Bible Study (Part 1)
Thank you for reading our page on reading your bible, in this page and page two I am looking to give an introduction to basic reasons that studying the Bible is important to your life as a Christian. Please check out our other pages also.
Why do we study?
2 Timothy 2:15 (ESV) Do your best to approve yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.
Not reading the Bible is like going into battle with no swords, guns, armour or firepower. One of the Christians most effective tools in Christian ministry is the very words of God which have been left for him to instruct, correct and sharpen the Christian in his/her daily walk.
I once drove past a church that is known locally for having witty sayings and quotes (that I have sometimes re-tweeted and shared on Facebook) but this day the quote that they had was rather profound and made me think about how I treat the holy and inspired Word of God.
You see, by reading this article it tells me that you have at the very least a passing interest in the book that is the infallible God breathed Holy scriptures written by 40 different authors, divinely inspired, over a period of time that spanned several millennia, in at least three different languages, preserved in history for us by many circumstances and verifiable historical events that would have lost the book (had it been an ordinary book)
It is a book of history, of archeology, of law, of culture a book that keeps being proven correct time after time, no other book has as much peer reviewed evidence to support the claims that it makes. No other holy book, not the Qu’ran, not the Book of Mormon, not any other book that has been deemed as sacred to a particular faith has been proven over and over.
The quote that troubled me was “The man who has a million book in his library and does not read his Bible is no better off that the penniless illiterate man” Now I am neither, neither rich or illiterate, however I have more in common with the rich man in this scenario.
You see, as unlikely as it sounds, I have a library, I have books from Luther, Spurgeon, Chuck Smith, Greg Laurie, Alistair Begg, Chuck Swindoll, David Guzik, Bob Grenier, David Hocking, James Jacob Prasch, Joel Rosenberg, Ken Ham, Henry Morris, Carl Kerby and many other men of God that have written many fine books. These are my treasures and I love each of these books dearly.
Have I read them all? Not at all! My wife often remarks that I am not allowed to purchase any more books until I read the ones I have. But the most important book I have in my library is the Bible. Like many western homes I have about 8 different copies of the bibles, study bibles, different versions of the bible, and that is just on hard copy, that is not counting the e-copies and apps I have on my electronic devices.
With all of these copies of the Bible, am I proficient? Possibly, I always have this deep longing in my heart to know more of God’s word and Gods heart for my life. Let us look at why the effective study of the Bible is important.
What is the Bible used for in the Christian life?
2 Timothy 3:16 (ESV) All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
The Bible is the centerpiece of the Christian faith and this verse tells us of the author, the source for the wisdom and the words that are contained inside. It is to be used as prescribed.
FOR TEACHING – There is so much in the Bible that we could not do it justice in a simple web page, however, the belief of the Christian who is completely sold out for Jesus Christ is that the Bible has the answers to any question that could possibly be asked in life.
FOR REPROOF & FOR CORRECTION – We are in a fallen world that is in need of God’s forgiveness. We are born into a sinful nature and our natural inclination is to follow our own will. We need to be re-aligned and corrected, much like when we were children and needed to be taught how to act correctly, the Bible provides the words to help us do that.
FOR TRAINING IN RIGHTEOUSNESS – Notice the order that these are in, we have to be taught, we have to re-proofed, corrected and lastly trained in righteousness. Justification is a decision we take, but Sanctification is a process and whilst I am better than I was at the time of my conversion, God is not finished with me yet and I am still being chipped into shape.
Really the Bible is essential to the Christian life and living a balanced effective Christian walk. If you are having a low point in your faith, one of the first things you may wish to look at is your devotional times. Perhaps not the longevity of them but what is happening in your heart, is it a case of going through the motions, is it a case of ticking the box, or even is it happening at all.
The Bible as a light
Psalm 119:105 (ESV) NUN – Your word is a lamp unto my feet and a light to my path.
The Psalmist talks of the Word being a light unto my feet and a light unto my path, speaking literally have you ever tried to find anything in a darkened room, perhaps the power has gone out or you are in a strange room and you try to navigate, it is not easy. The Bible is our navigation tool in this dark and dismal world.
The Bible is not the only “light” spoken about in the Bible, Jesus is prophesied in the Old Testament and referred to as the one who came to light up this dark and dismal world.
This connects beautifully with what Jesus said when he said that he was “the light of the world” The Gospel of John begins beautifully by introducing Jesus as the Messiah first to the Jews and then to the world in the words below.
John 1:1 (ESV) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was God, and the Word was God.
The book of the Law that the Jewish believers, both the Torah (first five books) and the rest of the Old Testament pointed towards the Messiah who came in the historical figure Jesus Christ.
How should we study the Word?
Joshua 1:8 (ESV) This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
We have to immerse ourselves in it, in the same way that we immerse ourselves in baptism, we have to saturate ourselves in the Word so the it is coming out of our every pore, our glass should be that full that we are consistently spilling over infecting our world with the love of Jesus.
We have to be careful with this verse as it has been used by many “health, wealth and prosperity” preachers that if we “tick God’s boxes” we will be successful, our bank accounts will always be full and we will have success in this life always. God never promised this and it is a mis-reading of this scripture.
Acts 17:10 (ESV) The brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived they went into the Jewish synagogue. 11 Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.
Oh LORD make me a Berean, I want to know every nook and cranny of every word, phrase and precept of every scripture I read. I am very much a knowledge guy and wish to know everything about what I believe and I like to prove the Bible to be true (hence the blog)
Ezra 7:10 (ESV) For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the LORD, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel.
We should study like a Berean, however we must also pour into others, Jesus said at the end of the book of Matthew that we are “called to make disciples of all nations” Like Ezra, we must be willing to show others the truth of God’s Holy Scriptures, for God’s glory. (Not ours)
1 Timothy 4:13 (ESV) Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching.
Meeting together to read scripture and grow together is vital to the growth of you dear Christian, we all have mountain top experiences in our lives and we all have deep valleys, we need to teach others and be open to being taught, likewise we have to exhort and be willing to be exhorted, all part and parcel of growing together.
We have to be courageous and be honest with our brothers, sounds simple and obvious but in my experience we will try to be strong and not admit when we are falling and failing, when we do this we miss out on the blessings of having a brother/sister love on you and hold you up.
Psalm 1:1 (ESV) Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; 2 but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.
Do you have delight in your study of God’s word? or is it a chore? Perhaps this may be a prayer point for you in your personal devotions and if you are in a family set up, your family devotions. We are to meditate on God’s word day and night; it has to be used to change us, to mold us to make us new.
God bless and I pray this was a blessing and please feel free to like, share or comment on here or whatever social media platforms you use as the Lord leads you to, as always I love questions about this or any other article so please feel free to fill in the form below, all comments are moderated to avoid profanity.