Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Holy Men Meditate.
Geoffrey R. Kirkland
Christ Fellowship Bible Church

What does it mean to meditate on the Word of God? Spurgeon said that ‘holy men are thoughtful men; they do not suffer God’s wonders to pass before their eyes and melt into forgetfulness, but they meditate deeply upon them.’  How can we learn from this and excel at the God-given grace and important discipline of biblical meditation?

Below I’ve penned some thoughts on what it means to meditate. Truly, holy men meditate.

1. To Meditate Requires Aloneness with God.
The morass of distractions plagues Christians today. Satan can use devices which are not sinful in and of themselves and distract the child of God from spending alone time with God. To have eternal access to the Omnipotent, to have open-arms from the heavenly Father willing to receive His dear children, to have eager affections from the Lord of Hosts to meet with His children should resolutely compel all of His children to meet with Him each day. But meeting with God requires being alone; it requires being quiet; it requires the deliberate exclusion of distractions and distracting devices. And this is hard for us. To be quiet, alone, distraction-less, is hard — yet it is essential. Biblical meditation means that the man of God meets with His God and he does not wish to allow that anything would interrupt or intrude his time of meeting with God.

2. To Meditate Requires Digesting the Scriptures.
Jeremiah was given the scroll and God told him to eat it (Jer 15:16). Ezekiel also ate God’s scroll and digested it (Ezek 2:8-3:3). Jesus’ true food was to do the will of God and accomplish His work (John 4:34). Man lives on every word that comes out of the mouth of God (Matt 4:4). The Apostle John received the scroll and was told to eat God’s Words (Rev 10:9-10). All of these emphasize the importance of internalizing, digesting, receiving, eating the Word of God. To feast on the Word in the mornings, in the evenings, and during corporate worship is most essential. Yet eating food requires the digestion of food. And the biblical art of meditation is the digestion of God’s Word. Every Christian needs this. Eating without digesting does not provide nourishment. Eating with proper digestion is crucial. The man of God should digest the Word, he should think on the Word, he should return to the Word repeatedly, he should fill Himself with the Word incessantly. 

3. To Meditate Requires Contemplation of Thought.
To be a Christian is to know Christ. To know Christ is to ponder Him, to love Him, to desire more of Him, to increase in passion for Him and His glory. God told Joshua, the man of God, to meditate on His truth day and night (Josh 1.8). The idea of meditate includes that of constant musing and continuous pondering to oneself. Men of God passionately and zealously desire to behold the beauty of the Lord and to meditate in His temple (Ps 27:4). To understand God’s ways includes meditating on His wonders. Thinking and understanding go together and are required in biblical meditation. Meditation is not a freeing of the mind or an emptying of the mind. It is to fill one’s mind with God’s truth and to contemplate that truth so as to know it better, to love it deeper, and to obey it more.

4. To Meditate Requires Responding in Prayer.
A man of God quiets himself with the Word of God, digests the Word of God, considers and contemplates the wondrous beauty and truthfulness of that Word and then he responds to the Word of God by speaking to the God of the Word. Prayer is a necessary ingredient to meditation. A man of God grows in his knowledge of and love for God by responding to who God is by taking hold of God in prayer and earnestly seeking His face. Yet this cannot be contained in a few minutes. This kind of taking hold of God does not happen without deliberate prayerful intentions. Especially with the busy calendars with which we are familiar, holy men of God must carefully, consciously, and resolutely protect his time of meeting with God so that he can respond to what he has read in the Word, so that he can confess where he has failed to live up to God’s demands, so that he can seize the grace of God received in the gospel of Christ’s love, and so that he can, by the Spirit’s enabling power and grace, endeavor to follow, serve, and obey Him even more faithfully. 

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