Bible Study (Part 6)

This entry was previously published by me on another blog. Due to its relevance, I have included it here.

Good afternoon, ladies. I hope you are enjoying your day, and you are feeling the presence of God in a fresh, new way today, in a way that is special and precious between you and Him. Please know I pray for my friends here regularly, and that is my prayer for you today. Blessings to you!

Today we’re going to do a little reading and sharing, I hope. The topic for today is as follows:

What are the Benefits of Studying the Bible Regularly?

We’ve danced around this subject a few times. For those who have read the previous entries, you may feel this is a little repetitive. Up to this point, I’ve hoped to encourage you to see a lot of the benefits of study in different facets. Now, we’re taking it a step further.

I confess I have a hard time studying the Word seven out of seven days in the fifty-two weeks of the year. My life has a tendency to get busy, and I become distracted. Sometimes I have a hard time waking before my children, and that’s all it takes to feel like I’m behind the eight ball for the rest of the day. Study at night doesn’t work for me very well, as my brain appears to shut down at 8:30 p.m. Sadly, my body doesn’t follow that schedule, so I am a bit like an empty shell walking around by 9:00 p.m. (Too much information?) What I’m trying to say is, if I don’t study in the morning, I personally won’t get to it. This is a factor I have to remember for myself. This season of life has some constraints for me, and maybe only me.

Another key thing I see in my own life is that Bible study, to me, is a bit like the manna in the Old Testament. Do you remember that it was only good for the day, and it became rancid when stored (except for the Sabbath)? I find I am only spiritually “sharp” when I am regularly in the Word. Maybe that’s just me. Regular times in the Word keep me sharp, instead of rusty.

How does this relate to the regular Bible study topic? I am fully aware my study times have to fall within a certain window of time and be fairly often for full effect in my life. For me, regular times mean scheduling it in, and then following that schedule to the best of my ability. (Don’t get too far ahead and think this is turning into academic drudgery or spiritual “hoops”. We’re not to the fun part yet!) 😉

So, I have chosen my regular times of study, maybe even the location, too. What are the benefits if I actually follow through on this little plan? Is it really going to make a difference? Will I become some sort of spiritual giant next week if I study this week? Am I just going to be more full in the head, but never changing the heart?

The Bible offers wonderful examples of benefits. Does it actually use the word “study” in some of them? No. But, the example is clear enough we can safely decide study of the Scriptures was definitely part of it.

Psalm 119:11 says, “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” (We can avoid sin!)

Simeon took [Jesus] in his arms and praised God, saying, “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.” ~Luke 2:28-32 (Simeon was familiar with Isaiah’s writings, and recognized the Messiah by the Holy Spirit’s prompting.)

As is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: “A voice of one calling in the desert, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for Him. Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough was smooth. And all mankind will see God’s salvation.'” ~Luke 3:4-6 (John the Baptist knows God’s salvation, recognizes it, and tells others!)

Luke 4:1-13 (Jesus is tested in the wilderness, and His response to Satan’s misuse of Scripture is to use it rightly!)

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” ~2 Timothy 3:16-17 (The Word instructs and equips.)

“Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.” ~1 Timothy 4:16 (Preserving doctrine is very important. Sound doctrine comes from the Word.)

“Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.” ~Acts 17:11 (It produces “more noble character” in us and shows good teaching for what it is.)

These examples are wonderful, and I love how God has shown some of the benefits. As a result of studying and knowing the Scriptures, I think we are more easily prompted by the Holy Spirit. We recognize God’s activity and leading in our lives more readily. We are taught, rebuked, corrected and trained and, at the same time, able to do the same for others. We are equipped for all we’ll do each day as we walk with the Lord. Our doctrine and beliefs match the Word, and sound doctrine is preserved. (I am all too familiar with the slippery slope, personally.) Our character becomes more like Jesus’, and we have a “more noble” character. Yesterday we thought about the protection we have as a result of the “sword of the Spirit”. All these things sound great, don’t they?

I also love the various real experiences God has given me as I am walking in the Word regularly. I’ve heard the lyrics to a worship song and recognized where they came from with a fuller understanding of the context. (A nice blessing and a springboard for “worship meets study.”) One verse in teaching has led the Holy Spirit to bring to mind others, which gave me a fuller understanding of the teaching, or allowed the Holy Spirit to speak to me intimately about the teaching. When troubles came, I was reminded of the truth, love, power, and promises of God in His Word. When I needed wisdom, I may have had it from past study, or I knew I could find it in the Word. I’ve heard something questionable, and I’ve been prompted to hold it to the Scripture standard for final evaluation.

Consider sharing the benefits you’ve seen over time with regular Bible study in your life! We’d all love to be encouraged by knowing there is fruit from the labor.

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