You can understand the Bible

images3UPZQPSWWhen I hear it–which is often–it goes something like this:

“I KNOW the Bible. I can’t quote it. I don’t know it chapter and verse. And I’m fuzzy on the details. But I KNOW my Bible.”


Who are you trying to convince?

A lot of you think you know the Bible because you know that God loves you.

Or because your grandmother wrote in her Bible a lot.

Or because your grandfather was a minister. Or because you went to Vacation Bible School as a child.

Maybe you think you know your Bible because you attend church most Sundays.

But do you know the difference between the book of Isaiah and the book of Malachi? Can you share the Gospel using 4-5 Bible verses? Do you know the message of Romans? Can you tell the story of Zechariah or Zacchaeus (he was the short one, right?)?

Can you quickly open your Bible to the book of Hezekiah? Try it. I bet you can’t.

Have I provoked you to anger yet? Do you know where that verse is in the Bible?

I once attended a live lecture by Os Guinness. He said that sometimes when people say, “I’ve read that book,” what they really mean is, “I heard the title once.”

I’ve heard people who merely spoke with Josh McDowell on an elevator claim to be good friends with him.

Summary: Our pride interferes with our Bible study.

Conclusion: Humility is one of the most important qualities if you want to learn the Bible.

Those who know me have rarely accused me of humility. But when it comes to Bible study, I start from a lowly position; I have a long way to grow.

I’m convinced there’s more ahead of me to learn from the Bible than behind me. And I’m eager to see what that is!

Here’s a huge secret:

Understanding the Bible begins by realizing that it had an original audience before you.

Don’t pick up your Bible and scan it, looking for the magic verse that will help you make it through your busy day. That’s a guaranteed way to misunderstand your Bible.

Instead, realize that each book of the Bible was written for a particular reason to a defined audience. It was written in a non-Anglo language by someone who lived in a culture different than ours.

In other words, try to understand what it meant, before you try to understand what it means.

According to Oletta Wald, “There is no greater fear in the life of a Christian than having his ignorance of the Bible exposed before others.”

Is that you? Then let that motivate you to study it!

You can understand the Bible.

I know you can.


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