Do you have a profitable life? If so, by what standard?
Do you desire a profitable life? Would you like to hear your earthly parents express genuine pride in your meaningful accomplishments? How about God—when in that future day you stand before God, do you have confidence that He will look you directly in the eye and say, “Well done, you good and faithful child of Mine?” (Matthew 25:20-23).
God gave us the Scriptures for many reasons. Here, from a single verse, 2 Timothy 3:16, are four critical ways to profit from God’s Word.
“But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:14-17, NKJV, emphasis added).
Profitable for Doctrine~Doctrine shows us what is right. Doctrine and theology are beliefs—the Bible tells us what we should believe. Everyone has a set of beliefs which they adhere to. God through His Word tells us what to believe and what not to believe. Yes, there are absolutes!
Profitable for Reproof~ Reproof shows us what is not right. Warnings and reprimands are necessary and clearly given—the Bible tells us when we are headed in the wrong direction. The wrong direction is any path outside of God’s desire for us.
Profitable for Correction~ Correction shows us how to make things right. Correction and refocusing are aimed at our well-being, at pointing us back to the right direction of travel. Through correction we develop a lifestyle that not only pleases God but is best for us.
Profitable for Instruction~Instruction shows us how to keep things right. Intellectual and empirical learning are the road signs pointing out the way in which we should go, the right path—the narrow road of blessing in which we delight our heavenly Father.
“Work hard so God can say to you, ‘Well done.’ Be a good workman, one who does not need to be ashamed when God examines your work. Know what his Word says and means” (2 Timothy 2:15-16, The Living Bible).