Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Illuminated by the Word

      For the past few years I have used the Robert Murray M'Cheyne reading plan to go through the bible.  It is a great plan that when used you read through the Old Testament once and Psalms and the New Testament twice a year.  As Christians we need to be in God's Word and meditating on it.  I recently saw an article about the presidential campaign and it had a poll that stated nearly half of evangelical Christians thought that mormonism wasn't evangelical, mormons aren't Christians.  Nearly half!  That means more than half of professing evangelical Christians think that mormonism is Christian!  Another denomination or something. Why is this happening?  There are numerous reasons, but first and foremost I think it is the biblical ignorance of Christians.  The church is biblically illiterate.  We can blame the pulpits and other areas, but the fact of the matter is, the responsibility falls on us.
      The daily reading plan isn't that much reading, typically it is 4 chapters a day.  2 from the Old 2 from the New.  However your schedule works, but maybe you could read 2 in the morning before work or school or whatever it is you do.  Then 2 more before you sleep for the night.  However you can work it out, do it.  Think how much time is wasted during the day.  We focus on so many other things that may be legitimate concerns.  School, work, homeschooling kids, dinner, shopping, all these things need to be done, but we need to align our priorities.  Christ needs to be first and all those things need to be done for His glory.  Ephesians 5:15-16 says"Look carefully how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of time because the days are evil"  Our time should be focused on Christ and though we have worldly responsibilities we need to place Christ at the top of the list and everything else we do needs to be governed by this.

       As we are reading through the Scriptures it is also important that we are pursuing Christ and not just reading to read.  We shouldn't just be dissecting and breaking down the text.  We need to read it as it is, God's Word.  When we come to the Scriptures for any other reason than to seek God and to hear from Him we rob the Word of it's purpose.  God has revealed Himself in the Scriptures and He desires for us to know Him.  So many want to hear from God yet do they open the Bible?  Everything we need is found from Genesis to Revelation.  Psalm 119 is a great psalm about God's Word.  In verse 135 the psalmist states"Make your face shine upon your servant, and teach me your statutes"  God's face shines on us when we are in His Word, learning and seeking His face.  When we go to the Scriptures for this purpose we receive God's favor and have communion with the living God.  To know Christ should be our focus when we read.  Jesus said in the Gospel of John that the scriptures testify of Him, and then in Hebrews chapter 10 Christ says that the "volume of the book was written of me".  Do you want to know Jesus?  Do you want to become more like Him?  To fall more in love with Him and experience His grace?  We find this In His Word.  You want to learn the will of God?  You want to know the mind of Christ?  Open His Word.  Calvin says "we ought to believe that Christ cannot be properly known in any other way than from the Scriptures, and if it be so, it follows that we ought to read the Scriptures with the express design of finding Christ in them." If you aren't in the Scriptures daily then start, start today.  I will be posting the reading plan daily and trying to just give some devotional thoughts that go along with the reading.  Lets grow closer to Christ and truly get to know Him as the days draw near to His coming!!!!

Todays reading list:
Gen 32      
Mark 3
Esther 8
Rom 3

Monday, January 30, 2012

Psalm 63:1-2, 5-6

O God you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you;
my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.  So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory.

My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips, when I remember you upon my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of night.

Psalm 63:1-2 5-6