“But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.” – 2 Timothy 3:14-17.
Research is proving what we intuitively know. We have become a cliff notes society. Research on how people read websites found that 79 percent scanned any new page they came across; only 16 percent read the content word by word. In websites and in printed media you have a few seconds to attract a person’s attention before it is lost forever. Forty years ago, the newspaper was read daily in homes across America. Today we skim RSS feeds and if something doesn’t attract our attention we do not go any further than the headline.
And with the constant advancement of technology, we are becoming people who are relentless scanners for information. This is not a bad thing, of course, but we must remember that technological advancements are never free—they always cost us something. So while we have a limitless amount of information at our fingertips, we have lost our love for reading and for digging deeper into a subject.
Unfortunately, the same phenomenon is happening in the church. When I ask people how much time they spend reading their Bible, they look surprised. They tell me in all sincerity that they need to do a better job of reading their Bible, or they need to make it a bigger priority. But, when I ask them why they don’t read their Bible more, their answers are “I don’t have time” or “I’m not sure how to do it effectively.”
I certainly don’t know the precise reason, however, but I do wonder if we delight in the Bible. Or, do we just scan it for information. We don’t drink it in and digest it and thus miss the eternal source of truth, wisdom and knowledge that cannot be found anywhere else. The Bible has expositions on various aspects of life, finances, work, management, marriage, and relationships to name a few. It has practical wisdom that can be applied to every area of human life. The Bible has accounts of the failures and successes of various biblical figures that have relevance to our current generation. We can study such biblical characters to discern what made them succeed and incorporate that into our life.
If you do not regularly read your Bible, I would encourage you to ask God to help you start or rekindle your love for His word. Then we should read. And read some more. We know that faith comes from hearing the Word of God. So read, digest, dwell, meditate, and grow in your faith in God through the Bible. Take the Bible with you everywhere you go. Remember a passage and try to apply it to your life. If there is something you don’t understand, read a Bible commentary and ask someone who can help you find the answer.
The Bible has incredible power to transform your life. It should be your daily resource. Dwight Moody said it best: “The Bible was not given for our information but for our transformation.”
Get in your Bible today and let God’s Word get in you.
- Read 2 Timothy 3:16-17. Do you believe the Bible, as God’s inspired Word, can be trusted fully to teach us truth and shape our lives?
- How much time each week do you spend reading your Bible? How much time do you think you should spend?
- Was there a time when the Bible helped you see something wrong in your life? How has the Bible enabled you to see Jesus more clearly? How does the Word of God prepare and equip you for everyday life?
- Pray and ask God to give you the discipline to spend time in His word every day.