by Justin Torossian (from a column in The Sun Gazette 31/1/18)
“Another ‘D’ on my test...this is the last thing I need!”
Struggling in school had become the norm for Angel, a 10th-grader at Antilles Adventist Academy, and he’d enough. Approaching his teacher after class he asked the million-dollar question, “What can I do to raise my grades?” What Angel was about to hear he would never forget. “Before studying for any other class, study your Bible.” Study His Bible?! As it was, Angel hardly had time for his homework! “But...how can I do that? I’m trying to keep afloat in all my other classes!” Angel answered back incredulously. Little did Angel know, his teacher had just shared the secret he needed!
In Amos 3:7 the Bible says, “Surely the Lord will do nothing unless He reveals His secrets to His servants the prophets.” This secret was made clear in 1892 with the publication of a little book called “Steps to Christ.” On page 90 it says,
“There is nothing more calculated to strengthen the intellect than the study of the Scriptures. No other book is so potent to elevate the thoughts, to give vigour to the faculties, as the broad, ennobling truths of the Bible. If God’s word were studied as it should be, men would have a breadth of mind, a nobility of character, and a stability of purpose rarely seen in these times.”
Angel decided that he would take his teacher’s advise, starting his study period with the Bible and then progressing from the most to least difficult subjects. Soon, Angel’s grades began to rise, until he ended the semester with five ‘A’s and two ‘B’s! Truly, nothing can strengthen our intellect like the study of the Bible.
Now you may be thinking to yourself, “Great! Now I just need to read the Bible before I start my homework and my grades will automatically go up!” Not so fast! Picking up our Bibles and reading them like a news article can’t cut it. We need to study the Bible. Here are two ways you can study your Bible:
Compare scripture with scripture. As you read the Bible, other verses you are more familiar with will come to mind. This method of Bible study that God instructs us to use in Isaiah 28:10 will make you a well-rounded, balanced Bible student. The Holy Spirit will help you make connections between Bible passages. Studying the Bible will stretch, challenge, and grow your intellect like nothing else, because it’s the living word of God.
Prayerfully reflect on what you read. Take time to seek God in prayer in asking how what you have learned applies to your life. Reflect upon the principles He is teaching you. Ask the Lord to reveal to you things in your life that are not in harmony with His will, and then ask God for power to live up to His high and holy standard.
As you launch out in the adventure of studying your Bible, don’t expect instant straight A’s. Healthy growth is steady. But rest assured, as you set aside time in your day to spend time in God’s presence reading His word, you will be blessed with great results, just like Angel was. Today Dr. Angel Hernandez is a professor of theology at Pacific Union College, where he lives to teach others the power of the Book that transformed his life, unsealing the secret to both straight A’s, and life everlasting!
(Pastor Justin Torossian is the great, great, great grandson of James and Ellen White, co-founders of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. He and his wife Charissa are currently pastoring at Hamilton SDA Church in the NNSW conference)