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Blue Letter Bible offers several daily devotional readings in order to help you refocus on Christ and the Gospel of His peace and righteousness.

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Recognizing the value of consistent reflection upon the Word of God in order to refocus one’s mind and heart upon Christ and His Gospel of peace, we provide several reading plans designed to cover the entire Bible in a year.

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Richard Bennett :: Chapter 1 Daily Delight

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Food for Faith — Chapter 1

Daily Delight

How sweet are Your words to my taste, Sweeter than honey to my mouth!…Therefore I love Your commandments More than gold, yes, than fine gold!—Psalm 119:103, 127 NKJV.

A short while ago a very gracious Christian lady earnestly requested: “Please pray that I might have a more intimate relationship with the Lord.” Yes there are different degrees of intimacy in any interpersonal relationship. And that is particularly true for Christians in their relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Even in human relationships, the true togetherness of emotional ties can only blossom when accompanied by a blending of wills; a sharing of value systems; an enjoyment of common interests; an honesty of open communication, and a meeting of the minds.

For example, my wife Dorothy and I recently received a letter which brought us both tremendous joy. It came from two Africans. It read: “Yesterday we brought baby Dorothy home from the hospital; like her namesake, she decided to be punctual. Baby Dorothy arrived safely weighing 3 Kg., about 6 1/2 lbs.” What unspeakable joy for them and their family.

How easy it is to identify with the happiness of proud parents when they tenderly carry their newborn home. And the joy continues as the child grows. We goggle with delight when the baby first attempts to kick or to laugh! The tiny toes, the knobby knees, the first step and then that exciting moment when we first hear the word ‘Dada’ or ‘Mama’!

Surely a new baby, with all its potential for growth, is a miracle beyond human comprehension. And even more marvelous is a person who has just been born again—one who has taken the first step on the journey from spiritual birth to spiritual maturity.

Unfortunately, however, life does not always follow the path from the joy of birth to the mature fulfillment of adulthood. Sadly, the very week we received the letter announcing the birth of baby Dorothy, my wife and I also heard that the twenty-one-year-old daughter of longstanding friends in Cincinnati, Ohio, had died. Tragically, in her twenty-one years she had never developed from childhood; either mentally, physically or socially. Though her parents lovingly had named her Carol Joy (the song of joy), when she died Carol was still a baby—a twenty-one year old baby! Her potential to converse with her parents had been stunted. From a human perspective, her life journey had been drastically impaired.

And just as Carol never matured beyond infancy, so, too, many people in the Church today do not seem to have developed beyond spiritual babyhood. Although they may have been Christians for many years, they have never really grown in the Lord. Yet, God has provided spiritual nourishment which, if it is properly digested, will stimulate spiritual growth in the life of every born-again child of God.

The Bible is God’s nutrient to prevent your Christian life from being spiritually stunted. If you are to grow from the spiritual curiosity of babyhood, to the spiritual stability of youth and finally to the spiritual maturity of adulthood, it is imperative that you receive daily nutrition from God’s Word, the Bible. And reading the Bible is intended by God to be more than merely a matter of duty; it is meant to be a refreshing delight in the life of each hungry Christian who partakes of God’s prepared food.

Yes, the Word of God will indeed be a source of constant and growing delight when you understand how to digest it as your own spiritual nourishment.

Through the prophet Isaiah, God graciously invites all those who have a hunger and thirst for spiritual food to dine with Him from His own banqueting table:

Ho! Everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat… Why do you spend money for what is not bread, and your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen diligently to Me, and eat what is good, and let your soul delight itself in abundance. Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live… (Isaiah 55:1-3 NKJV).

Because many people do not seem to understand how they will receive food for their faith as they read God’s Word directly, they find it much easier to read books about the Bible than to actually read the Bible itself. This book in your hands is not intended to explain the Bible, but instead it is meant to encourage you to read the Bible in such a way that it will explain itself! As a result you will increasingly enjoy a life of transparent and intimate fellowship with your Heavenly Father.

I have often said to people who are just beginning to read the Bible as food for their faith:

Read what you understand and soon you may come to something you do not understand. Keep on reading. Before long, you will come to something you do understand. Gradually, what you understand will help you to understand what you did not understand!

Does that make sense to you? In other words, never give up.

All over the world—in classrooms, in lecture halls and in libraries—people are digesting academic information that provides them with much ‘food for thought’. If we, in like manner, approach the Bible merely as a religious textbook, all we will receive is just that—food for thought. Yet the Bible itself warns us that: Knowledge puffs up, [but it is] love [that] builds up (1 Corinthians 8:1 NIV).

Yes, unless we understand how to properly digest the Word of God, even a knowledge of Bible truth can puff us up with intellectual pride, rather than build us up in our spiritual life. Instead of merely gaining knowledge during our daily time together with our Lord, we need to receive nourishment from His banqueting table that will provide us with ‘food for faith’.

In striking contrast to those who read the Bible as only an academic exercise are the many joyful believers who have discovered the secret of reading the Word of God so that it becomes a practical and living source of true spiritual nourishment in their lives. These Christians are experiencing the growing reality of a life of fellowship with God and in the process are discovering the way of genuine worship and fruitful service. To such people the bondage of self-consciousness will give way to the blessing of God-consciousness.

To approach God confidently and personally each day with an open Bible and an open heart is the wonderful privilege of every born-again Child of God.

The question you may be asking is: What is the best way to read the Bible so that it will nourish my soul and enable me to grow in the love and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ? The secret is found in what we will call a Together Time—a time for togetherness with the Lord.

Together Time is really a two-way conversation with our living Lord. Through His Word, the Bible, God speaks to His children. As we respond correctly and personally to what God is saying, we will learn how to pray biblically and with expectant faith.

When I speak about ‘praying biblically’, I mean that we actually use the very words of the Scriptures we are reading when we respond to our Lord in prayer. To pray biblically is to enjoy a growing assurance of praying in accordance with the will of God.

As the Holy Spirit makes God’s Word living to us, we use those exact words of Scripture and relate them to the concerns that may be upon our heart. Praying in this way, we will be saved from stereotyped prayers. Instead, when we pray biblically, we will enjoy privileged fellowship with the Lord as we enter into a growing understanding of His own concerns and purposes in our life.

True prayer is not the bending of God’s will to mine, but it is the bending of my will to the will of God. After Joshua had miraculously led the Children of Israel through the River Jordan during the springtime floods, he encountered an unknown ‘man.’ Joshua knew that in Canaan his mandate from God was to conquer the land and to cleanse it from its pagan practices. Therefore, Joshua asked of this stranger, who had a sword drawn in his hand, Are you for us or for our adversaries? The strange answer Joshua received was ‘No!’ or as the NIV Bible translates the word Neither. Joshua assumed from this answer that the stranger would not take sides. Then came the words that clarified the answer given by the stranger: but as Commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.

At that point, Joshua rightfully recognized that instead of taking sides, the stranger was about to take control! Falling on his face as an indication of yieldedness, Joshua knew he was in the presence of the Commander of the Lord’s army. For the place where you stand is holy (Joshua 5:13-15 NKJV).

Likewise, in our own times of prayer, we should not bring our personal agenda to God and then ask Him to be with us, but instead we should bow in His Holy Presence to attune ourselves to His plans, His purposes and His power.

Thus, to pray biblically is to pray in harmony with the purposes and will of God. And this bending of our will to His can be the growing experience of each one of us as we learn to align ourselves with God’s Word whenever we pray.

Yes, when you prayerfully read the Bible with a genuine desire to hear from God, you will grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18 NKJV).

As we have already observed, Isaiah stated that when we incline our ears to really hear God’s voice, then we will truly delight in what He has to say.

Spiritual Check-up

  1. How long is it since I first became a born-again Christian?
  2. Did I ever enjoy a closer fellowship with God than I do now?
  3. In comparing my life today with that of five years ago:
    • Do I spend more time alone with God?
    • Can I better distinguish God’s guidance from my own desires?
Forward and Preface ← Prior Section
Chapter 2 The Head and the Heart Next Section →

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.


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