Reading and Studying the Bible

Text: 2 Timothy 2:15

Reading and studying the Bible are two different things, yet they are also related. Reading is about acquiring knowledge and seeing what the text saysStudying is about acquiring understanding and seeing what the text means. In this lesson, we are going to focus on when, why, and how to read and study the Bible.

When to Read and Study the Bible

  • Read and study regularly (1 Timothy 4:13) – we are to be constantly nourished on God’s word (1 Timothy 4:6); the Bereans were “noble-minded” because they searched the Scriptures daily (Acts 17:11)
  • In addition to what is done with the local church (assemblies, Bible classes) – these times are important (Hebrews 10:25; Proverbs 27:17); but these times should not be the entirety of our time reading and studying (Acts 17:11; 2 Timothy 2:15)
  • How to find time to read and study – make sure it is a priority (Matthew 6:33); strive to make time for it (Ephesians 5:16)

Why Read and Study the Bible

  • Read and study to understand – God has given us His word so we can understand His will (Ephesians 3:4; 1 Corinthians 2:10-12); seek to determine His will (Ephesians 5:17; 2 Timothy 2:15); do not settle for human opinion
  • Read and study to be encouraged – the word of God has been revealed to give us encouragement and hope (Romans 15:4); we can take comfort in God’s promises (1 Thessalonians 4:18) which will motivate us to continue (2 Timothy 4:6-8)
  • Read and study to be able to teach – all Christians are expected to be able to teach in some capacity (1 Peter 3:15); does not mean that all will be preachers or elders (James 3:1; Titus 1:9-10), but all can teach; however, we must know the word in order to be able to teach (Hebrews 5:12; 1 Timothy 1:7)

How to Read and Study the Bible

  • Remember that it is from God (2 Timothy 3:16) – not the word of man (1 Thessalonians 2:13)
  • Read and study with humility (James 1:21) – God’s word is always right (Psalm 119:89, 160); we cannot argue/contend with Him (Job 40:2)
  • Read and study with an intent to obey (James 1:22) – not just an academic exercise; wisdom means hearing and obeying (Matthew 7:24-27); claiming to believe God and His word without obedience is useless (James 2:14-18; 1 John 2:3-6)
  • Remember that it is the final standard (John 12:48) – our standard is not what seems right to us (Proverbs 14:12); to neglect reading and studying the word of God is destructive to our souls (Hosea 4:6)

Conclusion

  • It is not just good to read and study the Bible – it is essential
  • How else will we know God’s will to be able to obey it and teach it to others?
  • If it is not already, we need to make this a priority and a regular part of our lives

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