OYB 2009: 03 January

Filed in ReligionTags: Christianity, Devotions, One Year Bible

Today´s reading:

Genesis 5:1-7:24 ◊ Matthew 3:7-4:11 ◊ Psalm 3:1-8 ◊ Proverbs 1:10-19

One Year Bible Blog

The One Year Bible Blog´s comments for today, which asks:

Are you memorizing Scripture on a regular basis? Are you bringing Scripture to mind when faced with temptation or sadness or whatever ails you? I would love to know which verses you have found useful in your life? Do you have advice on how to best go about memorizing Scripture? Will you join me in my plan to memorize more Scripture verses in 2009? Also, what verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings?

I have always stressed the importance of memorizing Scripture. My first year through the One Year Bible, each day I highlighted a notable Scripture, many of which I memorized. Many years in Bible Bowl, I memorized the text, which consisted of about 40 chapters of a book (or several books) of the Bible.

That said, as I mentioned yesterday, I believe that it is not the memorization that is key, but rather an attitude or desire to have the Word ingrained in one's heart and mind. The desire and act of memorizing Scripture is but fruit borne from that attitude/desire - important fruit, to be sure; but merely fruit, nevertheless. It is the attitude of delight in God's Law that leads us to meditate upon it, yields a desire to know God's Word so deeply as to memorize it, facilitates its memorization, and enables us to bring His Word to mind and to apply it in resisting temptation and mastering the sin that crouches at the door.

Likewise with the temptation of Christ, the part of the story that is sometimes overlooked is that between Christ's baptism and temptation is a period of fasting. Undoubtedly, during the 40 days and nights this fast, Jesus immersed Himself in prayer and meditation. I have heard some say that this forty-day fast left Jesus in a weakened physical state, and therefore more susceptible to temptation. However, I would counter that this forty-day fast left Jesus in a heightened spiritual state, and therefore better prepared to resist temptation.