2 Timothy 3:16-17 (BSB) All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for instruction, for conviction, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be complete, fully equipped for every good work.
Joshua 1:8 (NIV) Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
Psalm 119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Psalm 119:11 I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.
According to these verses, what are some of the reasons we need to read and study the Bible?
My favorite reason to pursue God’s word is found in the very beginning of the Gospel of John. What is it?
John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
This verse is talking about Jesus. He is the Living Word. Pursing God’s Word is pursuing Jesus. We read the Scriptures and get to know our God and Savior. That’s the reason I put the lesson on fellowship before the lesson on Bible reading. Bible reading isn’t for gaining knowledge so you can do well on trivia games. Bible reading is for spending time in fellowship with God. When you sit down with your Bible, sit down with Jesus. Talk to Him as you read, ask questions, thank Him. He can speak to you through the Scriptures. A verse may directly answer a question you asked. As you read, something may dawn on you and suddenly you understand something. That’s the Lord speaking to you.
While you should have a habit of daily Bible reading, I want you to read the Bible because it’s your delight, not your duty. Delight in spending time with God, getting to know Him. He will also teach you about yourself and who you are to Him. Even if there isn’t some big new thing you learned, you are spending time with God when you are reading in fellowship with Him, listening to Him speak to you by reading His word. And that is worth your time and can bring delight. I picture Jesus with me while I am reading, so it’s easy to ask Him questions or just look up and smile at Him in response to something I read. If I’m at our table, I will literally pull up a chair turned towards me for Jesus to sit in and picture Him there and talk with Him as I read.
In the temple there was a morning and evening sacrifice. I think Bible reading is a good thing to put at the beginning and end of your day. I do that and also read in the afternoon and evening. I love God’s Word! Part of my Bible reading is reading quantity. I read through the Bible in a year (or faster). But also part of my Bible reading is reading slowly, maybe just one verse. Sometimes, it’s more study, and I will write out the verse and underline things and draw arrows and write questions and comments. I like to finish a Bible study time by writing in my own words what the verse or passage teaches. There’s something to be said for reading the whole Bible regularly and getting familiar with it and keeping it before you, but if that’s all you do, you can miss a lot because it goes by too fast. You’ll have to work out how you will read the Bible in fellowship with God. And it will change. It doesn’t have to be just one way. Don’t copy me or anyone else. Find your groove with the Holy Spirit. The Bible says the Holy Spirit is your teacher (John 14:26, 1 John 2:27, Nehemiah 9:20), so make sure to ask God to teach you as you read. Always read in fellowship with God.
Another great thing about God’s word, besides how it teaches us and guides us in the way to go, is that it is always the same. God is unchanging, so His word is unchanging. All of His promises in the Bible are unchanging. We can count on God. We can count on God’s word.
Mark 13:31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
I remember the first time I realized the Lord spoke directly to me through the Bible. I was a teenager, home on a Saturday night while my brother was out at a party. I was in my room, sitting on my bed, and I opened the Bible and the first thing I saw was, “Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong.” God was speaking directly to me and encouraging me about where the best place was to be that evening.
The Bible is God’s Word to you. You probably won’t have experiences like that every day, but you won’t need that from Him every day. Hopefully! You can always know God’s Word is God teaching you. Learn from His Word; learn from Him. Thank Him for whatever you read. Keep the Lord as part of your Bible reading. If you ever find yourself treating Bible reading like a chore instead of something you want to do, confess and ask for help. Repentance always brings reviving.
Lesson Point: Read the Bible because you love God and want to know Him. Read the Bible as part of your fellowship with God.
Challenge Question: Do you view Bible reading as a delight or a duty? Ask Him to help you delight in His Word.