7/29/15: What Understanding Brings
I do not like being confused. If I am involved in something, I want to be able to understand everything that’s going on. This helps me give my all to the situation, organization, or project. When someone can explain, or when I can read and comprehend the instructions, I feel immensely better and much more confident about my participation. I guess you could say that I then own my connection. Understanding the inside scoop means I am truly a part and this brings me joy.
The people of God need to understand God’s word so they can own their connection as well. In the chapter 8 of the book of Nehemiah, we see how this works. Ezra the scribe brought the Book of the Law “before the assembly of men and women and all who could hear with understanding” Nehemiah 8:2 (NKJ). Upon hearing the word of God being read, the people’s first reaction was to answer “‘Amen, Amen!’ while lifting up their hands. And they bowed their heads and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground” (verse 6). The Levites then joined in and “read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading” (verse 8).
Upon understanding the word of God, the people’s resulting reaction was joy. And the result of that joy was strength. Yes, this is the context of the oft-quoted words, “for the joy of the Lord is your strength” (verse 10).
God does mean for us to understand Him, and we do that by understanding His word. Lots of people who have never read the Bible like to express their opinions about God, Jesus, and the stands taken by Christians, but unless we read and study the Bible, our joy is not full, our outlook is weak, and our opinions are moot. Read the Bible, and you’ll receive understanding, joy, and strength—such a deal.
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