“I have esteemed the words of His mouth more than my necessary food” (Job 23:12)
The question I would like to ask is whether you study the Bible now with the same eagerness as when you were newly saved and had a fresh appreciation of what the Lord did for you? It is a question for all believers at the present moment, for it concerns the spiritual welfare of every child of God. There is no spiritual growth without it, as Peter reminds us after dealing with the necessary condition of the soul: “As newborn babes, desire earnestly the pure mental milk of the word, that by it ye may grow up to salvation” (1 Peter 2:2); and as Paul teaches when he writes to Timothy, “From a child thou hast known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 2:15).
Now there are three ways in which it is possible to read the Word of God. It may be read from a sense of duty; it may be resorted to for help and guidance; and it may be read from delight in Him, whose Word it is, and whose precious treasures of grace and blessing it unfolds. These three methods mark for some different stages of spiritual life. They began by reading from a sense of obligation, they proceeded in due time to reading for help and teaching, and finally they read because they realized that God’s words were “more to be desired than gold, yea, than much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb” (Psalm 19:10). This last method, as many have found, is the only true way of Bible study.
It is important to read the Scripture—devotionally and systematically. In the former, I listen to what the Lord communicates and look to Him to produce in me the suited effect of His truth by the working of His Spirit. Thus I become formed by the truth; worship and holiness of life result. In the latter, I search and examine to discover His mind, and what is taught on any given subject. I look to Him to give me understanding by the Spirit; to preserve me from error and to enable me to form His own judgment—to discover and to hold the truth in a divine way. Dependence is, therefore, of all importance. Nothing so keeps us in dependence as the sense of being in the presence of God in order to receive divine communications. It greatly helps if we read the Scriptures regularly and systematically. The more we read, the more we desire to read; and if nothing is allowed to interfere with the seasons set apart for this purpose, the reading will soon become as much a necessity as our daily food.
I trust that you will enjoy the great articles in this issue during the summer months. It is our prayer that the Lord would use them for building you up in your most holy faith and help you to be established. Thank you for your e-mails and notes of encouragement.
Please keep praying for the Lord’s blessing on Toward the Mark.
Yours in our soon-coming Lord,
Emil S. Nashed
Please send your questions and comments to:
Toward The Mark
c/o Wayne Christian Assembly
60 Smith Lane
Wayne, NJ 07470-5354
Attention: Emil S. Nashed