ODB: Initial Point


September 30, 2012 


The Bible is like a compass: if followed, you’re going in the right direction. 

READ: Psalm 119:97-104 

It is written, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” —Matthew 4:4 

If you drive south of our home in Boise, Idaho, you’ll see a volcanic butte that rises out of the sagebrush on the east side of the road. This is the initial point from which the state of Idaho was surveyed.

In 1867, four years after Idaho was organized as a territory, Lafayette Cartee, the Surveyor General of the United States, commissioned Peter Bell to survey the new territory. Bell took a sledge and drove a brass post into a little knob on the summit of that butte, declaring it to be the initial point from which he began his survey.

The survey established the language of land description in Idaho: Townships are designated north and south of the initial point; ranges are designated east and west. With such descriptions, you always know exactly where you are.

We may read many books, but the Word of God is our “initial point,” the fixed reference point. John Wesley read widely, but he always referred to himself as “a man of one book.” Nothing can compare to the Book of books, the Word of God. When we allow the Bible to be our guide in all of life, we can say with the psalmist, “How sweet are Your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” (Ps. 119:103).

— David H. Roper

Source: Our Daily Bread

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