1 Corinthians 2:12-16
The Bible is God’s revelation of truth, and it is intended for regular use by every believer. The Holy Spirit’s indwelling presence is a necessity since He is the one who makes clear the meaning of the Word. He illuminates the mind of each person who genuinely seeks to know God.
When we read, our Helper opens our understanding to the true meaning of the text so that we can grasp its significance. We never outgrow this need for Him. Even a mature believer with decades of experience meditating on Scripture requires as much revelation as a child who has just received Christ. Not long ago, I had reason to recall this fact as I read a passage I had seen often in my studies. For the very first time, my soul opened wide to these verses, the truth burst in, and I felt immediately energized. Grasping a new truth from the Scriptures gets us excited and inspires us to apply what we have learned. Then, as we integrate one truth into our life, the Spirit of God reveals another in order to make us increasingly like our Savior.
Learning about God and conforming to the image of Jesus Christ are the highest ambitions of Christianity, and we can achieve these goals only by learning and applying scriptural principles. But truth cannot be poured into a dirty heart. Nor can we expect to understand the Bible if we refuse to obey its precepts. If we want the Holy Spirit to reveal biblical meaning, we must ask first for a revelation of our sin. When we repent of the wrongdoing brought to mind by our Helper, our heart opens to His illumination.