Peter wrote that God’s “divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us” (2 Peter 1:3). What a statement! What hope this gives us! God has given us all we need to experience life as He intended and to demonstrate godliness in accordance with His will.
And God has chosen to reveal His will through His written Word, the 66 books of the Bible. The Word of God, through the illuminating and empowering ministry of the Spirit of God, is sufficient to teach us everything we need to know to do everything for the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31).
Psalm 19:7-11 clearly explains what theologians call “the sufficiency of Scripture.” David uses several adjectives to describe the adequacy of Scripture to meet the spiritual needs of man: it is perfect, trustworthy, right, radiant, pure, sure and righteous. And as such, when believed and obeyed, can accomplish the following: revive the soul, make wise the simple, give joy to the heart, give light to the eyes and provide great reward in both this life and the next.
Let’s unpack the meaning of these five verses by looking at other Scriptures that collaborate the teaching of Psalm 19.
1. The Word revives the soul.
To revive means to restore, refresh, convert or transform. The Bible contains the message we need to be transformed into Christ-likeness! This is why Paul told Timothy that the Scriptures “are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:15). This is why Peter wrote the “you have been born again . . . through the enduring word of God” (1 Peter 1:23). The Word of God has the power to transform a life through salvation and sanctification.
2. The Word makes wise the simple.
To make wise means to become skilled in the art of godly living, the ability to make right choices to the glory of God. Psalm 119:98-100 is a compelling description of this: “Your commands make me wiser than my enemies . . . I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes. I have more understanding than the elders, for I obey your precepts.”
3. The Word gives joy to the heart.
Again, Psalm 119 says it so well: “I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches. . . . I delight in your decrees (Psalm 119:14, 16). “Your statutes are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart” (Psalm 119:111).
4. The Word gives light to the eyes.
The Scripture provides the light so desperately needed in our ever-increasing world of darkness. Solomon wrote: “For these commands are a lamp, this teaching is a light” (Proverbs 6:23). The Psalmist agrees: “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path” (Psalm 119:105).
5. The Word promises great rewards to the one who obeys it.
Blessing will come to the man whose “delight is in the law of the LORD,” to the man who meditates on the law day and night. “Whatever he does prospers” (Psalm 1:1-3). James reiterates this concept well: “But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it – he will be blessed in what he does” (James 1:25-26).
The Bible is not just another good book. It claims to be the authoritative, inspired, inerrant and all-sufficient Word of God, and as such, our passion should be to read it diligently and prayerfully, asking the Spirit of God to illuminate our understanding of it and empower our obedience to it.
In light of all that Scripture says about itself, shouldn’t we dedicate ourselves to reading it and understanding it?