Have you ever asked yourself, “What would Jesus do?” Well, I can tell you what He did. At the outset of His ministry, the Lord stated quite plainly that He had come “to bring Good News to the poor . . . to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.” Then, for the better part of three years, everywhere He went, He told a world full of mixed-up people what God’s Word said about them. From birth, His mission was to bring hope to a human race without hope. Jesus accomplished this by continually explaining and personally fulfilling the Scriptures.
The Bible is no mere history book, collection of wise sayings, or set of mysteries waiting to be decoded by twenty-first century computers. As my friend David Nielson can attest, God’s Word is “living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword.” David is a Pakistani pastor who spends much of his time helping refugees from nearby Afghanistan. One day a Pashtun tribal elder came to him and held out the Bible David had given him a week earlier.
“What is it about this book?” he pleaded. “Every time I open it, I see a vision of a Lamb standing by a glorious throne in front of millions and millions of people. When I close the book it goes away, and when I open it, it comes back. What is this?” David opened the Bible to Revelation, chapter 5, and showed the refugee the scene in his vision, convincing the man that his “book” was truly God’s Word. That episode paved the way for David to open the rest of Scripture to him, guiding him to faith in Christ Jesus. The most fascinating aspect of the story is that God gave the Afghan tribesman a vision that directed him to the Bible rather than showing everything to him supernaturally. This indicates just how important the Scriptures really are.
Look at how the Lord stirred hope in these discouraged disciples. “Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets,” Luke wrote, “He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures,” to which they subsequently responded, “Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scriptures to us?”
Jesus set their hearts on fire with words—words from the same mouth that eons earlier had commanded, “Let there be light,” and set the stars ablaze. He taught them from the Scriptures, because He knew that they were the cure for hopelessness. St. Paul later shared this insight with Rome’s first congregation, telling them, “Whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.”
This is an excerpt from the book, “The Hope Habit” written by Dr. Terry Law. To purchase this book about hope or other spiritual materials for your personal growth as a believer visit our store found in the community menu under “shop”. Be blessed today and know that God is for you.