How many times in our lives have we wanted to read the Bible but didn’t know what to read, so we just opened it and read whatever was available. In some ways, this is Russian Roulette Bible Reading. Let us spin the Bible around and see what I find.
While the Bible is “breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16, ESV), this Russian Roulette Bible Reading is not necessarily the best practice. I am not saying that the occasional “browsing” is discouraged—I am more concerned about the practice of letting this be your devotional time.
First of all, opening the Bible and letting it fall where it may is not really taking reading seriously. I am not saying that Bible should be very hard work, but it does take some effort. It takes some effort to plan, execute the plan and reflect over continuous study from the plan. There needs to be a little bit of intentionality to truly see spiritual growth.
The practice also puts the reading running the risk of taking things out of context. If you are just opening the Bible and blindly placing your finger in the middle can lead to some interesting passages that can be taken completely out context. It is always best to read around a passage to understand it fully.
Another reason to avoid this practice is that it creates a bad habit of laziness. Since every word of the Bible is true, and there is so much truth there—it becomes easy to “get something out of your devotion” without much effort. The problem is that you will miss enormous truths that are highlighted throughout scripture when you do. You may fix the immediate issue, but you’ll miss the long term satisfaction.
So, while many people joke about this technique—the reality is that people use it daily. I hope that all will search the internet for Bible Reading Plans that will help them find a plan to work through and begin to grasp a holistic view of the Bible.
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