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The Discipline Of Meditation Part 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
May 24, 2021 1:00 am

The Discipline Of Meditation Part 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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May 24, 2021 1:00 am

We can’t run the race of life if our minds are not disciplined. Through a host of competing voices, we need to hear the voice of God, and meditation on the Scriptures is key. Are you hearing God’s voice on a daily basis?

 Click here to listen (Duration 25:02)

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Rain forests looking to Jesus and we can't run life's race. If our minds are not reading voices we need to hear the voice of God and meditation in the servicers is the way we do this. Are you hearing God's voice turned to someone and stay with the Moody Church in Chicago. This is running to win with Dr. Sir, whose clear teaching make it across the finish line. Estimates are noise level is really high. Our smart phones demand we pay them attention. Every few minutes.

How do we overcome this will debut certainly put your finger on a very important issue. You know, even those of us who are older what we discover is where looking at her phones were checking out certain statistics may be also. We are watching the news and learning about the headlines, possibly also we are on the social media and that of course has its own challenges.

It is difficult to meditate. It is difficult to be silent.

Now I know a professor in a Bible college used to take his students to a place like the downtown of Chicago state and Madison with all the noise and he taught them to shut out the noise and meditate. That's what we need to do takes discipline, but the Bible indicates that as we meditate as we listen to God we benefit. What a message that is so important for us today.

Let's listen carefully and then at the end of the message I'm going to be giving you information as to how these messages can be yours. But for now let us listen. We all had the experience of needing to put a marker in our Bible because suddenly were reading and we get to the end of the chapter I read this chapter today and is nothing wrong with that and we encourage you to read through the Bible as a Christian. If you've never done it should. But there's another way to take a trip and really we need to take a trip in both ways. The other is to say, you know, if I don't get there. That's not so serious if I don't make it by nightfall as to where I have decided I'm going to be. I'm going to enjoy this trip when you're driving along and it says historical marker 1 mile ahead, pull off and see what's there. And when it says scenic overlook 1 mile ahead were going to stop were going to breathe the air and if you're like my wife were actually going to take some pictures and then when we come home we got all these pictures that we've taken then and we just really have enjoyed this and we didn't get quite as far as we wanted to. But who cares, it was just great to drive and to enjoy the trip. Right now I'm talking about. The second way to read the Bible. Some of you may not see, if you read the Savior gonna read the Bible through, and then you get behind the Bible becomes a source of guilt. It lies there on the shelf instead of blessing you is just a means of guilt, and so you leave it there because you know that if you were to touch it, it just would remind you of all the failures all the time you said you're gonna read it and you haven't and so it lies there, somebody says that if all of the evangelicals in America blew the dust off their Bibles at the same time we have a dust storm.

It just lies there, condemning you is not why God gave us the word of God.

So rather than reading it through. If it's too much for you, and even rhymes reading it through. If it's too much for you while rather than doing it that way when I chose 12 books and say every month. I'm going to study and meditate in one of the books. Be sure to choose either the Psalms or Job or some a book from the wisdom literature. Maybe begin with a historical book of the Old Testament, New Testament, choose 12 and enjoy the right.

Now here's here's what you do were down now to pay dirt.

Finally, were getting right down to the nitty-gritty all right. You've prayed your opening the Bible because you've decided that you're going to read a certain book and you read this chapter in your same Lord, what is there in this chapter for me.

First of all you analyze a big word but it just means asked the tech some questions that you might like to write these questions down.

What does this teach me about God. What does this passage asked me to do. Does this passage have a promise I can cling to today. So what you're doing is you're looking at the scenery and you're taking a picture so that so that for the rest of the day.

Now you're going to have this Polaroid in your mind and and so what you're doing is you're simply saying to yourself what is here. I don't quite get the whole chapter read that's okay. If I read a few verses, that's okay too, because what I'm looking for is some food today for my empty soul might come as a shock to you but I did not wake up in the morning just like that are hot heart for God.

So what you do is say well I'll drift along maybe somewhere someplace. If I do nothing, just do it all in me and just wish me and I'll be spiritual no.

So what you're doing is you're feeding your soul because what you ate yesterday, spiritually speaking, does not help today. It's amazing how many people think what you know I got bless the church find what you just eat on Sunday and then eat the next Sunday if we need food for our bodies every day going over the congregation Sunday. I think it's skip a meal but anyway that we have her body every single day. We need to feed our souls every single day. So what we do is we read and we say Lord what's in it for me and reading it. As scholars were reading it to analyze to ask the text that question and to spend a little bit of time at the scenic overlook to take a picture we analyze. Secondly, we personal we say how should this change me today and this is most important. We do not leave this passage on till we have something today, we don't leave until there's something to give you an example of yesterday. Yesterday, I happened to go running and I went running I'm reading through the Psalms every month but I'm also reading other passages of Scripture. So I was in Revelation.

I was just struck by the verse of Scripture that talked about the church at Sardis.

It's is there some among you have not defiled their garments, thinking to myself, no.

Is Jesus talking about there and then a little later on those whom I love I I chastised and then and then later on in the next paragraph reads talking about Laodicea hold, I stand at the door and not give any man opened the door, I will come into him and have fellowship with them.

That's written to Christians not the same as the verses of you begin to think of what fellowship with the Lord really means and you begin to think about that and some of these verses just stuck to my mind like a bird on a trenchcoat. So as I was running contemplating the whole time.

Why because I said I'm not leaving this passage on till there is something here for me. That's the key. What you need to do is to get up earlier in the morning, at least 15 minutes earlier.

Some of you just need to prove the power of mind mattress and what you'll discover God will make the time to you. He really will. 15 minutes of sleep in the morning. Some people they stay in bed until the very last second, when they absolutely totally get out of bed and have not missed the bus or train or whatever. Give God 15 of those minutes so you analyze, you personalize and you memorize memorize. I'm not saying memorizing the whole verse so that may be very easy, on occasion, but your memorizing the phrases and the ideas of Scripture because remember you are not leaving this word without something for your soul for that day. And so what you do is you memorize. How do you meditate you analyze you personal lines you memorize and every day you come back for something more. I want to tell you today that if you were to do this for a month.

Some of you who have not been able to get over anxiety and anger and impurity and all kinds of other things that swirl around in your restless soul. You discover the transforming power of God's holy word member that story I told you before about the people who were in Europe and they came back with the jewelry box and they were told when they bought it in France that it was supposed to glow in the dark so they put it in their bedroom and it did not blow in the dark until a French friend, someone who could read French. Look at the box and read the instructions and it says put me in the sunlight during the day and I will glow at night.

They put it in the sunlight during the day and it glowed at night. Do you and I want to be able to glow-in-the-dark you and I want to be able to walk with God in the darkness when it seems that God has turned his face and went everything just keeps being pelted at us in going the wrong way. Do we want to be able to walk with God you meditate in the law of God in the sunlight and we can glow in the dark we've spoken about such things as contemplation, meditation, and your time with God with celebration in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God concerning you what you want to do is you want to lay hold.

Now, the Scripture you determine today that you're going to live for God. By the way I usually do this before I hopped out of bed in the morning as soon as I wake up I say to God I give you my date. God I give you myself. Everything that pertains to me today God is yours you want to lay everything before God. Before the day begins, because, after it begins it may be too late.

And so you go to that time of celebration. The time of thanksgiving to God.

A time about affirming, affirming what you have learned in the Scriptures you see will happen is now suddenly your soul is going to be filled with God's word and what is going to happen is God's word is going to take all of those other thoughts that you been trying to get rid of for the last 10 years and squeeze them out until you begin to meditate in the law of God during the day during the night over some of you is going to be a tremendous struggle. The devil is gonna say finally thereon to act. Let's get you'll miss one day in your saline missed one day. Why bother.

No, I don't care how many did you miss you do it again and again and again and again and again and again.

I wanted to say that again doing how powerful is the word of God. My wife and I have a friend whose name is Tom about 25 years ago we got to know him and his wife had a severe severe form of cancer. I say severe because always it is severe, but her pain was excruciating and she died at home. I remember as we counseled him during this period of time. He seemed to be so accepting of that his wife seem to be so accepting of it in one day I said to myself, how do you do this, aren't you angry with God. Aren't you filled with fear energy filled with apprehension. You know what's going on. He said no.

He said I read the Bible to my wife chapter after chapter in and he said we bought the New Testament on records. Those were in the days before cassettes even said we bought the New Testament on record, and he says we played these in our home, hour by hour, and the word of God squeeze down fear and the bitterness that's the transforming power that's meditating on the law of God during the day and during the night, and he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that will bring forth its fruit. God says to you today and to me, are you willing are you willing for the good of your souls to discipline.

Discipline yourself the discipline of meditation. How powerful is God I have want you to know that I have more confidence in God's word than I do.

Human arguments I've talked apologetics based on philosophy arguing for the Christian faith. But at the end of the day convince atheists. One day I met an atheist right over here at Mitchell's and we had a wonderful conversation you know if I said to him you realize of course that atheism doesn't make sense and it doesn't account for human life most assuredly can't account for the human soul. But more than that out of atheism.

No morality whatever can arise. You know the reason that atheists are moral is not because there atheists there created in God's image and therefore a new out of atheism you can prove logically and rationally. No morality whatever can arise. Atheism is hopelessly hopelessly bankrupt, intellectually, not to mention other ways to settle that to him.

You think you sit. I believe I believe I believe today I'm going to get saved course not convince a person against his will, will be of the same opinion still issue is atheism. The issue is a dark heart that's determined not to believe.

So what did I do what should you do if you're here today is a skeptic. Should you tell your skeptic friend will tell you what I told him I said deep you don't think is a rather important issue. Are you willing are you willing to have a 21 day experiment 21 day experiment of courses that will involve is a good question. I said what I want you to do is to take John's gospel in the New Testament 21 chapters want you to read a chapter a day before you read it just simply say God I don't believe you're there. I don't believe in you. But if you're real filming show me who Jesus you know something most atheists don't take that challenge and I'll tell you why there's something within them that says if I get that close to Jesus. I might end up but you know, for those who do for those who do. There's a transformation, they begin to say, I became intrigued with this man, who in the world speaks like this person speaks who is this person called Jesus who can say these astounding things who can make these unbelievable claims of deity, power. Wow, what happens is the word of God begins to grow in their souls, they can't get away from it until they say is the Savior of the world. I believe it's the power, the transforming power of God.

The Bible says by his own word, he may get us through the word of truth and some of us think we can live day after day after day after day with no input from that which God has chosen to bless and and that which God uses to transform us from the inside out in his long he meditates day and night shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that bringing forth his fruit in his season.

His leaf also shall not wither whatsoever he does prospects. But as for the wicked and not so like the chaff which the wind drives and that's the difference between those who meditate in the law of God and those who don't about all thanks this is the NIV translation above all things. Guard your heart proud of it. The wellspring of life. Blessed are those who feel their minds with God's most holy word play her father. Today we pray that you will give us the grace and the strength to guard our souls to fill our souls with that which is right and pure and good. We pray that there may be a transformation among all who would listen to this message because from now on daily consistently in good times and in bad. May all of us meditate in your law and therefore receive the promises that you give to those who do teach us the Lord because for many this is a whole new experience amidst all of the opposition amid a midst of all of the difficulties we pray God make us faithful in that which is most transforming.

We ask in Jesus blessed name on one) Pastor, let me ask you a question.

Do you look at first when you wake up in the morning your cell phone.

I've certainly been tempted to do that or do we go to the Scriptures do we go to God, knowing that if we meditate in the law of God, and it is so important that we gain something from the word in the morning that we can think about all day but it's a battle is in it and that's why I believe that this series of messages is so incredibly important it is entitled the disciplines of the soul in a world with so many distractions in a world with cell phones and computers and iPads.

It is so necessary for us to set all that aside and make the first things first. I believe that these messages can be a tremendous blessing not only to you but to others, and you can listen to them again and again, we are making these messages available for a gift of any amount we hear it running to win are committed to your spiritual growth. We want to give you resources that will help you in the journey of life. Now here's what you can do. Go to RTW

Of course RTW is all one word RTW or if you prefer you can call us at 1-888-218-9337 I'm going to be giving you that contact information again because it's vitally important that you take advantage of this opportunity.

Here's what you do go to RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 ask for the disciplines of the soul. It's time again for you to ask Pastor lutes or a question you may have about the Bible or the Christian life. Today's question takes us to the Old Testament and comes to us via email from Tammy my staff and I have a question. We have been debating and we hope you can clarify when Saul asked the witch to call up Samuel for him. Did she in fact really call up Samuel or was it a spirit that disguised itself as Samuel what you know Tammy. I've often pondered this question myself and I've not to taken the time to check a lot of commentaries to see what they have to say about this story. If you want my personal opinion I believe that Samuel was called up by this which now perhaps you're surprised at that. But you know the Bible says in first Samuel 28, which is where it occurs when the woman saw Samuel, she cried up with a loud voice this which herself was scared out of her wits. She was not expecting this. If this had just been a spirit you probably been used to that. But something was happening here that was miraculous, and then later on Justin two verses later, it says that Samuel actually spoke to Saul hand as Samuel said, why have you disturbed me and bringing me up and then Samuel goes on and tell Saul what Saul should've already known, namely, that God had departed from him and judgment was imminent.

I believe that this story is totally unique.

I don't think anything like it has ever happened before God just did a huge miracle and somehow Samuel himself was raised from the dead to speak to Saul but then when you stop to think of it, Samuel had to die again, as it were, go back into the grave. And of course all that we can do is to say that there's a mystery here. We don't understand, but of God is God. We can believe the text as it's written. Thank you Tammy for the question and thank you Dr. lutes for the answer. If you'd like to hear your question answered. Go to our website you'll find and click on ask Pastor lutes or call us at 1-888-218-9337 that's 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 running to win is all about helping you find God's roadmap for your race of life.

Isaiah wrote they that wait upon the Lord shall run and not be weary. We gain strength for life's race by waiting on God in prayer, your daily quiet times need a boost list so don't miss our next running to win for insights on discipline of prayer, making your times of prayer, more meaningful than ever before. Thanks for listening. This is Dave McAllister running to win is sponsored by the teacher

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