Howe about … 9 steps to better Bible reading (part 1 of 3)
You’ve probably heard me say it at least once or twice by now that the key to our walk with God is through Bible reading. We must go to the Word of God (the Bible) on a regular basis if we want to have a chance of surviving as a Christian. Not one of us attempts to live our physical lives without eating. In the same way, neither should we go through our spiritual life without feeding our soul. God has given us an incredible gift by giving us His Word. The Bible reveals the heart, nature, and character of the living God. Without Scripture, we would only have our own desire of what we want God to be, and that, my friends, only misleads and deceives us. So, I wanted to take some time to explore how we can better read and understand the Bible.
First, we must make a plan to spend time in Scripture. I love some clichés and I abhor others, but I like this one: if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. When it comes to having time in God’s Word, we simply don’t often have the desire or the “time” to be in it. You will find that you can’t seem to find the time or you will happen upon some free time, but not want to fill it with reading the Bible because there are so many other things to do or you forget or blah, blah, fill in the blank. Reading the Bible is an exercise that we must plan to do. We, literally, might need to write it in as a meeting on our personal schedules. Do whatever it takes to make it happen. This is a matter of priority and planning. Value your spirit enough to feed yourself with good food daily.
The truth is Bible reading is a spiritual discipline. Wise Christians who are walking with God in a sweet relationship do not just happen. Just like a really muscular, trim body doesn’t just happen, neither does a spiritually fit person just happen. It takes time and intentional effort (all made possible by God). The whole foundation of physical fitness is in nutrition. In like fashion, the whole foundation for a solid spiritual condition is Bible reading. Therefore, if living in an awesome relationship with the Creator of the Universe being intimately guided by His hand is what you desire, then build upon the foundation of serious, intentional Bible reading.
Second, we should go to Scripture as if the Bible is the Word of God. Have you ever heard someone say that you get what you expect to get out of something? There is a reality to this notion. When we sit down with our Bibles, if we recognize these words as from the heart of God to us, then we find our hearts ready to accept what is written. If we come to Scripture as if it is a mere historical document, then at best, we get some academic knowledge of history of other people’s relationship with a deity. One of these mindsets might make us smarter, but the other will transform our lives.
If you are struggling with the idea of whether God exists or not, coming to the Bible with that mindset described above will be next to impossible. But, may I challenge you to go to the Bible and ask yourself as you read, “Does this book tell me the truth about myself, my condition, and the human condition in general?” Also, ask yourself, “If there is a god, is it crazy to think that he would want to communicate vital truths to his creation so that they could spend an eternity with him rather than in a place of punishment and torment?” Also, I would encourage you to grab a book by Josh McDowell called The New Evidence that Demands a Verdict available on Amazon.com and just about any Christian book store.
Implementation is the most crucial aspect of this discipline. So, take a moment now to look at your week ahead and plan a time to read the Bible each day for at least a half an hour, (work up to an hour). Then, protect that time as if it were a meeting with your boss that you aren’t allowed to change. If someone calls, ignore the call until your time in the Word is complete. Moms, you might have to be particularly flexible with your time because you might have young interruptions, I mean children. But, it is possible. Happy reading!!!
Justin began serving as the pastor at Faith in February of 2013. He is passionate about people having the opportunity to hear the good news about eternal life through Jesus Christ.