~Job 28:28 And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.

When the Christian is in the middle of a crisis, as Job was, he must ask himself this question:

Am I where I should be in my walk with God?

There’s no sense asking this question if the believer is living his life in rebellion and does not want to know the answer. The Christian who truly wants to know will seek God’s face and will search His Word to find out the answers.  (II Timothy 2:15)

The Lord spoke and said that the fear of God is wisdom and departing from evil is understanding.  (Psalm 111:10, Proverbs 1:7, Proverbs 9:10, Proverbs 15:33) When a believer rightly fears God and has a moral reverence for God, he will desire the things of God – and the one who does not fear God won’t desire the things of God. (Job 13:3, Galatians 4:9) The one who desires to walk more closely with God will have the need to be in the Word, studying and learning, and applying it to his spiritual walk. The results produce a Christian who receives understanding from His God.

Are there areas in your life where you do not acknowledge God’s words?  Do you pick and choose what you will obey? To obey only in certain areas is quenching the Holy Spirit’s work in your spiritual life. (I Thessalonians 5:19) Are you in the midst of a trial and it is due to neglecting God’s Word and His instruction? You will not receive wisdom and understanding if you are in direction contradiction to what God is saying and the word of God says that is rebellion. (Nehemiah 9:17, Proverbs 17:11)  Repent of this rebellion and fix your eyes on God’s word. Let His Holy Spirit instruct you in the way you should go. (Psalm 119:105)

Seeing your God with the reverential awe He deserves will humble you and will open your heart to His instruction. Departing from known sin is a start. You know in your heart when you have sinned – admit that and turn away from it. It is then that you will receive that wisdom and understanding.

Psalm 119:97-104

MEM
97 O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.
98 Thou through thy commandments hast made me wiser than mine enemies: for they are ever with me.
99 I have more understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation.
100 I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts.
101 I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word.
102 I have not departed from thy judgments: for thou hast taught me.
103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.

Journaling:

1. Find all the things the Bible will do for you
2. Find the things you are suppose to do with your Bible
3. Find the things the Bible is likened to

These verses are extremely controversial, aren’t they? Many “church” leaders tell their people that only they can interpret the Scriptures.  I came out of such a religion (Roman Catholicism).  Granted, the Catholic Church has backed down a bit and now allows its members to read the Bible, but this was not always the case.  But their permission comes with a “warning” that the layman’s interpretation may be wrong so they must double check with their priest to be certain.

This is quite different from what today’s verses state! Let me ask you, dear reader, a question.  Is God’s word true or isn’t it?  If you have not read yesterday’s devotional, take a moment to read it now before continuing then click on “Back” on your Browser.  John 17:17 says that God’s word is truth.  Jesus spoke these words and, furthermore, He states that the word sanctifies us – it sets us apart, but from whom or what?

The Psalmist confirms in Psalm 119:98-100 that by reading God’s word, and meditating on it, he can be wiser than his enemies, even his teachers and the “ancients” (his forefathers). These same “church” leaders will tell you that the “fundies” (fundamentalists) are incorrectly interpreting the Scriptures.  Others claim that we cannot have God’s word today because the “original autographs” are not here any longer. However, the word says in 2 Peter 1:20-21 that NO scripture is of ANY private interpretation.  Psalm 12:6-7 promises us that the word is preserved by God.  It is the Holy Spirit of God that impressed upon holy men as to what to write down.  To deny this truth is to deny the power of God!

We can and we do have the ability to read God’s word, as a born-again Christian, and understand what we are reading without needing anyone to interpret it for us!  Why? Because the Holy Spirit of God resides within us and interprets to us what the words mean.  Look at James 1:5!  We don’t need to get our wisdom from man: In fact, man’s wisdom is foolishness to God – I Corinthians 3:19.  I will probably receive a few comments on this post from precious, deceived Roman Catholics, asking how I can account for so many different interpretations of the same verse by Christians. Let me answer these comments right here and now. Let’s look at the following passage and you will see how CLEAR God makes it for us:

~I Corinthians 2:10-16 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. 11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. 15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. 16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

Who reveals the word of God to us?  I Corinthians 2:10 says that God, the Holy Spirit does. Furthermore, the Holy Spirit searches the deep things of God because man cannot do so (1 Corinthians 2:11).  Paul continues to tell us that the born-again Christian does not have the spirit of the world any longer but the spirit, which is of God (HIS Holy Spirit). Because we have His Holy Spirit living within us, I Corinthians 2:12 continues to say that He will give to us the wisdom – He will explain to us exactly what He meant. Furthermore, I Corinthians 2:13 says that He will teach us what we need to know so we can compare spiritual things with spiritual! Lastly, dear friend, 1 Corinthians 2:14 explains why there are so many different interpretations. The ones who interpret differently are considered “natural man” by Paul. The natural man, the unsaved man, cannot receive the things of the Holy Spirit! The Bible will sound foolish to them. Christ, through His precious Holy Spirit teaches the born-again Christian and gives us the mind of Christ. If you step into a church filled with true born-again Christians, you will hear the same interpretation of Scripture amongst them. It is only in the world that the Bible is misinterpreted. Why? Because it is being interpreted by those who do not possess the Holy Spirit – the unsaved!

God is the one who gives wisdom to His child (James 1:5).  He promises to give ample wisdom to those who seek it.  Wisdom comes from fearing (reverencing) God.  Read: Psalm 111:10, Proverbs 1:7, and Proverbs 9:10.  When one fears God, he recognizes that he is a sinner in need of repentance unto salvation.  At the moment that sinner recognizes his sinfulness and need for Christ, he begins to receive wisdom.  That wisdom applied results unto salvation and, then, understanding followed.  Read Job 28:28.  Once we are saved, we run away from evil – that is our desire as I Peter 3:10-12 instructs.  Today’s “supposed Christian” mingles with the world and does not run away from evil.  That is why they cannot understand the Scriptures.  First off, they are not truly born again as II Corinthians 5:17 plainly explains.  That is the key to living a separated life unto Christ.  How can a Christian live by I Peter 1:16 except he have the Holy Spirit residing in him?  We are blessed with the ability and power to say “No!” to sin.  We have the ability to quote Scripture when in the midst of temptation and be able to overcome it (I Corinthians 10:13).

God loves His child and provides us with clear teaching as to how to find Him, receive Him, and to follow Him!  Any author can tell you that he/she is the best one to interpret their work because they wrote it.  Why, then, would God leave us at the mercy of someone else’s interpretation of His word?

Praise His holy name!!

~Psalm 119:33-40

HE
33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end.
34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.
35 Make me to go in the path of thy commandments; for therein do I delight.
36 Incline my heart unto thy testimonies, and not to covetousness.
37 Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity; and quicken thou me in thy way.
38 Stablish thy word unto thy servant, who is devoted to thy fear.
39 Turn away my reproach which I fear: for thy judgments are good.
40 Behold, I have longed after thy precepts: quicken me in thy righteousness.

Journaling:

1. Find all the things the Bible will do for you
2. Find the things you are suppose to do with your Bible
3. Find the things the Bible is likened to

Today’s text reveals the heart of our Psalmist. For eight verses, he petitions the Lord God:

  1. He asks to be “taught” – who can teach better than the Author of our faith? (Hebrews 12:2)
  2. He asks to be “given understanding” – who better to open our eyes than God Himself? (Jeremiah 33:3)
  3. He asks to be made to “go” – who better to lead us than the Shepherd? (Psalm 23:1-3)
  4. He asks to be “inclined” – who better to bend our hearts to righteousness than the Holy Spirit who quickens the heart? (Psalm 51:10)
  5. He asks to be “turned away” from vanity – who better to guide us and help us to turn away from the world but the Father? (1 John 2:15-16)
  6. He asks to be “stablished” – who better to stablish us than the One who has been since the beginning and whose words and promises are established forever? (2 Samuel 7:25-29)
  7. He asks to be “turned away from his reproach” – who better to keep us from reproach than the One who can keep us from falling? (Jude 1:24)
  8. He asks to be “quickened” – who better than the Holy Spirit of God who does a work in our hearts as we read His word? (Romans 8:11)

Do we love God’s word with the same intensity as the Psalmist? Do we read it with the same hopes and desires as he had? Today’s text is a wonderful prayer to start the day with as I read my Bible and waiting to hear from God! What earthly father would not desire to give his child anything after his child petitions him in this manner? How much more our Heavenly Father?

~Psalm 147:5 Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite.

This same Creator … this same Shepherd … this same God who created us and loves us has great power! This same God who can move mountains can move the weight of mountains from your shoulders! Are you burdened with the cares of life? Are you struggling with cancer or a chronic illness today? Are you in the middle of a rough marriage? God understands. God knows exactly what you are going through and is waiting to help you.

Sometimes He helps without us even asking. He knows how much we can take and He never gives us more than we can handle. That is why He sends blessings our way to give us reprieve from our burden.

Turn to Him today … He’s waiting to lead you to the still waters so you can rest and drink. Let Him do the guarding … let Him do the fighting … let Him do the problem solving! Enjoy His peaceful rest.

~Matthew 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

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~John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

This time of year is where people hear about “peace” the most. But what kind of peace does this world have to offer? It comes disguised in materialism. However, “things” bring only temporary happiness. There is no permanent joy in “things.” They do not bring peace at all. In fact, the more stuff we have, the more we have to worry about. Isn’t it a conundrum?

Our precious Saviour is the only one who can truly give this peace and joy – and His comes with a guarantee of eternal life! What blessings! One can be in the middle of a spiritual battle, a physical ailment, or an emotional struggle – but yet, peace surrounds them like a warm blanket! Christ knows what we are going through every step of the way. As we ache when our children are hurting, so does He. He is always waiting to comfort us!

Let Christ work in your heart this Christmas season. There’s no reason to be caught up in worry and stress. Reach out to Him for the peace which is beyond your comprehension!!

~Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.