Meditating on God’s Word

Blessed is the one … whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.”  Psalm 1:1-2

Let’s play a little word association game.  I’ll say a word and you tell me the first thing that comes to mind.  Okay?  Here we go:  “meditation!”  What is the first thing that comes to mind?

Go ahead and admit it!  You were thinking of some “guru” or “yogi” in some uncomfortable pose chanting some unintelligible word with the intent of emptying his mind of all thoughts.  That’s EASTERN meditation but NOT BIBLICAL meditation.

In fact, biblical meditation is the exact opposite; it’s filling your mind and focusing your thoughts on the truths of God’s Word.  Meditation is the deliberate and reflective consideration of God’s truth that has as its goal:

1.  Determine how God’s truth confronts & challenges you to change, and

2.  Discover ways to put God’s truth into practice through obedience.

The best illustration I know of regarding meditation is … yes, I’m serious … a cow.  Stop and think about how a cow gets the most from its food by chewing its cud.  The cow chews and chews and chews its food, then swallows, regurgitates, and chews some more.  The cow obtains the maximum nourishment from what it eats, thoroughly digesting every possible nutrient.

Ruminating on God’s truth through focused thinking helps us get the most out of every morsel of truth.  As we meditate on God’s truth, the Holy Spirit reveals God’s truth and exposes our lives to its influence.  We obtain the maximum benefit and blessing by submitting ourselves to God’s truth, letting God’s Spirit change us, and committing ourselves to obeying.

Want to learn how to meditate on God’s Word?  Join us for our “Grow in Maturity” workshop to learn some basic disciple-skills to help you meditate on God’s truth.

Scripture Memory #3 — Psalm 119:11

9 How can a young man keep his way pure? 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. Psalm 119:9-11 (NIV)

Extra Challenge:  Add verses 9 & 10 along with 11 to get the flow and full thought of the passage!

 

 

Holiness! Men’s Retreat

Twelve IBCB men went overnight to “Wort des Lebens” on the Köriser See to enjoy Bible study, outdoor activities, discussion, and fun.  Scott Corwin led three sessions on “Personal Holiness in Times of Temptation” as we looked at what the Scripture says about living holy lives especially in the face of temptation.  Lively discussion times followed as we dealt with the “nitty-gritty” of what it means to live a holy life and how to live it in our every day lives.

It wasn’t all Bible study and discussion!  We played a spirited game of indoor crab football, and got into capture-the-flag as well as “field volleyball” in the snow outdoors.  We learned a lot about each other sharing meals, rooming together, and talking informally.

In the end we concluded:  men need the camaraderie and accountability of other men in order to be all that God intends us to become.  We’ve already got plans for our next men’s retreat, and decided that the whole church needs to get in on the fellowship of an all-church retreat sometime in the not too distant future.

[Pictured above L to R: Günter Springer, Bryan Trueschler, Scott Corwin, Mark Morton, Jeff Magiera, Mathias Lehmann, Thorsten John, Max Duong Phu, Benjamin Sundemeier, Adam Knight, Winfried Härtel, and Klaus Ziegler]

Want to follow up on the retreat theme?  Then check out these Bible readings and devotional thoughts @ “Men of Integrity” for this week’s “Escape the Trap of Temptation” by clicking here.

40 Days Scripture Memory #2 — Hebrews 4:12

“For the word of God is living 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.” Hebrews 4:12 (NIV)

Scripture Memory Tips:  

1.  Begin and end with the reference.  When you attach the reference to the first phrase of the verse it helps you identify the location in Scripture as well as get the verse started.

2.  Learn the verse one phrase at a time and build to the point that you’ve memorized the whole verse.

3.  Write out your Scripture memory verse on a note card and carry it with you so that you can easily review a number of times throughout the day.

4.  Aim for memorizing the verse “word perfect.”  It demonstrates your respect for the text, builds your confidence, and helps you gain greater understanding.

5.  Review is the key to Scripture memory.  Once you’ve memorized a verse review it daily for six weeks and you’ll never forget it.

My Favorite Study Resources: Computer and Phone App

For all you computer and phone freaks, I thought I’d share with you some of my favorite electronic Bible study resources. Some of you might find them helpful as you continue to get into God’s Word.

YouVersion: This one resource has it all — that is, if you’re talking about online, computer/tablet, and phone presence. According to YouVersion’s home page: “A free Bible on your phone, tablet, and computer.
YouVersion is a simple, ad-free Bible that brings God’s Word into your daily life.”

I like the integration of online, computer, and phone presence that automatically syncs my Scripture memory bookmarks, my notes, and my current reading plan. Also, I’m exploring one of its “high-tech” features — YouVersion Live — that allows users to join live events where Scripture references, presentation outlines, questions, polls, and prayer requests can be posted during the event to create interaction between speaker and participants.

If you want to “follow” me on YouVersion look for “ibcbscott.”  I’ll create some live events in the near future and we can see how it works and if it’s something that is useful for our purpose.

Home

WORDsearch Bible:  For years I’ve used the WORDsearch Bible software for personal and professional Bible study.  According to their website:  “WORDsearch is recognized as the leading Bible software “serving those who preach and teach to change lives.” WORDsearch offers preachers and teachers over 4,500 Bibles and books that make Bible study faster, easier and more enjoyable.”

WORDsearch offers a “freeware” (Bible Explorer) and less expensive software version (Quick Verse) which gives you the flexibility and freedom to purchase electronic books to add to your library as you choose.  Over the years I’ve added hundreds of euros worth of Bibles, original language helps, commentaries, study supplements, etc. so that I have available on my computer what was once only available in a university or seminary library.

WORDsearch Bible is not the most academic of Bible study softwares available on the market which is why I like to recommend this to most people.  While exploring WORDsearch, look at their online “My Study Bible.”  http://www.mystudybible.com/ It’s worth checking it out!

https://www.wordsearchbible.com/