Find Meditation in The Bible
Meditation is deeply ingrained in the Bible and God’s Word. Biblical meditation can ease anxiety, generate an inward understanding of scripture, and strengthen your relationship with God. Whether you’re new to meditating on the Bible or want to deepen your practice, we have a few excellent tips for a more fulfilling experience.
Learn everything you need to know about meditating on the Bible, including what it means to meditate, the benefits of meditation, and a few steps to get you started. We’ll also leave you with a few of our favorite scriptures to use while meditating.
What Is Bible Meditation?
Bible meditation is the focused practice of thinking, contemplating, and immersing oneself in God’s Word. Biblical meditation is your chance to deepen your understanding and interaction with scripture. It’s your time to fill your mind with God’s Word and strongly consider what it means in general and to you and your life.
Bible meditation helps you overcome daily obstacles that may prevent you from strengthening your faith. A few primary goals of Bible meditation include:
The few mentions of meditation in the Bible refer to it as a form of deep contemplation. While similar in some ways, meditation isn’t the same as prayer. Both prayer and Biblical meditation are important for a well-rounded, purposeful relationship with God.
Who Can Meditate on the Bible?
Anyone who wants to deepen their faith, improve scripture retention, and strengthen their relationship with God can meditate on the Bible. Meditation was once thought to only be a practice for monks in Eastern religions like Hinduism and Buddhism, but that’s no longer the case.
Meditation was also once thought of as a Pagan act. However, Bible meditation couldn’t be further than traditional Pagan meditation. To Pagans, the act of meditation is about emptying and freeing the mind, often referred to as transcendental meditation. Bible meditation, instead, aims to fill the mind with God’s words. Bible meditation is intentional and purposeful.
Thomas Watson was one of the first religious leaders to highlight the importance of Biblical meditation. Watson was a 17th-century English pastor who wrote a book on meditating on the Bible. Watson quoted, “The reason we come away so cold from reading the word is because we do not warm ourselves at the fire of meditation.”
Rather than freeing our minds of all thoughts, biblical meditation is about a deeper understanding of Bible scripture and God’s Word. Christian meditation is unique and unlike other versions of meditation. Whereas other forms of meditation focus on self-care, Bible meditation prioritizes the care of others. A deeper, more meaningful relationship with God allows you to share the benefits of Biblical meditation with others.
Another important difference between Eastern meditation and Biblical meditation is the sense of detachment. Whereas Eastern meditation styles encourage a detachment from the self and one’s word, Biblical meditation aims to create a stronger attachment to the Bible and the Word.
Benefits of Meditation With the Bible
From learning God’s truth to practicing mindfulness, there are many benefits of meditating on God’s word, including:
Improve Spiritual Attentiveness and Understanding
Daily Bible reading has the opportunity to nourish, and biblical meditation helps us better understand that nourishment. Meditating on the Bible allows you to be attentive to God and open to his Word. It encourages you to learn the Biblical truth and apply it in your daily life.
Overcome anxiety and Manage Stress
Anxiety and stress are all too common in today’s world. Biblical meditation can offer moral strength and help you overcome some of your worries. When you meditate on the Bible, you can share your worries with God and ask that his holy spirit guide you toward peace and contentment.
Philippians 4:8 encourages us to meditate on things that are true, righteous, pure, lovable, well-spoken-of, virtuous, and praiseworthy rather than immorality, greed, wickedness, or deceit. Encouraging a more positive way of thinking helps you develop skills, like mindfulness meditation, to overcome anxiety while also learning how to restructure your thoughts for more positive outcomes.
Meditation promotes comfort and healing, especially when using God’s word. While the primary goal of Biblical meditation isn’t relaxation, many do experience a sense of calming or comfort when engaged in it. God’s words can ease and calm the mind, so it’s only natural that when you set aside dedicated time to do just that, you’re also met with comfort.
Gives Us the Opportunity to Offer Thanks
Busy lives and schedules can make it difficult to set aside enough time to give thanks to God and Lord Jesus. Meditation is a time of peace and quiet reserved for considering how we can be joyous, celebrate God’s word, and give thanks. Designating time to meditate on the Bible and your favorite verses also encourages you to set aside time for worshiping God.
Improves relationship with God
Bible meditation helps deepen your relationship with God. Too often, a Christian’s faith and commitment to God are judged by their church attendance or participation. Daily Bible readings educate, whereas Biblical meditation allows those lessons to resonate inward on a deeper emotional and psychological meaning.
Some even consider meditation to be a two-way conversation with God. You can use this time of quiet and reflection to speak to or share praise with God. God also asks us as Christians to meditate on his word. Bible scripture continuously asks us to meditate, think, set our minds on certain thoughts, and contemplate.
An important part of being a Christian is strengthening and expanding ourselves to be better servants of God. Bible meditation helps us stay humble, repent for our sins, and avoid becoming complacent. The knowledge and lessons of God you use in your Bible meditations can help you live a more fulfilling and lasting life. Daily meditation also encourages a sense of holiness, helping turn us away from sin and live a meaningful, action-driven life of faith that’s consistent with God’s purpose.
Remember, Psalm 1:2-3 says, “A person who meditates is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither, whatever they do prospers.”
Remember that even Jesus Christ meditated in the Bible to gain strength. God and many of his disciples also meditated, including Isaac, Mary, and Paul.
Mark 1:35 says – “And rising very early, while it was still dark (Christ Jesus) departed and went out to a desolate plate, and there he prayed.”
Isaac, the promised son of Abraham and Sarah, also made biblical meditation an important part of his life.
Whether reading or meditating on the Bible, it encourages an inward curiosity that helps us strengthen our relationship with God. Peter encouraged Christians to grow and expand their knowledge of the Lord; meditating is a great way to do this. Similar to Bible study groups, Biblical meditation encourages curiosity and a deeper understanding of individual scriptures and God’s presence.
Meditation leads to a deeper understanding of the Bible, which improves knowledge. This stronger knowledge helps with retention and enables you to become a leader and steward of God’s character. The Bible holds a significant amount of important readings, making it difficult to fully understand everything you read. When you meditate, you have the opportunity to think thoroughly about the different lessons and God’s promise.
Some lessons in the Bible can also be confusing, and others may have conflicting descriptions of their meaning. For example, the meaning of one scripture in a Catholic Church may differ from that of a Presbyterian Church. Bible meditation offers a unique opportunity to think deeply about some of these lessons, helping you strengthen your understanding and interpret your own meaning.
Reading the Bible and truly understanding how to translate God’s words into positive action and spiritual discipline takes some work. Meditation is the perfect opportunity to consider important scriptures and how they can be used to strengthen your Christianity and convert lessons into practice.
How To Meditate on the Bible
There’s no right or wrong way to meditate, just as there’s no specific way to read and learn God’s words. In fact, some people may find that they have already meditated on the Bible in one way or another. However, we’ve created a list of steps to help you begin your scripture meditation:
You may find yourself thinking or, in some form, meditating throughout much of your day. Our daily thoughts may be a form of meditation but without intention.
Setting an intention for your meditation practice can help make it more fulfilling. A few examples of intentions might include:
- Seek retention of the knowledge of God.
- Consider how to apply the Word of God.
- Greet God and offer praise.
- Dedicate time to a deeper understanding of Biblical words.
- Be receptive to a strong relationship with God.
Set Aside Time
Setting aside time to meditate ensures you follow through with it. Try to choose a specific day and time each week. You may even add another meditation session when you feel overly anxious or stressed. Planning meditation after church also allows you to reflect on the daily lessons and consider how to apply them in life.
Starting your day with meditation allows you to enjoy some of the benefits, including handing over your worries to God. The Word of God will also be fresh in your mind, so you can share the power with others or instill it inward to live a joyous, peaceful, kind, and faithful life. Ultimately, though, the best time to meditate is at a time that works for you. Meditating after reading the Bible is also a great way to deepen your understanding of God’s Word.
Choose a Calm Place
You’ll want to choose a place that’s quiet and comfortable. You may have to wait until the kids go to bed or everyone’s out of the house for a few hours. Peace and quiet allow you to focus on your meditation without distraction, but you don’t need perfect peace to meditate. Some people may find waking up early before the rest of the household is a nice time to meditate and prepare for the busy day ahead. Remember, you don’t need to be in a church to pray or meditate on God’s Word. Choose a place that allows you to be alone with God.
Even God claims that there isn’t a specific place in which you must meditate. Matt 6:6 says, “Go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is unseen.”
Find a Comfortable Position
There’s no right or wrong position when meditating. Finding a comfortable position allows you to free your mind and focus on the words in front of you. The discipline of meditation requires being present with God. If a position is uncomfortable, choose a new one. You don’t have to sit in any special way or in any specific location to meditate on the Bible properly.
Pray for Help When Needed
Don’t give up if you don’t feel like you’re doing it right the first few times. Meditation requires ongoing practice. If you’re really struggling to find purpose or focus, pray for help. Ask God to clear your mind and fill it with relative meaning. You might also pray before, during, or after Biblical meditation to easily accept and resonate with the Lord’s Word.
Some people may find value in taking notes when preparing for Bible meditation. You can jot down a few notes while attending church about scriptures or topics you want to think about deeper. You may even write a few notes about the thoughts that filled your mind during a previous Bible meditation, including ways that you can use them to live a more spiritual and holistic life.
If you’re still having a hard time directing your thoughts toward a meaningful meditation, try being visual. Imagine the scripture playing out in your head, whether from the Bible or in your personal life.
Choose a Scripture
The foundation of Biblical meditation is scripture. We have included a list below of scriptures you may use in your meditation. Break your favorite or new scriptures up line by line and give each one dedicated time and consideration. Connect the ways in which you plan to live your life with the words written in the scripture.
You can also sign up for verse a day to receive daily scriptures to use in your meditation. Bible software can also provide you with access to daily scriptures. You might also customize your daily scripture based on where you’re currently at in life or existing struggles. For example, you might choose Bible verses for healing when you need comfort or strength. Bible verses for hope can help you through tough times.
You might choose the scripture of Phillippians 4:6-7 to deal with overcoming anxiety. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God.”
You could use scriptures from the Bible, or you could choose Bible study materials from Thomas Nelson. Lectio Divina spiritual readings are also a useful form of Biblical meditation for spiritual growth.
The idea of discipline is important in the Bible, as it stresses its necessity to follow and stay consistent with God’s Word. Developing a relationship with Biblical meditation is similar to fostering any new relationship in your life. Your Bible meditation discipline should be consistent, valuable, and personalized.
Invite Others to Meditate
Inviting others to meditate can also help you better understand its purpose and benefits. Set aside time each evening before bed for the family to meditate together. Encourage a few minutes of quiet time to give everyone time to reflect on their thoughts. Discussing any thoughts that come up or overall experience can help each person deepen their meditative practice.
Sometimes, the best way to meditate on the Bible is just to do it. Practice makes perfect and allows you to get what you desire most from Bible meditation. Start small by thinking of your favorite line of scripture. Pray to God to guide you in your musing on the most important lessons and values you might learn.
Bible Verses To Use During Meditation
Here are a few great bible verses you can use to guide your meditation:
- Isaiah 41:10 – “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
- Matthew 7:12 – “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.”
- John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
- Philippians 4:8 – “Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”
- Matthew 6:34 – “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”
You’ll find at least 23 references to meditation in the Bible, with examples in both the Old Testament and the New Testament. Most mentions of biblical meditation include meditating on the Lord, whether it be his actions, words, God’s law, or testimonies. Some Hebrew words that translate to the word meditation include:
- Hagad (hāgâ) – means to roar, grow, or groan. You can find this passage in Joshua 1:8 and Psalm 1:2.
- Siyach (sîḥâ) – means to complain, contemplate, ponder, or muse. It involves a quiet contemplation of the heart and mind with oneself. You can find this passage in Psalm 77:6 and Psalm 103:34.
Some verse references to meditation in the Bible that you may also use include:
- Psalm 1:2 – “Blessed is the man whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.”
- Psalm 143:5 – “I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works; I muse on the work of thy hands.”
- Joshua 1:8 – “This Book of the Law shall not depart out of thy mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may carefully do according to all that is written in it.”
- Colossians 3:2-4 – “Set your mind on things above, not on Earthly things. For you died, and your life is not hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also appear with him in glory.
Meditation can be found in most versions of the Bible. Biblical meditation is as important as daily prayer and allows you to foster a deeper, more meaningful relationship with your faith. Meditating on the Bible is often a practice of scripture. You can choose your favorite scriptures or ones you want to understand better. You can also sign up for verse a day notifications to guide your meditative practice.