All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
Why would you read the Bible?
Isn’t the Bible just an ancient book of myths, totally outdated, and completely out of touch with modern society? Many people feel that way.
Other people view it as a dangerous book. Totalitarian governments realize that they lose their control over people who read and believe the Bible. So they try to minimize the presence of Bibles in their country.
Still others pay little attention to the Bible. They aren’t interested in religion or philosophy. They may tolerate people who try to follow the Bible’s teachings, but they want nothing to do with it for themselves.
The Bible has been misused, misinterpreted, and misunderstood by many people during the last several millennia. Theologians and governments have used the Bible to justify genocides, wars, massacres, persecutions, and inquisitions. But despite the attempts of churches and governments to minimize it or misuse it, the Bible has influenced the world dramatically for thousands of years. When you study the Bible, you can see that such actions are totally incompatible with the Bible’s teachings.
Why should you read the Bible? It has a timeless message—a message from God to you. If the world would read the Bible and would practice its teachings the way God intended, life would be much better for everyone.
What does the Bible teach?
The Bible teaches us all of the following and more:
- To love each other (John 13:34, 35)
- To return good for evil (Matthew 5:38-48)
- To repent of our sins and change our life (Acts 26:20)
- To treat others the way we want to be treated (Matthew 7:12)
- To love our enemies (Matthew 5:44)
- To forgive those who wrong us (Matthew 6:14, 15)
- Not to hoard money and belongings on earth, so that we can have “treasure” in heaven (Matthew 6:19-21)
- To share with those in need (Matthew 25:34-40)
Many of these teachings are found in the Sermon on the Mount (see Matthew 5-7). But Jesus often taught about how to relate to others.
The Bible also teaches us about sin and the harm it does to us and those around us. Sin bars us from heaven. Sin also keeps us from finding happiness and fulfillment in life. The Bible not only teaches us about these things, but it also teaches us how to be set free from the bondage of sin. [See: Jesus can set you free]
Read the Gospels
The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are the foundation of the New Testament and are found at the beginning of the New Testament. Read all four, starting at Matthew, to get the whole picture. They will introduce you to Jesus, God’s Son. They will show you His teachings and His actions. They will help you to understand God better as you understand His Son better.
The Gospels will also show you how Jesus died for you, so that you could be saved from your sins. And they will show you how He rose from the dead, despite the feeble attempts of His enemies to keep Him in the grave.