- “2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.” – Psalm 1:2-3
- “11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” – Psalm 119:11
- “ I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways.” – Psalm 119:15
We’re almost finished with this series, and today we’re getting into being careful about what we think. “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee.” (Proverbs 23:7 (KJV)).
There is a reason studying the Word of God is so important to us as believers, and that’s because the mind is the battlefield where our war between our spirit and our flesh takes place. That’s why Joyce calls it the Battlefield of the Mind. How many of you know that you cannot win a battle if you don’t have any weapons? The Word of God is our weapon for the spiritual battle that’s taking place in our minds. (Ephesians 6:10 – 18).
Today, we read three scriptures about meditating upon the Word of God. Paul exhorts Timothy to “study to show thyself approved” (2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV)). David writes in the Psalms “thy word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against thee”. I could post a dozen or more scriptures just on meditating upon the Word of God. “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.” (Joshua 1:8 (KJV)).
There’s a reason for all this insistence on making sure we have a firm foundational knowledge of the Word of God, and it’s the very reason and mission behind Christlike Ministries Arkansas…we need to know the Word of God because it’s our weapon against the wiles of the devil. I don’t want you to just read my messages, but get out your Bibles and read the scriptures with it. That’s why I post the scriptures. I don’t want you to just take my word for what’s being written…I want you to be an active participant and read the Word of God for self.
This is the mission statement for Christlike Ministries NWA: “To assist believers in developing their relationship with Christ through Bible study, prayer, and worship. Building quality believers so that they can experience God in a more intimate way.” I am thankful that there are people reading my messages, but what’s more important to me than anything else is that you are reading your own Bibles. That you are developing study habits of your own. That’s the heart of this ministry. That’s why we offer free copies of the Our Daily Bread Devotional magazine in addition to posting messages with all the scriptures we use to support our messages.
We believe that the Bible is the absolute authority for everything, and we need it, and we must study it, and get it into our hearts. I was in the United States Marine Corps, and let me tell you that you don’t ever want to go into a battle unarmed because you will not win. Can you imagine what would happen to our troops if we showed up in Iraq without guns? So why in the world do we attempt to fight the wiles of the devil with our own will, our own means, and our own wit? Do you not know that weapons the devil uses to fight with are far superior to ours? Do you not know that using our intellect and understanding to fight the devil is like bringing a knife to a gun fight, and worse…showing up for a battle unarmed.
No, friends we need to be firmly grounded and rooted in the Word of God. I guess there are several of you who maybe needed to hear this exhortation to study your Bibles because I haven’t even been able to get into the real message yet. So, please, friends…take time to study your Bibles. If you don’t know where to start then email me, message me, call me, or text me your contact information, and I will mail you a copy of the Our Daily Bread Devotional. It’s my own personal favorite bible study tool. I’ve used it for over 20 years. It is of vital…VITAL importance that we spend time each day meditating upon the Word of God…it just is…and I hope that above everything you read in today’s message if you take away anything from today’s message…please take away from it that you and I need to be firmly grounded and rooted in the Word of God…especially in this day and age where the Word of God, Christian values, and Biblical principles are under attack from every direction…studying the Bible is absolutely critical to fighting the good fight of faith.
So…get out your Bibles…dust them off…and if you need help knowing what to start go under the “Where to find us” section, write down our contact information, and get a hold of me so I can send you the Our Daily Bread Devotional. I have 25 copies to send, and I can get more. So don’t be afraid to humble yourself, and ask us to send us a very useful bible study resource.
I feel like I just gave today’s message, but I know there’s much more that the Lord has to say to us today, and therefore let’s get right into this. In fact, before I start let’s just take a moment to pray…
Father, I come to You in the name of Jesus, and I ask that You would take over, and allow me to write only by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost. Let Your Word be magnified and glorified. May You get the glory and honor through this message this day. I pray that You would make my fingers that of a pen of a ready writer…only writing the oracles of You, writing through the supernatural ability in which You supply by the Holy Ghost. I pray You give the readers ears to hear what the Holy Spirit would say to them, and that You would again be glorified by this message. I ask this in Jesus name…Amen.
So, let’s get into today’s message shall we?
If you are going to win the battle of the mind and defeat your enemy, where you focus your attention is crucial. The more you meditate on God’s Word, the stronger you’ll become and the more easily you’ll win the victories.
Too many Christians don’t realize the difference between meditating on the Bible and reading the Bible. They like to think that when they read God’s Word, they’re absorbing the deep things of God. Those who meditate on God’s Word are those who think–and think seriously–about what they’re reading.
Yes, indeed friends there is a huge difference between studying and meditating upon the Word of God, and just reading the Bible like any other book. I chose to kind of study the Bible like I used to study out of my text books in school. I have notebooks full of notes from different things I study from. I have a notebook that’s dedicated to just Our Daily Bread messages that I take notes on. I have a couple of notebooks for church services one for Wednesday nights and one for Sunday’s. That way if there’s something I want to study out further from a message I have it. I always write down the scriptures given in support of the message that’s being preached. This is what I mean when I talk about studying the Bible. Just like we had to study in school for answers to tests that were coming up that would grade us based upon the knowledge me retained…in life we are always going to come up against trials, tests, and temptations that will be used to test our knowledge of the Word of God.
How many of you know what it’s like to fail a test in school? Usually we failed a test in school because we didn’t fully have the knowledge of what the test was on. Don’t you know that we fail tests in life because we don’t know how to apply scriptures to the tests in our lives…the difference is there aren’t any open book tests in life, and life doesn’t ever grade us on a curve. If we fail in school there’s opportunities to retake the test sometimes, but when we fail in life sometimes there’s only one opportunity to pass that test…and if we fail it…there are usually major consequences to the failure of that test…isn’t there?
So, it’s great that you read your Bible everyone needs to read it, but it’s vital that we study and meditate upon the Word of God. Why? Because when you look at Ephesians 6:10-18…which is about the Armor of God…do you not ever take the time to notice we have one weapon of offense? The rest of the Armor is designed to protect us in the spiritual battle, but only the Word of God (the Sword of the Spirit) is the offensive weapon. I know you’re probably going to say: “Isn’t prayer an offensive weapon?”. Yes, that’s true it is…but what are you going to pray if you don’t know the Word of God? Prayer is very much an offensive weapon, but the Word of God is the ammunition for that weapon.
In today’s scripture I quoted from Psalm 1. This psalm begins by defining the person who is blessed, and then points out the right actions of that person. The psalmist wrote that those who meditate–and do it day and night–are like productive trees…and everything they do shall prosper.
The psalmist made it quite clear that meditating on God’s Word brings results. As you ponder who God is and what He’s saying to you, you’ll grow. It’s really that simple. If you read about and allow your mind to focus on God’s love and power, that’s what operates in you.
All of the scriptures we have in today’s message say the same theme. That is meditating upon God’s Word brings results. Let’s look again at Joshua 1:8; “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”
Meditating upon God’s Word day and night shall make our way prosperous, and will bring us good success. Is that not what it says? As we study God’s Word it leads us to really understand who God is, why Jesus was necessary, who we are in Christ, what we have in Christ, and how we can use this knowledge, wisdom, and understanding to prosper and have good success in our daily walk with God. I love what Joyce writes here that if we read and allow our mind to focus on God’s love and power…then that’s what is going to operate in our lives. On the other hand, if we allow our mind to focus on situations, circumstances, and the lies of the devil then that is going to be what operates in us.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve had enough of focusing on all the wrong things, and receiving all the wrong results. I’m tired of having my life stolen, killed, and destroyed by the lies of the devil. I’m ready to have my mind totally renewed and transformed by the Word of God (Romans 12:1-2). I am ready to know what the Bible says so that I can use the Word of God to fight off the lies of the devil, and have better results in my life. The only way to get to and receive the abundant life is to make sure that God’s Word does not depart from our lives, our mouths, and our thoughts. I’m not saying we need to take ever waking moment to study God’s Word, but it is important that we do take time everyday to turn off everything around us and focus on reading the Word of God.
One good thing to do…especially when we’re sleeping…is to find away to have an audio version of the Bible read. Not only does that make the atmosphere more peaceful to aid us in sleeping, but our minds are awake and being fed the Word of God. I can tell you that there is a difference when I wake up in the morning or after a nap if I haven’t had some kind of worship music, some kind of good biblical teaching, or just the word of God playing while I’m sleeping. There have been many times I’ve woken up with a song on my mind or in my heart…and that’s what is meant by meditating upon God’s Word. It’s important to get it into us every opportunity we have available to us.
With listening to it while going to sleep…it may take some getting used to, but eventually it does become background noise. However, it’s much better than background noise because it really does help to feed your spirit, and it really does help you go to sleep and wake up in a much more peaceful way.
Conclusion & Prayer:
Be careful what you think about. The more you think about good things, the better your life will seem. The more you think about Jesus Christ and the principles He taught, the more you become like Jesus and the stronger you grow. And as you grow, you win the battle for your mind.
I hope you know that I write this to help you, and not to heap condemnation on you. I agree whole heartedly that it’s of vital importance that we know the Word of God. Especially in this day and age where…as I’ve said already…the Bible is under attack from all sides. It’s under attack from our government, it’s under attack from the world, and sadly it’s also under attack from preachers who are supposed to adhere to and preach the principles in it.
We are most definitely living in those perilous times that Paul told Timothy about in 2 Timothy 3:1-5. We are in the last days, but the key to staying rooted is by getting more passionate and serious about studying our Bibles. How in the world can we stand up against those who are coming against the Bible if we don’t know what’s in it?
So, I hope that if you get nothing else from today’s message you get the understanding that just reading your bible along with these messages aren’t enough. Meditating upon something requires time, and really digging into it. Think back to the days that you were in school like I have, and realize that we need to study the bible the same way we studied from our school books…that’s the only way we are going to know what to pray, what we believe, and how to fight the battle that’s going on not just in our minds…but in the world.
For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart. – Hebrews 4:12 (AMP)
This verse in Hebrews came to mind as I was getting ready to close this message, and I wanted to post it so that you would know just how important to us the Word of God is…and what it does.
So…get out your Bibles, dust them off, and if you haven’t already don’t just read it…study it…and if you need help in knowing where to start please contact us with your mailing address so we can get a copy of the Our Daily Bread to you…it’s free of charge…and it’s one of my own personal favorite bible study tools.
Pray: Lord God, help me to think about the things that honor You. Fill my life with a hunger for more of You and Your Word so that in everything I may prosper. I ask this through Jesus Christ. Amen.
Amen…fill my life with a hunger for more of You and Your Word so that in everything I may prosper. Hallelujah! That’s the cry of my heart. More of You and more of Your Word. More of a burning passion for Your Word. In Jesus’ name…Amen!