Summary: A message about the importance of the Bible in our daily lives.
DUST ON THE BIBLE
INTRO: An old gospel song has a stanza that says, “Dust on the Bible, dust on the Holy Word, the words of all the prophets and the sayings of our Lord.”
"I would like a job as tutor, teacher and advisor to your family. I will never take a vacation. I will never be out of humor. I don’t drink or smoke. I won’t borrow your clothes or raid your refrigerator. I will be up in the morning as early as anyone in the household and will stay up as late as anyone wishes. I will help solve any problems your children might have. I will give you the satisfaction of knowing that no question your children ask will go unanswered. For that matter, I will answer any of your own questions on subjects that range from ’How we got here?’ to ’Where are we headed?’ I will help settle bets and differences of opinion. I will give you information that will help you with your job, your family and all of your other interests. In short, I will give you the knowledge that will insure the continued success of your family. I am your Bible. Do I get the job?"
King Josiah began a project to restore the run-down, cluttered temple that had been deserted during Manasseh’s evil reign. During the renovation, Hilkiah the high priest found a copy of the book of the law of Moses. He carried the scrolls to Shapan the scribe, who read the scrolls, reported the find to the king, and read them to him. The result was a mighty revival in Judah.
I. GO FIND THE BOOK (v. 8).
What place and priority does the Bible have in your life? Is it a manual for living, or is it stuffed with keepsakes and gathering dust somewhere in your home?
ILLUS: A woman wanting to impress the pastor when he came to visit, said to her little girl, “Honey, go get the book that Mommy loves so much.” The little girl soon returned carrying the new Sears catalog.
The loss of God’s Word was both the result and the cause of leading His people away from Him. The rediscovery of the Bible brought a mighty turning to God. So, go find the Book.
ILLUS: One day, a teacher was teaching her young class the story of Jesus visiting Mary and Martha. She carefully explained how Mary and Martha had hurried to clean the house and cook a special meal. Then she paused and asked, “What would you do if Jesus was going to visit your house today?” One little girl quickly responded, “I’d put the Bible on the table!”
II. GO READ THE BOOK (v. 10).
God’s people not only found the Book, they also read it and rejoiced to hear its words. When they heard what it said, they repented of their sins and turned back to God.
We need to heed the recommendation that says, “When all else fails, read the instructions.” All else has failed; it time we read the Bible. A dusty Bible is a dead Bible. Pick up and read it; it will change your life.
ILLUS: Louis L’Amour, famed writer of novels about the American West, wrote a short story that described a man who liked books. The man was noticed acting suspiciously as he perused the shelves in a library. He took down a leather-bound copy of Shakespeare’s King Lear and ran his fingers gently over the cover. He opened the book and felt the pages. Suddenly he tucked it under his coat and bolted out the door. Someone who had been watching him ran after the thief and stopped him. The man willingly surrendered the book. Then he explained. All his life he had loved books, but he had never learned to read. So he would come to the library just to hold books. He loved the way they felt in his hands. That’s why he had stolen Shakespeare. Some people are like that with their Bibles. They enjoy the feel of the leather as they carry them to church. They love the smell of the pages. But they never read them. What a shame!
III. GO OBEY THE BOOK (vv. 11-13).
When Shapan the scribe read the Scriptures to King Josiah, he realized the calamity that had come upon God’s people was rooted in ignorant disobedience. God’s people were disobedient because they didn’t know the truth. Once they knew the truth, they began to act differently. Find the Book, read the Book, and, most of all obey the Book. God requires obedience from His children.
ILLUS: A ranger was leading a group of hikers to a fire lookout. The ranger was so intent on telling the hikers about the flowers and animals that he considered the messages on his two-way radio distracting, so he switched it off. Nearing the tower, the ranger was met by a nearly breathless lookout, who asked why he hadn’t responded to the messages on his radio. A grizzly bear had been seen stalking the group, and the authorities were trying to warn them. When we tune out God’s messages we put ourselves and others at peril.