WE ARE sending forth this first edition of Bible Study for Bereans with the purpose, desire and hope that we may stimulate, encourage, or provoke, real, honest, diligent Bible study among the children of God. The profound ignorance of the Bible among church members is appalling.
We earnestly solicit and covet the prayerful cooperation of every spiritual child of God who appreciates God’s Grace Gospel and who really desires to receive and search the Holy Scriptures without the fear or favor of man or religious organizations. It is needless and useless to appeal to believers whose denominational loyalty and pride, or preconceived opinions, interfere with honest, intelligent and unprejudiced study of the Word of God. So our Bible study is for Bereans.
In making this statement we think of two verses of Scripture: John 12:43 and Galatians 1:10: “They loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.” “If I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.”
It has been repeatedly claimed that more than ninety-five per cent of church members permit church leaders to do their thinking for them, and that ninety-five per cent of their instructors have been so influenced by the traditions of church fathers and by denominational church creeds, that fewer than five per cent of either leaders or followers are willing, if able, to study the Bible with unbiased minds and with open and honest hearts.
Let us ever bear in mind that no servant of the Lord has any new truth to present. Progressive revelation ceased with the close of The Revelation more than 1800 years ago. Since that time, “anything that is true is not new” and “anything that is new is not true”, so far as the inspired Word of God is concerned.
No believer, or group of believers, receive any special revelation of Divine truth, or interpretation of truth, as did the holy men of old who were moved by the Holy Spirit to give to us the holy Scriptures. The humblest, most ignorant member of the Body of Christ, the new-born babe in Christ, has just as much of the Holy Spirit as has the most gifted Bible teacher. Men are not led into truth by the Holy Spirit independent of the written Word of God. And most assuredly the millions of church members, who are in doctrinal error, have not been led by the Holy Spirit into the misinterpretation of the Scriptures.
Human systems of interpretation leave us with inconsistencies and seeming contradictions in the Bible with unholy mixtures, which are displeasing to the Lord. All Scripture is profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction and instruction in righteousness. But all Scripture must be rightly divided for the true interpretation, appropriation and application.
For more articles by Pastor J. C. O'Hair, visit the J. C. O'Hair Online Library.