How to Profit from Reading the Bible

How to take profit in reading of the holy Scriptures.

Whosoever mindeth to take profit by reading Scriptures, must:

1. Earnestly and usually pray unto God that he will vouchsafe to:

   a. Teach the way of his statutes.
   b. Give understanding.
   c. Direct in the path of his commandments.
   d. At the least twice every day this exercise be kept.
   e. Ps.119

2. Diligently keep such order of reading the scriptures and prayer as may stand with his calling and state of life: So that
   a. The time once appointed hereunto after a good entry, be no otherwise employed.
   b. Superstition be avoided.
   c. At one other time that be done, which is left undone at any time.
   d. Deut.ll:19; Luke 9:62; Isa. 29:36 and Eph. 5:16.

3. Understand to what end and purpose the Scriptures serve, which were written, to:
   a. Teach, that we may learn truth.
   b. Improve, that we may be kept from error.
   c. Correct, that we may be driven from vice.
   d. Instruct, that we may be settled in the way of well doing.
   e. Comfort, that in trouble we may be confirmed in patient hope.
   f. 2 Tim. 3:16, 17 and Rom. 15:4.

4. Remember that Scriptures contain matter concerning
   a. Religion and the right worshiping of God as
      i. Faith in one God
         1. Father.
         2. Son.
         3. Holy Ghost.
      ii. The state of mankind by
         1. Creation.
         2. fall and sin.
         3. regeneration in Christ.
      iii. The Church and the government thereof.
         1. Before Christ
         2. Since Christ.
      iv. The word of God written in the Testament
         1. Old.
         2. New.
      v. Sacraments
         1. Before Christ.
         2. Since Christ.
      vi. The end and general judgment of the
         1. Good.
         2. Wicked.
   b. Commonwealths and government of people, by
      i. Magistrates
         1. Good.
         2. Evil.
      ii. Peace and war, Prosperity and plagues
      iii. Subjects
         1. Quiet.
         2. Disordered.
   c. Families and things that belong to households, in which are
      i. Husbands, Wives, Parents, Children, Masters, Servants.
         1. Godly blessed.
         2. Ungodly plagued.
   d. The private doings of every man in
      i. Wisdom and folly.
      ii. Love and hatred.
      iii. Soberness and incontinency. iv. Mirth and sorrow.
      v. Speech and silence.
      vi. Pride and humility.
      vii. Covetousness and liberality.
   e. The common life of all men as
      i. Riches, poverry.
      ii. Nobility.
      iii. Favor.
      iv. Labor and idleness.

5. Refuse all sense of Scripture contrary to the
   a. Articles of Christian faith, contained in the common Creed.
   b. First and second table of God’s commandments.

6. Mark and consider the
   a. Coherence of the text, how it hangeth together.
   b. Course of times and ages, with such thing as belong unto them.
   c. Manner of speech proper to the Scriptures.
   d. Agreement that one place of Scripture hath with another, whereby that which seemeth dark in one is made easy in another.

7. Take opportunity to
   a. Read interpreters, if he be able.
   b. Confer with such as can open the Scriptures, Acts 8:30, 31, etc.
   c. Hear preaching and to prove by the Scriptures that which is taught, Acts 17:11.


The preceding admonition, from the 1599 Geneva Bible (the source copy for this edition), has been itself updated in accordance with standards we employed with the full Bible text and its annotations, as explained in the Preface. -Editor

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Copyright 2007, Tolle Lege Press.. Used by permission