Despite the convenience of all the new electronic gadgets like Kindles and Nooks for downloading E-books, I still prefer the tactile sensation of holding a real book in my hands. I love turning the pages, smelling the binding, and hefting the weight of the volume in my hand. And I experience special delight when the book I am holding is one I authored, like my newest release, Standing Tall After Falling Short. Here on the pages before me are my own words for all to see.
In Luke 4:16-21, early in his ministry Jesus returned to Galilee and visited his hometown of Nazareth. On the Sabbath he entered the local synagogue, and the leaders there handed him the scroll of Isaiah to read to the people. Jesus took the scroll reverently. His hands touched the bulky scroll and lifted it. (The scroll of Isaiah is the largest among the Dead Sea Scrolls and is 24 feet long!) Jesus’ fingers gently spread the edges of the scroll apart, unrolling it to reveal a passage that began, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me…” When he finished reading the portion aloud, Jesus rolled up the scroll and handed it back to the attendant. “This Scripture has come true today before your very eyes.”
Every eye was fastened upon Jesus. Luke, Matthew and Mark all attest to the fact that the people were amazed and said Jesus spoke with authority. And well he should. After all, he was “The Word” – the one who authored the book!
When you and I teach from scripture, we do not speak as the author, but we too can speak with authority. 2 Timothy 3:16 tells us that Scripture gives us authority to teach, reprove, correct, train, and equip God’s people. Do it carefully. Do it reverently.