There is a novel thought I have about being a Christian. This thought is extremely applicable to those Christians who sense a calling of ministry on their lives. Its especially applicable to those who are already in ministry and to those men who have risen to the task of standing behind the pulpit. My thought isn’t the most complex of ideas, nor is it all too controversial. It isn’t even an original thought to me. But I do believe that it has gone long to the wayside of many Christians and sorrowfully so to many students of and ministers of the gospel. Would you like to know this idea I find to be so novel? Simply my idea is this: read the Bible.
Read the Bible. Yes, I’m giving an imperative. I must confess I am a student at a ‘Bible Institute’ and it brings me much sorrow and feelings of sickness to hear the number of guys I go to school with who have entered the pulpit, and those who are in these classes to give them a better understanding of God’s word and hear how many of them say, “I’ve never read that before.” I’ve been pounded about my theology from students here and ministers of the gospel elsewhere who confess they’ve never spent the time reading the entirety of the canon of Scripture.
As an Evangelical who affirms the inerrancy and infallibility of the Scriptures I believe with all that I am that God Almighty, the one who created all things, sustains all things, and will restore all things one day speaks through the Bible. If God is speaking, and I believe in God, why wouldn’t I devote time to studying what he has said, and is saying? The Lord has been gracious to me in giving me the self-control to stop from yelling at people, “Don’t critique my Calvinism when you’ve never even read the Bible!” I hear so many guys who think they’re experts on the things of God when they’ve never even begun to open up his word and search the Scriptures to see if what they proclaim are true.
Just read the Bible. You cannot present yourself as a worker who has no need to be ashamed before God, ready to rightly divide the word of truth if you’ve never read the word of truth. For the glory of the God you want to proclaim, read his word. Just pick it up and read it! It is alive! You have no idea how short you are selling yourself as one who believes in the Bible when you don’t read it. Preachers, do you want to be a better preacher of the word of God? Then read it. Christian do you want to know God’s will for your life? Then read it in the Scriptures. He says it is all inspired an useful for many things, not the least of which is that you can be competent to be equipped for every good work.
I suppose my novel idea isn’t so novel. But, it would be rather encouraging to see people who believe the Bible to be the word of God, actually reading the word of God. Oh how sweet it would be to see preachers who preach the word of God actually spending time in the word of God. How lovely are the words of Scripture, sweeter are they than honey. More precious they are than gold. Yet, we disregard the Holy Writ as though it weren’t holy at all. Beloved, attempt it if but for a short time, and see if you’re not met face to face with the Creator of all things and the Savior of those who believe.