When we study scripture, we should always ask, “What is this passage revealing to me about God?” The Bible is God’s Word to us. It is His revelation of Himself. If you want to know God, study scripture. If you want to hear the Lord speak, read what He is saying in His Word. God reveals all we need to know about Him within the pages of His Word.
The Bible is a sacred book, a book to be cherished above everything else in our lives. Jesus is the Word of God in the flesh (John 1:1-4; John 1:14). He is the bread of life. If we want to live fully, then we must consume His bread (John 6:35; John 6:48-55). We must delight in His Word. We study scripture to know God and to learn how to live our lives as He intends us to live them.
It is a never-ending frustration for me to attend Bible studies where, after reading a passage of scripture, the leader inevitably asks, “What do those verses mean to you?” We don’t read the Bible to see how it applies to our lives. That’s the wrong attitude and approach. We study scripture to learn about God, not about ourselves. The book is about Him, not us! Every page of the Bible is about God, and not a single word is about you or me. Jesus said if we will seek Him, we will find Him (Matthew 7:7-8). That is how we are to approach the Bible. As you read, seek Him, and if you do, you will find Him there.
The Word of God is a handbook for life only as far as it teaches us who God is and we respond accordingly. There is good advice within the pages of the Bible, but it is there because any and everything good and true is part of God’s nature. Our King warns against folly because there is no folly in Him. He demands holiness because He is holy. Everything we can learn about life from the Bible is there because God is truth, wisdom, love, and righteousness. We want these things in our life because we want to live a life that will make us as much like God as possible. We want to be like Jesus.
Don’t study scripture attempting to discover how to be more successful in life or to gain some advantage over others. Study scripture to learn about God and develop an ever-increasing love for Him. The more we understand the character of God and what the truth of His holiness demands of us, the more our lives will reflect His nature. The more we come to know about Him, the more we will want of Him.
As we read God’s Word, we should look for what each passage is revealing about Christ. Feast on His love, mercy, strength, and unwavering holiness. Don’t approach the Bible as a book of stories or wise sayings. While it does contain many marvelous stories and an unending flow of wisdom, they are all there to teach us something about our incredible and incomparable God. Never read God’s Word without a sense of awe, trembling, and expectation. He is holy and His Word is holy. Taste the goodness and majesty of God, ingest His nature, and walk according to His ways.