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A young boy was walking around the playground pulling a piece of string. His teacher approached him and asked, “Why are you pulling that piece of string?” The boy replied, “Because it’s a lot easier than pushing it.”
When it comes to encouraging young people to read God’s word, it’s a lot easier to lead from the front than to push from the back. When adults engage in regular personal Bible study, teenagers can much more easily develop a lifelong habit themselves.
Churches - Families - Adult - Role - Models
Having said that though, even in churches and families with good adult role models, Christian teenagers can often be indifferent about personal Bible study. Ask them to list their favorite activities, and personal Bible reading is rarely one of them. But ask what will help in their Christian life, and studying God’s word will almost certainly come top. So how do we help teenagers see that what is good for them may also be enjoyable?
Three positive message those teenagers (who definitely aren’t reading this) need to hear:
Bible - Jesus
1. The Bible is about Jesus not us.
When we approach the Bible thinking it’s about us, most of it seems completely irrelevant. The exasperated teen asks, “How do these levitical laws or endless genealogies help me do my homework or cope with the tensions in my friendship group?!” As a result, the Bible either lies unread, or passages must be twisted to be about us—making Bible study very hard work. Sally Lloyd Jones’ introduction to the excellent Jesus Storybook Bible makes the same point, “The Bible isn’t about us and what we should be doing, it’s about God and what he has done.”
Message - Bible - News - Jesus - Paul
The message of the Bible then is the good news about Jesus. As Paul reminds Timothy, the holy Scriptures “are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Jesus Christ”...
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