Investing in my family with the riches of God’s Word- now this something worth every silver dollar we own (Proverbs 2). The spiritual capital of accumulating God’s Word in our hearts is a fundamental family worship activity. And reading the Bible is key. Psalm 119:11 states:
I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.
I received a Bible as a Christmas gift from parents in the 80s.. My dad wrote a note in it that said the following:
May God bless your reading of His precious Word. Remember that this Book will keep you from sin, and sin will keep you from this Book. Our prayer is that the Scriptures will be a lamp unto your feet and a light unto your path. Lovingly, Mom and Dad (Christmas, 1984)
As mentioned in another post, my Dad influenced me to see the importance of reading the Bible. I would often see him read it for his morning devotions. He would also lead our family worship nearly every night. And now with this Christmas gift, he was re-enforcing the importance of storing up God’s Word.
Now, this legacy for Bible reading is a goal to leave for my family. I seek to do this in my daily Bible reading with a read through the Bible method. Through my example, albeit imperfect, I hope my children will also grasp the importance of private reading. Likewise, in my church, much Bible reading is included in the worship service, once again strengthening the value of God’s Word in our lives.
So how does this relate to family worship?
Are there benefits for Bible reading with the family as well? Here I include three.
[tweet_box design=”default”]We are learning how to live together as a family.[/tweet_box] 1. How do we encourage one another? How do we deal with challenges? Sinful behaviors? Hurt relationships? How do we learn to forgive one another and bring healing? Through Bible reading we can talk about these subjects in everyday life. Bible reading, therefore, sets the trajectory of how we should live. Joshua says it well: “But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD” (Joshua 24:15). Bible reading isn’t just occasional. It’s daily. Habitual. It’s life directing. Family Bible reading takes Paul’s admonition to Timothy seriously: “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 competent, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). I like the words of John Tweeddale who states: One of the primary purposes of the home is to cultivate Christlike virtues that animate who we are in private and facilitate what we do in public. [http://www.ligonier.org/learn/articles/worldview-at-home/]
[tweet_box design=”default”]Family Bible reading prepares our hearts for Sunday worship.[/tweet_box] 2. Dad and mom- attentive to God’s Word at home- prepare the children’s hearts (and their own) to hear attentively God’s Word as it is read and preached. Everyday that the Word is read and briefly discussed in the home, it makes the Bible a bit more familiar to our ears on Sunday from the pulpit. Jesus says good things about hearing with faith. “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it! Prayerfully, then, frequent consumption in the milk of the Word prepares us to consume the spiritual meat of each Lord’s Day (1 Corinthians 3:2). One recommended resource on the spiritual discipline of reading and hearing God’s Word is Dr. Donald Whitney’s book, Spiritual Disciplines For the Christian Life.
[tweet_box design=”default”]Family Bible reading is a time for enjoying God’s grace.[/tweet_box] 3. We learn that we are saved by God’s grace from our sins as we trust in Him (Romans 6:23). The Apostle Peter declares that we are “born again…through the Word of God with lives and abides forever” (1 Peter 1:23). We realize because of God’s grace- even during a bad day- we are doing better than we deserve. [https://www.daveramsey.com/blog/better-than-i-deserve] This is true in sickness, even at death. God’s grace and blessing is upon us- not something dreamt or imagined. It is a reality that God’s Word confirms (Romans 8:28).
Recently one of my daughters celebrated her golden birthday. My wife and I wondered a bit longer than usual what appropriate gift would serve this special celebration Our choice? A study Bible. And, yes, I will also write some encouraging words as my father scripted in mine about God’s blessings for Bible reading.
What other benefits are there for you in reading God’s Word often?
What are the challenges in reading the Word of God together as a family?