The Bible is not just another book of rules and regulations for how a Christian should live. Instead, it is the living Word of God. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power…”
God’s Word is alive and powerful, and inside, there are answers to any situation you could ever face in life. Therefore, if you want to grow strong spiritually, then you need to develop the habit of studying your Bible on a daily basis, and letting it dwell in you richly (Col. 3:16).
Matthew 6:33 says, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” One of the most important ways to seek first the kingdom of God, is to give the Word of God first place in your life.
I. How do you give God’s Word first place?
- Commit to a regular time of reading the Bible each and every day – even if it’s only a few verses or one chapter at first. Then, once you develop the habit, you can gradually increase how much you read each day.
- It’s important to read both the Old and New Testaments, but since the New Testament was written to the Church (Christians), you should focus most of your time there.
The New Testament is made up of:
- The Gospels – (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John) These are records of the life and ministry of Jesus.
- The Epistles – (Acts through Revelation) Epistles are “letters” written to the Christian Church teaching and instructing us in how we should live.
II. How to Study the Bible
- The King James Version is an excellent version, however, it was translated in the 17th century, and therefore, it was written in Elizabethan English. Since it can sometimes be difficult to understand, it is very important that you find a version of the Bible that you can understand. NIV, NKJ, NLT, Amplified, The Message, etc., are all good translations. (NOTE: Free Bible apps are available for smartphones and tablets. I recommend YouVersion, which has numerous Bible translations available at the touch of a finger!)
- It’s also important that you feel free to write in your Bible. You can underline or highlight scriptures that have special meaning to you. This will help personalize the Word for you. Marking these scriptures will also help you find them more readily when you need them.
- When you sit down to read the Bible, ask the Holy Spirit to teach you and help you understand it as you read. (John 14:26, Psalms 119:18)
- When you read, think about each word in each scripture. You can check meanings, too, by using a concordance to study the Greek or Hebrew root words and their meanings. If you don’t have a concordance, a dictionary will help you. (2 Tim. 2:15)
- Carefully consider how the Word applies to you personally and to the situations you are facing. (2 Tim. 3:16, Ps. 119:105, 111)
- Compile a “Scripture Notebook” with different topics, such as faith, love, peace, healing, provision, etc., and every time you find a scripture on a certain subject, record it in its appropriate place. (2 Tim.3:15)
- Speak the Word of God over every area of your life — health, mind, problems, money, family, relationships, business, future, etc. (Mt. 8:8)
- Think about God’s Word and speak it to yourself continually. This is called “meditating on the Word.” (Josh. 1:8, Ps. 119:97)
- Accept God’s Word as the final authority. (Ps. 119:89)
Remember, the Bible is a personal message from Almighty God Himself to you! While the Bible is God’s inspired Word, it was also meant to be down-to-earth. Don’t just reverently give it a place of honor on your coffee table or bookshelf, but treat the Word as your personal hands-on reference book on life — a “how-to” book for everyday living!
This post is excerpted from my book, A Life That Flourishes. Click on image below to purchase.
Alisha Gratehouse is a minister’s wife, the mother of three awesome kids, and a mixed-media artist. Her days are filled with writing, creating, homeschooling, drinking tea, and encouraging others to live abundant and satisfying lives (John 10:10). She believes that everyone has a God-given purpose to fulfill, and that in order to fulfill that purpose, they must follow the passions and desires the Lord has placed in their hearts. Alisha is the author of several books including, A Life That Flourishes.