Understanding God’s Word – Thru His Word

Understanding God’s Word
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Proverbs 4:5, 7 New International Reader’s Version (NIRV) 5 Get wisdom, and get understanding. Don’t forget my words or turn away from them. 7 To start being wise you must first get wisdom. No matter what it costs, get understanding.

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Something to think about:
We get understanding, direction and guidance for our lives through the Scriptures and by the Holy Spirit. Psalms 119:104 “Through thy precepts I get understanding…” Psalms 119:130 (NSB) “The unfolding of your words gives light. It gives understanding to the simple.”
Key Points:
  1. We get encouragement and strength through God’s word; Psalm 119:28 (HCSB) I am weary from grief; strengthen me through Your word.
  2. Jesus said, God’s word is truth; John 17:17b “…your word is truth.” Whatever the Scriptures say will happen, they are true, believe God’s word.
  3. To understand is to know; to understand God’s word, is to know God. You need to know your heavenly Father.

If you have more time please continue, if you don’t have time for more, please jump to the end to give feedback in the comment area/poll. Go to end.

Understanding God’s Word
Introduction
picture for understanding god's word - condor flying over San Jose, CA

“Understanding God’s word you need it”

1 John 2:4 (ERV) If we say we know God but do not obey his commands, we are lying. The truth is not in us. [read 1 John 2:3-11; Titus 1:10-16 (16); Hosea 8:1-3]

Do you know God? I mean do you understand and live by (obey) His word? The message in the picture is actually two messages, the first is given to you, “understanding God’s word you need it“. The second is, “understanding you need it“! Did you notice the fonts (style of the letters) and colors of the words, of course some will see more messages but I purposely gave two.

Understanding God’s word is so vital to our Spiritual well-being. In this series I cover and focus on getting to know God better through His word. Use this Bible study to help grasp the spiritual side of the word ‘understanding‘. Please take your time with this study and read the scriptures. Remember to pray and ask the Lord to open your mind for understanding His word. Hopefully you will make it to the end of the Bible study and have a better understanding of the word of God and what He wants you to do.

Please enjoy this four-part series: Understanding God’s Word – You Need It

Understanding God’s Word
Part One

picture for understanding god's word - California beach sunset

“Make sure you understand God’s word – Your eternal life depends on it!”

Matthew 13:19 and 23 (ICB) What is the seed that fell by the road? That seed is like the person who hears the teaching about the kingdom but does not understand it. The Evil One comes and takes away the things that were planted in that person’s heart. 23 But what is the seed that fell on the good ground? That seed is like the person who hears the teaching and understands it. That person grows and produces fruit, sometimes 100 times more, sometimes 60 times more, and sometimes 30 times more.”

We must have a good understanding of God’s word. What does the word understanding mean from a biblical point of view?

Understanding is having and applying knowledge received by God through His word.

Psalm 111:10 (NIRV) If you really want to become wise, you must begin by having respect for the Lord. All those who follow his rules have good understanding. People should praise him forever.

God is the source of understanding

Understanding is acting in obedience to the guidance of the Holy Spirit in accord or agreement with God’s word. Compare this to showing your faith by your works or for example, having knowledge of a car—you know they exist—but you do not know how to drive. Understanding is putting spiritual knowledge into obedient action; it is proof that we know God.

Proverbs 3:5-6 Amplified Bible (AMP) Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. 6 In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.

1 John 5:20 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW) We know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we know the real God. We are in the one who is real, his Son Jesus Christ. This Jesus Christ is the real God and eternal life.

Proverbs 3:13-14 (AMP) Happy (blessed, fortunate, enviable) is the man who finds skillful and godly Wisdom, and the man who gets understanding [drawing it forth from God’s Word and life’s experiences], 14 For the gaining of it is better than the gaining of silver, and the profit of it better than fine gold.

Scriptures to read and study:

Matthew 13:18-23 (19 and 23) {Mark 4:13-20; Luke 8:11-15}; Proverbs 3:5-6, 13-18 (13-14) {Job 28:12-18; Proverbs 8:12-21; I Timothy 4:8}; 1 John 5:18-21 (20); Psalms 111:10 {Proverbs 3:4; 13:15; John 7:17}

Question for ‘understanding God’s word – part 1’: Do you know and understand who God is?

To continue this Bible study series please go to part two.

Understanding God’s Word
Part Two

picture for understanding god's word - San Jose, CA

“Please understand, you must understand God’s word, to know God and understand what He wants you to do”

Before starting this Bible study please review part one.

Proverbs 2:1-9 (ERV) My son, pay attention to what I say. Remember my commands. 2 Listen to wisdom, and do your best to understand. 3 Ask for good judgment. Cry out for understanding. 4 Look for wisdom like silver. Search for it like hidden treasure. 5 If you do this, you will understand what it means to respect the Lord, and you will come to know God. 6 The Lord is the source of wisdom; knowledge and understanding come from his mouth. 7 He gives good advice to honest people and shields those who do what is right. 8 He makes sure that people are treated fairly. He watches over his loyal followers. 9 If you listen to him, you will understand what is just and fair and how to do what is right.

Rarely will I use or put so much emphasis on one block of scriptures to convey a message, but Proverbs 2:1-9 is the exception. Let’s “pay attention” to what God is telling us. This is loaded with action words (verbs); “calls to action”. I am actually getting excited for us, this is such a treasure, so please stop, turn off anything that might distract you and prepare for solid spiritual nutrition.

God’s call to action and the benefits

Understanding God’s word can be simple, take a look at the action words; like many instances with God these are conditional terms.

  • Pay attention to, accept, receive, follow, listen to my words
  • Remember, store up, treasure my commands
  • Listen to, incline (tune in, harken) your ears to wisdom
  • Do your best to, apply your heart to, engage your mind to understand(ing)
  • Ask for, cry after, call out for good judgment / insight / knowledge
  • Cry out for, lift (raise) up your voice for understanding
  • Look for, search for, hunt for, seek wisdom
  • Listen to the Lord (wisdom)

Next check the benefits of meeting the above conditions; if you do the above then you will:

  • Understand, know what it means to respect (fear) the Lord
  • Come to know, discover (find) the knowledge of, succeed in learning about God
  • Understand, discover
    • what is just
    • fair
    • how to do what is right

The unconditional truths about the Lord (God):

  • He is the source of:
    • Wisdom
    • Knowledge (from His mouth or through His word)
    • Understanding (from His mouth or through His word)
  • He gives good advice to those who obey Him
  • He protects those who do what is right
  • He makes sure people are treated fairly (receive justice)
  • He watches over His loyal (faithful) followers (His saints, the godly)
Scriptures to read and study:

Proverbs 2:1-9 (2, 3b, 5-6 and 9); 4:1-9; Acts 17:10-15 (11); Ephesians 1:15-23 (17-18)

Question for ‘understanding God’s word – part 2’: Are you meeting the conditions?

Understanding God’s Word
Part Three

picture for understanding god's word - Los Gatos Creek Park, Los Gatos, CA

“God wants us to know who He is – so He helps us understand who He is”

Before starting this Bible study please review part one and part two.

What is understanding?

In part one I gave a definition of understanding but let’s take a different approach, let’s use the word of God to describe understanding.

  • Departing or staying (turning) away from evil – Job 28:28 {Proverbs 3:7; 14:16; 16:6}
  • Knowledge of the Holy One – Proverbs 9:10
  • It is a fountain (wellspring) of life to those who have (use) it – Proverbs 16:22 {Proverbs 10:11; 13:14 and John 6:63}
  • The possessor has a cool (excellent) spirit (is calm, even-tempered) Proverbs 17:27
How do we get understanding?
  • Through God’s word:
    • through your precepts (instructions, guiding principles, rules) I get understandingPsalms 119:104
    • learning your words gives understanding…” Psalms 119:130 {Acts 26:12-18 (17-18); 2 Corinthians 3:7-18 (14-18)}
  • By faith – Hebrews 11:1-3 (3)
  • Directly from God:
    • God gave Solomon wisdom and very great (unlimited) understanding1 Kings 4:29-31
    • he opened their minds so they could understand the ScripturesLuke 24:45 {Acts 16:11-15 (14)}

James 1:19-21 (ISV) You must understand this, my dear brothers. Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. 20 For human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, rid yourselves of everything impure and every expression of wickedness, and with a gentle spirit welcome the word planted in you that can save your souls.

Scriptures to read and study:

Psalms 119:97-104 (104); Job 28:20-28 (28); James 1:19-25 (19-21); 1 Kings 4:20-34 (29-31); Luke 24:44-49 (45)

Question for ‘understanding God’s word – part 3′: Do you know and understand who God is?

Understanding God’s Word
Part Four

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“Do your best to get to know and understand me. – I Love You, sincerely, God”

“Getting and Using Understanding – part four”

This is the last of a four-part series; before starting this Bible study please review part one, part two and part three.

John 8:43 NLV Why do you not understand what I say? It is because you do not want to hear My teaching.

Reasons people do not understand God

Are you having a tough time understanding God? Once again we will use the word of God to understand why people fail to understand God:

  • You do not want to hear the word of God [John 8:43]
  • You do not want to trust or believe in God [John 8:45; Ephesians 4:17-24 (17-19)]
  • You are not born of God {born again; those who are born of God listen to God’s Word [John 8:47]
  • You fail to do what is right or obey God [Isaiah 42:18-25 (25)]

More scriptures to read and study: Matthew 13:10-17 (14-15) {Isaiah 6:8-12 (9); Mark 4:10-12 (12); Luke 8:9-10 (10); John 12:37-41 (40); Acts 28:17-31 (26-27); Romans 11:1-10 (8)}; Job 12:13-25 (13 and 24)

It IS possible to understand God

Romans 1:18-21 (ICB) God’s anger is shown from heaven against all the evil and wrong things that people do. By their own evil lives they hide the truth. 19 God shows his anger because everything that may be known about God has been made clear. Yes, God has clearly shown them everything that may be known about him. 20 There are things about God that people cannot see—his eternal power and all the things that make him God. But since the beginning of the world those things have been easy to understand. They are made clear by what God has made. So people have no excuse for the bad things they do. 21 They knew God. But they did not give glory to God, and they did not thank him. Their thinking became useless. Their foolish minds were filled with darkness.

2 Timothy 2:3-7 (OEB) Share hardships with me, as a true soldier of Christ Jesus.

4 A soldier on active service, to please his superior officer, always avoids entangling himself in the affairs of ordinary life. [1 Corinthians 9:25]

5 No athlete is ever awarded the wreath of victory unless they have kept the rules.

6 The laborer who does the work should be the first to receive a share of the fruits of the earth. [1 Corinthians 9:10]

7 Reflect on what I say; the Lord will always help you to understand.

James 3:13 (NSB) Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by his good conduct that his works are from meekness because of wisdom.

Scriptures to read and study:

John 8:37-47 (43); Romans 1:18-32 (19-21 and 28-32); Hebrews 5:11-14 (11 and 14); 2 Timothy 2:1-7 (3-7); James 3:13-18 (13)

Question for ‘understanding God’s word – part 4’: Are you doing all you can to get an understanding of God?

Understanding God’s Word
Conclusion
picture for understanding god's word - california beach

“Please, Lord, hear my prayer
and give me the understanding that comes from your word. – Understanding God’s Word”
Psalms 119:169 (CEV)

Psalm 119:169-176 Contemporary English Version (CEV) Please, Lord, hear my prayer and give me the understanding that comes from your word. 170 Listen to my concerns and keep me safe, just as you have promised. 171 If you will teach me your laws, I will praise you 172 and sing about your promise, because all of your teachings are what they ought to be.

173 Be ready to protect me because I have chosen to obey your laws. 174 I am waiting for you to save me, Lord. Your Law makes me happy.

175 Keep me alive, so I can praise you, and let me find help in your teachings. 176 I am your servant, but I have wandered away like a lost sheep. Please come after me, because I have not forgotten your teachings.

Understanding God’s word is not difficult when allow the Holy Spirit to teach us. I want to make sure you know what understanding means. Take a look at this in a new way; understanding is the key word. The following words have opposite meanings to the word ‘understanding’ and I must say I was not ready for this:

  • Brutal – unsympathetic, indifferent
  • Cruel – merciless, rough, hard
  • Impatient – annoyed
  • Intolerant – narrow-minded, bigoted / prejudiced
  • Sharing – giving, charitable
  • Thoughtless – inconsiderate and uncaring
  • Unfriendly – unpleasant and mean
  • Without feeling – heartless, coldhearted

So understanding is more than “having and applying knowledge received by God through His word”. It is the way we think (our attitude), the way we act; if I am an understanding person, I am:

  • Kind – sympathetic, concerned
  • Gentle – full of mercy, pleasant
  • Patient – untroubled
  • Forgiving – broad-minded, impartial
  • Unselfish – not self-centered
  • Thoughtful – considerate and caring
  • Friendly – nice and loving
  • Compassionate – sensitive, softhearted

The truth about understanding is more than you think, do you really understand what the word ‘understand‘ means?

Psalm 92:5-6 (CEB) How awesome are your works, Lord! Your thoughts are so deep! 6 Ignorant people don’t know—fools don’t understand this:

Psalms 119:33-34 (UKJV) Teach me, O LORD, the way of your statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end. 34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep your law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.

Proverbs 1:5-6 (KJV) A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels: 6 To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.

Understanding God’s word is not the final message here but we must strive to become an understanding person. Is that the conclusion, is this the end? It really depends on you, do you need more to gain an understanding of God’s word, of God? Be blessed—Tim.

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Published on: Wednesday, August 6, 2014 | Last update: Sunday, July 19, 2015

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Bishop Pettiford

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