I sold life insurance for several years right after I finished school. I soon learned that it wasn’t an easy job. When you think about it, it is more accurate to call it death insurance. The problem is who wants to not only think about their own death but also pay out money, knowing they will never experience a benefit from that investment?
To overcome those issues, I was trained to focus on the owner benefits, or “OBs” as we called them. For example, there is the benefit of a peaceful mind, knowing that my loved ones will have what they need when I am no longer able to provide for them.
That memory made me think about learning the Bible. We know it takes time and effort to read and study it. We might read the Bible just because we know that we should do it, but consistent study is more likely to happen if we think about the “OBs” of Bible study.
A follower of the Lord can know for sure that the Bible “… is perfect, restoring the soul; … is sure, making wise the simple…. [is] right, rejoicing the heart… is pure, enlightening the eyes” (Psalm 19:7–8). Just knowing that the Bible is true, though, doesn’t necessarily give us the motivation we need to spend our energy to understand the Bible.
The first step is crucial. Loving the Bible starts when we repent of our sinfulness and trust in what Jesus did to pay for it and to cover us with His perfect righteousness. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverbs 1:7). “[God the Father] made [Jesus]who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in [Christ]” (2 Corinthians 5:21).
Here are some wonderful benefits (“OBs”) believers can look forward to when they put out the effort to learn more about the Bible.
- Loving the Bible Keeps us from Pride and A
Just understanding facts about the Bible is not enough. We need to see God’s greatness and our neediness. Humility does not come naturally to any of us. Bible knowledge, even accurate Bible knowledge, by itself doesn’t increase our love for the Lord. That knowledge is worthless “…. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies” (1 Corinthians 8:1).
“If I have…all knowledge…but do not have love, I am nothing” (1 Corinthians 13:2).
- Loving the Bible Leads Us to be in Awe of God
It was through his suffering that God taught Job to be in awe of Him. Job wound up admitting, “… I have declared that which I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know” (Job 42:3).
King David put it this way, “You have enclosed me behind and before and laid Your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is too high; I cannot attain to it” (Psalm 139:5–6).
- Loving the Bible Increases our Appetite to Learn More about the Bible
As you taste more sweetness from God’s Word, you will have a passion to learn more. “…The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether. They are more desirable than gold, yes than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb.” (Psalm 19:9–10).
- Loving the Bible Highlights Christ’s Glory
Humble learners only boast about what Jesus has done to save them. “For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified” (1 Corinthians 2:2). “But may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.” (Galatians 6:14).
- Loving the Bible Makes God’s Presence Real
“Yet they seek Me day by day and delight to know My ways… They ask Me for just decisions, they delight in the nearness of God.” (Isaiah 58:2).
- Loving the Bible Shows us How to Make Wise and Positive Decisions in our Daily L
“Teach me good discernment and knowledge, for I believe in Your commandments” (Psalm 119:66).
- Loving the Bible Keeps us Accountable to God
Be warned: the more Bible you know, the more God will expect from you. “… Everyone who has been given much, much will be required…” (Luke 12:48).
“Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment” (James 3:1).
Do these benefits appeal to you? Does your heart cry out to God, “Your Word is very pure, therefore your servant loves it” (Psalm 119:140)? If you don’t have a love for God’s Word, consider what the reason might be. Could it be that He hasn’t changed you and made you new on the inside?
Loving the Bible is NOT natural, but the new birth makes it possible.
When you surrender your life to Jesus, you will be … born again … through the living and enduring word of God” (1 Peter 1:23). Then you will start loving to learn the Bible.