Many Christians often miss one key thing when thinking about how to study the Bible. This excerpt from the free How to Breathe New Life into Boring Bible Study guide explains what it is and how to fix it.
Without realizing it, some people approach the Bible as if it were dead—as if God is no longer speaking through it today. In reality, it is very much “alive and powerful” (Heb 4:12). A. W. Tozer writes of God’s Word:
Much of our religious unbelief is due to a wrong conception of and a wrong feeling for the Scriptures of Truth. A silent God suddenly began to speak in a book and when the book was finished lapsed back into silence again forever. Now we read the book as the record of what God said when he was for a brief time in a speaking mood. With notions like that in our heads, how can we believe? The facts are that God is not silent, has never been silent. It is the nature of God to speak. The second Person of the Holy Trinity is called the Word. The Bible is the inevitable outcome of God’s continuous speech. It is the infallible declaration of his mind for us put into our familiar human words.1
If the Bible is the declaration of God’s mind in familiar, human words, perhaps we would fare well to treat it as such. He must want us to understand his thoughts.
In his book How to Study the Bible and Enjoy It, Skip Heitzeg recommends two bits of advice on how to approach studying the Bible:
- 1. Read it like any other book.
- 2. Read it unlike any other book.2
He writes, “[The Bible] is, after all, the living Word of God and should be treated as such. We must interact closely with this ‘book of books,’ allowing our lives to be examined by the piercing white light of its probing truth.”3 Doing so is not always easy, but it is the key to transformation.
God longs for us to seek him in his Word:
Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know. (Jer 33:3 NASB)
The Bible is full of profound mysteries that God reveals to those who love him (Dan 2:28). It’s like a lottery ticket; underneath the silver coating is a prize waiting to be discovered—only God is the one “scratching” off the silver coating and revealing truth that has been there since the beginning of time (Isa 46:10).
Proverbs 2:1–4 says that if you come to Scripture seeking insight and understanding as if hunting “for hidden treasure,” God will pour out wisdom that will be “pleasant for your soul” (Prov 2:10).
Approach Bible study with this in mind—that God has truth he wants you to discover, mysteries he wants to share. Ask him to reveal “great and mighty things you do not know” (Jer 33:3) every time you open your Bible.
He just might answer.
Download the guide for free to read more brief, yet powerful, tips you can start putting into practice today.
- Bible Study: How to Dig Deep into God’s Word
- 29 Bible Study Tools for Reading the Bible More Effectively
- All about Hermeneutics: A Guide to Interpreting God’s Word Faithfully
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- A. W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God: The Human Thirst for the Divine. “The Speaking Voice.” (WingSpread, 2006), 69.
- Skip Heitzig, How to Study the Bible and Enjoy It. (Tyndale, 2002), 32.
- Heitzig, How to Study the Bible, 32.
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