"If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you."
What does this verse mean?
The most accepted interpretation is that we have to read our Bible everyday and memorize it and meditate in it because if we don't, we'll all go to hell.
However, reading it everyday for half an hour isn't really "abiding" in anything. If you stayed in your house for only a couple minutes each day- or hey, even an hour or two- you wouldn't be abiding there. You'd be dropping in for a visit every now and again. "Abiding" is defined as "unceasing, unrelenting." To abide somewhere is not a transitory, once-a-day ritual: to abide in something is to have a constant reminder of that thing, to be in it each and every moment.
Now I don't know about you, but I'm not able to read my Bible nonstop. I confess I often spend more time reading other books and blogging/Facebooking than I do reading my Bible. So can it be said that I'm not "abiding" in my Bible?
According to the narrow definition normally imposed, yes. I am not properly abiding in my Bible. But I would argue that "abiding" is much more than mere reading.
Yes, reading and memorization is good. It helps us to know what God wants for us. But a mere head knowledge of something is not actual understanding. For instance, we can know that a hot stovetop will burn us and it will hurt. But unless we have actual understanding of that principle, we cannot understand why we should pull our hands back from the metal surface. Just like that, unless we also have a good understanding of what we read, our reading accomplishes nothing.
It comes down to, not just reading, but instead a moment-by-moment application of what we have read. That is true "abiding"- letting God's Word fill us and direct our actions. We do this by giving earnest thought to what we have read.
Too often it seems, we read a passage than skip on our merry ways, not paying any further attention to what we've read. Sure, we recognize a couple verses- Pastor might have preached on one of them last week- and we think we can pick out a rough meaning. But we don't truly understand it because we haven't actually applied our minds to the task.
Next time you read your Bible, make an earnest effort to try to ferret out the meaning behind the words. What is God telling you? What do you think God's purpose in telling you this is? If it helps, jot it down. But whatever you do, make sure you are applying what God tells you. Only then will you truly "abide" in His Word.
Namárië and 爱於耶穌