Monday, December 3, 2012

Bored With the Bible?

Some good material on Bible reading and study, from Elliot Ritzema at The Resurgence:

Reading the Bible is a discipline, which means it isn’t always fun.

But we persist in studying because we know that it is God’s Word to us, and because we know that in spite of a dry spell here and there, God’s Word is absolutely dependable (Isa. 55:10–11). Devoting ourselves to Bible study will pay off in the long run. Charles Spurgeon offers us a blunt reminder to not neglect this discipline: “There is dust enough on some of your Bibles to write ‘damnation’ with your fingers.” If you need some encouragement to dust off your Bible today, perhaps these words from men of faith can help.

1. You’ll never run out of things to learn from the Bible. No matter how much you study, there’s always more to discover.

Such is the depth of the Christian Scriptures, that even if I were attempting to study them and nothing else from early boyhood to decrepit old age, with the utmost leisure, the most unwearied zeal, and talents greater than I have, I would be still daily making progress in discovering their treasures.
 —Richard Baxter

2. It’s worthwhile to invest the time to do more than a quick skim.

Remember, it is not hasty reading, but serious meditating upon holy and heavenly truths, that makes them prove sweet and profitable to the soul. It is not the bee’s touching of the flower that gathers honey, but her abiding for a time upon the flower that draws out the sweet. It is not he that reads most, but he that meditates most, that will prove the choicest, sweetest, wisest, and strongest Christian.
—Thomas Brooks

3. Neglecting Bible study can affect other parts of your faith.

In order to enjoy the Word, we ought to continue to read it, and the way to obtain a spirit of prayer, is, to continue praying; for the less we read the Word of God, the less we desire to read it, and the less we pray, the less we desire to pray.
—George Müller

4. Knowing God’s Word is the key to living our faith.

The Bible applied to the heart by the Holy Ghost is the chief means by which men are built up and established in the faith, after their conversion. It is able to cleanse them, to sanctify them, to instruct them in righteousness, and to furnish them thoroughly for all good works.
—J. C. Ryle