Jesus said, “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (Jn. 8:32). The religion of Christ is rooted in knowledge, not emotion. This knowledge, however, does not come without effort on our part. It requires study of God’s word.
We Know Sin Through The Law
Paul said he would not have known what sin was unless the Law told him (Rom. 7:7). That is, he only understood right from wrong because of instruction from God’s word. It is no different for us. We learn what to do and what not to do by studying the Bible.
Man does not inherently know the right way to live (Prov. 14:12). He must be guided by divine wisdom that is revealed in the word of God. This wisdom is not attained by osmosis or caught like a virus. We have to put forth a concerted effort to understand it. That is why the Bible says to “be diligent to present yourself approved to God… rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15).
We Experience Joy From Knowledge
Some believe a feeling of joy indicates or provides certain knowledge that one is saved. The Bible teaches it is the other way around. The Ethiopian eunuch was taught from the word of God (Acts 8:27-35). He asked what hindered him from being baptized and was told only his acknowledge belief held him back (Acts 8:36, 37). When he confessed, he was promptly baptized and then went on his way rejoicing (Acts 8:39). To put it in order then: study, knowledge, action, salvation, joy. The Ethiopian did not know he was saved because of his feeling of joy, but rejoiced because he knew he had been saved.
We Build Strength From Study
Paul admonished the Ephesians to “be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might” (Eph. 6:10). He then told them to put on the armor of God and provided a detailed list of what this includes (Eph. 6:11-18). Notice how each piece is either directly or indirectly related to truth: belt of truth, sandals of the gospel, shield of faith—that comes by hearing the word of God (Rom. 10:17), and so on.
The way the church is edified is by study of God’s word. The body of Christ was given apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers (Eph. 4:11). These are all positions of instruction. We have the work apostles and prophets in the New Testament. Evangelists, pastors, and teachers are those who help inform others and apply the truth. We must listen to and meditate on that truth or there will be no growth.
Studying the Bible is vital to the life of a Christian. Without it, we simply do not know God’s will for us. With it, we have a lamp to our feet and a light to our path (Psa. 119:105).