The Universal Word

by Joanna Pierce on February 13, 2019

I’m an avid reader and I long for others to be as well. Therefore, I’m a huge solicitor of books—if you have a topic, problem, interest, etc., I’ve got a book recommendation for you. I’ve come across books with words written within that drastically change my life. I sit in profound awe and wonder at how God could use a writer to pen words so transformational to my life.

However, after recommending a book, there are times (albeit few), a person doesn’t have the same life-changing experience I did after reading a text. When asked how they felt about the book, they respond, “Ah, it was okay.” Okay? I immediately wonder how could this person not fall in love with the same pen and ink that I had poured over myself?

The truth of the matter is that we all don’t respond to the same words, stories, or books the way everyone else does. We all have a unique interest and draw to specific subject-matters, ideas, and prose. I can feel enlightened after reading a theological text, but put poetry in front of me and I’m lost.

While we all have different thoughts about what we read and what speaks to us, there is one book that has a unique, universal effect:

I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name (Psalms 138:2, KJV).

David wrote that God magnified His Word above His name. He was trying to explain that God has exalted or made His Word greater than everything else. Why? Because His Word is actually God Himself. John’s opening Scripture explains this truth:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God (John 1:1–2, KJV).

See it? The Word was God! But, how does this play into our book-reading?

Any other book in the world, other than the Bible (the infallible Word of God), can be misunderstood, un-appreciated, or sub-par in quality. But, God’s Word (who He is) is above every other book. His Word is greater than anything else a human could ever write, no matter the context, subject, or genre. No matter who reads it, God’s Word has the same impact—life-changing.

When praying about this concept, God impressed a notion upon me: God (and His Word) are universal. Not, just universal in the sense of being everywhere, but universal in the sense that all can understand Him (and His Word), and all can know and desire it.

There are many languages in the world, but not one person can know them all. There are many books in the world, but no one can read them all. And, even further, all the books in the world could never impact someone the same way. But, God and His Word are universal. It is the one book, subject matter, text, and truth that has been magnified. It has been exalted above everything else for one purpose—so we can know it, respond to it, and praise God for His truth! There’s no doubt as to what’s the best book. There’s no question as to what’s the greatest truth. It’s Him, it’s His Word, and He’s graciously given us the greatest story ever told.

If you aren’t much of a reader, I encourage you to pick up the one book that will change your life. It’s the universal Word, the breath of God, the Bible—and it’s just waiting for you to open it and dive right in.