A Word on Meditation

As I was writing my last post on a weekly scripture meditation, it occurred to me that I need to define what meditation means from a biblical perspective.

When I speak of meditating on scripture I AM NOT advocating any form of contemplative spirituality now so popular in many of our churches. This form of meditation calls for emptying the mind of all thought and entering an altered state of consciousness. There are many other aspects to it of course, but it has its origins in paganism, eastern religions and Roman Catholicism.

Apprising Ministries by Pastor Ken Silva is an excellent resource for sharpening your discernment about this spiritually devastating practice. Keep your eyes open, contemplative spirituality may be coming to a church near you!

Sigh! It disturbs me that every time I want to discuss a biblical concept it seems I first need to recover the original definition of the term from the clutches of heretics before proceeding!


When I speak of meditating on the word, I mean it in the way the Psalmist prescribed it when he wrote:

Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
(Psa 1:1-3)

Meditate is the Hebrew word ‘Hagah’ and its meaning here primarily is ‘to ponder’. In other words think upon these things which were written for doctrine, reproof, and instruction in righteousness. Meditate does not mean to empty your mind of all thought and wait for subjective emotional experiences. We are never commanded in the scriptures to pursue such disciplines.

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Scripture Meditation: Man’s Desperate Condition

WARNING! Swallow your pride before engaging these verses, for they speak to all of us without exception. You may believe this is not a very encouraging passage to think upon, but it relays an essential doctrinal truth. These scriptures are foundational to the teachings I am preparing to post concerning issues like free will and man’s ability and willingness to embrace the gospel message.

as it is written: “There is none righteous, no not one; there is none that understands, there is none that seeks after God.” “They are all gone out of the way, they have together become unprofitable, there is none that does good, no, not one.” “Their throat is an open grave, with their tongues they have used deceit, the poison of asps is under their lips; whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness;” “their feet are swift to shed blood; destruction and misery are in their way, and the way of peace they did not know.” “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
(Rom 3:10-18)

Meditate on these verses throughout the day and ask yourselves the following questions:

  1. If no one understands spiritual matters or seeks after God, how can we be saved?
  2. If all man has become unprofitable (worthless) is there anything he can do of himself to become profitable (worthy)?
  3. Can you possibly believe that man is basically good with a few inherent flaws that cause him to make some ‘mistakes’ in life after reading this text?
  4. Do you agree with Paul’s assessment that man is corrupt in every part of his being; including the mind, will, emotions and spirit?
  5. Knowing the sorry state of man’s nature, how important do you think the ministry of the Holy Spirit is in leading us to Christ in repentance and faith?