Bible reading and study

Bible Reading and Studying

We need to understand there is a difference Bible Reading and Study. Study cannot exist without Reading. But reading can occur without study.

The most common feedback about bible reading issues are probably and mitigation.

1. Lack of understanding
2. No time
3. Lack of focus
4. Lack of interest
5. I do not know how to do it.

1. Lack of understanding
Get a simple guide. May I remind that this is bible reading. It is just like a toddler listening to story. The focus is not on the why and how, but on the WHAT.
Of course as we go along, the bible reveals other details such as why, what, when, why, who, etc… But remember, this is about reading.

2. No time
Just as we have set aside time for our daily activities such as washing of face, changing of clothes, shower, meals, relaxation, hobbies…. BIBLE READING needs to have a slot. So make a SLOT for bible reading.

3. Lack of focus
Do you cook? If yes, you notice most people have a specific time, specific place, and a specific effort done to make sure they focus less a fire erupt?
Yes, focus requires effort. It does not come naturally. Pray to God for put in effort to ensure onself have focus. It probably takes some change of lifestyle and habits.

4. Lack of interest
Interesting. Must one be interested to do something? What if it is a need? Are you interested in bathing? Some yes, so no. Eitherway, both group of people will usually bath. Why? Because it’s refreshing. It cleanses. It prevents skin problems that arises from constant dirt and grime. For those who don’t bath, there is a distinctive odour coming from them. I don’t know, perhaps some can smell “non-Bible” readers? The level of knowledge, and one can certainly tell who had been listening and reading the bible vs one who has not.

5. I do not know how to do it.
As the popular Nike advert says, “Just do it!” Yup. Just get started! Read the bible like a textbook, like a story book, like a newspaper, like a magazine… Read Read Read.
Read it in the morning, read in evening, read it at supper time. Bible, is the food all the time.

No, it does not mean, everything elses stops, but bible reading becomes a habit, a lifestyle.

My Testimony to Bible Reading

1. Lack of understanding
By simply reading the bible by itself, it actually tells me and it is self explanatory. In fact the bible consists of many quotable statements.
In fact by plain reading the bible, it tells me the what, where, when, why, who, how, etc of God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, Sin, Devil, Demons, history, future, etc.
However, to further enhance ones understanding of the bible, there are many “Study Guides” out there. Note, it’s study guide, so we are in fact venturing further beyond just general bible reading.

I personally use Life Application Bible. I have a notebook which I write down a summary of my “take aways” from the most recent reading. I spend about the following amount of time and sequence:

1. 0530h wakey and immediately
2. Prayer – 5 mins (lips moving and whispering)
3. Devotion – 15 mins
4. Bible Reading 30 mins
5. Notes 5 mins
6. Total about 55 mins.
So by the end of the quiet time, it’s almost 0700h, time to pack the kids from up the bed and myself for work. Throughout the day, I’d meditate on God’s word, just as one medidate on how to enhance a golf stroke (I don’t golf). I’d ponder, decipher, pray, question, etc.

2. No time
Personally, I had no time to myself too. I need a quiet moment without distraction. It will be when the family is asleep. So the following time slots is available to me
1. Morning
2. Night
I realised for night slot, I’d tend to be exhausted, and distracted with the day’s activity.
I chose morning 0530h onwards.

It was difficult initially. My body was changing and accustoming to the new wake up time. I felt tire throughout the day. At times, I overslept. I persisted. After a week or two, it was almost natural for me to awaken at 0530h. I used an alarm clock.

3. Lack of focus
I did not had much difficulty in this. Except my laptop. I shut it and removed it. I used books instead to aid me. I realised I had the tendency to “surf” to other sites when I’m suppose to be reading. I removed as much distractions as possible. Oh yes, prayer does help. Ask God for attention and focus.

4. Lack of interest
The fact the I went through all the effort, this is not a problem for me at all. Perhaps I’d share my prior experience. I’ve never had interest in reading the bible myself before. Yes, perhaps a short duration of a few months when I was a teen. Thereafter, nope. I went through the same difficulty when it comes to self reading of the bible. I realised perhaps I was perhaps not putting Christ in priority in my personal life. Yes, I do go to church etc, but my personal life was lacking Christ I percieve. Priority of God was not my utmost. That affected my interest. However, in 2010, my desire to know God was so intense, that I had no choice but to find out and read for myself. Thereafter, there was no turning back. The bible is the best book I’ve ever read even though I’ve not finished it. Currently after 10 months, I’ve cleared NT, OT (skipped Psalms), and now I’m at Daniel. I skipped Psalms as it is the longest book in the bible, and every chapter is a Psalm by itself. I plan to read it seperately.

5. I do not know how to do it.
Neither do I. But I just started and pick up from thence. I asked, I searched. I was frustrated initially. I realised, that should not hold me back. So I kept reading and appreciate all that I do understand and applied them.

I do realise this sharing sounds very self-centered, but I want to close it to be Christ centered. Before was my personal experience, but the end state, I want to share the Godly experience and how I’ve been blessed from Bible reading.

1. In fact it’s the benefits from the 5 issue statements!
2. Better understanding
3. More time (It’s habitual now vs adhoc)
4. Better focus
5. Much more interest (I want to finish the book and read o’r and over again)
6. I’m getting better at doing bible reading!

It is instructed by God.
2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
Psalms 1:2 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

It is commented to be good.
Acts 17:11 they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
2 Tim 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for
instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

It is good for soul searching
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the
dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

It is warned by God of the folly of not knowing
Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge

While most people will say, I do not need to read the bible, as I’m being fed daily by hearing from sermons, from preachers, from friends, etc.
Yes, we hear, but those are bits and pieces, it’s applications, it’s study. It’s not reading. Reading the bible personally will reap a closer relationship
With God. Why?

It is God breathed..

May I suggest a parallel illustration to a common day to day activity?

Bible reading are just like having our regular meals. Without bible reading, we will not grow. By reading, we know, we understand, we grow spiritually. Especially when we have the bible on hand. There are some people for reasons, they can’t have a bible on hand. Yet they too try their very best to know more about God from various means. God did not give us a bible to be set on the table as a deco. Or an item to fill up space on the bookshelf. It is meant to be read.

They are varied type of “eaters”, that can also be likened to bible readers.
1. Quick
2. Moderate
3. Slow
4. Finesse
5. Savor


~ by ymsim on 2010/11/19.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: