Summary: I want to encourage you to Read your Bible to protect you from sin to memorize scripture so that you hide it in your heart and to meditate so that scripture marinates your heart
The Word of God
12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
The Bible is the most unique book in all the world. It more than any other book has changed the course of history and charted the future of mankind. If we have such a valuable and effective book we must ask ourselves these three questions.
How are we using it?
How well do we know it?
And how are we being changed by it?
At the turn of the 19th century the story is told of a French trader making his way across the New Hebrides Island (known to us today as Vanuatu). A tribal Chieftain sat reading a Bible as the Frenchman approached. The Frenchman asked “why are you reading the Bible – I suppose the missionaries have gotten hold of you, you poor fool. Throw it away – the Bible never did anybody any good”. To this the Chieftain replied, I should like to remind you, that if it wasn’t for this Bible, you’d be in my kettle cooking by now.”
Source: Bible Illustrations Book 4 AMG Publishing 1998 Chattanooga Tennessee pg.25 #68
If you were that Frenchman you would be very glad that the Bible had the power to convert a tribal Chief from a cannibal into a brother in Christ. I would think the Frenchman would want the Chieftain to read on to the verse that says, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” Luke 6:31
This week as we studied “Believe” by Pastor Randy Frazee we were challenged by the life changing power of God’s word.
Pastor Frazee put it this way… “As you probably observed, the Bible is unlike any other narrative. It is God’s story, chock full of amazing depth and application for our lives. Jesus reminds us that the condition of our heart is important when we hear or read God’s Word. If we are open and receptive to God’s words, they will take root in our lives and transform us.” Source: “Believe” Randy Frazee – Zondervan Grand Rapids Michigan 2015 pg.218
Jesus used the Parable of the Sower who sowed good seed on different kinds of ground that had different kinds of results. You can find that lesson from Jesus in Matthew 13:1-23.
This week I just want us to accomplish 3 things.
Firstly let’s look at Bible Reading as we practice it in our Christian lives.
Secondly let’s talk about memorization of God’s word and hiding it in our hearts.
Thirdly let’s look at meditation on God’s word or marination as I like to call it to see how God’s word can get deep within us.
Each of these practices pay spiritual dividends for you and me but as I said last week we must make them a practice of our everyday lives.
When we make it a practice to read the Bible we are spending quality time with our Heavenly Father. We are in effect reading the letter He wrote for us.
16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
God speaks in the Bible by His own voice and for the Christian that voice is the Holy Spirit. Jesus told us that He would give us the Holy Spirit as our tutor to teach us.
26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Let’s use the power and counsel of the Holy Spirit as we read a portion of God’s word; Psalm 119:9-16 Open your Bible and turn to it with me and let’s ask the Holy Spirit to teach us;
Psalm 119:9-16New International Version (NIV)
9 How can a young person stay on the path of purity?
By living according to your word.
10 I seek you with all my heart;
do not let me stray from your commands.
11 I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
12 Praise be to you, LORD;
teach me your decrees.
13 With my lips I recount
all the laws that come from your mouth.
14 I rejoice in following your statutes
as one rejoices in great riches.
15 I meditate on your precepts