How Will You Honor God This Year?
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.Matthew 11:28
Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. What does this mean? We should fear and love God so that we do not despise preaching and His Word, but hold it sacred and gladly hear and learn it.The Third Commandment
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Admit it. There’s just some stuff you despise in the day-to-day of life.
Maybe it’s cold weather, or hot weather. Maybe it’s waking up early or going to bed way too late. Maybe it’s a certain kind of food or, more likely, a diet that keeps you from eating what you want. I’m guessing there’s something you despise about teaching. Something you do because you have to, but really can’t stand.
Now think for a moment about how you treat God’s Word. Really, how you treat God’s Word. At times, we love it and read it. Perhaps you study and journal or pray. Maybe you’re one of those people who really goes for developing a devotional life. “I’ll read the Bible every day!” you say. And you do . . . for a while. But as life gets busy or you get lazy, your Bible reading plan falls off. Then you feel guilty. It’s like joining a gym and paying the membership dues without ever going there. The Bible you pledged to read every day now just sits there on the shelf or the desk. It taunts you. And honestly, you can grow to despise it.
After all, why should you read the Bible every day? Non-Christians don’t! That’s too hard of an expectation, right? Why should Christians be given such a burden and command to regularly and daily meditate on God’s Word? It’s just another thing we’re supposed to do, right?
But is it? It’s a sin to despise God’s Word, to reject His promises, and to ignore God’s command. But when we look at God’s Word—I mean really think about it and look at it—we don’t find a burden. Instead, we find God’s promises and His hope. In God’s Word, we receive the promise of forgiveness. We discover mercy and grace. Through reading and hearing and repeating His Word, the Holy Spirit plants faith in our hearts. This is the faith that clings to Christ and God’s epic plan of salvation.
In other words, because God uses His Word to speak to us, grow our faith, and give us strength as His people, we gladly hear and learn it. It’s what we do. It’s a gift. So let’s not despise it. Yes, it may feel like an added burden to our crazy, daily schedules. But in God’s Word we hear the Gospel, which actually eases the burdens of daily life. By meditating on it, we hear again of our sin and God’s faithfulness. When we gladly hear and learn God’s Word, the Holy Spirit continually draws our worldviews deeper and deeper into God’s salvation plan.
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