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Thursday, July 19, 2018

July 19 – Meditate, Fix, Delight, Remember

“I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways.  I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word.”  Psalm 119: 15-16 (ESV)

As we mentioned, this is the third posting which is from Psalm 119 and it is about the Word of God. The Psalmist uses ten different words to reference God's Word and today there are three besides the word 'word'.  This may differ in various translations but the one we have today uses, 'precepts', 'ways', 'statues', as well as 'word.'  The messages which we find in the Bible were not conceived by human beings.  The human writers were just passing on to us what God knew we all need.  And that is how the psalmist reacted to what God had said.  We notice that he mediated on God's messages, focused or fixed his eyes on what God had said and noticing how He dealt with people.  As a result of thinking about all this, it brought him delight and gave him a desire to pay attention to what God said.  We can do  the same. Meditating, focusing, delighting and determining to not forget what God has given us to help us on our journey with Him. 

Note on Psalm 119 

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

July 18 – Treasure that Protects

“Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You.” Psalm 119:11 (NASB)

The second verse from Psalm 119 that we are looking at reminds us that God has known that His creatures need help to know how to live. We do not naturally come into this world with the ability to do good and to not sin.  That is why God, through his servants, prophets and others gave them instructions to record His messages for people to read.  God has provided the information and the wisdom we need to read.  But God's message is not only for us to read.  We need to make it a part of ourselves as the psalmist said “to treasure” or “to hide” God's Word in our heart.  Maybe we think we do that by memorizing Scripture, which is an excellent thing to do, but we can make God's message a part of us by applying what He says to ourselves and to meditating on it. And what is the result?  The promise we have is that if we make God Word a part of ourselves it will help keep us pure and free from sin and from the things that displease God. 

Note on Psalm 119


Tuesday, July 17, 2018

July 17 – A Light on the Straight Way

“Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” Psalm 119:105  (NIV)

Over the next six days we are going to focus on verses from Psalm 119, the longest chapter in the Bible with 176 verses. [See the Note below.]  The emphasis of this Psalm is about the Word of God.  We sometimes think of life as a journey that we are all taking through time.  We speak of walking through life and the psalmist draws that picture for us.  None of us know what is ahead of us so it's like walking in the dark where we need a light.  God knows that we need help in going through life and He has given us guidance.  The Bible is like a guide-book that illuminate our way for us if we pay attention to it.  This is why the psalmist pictures God's Word for us as a lamp which God has given to us.  It gives us vision to see the way God has set before us. He promises to make our way straight and He gives us what we need to see that way. 

Notes on Psalm 119 

Monday, July 16, 2018

July 16 – Praising and Thanking Sacrifice

“Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name.”  Hebrews 13:15 (NASB)

This verse come from the letter written to the Hebrews and is in the New Testament.  We don't know for certain who authored this letter but we know it was written to Christians who were of the Jewish race.  In their background were all the ceremonies and sacrifices in the Temple. They were used to bringing their offerings of animals which were killed and who's bodies were burned on the alter.  But now Jesus had died on the cross and these Hebrews had believed in Him as their sacrifice.  They did not need to burn animals on the alter any more.  So our verse today reminds us what God expects of us as we approach Him to worship.  Today when we offer sacrifices, we come to God with our praises and our thanksgivings.  Wherever we worship Him, at church or in our homes, we can speak forth His praise and He accepts that as our true sacrifice to Him.  Today, let's give our Lord a sacrifice by praising and thanking Him for all He has promised us.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

July 15 – To All The World

“...for I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and relenting from disaster.” Jonah 4:2b (ESV)

The words in this verse from the prophet Jonah, were not necessarily given in the best attitude.  Jonah is giving his reason, or excuse, for why he disobeyed God's instruction to go to Nineveh and when he did go, he complained.  Jonah knew all this about God but he thought only the people of Israel should benefit from it.  He didn't think their enemy in the heathen city of Nineveh should be included.  We are gald that God's goodness and righteousness and love have come to us and all nations.  We can now experience God's grace and compassion and His abounding love in our lives.  And, we can experience it every day.  We can stand behind those who spread His message of love to all who do not know it – in our community and our state as well as the ends of the earth.  Jonah declares a promise of God that is as true to us today as it was in his time.  Gracious, merciful, slow to anger, abounding in love, relenting from disaster for those who call on Him and believe in Him.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

July 14 – Always Available

“As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?” Psalm 42:1,2 (ESV)

This word picture is something we can see clearly.  For a deer in nature, and for almost all creatures, a very important part of life is the water it finds in a spring or stream.  For us who have human souls the most important part of life is close fellowship with our God and what He gives us. There is nothing in this world that can satisfy the longing of our soul like our God can.   After we came to know God in a real way we will long to know him better and to keep in close touch with Him each day.  The psalmist asked when He could meet with God.  The psalmist's spirit is depressed and he is crying out to God for answers.  But he knows that God is what he needs. The last words of the psalm say, “Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.”  We too know the answer to that question because God is always available for us to draw what we need from Him.

Friday, July 13, 2018

July 13 – Encouragement Brings Hope

“For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” Romans 15:14 (NASB)

The purpose of this daily blog is to find encouragement from the Bible each day and inspiration for living.  But this process is something that has been going on long before any of this communication technology was invented.   Notice that the apostle Paul writes about receiving encouragement from the Scriptures.  And he wrote that not only for himself because he knew that way before his time people were finding instruction and were being encouraged as they read the Old Testament Scriptures.  Paul also meant all his friends who were also encouraged as they read, or heard other read the Scriptures.  Yes, even before Bibles were printed people would gather and received encouragement as God's Word was read from the scrolls.  And so even today you and I find encouragement from God's Word, don't we?  The final promised result is important – encouragement of Scriptures brings us hope.   We are promised that result and it's a good reason to read and listen to the Scriptures.