All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 – Scripture of the Day (February 5, 2014)
Let’s break this passage down:
“All Scripture” – that would be from Genesis to Revelation. Even though the laws of the Old Testament were taken out of the way at the cross (Eph. 2:14-16; Col. 2:13-15), the Old Testament must still be studied for there is much God wants Christians to learn from it and be encouraged and strengthened by it (Rom. 15:4; 1 Cor. 10:1-11). And of course, the New Testament is the covenant under which we are, and contains the laws of Christ which we must obey (Heb. 8:7-13; Rom. 6:17-18; Gal. 6:2; John 14:15; Heb. 5:8-9).
“is breathed out by God” – inspired by God. The Holy Spirit of God inspired the writers (2 Pet. 2:19-21; Eph. 3:3-5; cf. 1 Cor. 14:37). So when you read your Bible, you’re reading God’s Word. A message from God. Not necessarily from Paul, Peter, James, John, etc., but ultimately from God. And when your preacher preaches God’s Word in its entirety on a particular matter, you’re not hearing a message from him. You’re hearing a message from God (1 Thess. 2:13).
“and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” – Want to be taught correctly? All you need is the Bible. Need to reprove or correct someone? It better be because they violated Scripture, and not your opinion. Want to be trained on how to be righteous in the sight of God? All you need is the Bible. No wonder God wants us to study it every single day (Ps. 1:1-3).
“that the man of God” – It’s easy to call yourself a Christian, but only followers of the Bible and the Bible alone are true men and women of God.
“may be competent”– artios in the Greek, meaning perfect or complete. Want to be cleansed from your sins so you may be found perfect in God’s sight? Want to be truly complete as far as your Creator is concerned? Want God to consider you competent? Follow the Scriptures and the Scriptures alone.
“equipped for every good work” – On Judgment Day Christ will condemn many who were involved in a lot of good works in his name because in reality they did not obey his Father (Matt. 7:21-23), so that leads me to question whether those good works were in fact good works in the sight of God. A sobering thought. Car washes and bake sales to raise money for the church sound like a good work, but you don’t read in Scripture that the church raised money in those ways (1 Cor. 16:1-2)…so are they really good works? Having a choir backed by a rock band sing to the congregation during worship sounds like a great thing to be involved with, but you don’t read of choirs or instrumental accompaniment in New Testament worship (Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16)…so is it really a good work? Do you want to know how to do any and all works that God would consider good? Read and follow your Bibles.