Skip to content

Memorizing Scripture about Memorizing Scripture

March 20, 2016

Memorizing Scripture about Memorizing Scripture

Psalm 119:9-16 (Beth)

  • En garde, prêts, allez. Garda Síochána. A cemetery in Kentucky. A border.
    • Sentinels: A watchman stationed on a wall (2Sam 18:24) or in a watchtower (2Chr 20:24; Isaiah 21:6-9) whose task it was to warn of approaching danger (Ezek 33:2-6; Ps 127:1). Sentinels also guarded the fields and vineyards, especially during harvest season (Isa 5:2; Job 27:18). The term is often used in a figurative or symbolic sense (Isa 62:6; Ezek 3:17; Ezek 33:7-9; Mic 7:4).  (Society of Biblical Literature)
    • New Testament: Death penalty for dereliction of duty (Matthew 28:4; Acts 12:19).
    • U.S. Code of Military Justice (10 U.S.C. § 892. Art. 92): Death penalty for dereliction of duty during wartime.
  • Last Week: Intentionally Enhancing our Faith, our Love and our Focus:
    • Sing Christian songs (Ephesians 5:18-19; Colossians 3:16)
    • Fellowship with other Christians (1 Corinthians 14:26; 1 Thessalonians 5:11; Hebrews 10:24-25; James 5:16; 1 John 1:7)
    • Pray (Luke 22:40; Romans 7:18-24)
    • Bring every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)
    • Study the Bible
    • Without distraction: “Old School” Bibles;
  • Memorize Scripture: Psalm 119:9-16
    • vv. 9-11
    • v. 12
    • vv. 13-16
  • “Guard your Heart.”
    • The Basics
    • Proverbs 4:20-26
    • Proverbs 23:7 and 27:19
    • 1 Samuel 16:7   
    • Being Intentional
  • Examples of Warnings about Not Guarding your Heart
    • Pride: Proverbs 16: 5, 18
    • Grumbling: John 6:43; Philippians 2:14   
    • Quarreling: Romans 16:17; Ephesians 4:31-32
  • Hints and Helps:
  • God’s Word works, to:
    • Define sin (Matthew 5:28; James 1:12-14)
    • Explain the idolatry of sin (Galatians 5:19-21; 1 John 2:15-17)
    • Remind us of our accountability for sin (Romans 14:12; 2 Corinthians 5:10)
    • Celebrate Christ’s victory over sin (Romans 8:9; 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 and 12:9-10; 7:1; Hebrews 2:18)
    • Call us into battle against sin (1 Cor. 10:14 & 11:31; 1 Thess. 5:22; 1 Peter 2:11)
    • Arm us against sin (Psalm 1:1-2; Ephesians 6:10-17; 2 Timothy 3:16)
    • Take away our excuses (1 Corinthians 10:13)
    • Remind us of our true loyalty (Ecclesiastes 8:4; John 14:15; Romans 13:14)
    • Help deal with our sin (Proverbs 24:16; James 5:16; Hebrews 4:15-16)
  • An Observation about Psalm 119:11: “Here we are informed that we are well fortified against the stratagems of Satan when God’s law is deeply seated in our hearts. For unless it have a fast and firm hold there, we will readily fall into sin. Among scholars, those whose knowledge is confined to books, if they have not the book always before them, readily discover their ignorance; in like manner, if we do not imbibe the doctrine of God, and are well acquainted with it, Satan will easily surprise and entangle us in his meshes. Our true safeguard, then, lies not in a slender knowledge of his law, or in a careless perusal of it, but in hiding it deeply in our hearts. Here we are reminded, that however men may be convinced of their own wisdom, they are yet destitute of all right judgment, except as far as they have God as their teacher.” (1)
  • Conclusion: Hebrews 4:12 and 12:4

1. Calvin, John. “Commentary on Psalms 119:11”. “Calvin’s Commentary on the Bible”. .


My Faith, My Love, My Focus: Psalm 119:1-8

March 13, 2016

My Faith, My Love, My Focus: Psalm 119:1-8 (Aleph)

  • Focusing in the fog: aphoraō [G872] Hebrews 12:2
    • Runners, field goal kickers, and other examples from life.
    • Isaiah 45:22
    • Zachariah 12:10
  • Psalm 19 and Psalm 119: Proclamation, Prayer and Poetry
    (Forcefulness, Flow and Facticity)

    • Exploring the Divine/Human Relationship in
      Proclamation, Prayer and Poetry
    • Accepting and embracing paradox and enigma
    • Putting ourselves in David’s sandals
  • Reading Psalm 119:1-8: Each line matches the effect with the cause … including verse 8.
  • The phenemenon of properly experienced shame:
    • Adam and Eve: The change from Genesis 2:25 to Genesis
    • Shame from lack of knowledge of God’s Word: 1
      Corinthians 15:34
    • Shame from substituting human wisdom for God’s Word: 1
      Corinthians 6:5
  • Compare: Untrustworthy emotions connected with misplaced

    • Misplaced shame from things out of our control (e.g.,
      actions of others, accusations of others).
    • Misplaced shame about sin that has been confessed and
      forgiven (Luke 7:48-50).
  • Compare: Genesis 3:21.
  • Compare: No one who believes in the Lord will be put to shame (Romans 10:11; 9:33).
  • Psalm 119:8: How do we stay focused God’s Word?
  • John Owen: ” A constant view of the glory of Christ will
    fix the soul unto that object which is suited to give it
    delight, complacency, and satisfaction.”

    • The majority of our spiritual decay and barrenness
      arises from an inordinate admission of other things into our
      minds for these things weaken grace in all its operations.
    • Where we are engaged in this duty, it will stir up
      every grace unto its due exercise; which is that wherein the
      spiritual revival inquired after does consist.
    • This will assuredly put us on a vigilant watch and
      constant conflict against all the deceitful workings of sin
      (Hebrews 3:13), against every entrance of temptation
      (Matthew 26:41), against all the ways and means of the state
      of being surprised by foolish frames, by vain imaginations
      which are the cause of our decay.” (1)
  • Psalm 119:8 – David’s closing prayer.


Obedience: Already / Not Yet / Already+Not-Yet

March 8, 2016

The Expedience of Obedience: Some New Testament Insights

  • In response / repentance
    • Romans 5:1: Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
    • Romans 6:17-18: But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.
    • Romans 8:13: For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
    • Ephesians 5:8, 11: for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light … Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.
    • 1 Corinthians 6:20: for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
    • 2 Corinthians 7:1: Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body[a] and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.
    • Colossians 3:17: And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
  • In faith
    • John 10:27-29: My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.
    • Ephesians 2:10: For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
    • 1 Corinthians 15:14-18: And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
    • 2 Corinthians 5:17: Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
    • 1 John 2:3-4: And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him,
  • In hope
    • Matthew 5:8: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”
    • Matthew 6:19-21: “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust[a] destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
    • Mark 10:29-30: Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.
    • Ephesians 6:8: knowing that whatever good anyone does, this he will receive back from the Lord, whether he is a bondservant or is free.
    • 1 Corinthians 3:14: If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward.
    • 1 Peter 3:9: Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.
  • In love
    • John 14:15-17: “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.
    • John 14:23-24: Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father’s who sent me.
    • John 15:7-10: If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.
    • 2 John 6: And this is love, that we walk according to his commandments; this is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, so that you should walk in it.
  • In victory
    • 2 Corinthians 3:17: Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
    • Galatians 5: 1, 13: For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery… For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.
    • Galatians 5:16-22: But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
    • James 1:22-25: But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.
    • 1 John 5:2-6: By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
  • In worship
    • Romans 12:1: I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.
    • Philippians 1:27: Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel,
    • 1 Peter 2:5: you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
  • To the glory of the Father
    • Matthew 5:16: In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
    • 1 Peter 2:12: Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.

I Want to WANT to Obey Your Decrees

March 8, 2016

An Introduction to Psalm 119

  • Question: What is “obedience” for a follower of Christ?
  • How is obedience different than:
    • The plan of salvation
    • Repentance
    • Good works
    • Worship
  • What are the “Motivations” for obedience?
    • Why does God desire our obedience?
    • Why do we desire obedience?
    • What difference does obedience make for a follower of Christ?
    • What does the Bible have to say about obedience on the part of followers of Christ?
  • Why do followers of Christ struggle with obedience?
    • When we struggle with obedience, what should we do about it?
    • What should be our prayer, when we are praying about our disobedience?
    • How do we sometimes pray about disobedience in ways that are less than honest?
  • What should we expect of ourselves in regard to obedience?
    • How should those expectations inform our prayers?
  • A quick reading of Psalm 119:1-8 (Aleph)
    • If we are all sinners, how does it make sense to talk about those whose way is blameless?
    • If we are all sinners, how does it make sense to say, “I will keep your statutes”?

Will the Cray Computer Become a Believer?

January 25, 2016

“Titan,” the supercomputer at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oakville, Tennessee, and built by computer manufacturer Cray, is tasked with solving such mysteries as the meaning of life. I’m wondering if the programmers permitted Titan to consider whether God is a “necessary being,” as Anselm and Aquinas (and many philosophers and theologians since their time) have asserted. After all, if God exists, absolutely everything (!) is different than if He did not exist. If God, understood as the ultimate personality  and Creator with such attributes as omniscience and omnipresence, exists, then any ideas about meaning or purpose in life would necessarily be formed in His shadow and would need to take Him into account. So much so, any “meaning” or “purpose” this side of living for His glory would not really make sense.  Or as the Westminster Shorter Catechism puts it, our primary purpose in life is to “love God and enjoy Him forever.” An interesting twist on this notion might even emerge from H. Vonzell Castilla’s recent book, Make God Look Good. It will be interesting to see how close the Titan gets to this reality. Frankly, I’m not expecting much from the machine.

Seeking the Whole Truth: The Problem of Reductionism in Secularized Human Science

September 28, 2015

Reductionism MedDentalAssns



Seeking the Whole Truth: The Problem of Reductionism in Secularized Human Science

Handout for Presentation on 9/28/2015
Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine
Christian Medical & Dental Associations
    • Theme: Opening up our InquisitivenessInquisitiveness
    • What’s Out There?What's out there


    • Does Human Science Leave Room for God?Room for God


    • Conclusion: Opening up our InquisitivenessReductionism Christian med-dental assns 2015