The reading of Scripture

The canonical scriptures of the Old and New Testament are basic to christianity as the divine revelation. As such they are at the heart of the worship of God.

God speaks to men through the scriptures as they are read and preached. As God alone is the object of worship, so he alone should determine the character of our response to him through his own Word.

Because the faith once delivered is founded upon the whole Bible, both Testaments should be used for reading. A balanced scheme for covering the whole Bible should be aimed at, although some passages may be considered less suitable for public reading than others due to their obscurity. The actual choice of readings, such matters as whether passages from both Testaments should be read at each service and how long a reading should be, should be left to the discretion of the minister. It seems to us that the excellencies of the Authorised Version recommend its continued use.

The scriptures should be read in public prayerfully and in a manner becoming their character as God’s Word. The reading should be taken with reverence and dignity. The reader should desire that he himself may feel the power of the Word and that the hearers may feel the same.

Due regard should be given to the exact meaning so that the true sense may be conveyed to, and understood by, all who hear. Sincerity of heart, concentration of mind and singleness of purpose will help to produce clear expression.

Neh. 8:8.

Every one should be encouraged to have his own Bible, to read it privately and to follow the scriptures read during the service.