How I Read the Bible as a New Christian

Here are tips and resources to help you form your relationship with God through reading His Word from someone beginning the journey with you.

Photo by Tara Winstead from Pexels

 

BY KEESHIA MORSE, AUGUST 10, 2021


As a former atheist turned new age, turned Christian, I have never found more joy and peace than in the presence of God.


The journey to Truth isn’t always an easy one, and today I’d like to speak to those who are open to studying the Bible but unsure of where or how to start.


1 - How to Read the Bible: Open Your Heart to God.


I remember when I was younger and atheist and picking up the Bible, trying to read it, and struggling through the passages of The Gospel. It was almost like a foreign language. The sentences didn’t make any sense.


I now realize that at that time, my heart was closed and I did not have ears to hear. Only when I surrendered myself to God did reading the Bible begin to make sense.


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If you are reading the Bible, read it to seek its truth. When you open your heart to God, the Bible comes to life in a way that only a believer can experience. It’s truly some type of miracle. It unfolds itself to you the more you seek its Truth.


You begin to crave the word of God and when you begin to understand God’s love and his plan for you, no darkness can replace it.


2 - How to Read the Bible: Read the Bible like a storybook.

It is important to understand that the Bible is chronological. There are many characters and many plot twists, but the entire Bible works as one cohesive story.


When you approach reading the Bible for the first time, think of it as a storybook. The first time you read a book, like Genesis or Mark, take in the whole thing and worry about the details later. It will benefit you in your future studies to understand the events as a whole.


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You will be able to dig deeper in every passage for the rest of your life. Studying the Bible is a lifelong practice. You will never be done reading it and gaining wisdom from its pages. Seek first to understand the stories as they are on the surface and the rest will follow throughout your lifetime.


3 - How to Read The Bible: Study the Bible like a scholar.

Once you have become familiar with the bible and comfortable with its main message, analyze it. In high school, we were taught to read Shakespeare. Before we read a new play, we would discuss the context of the play, understand the relationship between the characters, and understand the historical context at the time it was written.


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Do something similar when studying the Bible. Further your understanding by looking into the meaning of parables used in a passage. Analyze specific words used by looking up their definitions. Understand the relationships between the characters, and the context of the setting in which the scripture took place. One reason the Bible seemed so unrelatable at the beginning of my studies was that I didn’t understand the context.


I recommend picking up a resource like Haily’s Bible Handbook to help give you some quick context while you’re studying.


4 - How to Read the Bible: Read more than one translation.

There is now no excuse not to read the Bible thanks to modern technology.


Download the Bible app on your phone and you will have nearly every translation available for your reference. Some translations are easier to understand than others.


Related: 10 Christian Study Guides To Help Your Faith


Just read the Bible, and if the Kings James version is a roadblock in your way, pick another translation.


The best translation of the Bible is one that you will read.


5 - How to Read the Bible: Document your study.

Grab a notebook and jot down your reflections so that they are solidified into memory. This diary can be physical or digital. Writing helps you reflect on what you’ve studied. You don’t even have to keep what you’ve written. The exercise of gathering and organizing your thoughts onto paper is enough to help retain your newfound lessons from God.


This is completely optional but I recommend finding a creative outlet with your Bible study. This can help you:

  • find the motivation to study

  • stay in contact with a community of believers

  • have a place to express and document your journey in Christ.

I am a creative person by nature, I have always loved creating art.


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In 2015 I was surprised to find that there is an entire community out there of Bible Journalers that take their creative energy and pour it into worship through documenting their studies onto pages like a scrapbook. Check out @illustratedfaith on Instagram for inspiration.


Main Takeaways About Reading the Bible

To reconcile yourself to your creator you must understand who He is and we learn about him through the stories in the Bible.


Reading can sometimes feel intimidating, especially as a new believer, but if you approach your study with an open heart, I believe you will be incredibly delighted to find endless awe and inspiration.


May God protect and bless you on the journey to Truth and Peace. Amen.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Keeshia Morse has spent most of her professional career as an accountant in the software as a service industry, learning ways to streamline and automate work. She has an affinity for record-keeping and, as a hobby, creatively documents life through journaling. She hopes to encourage the next generation through her publications to choose truth, liberty, and justice for all.


Follow Keeshia on YouTube, where you can find her fawning over special edition pens and notebooks on her YouTube channel.


Keeshia is a staff author at Truly Free Society.


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