The word meditation conjures up a variety of meanings and applications. When some hear this term, they immediately think of New Age or Eastern religious relaxation techniques centered on an effort to achieve a higher level of consciousness, peace, and oneness with the universe. Others think of simply thinking really hard about a subject. This begs the question as to what the biblical approach to meditation is all about and is God’s commands regarding meditating on Him and His Word (and there are many) are similar to the aforementioned efforts. David Saxton, in his excellent book God’s Battle Plan for the Mind, explores the Puritans writings on this subject which are a valuable wellspring of information on biblical meditation.
I am a huge fan of the Puritans. Their writings are something I have become to appreciate more and more, especially when it comes to subjects such as what God expects of us when it comes to being passionate about His Word. The Puritans wrote widely on this matter and Saxton captures their thoughts in His book in an accessible and helpful way. Given the Puritans are at times a more difficult read than more modern authors, having a book that brings their arguably old-fashioned language to the present age is quite welcome and needed.
As Saxton saliently notes in the outset of this book, “We must wholeheartedly integrate doctrine with living. This necessary wedding of doctrine and practice destroys superficial Christianity, but it only comes through a careful and serious consideration of God’s Word.” Such an approach was a hallmark of the writings of the Puritans. This is reflected throughout this book. Not only does Saxton outline what biblical meditation is all about, he also spends needed time noting what biblical mediation is not in a concerted effort to compare and contrast truth from error.
I truly appreciated that Saxton takes the time to properly define the term meditate as it is reflected in Scripture as that is the foundation for truth. It is irrelevant how anyone, including the Puritans define such a term if it is not in alignment with God’s perspective. Thankfully, the writings and approach of the Puritans is biblically grounded in how meditation is noted throughout Scripture. It was very interesting and helpful to read through the definitions of meditation provided by many of the Puritan authors. You can sense the passion they had for this subject just from their effort to define the term.
Throughout this book, Saxton provides the reader with valuable methods by which to practice biblical meditation. He does more than give a bunch of really great quotes from the Puritans as anyone can simply Google such things. What Saxton does is to give the reader the background of the subject and most importantly practical application on how to implement this in their daily regime of Bible study. His approach is truly reminiscent of the Puritan method of stating the doctrine and then heading straight to giving the reader the how to manual.
This is a book I would recommend to all believers as meditation is a practice we must all employ as we study God’s Word. Replete with salient insight from men of God who wrote heavily on this subject, this book will serve the reader well as a valuable handbook on the how and what of biblical meditation. In an age when the counterfeit has become so popular, having a sound reminder of the truth is sorely needed and Saxton hits the mark in that regard, namely bringing us back to sound biblical doctrine in the area of meditation and why it is so valuable for the Christian and their walk with God.
This book is available for purchase from Reformation Heritage Books by clicking here.
I received this book for free from Reformation Heritage Books for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”