How high on your list of priorities would you rank reading the Bible?
Perhaps not very high, especially if you’re busy or distracted by other things.
However, it’s important to be reading and studying the Bible regularly. I think 2 Timothy 3:16-17 speaks to this importance.
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.2 Timothy 3:16-17
Let’s talk about what those verses mean in greater depth.
1. All Scripture
The first thing the verse says is that all scripture is breathed out by God.
Let’s talk about that word: all.
All Scripture. Not just the New Testament. Not just the parts that are encouraging or happy. Not just the Psalms and stories with happy endings. All of it.
This is important because it’s easy for us to pick and choose what we want to read rather than what we need to read.
Sometimes that means reading about the sins and mistakes of the Israelites. Sometimes that means reading confusing and scary prophecies, even if we don’t always understand them. Sometimes that means reading teachings that really hit hard and convict you.
And the reason why is explained in the rest of the verse.
2. Breathed Out By God
The next thing the verse says is that all scripture is breathed out by God.
Breathed out by God.
Isn’t that amazing?
The God of the universe, who created you and me and the world we live in, gave us His Word so that we can read it and get to know Him.
If God gave it to us, shouldn’t we read it?
3. Profitable For…
2 Timothy 3:16-17 continues to say how scripture is profitable or beneficial for teaching, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness.
That is, it’s good to read scripture (all scripture) because it teaches you, it corrects you, and it trains you to be more righteous.
As Christians, while we are justified by Jesus’s sacrifice, we should be striving to become more like Jesus and not allow sin to continue to infect our lives. God’s Word helps us with this by, if we are reading it frequently, confronting any sin in our lives and calling us out on it, and teaching us how we should act.
4. To Equip
2 Timothy 3:17 finishes the point of verse 16 by saying, “that the man of God may complete, equipped for every good work.”
All that teaching and learning we just heard about in the last point? That’s so that we can be complete and equipped to do good works: God’s work.
Thus, the Bible not only teaches us and corrects us, but equips us, making us ready to act.
So Why Don’t We Read It?
If the Bible is so important for Christians to read, and with so many benefits if we do so, why don’t we read it more?
There could be a number of reasons, but I think it all comes down to our sinful hearts being distracted by less important things. Up until recently, I wasn’t reading the Bible consistently, and the main reason for that was probably just distraction and putting other things before finding a Bible reading plan to start.
But if just these two verses from scripture teach us anything, it’s that the Bible is worth reading! We just need to take the step, with God’s help, and decide to put aside distractions and start reading.
Thank you for reading today’s article! I hope this breakdown of 2 Timothy 3:16-17 has helped you in some way. If you’d like to hear more from me, you can subscribe to my email list at the bottom of this post. In the future I plan to post reflections on what I’m learning from my Bible reading, so stay tuned for that!
Have a blessed rest of your day,