I had my eureka moment while reading a very Christian book, "Old Testament Survey: The Messages, Form, and Background of the Old Testament", edited by Lasor, Hubbard, and Bush, published by Eerdmans, 1996. Its date show you how late in my life I came to this moment.
While I was studying the book, I wondered why the articles were so focused on events contemporary with the writers. The thoughts flooded in but I struggled against them: Why should anyone take any interest in the circumstances when this is God's book? But I could not stem the flow and I remember the moment when I could not fight the thought that I should be looking at the Bible from the outside. I discovered that it was critical to learn about the people of this Late Iron Age period and their subsequent editors, their idioms, understandings, politics (priests versus the royal household, between various groups of priests, etc.), the illiteracy (and polytheism) of the populace, that I was reading the views of only one side (propaganda), and so on. I then extended this to my reading of the New Testament documents, and the history of their writing and compilation.
Regarding the writing of the OT, the most significant event was the neo-Babylonian period, and regarding the editing the most important period is the Perian era. Regarding interpretation: include an understanding of Pesher. The term comes mainly from the Dead Sea community, who saw Scriptures being fulfilled in them. This is familiar to those who know the teachings of the Watchtower Society, who see Scripture fulfilled in them. Jesus did the same. Basically it means "this is that", ignoring the circumstance of the original context and applying the words as relating to contemporary events.
Yes, the Bible does give comfort to many. Likewise, religion helps many cope with the vagaries and pressures of life. If that helps, they should continue. Similarly, when the Bible raises stress and concern (Armageddon), family breakdowns, control of mind and living, then reliance on it should be reassessed. When religion fails to help people reconcile with current events near and far, they rationalise this by saying "God works in mysterious ways". When you look at the history of humanity, do you see religion bringing peace, or conflict and war?
All the very best with your study and growth,