Is it more important to study the Bible or to live a Christlike life?
I am asking this because I see a huge amount of debate about doctrine, evolution, stem cells, premarital sex and so on, out there in US society, yet I feel convinced that, if Jesus lived today, he would not be engaging in these debates: instead he would be in the non-developed regions of the world helping the poor and destitute. For me, whether you are a Christian, a Muslim, or an atheist, we all have an obligation to follow Jesus' example and help the needy of the world -- there are so many of them, after all, and we have so much...
i agree with u on some of your points.. well thought out. however if jesus lived to day, he would be doing and saying the same things he did, when he first spoke to man. Now, like then, its up to man, to "Obey" those things he taught, and expects from them. and to apply them as well. great question. keep them coming. u have given me a new "Food For Thought" to ponder, and write up.. thanks.. jim
I'd say live like one....it wouldn't benefit anyone to be educated fully with the bible and it's history and be clueless about christianity and living "christ like"
To just answer your question, and not the qualifying points you added, I would say they are of equal importance. If one does not study the Bible, he/she does not truly know what being Christlike IS. Just doing NICE things, humanitarian things etc is not all there is to being Christlike.
Yes Jesus fed the hungry, but He also rebuked the religious, healed the sick, taught the word of God, cast out devils etc.To Him, they were all equally important.
But, His MOST important mission was to die as a sacrifice for the sin of humanity, because, as important as the "here and now" is, there is a future (eternal) destiny for us all that He needed to resolve in the process.
Is it more important to study the Bible or to live a Christlike life?
It is impossible to live a Christlike life without studying the Bible.The Bible is what tells us what a Christlike life is.
This is a no-brainer (and I should know, I wrote the question! ). (Apparently my answer was too short for Hubpages' system to let me post, so let me extend it by rephrasing the question -- Is it better to live a life of compassion, service, forgiveness, and fighting for what is right, or is it better to sit reading some book)
I do not think you can seperate the two. You need to read the Bible to understand what God asks of us. I admit I have met my share of people who use the act of reading as an excuse not to live but without the Bible I would not be doing what the Lord wants of me.
Christ did go among the poor and the needy but he also went to the rich [Zacharius (sp)] and to the synigogs. (Sorry, its been a long day and I am not spelling worth a dime.) He over turned tables in the church and spoke out against the fraud. He stayed in the homes of influential people and healed the sick of wealthy as well as poor. He did not discriminate on any grounds. His concern was equally delivered. You learn that from reading the Bible. But you also learn that he accepts his believers as individuals. He does not expect you to go someplace your talents do not call you. He celebrated the differences in each of his disciples and while the message he gave them was the same- how they each carried out the sharing of that message was unique to them.
Many of us are not answering our calling. That is true. Many of us hide behind books and use the search for knowledge as an excuse not to get our hands dirty. But Paul made it clear that there are many parts to the body and each part has its own function. If you are called- GO. But go where you are called.
Also remember there are many different needs in this world. I have known many missionaries. Many stayed at our house when I was a kid. One thing remains true- they needed us back at home. They needed prayer support, financial support, spiritual support when things felt hopless. The needed care packages and sometimes they simply needed a place where they knew they could send thier children if areas became unstable. They needed a place to rest.They also needed to know that the people they left behind where being cared for and not abandoned. By reading the Bible you learn that needy is not always defined by lack of wealth. Yes, Americans can definately give up a great many things but you do not have to change continents to do the Lord's work. The Dorcus Society in many churches is based on a women Paul praises. Dorcus never left her home town but demonstrated the love and message of God. I guess for me it comes down to this. I should get off my lazy butt and demonstrate the message of God in all I do but I know I am by pausing to read his word and ask for his guidance. It is a balance of the two that creates change and brings about miracles.
It is important to do both, you can not have one without the other. The Bible teaches you how to be Christlike and being Christlike encourages you to study the Bible.
studying the Bible the right way is very important, i am in the process now. study along with history helps alot.
Christian believers need both Bible study/discussion/messages and a life lived in Jesus' power for him.
My reasons are several:
Unless you come to understand and know the true God of the Bible, your "good life" will count for nothing with him. If you say that it's not important to know who he is, you may be serving the wrong god. That obedience will also be worthless.
The true God is one God in three Persons--Father, Jesus, and Holy Spirit. Yes, he is mysterious yet revealed in the Bible; we cannot figure him out completely, though our culture is steeped in rationalism that tries to reason every matter out. Jesus was and is fully God and fully human, another mystery that can't be fully explained. The Bible is God's Word revealing his and our natures.
God will only accept our "good" actions because of our trust in and commitment to Jesus's perfect life, death as our substitute, and resurrection for the new life out of which we live for that mysterious 3-in-1 God.
How do I know that he is the only true God? He is a God of grace, which is his free acceptance that we could never earn with our imperfect lives. All other "gods" demand "good actions" in order for us to earn their love. But Jesus earned God the Father's acceptance in our place. All we need to do is accept his life, death, and resurrection as our perfect road to God's love and to eternal life.
When we accept Jesus as our Rescuer, then he gives his transforming life to serve him as we discover his will in his Word, the Bible, for our everyday lives. Read Ephesians 2:1-10.
For these reasons, both Bible study/messages/discussions and living for that one true God are important.
I invite you to visit my new Hubpages blog "Overcoming Doubt."
The bible tells us to "study to show ourselves approved", to "be ready with an answer", etc..
In studying the bible, we learn how we are to live, without the bible, we really have no clue-just live for ourselves, then none of the things you mentioned would be taken care of. Jesus understood scripture and expounded on it with the learned men of the time, to their astonishment. We need to know what God says on things, or we don't know how to react.
And, no, Jesus wouldn't just be out in the furthest reaches preaching. He would also be challenging those that think they know. He didn't come to help those that are poor alone. He cam to seek and save that which is lost-and that is all mankind.
I encourage you to read scripture a bit more before making assumptions.
While I agree that the Bible is a great resource, it is incomprehensible to me that anyone would suggest it is impossible to live a christian life without it. Millions of Christians throughout history have devoted their lives to God without being able to read the Bible. Millions of people continue to do so, in places where the Bible isn't available or where the masses are illiterate. We have the Holy Spirit, People, empowering us to know and do God's will.
So, to answer your question: Way more important to do God's will than to read about God's will. Jesus said it himself in the sermon on the mount. "Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven."
I'm sorry, but I'm of the school of thought that the most studied people when it comes to religion are the least useful to the world.
The life predicates the studying. Fact is, most of the Bible is build around the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule. Everything else supports those eleven principles.
While Biblical study is a great way to learn more about the Christian walk, it isn't more important than the actual walk. Keep in mind that the Pharisees were well versed in the Torah.
A traditional Christian who believes that Satan exists, also believes that Satan is able to quote the Bible well. There are passages in the new Testament about how Satan used the Bible to tempt Jesus.
Assuming that you are a traditional Christian, then you should be aware that biblical knowledge is not the key to the Christian salvation. However many fundamental Christians are in the habit of carrying their Bibles with them and quoting from it to justify their point of view.
However, I believe anyone who has faith in God, knows that God dwell within us. With that faith, one needs no proof from any external document including scriptures on what he has to say or do. Jesus and other spiritual masters never carried scriptures with them.
With faith in the God who resides within, you will know how to make the right choice. You will joyfully do the right thing such as loving those around you as you love yourself. Do always what love wants you to do. God is Love. God is also Joy. Many non-Christians are able to practice this with joy.
So now go into your God space within you. See all what God has shown you through all your senses. Seek the truth. God is Truth. He will guide you on the issues in front of you. These could involve stem cells, gay marriage, evolution, or even to buy that car.
God is Joy, Truth and Love. This trinity is the mark of God.
God always prefers the grandest vision for you.
Then his message will always been the grandest choice with Joy, Love and Truth. Anything less than that is not his suggestion. However, it is you choice to accept his guidance or not. Many prefer to listen to others rather than God.
He will never force you with his message.
You are free to choose what others say even if it is not in sink with God's direction for you.
This is actually not the first time that I have heard this question and it is great to be able to share my faith and beliefs concerning this subject! I believe that studying the Bible is essential for knowing God. Once I am able to better know God, His desires, and His plan, then I am much better equipped to live the life that He has for me, serving others in the ways that He designs. Living a Christ-like life is the goal of all brothers and sisters in Christ and knowing God's Word is our instruction manual on how to do this! Let's say that you start a new job that you know nothing about how to do. Wouldn't it be much more efficient and effective to study the employee manual before simply trying it cold? I grew up hearing "if all else fails, read the instructions," however, I have found that by studying my instructions prior to my actions, I am blessed far more in my endeavors because I know better how to do my job, which is serving others through the faithfulness of God!
I am a child of the Living God, who lives in me everyday! Thank you for sharing your thought-provoking question and God Bless!
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