Don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says.’James 1:22 NLT
When we study the Bible, we can’t just stop at reading it. We need to then put what we’ve read into practice. To grow and become more mature, we need to obey what God says. ’Don’t just listen to God’s Word…do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves…if you do what it says…God will bless you for doing it” (James 1:22-25 NLT). Acquiring knowledge and wisdom from the Bible is important, but it doesn’t mean much if we don’t then put it into practice and make changes to our lives. Sometimes the Holy Spirit can show us things about ourselves while we’re reading and studying the Bible. We’re told that: ‘The word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires’ (Hebrews 4:12 NLT). When we become aware that we’re not living how we should, we have two options. We can either ignore what we’ve read and keep living how we’ve always lived, or we can ask God to help us change. Putting what we’ve read into action isn’t always easy. Sometimes it requires us to make big lifestyle changes, and to do things which are outside of our comfort zone. Sometimes it will require us to live more sacrificially, and become more humble, which doesn’t always come naturally to us. But we don’t have to make all these changes on our own. God can help us. And He promises to bless us when we obey Him too. The Bible says, ‘blessed are all who hear the word of God and put it into practice’ (Luke 11:28 NLT). So let’s make sure we’re not just reading the Bible, but that we’re living it out too. What Now? Choose a passage of the Bible to read. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you how you can apply it to your life. Then put it into practice.