Why should I read the bible?
Maybe you believe in God, but don’t know why you should read your bible. I’m going to attempt to give you an answer that you’ll consider.
I realize this is a subject that could bring about a myriad of feelings. I know some of us can have jaded thoughts or opinions on this topic because of a “religious person” you knew and viewed as a hypocrite or perhaps our upbringing.
All of that aside, I want to focus on the Word of God. I humbly ask that you consider what I’m writing here today.
Heavenly Father, I ask that your Spirit would guide my thoughts on this topic and that your truth would be revealed in the hearts of anyone that reads it. Amen
I’d like to start with John 3:16 which says “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life”. This is the message of the gospel and Jesus is the way, the truth & the life (John 14:6).
Jesus is the only way to God, The Father and the only way to salvation. To know Jesus, we must know The Word of God.
The Bible is The Word of God
When my husband joined the Marine Corps he was given a camouflage pocket bible at boot camp. It’s a Gideon’s International bible and I’d like to share the introduction with you:
The Bible contains the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners, and the happiness of believers. Its doctrines are holy, its precepts are binding, its histories are true, and its decisions are immutable.
Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe, and practice it to be holy. It contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you.
It is the traveler’s map, the pilgrim’s staff, the pilot’s compass, the soldier’s sword and the Christian’s charter. Here too, Heaven is opened and the gates of Hell disclosed.
Christ is its grand subject, our good its design, and the glory of God its end. It should fill the memory, rule the heart and guide the feet. Read it slowly, frequently and prayerfully. It is a mine of wealth, a paradise of glory, and a river of pleasure.
It is given you in life, will be opened at the judgment, and be remembered forever. It involves the highest responsibility, rewards the greatest labor, and will condemn all who trifle with its sacred contents.
Truthfully, did that speak to you in any way? I find it such a marvelous introduction of the bible. I would add that the bible holds everything we need pertaining to life & Godliness. It is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path (Psalm 119:105). In it, we learn the heart & character of God. We learn the will of God for our lives. We find purpose and revelation. God’s Word is alive (Hebrews 4:12) and it’s contents will change your life.
Beginner Bible Basics
#1 The bible is broken down between the Old Testament (Before Jesus enters the story, however we will find prophecy in the OT about Jesus) and the New Testament (After Jesus, meaning He is born and enters the story). However, the bible isn’t just a collection of stories rather as a whole, the bible is one big story, that points to Jesus. Thus, we have the gospel.
The Gospel is that God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son to fulfill the righteous demands of the law. He took our place on the cross, paid the penalty of our sin through His death and resurrection. Jesus Christ made a way for sinful man to be reconciled to a Holy God – to experience the forgiveness of sins and have the hope of heaven.
#2 When you see words in red ink, those are words Jesus spoke.
#3 A star next to a bible verse usually indicates prophecy.
#4 There are many translations of the bible. I read the NKJV (New King James Version) I often compare scriptures from the NKJV to ESV (English Standard Version) or NLT (New Living Translation) because they can be easier to comprehend.
#5 PLEASE make sure you understand the context in which you are reading. If you read a verse, ask yourself who is the writer and who is the writer speaking to and why. You cannot “apply” scriptures willy nilly to circumstances or you’re missing the totality of the Word of God.
“When the child of God looks into the Word of God, he sees the Son of God. And, he is transformed by the Spirit of God to share in the Glory of God.” – Warren Wiersbe
5 Reasons Why you Should Read the Bible
I know beginning the bible can feel overwhelming. For me, it seemed like I was learning a foreign language. I encourage you to pray before you open your bible and ask the Lord to help you understand and lead you through your reading. In time, you will discover the truth & power this book holds. Here are 5 reasons why you should read the bible:
#1 Discernment. So you can discern the truth for yourself. Ephesians warns us not to be tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine. James says for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. We must be equipped with God’s truth so that we are not deceived.
#2 To know the Holy Trinity: Father, Son & Spirit. It’s important to understand the triune God, the divinity of each and our relationship with each. As Paul said in 2 Corinthians 13:14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.
#3 To know God’s Will for your life. Do you know that He knew you while you were in your mother’s womb? Or that He knows every hair on your head? He has plans for you that are exceedingly more than you can imagine. Ephesians 3:20
#4 Protection. The enemy wants us to doubt God, our salvation and ourselves. We need to be equipped with the Armor of God to protect our mind and heart, against lies and temptation.
#5 Love. It is because of God’s love that we can imitate Jesus character. God is love and without knowing love Himself, how are we to love others? The greatest commandment is to love God with all our heart, mind and soul and to love others as ourself. This is not something we can do without the work of the Lord in our lives.
How to start reading the bible
You can find many different bible reading plans online and you can read a daily devotion that could lead you toward an area of scripture you’d like to dig into. I personally recommend starting in the New Testament in the book of Matthew.
I also recommend attending church and joining a bible study which can help you get into your bible & be around like minded believers who will help you grow. Studying your bible is definitely a habit formed through obedience, but with anything, you have to start somewhere. It’s one of those things that gets more familiar with time.
There are also different bible study methods, I personally prefer bible verse mapping. You’ll discover that bible study can look a little different for everyone and ultimately you will conform to what’s best for your personal spiritual growth. Here is a brief example of bible verse mapping:
But He answered and said, “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” Matthew 4:4
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness 2 Timothy 3:16
For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Romans 15:4
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12
Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. Psalm 1:1-3
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. Romans 10:17
And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. Deuteronomy 6:6-8
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:1
Thanks so much for reading. If this was helpful in any way, I’d love to hear from you. Please save for later or forward to encourage a friend.