3 Reasons to Read the Bible First Thing in the Morning

God’s Word has never been more accessible. That’s not to say there aren’t cultures and languages who do not have access to the Bible; there certainly are, and we should be working to change that. It is to say, however, that the majority of us not only have a copy of the Bible in our homes (or several); we have one in our pocket that can be called up at a moment’s notice.

But perhaps with the accessibility of God’s Word comes a neglect of God’s Word. After all, if you’ve never had to pump your own water you’re not likely to appreciate the wonder of turning on a faucet and seeing it come out. Sadly, and despite how easy it is for us at least in North American to read the Bible, we do not. But we should.

And not only should we read God’s Word, but perhaps we should be reading it first thing in the morning. Now to be clear, there is not (at least that I can find) a scriptural mandate for early morning Bible reading. And there may well be life circumstances that prevent one from doing this. That not withstanding, there are certainly examples of Scripture that point to reading the Bible in the morning as a good and wise practice:

  • Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love,
        that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days (Ps. 90:14).
  • Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,
        for I have put my trust in you.
    Show me the way I should go,
        for to you I entrust my life (Ps. 143:8).
  • Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed (Mark 1:35).

In a perfect world, then, we would all make the time first thing in the morning to spend time in God’s Word, meditating and praying through what we find there. But that’s difficult. It’s hard. And it takes alot of discipline and effort to do so. Why is it worth it? Let me suggest three reasons:

1. To reorient our thinking.

Paul reminded us that we should not conform to the pattern of the world. Instead, we should:

…be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Rom. 12:2). 

To put it another way, we should not think about things in the way the world thinks about things. We should have a different view not only of God, but of our circumstances, our families, our work, our provision – everything. Christians must think differently. This is the work of discipleship – it’s not just knowing what to think about this issue or that, but knowing how to think about the whole of life.

In that sense, the Bible serves as a kind of mental marinade for us. We simmer in God’s truth, and as we do, we find our entire thought process being seasoned by that truth. Now of course, that simmering can and should happen at all points during the day. But immersing ourselves in the Bible first thing in the morning orients our thinking from the very beginning of the day. It helps us approach all the various challenges, joys, tasks, and everything else from the right orientation. This reorientation isn’t something that happens one time; rather, it happens every single day. Or at least it should.

2. To prepare for battle.

If you’re a Christian, then you are going to be in a fight today. It’s a fight for hope. For joy. For contentment. For holiness. And much of that battle will happen between our ears. Every day we have a choice about whether we recognize the fight that’s going to come, or rather we just allow it to come upon us unaware.

For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ (2 Cor. 10:3-5).

When we choose to read the Bible first thing in the morning we are doing more than just reading a few verses; we are recognizing the reality of the mental battle we are going to inevitably fight. And we are preparing ourselves with the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God, so that we can indeed be ready for when that mental fight comes. Armed with God’s truth, we can actually fight thoughts of pride, greed, despair, loneliness, and all the rest.

3. To demonstrate priorities.

We know, of course, that reading the Bible ought to be one of our main priorities as Christians. It is the Word of God, given to us, and in it we have God’s revelation of Himself and subsequently the knowledge of what the world is and who we are in it. God’s Word is our treasure:

See how I love your precepts;
    preserve my life, Lord, in accordance with your love.
All your words are true;
    all your righteous laws are eternal.

Rulers persecute me without cause,
    but my heart trembles at your word.
I rejoice in your promise
    like one who finds great spoil (Ps. 119:159-162).

But it’s one thing to say this; it’s another thing to really mean it. And one of the ways we demonstrate the priority of God’s Word is making time for it. And not only making time for it, but making time for it first thing.

This is not just any book we have, friends. This is God’s book. His Word. His promises to us. One of the ways we demonstrate our belief in the nature of God’s Word is by reading it faithfully, and doing it first thing every day.

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