Rules For Bible Study #1

Franklin Camp

One of the great needs of today is a renewed interest in Bible study. The restoration was born of dedicated Bible study. If the principles of the restoration are to continue we must revive the spirit of Bible investigation. If we fail the results will be apostasy.

There is a great unrest and confusion in the church today. The problems are many and varied. All kinds of solutions are being offered and many of the solutions are dealing with symptoms rather than the disease. The only cure is a return to a diligent study of the scriptures. The longer we fail to recognize this the more our problems are going to increase. Too much emphasis is being placed on academic learning and too little on scripture knowledge. A degree does not assure Bible knowledge. One may have a degree and Bible knowledge but the degree is not the sign of Bible knowledge. When elders are considering a preacher today, his knowledge of the Bible is often the last thing considered. This is having its effect in the pew. If it is not vital for a preacher to know the Bible, why expect others to be interested? It is frightening to think of the numbers in the church that do not know how to study the Bible. I think we have assumed that the preceding generation taught these things so well that there is no need to teach them today.

While we have been looking for something new to preach we have neglected some fundamental things that must be taught. I plan to write some articles about Bible study that I trust will encourage and enable the readers to become Bible students. If you will learn these principles and apply them you will not have to depend on someone else to do your Bible study.

Do Not Get Discouraged

I offer this first because if one gets discouraged and stops studying none of the other principles will be of any value. When one begins the study of the Bible the tendency is to get discouraged because the study of the Bible is not a crypt course. If one walked into a library and looked at all the books on the shelves it would be easy to say, I can never learn what is in these books. The fact that there is so much information contained in all the books is no excuse for not selecting a book and beginning to increase your knowledge. Do not expect to learn all there is in a few months, but do not let this keep you from beginning and continuing. One will never learn all there is to know but one can learn enough to save the soul.

The Measure of Your Interest in God

A second principle to remember is that your interest in the Bible is the measure of your interest in God and your soul. No one has more interest in God and his soul than that which can be measured by his interest shown by personal study of the Bible. The Bible is the only text book on God and man. It is the only source of the knowledge of God. One can only know God through the Bible:

"But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." (1 Corinthians 2:9-14, KJV)

Paul's natural man is not the sinner that cannot understand the Bible without a direct operation of the Spirit. He is the man without revelation or that rejects revelation. The evolutionist is an example of the natural man. God is not known through science. Measured by your interest in the Bible, how interested are you in God and your soul? Do you study: none, little, daily, seldom?

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