Jesus said: “I have testimony weightier than that of John. For the works that the Father has given me to finish – the very works that I am doing – testify that the Father has sent me. And the Father who sent me has himself testified concerning me. You have never heard his voice nor seen his form, nor does his word dwell in you, for you do not believe the one he sent. You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life”.
Lord God, ever since I became a Christian I have loved the Scriptures. You know that when I was still in my mid-teens my parents gave me a copy of ‘The Living Bible’, and I read it through from cover to cover: it was so easy to read, and the words seemed to jump out from the page and apply themselves to my life! Ever since then I have read the Bible daily, and I have read it through in several different translations. And still, all these years later, it doesn’t disappoint me. Whether it’s a heartfelt cry for help in a psalm, or a gritty story of sinful humanity in the books of Samuel and Kings, or a scorching call for repentance from the prophets, or a word of life from Jesus or his apostles – I always find nourishment for my journey in the pages of the Scriptures.
But help me, Lord God, not to forget these words of Jesus. It would be a tragedy to read a book about marriage instead of enjoying a marriage, and it would be a tragedy for me to read and study about the life you give us without coming to you to enjoy that life. So help me to come to you, Lord Jesus, as the one about whom the Scriptures testify. Help me to see how you are the goal that the story of the Scriptures is leading toward – how you are the brightest light of revelation in the whole library of Scripture, and how you illuminate and interpret everything else in the light of God’s perfect love and holiness. Use this book to draw me closer to you, O God, and may it be a lamp to my feet and a lantern on my path as I journey with Jesus each day. Amen.