Bible Week – Day 7 – The Bible and our Church
Live in such a way as to cause no trouble either to Jews or Gentiles or to the church of God. Just do as I do; I try to please everyone in all that I do, not thinking of my own good, but of the good of all, so that they might be saved. Imitate me, then, just as I imitate Christ. (1 Corinthians 10:32–11:1 GNB)
Our Canadian individualistic sensibilities might be offended by the idea that we need to learn from other Christians. After all, we have the Bible so we can go directly to reading about Jesus on our own. There is no doubt that our high literacy rate and mass production of Scripture are a blessing and individual devotional reading should be encouraged.
Recent studies such as the Canadian Bible Engagement Study, however, support what Paul and other biblical writers seemed to know in their much more communal culture: we grow much better in the contexts of community and conversation. We cannot simply imitate Christ as individuals; we imitate Christ through imitating others who also follow Christ. These are the contexts within which the Bible was written and many suggest that about 80% of spiritual growth occurs in these contexts.
How much of your engagement with the Bible is done individually? How much is experienced within a conversation with other followers of Christ? How much is within larger community gatherings? Do you feel that these are healthy amounts or do one or more areas need strengthening?
If you aren’t part of a church or a small group that allows for honest conversation, take the time to find a healthy church in your community or create a small group within your church.
The Canadian Bible Society, in partnership with Faith Comes By Hearing, has created the “You’ve Got the Time” challenge. It’s simple: listen to Scripture for 40 days, ideally as part of a community. Sign up at biblesociety.ca/time
The Canadian Bible Society, in partnership with Faith Comes By Hearing, has created the “You’ve Got the Time” challenge. It’s simple: listen to Scripture for 40 days, ideally as part of a community.
Follow along with the 2014 Bible Week Blog