BibleOne and No Less
You have received Jesus Christ as your personal Savior by faith alone (Ephesians 2:8, 9) and you are a “child of God” (Romans 8:16; Galatians 3:26), so what’s next? What is the most important thing you can do to insure your success as a Christian in living a spiritually productive and joy-filled life?
Although there are a number of different activities important to the Christian life, there is none more important than learning God’s Word (Bible doctrine). Just as you were born into your physical life and had to take physical nourishment to grow into a physically mature adult, it is even more important as a “born from above” (John 1:12, 13; 3:3) child of God to take spiritual nourishment in order to grow into a spiritually mature adult.
It is God’s desire that you study God’s Word (Bible doctrine) so that you may grow from childhood to maturity in your spiritual life (Ephesians 4:13-15; 1 Peter 2:2; Hebrews 5:12-14; 1 Corinthians 3:2; 14:20). Without the application of Bible doctrine, the Holy Spirit is unable to nurture you to spiritual adulthood (John 16:13, 14; 17:17). And God specifically directs you to study Bible doctrine to show yourself approved unto Him (2 Timothy 2:15). Nothing delights God more than when His children “walk in truth” (2 John 4; 3 John 4), and God’s Word is truth and the means by which He sanctifies (purifies) us (John 17:17; Psalms 119:9, 11; Ephesians 5:26, 27; Philippians 2:14-16). Bible doctrine provides us joy (Jeremiah 15:16) and hope (Romans 15:4). Bible doctrine is essential if we are to be protected from Satan’s attacks (Ephesians 6:17). Bible doctrine protects the believer from false teachings (Acts 17:11; Ephesians 4:13, 14; Titus 1:9; 2 Peter 2:1-3). Bible doctrine provides spiritual illumination and understanding (Psalms 119:105; 130; Hebrews 4:12). Bible doctrine is the basis for a true witness (Colossians 3:16). Bible doctrine serves as a sin-cleansing agent (Psalms 119:9).
Remember that you started your Christian experience by faith and faith came by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17). According to Christ, you are not to live by bread alone but by every word that comes from God (Matthew 4:4). Jesus would have you know Him better, so remember that He is the Word of God (John 1:1, 14; Revelation 19:13). He would have you “walk in the truth,” so remember that He is the Truth (John 14:6). There is no better way to learn the “mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:16) than the study of Bible doctrine. Learning Bible doctrine is our Lord’s way to insure that you are productive in your Christian life (2 Timothy 3:16, 17; John 15:5-8).
In this age and as Christians, we are more fortunate than all the saints who have gone before us. We have God’s inspired and infallible written Word (2 Timothy 3:16; 1 Peter 1:25; 2 Peter 1:21). If we avail ourselves of it, we have a better chance of knowing and understanding our Lord and Savior, even more than the apostles who walked with Him when He was physically alive on this earth. Nothing will bring Him more joy and nothing will bring you more spiritual joy, strength, and endurance than to study His Word (Bible doctrine) and grow in the knowledge of God.
Referenced scriptures follow in order:
Ephesians 2:8, 9—For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.
Romans 8:16—The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God.
Galatians 3:26—For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
John 1:12, 13—But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
John 3:3—Jesus answered and said to him, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."
Ephesians 4:13, 14—Till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ.
1 Peter 2:2—As newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby.
Hebrews 5:12-14—For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
1 Corinthians 3:2—I fed you with milk and not with solid food; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able.
1 Corinthians 14:20—Brethren, do not be children in understanding; however, in malice be babes, but in understanding be mature.
John 16:13, 14—However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. (John 17:17—. . . Your word is truth.)
2 Timothy 2:15—Be diligent [study] to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
2 John 4—I rejoiced greatly that I have found some of your children walking in truth, as we received commandment from the Father.
3 John 4—I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.
John 17:17—Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.
Psalms 119:9, 11—How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word. . . . Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You!
Ephesians 5:26, 27—That He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.
Philippians 2:14-16—Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.
Jeremiah 15:16—Your words were found, and I ate them, And Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; For I am called by Your name, O LORD God of hosts.
Romans 15:4—For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.
Ephesians 6:17—And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.
Acts 17:11—These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.
Ephesians 4:13, 14 (see above)
Titus 1:9—Holding fast the faithful Word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict.
2 Peter 2:1-3—But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber.
Psalms 119:105; 130—Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. . . . The entrance of Your words gives light and understanding to the simple.
Hebrews 4:12—For the Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
Colossians 3:16—Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
Psalms 119:9—How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word.
Romans 10:17—So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.
Matthew 4:4—But He answered and said, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'"
John 1:1, 14—In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. . . . And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.
Revelation 19:13—He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.
John 14:6—Jesus said to him, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
1 Corinthians 2:16—For who has known the mind of the LORD that he may instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ.
2 Timothy 3:16, 17—All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
John 15:5-8—I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.
2 Timothy 3:16 (see above)
1 Peter 1:25—But the word of the LORD endures forever. . . .
2 Peter 1:21—For prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.