Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:31-32
The two verses above contain some of the most powerful truths of the Christian faith. And because Jesus said it Himself, we should take it very serious.
To abide in His Word means you dwell there – spend much time in it, studying it, and meditating on it. There is only one way to abide in the Word, and that is to have the Word abide in you. James explains how it works:
Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. James 1:21
Abiding in the Word is to “implant” it into your mind with meekness – not with resistance or rebellion, but accepting it for what it is. It also means to receive the Word with the understanding that it means good to you.
How do we become disciples of Jesus? By abiding in the Word. The word “disciple” means “student.” Jesus wants us to become students of His Word.
As students of the Word we discover truths, and those truths, Jesus said, make us free. It is amazing how Christians will look for freedom everywhere but the Word. I have seen, both in my years as a pastor and in my years in secular employment, that people with problems look for others with the same problem to seek advice from them. There is no freedom in that!
The Word of God can set you free from your troubles.
The Word abides in us when it is planted in our minds; the Holy Spirit, who inspired the writers of the Bible, uses that implanted Word to teach us a way out of those problems.
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. John 14:26
Apostle Paul also wrote about this:
No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. 1 Corinthians 10:13
Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep Your word. Psalm 119:67
My soul clings to the dust; revive me according to Your word. I have declared my ways, and You answered me; teach me Your statutes. Psalm 119:25-27
It takes time to study the Bible, and it is hard for those who look for quick answers. Sometimes people ask for prayer to solve their problems, and God loves to answer our prayers, but if you continue along the path that brought you into trouble, you will end up there again. The Word will change the way you see things, then change the way you do things, and so lead you down a path of blessing.
Always approach God’s Word with faith, believing that He wants to add good things to your life. Some people read the Bible to see how they can raise a question or two about it, but that is how doubt works. Doubt will always look for a way out, but “he who goes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. (Hebrews 11:6)
Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper. The ungodly are not so, but are like the chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the ungodly shall perish. Psalm 1