Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Book: Reclaiming the Lost Art of Biblical Meditation

Still trying to clean up book reviews. Unfortunately, I let this one slip past me, as it was a great read. Robert J. Morgan spoke to a small pastor's group I was once in, and I was impressed by his compassion and desire to help people grow. He struck me as someone who wanted to help each person he knew grow in Christ, and that he never saw a large audience, rather every individual person in that audience. I got this book free for the review.

"Mediation" is a word that stirs up some trouble in Christian churches. Rightly so, as some forms of meditation are antithetical to Christian practice--one does not "empty the mind" so much as focus the mind on Jesus and His Word, for example. But the proverbial baby has gone out with the bathwater in this discussion. There are Biblical imperatives to meditate, but what does that mean?

Answering that question is Robert J. Morgan's Reclaiming the Lost Art of Biblical Meditation. In this work, Morgan takes us through the Biblical material that provides instruction on meditation and also discusses some of the erroneous ideas about meditation that have crept into some Christian materials.

Through the course of the work, Morgan's concern that we understand "Biblical Meditation" as a focus on the "Biblical" part of the term is evident. He bases the idea in Psalm 46:10, that we need at times to "be still" and deepen our understanding of what it means that He is God.

Overall, it's hard to find a fault with this book. It's compact and each chapter is an easy one-setting read, so that you can work through it in your morning devotional time in the span of just a couple of weeks. It's a good challenge. He illustrates the text throughout with historical vignettes as well as Biblical material.

One of the other good things in this work is the last chapter encouraging Scripture memory. While Morgan has an entirely separate work on that subject, his connection of meditation and memorization are valuable. Why? Because meditating involves recalling what is in your mind, and if your mind is filled with Scripture, then that's what will come out.

I highly recommend this for an individual or for a group study in your church.

(Free book from BookLook Bloggers for the review, but as a long-term Robert J. Morgan fan, I'd have bought it anyway.)

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