Q: What if I fail to read the Scriptures for a time? Will God be displeased with me?
This is a good question. God is a God of love and in no way wants to punish you. If you are seeking to genuinely please Him, He is not looking down on you with a sense of condemnation or judgment, because the Bible says that for those who have trusted in Christ, there is no condemnation.
“Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 8:1)
So put away your fears, if you are a Christian – except a holy and righteous fear and reverence for God, which is always needed otherwise we will become proud and arrogant, and forget God and our need to serve Him! If you are in this state of having a holy fear and reverence for God, and also wanting to please Him, you are in a good place, indeed. In that case, you are in a good position to receive and experience His great love for you, which is so vast and so wonderful, that you could hardly imagine how amazing it is. It is just so awesome, and if you have never experienced His tangible (you can feel it) love before, ask Him to reveal that to you, because it will change you.
Under the condition that you are doing your very best to serve God, therefore, will God be displeased with you if you don’t read the Scriptures for a time? I think the answer to that is as follows (I’m trying to be very careful here, because I don’t think it’s a particularly easy answer!).
1. First, in this circumstance (you being a child of God and having committed your life to Him), God is not displeased with you in the sense that He looks down on you with any sense of condemnation. He is your Father, and your Father loves you! Get a hold of that love, because it is a real love.
2. Second, God knows that paying attention to His word is a good and essential thing, if you are going to do well. You may be able to “leave it” for a day or even longer because you are devoting yourself to prayer, instead, and have already memorized or become intimately familiar with many portions of the word of God through personal studies. I believe you will be “okay” to pray without reading the word of God for a time, but the problem is (and this is a real problem) that one of God’s chief means to speak to His people is via reading and studying the word of God daily (it has, at least, been my own personal experience and I believe it is quite justified by reading the word of God).
Daniel prayed on his knees three times a day. There is no indication that he actually read the Scriptures three times a day. So, arguing from this basis, you do not need to read the word of God daily. I believe that “hiding” the word of God “in your heart” (through memorization of the Scriptures, which I would encourage you to do) enables you to meditate on the word of God daily, even if you do not necessarily read it. Hence, the injunction in Psalm 1 to meditate on God’s word.
“How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked,
Nor stand in the path of sinners,
Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!
But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
And in His law he meditates day and night.” (Psalm 1:1-2)
Should Christians who have the printed word of God today read it daily? If possible, I believe they should, and will be blessed in the process as God uses that word to speak to them.
All of this presupposes that you are intent on obeying the voice of the Lord, as He speaks to you in your daily meditations. To read and meditate on the word of God but not respond to His promptings would be foolish and terribly unwise. A person who read the Scriptures in this way could even end up in Hell, because they were not sincere about their faith.
“Therefore bear fruit in keeping with repentance” (Matthew 3:8)
Jesus said, “I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:3)