The Purpose of Scripture

“But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is theMessiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name.” – John 20:31

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE READING: John 18-21

If you have been following our Exploration Bible Reading Plan this year, today is the last day of reading through the gospels. These four narratives provide us with an understanding of Jesus’ life, ministry, death, and resurrection. Through the lenses of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, we have learned about Jesus’ miracles, his healings, his calling of the first disciples, his handling of criticism, his betrayal by those closest to him, his trial, his crucifixion, his death, and his resurrection. We have even been given a little glimpse into life after theresurrection as we see some of Jesus’ interaction with his disciples before he ascends to heaven. Perhaps now would be a good time to ask, what are supposed to do with all of this?

Scripture (particularly the gospels) can often be read different ways. One way we tend to read it is as historical narrative, similar to a biography or documentary. Some may choose to read it as fantasy, but I do not believe that is a good way to read scripture. I love what John adds at the end of his gospel: “…these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is theMessiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name,” (John 20:31). Scripture is shared with us so that we may believe in Jesus and live as disciples of Jesus.

St. Francis of Assisi is often quoted as saying, “Share the gospel always; use words when necessary.” I believe that was the desire of our gospel writers. Now that you have read about Jesus and the amazing things God did through Jesus, what are you going to do about it? How will it change your way of living? Studying scripture helps us learn about Jesus; living as disciples for Jesus helps others know about Christ. I hope you will join me in living as disciples (and disciple-makers) for Jesus in this world.

As always, I hope you have a great weekend and I look forward to being with you in worship online beginning Sunday at 8:45 AM and on campus at 9:30 and 11:00 AM!

With Grace,
Matt

P.S. Over the next few weeks, you will be hearing about our 2021 Giving Campaign for our operating budget. I am very grateful for all of you who have continued to generously support the mission and ministries of our church this year, and I hope you will prayerfully consider doing so again next year. As we move into 2021, our focus will shift from One With Each Other to One In Ministry to All the World. If you would like to know more about giving and how you can support the church, I invite you to send me an e-mail at matt@roystonfirstumc.org. On Sunday, November 22, we will celebrate our estimate for giving in 2021.