Over the past couple of months I have been trying out some new techniques for reading the Bible. In the past I would read through a passage, write down a couple of verses that applied to where I was at the time, and then pray through some of those verses. Although, this is not a bad method, I have discovered a few new ways to read the Bible.
After doing some meditation on the status of my heart, I realized that I did not believe God’s promises in the way that I should. Someone recommended to me that I should go to an online Bible and search for the words, “In Christ”, “In Him”, “In Jesus” and go through those verses looking at all of the promises Christ gives to me.
For example one of the verses that came up was Romans 3:21.
“But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it- the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe.”
So looking at that verse I wrote this in my journal…
In Christ, I have God’s righteousness. I am no longer judged by who I am, but who Christ is.
This helped me immensely, because instead of believing that I was a sinner beyond saving, I could know that I have the righteousness of God. Tons of other verses came up in the search, and I still take time to go through those once in a while.
Another way I have been going through my Bible is by having a concept in mind while reading. For example, recently, I have struggled to trust in God’s plan for my life. So, while reading through Romans this past week, I looked for verses that pertained to God’s providence and sovereignty. This technique has been immensely helpful. I do not mean that you should read through and ignore everything else that is in the text, but have an attribute of God in mind while reading it, and try to connect the passage back to that attribute.
For instance, while in Romans 5 recently, I came across verses 3-5. “More than that, we rejoice in our suffering, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”
After reading this with God’s sovereignty in mind I was encouraged by God’s control and his hand even in our suffering. When I actually started looking for God’s sovereignty, I saw it all over the Bible.
These two techniques have been helpful to me recently. If you struggle with trusting God and his promises for you, try them out. The point is to make sure that you don’t just read through the Bible with a blank mind. Instead, use these techniques to fight to believe the gospel more and more.