Thursday, 8 March 2012

Why study the Bible?

As some friends of mine have just started a weekly Bible study in Uxbridge (West London), I was reminded again of how important it is to read and study and obey the word of God.

But why is studying the Bible so important? There are many good reasons: the Bible teaches us the truth about God, it tells us the good news of Jesus Christ and what He has done for us, and it shows us how we can be reconciled to God and receive the forgiveness and eternal life that Christ offers. These are not just peripheral matters - they are life-and-death matters! The apostle Peter once famously said to the Lord Jesus,

Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. (John 6:68)

Perhaps one of the best statements I know about the Bible and why and how we should read it is found in some editions of New Testaments distributed by The Gideons International, such as this one:

The text reads as follows:
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.

Why not take some time now to read the Bible?

And if you are in the London area, let me encourage you to attend the next evening of the Bible study series "20 Basic Things the Bible Teaches" held in Uxbridge every Friday evening. For more information, see:

The Bible:
Pray it in. Read it through. Live it out. Pass it on.

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