By Reverend Mark Hunnemann
Thomas Brooks was a Puritan who lived from 1608-1680. In 1652 he wrote the classic "Precious Remedies Against Satan's Devices".Contrary to popular notions, the Puritans were neither miserable nor ignorant of spiritual warfare.A common theme amongst Puritan pastors was how to 'live sweetly in Jesus.'
Have you ever lamented the gap between your knowledge about God/bible and a sweet, deep, moment by moment walk with Christ? I certainly have! How does one bridge this gap between knowledge about... and personal knowledge of God? We should be wary of simple (1,2,3) summaries of how to live a godly life.And due to the world, flesh, and the devil there will always be some gap..we will not experience perfection until we die or Jesus returns.However, the following quote from Brooks touches on what I think is the key to both intimacy with Jesus and victory over the devil.
"Remember that it is not hasty reading, but serious meditation on holy and heavenly truths, that makes them prove sweet and profitable to your soul. It is not the mere touching of the flower by the bee that gathers honey, but her abiding for a time on the flower that draws out the sweet. It is not he that reads most, but he that meditates most, that will prove to be the choicest, sweetest, wisest, and strongest Christian." (from Introduction...Precious Remedies Against Satan's Devices)
Isn't that wonderful?!
Let me put the earlier question a different way--have you ever read the bible in the morning, but by the end of the day realized you had forgotten what you read?! Or at least realized that you hadn't thought much about what you had read?
Nothing can break our union with Christ, but our COMMUNION with Christ (existential intimacy) goes up and down during the day. John 15 tells us to abide in the Vine because apart from Him we can't do anything. The key to abiding is meditating on His Word.This is something God will not do for us. It is our responsibility to continually call to mind throughout the day what we had read earlier (that assumes we had read earlier!) Biblical meditation always has biblical content as its focus, unlike the content-less eastern meditation.
Like many of you there are a lot of books I want to read. However, over the years I have learned to slow down when reading, including non-inspired books. How much more so when reading the very oracles of the Living God! By meditating on the Word we walk with God like Enoch did. By meditating on what we read we draw out its honey throughout the day, and are spiritually nourished. A by-product of intimacy with the Lord is overcoming the devil. Every pore of our being was created for moment by moment intimacy with our Creator and Redeemer. Let us strive to close the gap by meditating on God's holy Word...from morning to evening.
Mark Hunnemann is the author of Seeing Ghosts Through God's Eyes: A Worldview Analysis of Earthbound Spirits. It's also available in eBook format.