Elder's Prayer - May 20, 2018
Please find below the notes from the Elder's Prayer this past Sunday.
Last Sunday, during the call to worship, Pastor Bret read Psalm 19 as he opened the worship service. I was thinking, after reading Psalm 19, no one would walk away questioning the love that David had for the Lord and His word and how he used that to hate sin in his life.
When David described the uniqueness of the precious word of God and what it is capable of, all he likely had was Pentateuch, the first five books of the Bible that Moses had written, which includes books like Leviticus that only Pastor Bret loves. David may have also had Joshua, Judges, Ruth, and fragments of few other Old Testament books.
Amidst the history of mankind, promises, covenants, history of Israel, laws, do’s and don’ts, various instructions and genealogies, David in his meditation of these passages, has found God – learned of His character: His trustworthiness, His faithfulness, His steadfast love, His truthfulness, His mercy, His holiness, His hatred for sin, His glory, His desire to exalt His word, His desire to be known, worshipped, obeyed and imitated was all learned from studying the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.
If the study of just five books of the Bible led a man to confess the supremacy of God’s word and transformed his responses toward sin, how much more should the study of 66 books lead us to love, and affirm David’s understanding of God’s word and drive our responses toward sin?
God has graciously blessed us with a man who puts in 20-30 hours a week to study His Word, and who labors to impart his understanding to us, yet sadly, most weeks, including yours truly, we walk away, unchanged. Just another Sunday. Check.
Even when the word of God is taught to us, I/we respond inconsistently.
Our problem is that we think of the study of God’s word as a chore as opposed to it being our lifeline to lead changed lives, not just to increase our knowledge but to become Christlike.
What is the role of God’s word in your daily life? Do you consume Scripture to increase in the knowledge of Christ and to become like Him?
If it’s a chore, over time busy things in life will take over Bible study. Man’s words “spiritual or secular” will carry more weight than God’s word in your life leading to your eventual downfall.
I often remind myself of Dr. Albert Mohler’s statement from his book The Conviction to Lead: 25 Principles for Leadership that Matters. He wrote, "our spiritual maturity will never exceed our knowledge of the Bible".
Do you think we’ll be held to a higher standard because we have 61 more books of the Bible than David had? I think so. With more revelation comes more responsibility.
After a “spiritual” conversation with us, may people walk away convinced that we genuinely love God’s word and that we are being changed by it.
Heavenly Father, you have magnified your word according to your name which is above all names (Psalm 138:2). We praise you for that.
Our soul clings to the dust; we are broken; please give us life according to your word (Psalm 119:25), for your word is firmly fixed in the heavens forever (Psalm 119:89). We praise you for that.
Please help us to delight in your word. Please help us to meditate on it day and night. (Psalm 1:2).
Every time we sit down to study God’s word, please open our eyes to look for the things that we should be looking for (Psalm 119:18).
Please may we deny self rather than reject your word when it contradicts our lifestyle.
Even if it would cost us the world to know the Scriptures as you have intended for us to know, please help us to give it up, to become like our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
We implore you in the name of your Holy Son, Amen.