Let’s start with an easy question – do you like to read? Oh, the days of reading chapter books with no care in the world. I remember reading mini-series titles. I couldn’t wait to get to the next one. It was mindless reading and kept my mind off my problems and the real world. Flipping crisp pages and hunting for cool bookmarks was one of my favorite past times. Reading books still is, only now I spend most of my time reading one book – God’s Word, the Bible.
The Bible has become my book of choice, my go-to book for most everything in life. Why clutter my bookshelf with various genres when the BIble covers them all. History. Drama. Romance. Suspense. Discipline. HowTo. Guidance. The days of mindless reading are over for me. Now I study the Bible.
Today, we will look at the next step for new believers, and I might add, for old believers.
Step 4 in our continuing miniseries – Study the Bible.
And as has been the case for the first three sessions, we take our material from the book titled, Beginning Steps – A Growth Guide for New Believers.” I cannot improve on the information, and I have no way of getting this book to you, so this is the next best avenue.
Ready? Let’s go.
“God wants an intimate, personal relationship with you. You are not just an acquaintance or a distant relative – you are his child. This relationship can be strengthened by studying the Bible – his revelation to you.
Hebrews 4:12 says that God’s Word is living and active. This means the Bible is more than a book, more than words on a page. It is more than words spoken in ancient times. The Bible is relevant; it addresses the needs of today.
1.God’s Word has specific purposes. (Read 2 Timothy 3:16).
God’s Word is useful for teaching. (Read Jeremiah 31:3; Romans 5:8)
God’s Word is useful for rebuking (to point out a fault) and convicting of sin. (Read Ephesians 4:26-31)
God’s Word is useful for correction of error. Not only does the Bible convict, but it also corrects. Psalm 119 points out the psalmist’s experience with God’s Word. This psalm teaches that God’s Word gives directions for living.
As God’s Word takes root in your heart, your faults and defects will be corrected by the Bible’s influence.
God’s Word is useful for training in righteousness. (godly behavior). Bible study is your spiritual food. Just as your physical body benefits from nutrients in the food you eat, your spiritual life benefits from consistent Bible study. Jeremiah 15:6 says, “When your words came, I ate them.”
2. There are several methods of learning God’s Word. One of these can be compared to the fingers of your hand. It is easy to lose grip if you hold something with only one or two fingers. If you hear, read, study, memorize, and meditate on God’s Word, your grasp of its truth will become a firm part of your life.
Hear – Listen to your pastor’s sermons and take notes. Listen to Bible studies online.
Read – Set a goal to read a certain amount from the Bible each day.
Study – When you study, ask questions:
- What promise is there to claim?
- What example is there to follow?
- What command is there to obey?
- What sin is there to confess and forsake?
Memorize – Memorizing Scripture gives you the opportunity to share God’s Word and assist you in overcoming sin. Seek to memorize at least one Scripture verse every week.
Meditate – Meditation is spiritual digestion. It is analyzing and dwelling on a verse over and over. Meditate on a Scripture verse during the day as you drive, rest, walk, jog, and play.
Approach Bible study expectantly. Use the prayer from Psalm 119:18, “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law.”
Let’s finish up with a question to ponder. When would be a good time each day for you to spend in Bible study?
Remember: God’s Word is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness.
Disclaimer: The above material was taken from the book titled “Beginning Steps – A Growth Guide For New Believers” published by the North American Mission Board.
This little booklet was so helpful to me. I hope it helps you as well.
Join me tomorrow as we look at Step 5. I can’t wait!