In lieu of beginning a new book study today, we’re announcing an upcoming change for Time With God. Since its inception in February 2012, Time With God has sent over 1,800 devotions (covering 40 books of the Bible and eight topical series) to over 2,400 subscribers in various countries. What an amazing effort from a fluctuating team of 135 writers!
Last fall, Time With God completed our study of the New Testament books (except Revelation, which would be difficult to fully study in our brief format). To date, Time With God has also studied a significant portion of the Old Testament (again, except for certain books which would be challenging to cover well in our format).
As we considered the ground we’ve covered at Time With God, and after much prayer and discussion of our options going forward, we have decided to bring new writing to a close. However, we are confident that God will continue to use Time With God as a resource for Bible study. We hope that, in the near future, Time With God will become an online, cataloged resource, or that it will reboot from its very beginning, being sent out daily to subscribers once again. In the meantime, we want you, our faithful readers, to know that we are pressing an extended pause as we prepare and consider how Time With God will venture forward.
Throughout the rest of this week, we will continue sending our daily Time With God devotions and do what we’ve done faithfully for the last seven years—offering you an opportunity to connect with God through the study of Scripture and prayer. Our study this week will center upon the value of God’s Word—specifically, why and how we study it. At the end of the week, we will also include a list of resources directing you to other helpful options for daily Bible study.
As we end this particular season of Time With God, know what a humbling privilege it has been for our team of writers to journey through Scripture alongside you. What an incredible blessing that God has allowed us to do HIS theology in THIS community!
As I type this, I have twelve different translations of Scripture shelved nearby. From Hebrew and Greek translations to the more conversational adaptation of The Message, I have the privilege of personally being able to encounter God’s Word in a number of easily accessible ways. (And this doesn’t even include the copies of the Bible I can peruse with a click on my computer!) I must admit, though, I am rarely spent with wonder that these volumes of sacred writings are at my disposal. The accumulated dust on many of my Bibles attests to the somber fact that some are rarely even examined.
I wonder how many of us often take for granted the value of what we’ve been given in the Bible? How many of us go through stretches of days without inviting God, through his Scripture, to search and penetrate our hearts?
Read the Word
2 Timothy 3:16-17 (ESV)
16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
- Take a few minutes to ponder what verse 16 says about the whole of Scripture. What five things do we learn about the Bible?
- God specifically wanted us to know that Scripture is “breathed out” (inspired) by him. What does this communicate about its authority?
- We are taught, reproved (rebuked and exposed), corrected (restored or improved), and educated in righteousness by Scripture. As you consider your relationship with God, which of these do you find yourself most in need of currently?
- What is the purpose of submitting ourselves to God’s inspired Word (vs. 17)?
- If God’s Word is foundational in your relationship with him, then what keeps you from studying it?
Respond to God
If I were to describe these two verses, I might say, “It’s what the Bible says … about the Bible.” Or better yet, “It’s what God says about his words.” If we learn anything from these verses, it is that the importance of Scripture can never be devalued. It is from him and for our good. In it, we have access to the divinely-inspired meditations of God. Just sit with that thought for a moment.
In studying the Sacred, we invite the Sacred to study us. This pursuit feels vulnerable—and from God’s own words in 2 Timothy, it seems it was designed by him to be so. He alone has the power to teach, reprove, correct, and train. And one way he chooses to do this in us happens as we study his inspired words.
Only one thing then remains: Will you and I keep the dust off our Bibles and invite him to do so?
- Praise God for his inspired Scripture and for giving you access to it.
- As you study the words in your Bible today, ask him to teach, reprove, correct, and train you.