Every Christian must know that God has a plan for their life. Over the past number of weeks we have been focusing on discipleship. More specifically we have: 1) examined ourselves to see if we are disciples of Jesus, 2) learned how to share our story (testimony), 3) learned who to tell our story, and 4) learned how we should respond to their response to the gospel. Over the next month we shall learn how to help a new Christian develop new habits that will help them grow in spiritual maturity. In this sermon, we shall discuss the first new habit: Regular Bible reading.
A Holy Habit
Why should you read the Bible? The answer is clear: because it is God’s holy revelation to us. It is divinely inspired, divine instruction and it is true and trustworthy.
Divinely Inspired. One of the most used objections to the Bible is that it cannot be the “Word of God” because it was written by men. The Christian responds by saying: “While it is true that men wrote the Bible, they only wrote what God led them to write.” While men wrote the Bible, no man can claim to be its author. The Bible has God for its author. 2 Timothy 3:16 says the Bible is “God breathed”. Consider that the Baptist Faith and Message (BFM) (our confession of faith) describes this truth in this way:
The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God’s revelation of Himself to man…It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter.
Divine Instruction. Not only is the Bible divinely inspired it is divine instruction. The BFM says, “It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction.” Where do we turn to learn what is right and wrong? To where do we go to discover what God has said we should do and not do? The BFM says the Bible is “the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried.” We do not base our values on what we think or what the culture tells us, rather we turn to the Bible because it is the only book that is authoritatively from God.
True and Trustworthy. Not only is the Bible divinely inspired divine instruction, it is true and trustworthy. Our BFM clearly states: “All Scripture is totally true and trustworthy.” The Chicago Statement of Biblical Inerrancy says, “Being wholly and verbally God-given, Scripture is without error or fault in all its teaching, no less in what it states about God’s acts in creation, about the events of world history, and about its own literary origins under God, than in its witness to God’s saving grace in individual lives.”
A Healthy Habit
Reading the Bible is not only a good habit to have, it is also good for you. Consider that it is good for your head, heart, hands, and home.
Good for Your Head. The Bible tells us to “take every thought captive to obey Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5). If you turn on Fox News, CNN or go to the Drudge Report, you will quickly see that wickedness and sin is everywhere. Woe to the person who watches the nightly news and then goes to bed! The Bible is good for your head and protects your thoughts. The Bible keeps anxiety away (Phil 4). When you read the Bible you are reminded by God that He is in control, He is actively working, and He will bring the world to its appropriate end.
Good for Your Heart. The Bible says, “A joyful heart is good medicine but a crushed spirit dries up the bones” (Prov 17:22). This world with its sin and evil will dry you up, only by coming to the Bible and being reminded of God’s holiness, love, and goodness can we find the “good medicine” to bring us joy to our hearts. Only the Bible can truly guide your heart to good and proper things while keeping a proper perspective. The Bible is good for your heart.
Good for Your Hands. Many people want to do something good with their lives. However, many times we are unsure what to do. The Bible is good for your hands because it reminds you that your hands belong to God and should be employed for His glory. We are a “living sacrifice” (Rom 12:1) to God and we are to remember “you are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body” (1 Cor. 6:19-20). The Bible tells you to put your hands to work for the glory of God and for the good of others.
Good for Your Home. The Bible is good for your home. The family that has Jesus as its foundation is a family that will last. When the rain comes and the winds blow, the firm foundation of Jesus will make sure that the house will not fall. If you try to build your family on any other foundation the house will fall and great will be its fall (Matt 7:24-27).