I took a Bible study methods course several years ago. One of my favorite exercises from it was summarizing Scripture in writing, one chunk at a time, to help you process and absorb the information. I loved the way chapter 6 ended, so I decided to rewrite it in my own words in my journal.
Here’s the original text:
“Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary. Jesus has already gone in there for us. He has become our eternal high priest in the order of Melchizedek.”
Here’s my (pre-coffee) summary:
Are you in need of hope? Run to God; who doesn’t lie to us or break his promises. Tether yourself to him like an anchor being heaved into the ocean, grounding a boat tossing in turbulent waters. Take refuge in Jesus, who is your advocate, waving us in to God’s inner circle and extending safety for our soul. We are eternally protected, our lives in the hands of a perfect leader.
What is your soul anchored by? What grounds you? Or better, think about what fails you.
I love the way the author shoots straight in 5:11-13.
“There is much more we would like to say about this, but it is difficult to explain, especially since you are spiritually dull and don’t seem to listen. You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food. For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right.”
Do you fall into this category? Someone who should know better, but doesn’t? Someone who struggles with the simple foundations of knowing and following God, but shouldn’t? Often this is because we aren’t putting into practice what we learn. We binge on Bible studies, books, commentary, blog posts, podcasts, but never truly digest what we’re learning. Is your discernment growing? Do you recognize God’s character when you see it? Can you tell when someone’s misusing Scripture?
If you’re just starting to read your Bible and haven’t known God very long: this isn’t for you. If you have known God a long time, are familiar with Scripture and sit in the back of his church: this is specifically for you. God has all the grace in the world for people walking towards him, who stumble and stagger in the journey. But gluttony of knowledge and sitting on our hands is not part of the gospel.
What’s something from today’s reading that you can put into practice?