The Nine: Practices for becoming a lifetime follower of Jesus

_Think Up_

2 Timothy 3:14-17


– We will be so careful about what we put in our bodies, or in our cars or in our pets, yet remarkably careless about what we put into our one and only mind.

– You, and nobody else is in charge of what you put into your mind. And you alone, are in charge of the quality of the mind you manage.

_The ultimate freedom in human life is freedom not of the body, but freedom of the mind. Your ability to think and to choose your attitude or to set your mind wherever you want in any given set of circumstances is the ultimate human freedom._ Victor Frankl, _Man’s Search for Meaning_

Practice #2: Think Up – Read the Bible

No person can have a great life without a great mind.

No one can have a great mind unless they feed it great thoughts, and there is no greater source of great thoughts in human history than the Bible.

Q: Why read the Bible?

A: It is God-breathed (inspired)

– God uniquely inspired the Scriptures to allow us to learn the great story of human existence and to reveal himself and his character.

– Reading creates faith. It provides guidance. It makes the foolish-wise. It makes the weak-strong, the discouraged-hopeful

– Reading honors God and worries the devil.

– From it, you will learn about your royal pedigree as a child of the King and your eternal destiny as a citizen of heaven.

– In it, you will meet Jesus.

Q: How often should I read it?

A: Daily

– 94% of Americans own a Bible.

– 90% believe it applies to today

– 86% believe it is holy

– Less than 30 % read it.

Think Up: How to Read the Bible



– Read it daily

– Pick a time of day

– Get a translation of the Bible that you like

Two Main Approaches to Bible Translations

Word for Word
(formal equivalence)

Thought for Thought
(dynamic equivalence)

English Standard Version (ESV) New Living Translation (NLT)
New King James Version (NKJV) Contemporary English Version (CEV)

Have a hard time reading? Use an audio bible

– To read an Online Bible in different languages – goto Bible

Download the Bible app (free)


Where do I start?

– Find a reading plan

– Go through the Gospels

-Don’t rush! Let the Bible read you.


– Be curious about what you read.

– Read it slowly and/or aloud

– Read it more than once

“Continue in what you have read.”

– Meditate on it. (Meditation is simply positive worry)

– Make a note of what you don’t understand. Go back later to it or seek help.


The primary purpose of books in the ancient world was not to provide information; it was to produce excellent persons.

“Continue in Scriptures that you’ve known from infancy that are God-breathed and able to make us wise unto salvation through faith in Jesus and useful for all aspects of life

…so that you may be not just equipped but thoroughly equipped…”…for every good work

– Jesus did not teach to increase people’s knowledge but to change people’s lives.

– Read the Bible and Do what it says.

“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” James 1:22

– Do the next right thing


– Respond to God’s Word with your own words.


To a great extent, the kind of mind I cultivate determines the kind of life I live — and the kind of person I become.

– Replace unhealthy thoughts and feelings with God-thoughts as you slow down and read the Scriptures.

Php 4:8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Read the Bible

Do what it says

Do the next right thing