I’ve been meeting with a couple of guys over recent weeks. Different backgrounds, different current situations, different struggles. But I’ve been talking with both about the same thing–the need for a lifeline. And that lifeline is the word of God.
But the lifeline is not simply found in owning a bible. Not realized by just carrying it to church. Not even in drawing from our memories things we’ve been taught out of the bible in our past. But found in reading it. Found in getting into it and letting it get into us. Or, as I read in 1 John this morning, abiding in it and letting it abide in us.
Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you too will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that He made to us–eternal life.
(1John 2:24-25 ESV)
Abide. Tarry. Don’t depart. Continue in. Endure with. Remain. Don’t move on to something else.
That, John says, is what he wants his children in the faith to do. And where are they to hang out? What are they to continue in? What are they to tether their souls to? What you heard from the beginning. They were to abide in the teachings of Jesus and the apostles. They were to stay close to the word of God.
False teachers had gone out from among them seeking to deceive them (2:26). An antichrist spirit was about them wanting to derail them. A lying voice denying Jesus as the Christ. A worldly whisper questioning His power to save and save to the uttermost. Religious sounding reasoning casting doubt as to whether Christ alone was really enough for life now and the life to come.
And so John says, let what you’ve heard abide in you. Keep going back to the truth you’ve known. Keep taking it in. Keep chewing on it. Because, when you do that, then you’ll abide in the Son and in the Father.
Remain in the word and you won’t depart from the God who loves you with a steadfast love. Hang out regularly with your bible, and you’ll continue with the Son who rescued you and longs to hang out with you (Rev.3:20) . The word of God acting not only as a tether, but as a life-giving, life-sustaining conduit to the very throne of heaven.
And here’s why. Here’s out it works. This is what’s evoked the awe factor afresh this morning. Because we can abide in the Anointing.
But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge. . . . the anointing that you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you. But as His anointing teaches you about everything–and is true and is no lie, just as it has taught you–abide in Him.
(1John 2:20, 27 ESV)
Anointed by the Holy One with an anointing that abides in us. What’s the anointing? The Spirit of God poured out on every child of God.
Having all knowledge. What’s the reality? Not that we know it all, but that we have access to it all. Access to all knowledge? Really? Yeah, really! We have access to all that we need for maturing in Christ and living for Christ, and it’s in that book we so often can’t make time for.
His anointing teaching us about everything. While teachers have been given to the church to help us learn, we don’t need any teaching apart from the inspired word because we’ve been anointed with the One through whom it was inspired. We have THE TEACHER resident and living in us. And because He lives in us and rests upon us, every time we open our bibles, the divine dynamic of illumination kicks into gear with the same transforming power that raised Christ from the dead.
And so, John says, abide in Him. Abide in the Anointing.
We all need the lifeline. We all need an anchor for the soul tethered to the Son.
And that happens as we open His word and as we abide in the Anointing.
By His grace. For His glory.