How will reading God’s Word make your life better?
Just as your body needs food to survive and grow strong, your spirit needs spiritual nourishment from God’s Word. This little analogy crops up repeatedly in both the Old and New Testaments:
When Jesus said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God,” He was quoting Moses.1
Job declared in his time of suffering, “I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food.”2
In Psalm 119, King David said to the Lord, “How sweet are Your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!”3
The apostle Peter, writing to new Christians, admonished them to “as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word.”4
When you received Jesus into your heart, you began a wonderful and fulfilling personal relationship with Him. He wants to be your best friend, counselor, teacher, guide, and much more! The way to get to know Him better is through His Word. The four Gospels, especially, reveal His nature, His personality, His power, and His love.
He wants His relationship with you to be a two-way, give-and-take affair. It is through reading the Word that you will find out not only what He has for you, but also what He would like from you.
Think of His words as personal love letters to you from the one who knows and cares about you more than any other can.
It seems that everywhere you look today, someone is marketing “the truth” in the form of some new book, program, or product. Who are you supposed to believe—and how much will it cost you?
Well, Jesus has the real article. “If you abide in My word,” He promises, “you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”5
You can rest assured that the Bible tells the truth. Become familiar with its precepts, and you will have a standard by which you can measure all things.
Faith isn’t something you can try to have. It comes by taking in the Word of God.6 If you’re weak in faith, it’s probably because you’re not reading and believing God’s Word enough. But the more you read and study the Word with an open mind and receptive heart, the more your faith will grow. It’s that simple and that sure!
Lasting happiness comes from following Jesus’ loving example, and you know how to do that from His Word. Jesus said, “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love. … These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.”7
By studying God’s Word, you will come to understand His loving ways. This will give you faith that whatever your circumstances may be, He is in control and has your best interests at heart. “Now acquaint yourself with Him, and be at peace; thereby good will come to you.”8 When disappointments, obstacles, and setbacks wear on you, taking a little time to read from God’s Word will put things back in proper perspective.
When you’ve got questions, the Lord has answers, and when you have problems, He has solutions—and they’re all in His Word. By reading God’s recorded Word or hearing Him speak to your heart personally when you pray for guidance—His spoken Word—you can find the answer to every question and every problem you will ever have. Once you become familiar with the spiritual principles, divine wisdom, and practical counsel that are in the written Word, you will find that the Lord will show you how to apply it to questions and problems that come up in your own life. His Word will be like a light, illuminating the path ahead of you.9
God has a plan for your life. He knows what’s best for you, so if you can learn to let Him direct your decisions, everything will work out great in the end. It sounds simple enough, but how do you find out what is God’s best for you in a particular situation? How do you find “God’s will”?
The Word is the known, sure, absolute, revealed will of God. So when you’re faced with a decision, look at all He’s said before. Pattern your decision on a similar situation in the Word, or on the foundation principles of God’s Word. You can also ask God to speak to your own heart directly and show you what His will is for you in that particular situation.10
God’s Word also has the power to change the way you see life’s problems. It will cause you to “be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove [know] what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”11
The Bible is full of stories about otherwise ordinary men and women whose faith and love for God saw them through thick and thin and made them great in His eyes. Much can be learned and much strength can be drawn from their examples. There are also many faith-building accounts of God’s love and care for His children, His protection, and His supply of their every need, as well as examples of what not to do and the consequences of violating His spiritual principles. “Whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.”12
The Bible is full of promises that God has made to man—promises that He wants us to apply practically. Some of His promises are universal, like “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”13 Others were originally made to certain individuals or groups, but they are also available to anyone who applies them to their own similar situation and meets whatever conditions may be attached.
As you become more familiar with God’s Word, you will learn to recognize His promises and claim them as your own. When you do that, it shows you have faith. It’s a positive declaration of your faith and knowledge of the Word which pleases God and sets His power in motion to answer your prayers.
It is difficult to follow Christ’s injunction to “love your neighbor as yourself”14 when your “neighbors”—those you interact with on a regular basis—are sometimes the most difficult people to get along with, much less love. Where do you find the “Christian grace” to overlook the overbearing boss, the jealous coworker, the noisy partyers next door, or worse? How do you learn to love as Jesus loved? “Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.”15 As you read and study God’s Word, you’ll acquire more and more of His Spirit and love, and that will help you be more understanding, compassionate, and tolerant toward others.