As Christians we are encouraged to read our Bible regularly. Can I propose that this isn’t really an option? If we want to finish the race that God has called us to run, reading our bible is a necessity. Why?
1) Because God’s Word purifies us. Just before he was betrayed, Jesus prayed for all those who would believe in Him: “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. (John 17:17) To sanctify means to make holy, to purify or free from sin. Jesus tells us here that God’s Word is the agent of sanctification. Biblical Truth frees us from the stain and power of sin.
2) Because God’s Word transforms us. Romans 12:2 says, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” We are inundated with advertising, ideas and messages which run contrary to God’s will and His values. If we are not actively seeking to “be transformed” by renewing our minds in His Word, we will conform to this world.
3) Because God’s Word corrects and trains us. Paul reminded Timothy, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work”. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
4) Because God’s Word puts us in our place and humbles us. “Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven, and you are on earth, so let your words be few” (Ecclesiastes 5:2). JI Packer says “Christian minds have been conformed to the modern spirit; the spirit, that is, that spawns great thoughts of man and leaves room for only small thoughts of God”. Our God is great, we are not! We need to read His Word to be reminded of our own limitations and His infinite power.
5) Because if we don’t know God’s truth, we will be deceived: “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths” (2 Timothy 4:3-4).
“But I don’t want to read the Bible,” you say? “I don’t have time. I don’t like to read. It feels like I’m doing it for the wrong reasons if you tell me I have to.” Well, I’ll let you in on a secret; it’s a daily decision for me too. Each time I sit down to read God’s Word there are many other things calling for my attention and sometimes I succumb to laziness and distraction. I have to consciously decide to read as an act of obedience. As I do, I pray that the Holy Spirit will speak to me through His Word; I pray that He will make me “hunger and thirst for righteousness” (Matthew 5:6). I meet regularly with a study group because I need accountability. Left to my own devices, I would be ”Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, Prone to leave the God I love; Here’s my heart, O take and seal it, Seal it for Thy courts above”.
If you still need convincing, read Psalm 119 and list all the benefits of knowing God’s Word.
Happy Reading! (Or, if reading isn’t an option, Happy Listening!) Follow this link to subscribe to an ESV Podcast.
Pastor of Women
Northview Women Updates
- 140 women are participating in our “Overview of the Bible” study on Wednesday Mornings, and many more are working through the study on their own; watching our on-line teaching and working through the workbook. Check out the sessions and email us if you want to join in. Scroll down to the bottom of the Wednesday Morning Study page here and click on the button that says “View Sessions”.
- 60 – 70 women are participating in the ‘Jesus the One and Only’ Study on Monday nights.
- Our Tuesday morning MOM’s group is a great place to visit with other MOMs and grow in your faith! This week Rebecca Schroeder, a family counsellor will be speaking on connecting with your child. View info on MOMs here.
- Brandie (Director of Youth), Thaleia (Pastor of Care) and me (Kristal) just recorded our first podcast yesterday :-). We will inform you when it is on-line so that you can listen in. We plan to do this every other week; our goal is to talk through biblical responses to issues that all of us face everyday. If you have suggestions for a podcast name or topics, feel free to email them in! You can reply to this blog post, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Stay tuned for info on our upcoming Women’s Retreat: Jan 31 – Feb 2, 2014.