Psalm 119:105 "Old-School Roadmap" (Sword of the Spirit - Week 1)

Psalm 119:105 "Old-School Roadmap" (Sword of the Spirit - Week 1)

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. (ESV)

Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path. (NIV)

Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path. (NLT)


Theme Intro:

As this series closes, we focus on the foundation behind the Bible Memory Project: God’s written Word! Together, we’ll memorize verses that help us fall further in love with scripture. The direction it contains, the power it holds, how it stands the test of time, and the inspiration it gives. The Word of God stands forever, is sharper than any two-edged sword, a light to our path, and teaches us wisdom and a heart of worship. We must take up the Sword of the Spirit to fight back the darkness surrounding us. 

 

Dive Deeper:

MapQuest

I have sweet memories of road trips from my childhood. Many of these adventures were to the rocky mountains in “Colorful Colorado.” The night before our trips, I remember how my father would log on to MapQuest, print out road maps, and organize them in preparation for the journey. Whenever we weren’t on a straightaway highway or Interstate 76 through Nebraska, my Mom would pull out the printouts and help guide the way. On my father's part, it took preparation and research to know the route we needed to take to arrive at our desired destination. He would even tell us of his childhood (the time well before MapQuest) when my grandfather would take out the atlas and a highlighter to map out the way. Now, as my wife and I are preparing for our first road trip with our son, also to Colorado, I will have one measly responsibility in navigation preparation—making sure my iPhone is plugged in and charged up. 

I figure for you, just like me, it’s easy to forget that there was a day when directions and navigation took hours of preparation and that it took centuries even to create our maps. Over the generations, our navigation has grown easier and easier. When it comes to faith, I wonder if we have the same mindset. We have great podcasts, millions of YouTube sermons, commentaries galore, and information at our fingertips. So, have we just thrown on cruise control and Google Maps? Not sure where we actually are? Let’s quickly touch on two essential truths today. First, we must remember that God’s Word is our true light and, secondly, that through Jesus, it has been illuminated even brighter!

A Lamp to Our Feet

There’s a sermon from John Piper where he talks about God’s Word as a love letter to us. Correctly, he explains how we would never want someone else to read a love letter from our significant other to simply give us a summary. Piper argues that we often do this with God’s Word when we forsake reading it ourselves and let others interpret it for us. His Living Word is a much brighter lamp and guide than any interpretation of it. The resources at our fingertips are incredible and often vitally important, but they shouldn’t replace the time we spend meditating and knowing the Scriptures. Time in the Word will light our path and give us wisdom to truly know the path we’re on. His Word is our true and ultimate guide.

The second point is this: New technologies today make navigation easier and more attainable. The coming of Jesus made the path shine even brighter and the path forward available to all people. 2 Peter 1:19 says, “And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.” Through Jesus, we know that the directions given through scripture stand true forever as they are unfading. He spent His life on earth, ensuring to pave the way for what a life of true surrender and discipleship looks like. His life and Word is our roadmap. In the darkness of the world, we have hope and truth to cling to along the way, and until the day when the morning star rises—and we are ushered into eternity and eternal light—let’s cling to the lamp at our side, which is the Word of God illuminating our path.

Written by Blake Stanley 


Challenge:

Return to the old stuff. If you’re like me, you probably haven’t touched an old map for quite some time. Although new technologies make this easier, returning to the original maps will give you a more illuminated, mindful road trip. So maybe actually try it out, grab an old map, and try to find your way to the Rockies. But my deeper challenge to you is this: Since we now have the New Testament, it’s easy to remain in it rather than return to the Old. But through Jesus, we are told that the Old Testament has been even more illuminated to this generation, so take some time in the coming weeks to read places in the Old Testament you haven’t for a long time or maybe ever, and seek the light that comes from it!

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