Abide in My Word
"If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free" (John 8:31-32).
What is it to abide in the Word of Jesus? It is more than simply reading it. Jesus said of the one who read His Word but did not obey it, that he was like a man who built his house on sand. No matter how strong the walls, how great the architecture, that building is subject to destruction under the weather patterns of life. James also spoke of the man who only heard the Word of God, but did not obey it, saying that this man was self-deceived.
To abide in the Word means to live in it, by it, upon it, and through it. Abiding is to have the Lord's Word set the principles, practices, purposes, and promises of our life. We live according to the standards of the Word of God. We obey the Word. We regard its priorities as binding. We esteem love, prayer, and faith. We believe that God will render justice. We do not avenge ourselves. We believe in forgiveness.
The Bible sets the practices of our life. What we do and don't do is regulated by the Word of God. We don't lie. We don't cheat. We don't steal. We don't defraud others. We pray. We study the Word. We fellowship. We love. We reach out to others. We forgive. We do not hold grudges. We seek to follow the example of Jesus. We do all we do in the name of Jesus.
We live for Jesus. Every one of our actions is measured by the standard of pleasing the Lord. We recognize that we live for higher purposes, according to a heavenly call. Our mundane activities have eternal purposes attached to them. We seek to bless and honor the Lord Jesus in everything.
We believe that God honors our trust in Him. We believe in the divine supply of God. We do not measure tasks by our resources, or the resources of others. Rather we are convinced that our God is able to supply all our needs according to His riches in glory. We are fully persuaded that there is a paradise exceeding the greatest glory of the earth, prepared for us in the unseen reality. We are sure that our Father, who sees our secret, godly practices, will reward us openly.
There are many who pick and choose among the principles, practices, purposes, and promises of the Lord. They adhere to some and ignore others. These are not disciples. Followers? Perhaps. Their foundation is weak at best. However, those who are completely dedicated to the teaching and instruction in the Word are the disciples of the Lord.
To abide in the Word of God is to live by its principles, practices, purposes and promises even when circumstances around us scream out that all is in vain. Even when there is sacrifice, death, humiliation, or frustration in the ways of the Word, we stand, we wait, and we hold on.