Battle Plan – Strategy 2 – The Scriptures

Strategy 2.  I am renewing my mind actively and regularly by reading, memorizing and meditating on Scripture. 

In each of these strategies I put the statement as an affirmative statement of fact. That helps us focus on what the goal is. It is a true or false statement. Within our own hearts we know whether the statement is true for us or not.  Is this true: I am renewing my mind actively and regularly by reading, memorizing and meditating on Scripture.

Here we have another essential personal discipline that gets overlooked all too often. We are constantly looking for the secret of this or that as though there were hidden methods for being successful in the Christian life. There are no secrets. It’s all right there out in the open. We just don’t do it.

Romans12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

It’s important to be renewing our minds. God says this is the way that transformation takes place. And the Christian method of renewing the mind is to spend time reading, memorizing and meditating on Scripture. There is no shortcut. Consider these passages:

Psalm 1:1-3  Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper. (Emphasis mine.)

It’s interesting to note that in verse 4, the Psalmist says that the ungodly are not like this. The question we need to ask ourselves is, “Am I like this?” If not, I am putting myself into the category of the ungodly. Is that where I want to be?

Joshua 1:8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. (Emphasis mine)

Psalm 119:11 Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You.

Take some time every day to be in the Scripture. Read a portion and spend some time thinking deeply about it.  Begin a Scripture memory plan. Memorize one verse a week or one every other week. Write the verse on a 3×5 card and review it every day until you have it learned and then go on to another.

If you are not doing these basic things, you cannot expect to have victory over sin and temptation you may be facing. Don’t look for other solutions. Spending time in prayer and in the Word is foundational to victory.

Priority Goal 2: I am going to spend time each day reading and meditating on the Word of God.

If this is your goal, take a moment right now and determine where in your schedule you will put this important activity. What scripture passage will you begin to read today? Find a notebook where you can jot down questions and thoughts that come to mind as you meditate. Do this now.

Basic Devotion Plan

Sometimes it’s hard for people to figure out how to have a regular devotional life when life is busy and time is limited. I’ve put together a 20 minute plan that might be helpful as a start. I’m not suggesting that only 20 minutes is ideal, but I’m trying to help get you started on a regular practice.

Basic Devotion Plan

20 minute quiet time; 10 minutes in the Word; 5-8 minutes in prayer; 2-3 minutes reviewing memory verse for the week. Do this at a time when you are alert, not just when you are ready to crash. If you have to, get up a little earlier, shower, eat a little something and then take time for this.

 

4 times a week. (You could make it 5 if you think you can). There’s no commitment as to which days, but by Wednesday night 2 should be done and by Sunday morning 2 more.

I’ve broken up Ephesians into small sections below. Do not read more than one section. Read and think about the same section for the full ten minutes.

Buy a small notebook to keep prayer list and notes in. Put your prayer list(s) starting in the back and use the front for writing down one comment or question or challenge or encouragement you got from the day’s reading. Every day write at least one sentence, comment, question or thought.

Don’t allow any interruptions.

Develop a prayer list – keep it simple: someone’s name and a word or two to remind you what the key point is. After you’ve added and crossed things out, create a fresh page.

 

Ephesians 1:1-6; 7-14; 15-23

Ephesians 2:1-7; 8-13; 14-22

Ephesians 3:1-7; 8-13; 14-21

Ephesians 4:1-6; 7-16; 17-24; 25-32

Ephesians 5:1-7; 8-14; 15-21; 22-33

Ephesians 6:1-9; 10-20; 21-24

 

Before you go to bed, read one chapter of Proverbs based on whatever date it is. On Nov 15th, read chapter 15. Then short prayer thanking God for the day’s blessings.

 

Let me know what you think.

 

Memorization Monday

Hebrews 3:12–13 (NKJV)

12 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; 13 but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

 

Note that calls an unbelieving heart an evil heart. One of the solutions to the danger of slipping away into an attitude of unbelief is that we as Christians should be exhorting one another daily. Usually we only get to see each other once or twice a week and then it is usually very superficial. We need to be involved in one another’s lives in such a way that we can stir one another up to love and good works.

 

These verses are Fighter Verses provided through the following site:

http://fighterverses.com/set-4-core-esv/week-50/

Scripture Memory Resource – Fighter Verses

Scripture memorization is an important key to maturing in the faith. It is also an essential ingredient for meditation on the Scriptures since it allows us to have God’s Word readily available in our minds for mulling over while we are driving or doing other things where we can’t have an open Bible in front of us.

One of the best resources for Scripture memorization in this technological age is the Fighter Verses Program developed in conjunction with Desiring God Ministries. They provide apps for both iPhone and Android platforms.

There is a basic 5 year program with one verse a week for five years. Each week, you are notified through your app that a new verse is ready for the coming week. Here is their description of this program:

The Fighter Verses focus on 1) the character and worth of our great God, 2) battling against our fleshly desires, and 3) the hope of the Gospel. This five-year memory program is a revision of the original program (now called the Legacy Set), and includes many verses from the original set as well as many new verses.

Their extended program features longer passages still in a 5 year format. Here is their description:

The Extended Memory Set is designed for those who wish to memorize longer passages of Scripture. Still structured as a five-year program, this set will walk you through memorizing Philippians, James, Romans 5-8, the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7), and one year of larger passages from various books of the Bible that are considered key to the life of faith.

If you would like to get started in this program, here is the link: http://fighterverses.com

Here is a link to my website where I provide some other memory programs that are available. http://www.faithful-men.org/p/resources-memorization.html

 

 

Memorization Monday

For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.” (Colossians 1:19–20, NKJV)

 

Jesus Christ is the fullness of God. It pleased the Father that all fullness should abide in him. And then there is the need for reconciliation. One of Jesus Christ’s missions is to reconcile all things to God. This includes both the things that are on earth and the things that are in heaven. And he accomplished this reconciliation through the blood that he shed on the cross. Why is there need for reconciliation? Because when sin entered the universe and ultimately the world and mankind, a great chasm was opened that separated us from God. Jesus Christ bridges that chasm and reconciles all things to God. God takes back from Satan that which he had stolen from God in the first place. And now there is peace through the blood of his cross.