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Jan

19

2011

Reading the Bible for More than Encouragement

What do you read the Bible for? Many people read the Bible to find something encouraging. They read the same passages. They read to find strength and joy for that day. This is not wrong, but it is short, I think, of what God would have for us.

It is no wonder that in this kind of Christianity does not dedicate much time to reading the Old Testament. What room is there for reading about how to do a sacrifice in Leviticus 1-6 if all you're looking for is encouragement? Why not read Philippians over and over again, or at least the Psalms?

The Bible is not just for getting encouragement for the day, but for gaining a radically God-centered perspective on all of life. This is a greater goal addressing a greater need.

Our greater need is not simply a need for encouragement, but that our minds are radically man-centered and idolatrous, and we need to be reminded it is not all about us! (Is not this kind of Bible-reading a kind of expression of this very man-centered way of thinking?) The goal is that God is restored to his rightful place as our King, and our hearts are restored to the rightful place of esteeming and treasuring him. 

When this happens, we will be encouraged--and not just encouraged, but transformed. From this fountain will flow a life of God-centered obedience and joy, which is a greater goal than a temporary lifting of our spirits.

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Matt Hauck (郝柏昇)

A once enemy now son, forgiven and freed by Jesus' blood, adopted and called by grace for glory.   (more...)

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