This Sunday we continue our summer sermon series called Spiritual Exercises. Last week we looked at How to Pray. This week we are focusing on How to Read the Bible.
But the Bible can be very intimidating. It is huge. When we talk about reading a novel, we think in terms of weeks. Days, if you are a fast reader. Hours, if it is a real page-turner. But when it comes to the Bible, we often think in terms of a year. How many of you have endeavored to read the whole Bible in a year? There are multitudes of reading plans to help guide you.
Life often gets in the way, we fall behind, and before you know it, we have given up reading the Bible in a year.
What we often try instead of reading the Bible in a year is a daily devotional reading. Often that kind of Bible reading is one chapter per day. When we do this, we’re not necessarily interested in reading the whole Bible consecutively. We just want to read a bit on a regular basis so that we can have consistent spiritual input in our lives. In other words, we want to hear from God. Even the chapter per day approach has its difficulties.
There are parts of the Bible that are boring.
There are parts of the Bible that are really hard to understand.
There are stories that speak of people and places that we don’t know how to pronounce, and we have no idea who or where they are.
What do we do with all of this?
Sadly, we tend to leave our Bible on the shelf, on the nightstand, or as an unused app, maybe uninstalled.
Why? There is no doubt, the Bible is intimidating. It is a book with 66 books inside it, the most recent of which was written about 1900 years ago by people who spoke dead languages and lived in cultures extremely different from our own.
All that taken into consideration, I’m convinced that the Bible is accessible. I admit that reading the Bible must be very different from reading a novel or the news. So tomorrow at Faith Church, we’ll talk about some tools and attitudes that are vital to help you read the Bible.