by Pastor Mark Shupe
Before the invention of the internet and wireless networks, if a person wanted to communicate with other people they would often sit down and write a letter. In fact, when Leza and I were dating long distance, a regular means of our communication included the writing and receiving of letters (she was much more consistent in writing than I was).
Fast forward a number of years to our modern-day world of emails and text messages, and it seems we have lost the art of hand-written letters and the expression of our heart’s desires through the written word. Interestingly, this lost form of communication is the very means by which God has and continues to communicate with us today.
God is a writer who pens words that are uniquely crafted and suited for each of us. In fact, there are four places in the Bible that record the direct writings from the hand of God.
God wrote on stone tablets (how different from many of us who started writing on Big Chief tablets) when he gave the Ten Commandments.
God wrote on a wall when pronouncing judgment on King Belshazzar for profaning the use of vessels that were to be used in the worship of God.
Jesus wrote on the ground unknown words when addressing a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. Even though we don’t know what Jesus wrote, He did not condemn the woman, but sent her on her way with the words “go and sin no more.”
The Holy Spirit writes on the tablets of our hearts in part as proof and validation of the life-transforming ministry of Christ.
As I reflect on the recorded writings of God, several things jump out to me:
What are we to do with the writings and words of God that He communicates to us? Consider the response of Samuel (see 1 Samuel 3:1-10) and the words of this old hymn that references Samuel’s attentive ear to God’s words.
“Oh give me Samuel’s ear, an open ear, O Lord, alive and quick to hear, each whisper of Thy Word; Like him to answer to Thy call and to obey Thee first of all.” – James Drummond Burns, “Hushed Was the Evening Hymn”
For further reflection: