As Christians, we have been blessed with the gift of God's Word - the bible. However, too often we fail to see the value and power behind this gift. We overlook the benefits of reading the bible regularly, and the guaranteed changes that can result when we do.
I have read some very inspirational books, by some very successful leaders in my day. However, no book has ever changed my life the way the bible has. In fact, the simple act of reading my bible regularly makes such an impact in my life that I can tell a noticeable difference on the days I don't read it, versus the days that I do. The bible is that powerful!
Sadly, we live in a world today where many Christians have little to no interest in reading the bible. We ask ourselves questions like:
- Why is it important to read and study the bible?
- Is it worth it to read the bible?
- Does reading the bible make you closer to God?
The problem isn't that the bible has lost power or relevance. God's Word is every bit as powerful today as it's always been. The problem is that we are not accessing it's power. We've gotten so comfortable in our everyday routines that we don't even realize how much more the bible has to offer us.
If you're wondering why you're still stuck dealing with the same hurts, sins, and struggles year after year, then its time to shift your perspective about the bible, so you can begin to finally experience the life-changing power, and benefits of reading God's Word for yourself.
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What Does the Bible Say About Reading the Bible Every day?
Let's start with this beautiful passage from the book of Psalms:
Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither - whatever they do prospers. (Psalms 1:1-3 NIV)
The bible plainly tells us that when we take delight in reading his word daily we will be blessed! So simple, yet so easy for us to leave off our to-do list.
The bible also goes on to tell us that we should be devoting time to reading it regularly:
- Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. Colossians 3:16
- Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. II Timothy 2:15
There is no way the message of Christ can dwell in us richly, or that we can correctly handle (interpret, apply, or teach) God's Word, if we aren't reading our bibles regularly. In doing so, we can teach and encourage others with the word, and present ourselves as an approved steward before God.
What Are the Benefits of Reading the Bible Regularly?
One of my absolute favorite things about God, is that he doesn't just make rules to make rules. Although being God, he certainly could if he wanted to. But God, never tells us to do anything that is not truly for His glory, and in our best interest.
So now that we know God wants us to read his word regularly, let's move on to see why, and what the benefits are for doing so.
#1 - It Shows Us How to Obey and Live For God
It's one thing to make the decision to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior. But, it’s another thing to live for Him after you make that decision. Some people believe it happens overnight due to your newfound faith. Others believe they can change themselves on their own. Both are wrong.
The truth is, scripture teaches, that in order to obey and live for God, a transformation must occur from within. And that transformation comes only by the power of the Holy Spirit within us and by reading the Word of God regularly, which equips us to do his work.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (II Timothy 3:16-17)
Jesus clearly tells his disciples:
If you love me, keep my commands. (John 14:15)
I love this verse because its so simple and plain. If we profess to love God, we will keep his commands (obey his word). But, we can only keep his commands, if we know what they are. And we will only know what they are if we read our bible regularly.
Once you start reading the bible regularly and learning to obey and live for God, as a result you start to grow spiritually. As Christians, we don’t only live on physical food to nourish our bodies. We also need the Word of God for spiritual nourishment.
Let's look at some key verses about feeding on the word of God:
- Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God". Matthew 4:4
- Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good. I Peter 2:2-3
- Jesus declared, "I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty". John 6:35
Just like babies need and crave milk to grow, so we as Christians should crave God's Word (our spiritual milk) so that we can grow in our walk with God. The beauty of God's Word, is that spiritually it will always satisfy us. It won’t even matter if you overeat, because there is no such thing as spiritual obesity!
On the contrary, I guarantee that by staying away from his word you will see the opposite effect. After all, if you stop eating physically, you become malnourished and can even die. In the same way, if we stop eating spiritually, we starve our spirit. Then our walk with God starts to become stagnant, and can even decline.
Ever wonder why there are so many Christians who don’t act, talk or resemble anything Christ-like? Our spiritual nourishment and growth will be in direct correlation to how much time we spend with God.
#3 - Wisdom and Guidance For Life
Another benefit of reading the bible, is that it provides us with wisdom and guidance for life!
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path. (Psalm 119:105)
When we accept the bible as our main guide book for life, we see that it truly has ALL the wisdom and guidance we need for any and everything.
#4 - Peace and Comfort
In some of the most challenging times of my Christian walk, peace is one of the things I prayed for most.
When everything going on around you makes you feel lonely, worried, stressed, frustrated, depressed, and anxious, there is nothing like the peace that only God can provide to calm your mind.
Trust me, the pleasures of this life (alcohol, smoking, sex, etc.) pale in comparison, and only provide temporary relief on a physical scale. But, none of that helps on a spiritual scale. Which is why, when we're left alone, or the sobriety hits, and the high fades, we still feel empty.
Take a look at these awesome verses from Psalms regarding the peace and comfort that comes from reading God's Word:
- My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life. Psalm 119:50
- Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble. Psalm 119:165
- I weep with grief; my heart is heavy with sorrow; encourage and cheer me with your words. Psalm 119:28
Sometimes, the promises of God’s word may be the only thing that can provide comfort when you’re going through certain things. That renewed strength that comes from reading His Word can give you that extra push you need to keep moving forward in whatever situation you may be facing. We can literally cry out to God and ask him to encourage and cheer us up with His Word!
One of my favorite verses is:
You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. (Isaiah 26:3)
Regularly reading God’s Word can keep you in state of perfect peace, as it builds your faith in knowing God is always with you.
That is the importance of reading the bible.
#5 - Hope and Healing
All of us have experienced times where we did not see immediate results. Whether it was for a change in a situation at home, a prayer for a new job, getting over a relationship, or just waiting on God to answer a prayer in general.
It's in those times of waiting that we really have to place our trust in God, and the fact that He knows what is best for us. His Word gives us this necessary hope when we start to doubt, or even lose faith:
- I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope. Psalm 130:5
- Do not snatch the word of truth from my mouth, for I have put my hope in your laws. Psalm 119:43
- I rise before dawn and cry for help; I have put my hope in your word. Psalm 119:47
- You are my refuge and my shield; your Word is my source of hope. Psalm 119:114
God 's Word also heals our bodies and minds from the stress of the situations we face.
Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He sent out his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave. (Psalm 107:19-20)
We may have situations from our past, or things we are dealing with now, where our wounds (physical, mental, or emotional) may not have healed yet. However, spending time reading the bible, can help give us the encouragement we need during the process of healing, and on the road to recovery.
#6 - Endurance and Strength During Trials
The bible makes it very clear that we will face hardships in life. Whether persecution for our faith, the normal storms of life, tests directly from God, or consequences of sin - the trials and tribulations will inevitably come.
Jesus said to his disciples:
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)
Just as Jesus gave us the encouragement of knowing that ultimately he has overcome the world, the bible makes it clear, that we have everything we need through his word, to endure trials when they come, and to come out strong in the end:
- It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees. Psalm 119:71
- If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction. Psalm 119:92
- Trouble and distress have come upon me, but your commands give me delight. Psalm 119:143
- My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word. Psalm 119:28
Keep in mind that reading the bible regularly is not only for our benefit in times of trials, but also for the benefit of those around us. God can use us to uplift others who are going through tough times, when we encourage them with God's Word.
Therefore, encourage one another with these words. (2 Thessalonians 4:18)
#7 - Blessings and Success
Now this is the benefit that most Christians want, but without having to do what is required to get it.
There are blessings we get by mere association as believers, simply because we belong to God, and have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior. However, there are additional blessings that we receive when we read and obey God's Word.
- Blessed are they who keep his statutes and seek him with all their heart. Psalm 119:2
- Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it. Luke 11:28
Looking for a breakthrough? Feel like you have hit a plateau in your walk with God? Have some unanswered prayers? Looking for God to move in certain areas of your life? Spend more time reading the bible! Work on those areas where you may not be putting into practice what you've been reading, and then watch God start to bless you on a whole new level!
Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. (Joshua 1:7)
That is what the word of God can do in our lives, if we allow it to.
SIDE NOTE: blessings and success isn't always referring to material possessions.
#8 - Discernment of Truth
This is a very important benefit of reading the bible that most people often overlook.
There are so many religions, doctrines, and false teachings today. Even when you narrow it down to just Christianity, there are many contradictory truths being taught nationwide.
One preacher says this, and another says that. So how do we as individual Christians discern truth from untruth? We will never be able to discern truth without first knowing what the bible (the truth) actually says:
- Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. John 17:17
- If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. John 8:31-32
Reading the bible regularly, arms us with truth. Knowing the truths of God’s Word can set us free from any former false teachings, beliefs, religious notions, or traditions that we have previously had, or may currently be being taught in our local church or assembly.
Paul warned the first century believers in Acts:
I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them. So be on your guard. (Acts 20:29-31)
NOTE: false teachings don’t ALWAYS come from false teachers.
Sometimes true Christians can simply be in error due to a lack of understanding, or knowledge about a particular passage of scripture. This is all the more reason why we should read and learn God’s Word, so that we can tell the difference.
#9 - It Keeps Us From Sin
If you ever thought that by simply becoming a Christian you would automatically stop sinning, you are sadly mistaken. The Bible teaches that the only way to not live in sin, is to spend time regularly reading God's Word.
How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word. (Psalm 119:9)
First and foremost, the bible is what defines sin and helps us to identify it. Even in its most subtle forms. If we don’t know what sin is, how will we know what not to do in our walk with God?
I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. (Psalm 119:11)
The more time we spend reading God's Word, the more of his word we hide in our heart. Then when temptation to sin arises we have more ammunition to help us overcome the temptation.
So if you want to stay away from sin, kick some bad habits, or bad attitudes and emotions that keep flaring up, then spend more time reading and learning the bible and watch God begin to make some changes!
#10 - It Helps Us Fight Spiritual Battles
As Christians, one of the most important things to remember is that there is a spiritual battle going on behind the scenes every single moment of every single day. And, because it is a spiritual battle, we will only be equipped to fight it with spiritual weapons.
Here are two key passages of scripture regarding this:
- Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:10-12, 17
- For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 2 Corinthians 10:3-4
Notice in the Ephesians passage that it refers to the word of God as the sword of the Spirit. If you study the entire passage you will see how the sword is the only offensive weapon in our spiritual armor that we can use to go on the attack.
We aren't fighting against that man, woman, teacher, boss, ex-, or neighbor, that you think is ruining your life. We are fighting against the demonic forces behind their words, thoughts, behavior, and actions.
These are things that we must battle out in the spiritual realm; by speaking God's Word of truth, holding on to our faith, maintaining a godly attitude, and by not reacting in anger or violence, even when the situation tempts us to. The more we read the bible, the more equipped we will be to speak it, and utilize it in spiritual warfare.
One of Satan's greatest weapon's is man's ignorance of God's Word. Let's not allow him to dictate how much of God we need in our lives.
Tap Into the Power of God's Word
These 10 amazing benefits of reading the bible, are an exact demonstration of the power of the Word of God, and the amazing changes it can have in your life if you read it regularly.
Truly enjoying life on a consistent basis, as a Christian, must include a change in our attitude about the bible. Let's not forget, that we have 24/7 access to God's Word. I promise, that when you begin to embrace the bible, and make it a regular priority in your life, that you will begin to tap into the power of God's Word unlike ever before.
Now that you know what happens when you read the bible regularly, are any of the things mentioned missing from your life? Could you use a bit more hope, healing, peace, comfort, wisdom, blessings or success? Are you ready to learn how to obey God, deal with sin, grow spiritually, endure trials, discern truth, and fight spiritual battles?
If you could start to significantly improve and enjoy your life more today, simply by spending more time reading the bible, how soon would you get started?
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