Scripture Can Produce Tears of Joy and of Sorrow
A minister in Africa passed out Bibles to his people so they could have their own copy and read Scripture in their native tongue. He said that “I see many believers crying and praying as they read the Word.”
This report makes my heart soar with joy, yet at the same time it gives me pause. I ask myself, “When does reading the Bible make you cry?”
Yes, I read and study God’s Word often. The Scripture fills me, teaches me about God, and draws me closer to him. But does it ever make me weep? I fear not.
Tears can come in two forms. We can have tears of joy. And we can have tears of remorse. Scripture can accomplish both. Scripture should accomplish both. But does reading the Bible make you cry?
Tears of Joy
It’s hard for me to conceive of not having a Bible. I have a shelf full of them. I can also access Scripture online through BibleGateway.com and the YouVersion app.
I use BibleGateway almost daily and YouVersion at church on most Sundays. My printed copies of the Bible don’t get that much use anymore. I take it for granted to have the biblical text readily available to me—anytime, anywhere.
But what if I didn’t have access online and didn’t own a copy of the Bible, not even one? The only way I could hear the Word of God would be for someone to read it to me.
I can imagine being spiritually hungry and not having my own Bible to read. I envision someone sliding a copy of the Scriptures into my hands. Tears well up in my eyes as I open its pages and began to read.
Does reading the Bible make you cry tears of joy?
Tears of Sorrow
Of course, the biblical text can also confront us. When this occurs, we have another reason to weep. This time it’s tears of sorrow. Though not pleasant, Scripture can bring about repentance. The most important one is to turn to Jesus and follow him as his disciple.
Yet the Bible can also convict us of a need to make changes in our life. This could be to stop doing something we shouldn’t do or start doing something we should.
These changes aren’t an effort to get God’s attention or to earn anything from him, but the result of us wanting to better offer our life as an act of worship in appreciation for what he’s done for us.
The book of Nehemiah records a time when the people hear Scripture read and explained to them by the Levites. The words convict them, and they weep and mourn over their many shortcomings (Nehemiah 8:7-9).
Does reading the Bible make you cry tears of sorrow?
Reading the Bible
We should praise God for providing us with his written Word. For those of us with ready access to the Bible, we should pause to appreciate him for providing it to us—even to the point of producing tears of joy. God is good and Scripture confirms this.
As we read and study the Bible, we should invite the Holy Spirit to speak to us and teach us. Sometimes his insights will produce joy and other times we may face a tearful conviction for change.
These are the reasons why we should read the Bible.
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.
Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.