[tweetthis]How precious is the Word of God![/tweetthis]
I love it when the Holy Spirit puts something on my heart, and then that “something” seems to pop up everywhere: private thoughts, conversations, song lyrics, personal devotions, on the radio, and in the Sunday morning sermon!
It happened recently as God spoke to me through a ministry leader, a soul friend, a still small voice in a time of silence, a YouTube video, and one of my pastors. The message, you might ask?
“We live in a time when there are more Bibles available than ever before. We live in a time when there are more translations of the Bible available than ever before. We live in a time when there are more resources for studying the Bible available than ever before. Yet, we live in a time when Bible illiteracy is at an all-time high!”
As you might imagine, I’ve been wondering lately, “Why is this?”
Have we allowed ourselves to become too busy? Too complacent? Has our increased technology made it too easy?
It is true, many of us around the globe have more access to the Bible than ever before. And, I believe, many people are taking advantage of this benefit: listening to the Bible on audio, reading it on their devices, and attending church to hear a sermon.
However, I am not sure many go beyond the hearing of the Word or giving it a quick, passing read.
I think this is where we are coming up short. The benefits, the life-transforming power of God’s Holy Word comes in spending time in it – in digging deep and engaging with it!
What is it we are missing out on in our “hurry, hurry, give-It-a-quick-read/listen” culture?
Psalm 119 reveals some of the blessings that Scripture brings to us. God’s Word:
- Nourishes the soul (Psalm 119:25).
- Convicts (Psalm 119:29).
- Redirects our wayward gaze (Psalm 119:37).
- Fills us with hope (Psalm 119:49).
- Comforts (Psalm 119:50).
- Prompts our praise (Psalm 119:62).
- Reassures (Psalm 119:75).
- Fosters love (Psalm 119:97).
- Leads to wisdom (Psalm 119:100).
- Feeds the hungry soul (Psalm 119:103).
- Strengthens the weary (Psalm 119:107).
- Guards and protects (Psalm 119:115).
- Assures us of our inheritance (Psalm 119:123).
- Lifts the discouraged (Psalm 119:147).
- Offers peace (Psalm 119:165).
These are all good things: reading our Bible, listening to it on audio, listening to podcasts, and hearing our pastor expound the Word in a Sunday sermon.
But we MUST stop believing the lie that says this exposure to the Bible is enough.
[tweetthis]We must become intimate with God’s Word.[/tweetthis]
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword,
piercing to the division of soul and of spirit,
of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly…
What will this intimacy require? It will require intentionality on our part. Block out time in your schedule. Set up a dedicated space. Gather the necessary materials. And DIG in!
Here are just a few methods for Digging into Scripture:
- The S.O.A.P. Method
- Verse Mapping
- Color Coding
- Praying the Scripture in Color
- lectio divina
- Praying the Scripture
- Meditating on the Scripture
- Topical Scripture Journals
- Illustrated Bible Journaling
- Digging Deeper
- The Inductive Bible Study Method
- The Book Study Method
- The Biographical Bible Study Method
If you are ready to go deeper, to become more intimate with the Word of God but just aren’t sure where to begin, you might start by choosing one or two of the above methods and “googling” them in order to learn more. You might “click the links” or search previous blog posts to learn more about some of these methods.
Another option might be signing up for the Digging Deeper: Engaging with the Word of God Course. This course explores all of the methods above and more. It is currently available as a self-study course where you can access the lessons or download them and work through them at your own pace. It is also available as a seven-week online course taking place on Facebook. The Facebook course begins Wednesday, May 11th, and new members can join through the following Wednesday, May 18th. For more information on either the self-study or online course option click here.
Currently, the Self-Study Option (a $50.00 value) can be purchased for $20.00 with discount code: NEWS20. This offer is good through May 31, 2016. Simply go to the Digging Deeper Purchase Page and enter the discount code: NEWS20 under the self-study option.
Through May 18, 2016, the Online Facebook Course Option (a $60.00 value) can be purchased for $30.00. This purchase is processed through Paypal.me. Simply scroll down to the Online Course Option, click on the Buy Now link and enter the amount $30.00 on the Paypal.me page. [Then just to be sure, email me –firstname.lastname@example.org – your Facebook name so that I can add you to the group.]
Please feel free to share the offer with others. Let’s break the cycle of Bible illiteracy.