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Learning to Read

April 9, 2013

Reading the Bible is different than any other book. Once we have read through it, we are not done; we have only just begun. We are an information society, full of facts and knowledge. But the Bible is a formation book. It doesn’t merely fill our minds with facts. It reaches inside of us and reshapes our soul. It must be read slowly and thoughtfully.

Psalm 119.105Dallas Willard writes in his book, Hearing God:

You may have been told that it is good to read the Bible through every year and that you can ensure this will happen by reading so many verses per day from the Old and New Testaments. If you do this you may enjoy the reputation of one who reads the Bible through each year, and you may congratulate yourself on it. But will you become more like Christ and more filled with the life of God? It is a proven fact that many who read the Bible in this way, as if they were taking medicine or exercising on a schedule, do not advance spiritually. It is better in one year to have ten good verses transferred into the substance of our lives than to have every word of the Bible flash before our eyes. Remember that “the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life” (2 Cor. 3:6). We read to open ourselves to the Spirit.

What is your reaction to the possibility that 10 verses may be better than the whole book?

What verse or passage is working its way into your heart? How is the Bible helping you to grow in your relationship to Jesus?

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