The single most important element of scripture study is approaching the scriptures with the Spirit. Often, I’ve thought of the pharisees, Sadducees, and scribes, and I’ve wondered how they knew so much about the Scriptures, but they didn’t recognize Christ – their God.
It’s because they didn’t search the scriptures with the Spirit.
If we don’t utilize the gift and the power of the Holy Ghost, then the same can happen to us in our Study.
After Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery were baptized, Joseph Smith tells,
“…We were filled with the Holy Ghost, and rejoiced in the God of our salvation.
“Our minds being now enlightened, we began to have the scriptures laid open to our understandings, and the true meaning and intention of their more mysterious passages revealed unto us in a manner which we never could attain to previously.”
– Joseph Smith-History 1:73-74
The Spirit helped them to understand scriptures! Of course, they had positive experiences with the scriptures prior to this event; however, once they received the gift of the Holy Ghost, they were able to understand the true meaning and intention of the scriptures. They were able to receive specific revelation and instruction from the Holy Ghost.
If we have been baptized and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, then we, too have been blessed with the constant companionship and Gift of the Holy Ghost. We have the right and privilege to have it as a study aid! And we can use it. So, every time you go to the scriptures, be open-minded, start with a prayer, study with full purpose of heart, have faith in Christ, and have the humility to let the Holy Spirit guide.