Study it. Believe it. Experience it. Live it. Teach it.
With all the poetries, psalms, histories, prophecies, parables, proverbs….the bible is such a beautiful book. A great gift to mankind.
I have owned bibles for years. Bibles in different versions, all sorts of sizes and colors. I’ve had so many kinds of bible apps on my phone and tablet. I currently OWN 4 bibles in the city am in (I left my other bibles in my hometown)!
But why is it still so hard to read and understand?
As beautiful as it is, why is not my VERY FAVORITE BOOK?
If I’ve owned it for years, how come there are so many things I still don’t know from it? How come there are some books in it that I’ve never read before?
If it contains power to change things in me, how come am still the same?
It is a powerful weapon, how come I still don’t know how to use it?
With all the wisdom in it, how come am still ignorant in many things? How is it that am not wise?
At some point in my life, these questions bothered me. Really bothered me. I wanted more from the Word (Bible). Not that the Word felt powerless, unrelatable and ancient, but I wanted to find out HOW I COULD GET MORE FROM IT. I was either doing something wrong or I wasn’t doing what was supposed to be done to benefit from it. It felt like reading a book on nutrition, but struggling with poor health all my life .
I was a bible READER. Done. Nothing more.
That was the problem.
Ezra 7:10 Amplified Bible (AMP) 10 For Ezra had set his heart (resolved) to study and interpret the Law of the Lord, and to practice it and teach His statutes and ordinances in Israel.
Ezra, a priest and teacher of the Word of God in the Old Testament, had made up his mind that he would study the law (Word). He had made a decision to search the scriptures, unveil the truth, uncover mysteries.
We are to search scripture; find out the meaning of life, know our purpose/assignment on earth, understand the character of God, know about events to come, learn about the sins we are to avoid and the good we are to obey and do, read about His promises and claim them, live the life He has called us to live. It’s for us to read the history of Abraham, Adam, Moses,Gideon and all those people, learn from their mistakes and be inspired by their courage, faith, obedience and the good in their life. I used to read about Abraham and the only thing I was able to extract from all the chapters about his life was his faith. Now I see more; I see worship. I see greatness that flows beyond Israel to those in Christ.
We should read the Word for the sake of doing what it says and learning from it.
Joshua 1:8 Amplified Bible (AMP) 8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall read [and meditate on] it day and night, so that you may be careful to do [everything] in accordance with all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will be successful.
This verse in Joshua chapter 1 was the Lord talking to Joshua as he was about to take over the responsibility from Moses of leading the Israelites into the Promised Land.
Mediation is such a powerful thing. It is deep thinking, pondering over something.This helps us get more from what we’ve read. Try to have a scripture or passage to meditate on all day for one week and see how much of the Word you’ll get from doing that. After reading, take time to think about what you’ve read. Invite the Holy Spirit, your teacher, to help you understand.
Our faith is founded on the Word of God. It comes by hearing the Word.
Romans 10:17 Amplified Bible (AMP) 17 So faith comes from hearing [what is told], and what is heard comesby the [preaching of the] message concerning Christ.
We have to read the Word and believe that it is the inspired Word of God and that it is true. If you read that God loves you and are skeptical, you will not act like one who is loved. What we believe shows up in our words, actions, decisions, attitudes and plans. We can’t rise beyond what we believe.
James 1:22 Amplified Bible (AMP)
22 But prove yourselves doers of the word [actively and continually obeying God’s precepts],
and not merely listeners
[who hear the word but fail to internalize its meaning],
deluding yourselves [by unsound reasoning contrary to the truth].
When we read the warnings in the Word, we should take heed and be watchful. When we come across promises we should claim them. When we read instructions and commands we should obey. We shouldn’t just go through the Word with nothing being changed about us. Our minds need to be constantly renewed by the Word. Most of the times, it’s our mentality that keeps us from enjoying the good things God has promised and given to us in His Word. We live like paupers and slaves when our Father is the King and owner of all riches (Haggai 2:8). We cry for healing when healing was given by His stripes (Isaiah 53:). We go about asking for things we already have! Yearn to experience and live the Word! Wouldn’t you want to live the abundant life that Jesus talked about in John 10?! I know I do!
Like Ezra, we should practise what the Word says.
When we read the promises we should have excitement and a passion to see them be fulfilled in our lives. After hearing about His greatness and sovereignty, we should bow down in adoration and reverence.
Hebrews 5:12 Amplified Bible (AMP) 12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers [because of the time you have had to learn these truths], you actually need someone to teach you again the elementary principles of God’s word [from the beginning], and you have come to be continually in need of milk, not solid food.
We have to be student teachers; people who are still continuously learning for the Word day by day that are able to teach others. We need to be able to teach what we have learnt allowing others to benefit too. We need to mature, the Word is the food for our growth. Like the verse in Ezra, he studied it and taught it to the Israelites.
Above all else, the Word is a letter from the Father to His children. Personalize it. Treat it as God talking to you, so answer Him while you read it 🙂
To study the Word you need to invest time,sometimes money, and energy. Studying it needs strategy.
I am a visual learner, I absorb more information and understanding through things that I see. I love taking notes, drawing. So my strategy is to visualize the bible and it’s contents as much as I can. So, to get a good overview of the whole bible I drew up a table that has the bible book names, key players/characters in each book, key lessons (what was going on) and location (where the events took place). After designing it, I got it printed and hang it on my wall. I’ll blog about how I did it soon.
I have decided to make the bible the most read book in my collection. I want more from the Bible. And my motto is: