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PART 1: Meditation as a COMMAND: It is our obligation.

Joshua 1:8: "Meditate on it day and night..."; [In other words, "Do it"... and you will be blessed!]

  1. A few comments about this passage:
  2. **See the separate study: Joshua 1:8 - the Command to Meditate on God's Word.**

Of course, thinking about God's Word is not only a command; it is also the Christian's desire! [See the next section.]

PART 2: Meditation as a DESIRE:

Psalm 19:14 - "May ... the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight..."

  1. Theme: The psalmist's desire is that his heart's meditation be pleasing to God. Psalm 19 is the meditation, so think about what it says!

  2. His focus: on God (as reflected in creation) and on God's Word.

  3. He wants not only his thoughts, but also his words to be pleasing to God. [One's thoughts and one's words are related. See Proverbs 16:23; Matthew 12:34; Matthew 15:18; Luke 6:45; and Romans 10:8-10.]

  4. What did the psalmist think about when he saw the glory of creation? What did he think about when he turned his focus to God's Word? What did he think about when he turned his focus to himself?

Psalm 104:34 [incl. vs. 33-35a] - "May my meditation be pleasing to him..."

  1. The psalmist's desire is that his meditation be pleasing to God. Psalm 104 is the meditation, so think about what it says!

  2. In this passage, meditation is associated with rejoicing. (Here, it is expressed in song.)

  3. In this context, the one who meditates and rejoices is contrasted with sinners, who perish. Why? Does this seem strange to you? If it does, keep an eye open for other instances (in other passages) in which the one who meditates is contrasted with sinners or wicked people. After studying them, you might have a better understanding of the reason for this contrast.

  4. Theme: God's great majesty, as seen in creation. This topic occurs frequently in the Old Testament, especially in the Psalms and in Job. How is God's majesty seen in creation? How does it reveal (or reflect) his glory? How should creation teach us about God? [If you are unfamiliar with this concept, it may be better to not answer the question until later. In that case, just observe how the writers of Scripture view things.]


  1. Our desires tell us a lot about ourselves. What are your desires? In what ways does God have a place in them... or does he?

  2. These two passages illustrate the types of things that reminded the psalmists about God and about his wisdom and power. What types of things remind you about God? Why? Are there other things that don't remind you about something related to God? Explain.

  3. If you don't look at creation the same way the psalmists (and others in the Bible) do, perhaps you should explore this matter deeper. Remember that, according to these psalms, God doesn't have to do something "supernatural" in order to be in control. He can use the natural laws he created to accomplish his purposes! Everything that exists is a reflection of his power and wisdom and glory. [Examples - Psalm 139; Romans 1:20; and the book of Job (many places, especially 36:22 to the end).]

  4. [Optional]: If you want to explore what the Bible says about God's dominion and power over everything in creation, a list of selected verses (mostly Old Testament) is available. Be sure to read the note of explanation at the top of the list.

Dennis Hinks © 1996, 2004