Value of Bible Study
is God's great text-book for man. It is His lamp to our feet and light
to our path in this world of sin. The value of Bible study cannot,
therefore be overestimated.
Considered from a literary standpoint alone, the Bible stands
preeminent. Its terse, chaste style; its beautiful and impressive
imagery; its interesting stories and well-told narratives; its deep
wisdom and its sound logic; its dignified language and its elevated
themes, all make it worthy of universal reading and careful study.
As an educating power, the Bible has no equal. Nothing so broadens the
vision, strengthens the mind, elevates the thoughts, and ennobles the
affections as does the study of the sublime and stupendous truths of
revelation. A knowledge of its principles is an essential preparation to
every calling. To the extent that it is studied and its teachings are
received, it gives strength of character, noble ambition, keenness of
perception, and sound judgment. Of all the books ever written, none
contains lessons so instructive, precepts so pure, or promises so great
as the Bible.
There is nothing that so convinces the mind of the inspiration of the
Bible as does the reading of the Bible itself, and especially those
portions known as the prophecies. After the resurrection of Christ, when
everything else seemed to have failed to convince the disciples that He
had risen from the dead,
He appealed to the inspired Word, and
"expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself
" (Luke 24:25-27), and they believed. On another occasion He said, "If
they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded,
though one rose from the dead." Luke 16:31.
As a guide, the Bible is without a rival. It gives a calm peace in
believing, and a firm hope of the future. It solves the great problem of
life and destiny, and inspires to a life of purity, patience, and
well-doing. It fills the heart with love for God and a desire to do good
to others, and thus prepares for usefulness here and for a home in
heaven. It teaches the value of the soul, by revealing the price that
has been paid to redeem it. It makes known the only antidote for sin,
and presents the only perfect code of morals ever given. It tells of the
future and the preparation necessary to meet it. It makes us bold for
the right, and sustains the soul in adversity and affliction. It lights
up the dark valley of death, and points to a life unending. It leads to
God, and to Christ, whom to know is life eternal. In short, it is the
one book to live by and die by.
As the king of Israel was instructed to write him a copy of the law, and
to read therein "all the days of his life," that he might "fear the
Lord," keep His word, and thus prolong his days and the days of his
children (Deut. 17:18-20) , so ought men now to study the Bible, and
from it learn that fear which is the beginning of wisdom, and that
knowledge which is unto salvation. As an aid and incentive to this,
"Bible Readings for the Home Circle" has been prepared and
Readings; Their Value and Use
stated, a Bible reading consists of questions asked concerning some
subject, and answers to them from the Bible. In other words, Bible
readings mean a topical study of the Bible by means of questions and
In either receiving or imparting knowledge, there is nothing like the
interrogation-point. Nothing so readily quickens thought or awakens
interest as a question. Children would learn little if they asked no
questions, and he would indeed be a poor teacher who asked and answered
Knowing the value of this means of awakening thought, arousing interest,
and imparting information, God, in His wisdom, inspired those who wrote
the Bible to ask many questions, that He might set us to thinking and
studying about the great themes with which it deals. See Job 38:4,7;
14:14; Ps. 8:4; Mal. 3:1,2,8; Ex. 32:26; 1 Chron. 29:5.
But God not only asks questions; He answers them. The
following may be
cited as a few short Bible readings, taken, both questions and answers,
directly from the Bible itself:-
"What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may
"Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart
from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it." Ps. 34:12-14.
"Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling?
who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes?
"They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine."
"Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? or who shall stand in His
"He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his
soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing
from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation." Ps.
24:3-5. See also Psalm 15 and Isa. 33:14-17.
The Bible itself, therefore, sets the example of giving instruction and
of imparting most valuable information by means of asking questions and
The readings in this book as originally prepared were contributed by a
large number of Bible workers, whose experience in giving Bible readings
had taught them the most effective methods of presenting the different
subjects treated. Over one million two hundred and fifty thousand copies
of the book as thus prepared have been sold. [as of 1914]
The work has recently been thoroughly revised and rewritten, much
enlarged, entirely reillustrated, with the readings classified and
carefully arranged according to topics, by a large committee of able
critics and Bible students. So extensive has been the revision, and so
much and valuable the new matter added, that the present work is
practically a new book, although retaining the same name and the same
general plan as the former work. Thus prepared, it is once more sent
forth on its mission of light and blessing.
As a help in enabling the reader quickly to discover the words which
most directly answer the question asked, they are generally printed in
italic, unless the entire scripture quoted is required for the purpose.
"Bible Readings" will be found an excellent aid to private, family, and
public study of the Word of God.
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