This is our last week of our study of “Living By The Book” At the end of the presentation by Doctor Hendricks, you will be given a passage of Scripture to Observe, Interpret and to Apply. If you will recall, we had 4 learning objectives we wanted to incorporate so as to fully appreciate the value of Application. Remember Application is “How does it Work”.
Our learning objectives are:
- We need to Know
- We need to Relate
- We need to Meditate
- We need to Practice.
Our focus today is the last two points of our Learning Objectives: Meditate and Practice.
- Daniel Webster defines this as: To dwell on anything in thought; to contemplate; to study; to turn or revolve any subject in the mind; appropriately but not exclusively used of pious contemplation, or a consideration of the great truths of religion.
In our culture we often think of some far eastern swami or philosopher.
- The world’s form of meditation tells us to empty ourselves, whereas the Scriptures tell us to fill and feast upon the Word of God.
- Doctor Hendricks wants us to look at several passages of Scripture when we consider meditating on the Word of God.
- Joshua 1:8 “This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success.
- Notice here we are to meditate on the Word of God both day and night. Notice also that when we meditate on the word of God, it makes our lives prosperous. This is not to condone the Wealth and Prosperity Gospel, but rather to make our lives fruitful. The Israelites were about to go into battle and Joshua was giving them this encouragement. We are engaged in a spiritual battle. Battles against our own sin nature and the temptations the world intends to throw at us.
- Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinks within himself, so he is. He says to you, “Eat and drink!” But his heart is not with you.
- Our thought processes are what we are and how we nourish those thoughts are going to directly reflect our walk, our attitude and the fruit we produce.
- Psalm 1:1-2 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.
- Our lives, our behavior, our thoughts need to make an impact on our society. Our behavior needs to be diametrically opposed to the world’s system of conformity. The more we meditate, the greater will be our impact on those around us. Just a note here. America’s problems will not be solved in DC. America can only be saved if we the chosen of God choose to make a difference in the lives of those around us.
- Psalm 119:97 O how I love your law! It is my meditation all the day.
- We like to waste time. How often have we neglected to Study and Meditate on the Word only to replace that study with watching or reading the news? I know I am guilty of that. We should be striving to meditate on God’s word whenever there are free waking moments in our lives.
- Psalm 19:7-11 The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul; The testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the LORD are true; they are righteous altogether. They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them Your servant is warned; In keeping them there is great reward.
- We need to have our minds programmed by the Scripture. Every Computer programmer will tell you that when you your programming is off, the software working with the hardware will not function properly. In other words, “Garbage in = Garbage out.” In order to have our minds programmed by the Word of God, we need to memorize scripture. Remember what Dr. Hendricks told us at the beginning of this series, we will either be squeezed into the world’s mold or we can memorize scripture and allow the Word of God to mold us into the image of our Lord. Scripture memory provides us with the ammunition we need to go into battle with the enemy.
- Part of application in Bible Study is to equip us to do battle. In Ephesians 4, Paul tells us that God gave us teachers to equip us to do the work of the ministry. (Ephesians 4:11-12) Here in the American culture, the office of Pastor-Teacher is more often than not considered to that of an employee and the church to be the employer. When brother Allen feeds us from the Word or God, he is equipping us for battle and to carry out the work of the ministry. When sheep are well fed, they reproduce.
- Biblical Application often provides us with examples to follow.
- Avoiding Sin. The Bible is full of examples of people who succumbed to the temptations of this world. These examples were recorded so we can avoid both the circumstances and outcome of their transgressions.
- Promises to claim. God’s word gives us a multitude of promises within its pages. We do have to be careful though in applying those promises. Make sure the context of the promise is for say a nation or the church and not for the soldier of the Lord.
- Prayers to repeat. Within the pages of scripture there are many prayers offered by many saints who have received their eternal reward. I think specifically of Paul and his deep abiding love for the churches and how often he remembered them in prayer. Prayers for our national leaders. When Paul encouraged prayer for those in authority, (1Timothy 2:1-2), the king at that period in church history was Nero and we all remember how he treated Christians. So when the current administration makes some ruling to curtail freedom of worship, should we not be praying for them rather than complaining about the ruling on Facebook or some other social media?
- Commands to Obey. When Jesus tells us that if we love him, we will keep his commandments, that is not an option for us. When the Bible tells us as men to Love our Wives in the same way Christ loved the church, these are commands. Anything in the Imperative mood in the scriptures are commands and not options.
- Conditions to meet.
- Verses to memorize
- Errors to mark
- Challenges to change
- Your passage to Observe, Interpret and to Apply is: Mathew 28:19-20