5/03/2015

An Encouragement to Study Scripture (and Isaiah)

From this Sunday, May 3, 2015, West Loop UBF will begin studying of a new book of the Bible--Isaiah. As we begin I would like to encourage our church community to prayerfully study Scripture in general and Isaiah in particular over the coming year, as God willing, we will plow through all 66 chapters of Isaiah!

Personally, I regard the serious study of Scripture as the most important, significant and necessary daily activity of every Christian. Why? In a word, it is because of the countless benefits of studying Scripture from our hearts as our daily priority.

What are the benefits of studying Scripture with all of our hearts?

  1. A rich life, a fulfilling life (Jn 6:63).
  2. A Spirit-filled life (Jn 6:63; Gal 5:22-23; 2 Cor 3:17).
  3. A useful and profitable life (2 Tim 3:16).
  4. A life of love and delight (Eph 5:2; Ps 1:2; 119:97).
  5. A wholesome life of flourishing (Ac 20:27).
  6. A life in constant awe of the amazing grace of God (Ac 20:24; Eph 2:8-9; 2 Tim 2:1; Tit 2:10).
  7. A life of blessing (Gen 12:2; 1 Pet 4:11).
Some questions for your own personal HOT reflection and contemplation (There are no right and wrong answers, good and bad answers. These questions are primarily for those who profess to be Christians who regard the Bible as the Word of God.):
  1. Are you happy?
  2. Are you happy with your life and your lot in life?
  3. Do you sense God's presence in your heart and life? Or do you feel a dryness about your life?
  4. Do you generally love people, or are you often angry and annoyed at certain people?
  5. Are you aware that you compare yourself with others, compete with others and try to control others?
  6. Do you feel guilty about anything?
  7. Are you able to freely confess your sins to others?
  8. What do you do the first thing in the morning?
  9. What do you do the last thing before you retire at night?
  10. Do you have a daily schedule for studying Scripture? For prayer, silence, solitude, reflection and contemplation?
  11. Do you read the Bible every day? How much?
  12. Do you find it difficult (or burdensome or unproductive) to read the Bible?
  13. How much time do you spend studying and reflecting on Scripture each day?
  14. Is there something that consumes or distracts you from studying Scripture?
  15. Are you excited about reading and studying Scripture for yourself? Sharing and teaching Scripture to others?
  16. Do you have a favorite book in the Bible?
  17. Do you have one or more favorite verses in the Bible that you recite often to yourself and/or to share with others?
  18. Will you consider having an accountability partner or mentor or both to help you study the Scriptures faithfully and diligently?