Summary: When most people think of meditation, they think of Eastern religions or sitting in an uncomfortable position making a humming sound. Meditation as the Bible talks about is a discipline that truly helps us know God’s word to be walking in His ways and li
P90X for the Soul
Intro – The Cool Down
If you have ever done a workout class, or one of the P90X tapes, they always start with a warm up and they end with a cool down.
I understand the warm up, getting the muscles and your system ready to exert themselves, but why the cool down? Why can’t you just stop? You have already done the heavy lifting of the workout, why do some minor cooling down? Does it really make a difference?
Well, it turns out that the cool down is really an essential part of a physical work out.
It keeps the blood circulating to those muscles and tendons and ligaments you just worked out providing them the oxygen and nutrients they need to repair the little tears that are caused by the work out and to allow that workout to really be absorbed and not lost over the next days.
So often without a cool down, you are in more pain and unable to keep going in your workouts.
Well, today, we are going to talk about something I think is akin to the cool down that will help us benefit and retain for the long haul some of the effects of other disciplines like Bible study and prayer, and that is meditation.
Now when I say meditation, probably in most of your minds you picture something like sitting in some uncomfortable position with your hands on your knees and making a humming sound while trying to empty your mind.
Is that what meditation is from a Christian standpoint?
Turn with me this morning to Joshua 1:6-9.
We are going to see what God tells Joshua to do and why he wants him to meditate and consider what meditation is from a Biblical standpoint.
Now, in this section, of Joshua, Moses has died and now Joshua is the leader of Israel who is going to lead them into the Promised Land. They have been in the desert for 40 years so that the unbelieving generation had died off.
Now God has called upon Joshua to lead the people and this is going to require great courage and obedience to the Lord.
In our day, we need great courage and obedience to the Lord. Each of us need to hear and heed the words of the Lord to Joshua.
Here is what He says.
6 "Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. 7 Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." (NIV)
Ok, I want to start by asking some questions.
First, I want to ask
What is Meditation?
Now from this passage of Scripture, we don’t get the sense that the Lord is telling Joshua to sit in some lotus position with his hands on his knees day and night, do we?
No, that is certainly not what the Lord is communicating.
In fact, instead of emptying your mind, like we might hear in some of the eastern religions like Buddhism, Meditation from a biblical standpoint is about focusing your mind.
In fact, when we look back at the Hebrew word translated as “meditate” we find it is the word “hagah” (Ha Ga). It can mean to murmur, ponder, devise, muse, imagine or plot. It is about thinking and going over something in your mind.
So a definition that might be helpful for us today is
Thinking and/or Dwelling upon a subject or series of subjects to seek greater understanding of the subject.
It is going over something in your mind over and over.
Meditation is connected to, yet different from Bible study and prayer.
In Bible study we are seeking to learn what the Bible says.
In prayer, we are looking to communicate with God and draw close to Him.
In Meditation, we are seeking to take what we have learned and have it cemented inside of us so that we constantly have His word and our knowledge of Him with us.
Ok, so meditation is thinking about a subject to seek greater understanding.
In meditation that the Bible speaks of, what are we supposed to meditate on?