My imaginary cousin, William Wallace Wishum (or Willy Wally as he’s better known) recently had surgery. As he was being prepped, a doctor entered with a syringe.
"What’s that?” asked Willie’s wife Wilhemena.
The doctor explained, "This is an anesthetic. After he gets this he won't know a thing."
"Save your time, Doc," exclaimed Wilhemena. "He don't know nothing now."
Hopefully, that’s not true of us. There are many things we need to know, not least among them being what God requires of us. Yes, he does have requirements, and perhaps that’s the first thing we should know. God has never promised to freely rain universal forgiveness and salvation on us whether we seek it or not. Instead, he requires something of us, so it would be very wise to learn what those requirements are.
The prophet Jeremiah once quoted God lamenting, “Even the stork in the sky knows
her appointed seasons, and the dove, the swift and the thrush observe the time of their migration. But my people do not know the requirements of the Lord” (Jeremiah 8:7).
The problem then, as now, was not a lack of information. Jeremiah notes, “we have the law of the Lord." The problem was that some had distorted the requirements. “Actually the lying pen of the scribes has handled it falsely,” Jeremiah tells us (8:8). And, apparently, most had not bothered to check for themselves.
Hosea uttered the same complaint from God: “my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge” (Hosea 6:8). Again, there was no lack of information, only a lack of interest. “You have ignored the law of your God,” Hosea explains.
Americans have Bibles. One report says that 92% of American homes have a Bible inside, with the average home having three. We carry it in our phones. However, according to Gallup Polls, only 37% of Americans read from the Bible even once a week, and only 16% read daily. Fewer still participate in any kind of study group.
What about you and me? Do we put our Bibles to good use so that we know what the Lord requires? Or, do we allow them to collect dust. Writer Woodrow Krull suggests, “If Christians blew the dust off their Bibles at the same time, we’d all be killed in the dust storm.”
I’m sure we would survive that storm, and the resulting knowledge would be healthy. Let’s dust them off and read our Bibles today.