We have been slowly working our way through John chapter 1, using a modified inductive study method. We focus on asking lots of questions and reviewing the information a LOT! In the short time we have been working through John, we have learned much of the content. For more information and to discover how we walked through the first part of John, check out the previous post in this series.
The sheer size of the Bible can be overwhelming when you approach it to study it. Where do you start? How can you possibly know all of the information inside? How can you begin to understand what men and women of God have pondered and debated for centuries?
And the answer could be discouraging:
You, in your own strength and with the power of your own brain, cannot understand this book. It is too much for you.
Before you click away and go off discouraged from studying the Bible altogether, let me assure you:
there is still hope for you.
There is a way you CAN understand the Scripture. But it is outside of you. Understanding comes only from one source – God! The most exciting part of the study of God’s Word is that He (the author of the book) comes alongside you and becomes your teacher!
Today I have some simple things to say about God, the Teacher of the Word. I hope you will find encouragement to continue the habit of studying the Word of God.
We have discussed in specific detail the creation of a plan for Bible study, but we still haven’t talked about what you should study. Where to begin with this big book, the Bible? Over the next couple of posts I will share with you some simple ideas for getting into the Word as you begin the habit of devoted daily Bible study.
First (I feel like there is always a “but first”), I have a word for you regarding the choosing of Bible studies. The simple way I sift through the thousands of Bible studies out there and get to what I believe is the heart of Bible study: sitting at Jesus’s feet and being taught by Him.
We have been working our way through a series called, You DO have Time for Bible Study in the past few weeks. And I am almost ready to talk about the real deal stuff of doing Bible study. These past few posts have dealt with the logistics for starting a lifelong Bible study habit. And I have a post for you next week with a simple way to choose a worthy Bible study, but I feel a pressing on my heart to talk about today’s topic.
Last week I told you about picking a time for Bible study and praying for God’s protection of that time. I told you God will do tiny miracles in your life so you can sit at His feet and learn from His Word. And I know this to be true from experience. But today I want to talk about the language associated with a Christian’s time. I want to examine our language and decide if it can pass the very first test of Philippians 4:8: “whatever is true.”
Full disclosure here: I have a pet peeve.
There is a great misconception about Bible study that keeps women from getting involved in it at the “difficult seasons of life.” The misconception is there is a specific godly time for Bible study. And if it is not done during that time, it is not worthy of even attempting. The misunderstanding comes from the countless people of God who speak of their morning quiet times with God. They usually point to that as a habit they just cannot do life without.
We look at those we consider godly and are tempted to follow them, to create their habits as our standards. But what is interesting is our focus is all wrong. We look at the time of day, when we should be looking at the habit they have created – daily devotion to God and His Word.
When the standard shifts away from God’s Word and onto another person (or a time of day), we have a hard time keeping up. What if my life doesn’t look exactly like the godly lady next door? And what if I am not a morning person? What does that say about me?
Here’s a word of encouragement for you, O despiser-of-the-morning:
There is no absolute best time to spend time with the Lord.
There is not one time of day which is holier than another.
What is important in creating the lifelong habit of daily devotion to God’s Word is setting aside a time each day to do it. Making the Word the priority, not the time.
We have been walking through a series called You DO have time for Bible Study. If you are just joining with this post, I encourage you to check out the previous three. Go, ahead. This article will still be here when you get back. We have been talking about the fact that you DO have time for Bible study, the priority of Bible study and the place where your Bible study will happen. Today, we are going to talk about choosing a time for Bible study.
I feel as though I stand on a precipice and I am about to jump into a very deep pool. It is foggy, murky, and definitely unknown. I feel myself stretching out, feeling for something to grasp onto before I jump into the water. I create a plan for jumping in, gather up my courage, and then second-guess myself, and run away from the edge.
Practically, in my head, I know others have done this before. I can see plenty of others in the distant water, splashing and having fun – thriving in this foreign environment. I see they somehow jumped from the place where I now sit perched and survived the fall and the crash into the water. And yet…
I still haven’t jumped in.
This is how I feel as my oldest starts school later this month.
You see, she is not just starting school.
I, too, am starting school.