A Wonderful Book That Is So Much More
The Bible is the world’s most enduring classic. It addresses universal concerns of man, influences people’s views on life matters, influences other literary works, and is reviewed by experts trying to mine the thoughts behind the book. I recently read an article on what makes a book a classic and I found myself seeing how the Bible met all 14 criteria listed. Even though many people disparage the Bible, no one can deny it has been the most influential book in world history. This alone warrants studying it.
By studying the Bible we can learn the history of God’s people from Adam to the Apostles. As a tool to learn the best practices for a good life, the Bible is extensive and much of what is recorded has been incorporated into our legal systems. The Bible has shaped the practices of two major religions, Judaism and Christianity. There is no denying that it has been influential in so many areas.
For the Christian, we turn to the Bible to learn about God’s character and about Christian living. Yet it is dangerous for the Christian to see it as only a book that is either a biography about God and his people OR to treat it as a “how to manual” for life.
Without the enlightenment from the Holy Spirit, the Bible truly cannot be known as anything more than a book. We can see this in how very knowledgeable men and women in our universities walk away from their studies of the Bible with a view of God as capricious, the “watch maker is in the sky,” or any number of inaccurate reflections of our faith. But the Bible is more than just a book. The Bible is God revealing himself and his plans to bring fallen man back into communion with him. He now uses the printed word, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit to speak to us as the prophets of old did. When the Holy Spirit leads us into all truth (John 16:13), we see the Bible for what it truly is, the living and active word by which God shows us himself (Hebrews 4:12).
As in all relationships, we can sometimes come to our time with God with a focus more on what I think or want than with a desire to understand him. And, as is true in human relationships, this approach can sometimes result in us missing why God shared with us what he shared. And this can result in wrong understandings or misrepresentations.
How we approach the Word of God and seek to understand what he has revealed to us is critical to being able to rightly handle the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15). “First Principles,” our new women’s study that begins this Monday evening, is an adaptation of material found through Simeon Trustand the book Expository Preachingby David Helm. This study will help us to approach the text with a God-centered focus. Through it, we will look at ways we tend to approach the Word, how to better approach the Word, and work through tools to better understand what the Word through the Holy Spirit is telling us. It will be an enriching time of working together to better understand how to know God and his unfolding plan of redemption. As we come to see that God is speaking to us today through the Bible and enlightenment by the Holy Spirit, this study should help us gain a richness in our relationship with God.
We encourage any woman who is interested in having a richer time in the Word to join us Monday nights this summer, beginning June 11.
Starting on June 11
Monday Evenings, 7:00-8:30pm
Occoquan Bible Church
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