I remember a little ditty I learnt as a youngster, to the tune of London’s Burning:
Read your Bible, read your Bible
read it daily, read it daily.
It’s a lamp; it’s a lamp,
and a light to your pathway.
The words are simple but they are so true. It’s based on Psalm 119:105, which says quite simply:
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”
One of the most touted (and rightly so!) verses about the Bible, 2 Timothy 3:16 says:
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
The Bible is so vital in everybody’s life. Without it, we can’t grow, we can’t serve God properly. There’s so much we can learn from God’s word, rich doctrine, practical helps; it’s everything we need for life – our ‘guidebook’ if you like. It shouldn’t sit on our shelf collecting dust. It’s our Sword of the Spirit, our weapon. We must never be unarmed. It’s how we stay alive, how we tackle the trials and tribulations that come our way. It’s our most valuable possession.
What do you reach for in the morning when you wake-up? Is it your Bible or your phone? We need to ensure we have our priorities are right, even if we have a busy day ahead of us. Devotional times set us up for the day. Martin Luther had a lot to do one day, his attitude was, “I’ve so much work today, I shall need at least three hours alone with the Lord!”
Just reading a daily devotional is not enough, we need to pray and dive head-first straight into God’s word. There is so much in scripture about the importance of growing as believers by reading and meditating on God’s word. How much does the Bible mean to us? Have a look at these Chinese believers receiving Bibles for the first time:
Contrast that with our reaction upon opening our Bibles…
The Importance of Routine
Ever since I became a Christian, as a young lad, something I’ve endeavoured to stick to, every morning, is to have a regular time with the Lord. I’ve found it an immense blessing, although I’ve failed miserably many times. Last year, due to changing circumstances, I fell out of my pattern. The devil had a field day. Once you lose it, it’s incredibly difficult to get back. They were a torrid few months and I’m still struggling to find that quality time to be alone with the Lord and His Word.
Some people dislike routines as it can become just a routine; but it is so important to read your Bible every day. I accept that for many people routines are not possible and they find better and even more regular times with the Lord ad hoc. A routine is better than not reading the Bible at all. However, we should aim far higher…
The Importance of Meditation
The Psalms, in hundreds of places talk about meditating at all hours of the day and night on God’s word.
“In the night I remember your name. At midnight I rise to give you thanks. I rise before dawn and cry for help. My eyes stay open through the watches of the night that I may meditate on your promises. My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning. I will not enter my house or go to my bed, I will allow no sleep to my eyes, no slumber to my eyelids, till I find a place for the Lord, a dwelling for the Mighty One of Jacob. All night long I flood my bed with weeping, drenching my couch with tears. In the morning, as well, I lay my requests before you, waiting in expectation. Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord who minister by night in the house of the Lord.” (Numerous places).
This total devotion to God is definitely lacking in many Christians. Christ isn’t where he should be in our lives. It’s one thing to just read a portion of scripture — it’s another to take it in, to study, understand, meditate and carry into our day those words. Out of every part we read, we should look at what it tells us about Christ. Then we should be stirred to pray. We should strive for a deeper understanding and experience of God. There’s so much more we’re missing out on.
Paul’s prayer sums it all up:
“… that you, being rooted and established in love, may have the power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that You may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”
What we then learn should stir us to worship and glorify our Maker. Paul then goes onto pray:
“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”
That’s our ultimate aim, to glorify Christ. A quote I came across recently puts it like this:
“Theology that does not lead to worship barely deserves the name.”
Every day we should be blown away by God’s mercies, His sheer awesomeness and power. Everything, our all, heart, mind, soul and strength should be geared towards praising our God.
The importance of reading and meditating on your Bible every day cannot be under-estimated. It should be part and parcel of every Christian’s life, alongside prayer, worship and regular fellowship with other believers. Bible reading plans can be a help; and I would recommend Robert Murray McCheyne’s plan, which takes you through the whole Bible in a year and the New Testament and Psalms twice.
So with that, go, read and be blessed and be sure to keep your Sword handy!