Outside of the Bible, what is your favorite book?
What if, as you read that book, the author was sitting beside you to answer any questions you may have and help you understand their work? No doubt, you would get more from your reading.
When a believer reads Scripture, the author of the book is not sitting beside you, rather, He is inside you. Who better to be our teacher?
How can we develop an insatiable hunger for reading the Bible? There are three important truths to consider.
When we read God’s Word, the Holy Spirit is eager to teach us.
1. Acknowledge the Holy Spirit as our teacher.
When the Spirit-filled follower of Christ reads their Bible, the Holy Spirit speaks directly to your heart and mind. As you study, He is ready to answer any questions and help you understand the Word to transform every believer into the image of Christ. His goal is for believers to use this instruction to love God and live their lives according to His teaching.
2. Allow the Holy Spirit to do His work.
Before we can truly begin loving God and His Word, believers need to understand the Holy Spirit’s role and our proper response to His work in our lives.
To be filled, there must be a desire to be filled. Jesus said those who thirst or hunger will be filled (Matthew 5:6; John 7:37). Does this describe you? Are you thirsty – maybe a little desperate? Jesus said that when the Holy Spirit controls you, you will have a hunger and a thirst to know God and grow in Him.
To be filled, you must confess and turn from all the known sin in your life. Confession of sin is critical. We have to say, “God, if there is any sin in my life, if there’s something I’m doing that isn’t pleasing to You, put Your finger on it.” We need to say to the Lord, “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me…” (Psalm 139:23-24).
The filling of the Holy Spirit requires surrender. Surrender is more than saying, “I will rededicate my life” or “I will be committed.” When we rededicate or commit to the Lord, we name the terms of our actions. When we surrender, we let Him set the terms. Surrender is a word on an entirely different level.
3. Let the Word give you delight and joy.
When we read God’s Word, the Holy Spirit is eager to teach us. However, it is our responsibility to allow the Holy Spirit to do the necessary work in our hearts and lives so that we can receive His teaching. Once we have confessed our sins and surrendered to Him, we have positioned ourselves to hear from the very heart of God.
As the Spirit teaches, we learn God’s truth and He increases our understanding. When we give ourselves to this process, we see God more clearly and naturally fall more in love with Him. This should lead us to say along with Jeremiah, “Your words were found, and I ate them. Your words became a delight to me and the joy of my heart, for I bear your name, Lord God of Armies” (Jeremiah 15:16).