Just For Today
A Daily Approach to Prayer and Scripture
Friday, February 27
“Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your law.”
Ps 119:18 NKJV
STUDY YOUR BIBLE (1)
Let’s consider some practical suggestions for getting more out of your Bible study: Schedule it. If you don’t, it won’t happen. Learn to say no to unimportant things. For many of us the biggest obstacle to studying the Bible is television; the average person watches over four hours every day. Do the math: That’s sixty-one days a year—two months! By age eighteen the average person has seen 200,000 acts of violence, including 16,000 murders. And by age sixty-five they’ve spent about nine and one-half years watching TV. By contrast, if you went to Sunday school regularly from birth until age sixty-five, you’d only have had a total of four months of Bible teaching. No wonder we struggle spiritually. Discipline yourself by setting aside a specific time each day to study your Bible—and let nothing get in the way. And do it when you’re at your best physically, emotionally, and intellectually, not when you’re distracted and hurried. You know if you’re “a day person” or a “night person,” so pick the time when you’re most alert. The spirit may be willing but the flesh is weak, so if you don’t want your study time to turn into “snore time,” don’t try to study when you’re tired, or right after a big meal. And keep a notebook to jot down your observations and keep track of what God is saying to you. Writing does three things: It clarifies, reinforces, and personalizes. Also, ask yourself, “What’s the takeaway from this passage?” It will help to fix God’s Word firmly in your mind and jog your memory regarding what you’re supposed to do about it.
Saturday, February 28
“I delight…in what you tell me.”
Ps 119:14 TM
STUDY YOUR BIBLE (2)
Spend time in prayer before you study the Bible. Ask the Lord to cleanse you from all known sin and fill you with the Holy Spirit so that you’ll be in fellowship with Him during your study time. Again, the purpose of Bible study isn’t to get new revelations and new rules; it’s to build a relationship with the Author of the Bible. The Psalmist said, “How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your Word” (v. 9 NKJV). Sin doesn’t cancel your relationship with Christ, but it hinders your fellowship with Him. And you have to be in fellowship with Him to understand and apply His Word. So before you search the Scriptures, ask God to search your heart. Paul says, “The unspiritual self …can’t receive the gifts of God’s Spirit…Spirit can be known only by spirit—God’s Spirit and our spirits in open communion” (1Co 2:14-16 TM). It’s possible to read the same portion of Scripture many times, yet fail to see what God wants you to see until He “opens [your] eyes” (See Ps 119:18 NKJV). Once that happens, your attitude toward Bible study will be transformed. Like a hungry man or woman at a table overflowing with good food, you’ll long for and relish God’s Word and your faith will grow. Like Paul said: “No one’s ever seen or heard anything like this, never so much as imagined…what God has arranged for those who love him. But you’ve seen and heard it because God by his Spirit has brought it all out into the open before you” (1Co 2:9-10 TM).