"Take . . . the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God" (Eph. 6:17).
Your attitude toward Scripture will determine your effectiveness in spiritual battle.
I remember enjoying the observations of a perceptive man who was gazing at a beautiful garden. First he saw a butterfly flitting from flower to flower. It spent a few seconds on the edge of each, but derived no particular benefit from any of them.
Next he saw a botanist with large notebook and microscope in hand. As the botanist carefully observed each flower and plant, he made copious entries in his book. But after hours of meticulous study, most of what he learned was shut up in his book. Very little remained in his mind.
Then came a little bee. When it entered a flower, it emerged laden with pollen. It had left the hive that morning empty, but would return full.
When it comes to Bible study, some people are like butterflys, going from one favorite verse to another, one seminar to another, or one book to another. They're very busy and expend much energy but have little to show for their efforts. They remain unchanged in any significant way because they never really delve into the Word wholeheartedly. They're content to simply flutter around the edges.
Others, like the botanist, may study in great depth but never apply it to their lives. I know of entire commentaries written by unbelievers. In some cases their grasp of Scripture is exceptional, but they know nothing of true love for God and obedience to biblical truth. What a tragedy! But you don't have to be a biblical scholar to make that mistake. You need only to fail to apply what you learn to your life.
Rather, strive to be like the bee, spending time in the Word—reading, studying, taking notes, then emerging fuller than when you began. Your mind will be filled with wisdom and biblical insights. Your life will be sweeter and purer because the Word has done its work (1 Cor. 2:13).
Are you a butterfly, a botanist, or a bee?
Suggestions for Prayer
Thank God for the opportunities He gives you to study His Word. Take full advantage of them.
For Further Study
According to James 1:22-25, what's the difference between someone who merely hears the Word and someone who obeys it?
From Drawing Near by John MacArthur Copyright © 1993. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.