"All Scripture is . . . profitable for . . . correction" (2 Tim. 3:16).
God’s Word strengthens the repentant sinner.
If you're a gardening buff, you know that skillful pruning promotes the overall growth and productivity of a plant. Jesus assumed His audience knew as much when He said, "I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it, that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you" (John 15:1-3).
Jesus was comparing believers to branches, which the Father prunes for maximum productivity. The Word is His pruning shear, which He applies with skill and precision to remove our imperfections and promote godliness. He wants to eliminate anything from our lives that may restrict our spiritual growth.
The word translated "correction" in 2 Timothy 3:16 speaks of the strengthening work of God's Word. Scripture not only exposes your sin, but it also strengthens you and restores you to a proper spiritual posture. It convicts you and then gives you instruction to build you up again.
Job 17:9 says, "The righteous shall hold to his way, and he who has clean hands shall grow stronger and stronger." Paul added, "I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified" (Acts 20:32).
As the Spirit uses Scripture to expose sin in your life, forsake that sin and follow what Scripture says to do instead. You will be strengthened in your spiritual walk as a result. To aid in that process be "constantly nourished on the words of the faith and . . . sound doctrine" (1 Tim. 4:6).
I firmly believe that any weaknesses you have can become areas of great strength as you allow God's Word to do its sanctifying work within you.
Suggestions for Prayer
- Thank God for the strengthening and restoring power of His Word.
- If there's an area of your life that is weak and vulnerable to temptation, confess it to the Lord and begin today to strengthen it according to the Word.
For Further Study
Read Ephesians 1:18-23 and 3:14-21.
- What did Paul pray for?
- How did God demonstrate His power toward believers?
- Is God's power sufficient for all your spiritual needs? Explain.
From Drawing Near by John MacArthur Copyright © 1993. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.