Some of you reading the Bible through this year may be struggling to keep up, wondering if it is worth it. (It IS!!) Some of you may be able to encourage others to keep going. (Please DO!!!) This Bible reading plan (see the link in the column to the right) is structured with a few days at the end of each month to catch up or review. Here’s John Piper, with a word of encouragement, “Helping Each Other Endure to the End”-
Then Bonhoeffer comes to a very solemn point that I want to emphasize this morning. He writes,
If somebody asks [a Christian], Where is your salvation, your righteousness? he can never point to himself. He points to the Word of God in Jesus Christ, which assures him of salvation and righteousness. He is as alert as possible to this Word. Because he daily hungers and thirsts for righteousness, he daily desires the redeeming Word . . .
But God has put this Word into the mouth of men in order that it may be communicated to other men. When one person is struck by the Word, he speaks it to others. God has willed that we should seek and find His living Word in the witness of a brother, in the mouth of a man. Therefore, the Christian needs another Christian who speaks God’s Word to him. He needs him again and again when he becomes uncertain and discouraged, for by himself he cannot help himself without belying the truth. He needs his brother man as a bearer and proclaimer of the divine word of salvation. He needs his brother solely because of Jesus Christ. The Christ in his own heart is weaker than the Christ in the word of his brother; his own heart is uncertain; his brother’s is sure. (Life Together, pp. 11-12)
The Means of Persevering to the End
Turn with me to Hebrews 3:12. I want to show you from Scripture how true and essential Bonhoeffer’s words are for us today at Bethlehem. The question to ask yourself as we read these verses is: How important is it to live with other Christians in such a way that I can give to them and receive from them the Word of God every day?
Take care, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we share in Christ, if only we hold our first confidence firm to the end.