No. 8

Prussian born Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), considered by many to be the foremost philosopher of the modern period, once said: "The Bible is the greatest benefit which the human race has ever experienced." To have the Bible and yet not read it would be like going without food for several days, showing up at a banquet and saying, "I'm not hungry." For some, the discovery of the eternal truths contained in the Bible comes early in life, for others, it comes much later. Some people never make this discovery, and as a result they miss the benefits of knowing the God of the Bible in a personal way. As I look back over my own life, one of my biggest regrets is that I didn't discover what was really in the Bible until a good portion of the race had already been run.
About fourteen years ago, after agreeing to teach a boy's Sunday school class, I made the decision to read the Bible through once each year and pleased to say, I'm fulfilling that commitment. Until I asked the Holy Spirit to guide and control my thinking and my life, I never dreamed the Bible was so rich and so exciting! Because I'm so excited about the Bible, I just wanted to share an article, titled, "Who Should Read The Bible" that might be of value to you.
"Who should read the Bible? The young: to learn how to live. The old: to know humility. The rich: for compassion. The poor: for comfort. The dreamer: for enchantment. The practical: for counsel. The weak: for strength. The strong: for direction. The haughty: for warning. The humble: for exaltation. The troubled: for peace. The weary: for rest. The sinner: for salvation. The doubting: for assurance. All Christians: for guidance."
When I read this the first time, I came to the conclusion that it pretty well covers the waterfront. It talked about the young, the old, the ignorant, the learned, the rich, the poor, the dreamer, the practical, the weak, the strong, the haughty, the humble, the troubled, the weary, the sinner and all Christians. Surely you can see yourself in there somewhere -- I can see me, several times. I'll confess that I've learned that I need the Bible and its wisdom and encouragement each day of my life. You know, for any of us to be saved, we must first admit we are lost. Whether you read the Bible or not, there is good reason why this book is the all time best seller. It contains truth, inspiration and guidance that can give our lives meaning, purpose and hope that no other source can give. I stand in awe of its power. Isn't it great to know that God loves us and we are very precious to Him? That's what it says in the Bible!
Now, I'm not naive and I realize that many people reading this column do not believe in God or the Bible and I respect every person's right to think and believe as they choose. In my own personal life however, as a Christian I am willing to take a stand for Jesus Christ and the Bible. I might add, this is consistent with our nation's heritage. One study found that of 15,000 writings by the Founding Fathers included in newspaper articles, pamphlets, books, monographs, and other documents, 94% of all quotes either directly or indirectly cited the Bible. Fifty two of the 55 framers of the Constitution were avowed Christians.
While Iãm certainly not a preacher, in these days when civility is taking a back seat, we must return to the Biblical standards of our forefathers. From their hearts flowed the documents and structures to form the foundations of this great nation. Over the coming years we can do this and every American will be richer for it. (EDITOR'S NOTE: Jim Davidson is a motivational speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034.)