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What does it mean that every word of God is pure (Proverbs 30:5)?

every word of God is pure

The writer identified as Agur says, “Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him” (Proverbs 30:5, NKJV).

Agur’s statement that every word of God is pure indicates that the Lord’s words and His promises are worthy of our trust because they are tested, tried, and proven to be true. In the original Hebrew, the term translated as “pure” means “proven to be true or trustworthy, flawless.” The word is associated with smelting, or being refined and purified by fire, as in Psalm 12:6: “And the words of the Lord are flawless, like silver purified in a crucible, like gold refined seven times.” God’s Word contains no mixture of impurities, error, or imperfection.

Every word refers to every declaration and revelation in the inspired record or, in other words, everything God has said in Scripture. God’s Word is the ultimate, infallible, reliable source of truth. Every single word is flawless, perfect, and sincere. There is not the slightest hint of falsehood, corruption, or deficiency in it.

The Lord’s promises have stood up to every possible real-world test. “Your promises have been thoroughly tested, and your servant loves them,” states the psalmist (Psalm 119:140). We can put our trust in God and His Word to protect us like a shield: “God’s way is perfect. All the Lord’s promises prove true. He is a shield for all who look to him for protection” (2 Samuel 22:31, NLT; see also Psalm 18:30).

Besides offering protection, every word of God is pure in that it provides light and direction to those who trust in it: “The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes” (Psalm 19:8). God’s Word is “a lamp” to guide our feet and “a light” to illuminate our path (Psalm 119:105).

God’s Word is pure, and it is sure to accomplish the Lord’s intended purpose (Jeremiah 1:12; 23:29; Isaiah 46:10–11; 55:10–11; 1 Thessalonians 2:13). “Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to Israel failed; every one was fulfilled,” declares Joshua 21:45. Every word God speaks to humanity is given for a purpose that He will fulfill: “But I the Lord will speak what I will, and it shall be fulfilled without delay. . . . I will fulfill whatever I say, declares the Sovereign Lord” (Ezekiel 12:25).

God’s Word is alive, powerful, and able to penetrate to the depths of the human soul (Hebrews 4:12; John 6:63; 1 Peter 1:23). Through His Word, God reveals Himself to humanity. We come to know who God is and enter into a relationship with Him through His Word (Luke 24:27, 44–45; John 5:39). God teaches, rebukes, corrects, prepares, and equips us for every good work through His Word (2 Timothy 3:16–17). Every word from God is to be received as pure spiritual milk—nourishment for our souls—so that by it we might grow up into the full experience of salvation (1 Peter 2:2).

God’s Word is pure and therefore has a purifying effect on those who love and obey it (Psalm 119:9; Ephesians 5:26). Jesus told His disciples they had “already been pruned and purified by the message” that He had delivered to them (John 15:3, NLT). The apostle Paul explained that, as followers of Christ, we are made “holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word” to be presented as His bride, “a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish” (Ephesians 5:26–27, NLT).

Every word of God is pure reminds us that the Bible in its original autograph is infallible and inerrant. Everything in it is truth. Its author is God, who makes no mistakes. His Word is the final authority (Psalm 119:89; Galatians 3:10).

Because every word of God is pure, flawless, and complete, Agur says in Proverbs 30:6, “Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.” How can we attempt to improve on what is already perfect? For this reason, we are warned not to add to or take anything away from God’s Word (Deuteronomy 4:2; 12:32; Revelation 22:18).

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This page last updated: February 27, 2023