28 Jan The Power of the Word
“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12
The Bible is the most powerful book known to man because it is living and active with the ability to speak right into a person’s heart. You can restrict its power by restricting the time you spend in it or by approaching it wrongly. During the Summer Holidays I was impressed by the Holy Spirit to read through the gospel of John and when I did I found it was a completely fresh to how I remembered it. My experience is a reflection of the living active qualities of the word of God; because it is alive it has the ability to speak directly into my circumstances.
I want to encourage you to start digging into the word of God for yourself this winter as it has the power to speak into every situation, giving us instruction, direction, faith and hope for the times ahead of us. I would like to see the Church come alive to the power of the word this autumn and I will be encouraging you to read it over the next few weeks. Reading the bible however is not like reading a novel and does require some guidance.
The Bible is a collection of 66 books and letters therefore it’s not necessary to read it from cover to cover. Here are some of the ways you can read it as found in Terry Lawson’s book “How to Study the Word”;
- The synthetic method involves reading a whole book of the bible to give an overall picture. It pays little attention to detail but instead involves looking at passages, books or letters as a whole.
- The devotional method is one by which you feed your spirit man with the word of God. It involves reading the word as part of your devotional time and allows for the word to speak into your own circumstances and heart.
- The biographical method is simply studying the history of a person within the Bible. There are nearly 3000 people named in the bible and studying their lives provides incredible insight into the dealings of God with us. I would recommend you consider studying the life of Abraham the father of faith because I have received tremendous blessings from looking at how he followed the Father.
- The Analytical method consists of pulling apart sections of scriptures, words or phrases and then analyzing the detail. It often needs helps such as a concordance, bible dictionary etc. I often will do some analytical study as I prepare to preach. I will try and look behind the English into the original language and consider what can be gleaned from other uses of a particular word within the bible. It can be a highly rewarding method of bible study.
- The topical method is a method in which one subject is selected and studied in its context through out the bible.
- The practical method involves at looking at the scriptures and considering how they should be practically applied.
- The contemplative method involves taking a phrase or verse and meditating on it over time allowing it to root deep with in the soul. Sometimes it can help to consider scriptures whilst soaking in worshipful music.
However you study the Bible the important thing is that you do study it and that the Lord does speak to you. The Bible promises that when we seek the Lord we will find him, when we seek him with all our heart (Jeremiah 29:13). Let us seek Him in His word with all our heart and I promise you He will be found by us.