“For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” -Romans 15:4 (NIV)
I often cringe when I hear people say that studying history is boring and irrelevant. While historians are sometimes accused of having immersed themselves in the past to the point that they have disconnected themselves from the present, history itself is meant to be a guide. A good scholar of history knows how to take the lessons of the past and apply them to the present in the hopes of constructing a better future. To work to prevent the horrors of the past from occurring again, we must first understand how and why they came about. Conversely, what was good and noble of the past should be reclaimed and appropriately implemented within the context of the modern age. An understanding of history will help us make sense of the world around us; where it has been and where it is going.
The Word of God, is the best history textbook available to man. Its pages bear witness to the story of humanity from the time God created us and our descent into wickedness, to Christ’s redemptive sacrifice on the cross and the hope we have through Him by identifying with His death and resurrection. Its characters are real people living in real places at real points in human history. Even historians outside the Christian tradition attest to the veracity of the Scriptures! Throughout the Bible we are provided with examples of people who chose to remain within the will of God and those who chose to remain outside; along with the consequences of their respective decisions. But unless we have personally chosen to apply the truths of the Bible to our lives, then our knowledge of the Scriptures is meaningless. Only when we have allowed the Spirit of Christ to reside in our hearts and have submitted our understanding to His perfect wisdom will He be able to teach us through His Word. With Him as our Guide, we will know how to live according to His righteousness and dwell in the hope of being ultimately restored through Him.
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.