Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it. (Deuteronomy 12:32)
Today’s big question: is it Okay to squeeze man’s ideas into the Bible?
Today’s passage is important because it established a crucial principle as the children of Israel prepared to enter into the promised land: don’t add to or take away from the words of God. God wanted this to be a foundational concept for the Hebrew nation as they developed in this new land that God had provided. The basis of their new nation had to be that they let God speak for Himself, and they were not permitted to add to or take away from His words.
John ended that last book of Scripture by adding a similar statement:
For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. (Revelation 22:18–19)
This is challenging for us today because we live in a culture that continually adds to and takes away from God’s Word. The first 11 chapters of the book of Genesis are an excellent example of this treatment of Scripture. For instance, many writers attempt to perform amazing “linguistic gymnastics” in order to fit the notion of billions of years into Genesis 1. God has clearly told us that He created the earth in six literal days, yet people regularly attempt to add to that message.
On the other hand, God has also told us that we will one day have to give an account of our lives before Him (Romans 14:12), but many Bible teachers seem to want to leave that part of the message out for fear of offending followers. How much better it would be if they would communicate all of the life-changing truths that God has given us!
God has provided the exact message that we need for life. It is our duty (and blessing) to know and heed every last word!
Today’s big idea: we must take time to study and strive to obey every single word that God has given us in the Scriptures.
What to pray: ask God to guide you through the Scriptures, helping you to trust and obey every single word.