At this time of the year I like to make goals for what’s ahead. And one of my goals always includes Bible reading.
The ways I read God’s word vary—sometimes I read it in big chunks, other times in small bites. But I try to consistently read. Consistent doesn’t mean I read every single day, although I’d like to. There are some days that it just doesn’t work. But I always return to the habit of reading God’s word because through the years I’ve seen what a difference it makes in my life.
Here’s a list of 10 reasons why I read the Bible—and why I hope you’ll read it too.
1. God’s word tells the truth. We are lied to all the time—we even lie to ourselves. God’s word serves as a truth check. It frees us from the lies that slowly burden our hearts and it reorients us to the truth.
“If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31
“I run in the path of your commands, for you have set my heart free.” Psalm 119:32
2. God’s word helps me know God. That may seem obvious, but sometimes we get distracted by the details and totally miss him. He gave us scripture to know him, not just know about him. His words invite us into a relationship. He even sent his son as living words so we would fully know him.
“In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.” Hebrews 1:1-3
3. God’s word comforts in troubling times.
“My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word.” Psalm 119:28
“I remember your ancient laws, O Lord, and I find comfort in them.” Psalm 119:52
4. God’s word teaches wisdom. Experience alone doesn’t make one wise. It’s when we view our experiences through the lenses of God’s truths that we grow in wisdom.
“The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.” Psalm 19:7
“…the holy Scriptures are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.” II Timothy 3:15
5. God’s word gives understanding and good counsel. It puts things in perspective when life gets fuzzy.
“I gain understanding from your precepts; therefore I hate every wrong path.” Psalm 119:104
“The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to your people.” Psalm 119:130
6. God’s word equips us for his works. It’s our toolkit for his kingdom work.
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” II Timothy 3:15-16
7.God’s word guards the heart from sin. Scripture helped Jesus resist the devil’s temptations. It does the same for us.
“I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” Psalm 119:11
8.God’s word transforms us because it is living and active today. Reading his word is a real time conversation, not a stagnant page from history.
“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword. It penetrates even to diving soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12 “For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.” I Peter 1:23
9. God’s word gives hope.
“You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word.” Psalm 119:114
10. God’s word revives the soul and gives joy to the heart.
“The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul.” Psalm 19:7
“The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart.” Psalm 19:8
Why wouldn’t we read this amazing book? These days it’s hard to know if what we’re reading is truth or lies, and if it’s good advise or from a quack.
We can open God’s word and know that it speaks truth as it invites us into a relationship with him. It gives hope and revives the soul. It gives good counsel and understanding for our lives. And it transforms better than any self-help book on the shelf.
I definitely believe it’s worth it to carve out time to read God’s word. I’ll be honest, though– I don’t walk away with a golden nugget every time I read it. It takes time and perseverance. But that’s the way any relationship is.
I hope this list helps you decide it’s worth it to you too. If you’d like to get started and aren’t sure where to begin, check out one of the gospels—Matthew, Mark, Luke or John. It’ll be a great place to get to know God through the story of his son, Jesus.
What other reason would you add to this list to read God’s word?