Tag Archives: written

What Has Been Written #2120

24 This is the disciple who testifies of these things, and wrote these things; and we know that his testimony is true. 25 And there are also many other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written. Amen. (John 21:24–25, NKJV)

Countless books have been written through the ages. The economy and efficiency of the sixty-six books of the Bible are especially impressive compared to books of human origin. These traits of the Bible are faith-building as they teach us to be content with what the Lord has revealed. We do not add to the word of God because the inspired Scriptures are sufficient to thoroughly equip the person of God for every good work (2 Tim. 3:16-17). We affirm the faith was once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3). The Scriptures do not contain everything Jesus said or did, but they are the complete message God intended us to have (v. 25). The Scriptures give trustworthy testimony and ample evidence that “Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God,” so that by “believing you may have life in His name” (v. 24; Jno. 20:30-31). Not every appearance of Jesus after His resurrection is in the Scriptures, but enough “infallible proofs” are there to certify He lives (Acts 1:3; 1 Cor. 15:4-8). The Scriptures do not memorialize every lesson Jesus taught His apostles about the kingdom of God, but later they would preach the gospel of the kingdom as the “whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:24-27). Respect for God’s word includes being satisfied with what God has revealed and being humble enough to accept it as sufficient for “life and godliness” (2 Pet. 1:3-4).  

“Learn not to exceed what is written” #1899

Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively applied to myself and Apollos for your sakes, so that in us you may learn not to exceed what is written, so that no one of you will become arrogant in behalf of one against the other. (1 Corinthians 4:6, NASB95)

The apostle warned the Corinthians “not to exceed what is written.” His warning still applies. What does that mean? How does that happen? Another version translates this phrase, “not to think beyond what is written” (NKJV). We are not to entertain, have a sentiment for, be disposed to, or interested in reaching beyond what the apostles of Christ have written (Strong, G5426). According to today’s verse, this happens when we become arrogant. In his broader context (1 Cor. 1:10-4:21), Paul identified the “message of the cross” (the revealed mind of God) as that which we must not exceed (since it is the power, wisdom, and mind of God). By contrast, the “wisdom of this world” is the thinking that exceeds what is written. Due to pride, the wisdom of this world concludes the message of the cross is foolish. Pride’s deception rejects the apostolic traditions for the traditions that men put in their place (1 Cor. 3:18-20; 2 Thess. 2:15). The “pattern of sound words” is trampled upon as the philosophies, commandments, and doctrines of men advance, plundering the eternal treasures of the gospel in Christ (2 Tim. 1:13; Col. 2:8, 20-23). To guard against this, we must humble ourselves to the gospel of Christ. It is God’s power, wisdom, and mind (1 Cor. 1:23-24; 2:6-13, 16). Thinking that exceeds it takes one into regions of doubt, compromise, and unbelief – places the Father and the Son will never be (2 John 9; Gal. 1:6-9).

Learn not to think beyond what is written #473

Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively transferred to myself and Apollos for your sakes, that you may learn in us not to think beyond what is written, that none of you may be puffed up on behalf of one against the other. (1 Corinthians 4:6)

We can easily become enamored with our intelligence and mental prowess. Pride seizes the heart, convincing us we are the beginning and end of all things wise and good (Job 12:2). How foolish indeed! It is the word of God, the inspired Scripture, that sets the parameters of truth, wisdom and knowledge (2 Tim. 3:16-17). Learn to be content following the Scriptures, not your own will and wisdom. Be careful not to think beyond what is written, presumptuously supposing God will accept whatever you decide to offer Him. Such arrogance perpetuates sin and strife. Instead, endeavor to “keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” by carefully following the Scriptures (Eph. 4:3). Abide in the word of Christ and be His true disciple (Jno. 8:31).