Nov 16, 2007

Studying the Bible - How to? Part 2

Here's another way that I've studied the Bible on a daily basis that I've found to be useful.

God created us with a mind, heart, and body. And because God created us with a mind, heart, and body, whenever we read His word, it will impact our minds, our hearts, and our bodies.

Here's how.

As I am reading through the daily reading for the day, I ask the following three questions and I journal them by labeling them as 1, 2, and 3.

In section 1, as I am reading through the daily reading, I am asking the question, "What new thing about who God is, who I am, and/or my life is God revealing to me through the scripture?"

In section 2, I am asking the question, "How does that new understanding impact my heart?"

In section 3, I am asking the question, "What is God asking me to do based on what He's revealed to me?"

So if I am reading about how awesome God is in His faithfulness toward us, I might say something like:

1) God is always there for me when I turn to Him for guidance and strength. There is never a time where God will say no to me when I turn to Him for guidance and strength.

2) This gives me the courage and the assurance that God is always for me. That no matter what I may be going through today, because God is with me I will alright.

3) Because God is always with me and for me, I ought to also be willing to forgive and give other people the same chance that God gives me. I ought to also be for people just as God is for me.

During the application section, if that's all you write, the devil loves for Christ-followers to have such quiet times. Because you see, there is no way to tell at the end of the day whether we actually did anything about what God's showed us. When God reveals a truth like this, He will also reveal to us a person or a situation to which we must offer the same forgiveness and opportunity.

The way you will be able to discern that God is actually changing our lives is when you can look back at the end of the day and be able answer with a yes or no regarding the question - did I do what God asked me to do that day?

So, if the application is, I need to offer to John the same opportunity for second chances that God offers me, I will be able to know whether I did that for John that day.

The application section is the most important section because that's where rubber of faith meets the road. This is where faith makes a difference.

So spend some time on this section reflecting on how God wants to impact your world.


Anonymous said...

Thx for these practical, Biblical tips!

And since it is the time of thanksgving, let me say this: I'm so grateful that I was led to TPC and that God is using you as the pastor there -- b/c I've never been so inspired and motivated and excited and confident about my faith as I am now under your leadership and thru your sermons. You have a gift for presenting God's truths in such a practical and simple you-can-live-like-this-today-and-experience-Gods-love-now way. I hope and pray daily that I will be able to do my part for the Kingdom of Heaven.

James said...

Thank you for your kind words. I am confident that together, God will impact our community for His Kingdom!