How the Bible is Not Like the Discovery Channel

The Bible is an interesting book.  It details the origin of our world, gives accounts of astounding miracles, gives grotesque examples of humanity’s sinfulness, tells the story of how God became a man and died for his enemies, and speaks of strange future events that surround the end of the world.  Where so many people have complained that the Bible is best remedy for insomnia, those of us who have spent considerable time reading it, know that its stories and descriptions have the ability to capture one’s intrigue.

However, if we find ourselves consistently walking away from our time in God’s word just thinking, “That was really interesting”, then there’s a problem.  While the Bible is interesting, it’s purpose is not simply to captivate our interest.  The Bible is not like the History Channel, the Discovery Channel, or shows like Dirty Jobs.  We look to these channels and shows because we want to know more about what happened in the past, what is going on in the rest of the world, and what people are willing to do for a paycheck.  The Bible, on the other hand, is meant to change us so that we become more like Jesus for the glory of God.  The Holy Spirit comes with God’s word to change us from the inside out; first in our conversion, and second, in our Christian growth (sanctification).  Why else would David write Psalm 19:7-8?

The law of the LORD is perfect,
    reviving the soul;
the testimony of the LORD is sure,
making wise the simple;
the precepts of the LORD are right,
   rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the LORD is pure,
enlightening the eyes

Christians, we are to be people who look to God’s word for transformation, not just information, and it won’t happen by just reading the Bible from day-to-day (thought that’s a good start).  We must strive, by God’s grace, to be hearers and doers of God’s truth (James 1:22-25).  So, here are few ways you can respond to God’s word to pursue change instead of just a satisfied curiosity.

  • Spend time praising God for something in the text you read.
  • Take one of the verses or principles from the text you read and turn it into a prayer for yourself and others.
  • Write down a specific way you can apply what you read and determine to do it before the day is over.
  • Commit to sharing what you read with another Christian so you can enjoy God together and cultivate a stronger bond between you and the other believers in your life.
  • Take an aspect of God’s character that you find in your text for the day and use it to evaluate your life and determine how you measure up.  Then ask God to forgive you of the specific ways in which you have fallen short of pleasing him in that specific area and ask him to give you the grace to honor him next time.

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About Brent Osterberg

Ransomed sinner, husband to Keri, father to the kiddos three, associate pastor at Calvary Bible Church in Fort Worth, TX, and lover of most things epic. View all posts by Brent Osterberg

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