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HOW TO USE THE BIBLE.pdf

HOW TO USE THE BIBLE.pdf

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Published by glennpease
BY J. R. MILLER




JUST how to use the Bible
so as to get from it the
help it has to give, per-
plexes many good people.
Some have an almost su-
perstitious regard for the
book. They think it will ward off dangers and
bring blessings. Many a soldier, as he enters
a battle, throws away his pack of cards and
puts a New Testament in his pocket and then
feels safer. Some people suppose the Bible
will answer their questions and mark out their
duty for them in a mechanical, though an in-
fallible, way. So when they have some serious
problem which they cannot solve they open
the book at random and put their finger on
a verse with their eyes closed, and take
that verse as containing an inspired direc-
tion. But in no such way does the Bible offer
to help us.
BY J. R. MILLER




JUST how to use the Bible
so as to get from it the
help it has to give, per-
plexes many good people.
Some have an almost su-
perstitious regard for the
book. They think it will ward off dangers and
bring blessings. Many a soldier, as he enters
a battle, throws away his pack of cards and
puts a New Testament in his pocket and then
feels safer. Some people suppose the Bible
will answer their questions and mark out their
duty for them in a mechanical, though an in-
fallible, way. So when they have some serious
problem which they cannot solve they open
the book at random and put their finger on
a verse with their eyes closed, and take
that verse as containing an inspired direc-
tion. But in no such way does the Bible offer
to help us.

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Published by: glennpease on Nov 06, 2013
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HOW TO USE THE BIBLEBY J. R. MILLER JUST how to use the Bibleso as to get from it thehelp it has to give, per-plexes many good people.Some have an almost su-perstitious regard for thebook. They think it will ward off dangers andbring blessings. Many a soldier, as he entersa battle, throws away his pack of cards andputs a New Testament in his pocket and thenfeels safer. Some people suppose the Biblewill answer their questions and mark out theirduty for them in a mechanical, though an in-fallible, way. So when they have some seriousproblem which they cannot solve they openthe book at random and put their finger ona verse with their eyes closed, and takethat verse as containing an inspired direc-tion. But in no such way does the Bible offerto help us. It is not a fetich.[185]a i^eatt c0arDenIt is meant to be a book of life to us, but il:must be used intelligently. It helps us fromwithin, not from without. In one place we arcexhorted to let the word of Christ dwell inus. The word of Christ consists primarily of 
 
all the very sayings of Christ which are pre-served for us in the Gospels. There are notmany of these — we can read them all in a lit-tle while. But they are the most wonderfulwords ever spoken. Then in a wider sense theword of Christ includes all divine revelations.The Bible is a marvellous book. It containslofty, spiritual teachings which are meantto change earth's wilderness into a heavenlygarden.The word of Christ does its work from v/ithin.Hence it must get into ou^Jieart and we mustlet it dwell in us. We can shut it out if wewill. It cannot enter into our life unless welet it enter, nor will it stay with us unless itis hospitably entertained. It will not do any-thing for us either if we keep it out. A Biblelying on our table will not make known tous any of the wonderful revealings it con-[186]'€.)^t TdiUt in tilttains — we must receive its words into ourheart.A great deal of advice has been given inbooks and sermons concerning the best way tostudy the Bible. The fact is, however, thatnot many people do study it. Many readbooks about the Bible, but not all of theseread the Bible itself. Many know a few brightand great verses, but know nothing about thebook as a whole. They find a little gardenspot here and there and visit it now and then,
 
breathing the fragrance of the flowers andeating the fruits they find there, while thevast continent of the Scriptures lies unex-plored beyond. If we read any other book asmost people read the Bible we should neverknow much of literature. The Bible shouldbe studied intelligently. It should be studiedthoroughly, for every portion of it is profit-able for instruction, for correction, for com-fort, for help.If the word of Christ is allowed to dwell inus richly, what will be its effect on our every-day life ? For one thing, it will transform our[187]a 1$tavt (3avUncharacter. The word of God is a lamp. Wher-ever it shines it reveals the flecks, the flaws,the blemishes, the wrong things in hearts andhves. It shows us our selfishness, our envy,our jealousy, our lack of love, our doubts,our inconsistencies. Ruskin tells us we shouldcount ourselves happy the day we discover anew fault in our life or character — not happybecause the fault is there, but because we havediscovered it, that we may rid ourselves of it.Where the word of Christ dwells it revealsfaults and cleanses.But cleansing is not enough. It is not enoughnot to do sinful things. Religion is not madeup of negatives and " thou shalt nots." Jesussays that His words are spirit and life. Theyare like seeds, seeds gathered from heavenly

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