How to Read the Bible
“The Bible’s hard for me to understand,” I've heard people say. “I’d like to read it, but I just don’t have that much time.” There are as many reasons for not studying God’s Word as there are people, but there is nothing I know of that is more critical to Christian growth than the Bible. When we read, it is important to look at the passage in context, with an eye toward the history and culture of the time. When there are parallel passages in other books of the Bible, we should read them as well.
We are not to seek Biblical support to validate our own circumstances—we are to seek the truth, and apply that truth to our circumstances. Too many people place themselves above the Bible when they should be placing themselves under its authority.
An old German pastor told his congregation to read the Bible as a shipwrecked person who had lost everything at sea. A shipwrecked person is a defeated person. He is needy. We ought to read the Bible with the idea that we have nothing of our own: no righteousness, no merit, no assets. A shipwrecked person is a desperate person. If you are out in the ocean and see a piece of debris floating by, you don’t wait for a bigger piece. You cling to whatever comes along and hope it will hold you up. We should come to the Bible with a desperate hope to hear from God and to be taught by His Holy Spirit. We need His Word to stay afloat in life. What a shipwrecked person needs most is deliverance, and deliverance is the theme of the Bible from beginning to end. It is the scarlet thread of salvation that runs from Eden to Patmos and everywhere in between.
You and I need God’s Word like we need air to breathe and water to drink. Don’t neglect personal reading and study of the Bible for any reason. It’s simply too vital to miss. It will keep you afloat!
Make me know Thy ways, O Lord; teach me Thy paths.
READ THROUGH THE BIBLE
1 Peter 3; Psalm 81-82