For those of you who have read any of my previous posts or follow my blog, you already know that I always circle back to the benefits and importance of the Word of God as my point of reference.
I love God and I love His Word! But, unfortunately, we live in a world today where there is little to no interest in reading or learning the bible.
The bible is depicted as being outdated, fictional, having little value, and to some, completely irrelevant. The sad part, is that those of us who profess to be Christians are adapting to that same line of thinking, without even realizing it.
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The bible is the written word of God. Our true mirror and guidebook to life. Without looking into it regularly, we will miss out on what the word of God can do in our lives.
So many of us literally just want to accept Jesus and reap all the benefits of a relationship with Him, without ever having to really get to know Him. What we fail to realize, is that we can't truly get to know Him, reap any true benefits of knowing Him, or experience the power of the Word of God, apart from reading the bible.
Sadly, we as Christians, often allow the devil and the society in which we live, dictate how much of God we need in our lives. #timewithGod #importanceofGodsWord #GodsWord
I created an online course called Learning the Bible 101: Benefits, Methods & Hindrances. It teaches what the bible is and how you can have a ton of fun learning it in the process! In this post, I'm taking an excerpt from that course to look at the first five of ten key benefits of reading the bible.
Let's dive into the true importance of the word of God, how the bible helps us, and key uses of the bible in our very lives.
#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.
John 14:15 (NIV) says: "if you love me, keep my commands".
I love this verse because its so simple and plain. We profess to love God, but Jesus clearly told his disciples in this verse that if we love Him we will keep his commands or obey his word.
But how can we keep his commands if we don’t even know what they are?
In the verse above, the bible clearly states that we need God's Word to learn how to live for God in the first place. It is the ONLY way we will be thoroughly equipped to live for Him and do His work.
So how does the bible help us? It shows us how to obey and live for God.
Once you start reading the bible regularly and learning to obey and live for God, as a result you also start to grow spiritually.
Matthew 4:4 (NIV) says: "Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God".
In other words, as a Christian we don’t only live on physical food to nourish our bodies. But, we should also live on the Word of God for spiritual nourishment.
I Peter 2:2-3 (NIV) says: "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".
A great analogy is used here. Just like babies need and crave milk to grow, so we as Christians should crave His Word (our spiritual milk) so that we can grow in our walk with God. After all, the bible also says:
That’s the beauty of God’s word. Spiritually it will always satisfy us. It won’t even matter if you overeat! 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 we know you become malnourished and can even die. In the same way, if we stop eating spiritually, we starve our spirit. Then our Christian 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 important the word of God is in our lives.
#3 - Wisdom and guidance for life
What else does the word of God do in our lives? It provides wisdom and guidance for life!
Psalm 119:105 is a popular verse. However, it has become more of a cliché than an actual truth to live by:
After all, if the Bible is the source of wisdom and guidance, then why wouldn’t we want to make decisions in life based on that very wisdom and guidance, especially if it comes from God?
This is one of the many uses of the bible that we forego, when we decide not to read it.
#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, even the pleasures of this life such as alcohol, smoking, and other “substances” pale in comparison as they all ONLY provide temporary relief on a physical scale. But, none of that helps on a spiritual scale. Which is why, when sobriety hits or the high fades, we still feel empty.
Let’s look at a few key verses.
Psalms 119:50 (NIV): "My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life.”
Sometimes, the promises of God’s word may be the ONLY thing that can provide comfort when you’re going through things.
Psalms 119:165 (NIV): "Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble."
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’ve all had times when we were hurt, or even grieving. Where we’ve been surrounded by family and friends, but no one could say the right thing to encourage us. But the Word of God provides encouragement no matter what the situation may be.
Psalms 119:28 (NIV): “I weep with grief; my heart is heavy with sorrow; encourage and cheer me with your words.”
Just as the writer did here, we can literally cry out to God and ask him to encourage and cheer us up with His Word!
And then there is one of my favorite verses:
No explanation needed! You want more peace in your life? Yoga may help relax your body and mind temporarily. However, continuously reading God’s Word will keep you in state of “perfect” peace!
Why? Because reading the bible and learning about God's promises, builds your faith and trust in God. And if you fully trust in God, no matter what life throws your way, you will have a peace that helps you endure anything because you will know that He is always with you.
That is the power of the word of God. The importance of 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, new car, or new home, getting over a relationship or just waiting on God to answer a prayer in general.
Its in these times of waiting where we really have to place our trust in God and the fact that He knows what is best for us. He will therefore, answer our prayers or change our various situations at just the right time, in accordance to His will for our lives.
His Word gives us this necessary hope when we start to doubt or even lose faith.
Psalms 130:5 (NIV): “I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.”
Psalms 119:43 (NIV): “Do not snatch the word of truth from my mouth, for I have put my hope in your laws.”
In times when we start to feel “hopeless”, the best thing to do, is go immediately to His Word for hope.
Psalms 119:47 (NIV): “I rise before dawn and cry for help; I have put my hope in your word.”
Psalms 119:114 (NIV) summarizes it for us in a nutshell:
“You are my refuge and my shield; your Word is my source of hope.”
The bible also provides healing in the sense that God 's Word heals our souls and minds from the stress of the situations we face, as well as physical healing.
Psalms 107:19-20 (NIV): “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.”
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.
Again, this shows the importance of the word of God. The bible really is our true source of hope and healing.
The Power of the Word of God
Hebrews 4:12 is one of many verses that tells us about how powerful God’s Word can be and what the word of God can do in our lives:
I have sat through many amazing motivational speeches in my day and read some very inspirational books by some very successful leaders. However, no book has ever changed my life the way the bible has. No book has the authority or power to dig into the depths of our soul and spirit and convict Christians towards life-altering changes the way the bible does!
These benefits that we get from reading the bible are an exact demonstration of God's power and the importance of the Word of God in our lives!
Be sure to check out Part 2, where we'll look at the other 5 key benefits of reading the bible.
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