Monday, July 16, 2018

"When Reading Scripture"

(Friends: the following is an outline of truths to consider about the Bible that prepare our hearts and minds for reading God's Word and experiencing the gift it is to trusting hearts in the Lord Jesus Christ.  I shared this at one of our meetings yesterday and thought you might be interested. Thanks, Glen)

"When Reading Scripture"

    When reading the Bible, we do well to keep certain truths in mind.

1.  The Bible is both a Voice and a Book.  Like the living Word the Lord Jesus, the Bible is both Divine and human.
    "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness" (II Timothy 3:16).
    "Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the Scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit" (II Peter 1:20-21).

II.  The written Word, the Bible, exists to reveal and glorify the living Word, the Lord Jesus.
    "Search the Scriptures, for in them ye think ye have eternal life.  And they are they which testify of Me" (John 5:39).
    "In Thy light shall we see light" (Psalm 36:9).

III.  The Holy Spirit must illuminate, interpret, and apply the Bible to our hearts, minds, and lives.
    "Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God, which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ" (I Corinthians 2:12-16).  

IV.  The Bible illuminates, encourages, and challenges.
    "Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path" (Psalm 119:105).
    "Strengthen Thou me according to Thy Word…Thy Word hath quickened me" (Psalm 119:28; 105).
    "All Scripture… is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction" (I Timothy 3:16).

V.  Read rightly, with a trusting, humble heart, the Bible provides personal communion with God.

         "If a man love me, he will keep My words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him" (John 14:23).

VI.  We grow in the knowledge of God's love, and love Him in response by regularly reading His Word.
    "But whoso keepeth His word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in Him" (I John 2:5).

VII.  Reading God's Word prepares us to love people.
    "If ye fulfil the royal law according to the Scripture, "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself," ye do well" (James 2:8).

"Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy Word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by Thy name, O LORD God of hosts" (Jeremiah 15:16).

Weekly Memory Verse
    "Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy Word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by Thy name, O LORD God of hosts" (Jeremiah 15:16).

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