“… and the Hebrew word for that is actually rachats, which means to bathe oneself!”
(Cue the chorus of “oh”s and of other excited onomatopoeiae.)
In a matter of five minutes, I changed how a dozen people approached an entire section of Levitical law and what it meant in their lives. That’s right, I’m a life-changer. It’s what I get for my hours of study and digging through archaic and obscure resources on topics that only a few people have ever cared about.
That’s how the scenario plays out in my head, anyway. It has yet to be exactly like that, but we’ll get there someday. I like to teach. I like to tell stories. I love the idea of being an influence in some one’s life and helping them think differently than before, especially if it brings them closer to God or helps them break free from the wrong thinking they’ve been indoctrinated with (I’m such a rebel).
Motivation like this helps me study. Understanding that I can communicate everything I learn and try to get people to think like I do is kind of a big deal for me. If I didn’t feel this way, then I wouldn’t study, I guarantee it. Studying is only kind of fun. The real benefit is what I get to do with my knowledge. The Bible makes a few indictments about human nature and our tendency to do something because we see the value in it.
Matthew 13:44 says,
The Kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went away and sold everything he had and bought it.
He wouldn’t have made a huge sacrifice if the kingdom of heaven wasn’t bloody AWESOME! People do what we do because we find value in it. If something doesn’t benefit us or our cause, then many believe it’s not worth doing. In genesis 29, Jacob discovers the sexy and alluring shepherdess, Rachel. I’ve always heard that shepherds smelled like sheep and looked like crap because they hung out with sheep all the time, so his assessment of the woman seems questionable in my mind. Regardless, he wanted to be with her so badly that he made a deal with Rachel’s father Laban that he’d work seven years to earn her as his wife.
Sounds kind of like college for some people.
At the end of seven years, Jacob demanded his wife, because he wanted to hit that (Read it yourself, he was pretty forward with his intentions at that point). Laban had other plans with his daughters though and switched Rachel out for Leah. Jacob was apparently extremely impatient and couldn’t keep his pants on because he didn’t figure out what had happened until he had consummated his marriage with the wrong girl!
I’d be super-pissed.
Anyways, Jacob got to marry the girl he wanted to, but had to work another seven years to pay her father off for Rachel, too.
How does this have anything to do with study, Jake?
Again, we engage in certain activities for the return they offer. They might be memories, a diploma, or bragging rights, but we have some motivation for whatever we do. Jacob worked for an awful person for fourteen years because he really thought his daughter was awesome. If you have a difficult time getting into God’s word or reading some of the texts written by any Christian, then you need to find a motivating return on the deal. I read my Bible to get to know God, but if I’m being honest, I also do it to have something to talk or blog about and make me look pretty bomb while I do it.