Today’s Scripture: “1 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! 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night.” Psalm 1:1-2
Well, here we are with yet another set of scriptures that take about meditating upon the Word of God day and night. There really must be something to this daily meditation upon the Word of God because we’ve read Jesus say we’re to “search the scriptures daily”, we’ve read it in Acts how with a readiness of mind we’re to search the scriptures daily, we just read Joshua 1:8 yesterday, and today we read here in Psalm 1:1-2 again.
So, if there’s all this insistence upon searching the scriptures daily, meditation upon the book of the law day and night, and studying to show ourselves approved. Why don’t we? Well, I am going to talk about that in today’s message…Delighting in His Word.
Whenever I hear people talk about why they don’t read the Bible as “often as they’d like to or should” there are two common responses. The first one is that they just don’t know where to start. I’ve offered time and time again to send them a free complimentary copy of my own personal Bible devotional magazine, but I’ve yet to have anyone contact me for it. It’s free. It costs me money to mail it, but once they have it they can send in a card to subscribe to it for free. The second objection or reason people don’t like to read the Bible is they say that it’s “too difficult to understand”. So, in this message I’m going to deal with these two excuses, and see where we go from there.
- I don’t know where to start: This excuse is the easiest to use because what the person giving this excuse is really saying is I don’t really care enough to read it. Listen, if you’re expecting me to coddle you, and blow smoke up your rear end…you’re following the wrong ministry. I don’t know where to start coupled with the refusal to accept a free copy of RBC Ministries daily Bible devotional Our Daily Bread tells me that if you really wanted to know where to start, and you really wanted to read your Bible…then you would give me your contact information so I can send you a FREE COPY. Like I just said, it’s going to cost me money to send it, but it’s going to cost you nothing to receive it, and start using it. In fact, there is a subscription card on the inside of it that you can send them, and they will then start sending it directly to you FREE OF CHARGE. The Our Daily Bread is about as basic of a Bible devotional as you can get. It’s actually my own personal favorite Bible devotional to use, and I’ve used it for 25 years. However, the I don’t know where to start excuse is really you saying I just don’t feel like reading the Bible is worth my time. Thus, that explains why 3 out of 4 Christians don’t read the Bible on a daily basis…they don’t know where to start so they don’t want to.
- It’s too hard to understand: This excuse is used because they have apparently been living under a rock because there are many other versions out there these days then the original King James Version. The majority of the people who use this excuse use the fact that they don’t understand the King James Version. This excuse also translates into they don’t understand it so they don’t care to try to understand it. They would rather have someone like Joel Osteen tell them what they believe the Bible says then to actually take the time to go to a Christian Bookstore, look for a version of the Bible they would understand, and start studying the Bible for themselves so that they’d know that what Joel Osteen is preaching is a lie straight from the pits of hell. As I just said this excuse also translates into the fact that they just don’t care enough about the Bible to want to understand it.
This leads me to the point of today’s message. The Body of Christ is no longer Delighting in the Word of God. Which to me is sad, and clearly outlines the reason why people no longer study the Bible on a daily basis. Would you like some reasons why people don’t study the Bible? I’ll give you some.
- It requires commitment: (Psalm 37:5) Do you know what we’re committed to today? We’re committed to our jobs, we’re committed to our families, we’re committed to watching television, and we’re committed to everything but the Lord. We have place a higher premium on everything else, but the Lord. The reason no one knows where to start reading or wants to understand the Bible more is because it requires them to make a commitment to start reading or trying to understand the Bible by going out and buying a version of the Bible that they would understand. I don’t like many of the other translations of the Bible, but if they help you to understand what the Word of God says then I’d rather you read one of those than not read the Bible at all. Do you know who else would rather you read one of those other translations than not read one at all? GOD.
- It requires sacrifice: (Romans 12:1-2) It requires the sacrifice of time. It takes time to study. It takes time to read. It takes time to be able to understand the Bible. Let me tell you that there are many, many things in the Bible that I don’t understand, but unless I have the commitment and am willing to sacrifice the time to understand what I don’t get…then I’m never going to understand it. I want to understand it. I want to know what things I don’t understand mean. So, that means if I’m going to want to do that then I need to sacrifice my time, I’m going to have to commit to turning off the world and getting into the Word of God. It means turning on good solid Bible messages, and turning off Mike & Mike in the Morning. It means sacrificing what I want to know about the world of sports, and finding good, solid Bible teaching messages.
- It requires work: (2 Timothy 2:15) Here is the bottom line. It takes work. This is why pastors these days would rather download a sermon off the internet than study and prepare a message themselves. It requires work. You cannot have the ability to rightly divide the Word of God if you never read it. You can’t even accurately preach or teach the Word of God if you don’t read it…studying the Bible if you’re a minister isn’t a suggestion, but a command. It’s a requirement, and for those of you who say that the Bible has lost it’s touch, and isn’t in tune with today’s society…you had better wake up and realize that the Bible is the inherent word of the One Living and True God…and you will one day be judged and held accountable for what you say and do out of that book that you think is no longer valid for today’s society.
- It requires time: I know that we’re all so busy these days, but we need to remember that it takes time. It’s taken me 11 years from the day God called me to this ministry to actually step into this ministry, and start doing what I’m doing today. However, if I’m to be completely honest and transparent this journey I’ve been on with the Lord started roughly 30 years or so ago…and even before that. I was blessed to have a grandmother who was a believer, and set me aside and apart by praying over me while I was yet in my mother’s womb. I’m almost 40 years old now. It’s taken me a long, long time to get to where I am today, and by the grace of God I’ll hopefully have another 40 years to continue to learn.
So, the truth is that I do delight in the Word of God today. I’m no great theologian. Like I said there is still plenty of the Bible I don’t understand, and I’ll be even more honest enough to tell you that I have never in all my years read the entire Bible from cover to cover. I can also tell you that even if I ever did try to read the Bible cover to cover I wouldn’t be able to. I’ve tried from time to time to read it from cover to cover, and I usually wound up going on little side journey’s. I’ve tried to read it from Genesis to Revelation…but I’ve never quite been able to do so because I always find myself getting taken on side journey’s. Why? Because I love the Word of God. I delight in it, and I would rather read it and study out some kind of side journey then read it from cover to cover and have no revelation or understanding of what the heck I just read.
Still, that doesn’t keep me from having the desire and delight in the Word of God. In fact, knowing that when I do sit down to read it, and I find myself on little side journey’s excites me and makes me delight in the Word of God even more because I kind of read it like the old Encyclopedia Brown choose your own adventure books. (I’m pretty sure I just proved I’m almost 40 years old). If you remember Encyclopedia Brown books then you know what I’m talking about. Basically it was a story book that started out on page one, but at the end of that page would be a choice as to which direction you’d go. One choice might lead to Encyclopedia Brown’s death, and the other might lead to him solving the case…but there were multiple endings, multiple stories, and that’s exactly what reading the Bible is like to me today.
I may start reading something, and wind up having a full-page of notes written about reconciliation, the love of God, or something else. I’ve even tried to do the read a book of Proverbs everyday for a month. I’d get to a Proverb, and it would remind me of something else. Before I know it two hours have gone by, and I’ve gone to a whole bunch of different scriptures…and haven’t finished that chapter of Proverbs yet.
See, here friends is the punch line for today’s message…if you delight in something then you will have no problem committing to it, investing into it, sacrificing for it, and giving it your time. Thus, when you come up with excuses that’s proof already that you delight in other things more than you delight in the Word of God. What you devote your time and money to shows what you delight in…and that, my friends is the bottom line.
What is your delight? Is it the Word of God? Is it Sports Center? Is it American Idol? Only you and God really know the truth…what’s He saying to you through today’s message? Maybe you need a 21 Day Fast from some of the worldly stuff like I did so that you are reminded of what’s really important…especially in the day in which we are living.
- Why do those who delight in the law of the Lord receive joy?
- What does it mean to delight in the law of the Lord?
- What do you delight in?
Conclusion & Prayer:
I don’t think I need to say much to draw today’s message to a close. I believe that this was a pretty clear message about what we should delight in as opposed to what we do delight in. I think it’s also clear that if you have excuses then what you’re really saying is that you don’t care enough about the Bible to know what it says, where to start reading it, or how to understand what it says. So, save your excuses because not only am I not buying them, but God isn’t buying them either. Don’t mad at me either. I write these messages under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost. I’ve no idea if you delight in the law of the Lord or not…but the Holy Spirit does…and if you’re feeling convicted then it’s a pretty good indication that you need to make a choice today…like we did with the Encyclopedia Brown books.
Are you going to make the choice that leads to your destruction or are you going to make the choice that leads you to delighting in the law of the Lord? It’s really pretty simple. Do you want death and destruction or do you want to make your ways prosperous and of good success? Do you want to hear God say “Away from me I never knew you” or “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.”
Father, how awesome it is to have the Word of God. Lord, I delight in Your law, and admit that even I can commit, sacrifice, work, and give more time to the reading and studying of Your Word. Help us, Lord, as I keep praying this to have a hunger and desire for Your Word that is never fully satisfied. Let us have a burning passion for Your Word that is never able to be doused or put out. Rather let it burn hotter, brighter, and more intense than ever before. Oh, Lord I love You. I love Your Word for it is the meditation of my heart, and I delight and desire to know it, to understand it, to teach it, but most of all to live it so that I can be a living, breathing walking example of what a God changed life looks like. I give You all glory, honor, and praise…in Jesus’ mighty name I pray…Amen & Amen.