Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Connoisseur of the Word


The Big Idea: Sometimes we read the Bible like we take out fast food, and occasionally have a good feast. It's OK. Just don't live only on fast food. 

Happy Meal Bible Readings

Did you hear about the guy who ate McDonalds only, every day for ten days? It was a science experiment for his dad, a professor. After about three days he started turning gray and feeling awful. It was not a good plan for his health and well being.

The nice thing about fast food is that it is so easy. Go through the drive through. Ready-to-eat meals are a big part of grocery store business now compared to fifty years ago. Of course for a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, as a mom and hostess I can slave over a meal for five hours and it is consumed in about fifteen minutes. It doesn't seem right somehow. Yet you probably agree the home cooked meal is so much better for you than eating convenient pre-packaged meals all the time.



Have you ever thought about how studying the Bible is like the way we eat food? Jesus quoted the Old Testament where it states:

"People do not live by bread alone; rather, we live by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord." Deuteronomy 8:3b

We live by the Word of God. It is our sustenance as a Christian. If you read your Bible regularly, day by day, it will help you grow in your faith. Would you give your child nothing to eat for days on end? No, of course not. Why not? It is not good for their health and stamina. In the same way, we must take in God's Word every day for our spiritual health and stamina.

At times it is useful to grab a quick meal. At times we need a good solid meal of healthy food. In the same way, it is okay to grab a quick ready-made spiritual meal, such as a short devotional guide. These quick sources of spiritual food we grab are not bad in themselves. In fact, it is so much better to get in the Bible even in these devotionals But after awhile, it will do little more than sustain you. If you want to grow, you need a more meaty diet!


The New Testament writers liken the Bible to spiritual milk for the new Christian.

Peter the Apostle: "Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment." I Peter 2:2

Paul the Apostle: "I had to feed you with milk, not with solid food, because you weren’t ready for anything stronger. And you still aren’t ready." I Corinthians 3:2

Hebrews author: "You need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food." Hebrews 5:12

Perhaps you can read what I surmise in these verses, that milk is good for a child, but eventually if you want to grow you need to add solid food.


If you stop to think about it, the weekly sermon is like a carefully made meal our pastor makes for us to spiritually consume. It is fine teaching and good for us spiritually. You can read books about what the Bible says about one subject or some theme relevant to your life. Great! I applaud your efforts to learn more about the Bible and your Christian walk! There is a lot of great stuff out there.

However, I would plead with you to learn to take in God's Word for yourself. It is like learning to prepare your own well balanced meals. There is a place for using a devotional guide for a daily quiet time with God. There is a place for reading good books on the Christian life. But please learn to study and apply God's Word on your own, trusting the Holy Spirit to lead you and guide you.



Learn the recipes for Bible study. Examine the Word and dig in! There are many tools and methods to do this. I decided to create this blog, Scripture Spy, to teach people how to investigate and explore God's Word on their own. This blog site has a lot of different ideas. Try checking it in the magazine view. You will also see the information in blog posts organized at my website,

This year I plan to systematically present a variety of ways to study the Bible in personal Bible study. There are times when one method resonates more than another. An example is a character study; what the Bible says about a Biblical character. Another example is a survey of a book of the Bible as a book study. There are numerous others such as a thematic study, a chapter by chapter method, and other styles to try. You may find one works best for you or you may want to insert some variety once in awhile.

We all realize we should not eat a big Thanksgiving meal every single day. But we do need food every single day. Likewise there are times when we need to grab the quick morning bite in the Word of God and save an hour of deep Bible study for later in the week. What needs to happen? Be intentional about getting into God's Word.

"Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do." Joshua 1:8

Let's Eat!


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1. Do you have any regular time in the Bible? If not, how might you start incorporating that into your routine? Do you have a devotional you could start using? There are many available on You Version.

2. Are you at a point in your Christian life when it’s time to add more substance to your study of the Bible? Pray about how to do that. Is there a Bible study in your church or community you could join?

3. How do you feel about studying the Bible for yourself? If you’re willing to try, how might you begin? Be sure to check my Scripture Spy website for ideas.

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