8 This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success.
Contrary to the kind of meditation that is trending in the world, the meditation the Bible teaches the believer is not one where you sit around doing nothing. Today we hear of yoga, which requires you to empty yourself of all thought. This however is far from what the Bible teaches concerning meditation because God teaches the believer His precepts (Ps 119:14-16), which the believer is supposed to remember and apply responsibly in his/her interactions with the environment and its people (Mat5:13). Today people want to learn meditation from people who have forsaken all responsibility and have seemingly attained enlightenment by wandering aimlessly through the land and smoking weed.
6 I will remember my song in the night; I will meditate with my heart, And my spirit ponders:
7 Will the Lord reject forever? And will He never be favourable again?
8 Has His lovingkindness ceased forever? Has His promise come to an end forever?
9 Has God forgotten to be gracious, Or has He in anger withdrawn His compassion? Selah.
10 Then I said, “It is my grief, That the right hand of the Most High has changed.”
11 I shall remember the deeds of the LORD; Surely I will remember Your wonders of old.
12 I will meditate on all Your work And muse on Your deeds.
13 Your way, O God, is holy; What god is great like our God?
14 You are the God who works wonders; You have made known Your strength among the peoples.
15 You have by Your power redeemed Your people, The sons of Jacob and Joseph. Selah.
When I mull over what passes off as meditation in this day and age, I can’t seem to get my head around the Morning Laughter Yoga I often came across during my morning walk. Science says that a good laugh relieves stress and leaves your muscles relaxed for about 45 minutes but I don’t think this works when people force themselves to laugh. This is precisely my argument against the kind of unnatural breathing meditation requires today. The Bible often defines prayer as wrestling with God (Gen 32:24-30/Col 4:12), which is not to bring God to settle to our terms but it is war waged by our living spirit imputed in us through Christ (Jn 3:3,16) against our sinful nature in coming over to God’s terms and righteousness (Ps77:6-15). Such wrestling is real non-simulated meditation which requires you to given your 100% to God.
5 “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
Such manner of prayer gets your hearting racing with shortness of breath and as your eyes are on the verge of tears you come to terms with what is known as the “Perseverance of the Saints”. The righteous perseverance of these Saints is by the merit and to the credit of the Lord Jesus Christ because sainthood is God calling men/women in His Son Jesus (Rom1:17) to meditate by the might of His Holy Spirit, exercising the Moral Law in thought and deed unto God’s good pleasure.
3 For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh,
4 so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
5 For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.
6 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace,
7 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so,
8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
Just as a person going to work mentally prepares himself/herself to handle a few things that he/she anticipates beforehand, so also is meditation, which does not require you to empty your thoughts but instead introspect what you have been doing so far and make that change in your life which is for the better. Remember the Moral Law requires you to put God first and second love your neighbour as you love yourself. That is to say, your meditation on God’s precepts should help you plan, how you aim to please God through the day and through your life. If you are feeling uneasy through the day you need to think back through the day as to what triggered that uneasiness in you and deal with it according to the knowledge of God.
1 How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night.
Remember, true meditation is not about emptying yourself but about filling yourself with the Holy Spirit because in Christ is your zeal for God and life. The world hates responsibility, which is something you see in abortion, in people raising their own children without discipline, in educational institutions, workplaces and politics. People love taking credit but naturally from fallen Adam despise the responsibility they must have for their environment and their neighbour. It is for this reason the world meditates by emptying itself of all thought because they will do anything to flush out the guilt of their failed stewardship upon the earth (Gen1:28), which their self-serving nature has no capacity to every realize or admit. Responsibility may be righteously painstaking but for those whose lives are accountable to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit empowers these with zealousness to accomplish their task because Jesus is worth it (Rev5:10-12).
16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
Understand, the Bible equips and readies the person mediating on scripture for Godly responsibility towards his/her environment and neighbour because unlike the world, the believer does not live as though he/she is a law unto himself/herself but that his/her life is accountable to Jesus. When you understand God is sovereign and pray to Him in your trials, your breathing automatically follows a rhythm, which relaxes and comforts you because you are placing your trust God, which makes every other thing fall in its place.
12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
As I conclude this post, I am hoping you understand that the prerequisite to such meditation is the knowledge of scripture because as Hebrews 4:12 says, the word of God is alive and active, the Word is life breathed out to us by God (Mat4:4). So when we reflect/meditate on scripture, we are enlightened by the Holy Spirit concerning the precepts of God, which is for the holistic benefit of our wellbeing. So unlike the world which practices its sloth even in meditation by way of emptying themselves out, true meditation requires you to diligently study the word of God i.e. The Holy Bible, which you are required to know from cover to cover.