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How to Make the Bible Come Alive

This article is based on Pastor Adrian Rogers' message, How to Make Your Bible Come Alive.

Psalm 119:89

Psalm 119

If you do not know, love, and obey the Word of God, you are not a victorious Christian. What we think, we are. Therefore, what we think needs to be molded by the Word of God.

What is the best way to start studying the Bible?

Understand What the Word of God Is

If you do not appreciate what the Word of God is, you will not have a desire to learn it.

God’s Word Is Timeless

Psalm 119:89,152
Forever, O LORD, Your word is settled in heaven….Concerning Your testimonies,
I have known of old that You have founded them forever.

Thousands of years have passed since the Bible was written. Empires have risen, fallen, and gone from the scene. Civilizations have changed. But the Bible stands, because it is founded in Heaven. The Bible is timeless, ultimate, and indestructible.

God’s Word Is True

Psalm 119:142,151,160
Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and Your law is truth…. You are near, O LORD, and all Your commandments are truth….The entirety of Your word is truth, and every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever.

In a world that has lost its appreciation for truth, you can say without a stutter that the Bible is true.

It is attacked by liberals who deny the Bible. Some theological experts today think we ought to re-examine the Bible. Perhaps we ought to re-examine the experts.

The Word of God is attacked by those who are always talking about experiences. “What I feel…what I think…” Paul had to deal with some of these in Corinth, and he said to them: “If anyone thinks himself to be a prophet or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things which I write to you are the commandments of the Lord. But if anyone is ignorant, let him be ignorant” (1 Corinthians 14:37-38). In other words, if you are spiritual, you will acknowledge that the Bible is God’s Word.

Others want to replace God’s Word (or at least prop it up) with psychology or philosophy, as if the Bible itself is not good enough.

But if you are looking for truth, you can find it in the Bible. Why is this?

Inspired Scripture

“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God” (2 Timothy 3:16a). That word “inspiration” is used only once in the Bible. It is translated from the Greek word theopneustos, which literally means “God-breathed.” Jesus said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4b).

God breathed out the Scriptures. He used human penmen: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Matthew, Paul. “Prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:21).

God’s Word Should Be Treasured

Because the Bible is timeless and true, it should be treasured.

Psalm 119:72,103,127
The law of Your mouth is better to me than thousands of coins of gold and silver…. How sweet are Your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!...Therefore I love Your commandments more than gold, yes, than fine gold!

Is that true of you? Saints and heroes have pillowed their heads upon the Word of God as they walked through the chilly waters of death. You will never have a victorious Christian life if you do not love the Bible.

Draw Life from the Word of God

The Bible is living. (See Hebrews 4:12; John 6:63.) Not only must you appreciate it, you must assimilate it.

Pray God’s Word

Psalm 119:12
Blessed are You, O LORD! Teach me Your statutes.

Pray over the Bible, and ask God to teach you. When you are praying God’s Word, what will happen?

God will open your eyes. “Open my eyes, that I may see Wondrous things from Your law” (Psalm 119:18).

God will stir your heart. “Incline my heart to Your testimonies, and not to covetousness” (Psalm 119:36). If you do not have a desire for the Bible, ask God to move your heart.

God will enlighten your mind. “Your hands have made me and fashioned me; give me understanding, that I may learn Your commandments” (Psalm 119:73).

Meditate on God’s Word

Psalm 119:14,147-148
I will meditate on Your precepts, and contemplate Your ways….I rise before the dawning of the morning, and cry for help; I hope in Your word. My eyes are awake through the night watches, that I may meditate on Your word.

Ponder it, with a pencil in hand. You have the “mind of Christ” (see Corinthians 2:16), so use your mind as you study the Bible.

Six Questions for Studying the Bible

When you look at a passage, ask these six questions:

1. Is there a promise to claim?

2. Is there a lesson to learn?

3. Is there a blessing to enjoy?

4. Is there a command to obey?

5. Is there a sin to avoid?

6. Is there a new thought to carry with me?

Memorize God’s Word

Psalm 119:11,16
Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You….I will delight myself in Your statutes; I will not forget Your word.

You can remember far more than you think you can.

Your mind is a marvel. But so often it is full of junk! Think of your mind like a garden. Have you ever noticed how much easier it is to grow weeds than flowers and vegetables? To preserve the Word of God, you have to cultivate your mind—weed your garden.

Practice God’s Word

Psalm 119:1-4
Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD! Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, who seek Him with the whole heart! They also do no iniquity; they walk in His ways. You have commanded us to keep Your precepts diligently.

It is not enough to recite the promises without obeying the commandments.

Do you want to learn the Bible? Obey the part that you know. “For whoever has, to him more will be given, and he will have abundance” (Matthew 13:12a). The more you obey, the more you learn.

Proclaim God’s Word

Psalm 119:13,46,172
With my lips I have declared all the judgments of Your mouth….I will speak of Your testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed….My tongue shall speak of Your word, for all Your commandments are righteousness.

Give it away. Let the Word of God be constantly in your mouth.

Be Changed by the Word of God

The knowledge that you have about God’s Word will become transformational.

Victory: “I will walk at liberty, for I seek Your precepts” (Psalm 119:45).

Growth: “I will run the course of Your commandments, for You shall enlarge my heart” (Psalm 119:32). A sermon on Sunday is just to whet your appetite. If you do not learn how to feed yourself the Word of God, you will not grow. (See 1 Peter 2:2.)

Joy: “Your statutes have been my songs in the house of my pilgrimage….Your testimonies I have taken as a heritage forever, for they are the rejoicing of my heart” (Psalm 119:54,111).

Power: “My soul melts from heaviness; strengthen me according to Your word” (Psalm 119:28).

Guidance: “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105).

You can have all these wonderful things, but only after you have received life from the Word of God.

List of Scriptures Referenced in this Article

Psalm 119; 1 Corinthians 2:16, 14:37-38; 2 Timothy 3:16; Matthew 4:4, 13:12; 2 Peter 1:21; Hebrews 4:12; John 6:63; 1 Peter 2:2

More Bible Verses on How to Study the Word of God

Deuteronomy 4:2
You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.
Deuteronomy 12:28
Observe and obey all these words which I command you, that it may go well with you and your children after you forever, when you do what is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God.
Deuteronomy 17:18-20
Also it shall be, when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write for himself a copy of this law in a book, from the one before the priests, the Levites. And it shall be with him, and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God and be careful to observe all the words of this law and these statutes, that his heart may not be lifted above his brethren, that he may not turn aside from the commandment to the right hand or to the left, and that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he and his children in the midst of Israel.
Acts 17:10a-11
Then the brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea....These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.