Listen:  109.4

Over the years, the Lord has blessed the church with many Godly writers.  Most of us are indebted to some of these writers to some degree.  Even if we have not read their books, it’s probable that some that minister to us have read their writings.

Let’s consider the words of the Apostle Paul to Timothy in 2 Timothy 4:13, “The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but especially the parchments.”  It is impossible to know exactly what books and parchments Paul was speaking of here, but it seems logical to say that Paul was a reader of other people’s writings.  One godly, gifted writer of the 19th century, J.N. Darby was once asked how we could possibly be any poorer if this verse was not in the Bible.  Would anything be lost if Paul had not written it?  Mr. Darby replied, “I would certainly have lost something; for this is the verse that saved me from selling my library.  Every word, depend upon it, is from the Spirit, and is for eternal service.”

Although we might benefit greatly from the hard work of these gifted writers, we need to be constantly aware that men are imperfect and so are their teachings and writings.  There is only one book that speaks with absolute authority; that’s the Bible.  All that we read and all that we hear, we need to compare with scripture to make sure it is correct.  Let’s read Acts 17:10-11, “And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.  These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.”  What a wonderful example we have to follow in this portion.  We should search the scriptures daily to make sure what we have heard or read are in agreement with the Word of God.

I, myself, have a sizable library that I constantly read and consult while studying God’s Word.  I am particular about what I read and am thankful for the good books, booklets, and pamphlets I have.  I tend to prefer the older writers for their commitment to the truth of the scriptures and way of writing that ministers to my soul.  I could recommend so many good writers, but there is not enough space here.  Let me recommend one writer and one book in particular.  As a young Christian, I was given a copy of the book, “Addresses on the Gospel of John” by H.A. Ironside.  As a young believer, the book helped me tremendously.  It helped me learn how to glean precious truths from God’s Word.  It helped me learn to compare scripture with scripture to rightly divide the Word of God.  I heartily recommend this book to any believer that desires to begin a study of God’s Word in earnest.  Not only will it help you understand the teachings of the Gospel of John; it will help you learn to study for understanding in all of God’s Word.  I would also recommend most of the many writings of H.A. Ironside.  (109.4)