“Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.” Joshua 1:8
Most people I know want to succeed in life. We work hard at succeeding and then we also sacrifice to give our children all the opportunities we can for them one day to succeed. This is such an overriding issue that we are constantly looking for help on how to succeed.
Joshua 1:8 provides the answer on how to succeed. That verse tells us that we are to take seriously the spiritual discipline of Bible study and application. Joshua instructs us to study God’s Word continually, meditate on it constantly, and obey completely what it tells us to do. Only then, Joshua says will we prosper and succeed in all we do.
What does this really look like in our daily lives? We must be committed to doing three things:
1. Hearing God’s Word: “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.” Romans 10:17
Most Christians should be able to discipline themselves to attend church regularly and to listen to messages via radio or media. Are you committed to being in church so that you can hear God’s word regularly from God’s man?
2. Reading God’s Word: “But He answered and said, "It is written, Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” Matt 4:4
Studies show that less than 15% of Christians read their Bible daily. Worse yet, a large majority of Christians only open their Bibles at church or very minimally during the week.
3. Studying and Obeying God’s Word: “For Ezra had set his heart to study the law of the Lord, and to practice it, and to teach His statutes and ordinances in Israel.” Ezra 7:10
Ezra purposed in his heart to study God’s Word, to obey it, and to teach it. He made up his mind and he disciplined himself to make Bible study and application the priority of his life. Ezra did not waffle on the issue of being in the Word of God. He knew the value of doing it and committed his life to it. What about us? Is it not time that we set our hearts towards God’s Word and not allowing it to be anything other than our top priority?
From Joshua 1:8, we know that establishing this discipline will change our lives. We will see success in what we do. It will not be success as the world defines it but it will be success as God defines it. That is the only kind of success that guarantees to bring us peace, joy, contentment, love, and so much more. That kind of success will help us to lead our kids to a faith that will bless them in this life and guarantee their eternal destiny. Who does not want that kind of success?
What’s keeping you from setting your heart to study, obey, and teach God’s Word? I pray we will all see the value of prioritizing the spiritual discipline of Bible study and application in our lives!