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The Word: Handle With Caution

rhema highlight

 // Rhema College Weekend Instructor Highlight

James 1:22 tells us that we don't want to be just hearers of the Word. We want to be doers. But what does that look like? And how can we be sure we handle the Word correctly? Here are some cautions—some do's and don'ts—we should watch out for as we handle this Word of life.

 

1. Don't minister the Word from a position of pride.
If our conversation has a lot of words like "I," "me," "mine," and "my"—if we think we have the word for this generation—the alarm is sounding. We may be dealing with pride. And if we're prideful, we're going to mishandle the Word of God. That's why we've got to stay sensitive to the Holy Spirit. He will warn us concerning issues of pride so we can continue to handle the Word
properly.

2. Don't use the Word as a tool to fight.
Have you ever found yourself studying to prove a point? I have. And while there is a place for Christian apologetics, we must acknowledge our motivation. If our motivation is to fight, I'd say "caution." Second
Timothy 2:14 (NIV) says, "Keep reminding God's people of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen." We don't want to beat others up with the Word or use it for the wrong reason.

3. Don't act quickly on limited information.
Zeal without knowledge is not good. We have to match our passion with our level of knowledge and understanding and our development of that good fruit in our lives.

Remember the seven sons of Sceva in Acts chapter 19? They tried to cast out an evil spirit "in the name of the Jesus whom Paul preaches" (v. 13 NIV). In response the spirit said, "I know about Paul. I know Jesus. I don't know you" (v. 15).

I think these men could have grown and developed in their handling of the Word so they could drive out that spirit. But they moved too quickly on limited information.

Jesus' disciples did the same thing in Luke chapter 9. They wanted to call fire down on a Samaritan village that didn't receive them (v. 54). Jesus said to them, "You don't know what spirit you're of" (v. 55)! He rebuked them because they were moving too quickly and handling the Word that had been taught to them incorrectly. Let's be careful not to do the same in our lives.

4. Do maintain a proper attitude and motivation as you handle the Word.
The Word can be controversial, but our attitude doesn't have to be. Romans 14:19 (NIV) says, "Make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification." The love of God should be the motivating factor as we handle the Word of God. And we should yield to that love on the inside of us as we pursue peace and unity, particularly in the Body of Christ.

5. Do fulfill your call.
First Corinthians chapter 12 says that God has placed each of us in the Body as He sees fit. We each have a place. We each have giftings. We each have a part to play, and it's no one else's part.

We've got to know our part and do it. Because there will be a bogging down—a slowing down—if we're doing good stuff that's not the right stuff.

6. Do be bold.
This Gospel that we get to carry and handle is life! This Gospel is the power of God unto salvation, healing, deliverance, protection, and preservation. And we've got to watch out that we're not backing down when we should be moving forward.

We want to handle the Word appropriately, but let's not cast away our confidence. We have the message that will transform the world one person at a time. Let's go boldly, proclaiming this Word. Jesus is alive. Jesus is the Way. He is the Truth. He is the Life. Hallelujah! Let's carry this truth with boldness!

 

 

 

Romans 4:20 (NIV) says that Abraham “did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God.” Many years ago my father, Kenneth E. Hagin, wrote in the flyleaf of his Bible, “God said it; I believe it; and that settles it.” Abraham had this same attitude, and we need to grab hold of it too. No matter how bad our situation looks, our victory is found in God’s promises and in never letting go of what our Heavenly Father has said.
Don’t Be Double-Minded
Often today believers affirm their faith publicly, but when they are by themselves, they begin to question God. They wonder if He can really help them. The moment they start doubting, they begin wavering in their faith.
The Bible is very clear about the danger of wavering.
James 1:6–7 (NIV)
6 When you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.
7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.
Faith does not look at circumstances, and it doesn’t regard feelings. It stays completely focused on God’s Word. Unfortunately, some people allow their situations and feelings to “speak” louder than Scripture.
Some people lose their healing because they stop looking at the Word and focus on what’s going on in their body. It’s dangerous to do this, because before long they will start talking wrong. They’ll begin to say things like, “I thought I was healed. I guess I lost my healing.”
When we start talking like that, we throw out our healing and open the door for the devil and all of his junk to come back in. If we would just stand strong on the Word, every symptom would leave.
Look to the Word
Anytime the enemy bombards your mind with his lies, you must counter those lies with the Word of God. When lack rears its ugly head, read what God said about prosperity. When sickness impacts your body, meditate on healing scriptures. When fear invades your life, find peace scriptures to read. When impossibilities stare you in the face, the Word holds your answer.
Reading God’s promises keeps us focused on them instead of on the distractions that are sent to prevent us from receiving what God has for us. When facing the impossible, we can’t afford to look at whatever is coming against us.
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