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Title: The Art of Christian Meditation.

The Bible has much to say about meditation consider some of these verses.

Joshua 1:8 “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day
and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt
make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”

Psalm 1:2 “But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.”

Psalm 19:14 “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O
LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.”

Psalm 119:15 “I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways.”

1 Timothy 4:15 “Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear
to all.”

The word meditate means to think, to contemplate, or to ponder. It involves mental exercise. Our 21st
century culture has all but eroded our capacity to genuinely think and reflect1 much less contemplate the
things of God. The human brain, however, is so “mind-boggling” in that a single brain can function with
the electronic equivalence of all the radio and television stations in the entire world put together.2 It is
important that we think about what God wants and commands us to think about. Love enflamed by the
Holy Spirit of God enables us to effectively meditate upon God. (cf. Ps. 51:10; Acts 15:8-9; Phil. 2:13)

Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever
things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good
report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

This also leads us to an important point: Christian meditation is not to be confused with Transcendental
Meditation. The two are similar in that both are mental exercises, but the end results are mutually
exclusive. Transcendental Meditation seeks for an altered state of consciousness,3 while Christian
meditation seeks for an altered way of life, one towards Christ-likeness. The former is cultic, destructive
and false, while the latter is Scriptural, helpful, and true.

The Lord Jesus Himself exemplified the need to come apart from the business of ministry work among the
people. He often went to a private place in order to pray and be refreshed (see Mark 3:7; 6:46; 7:24).
Similarly, we need to get away from the things, perhaps even people or situations that inundate our hearts
and minds, and leave us spent, wasted, or empty for God or the things of God. We would do well to follow
our Savior’s example.

1
This has been the thesis of many works including Neil Postman (Amusing Ourselves to Death) and Allan Bloom
(The Closing of the American Mind) among others.
2
R. Kent Hughes, Philippians, Preaching The Word Bible Commentary Series (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2007) pg.
173.
3
Ron Rhodes, Find it Quick Handbook on Cults and New Religions (Eugene, OR: Harvest House, 2005) pg. 199.
Christian Meditation is the compliant, constant, and careful reflection of God, His work and His Word.

1. Christian meditation is a compliant reflection. – It is a matter of the will. Will you take the time to
meditate on God and His Word? (this necessitates a setting a time and a place for reading and
reflection).

A. Psalm 4:4 “Stand in awe, and sin not: commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be
still. Selah.” – Bible meditation involves speaking to your heart. (cf. 1 Sam. 30:6)

B. Psalm 49:3 “My mouth shall speak of wisdom; and the meditation of my heart shall be of
understanding.” – The Psalmist voluntarily engages himself to this important act.

C. Psalm 119:48 “My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I
will meditate in thy statutes.”

D. Psalm 119:78 “Let the proud be ashamed; for they dealt perversely with me without a cause:
but I will meditate in thy precepts.”

E. Psalm 119:148 “Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word.”

Application: It is important that we take the time to study and reflect on God, and His Word. Our
world seeks to rob us of our attention and affection for God. May we learn to obey God’s Word
in compliance with the Scriptural examples and imperatives for thoughtful Christian meditation.

2. Christian meditation is a constant reflection. The Bible teaches us when to meditate.

A. Joshua 1:8a “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate
therein day and night,…”

B. Psalm 1:2 “But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and
night.”

C. Psalm 63:6 “When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night
watches.” – The “night watches” is basically guard duty. David meditates on God even when he
is on guard duty.

D. Psalm 119:97 “MEM. O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.”

Application: We can and should meditate on God “all the day.” As we go about doing our daily
work – We will think or reflect on God, His works, and His word. One way to counter the filth of
this world, its powerful temptations to give into sin, and its constant barrage to abandon God is
to meditate on God. In fact, the most alert times of our schedule is the best time to think, and
ponder the things of God. Perhaps you started out your day with Bible reading, and wrote down
a verse or a spiritual truth that you have gained from the reading of His word; now is the time to
reflect on what God has spoken to you about according to His Word. May we constantly learn to
meditate on God’s Word all throughout the day and then some more at night.
3. Christian meditation is a careful reflection. What exactly should we be meditating on?

A. The person and character of God.

A.1. Psalm 63:6 “When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the
night watches.”

A.2. Psalm 104:34 “My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the LORD.”

Application: When you read the Bible take notice of God’s person and character. Think
about the things He said. Pay attention to His attributes. Jot them down, and include the
verse references. Commit them to memory. Meditating on God and His majesty is a great
blessing.

B. The works of God.

B.1. Psalm 77:12 “I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings.”

B.2. Psalm 143:5 “I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works; I muse on the
work of thy hands.”

Application: God’s work not only consists of Creation and Salvation, but also that of
Providence. He is continually working in our lives. Isn’t it wonderful to know that God is
in the background of our lives actively working His perfect will and way in and through
us?

C. The Word of God.

C.1. Psalm 119:15 “I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways.”

C.2. Psalm 119:48 “My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have
loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes.”

C.3. Psalm 119:97 “MEM. O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.”

Application: A Christian, who is daily in the word, and careful to reflect upon the Scriptures
and its principles, will gain victory over sin, self, the word-system, and Satan.

Remember that wisdom and understanding comes through the proper use and cultivation of Christian
meditation. Christian meditation anchors us to God’s instrument of hope and comfort, i.e. His Word, and
prepares us to think soberly and properly for our spiritual edification. Psalm 119:99 “I have more
understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation.”