Any Christian can read the Bible to understand it for what it says without realizing the immersed value the Bible will have on their spiritual walk and relationship with God. This can leave a believer feeling ineffective and unfruitful in their walk, thus causing them to doubt their salvation, question God’s love towards them, and even lead them to live in fear, guilt, or even worse in a state, sin. Take the Apostle Peter’s letter in 2 Peter 1:1-15 to the Gentile believers. This letter did not only reassure the Gentile believers of their salvation in Christ Jesus, however the apostle Peter also reminded them to make every effort to include eight effective qualities to their walk which will reassure them as they make their calling and election sure.
The knowledge of God and Jesus Christ is Key in being an effective and fruitful believer. This is not mere knowledge which leads to a barren Christian walk; however it is the knowledge that leads to a fruitful Christian walk by means of the Holy Spirit. We must remember that God intended for us to study this divine infallible word that He has given to us as the Apostle Paul confirms when he wrote to Timothy saying:
“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.” (2 timothy 2:15 ESV)
Inspired by God, using men that He chose by means of the Holy Spirit, His words are for us to equip ourselves daily as we live for Him:
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 timothy 3:16-17 ESV)
God speaks to us through His word, to draw us closer to Himself. This ultimately allows us to live by the Holy Spirit which brings forth fruit that we must bear as it is written:
“But the fruit of the Spirit is Joy, Love, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, faithfulness, Gentleness, Self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.”(Galatians 5:22-25 ESV).
In today’s society, many Christian youth do not read the Bible for many different reasons because they have forgotten the main purpose of studying God’s word. As a believer who teaches and counsels other Christians with the word of God, I have come to the realization that there are many reasons as to why some may not read the bible. I have summed up 11 reasons in which I will state and analyse in the remainder of this article:
1. Some believe the Bible is a fallible book written by men that have been tampered with, which includes missing books.
2. The bible is confusing because it contradicts itself.
3. Some secretly believe the bible doesn’t really matter because they do not benefit from it.
4. The bible is just a Mythical book which holds no relevance to today’s world.
5. Some would rather have their pastor or friend who is more knowledgeable read and explain the Bible to them.
6. The bible is boring.
7. Reading the bible makes them sleepy.
8. In the midst of a busy world, many feel that they won’t have time to read the bible.
9. Some don’t know where to start.
10. Some feel they never get anything out of it.
11. Some forget what they read or get distracted while trying to read.
These are simply eleven out of the many reasons as to why most people do not read the Bible. This shows a sign of spiritually weak youths in the community. As a Christian, you will know if you truly understand the bible by diligently studying the word of God once you are being led by the Holy Spirit:
“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16 ESV)
“But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.” (Galatians 5:18 ESV)
“If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:25 ESV)
While applying the Bible’s teachings to your everyday life God’s reliable words will strengthen your relationship with Christ as He transforms you to be more like His Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. In other words, you will be able to apply the basic teachings in the greatest commandment:
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with your entire mind. This is the great and First commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:36-39 ESV)
By living out the Word of God you will be able to apply the teachings and principles that are stated throughout the Bible without having to think about it (it becomes a habit). Relying on the Holy Spirit to lead you by being consistent with prayer at all times will also become evident in your life upon consistent reading and studying of your Bible. Reading the Bible is having a relationship with God; it is God speaking to you. Many Christian youths know of the Bible or read it ever so often and claim to have a relationship with God, however when it comes to living by the Holy Spirit and applying its teachings it becomes a different story. We are expected not to conform to the pattern of this world and to renew our minds every single day, allowing the Bible to filter everything we see and hear:
“I appeal to you therefore, brothers by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:1-2 ESV)
Our thinking and lifestyle must continue to change and be in line with the word of God which is our standard and guide for living in this fallen world as stated by the Apostle John:
“Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world— the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life —is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.”(1 John 2:15-17 ESV).
What are the basic characteristics and qualities that should come as a result of your reverence to the word of God? Love, Forgiveness, Peace, Joy, Humility, Serving, Self-control, Goodness, Patience, Kindness, Bearing with one another, being slow to anger, putting others interests before yours, and not Boasting. By applying the bible to our everyday life we are enabled not to conform to the ways of this world. Once everything that was at one point normal to you is no longer normal, you started hating the things you once loved and love the things you once hated, once you constantly think about God seeking Him more in His word and in prayer, and living by His will; Then, you will truly know that you understand the Bible the way God intends for us to know and believe in it.