As a pastor I get to spend time talking with people with many different backgrounds, personalities, and life stories. I love people, and I love hearing their stories and learning about their lives. It is humbling and sobering sometimes to be the person that people come to for advice. My wife and I have counseled with many different people during our years in ministry. And as reflect on the conversations we have had, I find that there is one piece of advice that I have given to just about every person I have counseled.
It is something that applies to people who have been walking with Jesus for 30 years or 3 days. It has helped atheists, those who call themselves spiritual, and those who are far from God. I have shared this with friends that are married, single, bisexuals or homosexuals. It has even helped people who are super wealthy, unemployed, or homeless. I could go on, but you get my point…this piece of advice is for everyone—even YOU!
So, are you ready to get to it and find out what it is?
It is very simple. READ THE BIBLE.
I know this sounds simple…because it is! I believe there is nothing better for people to do than to read the Bible. To know the thoughts and will of God by reading His Word, studying His Word and applying His Word. It is one of the greatest investments we can make. This is because the Word of God doesn’t return void! This means that it will always change us. It doesn’t enter our minds and go back out again without having an effect on who we are! Reading the Bible is always profitable for our lives. Listen to what the prophet Isaiah says about God’s Word:
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.” -Isa 55:9-11
God gives us His Word for a reason! His Word is inspired by His Spirit (2 Peter 1:20-21), it is profitable for our lives (2 Tim 3:16-17), it washes us of impurity (Eph 5:26 ), it revives our souls (Psalm 19 ), it builds our faith (Rom 10:17 ), it proves itself to be true and guards us (Prov 30:5; John 17:17), It brings us peace (Phil 4:8-9; Psalm 18:30 ), it gives us wisdom (Psalm 119:105), it gives us hope (Rom 15:4), it helps us mature in our faith (1 Peter 2:2), it brings life (John 6:63) it points us to Jesus (John 5:39), Jesus’ disciples should abide in it (John 8:31), it is to be desired more than gold (Psalm 19:10-11), it is to be mediated on day and night (Psalm 1:1-2), it is to be studied (2 Tim 2:15) it is to be obeyed (John 13:17; Joshua 1:7-8), and it will never pass away (Matt 24:35; Isaiah 40:8).
Not only does the Bible declare itself to be powerful, but many people have been changed by reading it and seen God work in their lives because of it! I have been changed by reading the Bible, and as I continue to do this, I can see why so many godly men and women have said similar things…
"Nobody ever outgrows Scriptures; the Book widens and deepens with our years” -Charles H Spurgeon
“Nothing less than a whole Bible can make a whole Christian.” -A. W. Tozer
“Christians cannot live victoriously when disconnected from the Word of God” - Brian Brodersen
”The bible is a mine that can never be exhausted of all of it's treasures." - Levi Lusko
"The BIBLE is the Constitution of Christianity” -Billy Graham
“A thorough knowledge of the Bible is worth more than a college education.” -Theodore Roosevelt
The word of God has changed my life and has blessed me. I believe so strongly in the value of God’s Word that I have made my life about studying and teaching it. Remember, God’s Word won’t return void, so you won’t regret reading it. Even if there doesn’t seem to be an instant change or impact on us, we can know that it will bring forth fruit and point us to Jesus. So yes, I give this simple piece advice all the time: READ THE BIBLE! And I will continue to do so. I want everyone I know to experience the joy of reading, studying and obeying God’s Word.
My prayer is that you would make this a daily practice too, and see all that God wants to do in and through you! Even if you’ve never read the Bible before, it is not too late to start. God always speaks through His Word. You can CLICK HERE for some tips on HOW to study the Bible, whether it is brand new to you or not! So, quit reading this blog, and go pick up your Bible! You’ll be glad you did.