Have you ever received a special letter in the mail? How did you read it?
Did you halt all else until you could savor the words? Maybe you sipped something while you slowly soaked up the sentences, or stole away to a quiet place away from interruptions to think on the meaning. Maybe you kept it hidden and re-read it habitually.
Did you honor this message because you couldn’t wait to get your hands on a good one-pager of literature?
No! You pored over those words and gave them special treatment because the person whose heart they flowed from had a special place in your life.
The words that we most treasure come from the people we most cherish. The person behind the words determines the power of their influence in our lives.
We read the Bible the same way we read a special letter. It has a powerful influence on our lives and a reserved place in our hearts because we love its Author.
Those of us who have read it through, know the story. Each one of us lived in rebellion against God and deserved his punishment, but God sent his Son Jesus to be our substitute. Jesus suffered for our sins, died on a cross, but rose from the dead three days later. Through this death, he reconciled our relationship with God and gave us new life (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). This new life is a life of knowing, obeying and enjoying God as we were created to do (John 17:3).
Our Maker himself has shared his thoughts with us and made them accessible to us at all times.
When we open the Bible, our Creator, who designed us and delivered our souls from death, speaks to us. He tells us the story of how he demonstrated his love for us, how to get to know him better, and what he has determined to do with his creation.
What other voice could be more important in our lives than the voice of our Maker, our Savior, the very life-giver himself (John 1:1,4)?
So how should we read the Bible? Read the Bible like it is God’s own Word to you, his gift to you given out of his love, and the means of drawing near to him.
The Bible isn’t a letter in your mailbox, but a book on your shelf. How often, how happily, and how diligently you open it will be determined by how deeply you understand the character of its Author.
So read it like it’s from someone who loves you, and read it because you want to love him better too.