Monday, February 2, 2009

The Word of God is...

two-sided. First reading this statement made me think of a two-faced person. Not really a positive impression. Of course, like anything that man has touched of God's original creation, man has warped the true meaning. For God's Word to be two-sided, it means that God gives both an explicit and an implicit direction. There is both a positive and negative aspect to His commandments.

The explicit direction is usually stated in the negative, "do not" or "thou shalt not". The "not" indicating the negative aspect of what is not allowed. The implicit direction is the positive aspect. If I am not to do such and such, then I am to do such and such.

For example, the commandment "Do not murder" means explicitly do not take another's life deliberately. Do not seek through your actions to cause the ending of another's life. Jesus in Matthew 5:21-22 explained this explicit command as to its spiritual meaning. (Covered in the Word of God is spiritual, governing the internal and external acts of man). This explicit command, the negative aspect, issues from the authority of God as the Creator and Sustainer of Life and it is only His will when a life is to end. When man rejects God's authority over life and takes life, this is murder.

The implicit command, the positive aspect, means you are to do all that is necessary to preserve and protect life as you uphold God's authority as Creator and Sustainer of life. So, you and I are to seek actions and behaviors that preserve and protect life, all human life.

Another example would be the explicit commandment, "Do not bear false witness against your neighbor." Bearing false witness explicitly involves deliberately and knowingly lying or deceiving another about your neighbor. The implicit aspect of this command is to take all due diligence to make sure that your words about your neighbor are above reproach, genuine and true.

As a child being taught the Ten Commandments, my overall impression is all that I am not supposed to do. That part is true. But what a freedom in Christ to be instructed in all that I can do to His glory and for the benefit of my neighbors. It's not about being a "good" person, it is about being an obedient follower of all of God's Word.


  1. I love this. I strive to state consequences in the positive. Instead of:

    "if you DON'T do this, then this bad thing will happen"

    I try to restate it in a positive way:

    "if you DO this, then this good thing will happen"

    Not just with kids either. It's actually one of the steps in that conflict model that I've talked about. I use it in training also. When I show or tell someone how to do something, I focus on the benefit they will see by following the instructions, rather than pointing out the problems caused by NOT following the instructions.

    I know I like to hear things stated positively. It's more proactive, rather than preventive. Promotes ACTION! :)

    Great post!

  2. Ahh...obedience.

    Hi Elle, We are ok here. We couldn't even find a report about mudslides on the local news here at 5:00. We were in treacherous conditions on the freeways today with cars hydroplaning but we are home safe and sound and all is well.. Thank you for thinking of us, I appreciate it...

  3. This doesn't relate to the Word of God and I hesitate to comment here but I thought I'd add that San Bernardino is East/Southeast form Camarillo about 120 miles from us. My brother Steve and Kelly (Kelly is the one with the homeschool blog) are a lot closer to San Bernardino. They are fine too as I saw them at the funeral today. My brother Steve, (Kelly's husband) delivered the English message at the funeral. Hope all is well with you and yours elle...