How to read the Scriptures

Scriptures

Do you ever find yourself reading Scripture as a long list of impersonal rules? Do you find it difficult to get through the “boring” parts of the Old Testament? 

Reading through the Bible can be laborious if we forget that the theme for all of Scripture is Jesus Christ.  From Genesis to Revelation, He is the main character, He is the plot, He is the climax, and He is the resolution.  The Old Testament looks forward to His coming, and the New Testament shows that He came.  His life, death and resurrection are the culmination of all of Scripture (and history for that matter!), and every book of the Bible is about him.  Coming to this realization has completely transformed my quiet times.  It has helped me through the more difficult passages of Scripture, because now I know their purpose.  Whether it’s a long genealogical list or a detailed description of the temple, all of Scripture points to Jesus Christ being our prophet, priest, and king.  I now view studying Scripture as a glorious treasure hunt where I am searching for Jesus on every page (John 5:39-40; Luke 24:27).

Focusing on Christ in Scripture can change the way we look at God’s commands. 

Without Jesus, God’s laws are impossible duties (Rom. 3:20).  With Jesus, through the power of His Spirit living in me, God’s laws are indescribable delights.  They show me how great God is, how sinful I am, how much He loves me, and how utterly dependent I am on Him.

Given by a Heavenly Father who loves me and knows what is best for me, His commands also show me how life works best. When we look at God’s commands in Scripture through this relational lens, they go from being a cold list of “do’s” and “don’ts” to a treasure trove of delight. (Ps. 119:14, 16, 24, 47)  Listen to the ways David describes God’s laws:

“My soul is consumed with longing for your rules at all times.” Ps. 119:20

“Your testimonies are my delight; they are my counselors.” Ps. 119:24

I don’t hear any drudgery in these verses, do you?  David’s duty was also his delight because of his relationship with the Lord.  And it can be our delight as well.  Pray for fresh eyes and a renewed heart as you study the Scriptures, to view God as a loving Heavenly Father who gives us His laws because He is holy, He is good, He loves us, and He knows what is best for us.  Even more, He gives us His Son who kept His law perfectly and gives us His Spirit who enables us to obey with hearts of gratitude.  Let’s pray to view God’s Word as a Treasure Map that leads us into a richer relationship with Jesus our Priceless Treasure.

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