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What the Word of God Produces in You

March 15, 2019

The word of God is like seed scattered by a sower. The same seed yields very different results. In some lives, the seed is snatched away, like seed sitting on the surface of the path. In other lives the seed gets choked by the desire for other things. You want to be a Christian, but other things are bigger in your life. They have your heart and your attention. The word grows in your life, but it gets choked, and very little comes of it. 

Still, in others, the seed produced a bumper harvest. It can be 30, 60, or even 100-fold, depending on how richly the Word dwells in you. 

Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly. It will bring spiritual life. It will sustain spiritual strength. And, it will produce spiritual growth. If the Word of Christ dwells in you richly, this will happen:

You will grow in strength against temptation  

I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one. (1 John 2:14

John identifies different groups within the congregation in his letter. He writes some things especially to those who are older. Here he speaks specifically to young men. Notice what he says. 

i. The Word of God abides in you.  

The Word of God is going into your soul. It is settling in your inner life and it remains there. The result of this is strength. 

ii. You are strong.  

You started out like little children. At one time you were spiritual infants, but now, even though you are still young, you are spiritually mature. And this then leads to the next point: 

iii. You have overcome the evil one.  

There are victories over temptation in your life. Progress is being made. You are growing up in Christ, and the reason is that the Word of God abides in you.   

This is why it is so important for young families to find a church where they are rooted deeply in the Word of God. You don’t get this by going to a church that entertains your kids. And, you get this strength from a church and a youth group that is serious about getting the Word in their lives. 

You will grow in effectiveness in prayer.  

If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. (John 15:7)  

Notice how effectiveness in prayer arises from the Word abiding in your soul: “If… my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you.”  

The strength of our praying shows how much or how little the word of God dwells, abides, remains in us. Your ability to pray well for your wife and your kids hangs on this. Where the word abides, the fruit will be seen in effective praying.  

You will grow in wisdom and discernment. 

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom. (Colossians 3:16

We live in a ‘how to’ culture in which many people are becoming more and more dependent on someone else telling them how to do even the most basic things in life.  

Once the ‘how to’ thing takes root in your mind, it can be quite paralyzing.  You lose confidence. You feel that you will mess things up unless you can get someone else to walk you through what to do. The Bible has a great answer to this, and it’s called wisdom.  

A rich and regular diet of the word of God will increase your wisdom. The Bible is the Word of God. It comes from the mind of God. Thinking God’s thoughts after him is the best way to grow in wisdom for every area of your life.   

You will grow in usefulness to others. 

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom. (Colossians 3:16

Here’s a healthy church in action: God’s people are feeding on his Word.  It dwells in them richly. As they speak about their lives, they can help each other see how the Word relates to the various circumstances of their lives.  

Someone says, “I am really struggling with my 13-year-old daughter,” and explains some of the circumstances.  

Someone else says, “Here’s what I learned from the Scriptures that helped me. Here’s the principle I applied.” 

Not only are God’s people able to teach one another, but they are able to admonish one another, that is, they can spot where someone is straying down a wrong path and help get then back on the straight and narrow.   

This kind of mutual ministry in the body of Christ is wonderful. It depends on God’s Word dwelling in his people richly. 

How much more useful could you be to others if the Word of Christ dwelled more richly in you? 

You will grow in joy and thanksgiving.  

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. (Colossians 3:16

A rich diet of the Word of Christ always produces more joy and thanksgiving in the lives of God’s people than if you drift through life with your Bible closed. 

Spiritual life is found and it is nourished by the Word of God. But if you ask people the question, Where is spiritual life found? you are likely to find one of three different answers: 

i. The religious or communal answer  

Spiritual life is found and fed in the people around you. This is the teaching of the cults: Join us and all will be well with you. That’s what the Pharisees believed. Don’t buy that one. Sure, fellowship is important to the spiritual life, but it is not a source of spiritual life.

ii. The secular or psychological answer 

Spiritual life is found and fed from the instincts within you. This is the overwhelming consensus of our culture, The answers lie within you.  This is why so many Christians rarely read the Bible. They have bought into secular psychology and they feel that the source of life lies within them.  

iii. The biblical or theological answer 

Spiritual life is found and fed from the Bible before you: 

You have been born again… through the living and abiding word of God. (1 Peter 1:23

Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:4)   

Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. (John 17:17

So, let the word of Christ dwell in you richly! 

Our Responsibility to the Word 

Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly. (Colossians 3:16)  

Let the Word of God be the honored welcome guest of your life. Let the Word live with you let it remain in you. Don’t have a passing brush with the Word of Christ.  

The Word of God can dwell in the life of a Christian believer in different degrees. Let there be plenty of the Word in your life. Give the Word an honored and prominent place in your life.   

Is the Word of Christ dwelling richly in you?  

[This article was adapted from Pastor Colin’s sermon, “The Word of God,” from his series Soul Care, Part Two]
Photo Credit: Unsplash

The Author
Colin Smith

Colin Smith is the Senior Pastor of The Orchard Evangelical Free Church in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. He has authored a number of books, including Heaven, How I Got Here and Heaven, So Near - So Far. Colin is the President and Teacher for Unlocking the Bible. Follow him on Twitter.

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