If you want to hear from God . . .

If you want to hear from God, read the Bible.

If you want to hear from God audibly, read the Bible out loud.

Seriously, the Bible is God’s preferred method of speaking to people.  It is possible that He could use some other means such as an angel or a dream, but it is not likely.  And if He does speak in some way outside the Bible, the message will never contradict anything in the Bible.  This is good news, not bad news, because it means you can hear from him anytime you want.

You can learn about what God is like, why Jesus the Son came (to save lost sinners), what the chief problem of man is (sin), how to be forgiven for all your sins and be reconciled to him, how to best live your life, how to love others, how to be a better spouse / parent / friend, and much more.  No one should go through life without reading the book written by the inspiration of the creator of the universe.

Make no mistake: The original writings turned out exactly as God and the human writers wanted them to, and it has been reliably transmitted to us.

If you’ve never read all of the Bible, this is the year.  Here’s a carrot: I guarantee that you won’t regret it.  You are actually spending time with God as you read it and learning what He wanted you to know.  It will accomplish what He desires and achieve the purpose for which He sent it (Isaiah 55).

Here’s the stick for Christians: If you don’t read it, I’m going to pray that atheists ask you why you claim the name of Christ without having a desire to read what He is trying to communicate to you.  They might even ask how you can be sure you should be following him if you haven’t taken the time to read the primary writings about him.  They might ask how many other books and magazines you read and how much TV you watch rather than read what your Savior has to say. (I recommend going with the carrot.)  Seriously, make this the year you start reading it regularly.

You don’t have to read it in a year, though that is a reasonable goal if you’ve never done it.  Hey, at least read the New Testament!  It is shorter than most novels.  Just pick it up each day and read something.

Here are some great Bible reading plans.  I’m really enjoying going through it chronologically.  It weaves things like the messages of the prophets into the historical accounts of the kings they preached to, and it puts the Psalms in where the related historical events occurred and/or when they were written.

Or try listening to the Bible if you are more of an auditory person.  You can get free downloads of the New Testament and reasonably priced downloads of the entire Bible.

Just read it.


Bonus: This great message, courtesy of Brandon.  I love how it highlights that if someone claims God told them something then the burden of proof is on them to prove it.