Skip to comments.A Practical Help for Bible Study
Posted on 06/02/2014 6:30:41 PM PDT by Gamecock
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16)
After stating that the Bible is God-breathed, Paul spelled out its purpose and value. Scripture, he said, is profitable for several things, including doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness.
The value of the Bible lies, first of all, in the fact that it teaches sound doctrine. Though we live in a time when sound teaching is denigrated, the Bible places a high value on it. Much of the New Testament is concerned with doctrine. The teaching ministry is given to the church for building up its people. Paul said, “And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ” (Eph. 4:11–12).
The Bible is also profitable for reproof and correction, which we as Christians continually need. It is fashionable in some academic circles to exercise scholarly criticism of the Bible. In so doing, scholars place themselves above the Bible and seek to correct it. If indeed the Bible is the Word of God, nothing could be more arrogant. It is God who corrects us; we don’t correct Him. We do not stand over God but under Him.
This yields a practical help for Bible study: read the Bible with a red pen in hand. I suggest that you put a question mark in the margin beside every passage that you find unclear or hard to understand. Likewise, put an X beside every passage that offends you or makes you uncomfortable. Afterward, you can focus on the areas you struggle with, especially the texts marked with an X. This can be a guide to holiness, as the Xs show us quickly where our thinking is out of line with the mind of Christ. If I don’t like something I read in Scripture, perhaps I simply don’t understand it. If so, studying it again may help. If, in fact, I do understand the passage and still don’t like it, this is not an indication there is something wrong with the Bible. It’s an indication that something is wrong with me, something that needs to change. Often, before we can get something right, we need to first discover what we’re doing wrong.
When we experience the “changing of the mind” that is repentance, we are not suddenly cleansed of all wrong thinking. The renewing of our minds is a lifelong process. We can accelerate this process by focusing on those passages of Scripture that we don’t like. This is part of the “instruction in righteousness” of which Paul speaks.
Finally, Paul explained the overriding purpose for Scripture study. It comes in the final clause, where the apostle wrote, “… that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” It was as if Paul was warning Timothy that if he neglected the study of God’s Word, his life would be incomplete. He would be missing out on this vast resource, this treasury of truth that is the Word of God. And the same is true for us.
This excerpt is from R.C. Sproul’s Five Things Every Christian Needs to Grow. Download the ebook free through June 30, 2014.
5, 4, 3, 2....
Except there was NO Bible...in your quote? Paul couldn’t have read the bible it didn’t exist...
we had to wait for Spurgeon... so only he could interpret the BIBLE there was no authority before him!
I looked and looked but I couldn’t find any of his writings in 1st 2nd 3rd or even 4th century..hmm 19th century I read some stuff but nothing Earlier? How strange..hmmm
I always liked RC Sproul, Dawson Trotman, Bill Bright, Charles Stanley, Chuck Smith, Hal Lindsey, Josh McDowell, Raul Ruiz, Franklin Graham, John MacArthur, ( a distant relative of General MacArthur) Robert Cook, J Vernon McGhee and John R Rice, to name a few.
Sproul is an excellent teacher.
I give up. Uncle...
Good luck. It should be rather interesting.
Has Sproul ever studied or taught on our Heavenly Father’s calendar that stands opposite of the pope gregory calendar the entire world follows today?
Can't remember what the last 'P' is for.
Probably not. I'm sure he has more important things on his mind than worrying over if he's in dutch with the Lord, because the calendar he writes his appointments on has the little squares arranged improperly.
It certainly is not a significant source of existential anxiety on my part.
Your last beer?
Paul says Scripture is PROFITABLE, not just adequate.
It goes way beyond just being enough, with other things being added or needed.
Sure. The OT that the Jews had doesn't count as Scripture for some folks I guess.
The quote doesn't say *Bible*, it says *Scripture*, which of course, the Jews had and Paul was intimately familiar with.
LOL!!! (and you just barely made it in)
The Catholic Church TODAY uses the same Old testament scripture as the Apostles since they were Catholics since it was formalized in 70 AD in GREEK.
I hope that helps...
It wasn’t for me either, but when I was really studying this mary nonsense and the rosary, it dawned on me that the greco roman latin mother church foundation has set up the premises that the entire world follows and there are givens that even protestants wouldn’t argue with...
The calendar, the sabbath days for every religion, and the man made holy days...
All of those stand as substitutes for what scripture says..
I was just curious if he had written anything about it...
I know in one of my study bibles it was plain that some of the first reformers knew exactly what the papacy was all about back then...