I encourage everyone to read the Bible. Just read it, like any book, from cover to cover, whole books and chapters at a time. Study the Bible. Read commentaries. Find out who wrote each book, when, in what circumstances, ask ‘who was it written for?’
But above all, meditate on the Bible. In fact, the Bible is such a book that you can’t read it or study it without sooner or later starting to meditate on it. It is the Word of God, and sooner or later, as we read, the Holy Spirit leads us into all truth [John 16:13]. As we read we come closer to God.
Biblical meditation is not about emptying our minds but about filling our minds with the Word of God. Paul tells us that whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things [Philippians 4:8]. Let the Word of God fill your mind, let it ‘dwell in you richly’ [Colossians 3:16].
Biblical meditation has been likened to chewing the cud. Relax. It can’t be hurried. Chew on each word and phrase. Chew and suck out the juices.
‘[The] Righteous chews on wisdom like a dog on a bone, rolls virtue around on his tongue. His heart pumps God’s Word like blood through his veins.’ [Psalm 37:30,31 The Message.]
Biblical meditation is good for your mental health. Instead of worrying, letting your problems go round and round in your mind, meditate on God’s Word. Rick Warren in The Purpose Driven Life says that if you know how to worry, you know how to meditate. Instead of worrying, focus on God and His Word, let His Word go round and round in your mind.
‘Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.’ [Proverbs 16:24]. When Jesus asked the disciples if they were going to leave Him, Peter said, ‘Where would we go? You have the words of eternal life.’ [John 6:68]. God’s words are life and health.