Happy New Year!
Today, in preparation for beginning our Bible reading plan on 3 January, we are listening to John MacArthur speak on “How to Know the Bible” — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sIfxH6vGT_o
A few thoughts from his teaching below:
Don’t study books about the Bible until you have studied the Bible. Study the Bible daily and deeply.
– You must be fed by God’s word in order to grow.
– You must study the Bible (the sword of the Spirit) to defeat Satan’s temptation and sin — “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” (Psalm 119:11)
– You must study God’s word to prepare yourself to Serve the Lord – “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:8-9)
– You must study the Scripture in order to be blessed – “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.” (Psalm 1:1-2)
– You must study the Bible to help others – “…but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect…. (1 Peter 3:15)
– Before you can study the Bible you must prepare to study it. First, you should begin with a time of prayer, confessing your sin and purifying your mind before God – “So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander.” (1 peter 2:1) “Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.” (James 1:21)
– First, get into the habit of daily, systematic reading, and then build upon your ability to actually study the Bible – consistency first, then intensity. Use secondary sources only after you have studied God’s word for yourself with the Holy Spirit as your Teacher. Get a good concordance, topical index, Bible atlas, concordance, etc. All of these things are available for free at www.e-sword.net
– Study the Bible with somebody else – get a Bible study buddy.
– Submit to teaching, and teach others what you have learned from your own Bible study – You learn best when you seek to be prepared to teach.
“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 1 January 22: Pray that God will prepare your heart to diligently, humbly, and receptively receive His word as it is intended by Him and to and apply His word in 2022 in accordance with His will.