Not a prop

The Bible. How do we use it? How do we treat it? Like fancy family china that stays in a box somewhere? Or maybe like a prop?

I loathe the Bible being used as a prop. Loathe.

It is the Lord Almighty’s sacred word to his people through all time and through all generations.

Speaking about holiness, this is what the apostle Peter wrote: “For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For, ‘All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever’” (1 Peter 1:23-25, quoting Isaiah 40:6-8).

To be honest, I get upset when I see other people disrespect or misuse the Bible. But then I remember that I should examine myself first. So I think I’ll offer this prayer. If you’d like, feel free to pray along, making it your own:

Dear God:
We are your people,
the “people of the Book,” as it is sometimes said,
the people of the Living Word, Christ.
Please forgive us for all the times
we have neglected your word to us—
when we have trivialized it,
or misused it,
treating it like a prop.
We are so so very sorry.
Your sacred writings are a gift to us.
They speak of your truth, your love, your hope,
your justice, your holiness, your salvation.
Compel us,
each and every day,
to read your word to us,
to be captivated by it,
to be transformed by it,
to be more and more like Christ,
the magnetic hope of the world.
By your Spirit,
equip us to speak out and speak of
your truth, your love, your hope,
your justice, your holiness, your salvation,
with such utter humility and integrity and passion
that we both experience and demonstrate your radiating light—
for YOUR glory, and YOUR glory alone, and NEVER our own—
for the healing and rescue of the world you love so desperately much.
In the name of the Living Word, Jesus, we pray, Amen.

By Matthew Ruttan

–Bible quotes are from the NIV.

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