The bible is like a book of vows for believers; those who have a covenant with God.
Like marriage is based upon love and devotion for each other and is made with promises, so a relationship with God has vows.
It’s basicly the vow to love each other and stay faithful, for better or for worse.
In good times and in bad times.
In sickness and in health.
God makes this vow to us too.
To stay faithful no matter what.
Even when we struggle to stay loyal to him, He never struggles to stay faithful to us.
He actually is faithfull to us even before we get “married” to him.
But when we get married “the deal is sealed”.
We get to take part of so much more of God’s goodness in our lives when we enter into a covenant with him. When we become believers.
When we marry God, or become his children or whatever analogy you want to use, our spirit becomes one with his Spirit.
We give ourselves to him and He gives himself to us totally.
In fact He already gave himself totally to us before we even said yes to him.
We just have to receive him.
We don’t become God because a creature can’t become it’s own Creator but we do become godly in the core of our being.
We only have to learn how to live from our spirit instead of our soul (our mind, will and emotions) that still is used to living a life that is contrary to God’s ways of love.
We have more selfish and impure motivations than we might realise.
God does not want to limit our fun but rather wants to increase it on the long term.
One of the ways God helps us doing this is through relationship with him.
The more time we spend with him the more we become like him.
Another tool He gave us to learn his ways of love is the bible.
When you unite yourself to God through faith you embrace the whole bible as truth.
Every law and instruction, every story in it, shows us the nature of God.
His goodness, his purity, his kindness.
All his promises toward us. His vows to us.
And yes also the way He eventually deals with people that haven’t surrendered to him.
You see it would not be love if God let evil (sin) continue forever.
See also “Choice”.
Thankfully He changes us from the inside when we become believers and although we are not under the law anymore like they were in the old testament/covenant (see “Instructions from God”) the instructions God gives us still lead to life if we obey them.
The bible says that with this new covenant God writes his laws on our heart.
It’s like He’s gives us a new conscience.
I’ve had it happen several times that I had a certain conviction about something without someone telling me this was the right thing and only later I found out this was actually in the bible.
However it may take time to develop this sensitivity and I believe that reading the bible helps us to become more connected to our spirit.
We don’t read the bible to impose outward laws upon ourselves.
Rather we read it to draw out the wisdom that’s already inside our spirit since the moment we surrendered our lives to God.
It’s also a good way to test if our current convictions are in line with God.
For me reading the bible is not boring. It’s not about gettig more knowledge in our head.
I read it daily and it’s like spiritual food.
It gives a measure of peace and it draws me closer to God.
Jesus himself is called “the Word of God” and that’s exacty what it feels like:
Like partaking of Jesus.
It’s a way of having relationship with him.
You have to keep in mind though that it contains a lot of symbolism.
Even the actual events it describes have a deeper meaning that always can teach us something for today for our current lives.
In order to understand this we need to meditate on what we read and ask the Holy Spirit who lives in every believer to reveal it’s relevance for us.
Since the bible contains two covenants with God, one old for the people that lived before Jesus died and one new for us today, you might want to start with reading the new testament.
Also it can be helpful to read books that explain the bible through additional information about the culture it was written in and other related events during these times that are not described in the bible itself. Books that can help us seeing the overall connection between the different parts.
We always need to look at the context in order to understand what was meant. Be careful not to take one verse and try to explain it without taking the context into account. What you read might only apply for a certain situation or a certain period and not be universal. So keep that in mind.
A modern translation of the bible I really like is The Passion Translation from dr. Brian Simmons.
It’s not finished but it contains the whole new testament and some of the old and it has many notes with valuable additional information and explanation.
With all commentaries you do have to keep in mind that the authors can make mistakes and often do.
So above all keep listening to the Holy Spirit inside your heart to confirm what others have written.
Another readable translation is The Amplified Bible.
It often gives multiple possible meanings of the original text since many words can have different meanings.
It may seem overwhelming to start reading a big complicated book like that but keep in mind you have the rest of your life to read and understand it and it always has more layers of meaning to it.
It’s like a huge treasure chest, or rather a large vault, that you will never exhaust!
Reading the bible is spiritual treasure hunting!
So have fun!