“Every word of God is tested; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. Do not add to His words or He will reprove you, and you will be proved a liar.” – Proverbs 30:5-6 (NASB)
These are “the words of Agur the son of Jakeh the oracle.” We can only suggest that Agur was an otherwise unknown sage who could have been a student or teacher of wisdom at the time of Solomon. The words are identified as an oracle which was often used of the words of a prophet. The verses or proverbs we’ve selected compare the certainty of God’s revelation and the uncertainty of our speculation of what God’s words mean. Stating that every word of God is ‘tested’ is literally translated ‘tried’ in verse 5. The same teaching comes to us in Psalm 12:6 “The words of the Lord are pure words; As silver tried in a furnace on the earth, refined seven times.” Proverbs 30:6 delivers a powerful affirmation on the inspired nature of God’s canonical Word to Israel. To add to or subtract from God’s Word is to deny God as the standard of truth. The same instruction and warning are given in Deuteronomy 4:2; 12:32. It is a first and frequent practice of false teachers to modify the words of God. The Bible concludes with the warning again in Revelation 22:18-19 with a more dire warning.
“If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.” – 1 John 1:8-10 (NASB)
We do not much care for the parts of the bible that reveal our weaknesses and our sinful nature do we? Yet these truths are there for us to learn the grace and love of God. John wrote this short letter to those who were living under some serious persecution from Rome and the non-believing population. The reminder in these three verses is our promise. We still sin and we cannot claim to be sinless. If we claim to have no sin or have not sinned we deceive ourselves of any truth in us and we make God a liar. In that state we need forgiveness for we can’t claim we hold the Word of God in us. But we can confess our sins each time and our faithful God, who is righteous promises to forgive us our sins. He washes the unrighteousness out of us. Those who suffer difficulty might be tempted to sin in many ways. John writes for us. If we live according to the flesh we will transgress God’s law. But He gives us grace to confess and be forgiven each time. We are restored by His promise to live according the His Spirit.
“What if some were unfaithful? Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God? By no means! Let God be true though every one were a liar, as it is written, “That you may be justified in your words, and prevail when you are judged.” Romans 3:3 (ESV)
Our concern with truth is a predictable expression of our concern with God. If God exists, then He exists just as the Bible presents Him. God, then is the measure of all things, and what he thinks about all things is the measure of what we should think. We believe the Bible is the Word of God because God says it is and God cannot lie. Every thing God has said, and that includes every word spoken by Jesus Christ, is true. When Jesus says He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life and that no one can come to God the Father except through Him, God the Son, it is absolute truth. Believing in absolute truth is not a popular position these days. Once we learn a truth is absolute it will never change. Not to care about truth is not to care about God. To love God passionately is to love truth passionately. Being God-centered in life means being truth-driven in our lives. What is not true is not of God. We can know by this promise that if all were untruthful, God remains truthful. When we trust none other, we still trust God completely.