The Bible is a collection of holy books which are filled with scripture and stories of the past. Why then do most of our Church lessons repeatedly focus on the same ones? I suppose it’s because some passages are more straightforward than others. Some passages can stand alone independent of context, while others are confusing or harder to understand. I recently decided to start reading the Bible again from beginning to end. Just like watching a movie for the second time, I began to see things that I hadn’t seen before as I read and I found the following scripture continually coming to mind.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,2 Timothy 3:16
Unlike with fiction books, no piece of information is without purpose. Nothing was added simply to paint a mental picture, increase the length of the story, or to make it more interesting to the reader. Every verse, every chapter, and every story is significant and applicable. Sometimes we just have to look harder to see it.
Because the Bible is not just a story, we can’t necessarily infer the timing of events because it is not laid out in chronological order. When we try to read it this way it can become very confusing because some events may be out of order or described more than once. For this reason, we have to read chapter by chapter assessing each one for its own purpose while also fitting it into its historical context. Needless to say, this makes reading the Bible an even longer process. But my goal for 2022, is to better understand the applicability of God’s word one passage at a time.
The first time I read Genesis it was a lot to digest. The accounts of creation, the fall of man, and the flood are some of the best known Bible stories. Yet, because they are so well known and almost fantastical, we may overlook the underlying message and how it can be applied to our own lives. Other chapters, however, were perplexing because they seemed too scandalous to be found in the Bible. Yet, all scripture “is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness” because the lessons contained in the Bible are timeless. This year I plan to dig deeper into to the Bible in order to better understand how God’s word (even the unconventional) applies to my life.