Last week, the Gospel Coalition posted this terrific article by Jen Wilkin. She writes of the frequent confession she hears that maddens but no longer surprises her:
I’ve been in church for years, but no one has taught me to study my Bible until now.
She goes on to reflect:
We continue to tell people this is what you should believe about marriage and this is what you need to know about doctrine and this is what your idolatry looks like. But because we never train them in the Scriptures, they have no framework to attach these exhortations to beyond their church membership or their pastor’s personality or their group leader’s opinion. More importantly, they have no plumb line to measure these exhortations against. It never occurs to them to disagree with what they are being taught because they cannot distinguish between our interpretation of Scripture and Scripture itself, having little to no firsthand knowledge of what it says.
And they’ve been in church for years.
Yes! And then:
We must teach the Bible. Please hear me. We must teach the Bible, and we must do so in such a way that those sitting under our teaching learn to feed themselves rather than rely solely on us to feed them. We cannot assume that our people know the first thing about where to start or how to proceed. It is not sufficient to send them a link to a reading plan or a study method. It is our job to give them good tools and to model how to use them. There is a reason many love Jesus Calling more than they love the Gospel of John. If we equip them with the greater thing, they will lose their desire for the lesser thing.
Wilkin writes of women’s Bible studies, but her points are equally valid for either gender. I wish I could quote the entire article for you, but the best I can do is to send you over to TGC’s site.