The Bible in word or voice: why does it have such power to change a life

What makes the word of God so encouraging, why does it have such power to change a life.

I know its spirit and truth, I know this now but even when I didn’t believe, it still had power.

I know this because I did not want to read it at all before because I was afraid of it.

I heard of God all my life but many have not.

Why is it living and power filled as it says it is. Some read it as a book but most end up transformed by it.

I am certain this is an ages old question.
How can the simple words “Jesus wept” affect a non believer?

Countless people who never heard are being and have been affected by it.

Perhaps my feeble words are not conveying exactly what my heart is asking.

For most believers here UP is digging deeper and moving further away from the beginning.

Digress back to someone not even knowing Truth existed, then they read this book called the Bible and even if they don’t initially get “saved” the word pierces the darkness.

It is completely contrary to our nature.

I am very familiar with the Theological aspect, yet is there another part I am missing?

Perplexing to me, is it to anyone else?


Hi @Michael,

That’s a great question! As I read the Bible, I am inspired by the fact that the narratives are real life stories. It gives me a lens through which I can interpret my own life. It has helped me understand what loving God can look and feel like. Anytime I see the love of God in action in the stories of the Bible, I am moved by it. Perhaps this is because our deepest needs as humans are of love, acceptance, belonging and freedom. When we see these needs being met in God in the lives of the people of God in the Bible, we develop a desire to have that experience for ourselves. I am amazed at the number of authors and the variety of genres that God used to present His truth in the Bible. We can all find someone to relate with in the pages of the Bible.

One of the main scriptures that played a role in me turning to Christ from Hinduism was Isaiah 44:19. Why did this verse have so much power over me? Because I was able to relate to it based on an experience in my own life. On reading the verse I felt God was lovingly calling me to walk away from foolishness and grow in my understanding. The Holy Spirit who inspired Isaiah to write the words convicted my heart as well and changed the course of my life.

But you also asked what’s so different about God’s voice that people change after hearing it. Its perplexing to me too. It may be because God speaks exactly what we need to hear.


Hi @michael1,

Interesting question… a lot to ponder. I’m curious how others will answer your question. I agree with Lakshmi’s perspective.

Can the theological element be developed to encompass many other elements?

For instance, theologically, we say it is God’s word, so it can change our lives because God’s word is powerful. After all, God’s words created all things, including us. So when humans who are created in his image, by his word, then hear his Word, it can powerfully affect them.

But let’s expand the idea. God is also a God of beauty. As we study God’s word, we find that it is beautiful. The poetry is crafted with artistic excellence, the stories are told with genius, the letters are written with persuasive but compassionate arguments… on each page we see a beautiful literary form suited for its intended purpose.

I wonder if that leads to some other insights?


Hi @michael1 this is such a lovely question that encourages me to reflect on how the Bible can impact me as a believer, and another who may be an unbeliever.

We’re told that the word of God is living and active (Heb 4:12). This verse also says that it is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. I think this must mean that it sets the standard, and when we read it, we see how we fall short of the standard. As you say,

Our nature can be in opposition to God. Some people will read the Word and love it because they see it brings life and points to the truth. Others will ignore it because to face up to God’s truth is too uncomfortable to bear.

As we’re each made unique, with different ‘languages’ to connect to God, I see that the vast array of literature in scripture can speak to many in different ways. For some, the poetry will be so beautiful that it’ll sweep them away in comprehending God. For those who don’t enjoy abstract poetic illustrations of a concrete idea, this will require more study time to understand that type of language. On the other hand, someone else will love the matter of fact chronologies of a people group with statistics and figures, because that’s a pleasure for their brain, but someone else will struggle to see meaning and joy in this same passage.

To illustrate, a friend recently said that when she left her home town area to study at the opposite end of the country, this meant that she moved away from a mountainous region to a flatter part of the country. In this move, she felt that one of God’s ‘voices’ had stopped because she had always felt a connection to God when being in the mountains. I like this idea of God having different voices, and I think the Bible uses different voices to connect to people so well. The message is always the same, but God is soft and gentle in one place, poetic in another, shouting in another, and challenging in another. The full range of human emotions are there, the full range of human expressions, and I think this is because God is purposely being accessible to us.

Personally speaking, I might read a verse on one day and it not impact me at all, yet on another day the same verse will impact me deeply. This may be because it speaks into a particular situation, or my emotions are very different, or any other number of things. As we reflect God’s image, our range of emotions connects to God’s range of emotions (I mean that whilst he has a full range, he is unchanging. I don’t mean he’s volatile like we can be).

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