Stand Firm: Security in the Truth of Jesus’ Salvation

Our previous post in this series ‘Stand Firm,’ took a look at The Lies We Believe and ways which we can expect Satan to be working in the battles of Spiritual Warfare. We found that deception was not only a key component of his arsenal, but also his character. In light of this, it is not at all surprising that, in reading about the armour of God, the first item we are to put on in order to stand firm in battle against Satan, is the belt of truth. “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist” (Eph. 6:14).  As we begin looking at these different aspects of the armour, it is important that we realise that these are primarily not virtuous actions that we are to start doing when we sense Satan is at work; rather, these are all ways of describing the impact of the gospel. That is, as we meditate and apply the gospel to our life daily, the belt of truth will always be buckled around our waist, and we will always be in a position to stand firm.
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Heart Questions: Putting Jesus’ Words into Practice

On the very last page of my Bible, I am slowly developing a list of questions—mostly ones that I come across in my reading, but some which come about through reflecting. I call these ‘heart questions;’ they are ones which I ask to my heart, in a very broad sense, ‘how am I going at this area of life?’ I also use it as a method to remember things I have been struck or convicted by in past reading to ensure I continue to focus on and invest in pursuing Christ and growing in His likeness. They are not questions based on spiritual disciplines (e.g. ‘How have I been going at reading my Bible?’ ‘Am I praying every day?’), but are rather the practical, fruitful outworking of these things; they are an indication of being in a posture allowing the transformation of the Holy Spirit. This might be something along the lines of, “Am I aware of God’s peace in my day to day life?” “Does my life demonstrate to others that I have complete trust in God,” etc. As I was spending time with God recently, I came across another of these questions to add to my list, and thought that putting together such a list could also be helpful for others as a reference to prompt prayer or reflection, or for considering ways to be growing in greater obedience to God. I will compile them into a page (which you can access from the home page), and plan to include a link to the short post I write about them when they are first added to provide a bit more context to the questions.

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The Reading Rut: Reflecting (#5 of 6)

REFLECTING ON GOD’S WORD

“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lordand on his law he meditates day and nightHe is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away.” (Psalm 1:1-4) [emphasis mine]

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The Reading Rut: Routine – (#4 of 6)

When I first planned this series of the ‘Reading Rut,’ this post was not included in my plan. But as I constructed the previous articles, I realized that the following is an important aspect of reading that needs to be considered. So far, we have looked at some pretty important and encouraging reasons why we should be reading The Bible. In light of these, I hope that it has been clear that reading the Bible is not an aim to be achieved in itself; that is, it is not so we can tell others that we are ticking the Bible-reading box, or even to feel that we are fulfilling our ‘requirements’ as a Christian before God. Rather, it is a means to a greater end—Christ-likeness for God’s glory. Because of this purpose, the way we approach and undertake reading the Bible is incredibly important.

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The Reading Rut: Reasons Part 2 – (#3 of 6)

Why Read the Bible Regularly?

In my previous post, I explored a few reasons why we should be reading God’s Word; that it is God’s chosen way of communicating with us, that it aids our growth by teaching us, correcting us and equipping us to live a godly life, and like a roadmap, it tells us where we are, where we are going and how we get there, giving us an eternal perspective.
These are all very good and important reasons, but if you are someone like me who has grown up as a Christian or has read a lot of your Bible in the past, there is the potential to justify not reading your Bible because you already know the stories and the general gist of it. You know the roadmap already, you know what is regarded as sinful and what glorifies God, so what more knowledge are you going to gain? Aside from the fact that I feel like we are actually never going to stop learning and growing in understanding of God’s Word because it’s so deep and huge, there are many more reasons why we should become disciplined in reading the Bible regularly. Continue reading

The Reading Rut – (#1 of 6)

All of us have been there at some point before; you may even be there right now. And despite the guilt, shame, and knowing that you really just need to get onto it and fix it, it often seems like no amount of trying and good intentions can get you out of it. I’m talking about a reading rut—a place where reading God’s Word is just not a regular part of your day-to-day life, or even life at all. I have seen this countless times, and for a variety of reasons; a dislike of reading in general, loss of motivation, habit that has been lost, squeezed for time, perceived lack of fruit, not understanding the passage or seeing its relevance, or a sense of distance from God.

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