“Examining” the scriptures—think for a minute your reaction if you had been feeling ill for weeks--fever, nausea, exhaustion, pain in some specified location--and your doctor examined you the way you examine God’s word. If you didn’t sue for malpractice, you would at least change doctors. At least that’s the way most people study their Bibles.
We simply do not think it’s that important. Don’t object—if it were important, you would find the time and do it that way, a deep examination. Jesus said of the Jews, You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, (John 5:39). At least they had the right motive, eternal life. At least they did the work. We can’t even seem to get that part right—we’re too busy, and memory verses are for kids, right? What their children memorized in the synagogue schools would put us to shame.
But putting forth the effort is only half the battle. In the next verse, Jesus says they missed the obvious—Him! They could quote till Doomsday and still not get it right if they did not open their minds to what the Word teaches. First let me refer you back to the Jan 24 post, “A Little Knowledge.” Opening the mind isn’t as easy as you think it is, and most of us not only don’t do so, we don't even realize we haven't.
A few years ago I had a request for study tips. I think now I am ready to share what has taken me so long to figure out myself. A couple of years ago I had a five or six part series that took you through a basic method I use, step by step. If you are interested, you can find it by clicking on Bible Study on the right sidebar and scrolling down till you find it. This time I will be sharing little tips I use all the time almost without thinking because they have become so automatic, rules (yes, there are some), and also the results of my studies that might be new to you. What is learning for, if you don’t share it?
These will not be regular, like one of my Monday morning series, but more like the series I do on hymns (Do You Know What You Are Singing?) Look for the opening tag “Study Time,” as in the title above. In the beginning while I have several things to share already lined up, you may see it a couple times a month, and after that a little more irregularly as things occur to me. If you think you might have missed some, you can always check the archives under Bible study or go to that month’s archives and scroll back through the week you might have missed checking. I post five days a week, I just don’t link them all, so you can also check up on other articles about other subjects that you might have missed.
Just remember this, if our opening passage means anything it means that God judges us by our Bible study. If we want Him to find us “noble,” and if we want to “find Eternal Life,” the way we dig into the Word of God will show it.
Oh how I love your law! It is my meditation all the day. Your commandment makes me wiser than my enemies, for it is ever with me. I have more understanding than all my teachers, for your testimonies are my meditation. (Ps 119:97-99)