I’ll confess, I often labor under the oft-misguided-dream that all believers have a desire to dig deeper into the Bible. That all Christians have a burning intent to plumb the depths of the biblical text. Of course, my wife is quick to set me straight and bring me back to reality.
Yes, it’s true, as strange as it may seem to me, many people are quite content with a devotional approach to the Bible. They are satisfied with their Sunday morning Bible study group or their weekday study with friends and neighbors. And that’s perfectly fine.However…. (You knew that was coming didn’t you?)
When doing a morning devotion or study with friends, there may be times when you begin to ask questions or find yourself wondering, “What exactly did Jesus mean when he said that?” Or, “Why did Paul seem so agitated with those darn Christians at Galatia?”
That my friend is a signal to get the shovel out and begin to dig a little deeper.
Contrary to what is often called “popular opinion”, the Bible is not as straight forward as we might think. There are times when we confuse our way of viewing the world with the Scripture’s view of the world and we wonder why they don’t agree. As we’ve indicated before, that’s not only natural, it’s to be expected. Remember, the Bible wasn’t written to us, it was written for us. Our culture and that of the Ancient Near East or the first century church is very different. As a result there can be a certain amount of tension.
This series began several weeks ago here. Hopefully it has provided a few of you with some encouragement on how to go about the process of handling some of those “tensions”. Things we often overlook or simply ignore because we’re not sure how to deal with them. I’ve also tried to suggest tools and techniques that can help you in your “work” to uncover some of the more nuanced issues in the Bible.
Every Sunday I’m surrounded by people whose knowledge and understanding of God’s Word goes far beyond anything I’ve achieved. But that’s okay. I’m learning and that’s all I can expect of myself. The same is true for each of us. If we want to, we can learn more, understand more, and grow more in our understanding of the Bible. Is my approach to studying the Bible the only or best approach? Of course not. But, if you choose to do more in-depth Bible Study, it’s a start. And that’s where we all start—at the start.