The late Dr. D. James Kennedy related an account of a woman he was attempting to share the Gospel with. When he said, we need to be saved so as to gain heaven and miss hell, she responded that her god was a god of love and would not send anyone to hell.
Dr. Kennedy repeatedly shared with this lady Scriptures that speak of a place of eternal torment and the need to be saved from such a place, only to have her repeat her initial asseveration. Finally he recognized her refusal to accept what the Bible said, for what it was. He told her she was right, her god would not send anyone to a place called hell, but her god was a god of her imagination and not the God of the Bible.
This anecdote serves to highlight the results of a recent Pew survey titled, “When Americans Say They Believe in God, What Do They Mean?” It is an important question. One statistic that has remained constant over decades of polling religious views is ninety percent of Americans claim to believe in God.
The problem with that statistic is we have witnessed a steady drift away from biblical principles and practice in daily life here in America to the point that any honest and careful observer would be prompted to ask what Jesus did in Luke 6:46, “Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?”
This is the reason that so many claim to believe in God and even claim to be Christian, and yet speak and act in complete contradiction to what the Scriptures have revealed to us about the nature and will of God the Father and Christ. Their so-called faith is as dusty as their Bibles, and they have allowed their memories, of what they may or may not have read, to be supplanted by their imaginations.
One of the reasons I am continually reading through my Bible is because, like everyone else, I have a great capacity to forget and need to constantly be reminded of what the Scriptures teach. My understanding and memory are bolstered by this discipline.
The God Christians worship is revealed to us in the Bible, so we do not worship the Bible, but the God of the Bible. But He is unknown to us except for what is revealed in the Scriptures. Ergo, I agree with what the late Derek Prince said, “You do not serve God more than you serve the Bible, you do not obey God more than you obey the Bible, and you do not love God more than you love the Bible.”
Moses told Israel, “Know therefore today, and take it to heart, that the Lord, He is God in heaven above and on the earth below; there is no other,” Deuteronomy 4:39. In truth, there is no other God than He who is revealed to us in the Bible, all the rest are idols of man’s imagination.