How Reading the Bible Can Make You Spiritually Sick

I have a son who won't eat anything.

He'll only eat four things consistently: pancakes, pepperoni pizza, eggs (scrambled), and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

Darwin Bell (CC)

He doesn't like ice cream (even though he thinks he does). He doesn't like french fries. What he will eat one day, he may turn his nose up at the next.

Sometimes our approach to the Word is just like a 6-year-old’s eating habits.

We have our favorite passages and we refuse to venture outside of those boundaries. These passages are our peanut butter and jellies; the Old Testament might as well be a plate of broccoli.

Don't get me wrong: a new Christian shouldn't start reading the genealogies and laws of purification. Your approach depends on your spiritual age. Babies need milk—solid food will only harm them. Paul writes about the milk of the Word:

You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. Hebrews 5:12b-14

You see what he's saying? You can't understand righteousness until you start consuming solid food. Unfortunately, too many Christians never graduate from the teat. Milk is great, but at some point you must pick up a fork and shove down some broccoli.

How to Get a Happy Plate

Most adults who enjoy vegetables didn’t like them as a kid. But you know what happens when you only eat pizza, pancakes, and peanut butter? You get sick.

If you only read your favorite passages and ignore the rest, your theology gets screwed up. You don’t get a complete picture of God. How many people formed cults based solely on a few passages?

Timothy tells us that "all Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work" (2 Tim. 3:16-17).

Do you believe that?

2003 study suggests kids might have to try a new food up to twenty times before accepting it. What if the same applies to the Word?


One of my favorite books of the Bible is Numbers.

I know. I’m a geek. 

But it’s an amazing book. It’s so rich and full of drama. Moses and God get really tight. Baalam's donkey mouths off to him. The earth swallows some insurrectionists.

Numbers used to be my broccoli. I used to get done reading Exodus and then go straight to the gospels. But then I read it a few times, and some things started to click.

I still have my broccolis.

I have always struggled reading through Jeremiah. It confuses me. It is difficult for me to follow, and therefore bores me. But I still press through it. And you know what? This last time I read it, it made more sense than ever before.

I know this makes reading God’s Word sound like a chore. And quite honestly sometimes it is. But let me ask you this: if you wanted to lose weight in order to have an amazing bod, do you think that you’d never have to eat a carrot stick or jog a few miles?

If you want to be the Christian that God wants you to be, it’s going to require work.

Think of the Bible in this way: God, the chef, has prepared a feast for us. It is perfectly balanced nutritionally. All of the courses complement each other. If you skip straight to dessert, you’re going to get sick.

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