Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Welcome to Tuesday's Together (in the Word). We are reading our Bibles daily this year, following a plan available at DeeDee's blog, I Have No Greater Joy... As DeeDee said, our intention is to be accountable to read the Word together this year.

This week I read:

Psalm 1-2, Luke 1-4, and Proverbs 1. Certainly all of it spoke to me. I love God's written Word. I'm so grateful for the privelege of having it in my home, the freedom to read it without fear of persecution, and as I purposed in September, 2007, I intend to use it! I love to read, and there came a time last year when I realized that as much as I loved to read, I wasn't reading God's Word enough. I picked up my Bible and read through it more than once. I was truly thirsty for His Word, and it filled my cup to overflowing.
It can do the same for you. You don't have to read it through 3 times one year, but by reading at least some every day you can hide His Word in your heart! You'll grow much closer to Him than you ever imagined you could be.
Have you ever had one of your children or grandchildren run to you and say, "Will you read this to me?" That's how I felt about it when I first began to really read the Bible. If you look at it as a whole, it can be sort of overwhelming. I thought the OT was going to be boring in parts and I'd get bogged down in the begats and begots. I needed help!
I took it to the Lord and said, "Will You read this to me?" I was amazed. The begats and begots were important. I recognized names when I would read them later. The sacrifices and laws were even important, because they were for a reason. And they showed up in different parts and helped me understand certain situations that arose and stances that people took because of them.

This week, I loved reading this about how John would prepare the way before Christ. I loved the tender words of his earthly father Zechariah as seen above.

"to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins,..."

John was the forerunner. He was the one who would make way for the actual Giver of salvation through the forgiveness of our sins. He wasn't the one who would forgive sins himself, but he was the one who prepared the hearts of those would see Christ. Oh, the privelege!

What spoke to me was the actual reason why God forgives our sins given here.

"because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven"

The Greek word for mercy is eleos, which means:

1) mercy: kindness or good will towards the miserable and the afflicted, joined with a desire to help them
a) of men towards men: to exercise the virtue of mercy, show one's self merciful
b) of God towards men: in general providence; the mercy and clemency of God in providing and offering to men salvation by Christ
c) the mercy of Christ, whereby at his return to judgment he will bless true Christians with eternal life

How great is God's love and mercy for us?

"to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace."

Oh, how He longs to shine on us, bringing us out of darkness!

The Greek word for shine is epiphainō, which means:

1) to show to or upon
a) to bring to light
2) to appear, become visible
a) of stars
3) to become clearly known, to show one's self

God tells us often through His Word that He wants to be known. He reveals Himself in so many ways! He shines on us, bringing to light His loving mercy and drawing us out of darkness to become visible as His children.

He puts our feet on paths of peace. One of the most peaceful things I can do is read the Word of God.

The Greek word for peace is eirēnē, which means:

1) a state of national tranquillity
a) exemption from the rage and havoc of war
2) peace between individuals, i.e. harmony, concord
3) security, safety, prosperity, felicity, (because peace and harmony make and keep things safe and prosperous)
4) of the Messiah's peace
a) the way that leads to peace (salvation)
5) of Christianity, the tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and content with its earthly lot, of whatsoever sort that is
6) the blessed state of devout and upright men after death

I love the third definition! Peace and harmony make and keep things prosperous. Who would choose to sit in darkness when God's Light could shine upon us and move us onto the pathway of peace knowing that? I can't imagine!

I just thought this was such a sweet passage. I hope you'll join us in reading your Bible daily. Be sure and visit DeeDee for more information and to read her post as well as others who are participating.

Blessings & Hugs,


Tricia said...

Hey Laurie Ann!
A great post, and I just wanted to share with you what jumped off the page at me... it was that you asked God to "Read this book to me". I have never thought about it like that before but it sounds wonderful! I am going to incorporate that request into my times spent in the Word, I can't wait for the Father to read His Book to me!

Thanks so much and thanks for joining us!


Peggy said...

Blessings Laurie Ann & a Blessed & happy New Year! AMAZING!!! as usual...great teacher from the GREATEST TEACHER & TEXTbook...the BIBLE!!! I really love how you introduced our Reading of His Word or actually how sweetly you put it,
"Will You read to me, Lord?"

I've enjoyed reading what everyone is sharing from their Reading Plan & Memorization for 2009! I have looked over this plan & I like it.
Since I was without internet, I started my own...and it was from 2007...then I was hoping for the new one of 2009 and I noticed ABS
has one on "Shining the Light". This idea seems to be what you have shared from LUKE!

I pray that this accountability shared with one another will shine more of Jesus on those living in darkness by the change they see in us as we live God's Word & allow Him to guide our path! Such WISDOM you have shared that the Holy Spirit has spoken to your heart & you have such a gift in sharing & personalizing it! Just as John the Baptist prepared the way for Christ, His Spirit is PREPARING us through seek Him & reading His Word! May God BE your LIGHT! Thank you for sharing in Tuesday's Together...I will learn a great deal by sitting at His feet with each of you...DeeDee, Tricia, Sharon & you & it looks like many others last week also...Good Plan!

Debra said...

Laurie Ann..

The definition that speaks so much to me is the one of the stars...because of the multitude...there are so many you can never count them...and that is how much of God's mercy we have..it can't me measured. Thank you, Jesus!

Love ya girlie. Great post!

He And Me + 3 said...

Laurie Ann, I am so glad that He chose to bring me out of the darkness and into His light. What an awesome feeling to know the Light of the world.

DeeDee said...

Great Post Laurie Ann....
I am like Tricia - I love the way you gave us the picture of asking "Will you read this to me?" That is so precious!
Sweet Blessings,

Amydeanne said...

I appreciate your greek translation here! that sure adds to it!

JesusRulzMe said...

Precious sister Laurie Ann,

You bless me sister! Truly, God uses you to help me to "savor" the richness of His word as I witness you savor it as well! ♥

Like you, I'm a Bible addict...yep, can't get enough of Jesus and I have to keep going back over and over again as He causes me to hunger and thirst for Him more and more! It's amazing, the more I read, the more I know about God, the more I realize how very little I know. Oh how vast our God is!

You're a blessing to me and I love you so much!


Lady of Value said...

Laurie Ann, thanks for stopping by my post and commenting. I too love the way you asked the Lord to read to you, how wonderful!


Kelly Ellison said...

I enjoyed your post. Thank you for the reminder that we should be grateful for the privelege of having the Bible in our home and the freedom to read it without fear of persecution. How often I take the privilege for granted even though there are those around the world that don't have our freedom.
Blessings to you!

Kelly @ The Beauty of Sufficient Grace said...

This is my first time visiting your blog...and what a lovely visit it was!
"Oh, how He longs to shine on us, bringing us out of darkness!"

Love it!

And love this, "He puts our feet on paths of peace. One of the most peaceful things I can do is read the Word of God."

How very true...that He is our light shining in the darkness, leading us out of the darkness and into the light. And how He longs to put our feet on paths of peace...to fill us and comfort us with His hope and His peace...that comes from the truth in His word.

I really enjoyed this post and this visit. Thanks for sharing your heart.

In His Grace,
Kelly Gerken