I Need to Read my Bible More... thanks, Tim Keller

This past weekend, I was fortunate enough to hear Tim Keller speak at an event for the Museum of the Bible. Like a lot of people I know (and many more I don't), Dr. Keller has been heavily influential in my spiritual growth over the last decade. I listened to his sermons on my iPod shuffle on long runs when I was in college (ten years ago!) and voraciously devoured his books, wondering why Biblical themes and perspectives that seemed so obvious once he said them, hadn't occurred to me before.

Needless to say, getting to hear him live was certainly a treat (a theological treat!), but some of my biggest takeaways from the evening (besides adding several books to my "to be read" list, thanks Keller) occurred during the Q& A session.

Since his lecture was centered around the Bible's importance and relevance in today's culture, one of the questions was along the lines of, "why isn't the Bible held in the same esteem as it once was?"

I can't quote him directly... but his answer was along the lines of, "Christians have spent far too long holding up the Bible to others without spending time in it themselves." 

(Insert hand-raised emoji). Me. He's talking to ME.

I write about my faith on the internet. I memorize verses with my kids. I work faithfully through inductive Bible study after inductive Bible study. But... in doing so, I neglect huge chunks of the Bible. It's been over five years since I've read the Bible in a year (my oldest child is five. Coincidence? Doubtful). The genealogies, temple dimensions, OT laws... all neglected in favor of deep study over one book at at time.

Image result for bible public domain
Now, I am NOT knocking inductive studies. They are necessary for rich knowledge of scripture. But when it's at the expense of spending time in other books of the Bible? How can I expect to fully appreciate the metanarrative of scripture WITHOUT reading about the Israelites demanding a king? Or without reading the endless lists of laws? 

I hope this doesn't come off as legalistic. I've taken back up a yearly-bible reading plan along with my 1 Peter study, but I don't think I am any less loved by God or less righteous through Christ's sacrifice if I miss a day (or three). Just that, if this book, this Bible, is really what I believe it is- God's Word- then I desperately need to be spending time in it. 

Feel free to hold me accountable. 

 “Jesus Christ doesn’t just give us truths; he is the truth. Jesus Christ is the prophet to end all prophets. He gives us hard-copy words from God, truths on which we can build our lives, truths we have to submit to, truths we have to obey, and truths we have to build our lives on, but he himself is the truth.” -Tim Keller


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