If you desire to read the scripture in such a manner as may most
effectually answer this end, would it not be advisable,
To set apart a little time, if you can, every
morning and evening for that purpose?
At each time if you have leisure, to read a chapter
out of the Old, and one out of the New Testament: if you cannot
do this, to take a single chapter, or a part of one?
To read this with a single eye, to know the whole will
of God, and a fixt resolution to do it? In order to know his
will, you should,
Have a constant eye to the analogy of faith; the
connexion and harmony there is between those grand, fundamental
doctrines, Original Sin, Justification by Faith, the New Birth,
Inward and Outward Holiness.
Serious and earnest prayer should be constantly used,
before we consult the oracles of God, seeing "scripture can only
be understood thro' the same Spirit whereby it was given." Our
reading should likewise be closed with prayer, that what we read
may be written on our hearts.
It might also be of use, if while we read, we were
frequently to pause, and examine ourselves by what we read, both
with regard to our hearts, and lives. This would furnish us with
matter of praise, where we found God had enabled us to conform
to his blessed will, and matter of humiliation and prayer, where
we were conscious of having fallen short.
And whatever light you then receive, should be used to the
uttermost, and that immediately. Let there be no delay. Whatever you
resolve, begin to execute the first moment you can. So shall you
find this word to be indeed the power of God unto present and