A Tennessee church member known affectionately as “Miss Hellen” has read through her Bible 60 times and has just started reading through it again; she is 99. Her reason for reading through it is God shows her something new every time she reads it.
George Muller said he had read through his Bible 200 times, a hundred times on his knees. Bible reading is a life changing discipline. I am currently on my fifty-fifth reading through the Scriptures. I read through them every year.
Dwight L. Moody said he never read another book unless it taught him something about the Bible and Smith Wigglesworth said he never read another book but the Bible (he was illiterate until he married and his wife taught him to read from the Bible and he never read another book).
There was a time when believers wished to own a copy of the Scriptures but could not afford one. It required paying someone to write a copy by hand, a very expensive proposition. With the invention of the printing press copies of the Bible became more affordable. The first publication to roll off the press was a Bible.
Since then the Bible has become more available only to witness a decline in reading it. Biblical illiteracy seems to be at an all time high, or should I say low. I overhear conversations about the Bible that supports that claim; people say things about the Bible that are not true because they have either never read it or have read it so little they have forgotten what it said.
Believers who have never read through it are missing a blessing, and unbelievers who never have ignore what is recognized even by its critics as a great piece of literature.
So, why do I discipline myself to read through the Scriptures again and again? It is a fair question.
First, I am reminded of God’s truths. As humans we have a great capacity to forget and our memory needs to be refreshed if we don’t want it supplanted by our imagination.
Second, I learn things or see things I missed in an earlier reading, things that have become clearer or more visible as I grow and, hopefully, mature in Christ.
Third, reading the Scriptures allows me to focus on the Father’s divine perspective and not be distracted by current events that may overwhelm the thinking of the best of us. We tend to see events through the lens of time, God sees events through the lens of eternity; I think we are in constant need of the Father’s eternal perspective so we do not lose our way in time.
And last, the demands of life make the need for wisdom from above a daily necessity. I know no better source for such wisdom than God’s Word.
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path,” Psalm 119:105. With His light so readily available, why stumble in the dark?