2 Timothy 3:14-17 - But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
Have you ever come to the end of a book and been frustrated because it wasn't longer? You loved the characters and you loved the world that you found in that book, and you wanted it to go on forever—at least for longer than it did. This is a common feeling, and it explains why people pester their favorite writers for more information. They feel like, if they could just get into the author's head, there would be more good stuff they could enjoy.
God knows this about us, and I sometimes think that's the reason why He made the Bible as long as it is. Of course, the Bible is actually a collection of many books, some long and some very short. But it's held together by one thing—the voice of the Holy Spirit speaking through human beings to bring us face-to-face with God our Savior.
In the books of the Bible, we see God in action. God speaks to us directly, or He speaks to people like us, and we have the privilege of overhearing. We get to see His character, the kinds of things He values and the things He can't stand. We see Him in a zillion different situations, and that makes it easier for us to recognize what He is doing in our own lives, right here and now.
To be sure, there are parts of the Bible that are very hard to understand, and these parts are different for everybody. What makes no sense to you may make perfect sense to someone in a different time or culture. So it's all right for us to say, "I don't understand this," and lay it aside for a while and go to a different part of the Bible. God will make things clear in His own time and way.
Of course, the most important thing of all is where we see God living as a human being among us—the Man Christ Jesus. God gives us four different perspectives on Jesus' life—the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Why so many? Because this is the heart of the Bible—where we see God born among us as a human being; living the same difficult, troubled life that we live; showing how much He loves us and every word He speaks and in every action He takes. This is where we see Him being betrayed by a friend, mistreated and tortured, and laying down His life on a cross. We see Him doing all of this as perfect Man and perfect God—why? To rescue us from the power of evil and make us into children of God.
And then the most wonderful chapters of all—the ones where we see Him rise from the dead, breaking the power of death for Himself and for us too, everyone who trusts in Him. As Peter says, "The promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to Himself" (Acts 2:39). Our lives have many dark and terrible chapters, just as the Bible has. But these chapters in the Bible are the guarantee of our "happily ever after" ending—because the God who gave us the Bible is the same God who is redeeming our own stories as well. We are His people, His characters—and He has made us His children through Jesus Christ our Savior.
WE PRAY: Dear Father, You gave us the Bible. Help me to find the good things You have prepared for us in it. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Kari Vo.
1. Do you find it easy or difficult to read the Bible? Why?
2. What are your favorite parts of the Bible, and why?
3. Where could you find help to grow in your understanding of what God is saying to you in the Bible?
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