Upon arriving at STP, one of the items students receive is a calendar of June and July. For each day – minus one day of 'catch up' per week – there is a verse or chunk of verses from Galatians to study.
There is great importance to studying the Bible each and every day.
I want to pause to discredit any ideas that we are pushing legalism.
In case you are unfamiliar with the term, here is the definition of “legalism” from Dictionary.com:
1. strict adherence, or the principle of strict adherence, to law or prescription, especially to the letter rather than the spirit.
2. Theology .
a.the doctrine that salvation is gained through good works.
b.the judging of conduct in terms of adherence to precise laws.
By no means does Campus Outreach or Bethlehem Baptist agree with legalism. We are saved and sustained by grace through faith alone. No amount of studying the Bible can add or subtract from our salvation.
However, there is so much to benefit from getting in the Word each day, and that is where we want our hearts to land.
I’m glad I didn’t write this blog post sooner, because Reed Schaaf, a team leader from the U of M, just gave a talk on “Maximizing Your Time in God’s Word” yesterday at Bible Study Training, and it was helpful in thinking through why we want to get in the Word every day.
There were a few one-liners that Reed said yesterday that I think are particularly helpful to this topic. I’d love to share a few:
- “If you don’t plan to study the Bible, you won’t study the Bible.”
Because of our sinful nature and the fact that our adversary (Satan) loves to distract us from God, we are not naturally bent toward seeking the Lord above all else. We constantly run toward things that are not Jesus. Therefore, having some structure can be helpful in attaining and maintaining consistency when it comes to studying the Bible.
- 2 Corinthians 3:18 says, "And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit."
Let’s let scripture speak for itself. This passage basically describes sanctification; we are, by the power of the Holy Spirit, being transformed and changed from one degree of glory to the next. Our old self is perishing as He changes us to be more like Himself. How does this happen? When we are “beholding the glory of the Lord.” What is one way to do that? TO READ THE BIBLE! He gave us a book about Himself! It only makes sense that we would spend time reading it in order to better know our savior.
- “Reading the Bible is like adding soil to a pot. The more soil you add, the deeper and healthier the roots will become.”
We want to have deep roots. We want our lives to be so firmly planted in the Word of God, that circumstances and trials don’t shake us like they should. We want our hope to be so firmly rooted in Jesus Christ, that distractions of this world don’t affect us like they could. We want to study the Bible each day so that our roots my grow deep and our joy may be made more full in Jesus.