A few years ago, from time to time a fellow would say to me, “If you don’t read the Bible, then I think you’re probably not saved”. There were a number of years that I didn’t read and study God’s word. Was I not saved? According to him, probably not. I guess the thief on the cross wasn’t saved either. This is just one of many things that people judge about others to determine if they are ‘truly’ saved.
For sure I would agree that Christians should read the Bible. It’s how we hear from God. People want to know God’s will. Read, listen, and study the Bible and you will easily discover it. However, I have a hard time finding a verse that says there something you must do to be saved from the penalty of sin other than believing the gospel.
The Bible reveals the way of salvation
The Bible is the only document that reveals God’s plan of salvation from the penalty of sin (eternal death) by faith in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. In a round-about way, every person is saved by hearing and responding to the word of God by faith. Many, I would say, are saved when the Holy Spirit uses someone to share the Biblical gospel with them; a preacher, a Sunday School teacher, a friend, or a street evangelist, or a combination of voices (Acts 2:41; 16:31). However, not everyone is saved by directly reading the Bible.
The Bible is food for the believer
But the Bible is valuable food for a believer to grow spiritually; to deepen their relationship with the Lord. It’s certainly something that we should do daily; not for an academic pursuit but out of a desire to know Him (Phil. 3:10). Psalm 119 teaches us the virtues of knowing God through His word. Following are nine truths from the Psalm:
Nine Truths from Psalm 119
|V. 2 – Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, who seek Him with the whole heart!|
|V. 9 – How can a young man cleanse his ways? By taking heed according to Your word.|
|V. 11 – Your word I have hidden in my heart that I might not sin against You.|
|V. 24 – Your testimonies also are my delight and my counselors.|
|V. 50 – This is my comfort in my affliction, for Your word has given me life.|
|V. 105 – Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.|
|V. 130 – The entirety of Your Word is truth. And every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever.|
|V. 162 – I rejoice at Your word as one who finds great treasure.|
|V. 165 – Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble.|
The Bible is an essential tool in living the Christian life. The Spirit of God is the agent and the Word of God is the instrument that He uses to develop us into mature believers (II Tim. 3:16). If we are not in the word, learning how to deepen our relationship with the Lord, our life will fail to glorify Him. It will also be detrimental to the way we live and our future in the kingdom of God.
“Now godliness with contentment is great gain.” I Timothy 6:6
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