By Pastor J. F. Odesola
2. What we have to do with the Bible
If the Bible is, as the hymn suggests, a deep, deep mine full of priceless blessings, our part is to dig down into the mine to search for the great spoil which waits to be uncovered and brought to the surface. This is what the Psalmist delighted in doing; he rejoiced because he was constantly finding “great spoil”. Do we search the scriptures?
Do we read and compare this verse with that verse, and this truth with that truth, as the Bereans did? “They received the Word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether these things were so” (Acts 17:10-11).
Do we meditate upon the truths contained in God’s Word, as the Psalmist did? “My mediation of Him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the Lord” (Psalms 104:34). Or, do we neglect our Bible? Do we read casually or occasionally only when we go to Church?
Wonderful blessings are “hidden’ in God’s Word, but we must search for them. The phrase “findeth great spoil” suggests labour, effort, patience, and then the joy of discovery. This is what is required, and if we will dig deeply and search diligently into this wonderful “mine of truth”, what will be the result? David tells us that the result will be great joy: “I rejoice at Thy Word, as one that findeth great spoil.” Bible reading and study produces great joy
- The result of getting the gold out of the Bible
The result is not only joy, but great joy. David was not only joyful, but he was thrilled with a joy that knew no bounds. It was “joy unspeakable and full of glory” (1 Peter 1:18). Many Christians lack this joy, but all may have it. God wants us to be joyful; and one way in which He makes us joyful is through His Word.
What is this joy David speaks about? It is a three-fold joy.
First, it is a joy of discovery, it is a joy of finding for yourself, of finding hidden treasures. I can think of countless occasions when, as I have been reading my Bible, I have suddenly made a great discovery.
Some glorious truths have almost leaped out of the pages, and my heart was overjoyed, because in communion with the Lord, through His Word, He has shown me something which was previously hidden; indeed, for hours afterwards, I have experienced the glad uplift of experiencing that the joy of the Lord has been my strength (Nehemiah 8:10)
Second, it is the joy of fellowship. It is the joy of fellowshipping with the Lord Himself. This is the wonderful thing about the Bible. When we meditate on it and bow humbly before the Author of the book, we actually commune with Him! As we read and linger over the words, Jesus Himself draws near and afterwards we are able to say:
“Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?” (Luke 24:32)
Third, it is the joy of testimony. When we have found something which is very valuable, we want to tell others about it especially if the something we have found is someone. When we dig deeply into the Bible, we find the Lord Himself; Christ “in all the scriptures” (Luke 24:27), and we want to tell others about Him. Finding Him for ourselves stimulates within us a desire to share Him with others. This is what happened with Andrew when he came to know the Lord for Himself.
And so, the lessons we have learned are these: the Bible is God’s Word; it contains “great spoil”, wonderful treasure, infinite riches; that spoil needs to be dug out; and when it is dug out, it gives great joy to the finder. Will you dig, and dig, and dig, and get the gold out of the Word? If you do this, you will become a joyful, radiant and useful Christian, and everyday will be for you a day of new discoveries as you read and study God’s Word.