If you want to be worded, please feel free to study scriptures without reading the whole Bible. Just go for Greek and Hebrew, you know, katakrino, epiginosko, hasedagape, and so on. Very soon you will be a rhemified wordsmith and bible teacher extraordinare.
Listeners will slap their laps as you tear them word, shouting Shanda! Yes Sir!! Preach it!! And several tonguings like Zualakate and so on
BUT if you want to live the Christ-Life, you have to read the Book. I maintain that it takes the whole Bible to make a whole Christian. It takes the whole Bible to make a healthy church. The whole Bible is the Christian doctrine.
Three times the devil tempted the Lord in the days of His flesh, and not once did He say “the greek word for stone is ajeokuta mamomi” or “the context of that verse you quoted in the greek is not jump but glide…”. Mba. He simply replied “It is written..” or “It is also written”
Not once did He say, that is Jesus; “Have you not studied the rhema of this or that?” Rara. He said “Have you never READ…”
Both reading and studying are important, but reading comes first. Reading is fundamental to studying. Paul did not only write to Timothy saying “Study to show yourself a workman who rightly divides the word of truth.” He first said to him “Give attention to reading.”
Before you can specialise in advanced calculus or space geometry, you have to do mathematics at a basic level. Before you can read books and write poems, you have to learn A to Z. Before you become a specialist in any area, you need a foundation in the general knowledge of that field.
No one gets into school and starts learning obstetrics or heart surgery. No. You will learn nonsense. First you have to know about the whole human body – how it is structured and how it works; then later you can focus on the heart. The whole Bible is one message. Reading the whole is the proper macro-context for studying any part.
You know, a doctor can look at someone’s feet and know that there is a big problem with their heart. He or she will treat the heart and both the heart and feet will be fine.
Another person who never studied medicine but calls themselves a foot specialist will see the same feet and start massaging it, making marks on it, and applying all kinds of substances until the person dies.
That’s why we have so many dead doctrines that massage the itching ears of some but do nothing for their hearts. It is because the teachers are trying to explain Paul’s algebra but they don’t know Isaiah’s arithmetics. They cannot count 1 to 100 but are trying to solve (yx + 2xy – y)/(x – 1) = 12.
Jesus said to the Jews “If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But if you do not believe what he wrote, how will you believe what I say?” When He explained the gospel to His disciples, He began with the writings of Moses and went through all the prophets.
Some of you don’t know how to pray with the understanding at all, because you have never really read the Psalms. Eugene Peterson, the author of The Message Translation said the Psalms are the prayer language of the church. That book is an anatomy of all kinds of prayers; whether intercessory, supplication, warfare or others. Jesus on the Cross prayed with the words of the Psalms. The apostles in Acts 4 prayed from Psalms 2.
Some of you want to be deep worshippers and worship leaders but you don’t know the Bible. Don Moen sang “You make me lie down in green pastures (Psalm 23)”; “He never sleeps (Psalm 121)”; “God is the strength of my heart (Psalm 73)”. Ron kenoly sang “The Lord be magnified (Psalm 40)”; Ancient of Days (Daniel 7) and so on. Nathaniel Bassey sang “Your name is a strong tower (Proverbs 18)”, Casting Crowns and Book of Life (Revelation)
But you want to be doing deep spiritual chants and you think it’s only when you do unknown tongue chants that you are doing a Holy Ghost ministration. No! The Bible says – be filled with the Holy Spirit, speaking to yourselves IN PSALMS and hymns and spiritual songs…but you have never read the Psalms or the Prophets. You want dance like David danced but you haven’t read what David said
You never hala!
Some of you cannot preach and prophesy because you don’t know the prophets. When Jesus got to His hometown, He said the Spirit of the Lord is upon Me. Isaiah 61. It was powerful! The first time Peter preached, He said “This is that which was spoken by the prophet…that’s right. Joel 2.” You want to teach like Paul taught but you haven’t read what Paul read.
You never hala!
And some cannot live for God alone because you have never read the Scriptures.
If you’ve read Abraham’s story, impatience will die
If you’ve read Joseph’s story, complaining will be hard
If you’ve read the young prophet’s story, no false prophet can easily deceive you
If you’ve read of Ham, you will shun dishonor
If you’ve read of Hezekiah, you will be more careful what you post about your personal life
If you’ve read Hosea, you will understand love better
If you’ve read of Gehazi, you will serve more sincerely
If you’ve read of Ananias and Sapphira, you won’t tell lies in church
If you’ve read of Paul and Silas, you will praise God when the odds are against you
Until you see that you are surrounded with so great a cloud of witnesses; and not just Paul’s witness; you will find it difficult to run the race with patience, the race set before you. Unless you know that everything was written as an example to you, for your learning, comfort, teaching, rebuke, correction, and training in righteousness; you will be a drop out from the school of the Spirit with an incomplete kingdom education.
And Jesus who began to do and teach quoted Genesis, Exodus, Psalms, Deuteronomy etc and Peter quoted Exodus, Leviticus, Isaiah, Psalms etc and Paul quoted Isaiah, Malachi etc; then if you must know the Christian faith; and you must live as they lived
Then you have to read your Bible from Genesis to Revelation.
Nothing less will do.
Good evening.