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  • Writer's pictureVic Bernales

Reading Books


Reading literature, especially books, is still being used by the Lord in bringing people to a saving knowledge of Him. I have heard stories of conversion, for example, through the ministry of Gideons International.


One story was told of a businessman who was on a trip. While staying in a hotel he was led to read a Gideons Bible inside his room. The Spirit used the words he was reading and convict him of his sin leading him to repent and to turn to Christ for salvation.


Many other stories like this have been related. The power of the written Word to touch people's lives and to change their direction in life is a common story among professionals who are involved in ministries like the Gideons'.


In the Lord's sovereign wisdom, He is able to call people to Himself through reading the Bible or reading books that explain His glorious plan of redemption in Christ.


I know a dear friend who was saved from his sin and was enlightened of God's saving plan through reading John R. W. Stott's "Basic Christianity."


For us who are committed believers of Jesus Christ, reading the Bible and browsing books, even reading long FB posts like this 😉, are normal daily activities.


But one of the things we Christians need to be committed to, says John Piper, "besides reading, is giving away solid books to those who might read them, but would never buy them."


Piper adds, "The ripple effect is incalculable. Consider this illustration:


'A book by Richard Sibbes, one of the choicest of the Puritan writers, was read by Richard Baxter, who was greatly blessed by it. Baxter then wrote his 'Call to the Unconverted' which deeply influenced Philip Doddridge, who in turn wrote 'The Rise and Progress of Religion in the Soul'. This brought the young William Wilberforce, subsequent English statesman and foe of slavery, to serious thoughts of eternity...'" (John Piper, quoting from Ernest Reisinger's article 'Every Christian a Publisher,' from “Free Grace Broadcaster,” Issue 51, Winter, 1995, 18).


Piper continues, "It seems to me that in a literate culture like ours, where most of us know how to read and where books are available, the Biblical mandate is: keep on reading what will open the Holy Scriptures to you more and more" (John Piper, from his Banner of Truth magazine article ‘Some Thoughts On Reading,’ February 2, 2010).


This is something that we Christians must consider doing. Daniel Webster once said, "If religious books are not widely circulated among the masses in this country, I do not know what is going to become of us as a nation."


"If truth be not diffused," Webster continued, "error will be; if God and His Word are not known and received, the devil and his works will gain the ascendancy; if the evangelical volume does not reach every hamlet, the pages of a corrupt and licentious literature will" (Quoted in Ernest Reisinger's 'Every Christian a Publisher,' from “Free Grace Broadcaster,” Issue 51, Winter, 1995, 17).

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