In HOPE 9.8

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David Timms

 Prayer for Today

Living Word, touch my heart afresh with passion for your written word. Forgive my indifference and neglect and spark within me a new desire, a burning desire for "every word that proceeds from the mouth of God." Guide me to bind it on my heart, to fasten it to my mind, and to carry it on my lips.

Father, I affirm again my commitment to the Lordship of Jesus and the authority of Scripture in my life. Teach me the significance of such a commitment and grant me your grace as I lean further into it. Amen.


  Hope Happenings

The School of Graduate and Professional Studies is launching two new one-year graduate management programs in June, 2009. The Master of Business Administration (MBA) or Master of Science in Management (MSM) will be offered in a trimester structure and are offered 100% online.

Hope International University
Fullerton  CA  92831


"The challenge -- never negligible -- regarding the Christian Scriptures is getting them read, but read on their own terms, as God's revelation."
~ Eugene Peterson


Without Authority

Two things matter.

We can express the foundation of the Christian faith with two core statements; "the Lordship of Christ" and "the authority of Scripture."

While these phrases roll off our tongues fairly easily, the application of them to our lives often reflects some dissonance.

Each day in the United States 168,000 copies of the Bible are sold, given, or distributed. Yet only a handful will be opened and read with any regularity and even fewer will be studied.

We could probably describe the Bible as the least read bestseller of our time.

While we admire the Bible's historical significance and respect its role for preaching and teaching, many believers view it as irrelevant, boring, difficult, or hard to grasp. And in a sound-byte, image-based culture, that's understandable. Disturbing, but understandable.

Scripture serves as little more than a repair manual. We refer to it when something breaks. But we've pretty much abandoned the idea that the Living God continues to speak through it in a dynamic, personal, life-directing way.

As pastors, teachers, and authors quote verses to bolster their messages, we sense that they've done no more than the car salesman who cites manufacturer specifications. We're glad that the Manufacturer gets a mention in the conversation. It provides some reassurance and helps us feel better. But we grow increasingly content to refer to the Word rather than soak in it.

To limit the authority of Scripture in such a way is to strip it of its personal authority altogether. It becomes just one voice among many, easily rivaled by Dr. Phil, Oprah, or William Young (The Shack ).

In a world that increasingly rejects authority, that insists that each person has the right to self-determination, and that makes ethics a matter of individual preference, the Bible seems archaic to say the least.

But here's the rub.

The Lordship of Christ and the authority of Scripture are directly proportional to each other. A low view of the authority of Scripture, reflects a low view of the Lordship of Christ. Similarly, any rejection of the exclusive Lordship of Christ demonstrates a practical diminishment of the authority of Scripture.

May we fan into flame the Lordship of Christ and the authority of Scripture with fresh, energizing, life-giving conviction.





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David Timms serves in the Graduate Ministry Department at Hope International University in Fullerton, California. "In HOPE", however, is not an official publication of the University and the views expressed are not necessarily those of the Administrators or Board. "In HOPE" has been a regular e-publication since January, 2001.