Summary: This series is designed to show people how to gain, or re-gain their fire for God through spiritual disciplines. This message deals with reading the Bible.
“The Cure for the Common Cold” part 1 (Getting warm with your Bible)
Brian A. Moon
Story – I grew up in the church, I mean every time the doors were open I was there… I have heard all kind of great sermons and been to all of the youth camps and came back so “on fire” for God after each one but I never really kept any kind of consistent passion for God until my senior year of high school. I was really having a hard time deciding what to do with my life and one night at youth group I had a pastor friend of mine challenge me to get my nose into my Bible and read. I thanked him for what I thought was lame advice, I knew the Bible, I had gone to church all my life, but that night I opened it up and began to read, and then the next night and then the next night and on and on I went. It was amazing, I found myself actually wanting to read my Bible, and the tough questions I was facing all seemed easy now. I was seeking God through his word and I found an amazing love for him that I had never had before.
So what does that story have to do with anything, well let me ask you a question and then maybe it will make more sense… How many of you have been “on fire” for God at some point in your life, I mean so on fire that you were ready to charge hell with a water pistol…
Only to then find yourself back to normal in a few short weeks or months. All of us have had these times when God was all we could think about, and getting out there and doing some kind of ministry was all we wanted to do. It might have been that initial salvation process in our life, or maybe a youth camp, or mission trip, or some powerful church service or event, but we were “on fire”!!! Tonight we begin a new series called “The Cure for the Common Cold” and no, we are not going to be talking about how to cure a virus that causes us to sniff and cough, But instead we are going to tackle that virus that causes us to lose that fire and passion for God. How do we keep that fire that burns for God on these special events to stay all year round? This is what we are going to be talking about for the next 4 weeks. The answer to our dilemma might be found in the book of Revelation in the New Testament. Some quick background into this verse reveals that John, the author of this book, is writing down a vision from God and records this message for a church in Ephesus:
Revelation 2:4 – 5 “But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember then from what you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first.” NRSV (italics mine)
Notice that last part, “and do the works you did at first.” You see this church had lost its love for God that it once had, much like the problem we have encountered from time to time, and look at the solution there, They were to do the works, or things, that they did when they were first discovering this love for God. Now fast forward to us today, when we find ourselves not so hot for God we should go back to certain things that we did in the beginning, or should have done. Things like reading our Bibles, praying, giving of ourselves, and hanging out with other believers. These are known as spiritual disciplines and just like an athlete trains, these are our tools for training. The result will be a passion and fire for God that will last! The first thing we are going to look at is reading our Bibles. Some of us have grown up in the church and have a clue as to what this book is that people call the Bible, And some of us have no clue as to what the Bible really is, all we know is second hand information. Even some of you that have grown up in the church may only have second hand information about the Bible; you might not have ever picked one up for yourself in your life. But it does not matter, as of tonight we are all on equal ground, we all have something we can learn about the Bible!
Some of you may be thinking, “Oh great we are going to be talking about the Bible, it is so boring…” In fact a Bible publishing company did a survey to see why Americans did not read the Bible and the results were: