Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him.
–Colossians 3:10 (NLT)
In order to become more like Christ, we need to be “cleansed . . . by the washing of water with the word” (Ephesians 5:26). In other words, we need the washing of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. The Holy Spirit alone is not enough–it is like taking a shower without any soap. The water might feel good, but you will not be completely clean. You need the Word of God as well as the power of the Holy Spirit.
Now let’s say you jump into the shower and turn on the water, but there is no water. The city has shut off the water because of a broken water main down the street. So now you have a bar of soap but no water. Can you imagine trying to rub that dry piece of soap over your body? You might get a little bit clean, but you would not get completely clean–and it certainly would be an unpleasant experience!
Yet there are a lot of Christians who try to take a spiritual bath that way. They never talk about the Holy Spirit of God. To them, the Christian life is not about exhilaration; it is about information. So they go to Bible study after Bible study. When the pastor preaches, they take notes. They are acquiring all this information about the Bible as if one day when they are standing at the gates of heaven, God is going to hand them a blue book and ask them to diagram the end times. They really think God judges us on how much information we have about Him. Let me tell you: that leads to a dry Christian life if it is only about accumulating information.
The Christian life is not about exhilaration. It is not about information. It is about transformation, becoming like Jesus Christ. And the way God makes us like Jesus Christ is through the Word of God but also through the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God uses the Word of God to unleash the power of God to transform us into the image of God.
Perhaps there was a time in your life when God’s Word had greater prominence in your life than it has right now. When you were more excited about God’s Word than you are right now. In fact, you might be embarrassed to realize how much time in the last month you have spent in God’s Word. You might think, “If only I could renew my relationship with God, then I would have a greater interest in reading the Bible.” But the opposite is true: reading, studying, and meditating on the Word of God is not the result of a renewed relationship with God; it is the means of a renewed relationship with God. If you want to recapture that relationship with God you once enjoyed, the way to do it is through being constantly and consistently exposed to Scripture.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “How to Take a Spiritual Bath” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2011.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org; Scripture quotation marked (NLT) taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.