This blog is based on the transcript of a sermon preached by Jimmy Chrisman at Liberty Avenue Baptist Church, Berea, KY, on June 1, 1975; and edited on October 17, 2020 for this blog by J. David Chrisman.
Isaiah 55:8-13 (NKJV): 8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. 9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. 10 “For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, And do not return there, But water the earth, And make it bring forth and bud, That it may give seed to the sower And bread to the eater, 11 So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void [empty; without fruit], But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. 12 “For you shall go out with joy, And be led out with peace; The mountains and the hills Shall break forth into singing before you, And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. 13 Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree, And instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree; And it shall be to the Lord for a name, For an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”
Hebrews 4:12-13 (NKJV): 12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.
The great reservoir of the power thar belongs to God is in His Word – the Bible. David said in Psalm 62:11 that power belongs to God. If we wish to make it ours, we must go to that Book. Yet people abound in the church who are praying for power and neglecting the Bible. They are longing to have power for fruit-bearing in their own lives and yet forget that Jesus taught “the seed is the Word of God” (Luke 8:11). They are longing to have power melt the cold heart and break the stubborn will; and yet forget that God has said, “Is not my Word like a fire… and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?” (Jeremiah 23:29).
If we are to obtain fullness of power in life and service, we must feed upon the Word of God. There is no other food so strengthening. If we will not take time to study the Bible, we cannot have power any more than we can have physical power if we will not take time to eat nutritious food.
In Romans 1:16, Paul states, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes…” He is saying here that the Word of God is like dynamite. It can break a sinner’s hard heart and it can change the sinner’s life completely.
Let us examine more of what the Word of God has the power to do…
The Word of God has power to convict. When we read or hear the Word of God, it has the power to affect us like no other book we may read. It lays bare the hidden things of the heart and the unknown things that make us unclean and it reveals the character of God in a way that nothing else in creation can.
Acts 2:37: Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”
King Josiah heard the Word of God and he became convicted of his sin and he turned to God and the people under him followed his example (2Chronicles 34)
King David heard the Word of God about his sin and repented (Psalm 51)
The Word of God can speak conviction to the unregenerate heart like nothing else.
The Word of God has power to regenerate. When God’s Word penetrates the heart, it brings light and life.
1Peter 1:22-25 – 22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere [unhypocritical] love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, 23 having been born again, not of corruptible [perishable] seed but incorruptible [imperishable], through the word of God which lives and abides forever, 24 because “All flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers, and its flower falls away, 25 But the word of the Lord endures forever.” Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.
James 1:18 – Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.
If you wish to be born again, the way is very simple. Believe what the Bible says about the Lord and trust One it speaks about. John 20:30-31 – 30 And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.
The Word of God has power to produce faith. You can never get faith by praying alone. You can never get faith by an effort of your will. Faith is the product of a certain cause – and that cause is the Word of God.
Romans 10:17 – So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
The Philippian jailer in Acts 16:30 – And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
Isaiah 53:6 – All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
The Word of God has power to cleanse. The Word of God has power not only to take impurity out of the heart, but to cleanse the outward life as well. If you wish a clean outward life, you must wash often by bringing your life into contact with the Word of God.
Ephesians 5:25-26 – 25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify [set apart] and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word.
The Word of God has power to build up. If you want to find out how you can have a good personality, read the Word of God. Reading the Bible will help you build your character.
Acts 20:32 – “So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
2Peter 1:5-9 – 5 But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance [patience], to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren [useless] nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.
2Timothy 3:14-17 – 14 But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, 15 and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction [training, discipline] in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Psalm 119:130 – The entrance of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple.
The Word of God has power to give assurance of eternal life.
1John 5:13 – These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.
John 10:27-30 – 27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. 30 I and My Father are one.”
The Word of God has power to bring peace into the heart.
Psalm 85:8 – I will hear what God the Lord will speak, for He will speak peace to His people and to His saints; but let them not turn back to folly [foolishness].
Romans 8:28 – And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
The Word of God has power to produce joy.
Jeremiah 15:16 – Your words were found, and I ate them, and Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; for I am called by Your name, O Lord God of hosts.
John 15:11 – “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.
The Word of God has power to produce patience, comfort, and hope.
Romans 15:4 – For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience [perseverance] and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.
The Word if God has power to protect from error and sin.
2Timothy 3:13-15 – 13 But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, 15 and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
Any day we neglect to feed on the Word of God, we leave an open door through which Satan is sure to enter into our hearts and lives.
We cannot obtain power and we cannot maintain power in our lives and in our work for others unless there is a deep and frequent meditation upon the Word of God.
Psalm 1:1-3 – Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the [wicked] ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; 2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he [ponders] meditates day and night. 3 He shall be like a tree Planted by the [channels] rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper. Yes, the Word of God has power to change your entire outlook on life. It can give you a new direction in which to begin traveling in your life.
The Word is God’s dynamite – to be used in helping to change your life and to keep you changed.
Do you really believe the Word of God?
© 1975 by Jimmy Chrisman
© 2020 by J. David Chrisman
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.