by Marilynn Chadwick
This is the disciple who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. John 21:24 (NIV)
Let's take a minute to consider the written word. Think about how different your life would be if you could not read or write. And how would our beliefs even exist if no one had captured the Scriptures in written form? We complete our 21 Day Experiment with a reading of John’s final chapter. I hope you've set aside some time to reflect on what you've been reading. Have you noticed God's presence in special ways? Are you seeing any answers to prayers, large or small?
John repeatedly tells us the reason for his eye-witness account of Jesus—so that we would believe Jesus is the Messiah (John 20:31). John ends his record with these solemn words and my watchword for today: “This is the disciple who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. We know that his testimony is true” (John 21:24).
John goes on to tell us that Jesus did other miracles and that if "every one of them were written down…the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written” (v. 25).
The Greek word for "written" is grapho. We find the phrase "it is written" sprinkled throughout the New Testament. This phrase carries the implied weight of Scriptural authority. Remember how Jesus resisted the devil's alluring temptations to power and personal glory with the words, "It is written..." (Matthew 4:10).
Jesus wielded Scripture as his sword and his shield of authority against the tempter's wiles. The devil and his minions still tremble at God's written (and spoken) Word. If Jesus needed to wield the "sword" of the written Word, how much more do we?
In my reading of John, I am reminded of my inability to withstand the battles of life without the power of the Holy Spirit, the presence of Jesus, and His Word. Moreover, this same written Word "feeds" my soul as food feeds my physical body.
Moving forward from our 21 Day Experiment. I challenge you to make the reading of God's Word the top priority of your day. Your power in prayer correlates with your relationship with the "written Word." When you read and believe the words of Scripture, your faith grows (Romans 10:17) and you find yourself on solid ground to claim God’s promises and withstand the devil's attacks.
Recently a friend of mine, one of the busiest women I know, told me of her life transformation since she made her morning "quiet time" her priority. I agree. There is something extraordinary that begins to happen in our life of prayer and our relationship with God when we give him the first fruit of our day.