“This is my Bible. I am what it says I am, I have what it says I have, I can do what it says I can do. Today, I will be taught the word of God. I boldly confess: My mind is alert, my heart is receptive, I will never be the same, in Jesus’ name!”
That’s how Joel Osteen, senior pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston, TX begins every sermon. So, let’s go back through this and break it down:
“This is my Bible”
Which he almost never opens and reads from, but we’ll come back to that later.
“I am what it says I am!”
And what it says you are is a sinner, an enemy of God, and spiritually dead.
All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23)
…while we were God’s enemies… (Romans 5:10)
The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. (Romans 8:7)
As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live (Ephesians 2:1-2)
The only person that can give you life and repair the relationship between you and God is Jesus Christ, so as long as you understand that, we’re on the right track.
What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:24-25)
“I have what it says I have”
If you have Christ, you have forgiveness of sins, eternal life, and peace with God.
everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name. (Acts 10:43)
whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16)
since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1)
If not, you’re still under His wrath.
whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them. (John 3:36)
“I can do what it says I can do.”
Correct. And the only thing you can do is sin, unless the Holy Spirit is in you and only then can you please God.
There is no one who does good. (Romans 3:12)
For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God. It doesn’t submit to God’s law; indeed it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. (Romans 8:7-8)
“Today I will be taught the word of God”
Psalm 1:2 tells us to:
Meditate on it day and night.
But, unless the Holy Spirit has changed you to receive it, you can’t understand it. For the natural person can’t discern spiritual things.
The natural person doesn’t accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him. He’s not able to understand them because they’re spiritually discerned (1 Corinthians 2:14)
“I boldly confess: my mind is alert”
Now we’re getting wonky. I boldly confess that I have a million bucks… but that doesn’t make it true.
“My heart is receptive”
Again, only the spirit can do that, not your declaration.
“I will never be the same”
And again, only if Christ has changed you.
“In Jesus’ name.”
Selfishly using God’s name is taking it in vain, also known as blasphemy.
So, about that first declaration: “This is my Bible”.
If you read the Bible, you’d know that you don’t declare anything over the Bible. The Bible declares authority over you!