In my mouth, sweet as honey...

Revelation 10:8-11 And the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and said, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth.
9 And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.
10 And I took the little book out of the angelís hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.
11 And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.

The apostle John, as well as the prophet Ezekiel, is commanded to eat the Word. It was necessary for him to assimilate the Word into his being, because he was being commissioned by God to prophesy before many peoples, nations, tongues, and kings.

Johnís love for the Word made it sweet to his mouth. But it was bitter to his belly, indicating that the Word ingested brings a work of the cross to the self-life. It is a sharp two-edged sword that divides soul and spirit and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).

Why did God tell Ezekiel and John to eat the Word? Why didnít He just tell them to remember the message and to speak it as it was related to them? Jesus said, The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life (John 6:63). John 1:1 says that "the Word is God." The Word carries the very presence and nature of God. Therefore, Ezekiel and John were not merely delivering a message from God to the people; they were delivering a Word that enhoused the very presence of the Lord. Consequently, it was necessary for them to partake of the Spirit of the Word. Just quoting the Word does not accomplish Godís purpose. The speaker must eat the Word and digest it; that is, partake of the Spirit of the Word. Only then will it carry the presence of the Lord. When one only memorizes the Word or commits it to his own interpretation and understanding, then the presence of the Lord is not transferred with the message.

We do not automatically know how to partake of the spirit and life of the Word (John 6:63). It is something we must learn how to do. Christians usually have great difficulty in finding the spiritual life in the Scriptures, because they are so accustomed to leaning upon their own understanding (Proverbs 3:5). Many never find the hidden gold of the Word. Consequently, there is no spiritual growth. Change does not take place in their lives. The first step is to come to the place where we realize that there is a vein of divine life hidden in the Scriptures. Half the battle is won with that awareness.

Copyright © 1996 by Henry DuBose