DAILY DISCIPLINE #33
by Colleen Donahue
"These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up." Deuteronomy 6:6-7
It was about 641 B.C. when a young boy of eight years named Josiah became the King of Judah. He came to the throne at a time in history when Judah had forsaken the one, true God--the God that had so miraculously led their forefathers out of slavery from Egypt. Hundreds of years had passed in which a stubborn, willful, yet chosen people had entered Canaan-- the land God had promised them. Gradually, they had forgotten all that God had done for them. Their hearts turned from Him. It was during these years that the words of God handed down through Moses had literally become lost.
When Josiah was 18, he sent some of his trusted men to repair the temple of God which had fallen to ruin. While they were at this task, Hilkiah the priest found the "Book of the Law" and brought it before Josiah to be read. Immediately upon hearing it, Josiah humbled himself and wept before God. How could God's chosen people have gone so far away from Him? Without delay all the kingdom was gathered--men, women and children--and the Bible read aloud. All the people renewed their covenant to follow the Lord and removed their idols from the land. A great judgement of destruction was thwarted that day because the people humbled themselves and began to obey God's Word.
Could we in the 21st century be in a similar state? Our Bibles physically are not lost. Many of us would have one, maybe two Bibles on our bookshelves. But how many of us read and treasure and walk according to the words God gave? The Bible has become like a good omen on our bookshelf. It is stuffed with family information and other precious sentiment. It is a book to be counted among literature but not important enough to be read and studied. Even for those who claim to be God's children, reading the Bible falls far behind the priority of newspapers, novels and television.
Could the Bible that gathers dust on our bookcase have anything to say about our loneliness, failing business or direction in college?
IS THE BIBLE STILL RELEVANT FOR TODAY?
Day 1- A book is only as inspiring as the character of its author. Where did the Bible's inspiration come from?
II Timothy 3:16
Day 2 -Although appointed men physically wrote the Bible, where did their words come from?
Jeremiah 36:2 / Ezekiel 1:3 / II Peter 1:21
Day 3 -If God who is the Alpha and Omega (Revelations1:8) -i.e. the eternal God who knows the beginning from the end--inspired the Scriptures to be written, could the Bible be anything less than a book for all ages?
Psalm 119:89 / I Peter 1:25
Day 4- Therefore, we can conclude that the words in the Bible are more sure and solid than even the things in our life around us.
Isaiah 40:8 / Matthew 5:18 / Matthew 24:35
Day 5- Our conclusion is shared by several that gave actual testimony that ALL of God's Word is absolutely trustworthy.
I Kings 8:56 / Psalm 111:7 / Ezekiel 12:25
The author of any book has a definite purpose which prompts him to write. The Bible is no different. It expresses God's own heart. It was written for a definite purpose. What was it?
Day 6- Who was it to authenticate?
Day 7 -What was all mankind meant to receive from it?
Day 8- Notice how its pages skillfully relate human experience as a warning to men in any century.
I Corinthians 10:11
Day 9- And perhaps most personal to us, it was to give knowledge of eternal life.
I John 5:13
The Word of God is likened to two life forms:
Day 10- As bread is to the body, so is the Bible food for our souls.
Deuteronomy 8:3 / Job 23:12 / Psalm 119:103 / Jeremiah 15:16
Day 11- Can it be any wonder that men are starving to death in the 20th century, yet have the appearance of fatness?
I Peter 2:2
Day 12- The Bible is secondly compared with a light that shines in the dark.
Psalm 119:105,130 / Proverbs 6:23 / II Peter 1:19
Day 13- Could so much sin and darkness possibly be in our societies today because the Bible is almost a forgotten book?
Daniel 9:13 / Zechariah 7:11-12
Day 14- Unlike most books the Bible is not a book to be stored in your mind alone.
Deuteronomy 6:6 / Deuteronomy 11:18 / Psalm 119:11 / Romans 10:8
Day 15- For those Christians that have gone before you, what compelled them to commit daily time to reading the Bible?
Psalm 119:72,97,140 / Jeremiah 15:16
"But, you ask, If I DO make time in my busy schedule to read my Bible daily, what good will it do me?"
Day 16- This may be a little like asking, "Why should I listen and respond to the person that is most dear to me? " Is love not reason enough? Is there a love for God in your heart?
Psalm 119:47 / I Peter 1:8
Day 17- But whether we feel a love for God at this time is not important. Love is action. You can begin today to read even the one verse printed here and God will see your earnest heart that yearns to know Him and ultimately love Him.
As you read daily, you'll find a miracle of transformation taking place within you. It doesn't matter whether or not you feel it or see it. The fact is, "God is not a man that He should lie...hath He said and shall He not do it? (Numbers 23:19)
What can happen as a result of daily Bible reading?
Day 18- We can be "regenerated" or spiritually "Born Again"
I Peter 1:23 / Psalm 19:7A
Day 19- When we've been through sorrow or affliction, we can be "revived" or preserved alive.
Day 20- We can receive understanding from God on something that is complex.
Day 21- Even the "simple" can become as wise men.
Day 22- The Word can give us hope.
Psalm 119:49 / Romans 15:4
Day 23- The Word can produce in us such a reverence for God that it can lead to obedience to Him in our life.
Day 24- It can keep us from a life of sin and from destructive paths.
Psalm 119:9.11 / Psalm 17:4-5
Day 25- The Word helps us to grow as Christians.
I Peter 2:2 / Acts 20:32
But what if you start reading and find you don't understand everything?
Day 26- The FACT IS that if you read your Bible for what it is-- i.e. God's Word- IT WILL BE EFFECTIVE in your life.
I Thessalonians 2:13
Day 27- Just as Christ opened the disciples' minds so that they could understand His words, so He will do so for us.
Day 28- God also gives us His Holy Spirit to dwell with us so we can understand the truth of the Bible.
John 16:13 / I Corinthians 2:10-14
Day 29- We are thus without excuse if we fail to see the seriousness of God's commands.
Day 30- Is there any reason that TODAY can't be the beginning of a new life-long habit of reading some of the Bible every day?
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