It is implied that since we have a book full of stuff that He wants us to use all the Book

– It has a primary purpose of revealing God to us –

– We know that knowing God correctly is the very most important thing in our lives

– There is always four contexts to every passage – thought, book/author, testament, Bible

These are just a few important thoughts that get me to this point:

Whereas a certain text will have a meaning that is very central to life and living – even to a particular person’s life, it is important to remember that the whole of Scripture is needed to get the whole of God’s message. We would never be ok with only accepting part of God’s Word, and thus we need to make sure that we “use” all of God’s Word in the living of our lives. Now, the progressive revelation of Scripture will have different parts of the text serving different purposes in the whole, or chief, purpose of/in Scripture, but the whole and its inter working parts must be kept in mind all the while.

So, I would say that having a passage that really speaks to you and motivates you is great and what I believe the Lord wants us to do and live and be moved by. However, we must always think of life in light of the whole of the Text and ask how that passage then drives us to live the big picture – how it relates to the other parts of Scripture in all of its contexts.

WE should saturate our lives with Scripture, both big and small portions of Scripture – but, we must be careful to always adhere to the Text as He has given it, for the purposes that He has determined to the end that He desires.

See . . . this is why it has really made me think. I am sure that I have caused more questions, so ask away and let’s continue this dialog.

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And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. (ESV)

16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work. (ESV)

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