Thirdly, God takes His revelation to man very seriously such that He warns those who tamper with God’s Word that they could prove themselves to be unsaved and thus miss out on eternal life. Revelation 22:18-19 says,
“I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.”
This might seem harsh, but it is what God says because God knows that the church is built upon truth and called to communicate truth (1 Timothy 3:15). If truth is cut or compromised, the whole pillar falls and the way for evil is opened wide. Paul affirmed the seriousness of accepting God’s Word and not altering its meaning when he says in Galatians 1:8-9,
“But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!”
The meaning of “accursed” is to be devoted to destruction with no hope of redemption. Indeed, it is serious business to alter the meaning of God’s Word, to change the gospel to be more palatable, and to redefine sound doctrine. What God has given must be preserved, guarded, kept, and preached without altering the text and without compromising the entirety and integrity of the Scripture. Man may teach God’s Word incorrectly and incur judgment, but man cannot ever change it. Matthew 5:18 says, “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished.” And as Peter says in 1 Peter 1:25, “‘BUT THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURES FOREVER.’ And this is the word which was preached to you.” God’s Word will never fail, and God will preserve it. Its eternal truths are always true, no matter what man might try to say about them. Man does not stand in judgment over God’s Word, though he might think he does and even try to do so, but God’s Word will always stand in judgment over him. As Psalm 119:160 says, “The sum of Your word is truth, and every one of Your righteous ordinances is everlasting.” Our calling before God is to be faithful to believe every Word of Scripture. If we don’t receive it all, we will miss out on much that God wants to teach us, and we will fail to be able to be used as God would prefer to use us. Let us take in God’s Word cover to cover, and let us value God’s Word as highly and as seriously as God does.