“Open my eyes, that I may behold wonderful things from Thy Law.” Psalm 119:18 NASB
“But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
And in His law he meditates day and night.” Psalm 1:2
“Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.” Joshua 1:8 NLT
Biblical meditation is deep thinking on the truths and spiritual realities revealed in Scripture for the purposes of understanding, application, and prayer.* Deep thinking with the purpose of allowing God to transform us into His image.
“Meditation is the act of reflecting on, pondering, musing over, or contemplating. Meditation is not mind-wandering or indulging in “mental drifting;” instead it has form and an object. Bible verses and scriptural concepts are the focus of a Christian’s meditation.
When we meditate, we spend a few moments directing our thoughts to a single subject. Meditation is thinking with a purpose. Meditation is not a solemn, academic exercise. It requires an attitude of curiosity and expectation, leading to exciting discoveries, refreshment of spirit, and transformation of character. It brings reward and benefit. When we meditate, we purposefully sort through information for clarification, application, categorization, and assimilation.” **
Meditation is inherent in scripture memorization. The very process of memorizing a passage of God’s word involves slowly and thoughtfully repeating phrases over and over, mulling them over in the mind, and ruminating on them, as a cow chews its cud. In this process, it is natural to ask ourselves questions, such as:
- Why did God say it this way?
- Why did He use that word rather than an alternative?
- What are the implications for my life? How am I to apply this truth?
- How do I see examples of this truth being played out in life, in the world around me? In both positive and negative examples?
O Lord, I am broken, clueless, and helpless. Fix me. Transform me into the image of Your Son. Deeply, indelibly imprint in my mind and heart Your truth, and let it bear fruit in my character and in the ability to help others.
* Donald Whitney, Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life, p. 48, NavPress, 1991.
**Bearing Fruit in God’s Family, p. 14, NavPress, 2011.