Tuesday, May 1, 2012

14 Tips for Successful Bible Reading (part 1)

I want to thank Mike Riley and the Brotherhood for a great weekend! The men’s conference was a smashing success and everyone involved could sense the work of the Holy Spirit. I rejoice in the wonderful testimonies we heard Sunday and I am thankful that God is at work in our midst!

I have been asked to write about how to have a successful time studying the Bible. I would like to spend two weeks sharing 14 tips for successful Bible reading. :
1. Recognize that the Bible is inspired.
The entire Bible, both Old and New Testaments, is the inspired Word of God. During your Bible study, keep in mind that He inspired the words you are reading; God is directly speaking to you through them (2 Peter 1:21; Philippians 2:5; John 6:63).
2. Plan time for Bible study.
It's easy to let everyday concerns interfere, so schedule Bible study time and try to maintain it. Over time you will look forward to this daily experience (Ephesians 5:15-17).
3. Pray for understanding.
Before you even begin, ask God to guide and show you His will. Remember that it is the Creator who gives true understanding through His Word. You cannot gain it on your own (Psalm 119:33-40; Proverbs 3:5-8; Jeremiah 9:23-24).
4. Keep an open mind.
Be willing to admit when you are wrong and change, even if it means letting go of a long-held belief or tradition. If you can successfully apply this one principle, you will be far ahead in the race for spiritual truth (Acts 17:11; Isaiah 8:20).
5. Seek instruction and correction.
Approach the Bible study with a teachable, humble attitude. The Word of God judges our innermost thoughts. It can show us who we really are. It can reveal every flaw in our character. So be ready to heed its correction (Jeremiah 10:23-24; Isaiah 66:1-2; Isaiah 66:5; Romans 8:6-9; Matthew 5:48).
6. Let the Bible interpret itself.
If something seems confusing or even contradictory, let clear biblical passages shed light on those you find difficult to understand. Scriptures do not contradict each another; they complement each other. Also, to properly understand a verse in the Bible, don't force your personal point of view into it. Instead use the context and other relevant scriptures to find the correct meaning (2 Peter 1:20; John 10:35; John 17:17; Isaiah 28:9-10).
7. Bible Study topics.
Concentrate, at various times, on one subject, doctrine or book. Use a concordance or other Bible study aid to put together all the scriptures relevant to a subject. This will allow you to see all that God has to say about a particular topic (2 Timothy 2:15, KJV).

May we spend quality time this week with Jesus as we encounter Him in His Word!

-          Bro. Dave

No comments: