A Word from the Word

Refined in a Furnace


Psalm 12:6

The words of the Lord are flawless, like silver refined in a furnace of clay, purified seven times.     NIV

“The words of the Lord” – those are the words that are brought to us in Scripture. They’re flawless, they’re without error. They are absolutely and totally reliable. Do you perhaps wonder how that could be since they were brought to us by human agents, by men who were often weak and fallible and made mistakes? How can it be that the message that comes to us through such men is absolutely infallible, authoritative?

The psalmist uses a beautiful picture. He says it’s like silver refined in a furnace of clay, purified seven times. You see, the silver is the message of God. The furnace of clay represents the human instrument, the human messenger. There’s a fire in that furnace which is the fire of the Holy Spirit, infinitely pure, infinitely purified, and, as the message comes through the fire, even though it’s in a furnace of clay, the fire purifies the message and makes it absolutely pure and absolutely reliable. That’s why you can put your faith without question in the absolute accuracy and authority of God’s Word, the Scripture.

The words of the Lord are flawless. They’ve been purified seven times (that speaks of the Holy Spirit) in a furnace of clay, and they come forth as pure as refined silver.