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TOPIC: EXCEL IN KNOWING THE WORD

Text: Psalm 119: 9-16

Aim: To lead the women to develop love for the word of God and meditate upon it day and night.

Memory verse: Joshua 1:8 “Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you will be prosperous and successful”. (NIV)

Introduction: A man by name Woodrow Wilson (1856 to 1924) once said, “I am sorry for men who do not read the Bible every day. I wonder why they deprive themselves of the strength and the pleasure.” This statement aptly states the importance of the word of God to any Christian. The word of God is a lamp to a Christian’s feet and a light to his/her path (Psalm 119: 105). “It is the travelers map, the pilgrim’s staff (strong stick for support), the pilot’s compass (instrument that points a direction), the soldier’s sword, and the Christian’s charter”.
It is useful for teaching, correcting, rebuking and training in righteousness, so that a man of God will be thoroughly equipped for all good works (2 Tim. 3:16-17) Any Christian who plays with the word of God does great harm to self. Any person who wants to maintain a right relationship with God and to experience the blessings of God must excel in the word of God. In this lesson we will focus on how anyone can excel in the word of God.

1.  Listening to God’s word daily (Deuteronomy 6: 6-9)
 The first way to excel in the word of God is to listen to it being read, preached or taught daily (during our family devotions and other opportunities).  God commanded the Israelites to pay keen attention to the word of God. They were to commit themselves wholeheartedly to the Word of God. They were to repeat these words to their children at home and even when they were out of the home. They were to write them on the door posts of their houses and on their gates. This was to ensure that the people kept in touch with the word of God on daily basis. Those who are able to read should deliberately plan to read God’s word daily. A daily dose of God’s word will harm no one, but bring a lot of blessings. Those who have been doing this can testify how much they are blessed from this.

2. Studying God’s word daily. (2 Timothy 2:15)
Besides listening and reading God’s word, we should study it daily (during family devotions, Sunday school, and Bible study classes). The Bible calls upon us to study to show ourselves approved unto God as people who need not be ashamed, but rightly dividing the word of truth. To study is much deeper than reading the word. It is taking time to read through the passage(s) chosen and asking questions such as who is talking, what is he saying? To whom is he talking? Where are they? Why is he/she saying it? Study would involve the use of study aids such as Study Bibles, Bible Commentaries etc. In Bible study, we need to make a difference between what is being said, what it means and how it applies to the reader or any other person(s) around. (A knowledge of how to do an inductive Bible study would be a big help to you).

3. Memorizing the word of God (Psalm 119: 11, 13).
We need to memorize God’s word daily. To memorize means to hide God’s word in your heart or to commit it to memory in order to be able to recite it. The Psalmist says, “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you”… “I have recited aloud all the regulations you have given us” (NLT). Some of us try to excuse ourselves that we cannot memorize. That is not very true. How many of us have forgotten our names or the names of our children or parents? How many times have you had to consult a book to remember any of these? The truth is that we are not committed to memorizing the word of God. An average person can memorize 52 Bible verses in a year (i.e. one verse per week). Try it from today and you will be surprised.

4. Meditating on God’s word daily (Psalm 119: 15)
We need to meditate upon God’s word daily. To meditate means to think and reflect over what you have heard, read, studied or memorized. It is to think how the Word of God relates to the different situations of your life. E.g. how does it relate to your position as housewife, mother, teacher etc? The Psalmist says “I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways” (ESV). We need to meditate on God’s word as we sit at home or as we carry on our farm work or any other activity. God’s word relates to everything you do in life so that there should be no moment when you think that I cannot reflect on God’s word in this situation.

5. Applying God’s word to daily life (James 1: 22-25).
To apply God’s word to life means to do what it says or to put it in practice. James tells us not only to listen to the word and deceive ourselves, but to do what it says. The blessings do not come from merely listening to the word, but from listening and doing what it says. Therefore, as you listen to, read, study, memorize and meditate on God’s word, the final thing should be to obey what it says. 1 Sam. 15: 22 tells us that “Obedience is better than sacrifice” (NLT). Do not be like a person who looks at self in the mirror and refuses to do what the mirror shows him/her to do. Only an unwise person can do that.

Conclusion
We often sing that “the Word of God is sweet in my heart….” The Word of God is truly sweet in the heart of anyone who excels in it. In fact, it is sweeter than honey. You are therefore challenged to from today commit yourself to excel in the Word. You do not need to be literate in order to excel in the Word. All you need is self- discipline. Some of the best memory verse queens in our Women’s Union are not literate. 

Questions:
1.    State five ways by which we can excel in the Word of God?
2.    How can a person who does not read and write excel in the Word of God?


Song: Thy Word I have hidden in my heart that I may not sin against thee.