The Difference Between Reading the Bible and Meditating on God’s Word

The Difference Between Reading the Bible and Meditating on God’s Word

There always has to be a good reason to read the Bible. Even

“simply wanting to know what all the hoopla was about and why people were so hyped up on it”

could already be a good reason to start reading the Bible. From that point of view, it could give some good idea of what others are saying, what would or would not be in Scripture.

Best is to read the Bible to study it and to gain more knowledge of what is written inside it. Then it will give also a good idea of what others, like clergy, are insinuating what would be standing there in those 66 books of the Book of books, the Bible, and coming to see what is really written in it.

When

“in no way shape or form, did reading the Bible had anything to do with God.”

then it would be a very difficult start, already closing some gates to receiving knowledge or to coming into conversation with God. Reading the Bible is namely like being present by someone, listening to what He has to say. Reading the Bible also gives an opportunity to come into conversation with the Divine Creator of heaven and earth, the God of gods. When starting to read what He has to say, there has to be a willingness to listen to Him.

For sure, several people coming to read the Bible,

“some of their reasons aren’t particularly holy.”

Several people want to find reasons and words to attack those lovers of God, who find those words in the Bible sacred.

Sometimes, as the article writer mentions, coming to read the Bible is

“done out of curiosity”

as her friends in school did for religious studies

“and other times it’s for understanding the religion better.”

And that is a very good reason, more people should consider why reading that book is as important as reading other basic scriptures of certain religious groups.

All people should learn about the different religions and have to go through their basic scriptures. When the reason to read the Bible is to debunk the Bible, like some atheists and other (religious) people do they would often be surprised where they end up. More than once, an atheist or even a Christian or other religious person came to see the truth and came to look for a church that is living according to those Words of God.
That

“they use part of the bible to show why other Christian religions are wrong”

is not such a bad idea, when they do it with the right intention and lovingly, to bring people closer to the One and Only Real God, the God of Israel, the Elohim Hashem Jehovah, Who is One and not two or three.

Too often, people who call themselves Christian, do not dare to open their ears fully to those words of God, but prefer to be chained to the doctrinal teachings of their church, be it a Catholic or Trinitarian Protestant Church, instead of trying to read and understand the words like they are written black on white.

When there is a willingness to listen carefully to God’s Word as presented in the Bible, the reader shall be surprised how a whole new world might open up before him or her. But then it becomes most important also to accept those Words from God and to act to the received new insight. And that last bit is one of the very difficult parts when one has lived for several years in a certain Christian denomination. Often it is easier for an atheist to become a true Christian than for a Christian to become a real follower and believer in the son of God, Jeshua or Jesus Christ. Most people coming from a certain denomination have difficulties changing their lives and changing church, after they discovered that there are differences in the teachings of their familiar church and the contents of the Bible.

The difficulty for reading the Bible is that it has to be done with an open mind geared toward spiritual growth and with a willingness to change.
The writer of this article still has to go a long way, because she writes

“After all, the time He walked the earth stone was the paper of choice”

giving an indication that she still considers Jesus to be God instead of him being the son of God. God never walked this earth. God is an eternal Spirit Being (meaning having no beginning or birth and no end = no death) no man can see. Clearly, the writer of this article is still confusing and mixing two different Biblical characters. This comes perhaps because she is so clinched or stuck by her Catholic upbringing, where they worship a Trinity and other gods and saints.

We can only hope that those who read the Bible also one moment come to listen more carefully to the Words of God and start meditating on them as well, giving a two-way communication platform to the Author of the Book of books, so that more insight and wisdom will come to them.

The writer of this article (Marita) ends very nicely but also hits the nail when she writes

“Basically, meditating on God’s word is supposed to bring about change. Change in you and the world around you.”

And changing direction and adapting their belief unto what is really written in the Scriptures is one of the most difficult tasks for people who grew up in a Christian church tradition and who have come to read the Bible more thoroughly.
And the Bible deserves a thorough reading and study to be moulded by God and filled with biblical clarity rather than church indoctrination.

 

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Preceding

People Seeking for God 1 Looking for answers

People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations

God of gods

The Almighty Lord God of gods King above all gods

Is reading the Bible necessary?

Being in tune with God

How Social Media is Shrinking the Bible

Ways to Approach Difficult Bible Passages

Followers, protestors and reformers

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Additional reading

  1. Bible
  2. Unread bestseller
  3. What Is: The Bible as Originally Written
  4. Bible Word from God
  5. Word of God
  6. Bible Inspired Word of God
  7. Today’s thought “Word of the Only One God – To be read and listened at” (November 21)
  8. Bible Word of God inspired and infallible
  9. Moshe Rabbenu and Torat Moshe
  10. Bible in the first place #2/3
  11. Appointed to be read (Our World) = Appointed to be read (Some View on the World)
  12. Best to read and study the Bible
  13. Not studying an abstract and arcane text of the ancient world
  14. Best intimate relation to look for
  15. No other god besides Jehovah who gives all explanation
  16. Main verses in the Bible telling us Who God is #8 Some more attributes of God
  17. Today’s thought “Jehovah God makes us dwell in safety and confident trust” (January 02)
  18. Fill your hands with the Lord’s work
  19. A living Word giving confidence
  20. Praying and acts of meditation without ceasing
  21. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #6 Words to feed and communicate
  22. Pray that we will make the time to listen: listen to God and listen to each other
  23. Today’s thought “On the eternity of God” (December 17)
  24. Today’s thought “Ability to circumcise your heart” (May 13)
  25. Conversations that Matter
  26. Necessity of a revelation of creation 10 Instructions for insight and wisdom
  27. Necessity of a revelation of creation 12 Words assembled for wisdom and instruction
  28. Fear of God reason to return to Holy Scriptures
  29. From nothingness to a growing group of followers of Jeshua 3 Korban for God or gods
  30. Making time for God is crucial
  31. 500 years of a provision of the Word in the language of the peoples
  32. A special anniversary for the Church where Catholics and Protestants find common ground
  33. Accuracy, Word-for-Word Translation Preferred by most Bible Readers
  34. A Bible Falling Apart Belongs to Someone who isn’t

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Related

  1. Are you making time or making excuses?
  2. Practical Christianity: Give Your Time
  3. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom
  4. Seeking God’s manna
  5. The Book
  6. Our Amazing Bible
  7. The Original Biblical Writings
  8. Scriptures
  9. Purpose of Scripture
  10. God breathed
  11. Bible Reading Discovery
  12. Conversation between God and Me
  13. How to Begin Conversations with God
  14. Conversations with God part 2
  15. Talkative God
  16. Confirms the Word
  17. The Word, Faith, and Testing
  18. The Word – Good News and Bad News
  19. Believing God
  20. A way to look for Christ, the Bible, Word of God
  21. Light Unto My Feet
  22. Practical Christianity: Don’t Be A Jerk
  23. When My Mental Health is Suffering
  24. Bad News and Good News
  25. How Do I Read the Bible?
  26. How to Interpret Scripture
  27. Book: How (Not) to Read the Bible
  28. Read the Bible in a Year
  29. The Bible Tells Me SoFall in Love With Reading the Bible: 10 Tips to Keep You Motivated & Passionate
  30. The Not-So-Quiet Time

Seeking Redemption

To those now deep into biblical scripture you are probably aware of the difference between reading the bible and meditating on the world. Naturally, like many young Christians, I had assumed that once you read the bible, and you knew God’s words and it was enough. But I kept hearing about ‘meditating on the word’ and never understood what it meant. Until over a decade later when I began meditating on God’s word.

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and, training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work,” 2 Timothy 3:16-17

2 Timothy 3:16-17

Reading the Bible

I’ve read the bible twice, decades ago and still could quote a single lick of scripture. I read it just like I did with any storybook. Enough to know all the main characters and get a clear…

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A Word on Bible Versions

A Word on Bible Versions

EttingerWriting.com

By David Ettinger

A Fruitful Discussion
I recently had a nice discussion with a blogging friend regarding the Bible version I use.

This fruitful dialogue led to this post, which won’t analyze the many English versions of the Bible, but serve merely as my commentary on the issue. This is one of those topics many Christians can wrap their brains around, so, by all means, let your voice be heard in the comments section!

Bible Fascination
After I gave my life to Christ in 1986, I went shopping for a Bible. Not having much money, I was limited. I knew nothing about the many Bible versions, so I purchased the least expensive. It turned out to be an original New International Version (NIV), and am I ever glad it was!

I tore through my new Bible in just 4 months, and then started all over again. At the time, I…

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Between theology and philosophy

Theology is a heavily loaded word, which belongs more to the domain of philosophy and when looking at the many Theology colleges or universities one can wonder if it really is about studying the Logos or Word of the Theos the God, because in the majority of such institutions most time is spent into the writings of human beings, giving more attention to the many false human doctrines than the Biblical doctrines.

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To remember

  • on ThinkNet age-old debate on relationship between theology & philosophy.
  • reformational school of Christian philosophy > Neo-Calvinist movement inspired by Abraham Kuyper but brought to fruition by the legal philosopher Herman Dooyeweerd and his brother-in-law, D.H.TH. Vollenhoven).
  • James W. Skillen: when we write or speak + we know those reading/listening will think that any reference to a Christian, biblical perspective means “theology,” = simply talking about finding our place in the ongoing biblical drama of life in Christ–finding our place in the history of God’s work in Jesus Christ
  •  N.T. Wright insist that Paul is doing “theology,” > working to explain how God’s covenant drama with Israel is now being fulfilled in the revelation of Jesus Christ
  •  Paul =  following up on (or anticipating) his times of preaching + teaching in their midst, sending pointed summaries, extensions of what he already told them, + opening new vistas > communicating by living letters about life they share in Christ by the ongoing work of the Spirit.
  • Augustine used word “theology” in 2 different ways > represent essentially distinction many of us are trying to make.  = offer a preliminary explanation, “life of faith” <-> “theology”
  • the Christian way of life = Christian discipleship in all of life > not only a way of worship.
  • explain + interpret Christian struggle
  • multiple issues of political philosophy & “science” = to engage in theoretical enterprise including multiple “-ologies”
  • “politics,” > “political life as a whole” “dirty dealing,” “actions of government” (but not citizens), or “actions of citizens +  interest groups outside government.”
  • In political arena = to find ways of explaining + making distinctions
  • DFM Strauss (South African philosopher and author most recently of Philosophy: the Discipline of Disciplines):1) Theology =/= theological question = domain of philosophy => “Encyclopaedia of Theology” does not mention itself as a theological subdiscipline
  •  2) Dooyeweerd > not defend view that theology studies the faith aspect of creatio => Theology merely studies concrete reality as it functions within the faith aspect.= focuses on coherence of actual phenomena which function within that structure”
  • 3)   Calvinism/ Calvinistic = term only be explained historically by fact that this movement originated in the calvinistic revival which toward the end of the previous century, led to renewed reflection on the relation of the Christian religion to science, culture, and society.
  • Abraham Kuyper could not continue to be restricted to the reformation of the church and theology.
  • 4)    Thomas Aquinas “hijacked” Christian intellectual endeavours for theology by assuming that whenever something is considered in respectu Dei (in relation to God) such an activity is theological in nature.
  • Calvin Jongsma: Developing a theology of X = rampant among scholars who desire to advance a Christian perspective of X  >  Many will say = just a matter of terminology
  • Ponti Venter neo-liberal New Scholasticism = expansion of Theology to include all of human life has a number of contemporary sources:
 
  • marginalising of theology + religion in a secular society. => theology using secular natural science-theology debate to annihilate reformational philosophy for sake of their own financial survival.
  • We now have a huge faculty of theology, catering for every possible discipline and church, while the quality of ministers that is produced is weak, and every year fewer Reformed students report to study for the ministry. There are as many vacant pulpits in the Church as professors of theology who do weak research for the University, there and there are less students in the pipeline than professors.
  • 5. Neo-pragmatist scientism – or new old Scholasticism => to enlighten + govern. => Neo-pragmatism = one of worst forms of authoritarian elitisms
  • Rudi Hayward: Calvin Seerveld’s attempt to dissuade people of the “theology of arts” approach.> promotion of a general spiritualization of art, or a liturgical cast to art, or an evangelizing requirement for art, as the most Christian task misses the grounding biblical insight that art as normal creatural service can be a restored and redemptive, holy act, so artistry does not need an “extra,” theologically explicit insignia to be truly full-fledged service by Christ’s body-at-large.
  • Kerry John Hollingsworth: Philosophy of The Cosmonomic Idea = provided way to see that theoretical analysis (including theological analysis) does not give structural form to human experience within the creation > unpacks structural order of + for creation that is part of God’s “Let there be . . ”

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Find additional reading

  1. Protestant denominations of the Low Countries and Abraham Kuyper
  2. Wes Bredenhof on Abraham Kuyper
  3. Fullness of summer and abundance of harvest found in the satisfying plenitude of life in Christ

memory's sacred domain

ImageThere’s been some interesting discussion recently on ThinkNet on the age-old debate on the relationship between theology and philosophy. For the uninitiated, ThinkNet is a mailing list of people from various disciplines interested in the reformational school of Christian philosophy (often identified by the shorthand — for good or ill — as the “NeoCalvinist” movement. But for insiders, it is a philosophical movement inspired by Abraham Kuyper but brought to fruition by the legal philosopher Herman Dooyeweerd and his brother-in-law, D.H.TH. Vollenhoven).

On this point I have found useful Dooyeweerd’s introduction to his philosophy, In the Twilight of Western Thought, which has a chapter on theology and its relation to philosophy. One of his students, Johan P.A. Mekkes, also has a nifty volume on the topic, recently translated into English as Creation, Revelation and Philosophy

I present below snippets of the discussion, with some editing on…

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How Social Media is Shrinking the Bible

The following short article from a “Christian” source recognizes and addresses a modern day problem associated with Bible engagement and technology.

Though technology has played a major role in the availability of the Word of God in ways unimaginable just a generation back, today an estimated 50% of Americans read their Bible digitally on computers, phones, and Bible apps. In addition, computer programs quickly and efficiently present the Bible in multiple translations, readily available for reading, copying, and saving with the click of a mouse; while essential tools which Bible students depend upon such as concordances, lexicons, commentaries, etc. are equally available on line.
Yet… what impact has technology had on Bible engagement in this digital age?

Studies conducted by the Barna Group and The American Bible Society show that there is a growing Bible literacy problem despite the technological advantages, concluding,

“today’s technology is doing as much, if not more, harm than good to overall Bible literacy.”

Scriptural sound bites and snippets necessarily reduce not only content, but also meaning and impact. There is simply no replacement for Bible study. When one repeatedly reads the Bible with the sincere desire to understand and embrace it, one becomes familiar with its themes, its teachings, and its contexts.
We are admonished to

“study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15).

– Editor of the Christadelphian Advocate

°°°

Harper-Collins-Bible-best-Bible-apps-for-Android – the Word of Promise telling: The NKJV Study Bible, Second Edition, is the most comprehensive study Bible available!

It turns out that electronic Bible providers are employing “a data-centric model” which regularly regurgitates those verses which are already the most tweeted or shared by their user communities. The result is basically a repeating loop of “verse of the day” Bible balm. This means those who get their Bible online will receive plenty of I can do all things through Christ… (Philippians 4:13), and, For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace…(Jeremiah 29:11), but not so much of the rest of the Bible. Apparently no one is intentionally choosing a wide selection of verses to more adequately convey the wider range of biblical teaching… The prognosis is not good… the less-than-hopeful question:

“Does this mean that we lose out on doctrinal or propositional input into our Bible reading online”?

And if we do put more than therapeutic Bible verses out there, will they all merely land on “deaf ears, blind eyes, and dead screens”?
The concern is appropriate.

Constantly engaging Bible verses that make me feel good is perilously close to turning the Bible into a prophet that tells me only what I want to hear. This is the kind of prophet the real prophets warned us about. But is simply adding more verses – propositional ones – to the playlist really the solution? Isn’t there a deeper problem here?

Exposure to a wider variety of Bible verses might offer me more than therapy, but the entire approach is still based on providing would-be Bible readers little more than a morsel. The bigger issue is that we can’t rely on tweets, Facebook posts or “verse of the day” deliveries to our inbox to fulfill the promise of Bible engagement.
The social media channel as a communication medium has built-in limitations. The Bible itself is so much more than a collection of verses, so much richer than a sourcebook of one-liners… The Holy Scriptures are a gathering of complete literary works, meant to be read as a whole. These books come together to tell a story that can only be taken in, understood, and lived if it is fully encompassed, apprehended at length, and deeply embraced. Sound bites can’t do this. A constant diet of atomized fragments is a disservice to the Scriptures that God gave us.

Let us rather respect and read the Bible holistically.
Let us honor the Word of God by giving it our time and full attention.
We don’t need a shrinking Bible delivered to us with a diminished set of expectations. May we rather welcome back a full-sized Bible – the stories, wisdom, instruction, and visions overflowing with all that God has for us and all He expects of us.
Words to encourage and inspire us, yes: but also to instruct, correct, and welcome us wholly into this long and winding narrative that in the end leads us where we need to go. Only the complete Bible can do this. So read big.

This article originally appeared on Institute For Bible Reading organisation under the title “Verse of the Day‘Therapy’ is Shrinking the Bible,” October 10, 2018.

First ever black hole photo

Dear Kitty. Some blog

This 10 April 2019 video says about itself:

First-Ever Black Hole Image Released

The Event Horizon Telescope captured an image of the black hole at the center of the Milky Way galaxy.

From USA Today today:

It’s our first glimpse of one of the weirdest spectacles in the universe. Astronomers on Wednesday released humanity’s first-ever image of a black hole.

The picture reveals the black hole at the center of Messier 87, a massive galaxy in the nearby Virgo galaxy cluster. It looked like a flaming orange, yellow and black ring.

“We have seen what we thought was unseeable. We have seen and taken a picture of a black hole,” said Sheperd Doeleman, Event Project Horizon project director of Harvard University. “This is an extraordinary scientific feat accomplished by a team of more than 200 researchers.”

This black hole resides 55 million light-years from Earth and has…

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Sunday reflection . . . .But he who would be born again indeed,

Purplerays

‘Tis hard for man to rouse his spirit up–
It is the human creative agony,
Though but to hold the heart an empty cup,
Or tighten on the team the rigid rein.
Many will rather lie among the slain
Than creep through narrow ways the light to gain–
Than wake the will, and be born bitterly.

But he who would be born again indeed,
Must wake his soul unnumbered times a day,
And urge himself to life with holy greed;
Now ope his bosom to the Wind’s free play;
And now, with patience forceful, hard, lie still,
Submiss and ready to the making will,
Athirst and empty, for God’s breath to fill.

~ George MacDonald, Diary of an Old Soul

Art: Meg White
Text & image source: _/_Peggy @ ECUMENICUS
https://www.facebook.com/ecumenicus/

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What Tolerance really means

In this world we can see that less and less tolerance is given by people. Lots of Christians and fundamentalist religious groups want to take the crown for not tolerating others to live with them or in their neighbourhood.

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To remember

“Tolerance: Willingness to accept behaviour and beliefs which are different from your own.”

  • you will always see people who behave or believe differently from you => In order to coexist harmoniously with such people, you should be willing to accept such different behaviour or beliefs, if they cannot be changed.
  • changing someone’s behaviour or beliefs =  influence operating word, not force.

Victors Corner Blog

WHAT TOLERANCE REALLY MEANS
By Victor Uyanwanne
13/03/2015

I have always been interested in learning new words and I have usually made conscious effort towards achieving that aim. I remember way back in school when we were much younger when we used to keep “New Words and Meaning” notebooks as a deliberate strategy to enhance our knowledge of English words. Those notebooks were really helpful then in building our capacity to understanding English as a second language.

Somehow, I have carried the habit of learning new words into my adult life, but with a different strategy. Thanks to the revolution in ICT! For instance, I subscribed to an offer by my telecom service provider to send me one new English word and its meaning, every day. I have been enjoying this service for years now without fail. This service has afforded me a convenient medium of learning the meaning of…

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An Escape Mechanism

To remember

  • God = a ‘wish fulfillment; a fictional father figure projected in the sky of our imagination + created by our desire for security.’
  • Heaven = imaginary projection of our extinction + death
  • religion = psychological escape mechanism => we don’t have to face life as it really is.
  • atheism = flight from reality > projection of desire not to have to meet God one day + give account for your life.

God does not believe in atheists

escape

The new Atheists quote Sigmund Freud, that God is a ‘wish fulfillment; a fictional father figure projected in the sky of our imagination and created by our desire for security.’ On this view, Heaven is an imaginary projection of our extinction and death. And religion is simply a psychological escape mechanism so that we don’t have to face life as it really is. Well, of course, that’s all true; provided only that God does not exist. But if God does exist, exactly the same Freudian argument will show you equally convincingly that it is atheism that is the flight from reality. A projection of the desire not to have to meet God one day and give account for your life. If God does exist, then atheism can easily be seen as a psychological escape mechanism; to avoid taking responsibility for one’s life.

–John Lennox

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Scientific Proof is Unproven

Scientific Proof is Unproven

To remember

  • common misconceptions of science = idea of “scientific proof.” > Science =not in the business of “proving” theories (or laws).
  • Everything in science is tentative
  • Facts are based on our best understanding and if our understanding changes tomorrow so will our facts.

Finding the Messiah in Hebrew dictionaries – 1.

Brit In Jerusalem

I’ll carry on with more about my trip round China shortly.   My blog follows a sort of ‘Reader’s Digest’ pattern of stories that start and stop mainly on themes of my faith in Christ, travel in places of the bible and other countries that interest me.

IMG_20180615_201345529

This week I was really blessed to get this set of 4 volume Hebrew dictionaries, these used to belong to a library, I know that the Hebrew language actually gets ‘updated’ with new words for modern things, these books are from 2000.   So I don’t know how out of date they have to be to be retired!

I’m not a biblical scholar.  I have no Jewish background in my family as far as I know.  I’m a Christian who did some volunteering in Jerusalem, and I learned some Hebrew out there.   Not very much, not enough to be much useful.   I can’t remember many words…

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