As I said in part one, when our interaction with Scripture doesn’t lead us into an encounter with Jesus, we risk becoming religious instead of Christ-like.
We’ve already looked at the S.O.A.P. method using the whole Bible. This particular practice focuses in on the words of Jesus.
Undergoing the Bible
This comes from Brad Jersak, what he calls “Undergoing the Bible.” To “undergo” means to come under what a passage is saying and let it deal with your heart, especially the verses you don’t like.
Undergoing Scripture is extremely effective in bringing our heart into sync with Jesus’ heart. I had personally done something similar before, but I love how Jersak does it. I’ll let him explain his process in the following clip. I’ve used this video once before, but this time I’ve set it for the last six minutes where he explains the process. Please watch this short clip and we’ll talk about it afterwards.
As you heard on the clip, this method is very simple:
Read the “red” (Jesus’ words) until you come to a verse you don’t like (be honest).
Stay there and “undergo” the verse until you love it! Remember, you’re not using commentary or study aids to come up with a pat answer. You’re letting the verse penetrate what’s going on in your heart and letting Jesus speak to you about it.
For greater long-term effectiveness, I would add that you journal your results (see part two for why).
For instance, I may start reading Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) and come to the following verse:
38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. (Matt.5:38-39 NKJV)
EXAMPLE: Okay, I don’t like this verse! It sounds to me like Jesus is telling me that I should be a doormat for people to just walk all over me. What if someone were to break into my house? Am I supposed to just let them do whatever they want? Aren’t I supposed to protect my family?
You get the idea.
This is undergoing Scripture. Rather than ignoring Jesus, or dismissing what He tells us to do, we are dealing honestly with it, wrestling with it and letting Jesus expose our heart in the process. In my example, could it be that I’m struggling with trust or security issues? I don’t know, I’ll need to undergo it to find out.
You see, it’s easy to be a “Bible believer” and say you love Jesus, yet ignore the parts where He says to forgive those who’ve hurt you, to love our enemies, to not retaliate when someone “slaps” you, or give to anyone to asks you, or don’t judge….
It’s in this place in our hearts where we find out if we’re actually following Him.
There’s nothing more effective than “reading the red” and undergoing it for our personal transformation. Rather than simply being Bible-believing Christians, we become followers of Jesus (and there can be a difference).
Give it a try for 30 days and see what happens. I dare you. 🙂