Why Study the Bible?

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“You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me! Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life.” John 5:39-40

It’s still the best-selling book of all time and there’s a reason why.

The Bible has been revered throughout history unlike any other writing. Since the time of the Romans, treasured copies of it were carefully hand lettered and decorated, or illuminated, with colorful flourishes and miniature illustrations. These illuminated manuscripts can be seen in museums, preserved behind glass.

In ancient days, the Jewish religious leaders studied the Bible, well, religiously, interpreting it for the people. Jesus had a conversation with these experts of scripture. They relied on their knowledge of religious law to make them righteous and decided who was ok with God and who wasn’t. But Jesus told them they had missed the entire point, saying, “You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me! Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life” (John 5:39-40).

Just as those old copies of scripture were illuminated with color and illustration, the Bible is illuminated by the Holy Spirit, to point to Jesus Himself. Study the scripture, to find me, Jesus says. God’s Spirit helps us see the living Jesus as we study the Bible. Paul, the follower of Jesus explained, “And we have received God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so that we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us” (I Corinthians 2:12).

Encountering Jesus though, is costly (Matthew 16:24,25). He says to us, “Give up your ways for mine, your fleeting life of struggle for my abundant, never-ending one.” You can miss Jesus in your endless Bible study if you really don’t want to find Him or hear His call for your surrender to Him.

The Bible is the world’s best seller because it’s alive with Jesus.