Thursday, November 20, 2008

Meditating on the Bible...

...with the help of google.

This is more to aid my memory than a fully formed post.

Some time ago, I heard some teaching on Christian meditation; how meditation is in fact biblical, but not the same as the meditation that is stereotyped from Eastern religions, IE clear your mind of everything!

Since then, I have added it to my list of ways to study my bible. I really like the idea of taking just one story or scene from the bible and really dwelling on it. Asking yourself questions about the people, the motives or the setting. One of the reasons I seek out John Ortberg's teaching is that his understanding of language, and cultural norms really help me to look deeper at what was going-on in and around any given story.

I'm currently reading through Acts. I have just read Acts 3 11-26. Not exactly a famous passage. (I've never seen it quoted on a bumper sticker!)

Just before this section, there has been a miraculous healing at the 'Beautiful' gate of the temple. People, unsurprisingly, are amazed and focus on Peter, John and the 'beggar'. There's a sort of address by Peter in this passage to the onlookers. Peter asks why they're looking at him and John like it was their power that had healed the man. He then goes on to talk about Jesus and the death and resurrection (what an opportunist!)

So, I read the passage a couple of times and started to picture the scene and I noticed that all of this was happening in 'Solomon's Colonnade'. So I thought I'd google it. I was a little surprised to see it come up as an auto-answer on google.

So I checked it out. For your information, Solomon's colonnade was a roofless walkway, 45' long with 38' high columns (according to google.) It was part of the temple complex but not of the temple itself. Gentiles could be in that area.

What struck me more as I searched was what else had happened in that area. In John 10, at pretty much the end of His ministry, Jesus is in discussion with the pharisees. He claims to be the Messiah and to be One with God. Pretty much the beginning of the end for Him really...

So, on the same spot (ish) where Jesus said that, just a short time later, Peter stands there declaring that what Jesus had said was true and that the miracle they had witnessed was in fact proof of it all!

Kinda takes an average miracle (how Western does that sound!) and makes it a part of something much bigger. God showing that through the life and faith of one man, His glory can be shown.


  1. Anonymous9:45 am

    I went on a retreat about Christian meditation - t'was quite good - can lend you the notes if you want?


  2. Sounds good. What did you learn?

  3. Anonymous9:39 am

    Well the main point was contemplative awareness. More of a realisation that God is on every moment not just the moments you decide he is in. Therefore prayer is a constant conversation with God
    The meditation was about looking at a particular word or phrase that speaks to you and focusing on that and asking God to talk with you through it