Perfect Teachings

Nothing is completely perfect, except your teachings.
97 I deeply love your Law! I think about it all day.
98 Your laws never leave my mind,
and they make me much wiser than my enemies.
99 Thinking about your teachings gives me better understanding than my teachers,
100 and obeying your laws makes me wiser than those who have lived a long time.
101 I obey your word instead of following a way that leads to trouble.
102 You have been my teacher, and I won’t reject your instructions.
103 Your teachings are sweeter than honey.
104 They give me understanding and make me hate all lies.

105 Your word is a lamp that gives light wherever I walk.      Psalm 119:96-105 (CEV)

“Nothing is perfect except what You teach me, LORD!” Do I believe this statement? If I do believe it, then spending time every day listening and reading with the LORD would be my #1 priority, right?

God’s Word isn’t just a book of rules and commands. It is a living role model as it tells me about those who have gone before me and relates Jesus’ words and Paul and Peter’s letters. It is living because it teaches me something new every time I read it. What I learned in 1995 when I first committed my life is not the same lesson I hear when I read the same passage almost 20 years later. Those words do not go out of style or become irrelevant to my life now.

The psalmist describes God’s word as sweet like honey. I hear that as nourishing and good for me. I crave that sweetness in my life. I also need some vegetables to balance that sweetness and so God’s Word may need some “chewing” to meditate and consider a passage for a time until His Spirit speaks to mine and reveals His teaching that God wanted me to learn.

Just as iron sharpens iron, friends sharpen the minds of each other. Proverbs 27:17 (CEV)

As I study and listen to the LORD teach me, I also know that I need others in Christ’s Body to encourage and challenge me. Some of the best books that I have used in studying the Bible are ones that I disagree with. They make me consider why I believe what I do that is different from the author. And so I also like to study with people who do not always agree with me about Scripture because they make me think.

I am so glad to have scholars like my husband who can read Greek and Hebrew as easily as I read English. But Henry would be the first to say that having this skill does not make him superior in God’s eyes. And he would also tell you that the best Bible translation (KJV, NIV, CEV, etc) for each of us is the one that we actually read.

So many of us make resolutions as a new year begins and within 30 days, we drop the resolution and go back to doing what we did the previous year – and yet expect a better outcome. It seems to me that spending just 10 minutes more per day with God, listening and reading His wisdom is a good plan. He is our best teacher. He is our Savior. He is our Father. He is our Comforter. Let us get quiet, open our Bibles and listen to God’s perfect teachings that are just for us to light our path.

Thy Word is a Lamp written & sung by Amy Grant & Michael W. Smith

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