Do the Word.
Note from the author: This is an excerpt from my message in Linglingay Christian Fellowship entitled “Seek. Do. Teach”. This is also the third part of the series on “Why the Lord’s hand was with Ezra.” You can read the Introduction of this series here while the second part of this series is about seek the word.
This is the hardest of them all. To study the word of the Lord, you need discipline. But to do the word of the Lord you need power! Our flesh is always in a state of struggle and the only way that we’ll be able to apply what we have learned is through the power of the Holy Spirit. This is the reason why it takes time to internalize the messages you hear. From the interpretation of God’s word, you need to know how you will be able to apply it to your life. What are the things that you need to do? What changes in your life do you need to make? Think about the specific action points that you need to set and just do them. Do not delay because the moment that you delay it, you are more likely to forget it. We are accountable to apply what we know.
Knowledge is useless without application. James in his book addresses the issue of being doers of the word. Take note of this. This is to remind us to always be doers of the word.
19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.
Verse 19 is still under the context of the word of the Lord. We should be eager to know the word of the Lord. We should have that desire to know what the Lord is really saying to us through His word. There are times when rather than hearing what the Lord is saying, we tend to act like teachers rather than students. What do I mean by this? Sometimes, we’re so quick to judge the message. We’re so quick in convincing ourselves that we already know what the message is because we’ve heard it before. Take it slow and discern what the Lord wants to tell you. But be quick to listen to his voice.
We are sometimes so quick to judge the message and content that we think we already know the lesson. That is the anger that is being mentioned in verse 20 – the resentment in the word of God because we are having a hard time accepting the truth. We are having a hard time accepting that the word of the Lord is true and this can lead to the revelation of deep sins that we have.
Therefore, to humbly accept the word is to remove the sin in your life. Get rid of all the moral filth and evil in your life. Allow the word of God to penetrate your spirit that you may be able to apply its truth in your life. Because that is what it is about – change. You were not commanded to read the word of God without applying it in your life. As verse 22 says, if you are doing this you are merely fooling yourself. Because without application it is just like reading a sign that says “stop there’s danger” and yet you’re still on the move. It doesn’t make sense. Why even read the sign if you won’t even do what it says?
Christians are also described as someone who looks into the mirror and forget how he looks like because when Christians don’t act promptly after they hear the word, they tend to forget the changes and improvements they need to make from what they have seen on that their reflection. That’s just the nature of man, we tend to forget things. So when you hear the word of God, make that conscious decision to apply it in your life and act on it.
Again, doing the word of the Lord is not easy. But we need to be firmly convinced that we are to apply this in your life. It starts with an attitude that we want to do the word of God. That we can change and want to obey. When we have that attitude, the Holy Spirit will then work and help us do the word of the Lord. Seek the Word of the Lord and then do the Word of the Lord. After that you can teach the word of the Lord passionately!
Here is the next part of this series - teach the word