1 BIBLICAL MEDITATION . for SPIRITUAL breakthrough . By Elmer Towns Published by REGAL BOOKS. CONTENTS. DEDICATION. INTRODUCTION. Non-Christian MEDITATION is about methods, positions, and mantras. Unsaved people meditate on what they want to become. Christian MEDITATION is about God and its source, the Bible. 1 THE LOST ART OF MEDITATION . 2 THE DAVID MODEL: CONSIDERING GOD'S CREATION AND MAJESTY. David, the shepherd had meditated on the power of God he saw in Creation and out of that experience, penned his greatest Psalms that describes God's omnipotence. 3 THE MARY MODEL: PONDERING THE PERSON OF JESUS. Mary, the one closest to Jesus, often pondered on the Savior to whom she gave birth, and the Divine One who ate at her table. 4 THE ST. JOHN MODEL: THINKING ABOUT THE CROSS. The only disciple who witnessed the crucifixion, exhorts us to behold the cross to understand the love of God.
2 5 THE JOSHUA MODEL: FOCUSING ON BIBLICAL PRINCIPLES. The greatest general in Israel's history commands us to memorize and meditate on principles of Scripture to be successful in life. 6 THE ST. PAUL MODEL: BECOMING LIKE CHRIST. Paul who was so single-focused in life, tells us to press for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. 7 THE TIMOTHY MODEL: MEDITATING ON YOUR CALLING AND GIFTS. Timothy was told to lead the church to a new level after the apostles were gone, by meditating on his calling and gifts. 8 THE HAGGAI MODEL: CONSIDERING YOUR FAILURES. Haggai uses the word consider over and over to remind us to consider our failures so we can learn how to overcome them. 9 ASAPH MODEL: MEDITATING ON GOD'S INTERVENTION. Twelve Psalms written by Asaph reflect his fears and frustrations and how he meditated on God's intervention.
3 10 THE MALACHI MODEL: MEDITATION ON GOD'S NAMES. Malachi reminds us that God gets worship when we meditate on His name and He keeps written records of those who do. 11 THE KORAH FACTOR: CONTEMPLATING INTIMACY WITH GOD. Twelve Psalms tell us to meditate on God to become intimate with Him. EPILOGUE. APPENDICES. A MEDITATION THAT IS NOT CHRISTIAN. A survey of the different kinds of MEDITATION with a Christian evaluation. B WHAT CHRISTIAN LEADERS SAY ABOUT MEDITATION . Quotations from great Christian leaders about MEDITATION . C A TOPICAL INDEX OF SCRIPTURES ON MEDITATION . A comprehensive printing of Scriptures dealing with MEDITATION for comparison and study. DEDICATION. I couldn't think of just one person for the dedication of this book. Most of those who have deeper lives with God, usually are not known for their strength in every area.
4 Since every chapter presents a different type of MEDITATION , I've dedicated each chapter to those who best characterize its lesson. Those who meditate most on God, Quietly go on their daily search, So it's hard to know who meditates on God, They don't talk about it much. TO THOSE I APPRECIATE. David Model: Harold Willmington, author of Willmington's Bible Handbook (Tyndale House) because of his majestic concept of God. Mary Model: Mark Lowry, my former student who wrote the words of a song, Mary Did You Know That When You Kissed Your Baby Boy You Were Kissing The Face of God? St. John Model: Wesley Afleck, the President before me of Winnipeg Bible College, who understood and loved Calvary. Joshua Model: Ed Reis, a Navigator who taught me the importance of Bible memory and application.
5 St. Paul Model: Bill Greig, Jr., President of Gospel Light, because he has a passion for the excellence of Christ. Timothy Model: Charles Ryrie, my mentor at Dallas Theological Seminary, who taught me it was imperative to know my SPIRITUAL gifts. Haggai Model: John Maxwell, a friend who knows how to face and solve problems. Asaph Model: Jerry Falwell, who constantly is delivered by God from attacks because he's never afraid to confront an immoral issue. Malachi Model: John Morrison, a teacher who works for me, who has a passion to know the nature of God. Korah Model: Laura Oldham, my wife's friend, who is intimate with God and exemplifies MEDITATION . INTRODUCTION. I was converted to Christ on July 25, 1950. Since that evening, I have never once doubted the reality of my salvation.
6 I know intuitively the presence of Christ in my life that I cannot explain except by the phrase Christ lives in me (Galatians 2:20). On the first Easter Sunday after my conversion, I experienced a special sense of communion with God that I had not felt previously. At the time I was discouraged. I knew I was saved and that Christ lived in me, but I still felt discouraged. About 9:00 that morning, I found myself waiting for a ride to take me to Capital View Community Chapel just outside Columbia, South Carolina. I. was scheduled to teach a Sunday School class that morning, but my ride was late. While I waited for 30 minutes, I meditated on what the Bible meant for Christ to live in me. I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me - Galatians 2:20.
7 I tried to determine what the two phrases meant, I am crucified with Christ and the other phrase, I live, but Christ lives in me. Then it dawned upon me that the real meaning of Easter was more than Christ dying for my sins, Jesus arose that first Sunday morning and now He lives He lives in my heart. That day was the first Easter of my Christian life and I felt His presence in my life standing on that street corner. I had an overwhelming sense of His fullness. I experienced His presence at work in me. As I stood in the warm morning sunlight, I renewed my commitment to Christ, yielding myself anew to God. I asked Jesus Christ to give me victory by living His faith through me. Jesus Christ had never gotten discouraged, and I wanted to rise above discouragement in my own life. I had been praying God for my financial needs, but at that moment I wanted more.
8 I. wanted His faith to conquer my worry. I completely yielded to Jesus Christ and turned my life over to Him. What I experienced that morning was very real. I did not kneel in prayer or close my eyes. I. simply talked to Jesus and yielded everything to Him. I asked Him to live His life through me. That morning, for the first time I experienced the meaning of the resurrection life. A year earlier, prior to my conversion, the resurrection had been little more than an historical fact. Now Easter was an inner reality. The risen Christ was alive in my life. I knew that inner sense of the presence of Christ would be tested, but that morning I did not have a care in the world. I was experiencing the faith of Christ. Because of what I have experienced in my own life through the discipline of MEDITATION , I.
9 Wanted to write this book to help others experience their own SPIRITUAL breakthrough . I believe many Christians want a deeper and more meaningful relationship with Christ. But they have never been taught how to meditate on Jesus Christ. When they look for help to guide their thinking, there is little help. New believers tend to think the way they thought in their unsaved days. What controls their life? What Controls Our Thinking? Financial Pressure Secularism Promotion and Advancement Pleasure Sex Winning Family Concerns Selfish Pursuits Although the discipline of MEDITATION has played an important contribution to Christian living since the first days of the church, very few meditate on Christian things today. I once asked a man what he thought of his church. I don't think about it much, was his answer.
10 That is probably an accurate description of most Christians. They don't think very often about their church, nor do they think much about Christ. Even when modern people read about MEDITATION in a current magazine, it is not Christian MEDITATION . Most of what we hear is based in Hindu mysticism. Also, New Age practitioners have substituted the influence of pagan MEDITATION in place of a powerful SPIRITUAL discipline, , BIBLICAL MEDITATION . Young people are taught to assume the lotus position with feet crossed and fingers held upward. They chant, Oh-o-o-o-o .., and try to empty their mind of all thoughts .. to become one with God .. to experience Nirvana. They chant mantras or practice yoga. But these are not Christian practices. Christian MEDITATION is not about what methods you use, nor is it about what position you assume, nor is it about what you chant, or how you focus.