by Omolola Oriogun
Many times, I’ve often wondered how easy it for us Christians to read novels by Karen Kingsbury, Randy Alcorn, Francine Rivers, John Grisham, Lori Wick, Frank Peretti, Ted Dekker, Bodie & Brock Theone; Tim Lahaye and many more but find it difficult to sit with the word of GOD.
I’ve observed severally, listening to some Christians make comments like these – if you want to sleep, read the bible. I don’t like reading KJV because the english is archaic. The bible is a boring book etc – and this people can sit hours with novels or textbooks, even movies and games.
As believers, we’ve often heard many times how important it is for us to study the Word of GOD. We most times want to try but consequently have a difficult time really getting started. With that, let’s look at why studying the Word of GOD is vital to our Christian growth and maturity.
What so many Christians don’t realize is that the Word of GOD is alive! The Word can really affect and have a life-changing impact on your day-to-day living. It’s been discovered that GOD reveals HIMSELF through HIS Word from Genesis to Revelation.
You get to know GOD and all about HIM as you study HIS word and stay in HIS presence often. The reason we study the Bible is that we may know GOD, know HIS ways and walk in them. It’s only then we can truly live a successful Christian life.
The Bible is a personal message from GOD Almighty to you, handed down through the ages. The main theme of this message is JESUS CHRIST. JESUS is the living Word, the message of GOD to all mankind.
You can NEVER find GOD in a textbook, Christian novel, Christian movies, games etc. Some of them may point your attention to the fact that you need to know GOD better. But you will definitely find GOD in HIS word (bible), Prov. 8:17; Jer. 29:13-14; Amos 5:4; Matt. 7:7; Matt. 11:29; and John 15:7.
Ever since the Fall of Adam in the Garden of Eden, GOD was unwilling to leave us in our sin and live without us. So HE had a plan, the plan of redemption, that’s when HE gave HIS Son to pay the price for our sin on the Cross and thereby bring us back into fellowship with Him, John 3:16; 1John 4:8-10,19; Rom. 5:5-6 and many more. Therefore, look for JESUS in every book of the Bible.
GOD’s Word is our very source of liberty. Be mindful that, while the Bible is GOD’s inspired Word, it was also meant to be down-to-earth. Don’t just reverently give it a place of honour on a bookshelf, but treat the Word as your personal hands-on reference book on life issues for everyday living. Get rid of the negative idea that it is just a set of rules, boring book or tablets for sleep.
To get started especially as a first timer, pray for understanding and discernment of the scriptures. Allow the Holy Spirit, who inspired the Word of GOD, to reveal it to you. Read and think about each word in each scripture. You can check meanings, too, by using a concordance to study the Greek or Hebrew root words.
Knowing why studying the Bible is important will hopefully make it easier for you to make that quality decision followed by pure and simple grit-your-teeth determination. We suggest treating this period of study as an appointment that you’re required to attend. Every day, follow through by building your schedule around this appointment, and not the other way around. Before you know it, you’ll develop a desire to attend your study and it will become easier and easier. And if you miss an appointment once in a while, don’t worry, just get back in the flow.
As you get started studying, it is wise to use a Bible you feel free to write in and take notes. Start underlining scriptures that have significance and special meaning to you. This will help personalise the Word for you. Marking these scriptures will also help you find them more readily when you need them.
An important part of your study of the Word is ‘Meditation’. To meditate means to think deeply and continuously, ponder or reflect. It also means to murmur, to mutter and to converse with oneself. This takes some time. Read the scripture over and over again as you pray in the spirit. Meditation brings your spirit and your mind together and builds a capacity for your faith to be released (Rom. 10:17). Ask the Holy Spirit to open the eyes of your understanding so you can comprehend the deep things of GOD. Then expect the LORD to do it. Expect HIM to meet you on the level of your need and reveal HIS Word to you.
Make sure what GOD says is the FINAL authority in your life. Living on HIS word produces results (Matthew 7:24-27). Also, you will find out that what you really believe in your heart is what you speak all the time and what you speak determines what happens in your life (Mark 11:23).
Like a sponge, soak in as much Word as possible. Then, when you are faced with a situation that requires the wisdom of GOD, the life of GOD will flow from you, through your words, to meet any man’s need on any level. And that’s the best way to study the Word with the intent of helping and loving others as well as yourself.
My conclusion is, fall in love much more with your bible than with your textbooks, novels and whatever books you like.