From a “new” book I picked up yesterday, Note to Self: The Discipline of Preaching to Yourself by Joe Thorn (Crossway, 2011). Pastor Sam Storms wrote the foreword and has some powerful things to say about the Word of God preached, read, and studied.
Here is just a sampling:
As if that were not enough, this ‘word’ is ‘living and abiding’ (1 Pet.1:23). It is ‘living’ because it has the power to impart life. It is abiding because the life it imparts is permanent and sustained and never dies. The contrast, of course, is not between the Word of God and literal grass and flowers. The latter are cited as representative or symbolic of anything in which we put our confidence, particularly things that are flashy and exciting and bring initial joy, but over time fade and diminish and lose their capacity to guide us and satisfy our souls, whether strength, power, wealth, beauty, or fame (p.14).
And then after some excellent applications concerning how those in the field of sociology, psychology, and philosophy, etc. try to set the latest trends for the church with regard to how to preach the Word to people – paragraphs that have Storms ending each one with this line: “And through it all the Word of God will have remained true and unchanging and ever powerful” – he adds these words:
The price of gold may rise and fall. The stock market may prove bullish or bearish. Your physical appearance will improve and then disintegrate. The loyalty of friends will come and go. Earthly fame will last but for a season. And through it all, the truths and principles and life-giving power of God’s Word will remain.
Let it be the anchor for your soul. Let is be the rock on which you stand. Let it be the compass to guide you through trials and tragic times. Let it govern your choices and renew your heart and restore your joy and ground your hope. Build your life on its moral principles. Embrace its ethical and moral norms. Believe what it says about the nature of God. Believe what it says about the nature of mankind (p.15).
More on the rest of the book in 2016. It appears to be the kind of book that is profitable reading on Saturday night and Sunday in preparation for worship – and especially for hearing the Word.