Jesus described the role the Word of God plays in human spiritual development when He prayed, “ ‘Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth’ ” (John 17:17, NKJV). The Greek word translated as sanctify literally means “to treat as holy,” “to consecrate,” or “to make holy.” The context of John 17:17 suggests the last meaning. Hence, Jesus was praying that God would make the disciples holy by His Word. In other words, by studying the Bible with the love of God in our hearts, we experience a closer walk with God and more fully reveal the beauty of His character to those around us.
Ellen G. White affirms this when she writes, “The creative energy that called the worlds into existence is in the word of God. This word imparts power; it begets life. Every command is a promise; accepted by the will, received into the soul, it brings with it the life of the Infinite One. It transforms the nature and re-creates the soul in the image of God.”*
Revival and reformation must start with us pastors, the shepherds of God’s flock. We must love the God of the Bible to the extent that we will read His Book as a love letter from heaven.
* Ellen G. White, Education (Mountain View, CA: Pacific Press Pub. Assn., 1952), 126.
—Onaolapp Ajibade, DMin, serves as executive secretary, West-central Africa Division of Seventh-day adventists, Abidjan, Cote d’ivoire