Written by: Tim Wood
You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life. (John 5:39-40)
Jesus said these words to a group of people who knew the studies the Scriptures. Some of these people had memorized large portions of the Old Testament. They loved the Scriptures, searched the Scriptures and were considered experts in the Scriptures. But Jesus essentially calls them ignorant experts. In all of their intense study of Scripture they missed the point of Scripture. Jesus was not saying to these people that the Scriptures were unimportant or that they were wrong in revering the Scriptures. The point Jesus was making is that they were missing the point.
The Scriptures point to Jesus. The Scriptures bear witness to Jesus who gives life. The Scriptures come alive when we see Jesus in them because Jesus gives life.
There can be lots of reasons why people study the Bible. Bible study can be picking through an ancient text looking for support for some philosophy. It can be an information-gathering exercise. It can be a dissection of a passage and subjecting it to critical scrutiny according to prevailing thought. It can be looking for a moral to follow. But, if we miss Jesus in our Bible study we have missed the point. Bible study is an important discipline only if it leads us to see Jesus and gain life from Him.
Are you studying the Bible to see Jesus? Are you searching the Scriptures to find the life that He brings? As you read the Word of God do so to find the God of the Word.