Today’s AMI QT Devotional, written by Pastor Barry Kang of Symphony Church in Boston, was originally posted on April 5, 2013.
Devotional Thought for Today
“Experiencing God in Taking Refugee in Him”
Psalm 34:8 (NIV 1984)
Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.
Psalm 34:8 tells us that our God is delighted when we personally experience him. Our knowledge of God is not meant to be just intellectual and theological; it is also meant to be experiential. God’s goodness, love, presence, and grace are the truths that He invites us to experience.
So how can we “taste and see that the LORD is good”? Psalm 34:8 gives a clue: We experience the goodness of God when we take refuge in Him, that is, when we actively put our lives in his hands. We cannot experience God’s goodness from afar any more than we can taste the delicious food just by looking at the pictures. We have to draw near, that is, take refuge in God; then we will taste and see!
Are you putting your life in God’s hands? Can you say that you are taking refuge in him? Today, whenever troubles come your way, lift them up in prayer before you try to solve them on your own.
Prayer: Father, what an awesome God you are! Help me to taste and see Your goodness as I put my life in your hands. I put my trust in you alone for I know that you are faithful. May I continue to grow in my knowledge (both theological and experiential) of you. In Jesus’s name, I pray. Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Acts 21
Lunch Break Study
Read 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 (NIV): For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
Questions to Consider
- The early church read Psalm 34:8 whenever they took the Lord’s Supper. In what way is Psalm 34:8 an appropriate verse to read?
- What does Jesus mean by the New Covenant? (cf. Jeremiah 31:31-34)
- How exactly are we to remember the death of Jesus? What does it mean to remember?
- In eating the bread and taking the cup, we are tangibly and viscerally reminded of the sacrifice of Jesus. At the Lord’s Supper, we remember that Jesus suffered and died to forgive our sins and to restores us from the ravages of sins. In this way, we are literally tasting and seeing the goodness of God!
- Jeremiah 31:31-34 foretold of the New Covenant that God would one day establish with his people. A covenant is a solemn agreement between two parties, which establishes a relationship. The New Covenant, in contrast to the Old (which God established with the Israelites through Moses), is one where the relationship with God is characterized not by adherence to the Law but by God writing the Law on our hearts. We enter into this relationship with God when we believe that Jesus died to pay the penalty of ours sins and shed his blood to forgive us. This is when God’s Law is written on our hearts when the Holy Spirit regenerates us so that we can believe. Thereafter, we need to continue to follow Jesus and worship him.
- Remembering Jesus’s death means more than recollecting the event of Jesus on the cross in our minds. We can see here in 1 Corinthians 11 that remembering Jesus is an active process that involves not just our minds, but also our actions and senses (via the partaking of the Lord’s Supper). This means that we can actively remember Jesus’s death and the New Covenant (established on his shed blood) throughout our lives by partaking of this sacrament.
Additional commentary: In the New Testament, the primary way we “taste and see” the goodness of God is when we survey the cross and then actively remember the death of Jesus. The sacrament of the Lord’s Supper reminds us that our remembrance of Jesus is not just with our minds, but with our tongues and actions as well. The Lord’s Supper is itself an evangelistic drama that shows the audience a God who loved us so much that he gave his one and only son that all who believe in him will not perish but have eternal life!
Write of your experiences with God this week. How have you experienced his goodness and faithfulness? In what ways have you experienced the power of the resurrection?