“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.” – 2 Timothy 2:15
Dear brothers & sisters,
Thank you for partnering with us in spreading the Word of God here in Sweden. I was born and raised in a family with Christian parents. We attended church every week and I can remember as a teenager my desire to serve the Lord in any way. I wanted to reach people with the gospel, but I felt inadequate to share it. I read and re-read the Bible time after time, and had a hunger to know more about God, but I felt like I just kept forgetting what I was reading and thought that I never would be able to get a good grasp on how to handle the Bible on my own.
Growing up I never had any example or person that could model rightly handling the Word of God. As an adult, the turning point came when I got hold of expository preaching on the internet. I remembered listening to 3-5 sermons a day going through Bible book after Bible book and just craved for more and more. This began a process in which I started to get a grasp of how to handle the Bible on my own.
Without exaggeration I would say that most of the evangelical Christians in my country would be in the same situation as I was, but not only that; I would without hesitation say that the majority of Christian leaders do not have a good grasp on how to handle the Word of God.
Twenty years have gone by since my turning point and this year we had the joy of translating the excellent book Dig deeper: Tools for understanding God’s Word by Nigel Beynon and Andrew Sach. It is a very practical book that gives 17 tools (principles) with many examples and exercises on how to handle the Word of God well. This is one of my favorite books that we’ve made available in Swedish (except books on the gospel) and I have had the privilege to go through it and/or currently am going through it with almost 30 people. This is the book I wish somebody would have put into my hand when I was a teenager and that they would have gone through it with me.
Typically, when I meet up with a person or a group, they would have read part of the book and done the exercises ahead of time, and then we meet to talk about the tools (principles) and to discuss the exercises. I have found it so helpful and it has been such a joy to see how person after person starts to grow in their handling of the word of God. The next step has been or will be that I’m reading through a Bible book and giving the participants as homework to practice the principles at home and then we meet up online or in-person if possible (yes, it’s strange times) to go through and apply it. Then with one group, they have used the tools and other principles to prepare as if they would read the Bible One2One with somebody else. It has been wonderful to see how several of the people that I’ve been reading Dig deeper and a Bible book with have started to get the same turning point as I had 20 years ago.
Give thanks with me that we have this great tool in Swedish and for the joy of seeing believers growing to be able to handle the Bible for themselves and to read and teach it to others. Pray that God would raise up an army of leaders in Sweden like Paul charged Timothy who would “rightly handling the word of truth” (2 Tim 2:15). Also, pray for the spring where we, even more, will focus on equipping the saints in how to handle the Bible.