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Why We Study the Bible

2016.02.10 Joseph study guide

I was raised in the church and, looking back, I took a lot of things for granted and sometimes even resented. Every morning at breakfast, my dad opened his bible and read from a little white book called Our Daily Bread. The bible was the first thing I heard every morning. Unfortunately, I didn’t understand why the bible was important or why I needed to read it.

Looking back over the early years of my Christian journey, I realized that I was young and immature. I needed to learn a lot about God and the spiritual discipline of reading his word. I knew that reading my bible was a good thing but struggled to be consistent. The problem was that I viewed God as an addition to my life, keeping myself at the center. I didn’t realize that the bible wasn’t an assistant to my old way of life, but the doorway into my new life in Christ.

About seven years ago, I studied Romans with a friend. I considered myself a theological novice. I wrestled with passages that seemed confusing and found myself wanting to give up. One day when we were discussing the text, I had a light bulb moment where something challenging made sense. I actually said, “Theology is fun!” I’ll never forget his response. He said, "Our discovery of the depths of God should stir our affections for him." From then on, I saw the power of scripture in a new light.

The reason we study God’s word is because it tells us about God. God wants to reveal himself to us, and we study scripture so that we can know God more. Once we understand that the bible is ultimately about Jesus, the redemptive story about God who invites sinners to lay down their lives in order to be given new ones, the bible begins to carry much more weight. As our knowledge of God increases so do our affections for Him.

This is an exciting time at Providence Church. We recently finished studying the book of Romans and are currently looking at the life of Joseph. The story of Joseph is fascinating, filled with such unbelievable twists and turns that you might think it would make an interesting movie. As we unpack Genesis 37-50, we’ll see lots of similarities between the lives of Joseph and Jesus. Both experienced unjust suffering and betrayal, and their hardships resulted in saved lives. Joseph’s work preserved people’s physical lives a little longer, but Christ saves for eternity. We will learn that what man meant for evil, God ultimately redeems for good.

This is the journey we are inviting you into. I encourage you to spend the next seven weeks consistently reading God’s word. Whether or not regular study of the bible is part of your life, you will be blessed by spending time in God’s word.

Providence has created a seven-week study guide that follows along with the sermon series of Joseph. The study guide is a helpful resource for you to use while reading the text. Download the study guide here!