Michael Boling – Daily Washing Yourself in the Word

I am nearing completion of two and a half months of daily Bible reading. A commitment I made for 2017 was to read through the Bible chronologically. Each year, I seem to get off to a great start only to get bogged down at some point in the year, often resulting in my daily Bible plan taking an unfortunate hiatus.

As I have made my journey through Genesis, Job, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and currently part of Deuteronomy, I have been confronted with some concepts and principles I know I have clearly overlooked over the years. For those who wondered why Job was included between Genesis and Exodus, remember I am reading through Scripture chronologically. Some may ask themselves why the need to read Scripture on a consistent basis. After all, hasn’t everything been discovered already in Scripture? Can’t we just listen to a sermon series and not have to be bothered with Scripture reading? After all, that is so time consuming, right? So let me address why it is imperative for the people of God to wash themselves daily in Scripture, even if you have read through it once or a hundred times.

It is commanded of us in Scripture for starters and more importantly, if you are at all interested in growing in your relationship with God and understanding what it means to love God and to love others, it is an absolute requirement that you read God’s Word and hide it in your heart. While reading through the Bible chronologically and writing about what you have read each day may not be something you want to start off with, I exhort you to implement a regimented Bible reading plan. Even if that means you spend 5 minutes reading a Psalm as a place to start, by all means do something. We cannot claim to be a people who love God while at the same time ignoring His Word and His commands to us. That would be akin for those who are married to declaring to everyone you meet that you are married but in practice, you are ignoring your marriage vows.

Get yourself a good study Bible, concordance, and some paper and get to it. Wash yourselves daily in the Word of God. If you do, God has promised that His Word will penetrate to every nook and cranny of your life with the Holy Spirit scrubbing off the filth of the old man. Just as you cannot take a shower once a year or once a month and honestly claim to be physically clean, in the same manner you cannot wash yourself once a year or once a month in God’s Word and claim to be moving forward toward maturity in the faith to be through the power of the Holy Spirit a cleansed and spotless bride.

So get to washing yourself in God’s Word. Allow His word to permeate every fiber of your being. Walk in His ways in loving obedience in response to the grace He has bestowed upon us. Don’t just stick one finger or toe into the water. Stand under the waters of the Word so that all of you is impacted. Every single time I did into Scripture, the Holy Spirit reveals a new nugget of truth. So get into the habit of a consistent routine of reading Scripture. Trust me…you will not regret it!

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Michael Boling – It’s All in the Numbers

My goal this year is to read through the Bible chronologically. As with many, over the years the goal to read through Scripture often gets bogged down once the last half of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy appear on the reading schedule. Lots of information God provides on issues such as how He wanted sacrifices to be offered, details on the building of the tabernacle, and in Numbers….well, there is lots of counting going on.

It is quite easy to suddenly become a speed reader as your encounter these books. I admit it, I have tried to race through how many people belonged to the tribe of Dan and Naphtali and where God wanted all the tribes to position themselves once they made camp. After all, is that really salvation issue related material?

I am a firm believer that everything in Scripture is included for a reason. Nothing is unimportant. Our study of how many fighting men were counted for the tribe of Reuben will not impact our eternal standing with the Father. With that said, if we avoid the books and passages of Scripture we might feel as boring or unimportant, we are going to miss the details that form the greater message of what YHVH is showing us in His word.

If we take the nothing is unimportant approach to a book such as Numbers, we can note that God is involved in the details of His people. Numbers and counting represent specifics. We are often presented by some with the idea that YHVH created everything, set it into motion, and then kicked up His “heels” and let it ride, chips falling were they may. In Numbers, we find YHVH intimately involved in providing instructions on how He desires the tribes of Bnei-Yisrael (sons of Israel) to be positioned around the tabernacle.

The reason why He desired the counting to take place is an entirely different discussion and one worthy of study. At this point, I simply want to encourage you to read through all of Scripture. Do not avoid the familiar portions because you think you have read them a thousand times and there is nothing left to glean. Furthermore, do not avoid the more difficult or so-called unimportant sections, thinking you they are the realm of the “theologian/scholar” or they are not relevant.

Constantly remind yourself of the truth of 2 Timothy 3:16-17:

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is valuable for teaching the truth, convicting of sin, correcting faults and training in right living; 17 thus anyone who belongs to God may be fully equipped for every good work.”

Yes that includes the book of Numbers so if you are currently starting that book as part of your yearly reading plan, avoid the temptation to speed read. Slow down, read what the Father has provided us, and meditate on every word. You will not regret reading, studying, and meditating on the fact there were 53,400 counted from the tribe of Naphtali.

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