We have come to the end of our studies, though by no means to the end of our study of God’s Word. We have seen the manifold wisdom of God unfolded through the pages of Scripture; His eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord (Eph. 3:10-11). We have only scratched the surface in these brief studies. As the apostle Paul was moved to exclaim,
“Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!” (Rom. 11:33)
It is our prayer that you have been helped through these studies to better understand God’s Word, and that you have been encouraged to diligently study the Word on your own, always being careful to “rightly divide the Word of truth” (II Tim. 2:15).
As you study, keep in mind that Bible study is not an end in itself. Certainly it is important to know what the Bible says and to understand what it means, but this is not enough. We need to take it a step further. II Timothy 3:16-17 tells us that,
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine (teaching), for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
God’s Word is profitable for us as believers, but not just for doctrine or teaching. There are three other areas that it benefits us in: reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness (or righteous living). For these last three to be of help to us, we must respond to the Word in faith and obedience. When God reproves us and shows us things we should not do, we need to obey the reproof and stop doing them. When God corrects us and shows us things we need to change in our lives, we need to obey the correction and make the necessary changes. When God instructs us in how to live righteously, we need to obey the instruction and do what God tells us to do. James puts it all together by saying,
“But be doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” (James 1:22)
We deceive ourselves if we believe that simply hearing and understanding the Word of God is sufficient to please Him. The apostle Paul expressed this need to be “doers of the word” as he prayed for the Colossian believers.
“… that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.” (Col. 1:9-10)
The purpose of being filled with the knowledge of God’s Word is so that we can know His will. Once we know His will, then we can walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him. As we walk in His will, we become fruitful in every good work He has called us to do (Eph. 2:10). Please notice that the final statement in Colossians 1:10 indicates that as we walk and work for the Lord, we continue increasing in the knowledge of God.
Ultimately, we study the Bible so that we may come to know the One who wrote it—the Lord. The prophet Jeremiah was led of the Lord to write these words,
“Thus says the LORD: Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, let not the mighty man glory in his might, nor let the rich man glory in his riches; But let him who glories glory in this, That he understands and knows Me, that I am the LORD, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. For in these I delight, says the LORD.” (Jer. 9:23-24)
What a tremendous privilege we have of knowing and understanding the Lord. Not just knowing about Him, but actually knowing Him; having a close, personal, loving relationship with the God of glory. It is our prayer that you may come to know Him in this way.
“That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him.” (Eph. 1:17).