Why read it? Why read the Bible? It’s been a best seller for years, but researchers say about half of us have read little to none of it. Maybe people just don’t read anymore. How else do we account for the fact that only about a quarter of us read it consistently? It’s the greatest book ever written and nobody reads it.
I have the answer. I know why people don’t read it. No, it’s not because of the writing style, or that it’s old and boring. Nah. People don’t read it because it makes them uncomfortable. If what’s written is true, people will squirm when they read it. It’s a very convicting book.
Many who do read it only pay attention to the verses that fit their worldview, and quickly skim over the rest. It’s sort of like, “I have my version of the truth and I don’t need the Bible confusing things.” In other words, “I have my ‘non-negotiable personal opinions,’ so leave me alone. Don’t tell me how to live my life.”
Other than sections that are obviously poetry or allegory, we should interpret the Bible literally. If we don’t, we make ourselves the determiners of which parts to interpret literally, and we elevate ourselves above God. Who’s to say that one person’s interpretation of a biblical event or truth is any more or less valid than another? The confusion and distortions that will result from this kind of system will soon make the Scriptures null and void. The Bible is God’s Word to us, and He means for it to be believed—literally and completely.
Are there any good arguments on why we should read it?
- You really can’t have significant spiritual growth unless you read it.
- It helps us understand who God is and why he loves us.
- It reveals his will for our lives.
- Reading helps us to see God’s truths and to learn to discern right from wrong.
- To understand the significance of the death of Jesus.
- To learn how to live our lives in a secular world that is full of false teachings.
Give it a try. Get a translation you can understand and start reading in the New Testament. (There are many you can look at online and compare.) The book of Luke or John is a good place to start. Read a couple paragraphs every day and ask God to show you what his book says about Jesus and his love for you.
Good stuff, Jeff! Thanks.