Taste and see that the Lord is good. (Psalm 34:8)
Imagine a beautifully decorated cake. A group of women gather around it oohing and aahing. They admire it. They talk about it. How was it made? How beautiful it is! They look at the intricate decorations and discuss them. They wonder how it will taste and what ways they can use it in their lives. Some of them want to store it away in the freezer to make it last. Others look forward to devouring it right away with loved ones. Some will want to host a dinner and have the cake for dessert while still others say it will be perfect for an afternoon snack with coffee. After some time the conclude, say their goodbyes and wait for next week when they will once again study the cake. But they never TASTE the cake!
Lately, that’s how I’ve been feeling about my Bible Study groups.
Our Bible study books are great– written by well-known Bible leaders, engaging and full of insight. I get a lot from the studies. I am inspired and my faith is grown. But lately, although I still enjoy the study I find myself left with an uneasy feeling at the end of the sessions.
Here is my uneasiness. During the hour or two that the group of women meet, we hardly crack open the Bible to look at the actual scriptures. I’m afraid that our Bible study group talks about the Word, admires the Word, and discusses how to apply the Word; but we hardly ever open and read the Word. Some don’t even bring a Bible to the session.
There have been times when I have been involved with a group that will read and discuss a book and call it a Bible Study. Yes, the book does have Biblical concepts and a few Bible verses scattered throughout, but I feel a bit strange calling it a Bible Study.
This is not limited to one group, denomination, or ministry. Over the years I have participated in studies in various churches and various ministries. And I have am not against these studies– I think they have a place and are good. I just find myself with this uneasy attitude with these Bible studies.
What about studies you have done? Do you spend more time in the Bible or in a book about the Bible?