Suggested Reading: 2 Timothy 3:14-17
“All Scripture is…useful.” (2 Tim. 3:16)
The Bible is meant to be understood and followed as a whole, not solely in scattered parts. Look at Romans 8:28, the part about everything working out for my good is very pleasing to my taste-buds but what about verses 18-27? There I find content concerning suffering, future glory, weaknesses, and my great Intercessor. One verse is great, but consumed as a whole, it takes on new life, new meaning, and affects my heart the way it was intended.
I’ve discovered many books have provided unique applications when I understand the author, the audience, and the culture. All of these facts help paint a picture of the circumstances the passages were written under and enhance their purpose.
Can I take and eat a bell pepper?
But if I take the same pepper, follow the recipe,
and use them as directed,
I create a masterpiece of delight for my taste-buds.
This not only pleases me, but those around me benefit.
The Bible is my recipe book for life. Each ingredient (verse) tastes good on its own and serves a purpose to my spiritual health, but when I choose to take the time to understand the entire recipe, how it fits together, what its completed picture looks like, and how to get there, the individual ingredients take on new life.
As I follow the recipe I get a result very similar to the original intent: a life manifesting the characteristics of Jesus, living under the influence of the Holy Spirit.
Is the completed picture a perfect resemblance of the original?
No, it can’t be perfect, but it can be close!
One day the Master Chef will create in me that perfect glorified manifestation of his recipe book, and then I will look, feel, and taste exactly how I was meant to. Until then, I can follow the recipe as it was designed, as a whole, and resemble a likeness very similar to the One who created it.