"And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures."
Have you ever been reading a book with some subject matter that might be a little over your head and realized that you had no idea what it was you just read? The words were just black symbols on a white page. Maybe you read all of the words but the thought behind them made no sense to you. You stop, shake your head, and begin to read it all again very slowly hoping that this time it makes some sense.
One of the most common excuses that people give for reading the Bible is that they don't understand it. There are a number of reasons that this could be true. Some people just have trouble focusing long enough on a particular passage. Some blame their education level for their lack of understanding. Others feel that the version they are reading is just too complex for them to understand. Whatever the reason and however legitimate it might be, there is a clear formula for how to overcome this problem. This formula is not complex; it is not really even a formula. It is an answer from the Word of God: pray. James said that if any one lacks wisdom he should ask God for it.
Too often when we get frustrated in this area of understanding, we complain inwardly and maybe even outwardly about it. We try to comprehend what we are reading with this frustration in the back of our minds until we become exhausted with the whole thing. Finally, we just give up. We feel like something is wrong with us. We think that we are the only ones that do not get it, and we feel for lack of a better word, dumb. We must realize that comprehending and understanding the Word of God is not an intellectual activity but a spiritual one. We need to see the Word with spiritual eyes and not with physical eyes. God gave us the Word so that we could grasp who He is. He gave us the Word, Jesus Christ, to show us what lengths He would go to give us spiritual life. He gave us the Spirit for our learning and our knowledge of the Word. Whenever you are struggling in understanding the Word, call on the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and ask each of them to do their work in your life so that you might comprehend the Scriptures.
As you read the book of Proverbs, you recognize that this subject of understanding was the whole point. Notice these passage from Proverbs 2: Incline your ear to wisdom and your heart to understanding (2); cry out for discernment and lift up your voice for understanding (3); seek her as silver and search for her as hidden treasures (4); then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God (5); the Lord gives wisdom, from His mouth comes knowledge and understanding (6).
May you comprehend the depth, breadth, and height of the Word today!