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1/08/2012

Book Study: Disciplines of a Godly Woman

Ahhh... sippin' a white chocolate mocha, reading a book I'm excited to share with you.  It's called Disciplines of a Godly Woman by Babara Hughes.  Go ahead, click on the book... order yourself one.  You'll be glad you did.


Lately, my soul has been hungering for encouragement.  One Sunday I walked into our bookstore at church the other day and realized I didn't recognize very many books offered.  I thumbed through several and kept coming back to this one.  The first reason was my heart was pricked by the word "Discipline" because that's an action I've avoided and not learned to do well in many areas of my life.  Secondly, as I read a random page I found myself longing to read more.  

Up to this point I'm not very far in the book so I am going to take this opportunity to begin jotting down some things that have stood out to me, which will hopefully cause you to think, be challenged  and be encouraged by.
 Chapter 1: Discipline for Godliness

1 Timothy 4:7  "Train yourself to be godly."  One section's sub-heading reads 'The Godliness Workout'.  Already I know I need to be involved in this.  Big time.  

'The apostle Paul links this idea of necessary training or discipline with the spiritual life.  First Timothy 4:7 says, "Train yourself to be godly."  That word train is derived from the very ancient Greek word from which we get the English word gymnasium.  By New Testament time it referred to exercise and training in general.  In a sense, Paul is saying, " Gymnastisize yourself for the purpose of godliness."  He's calling for a spiritual workout.

'It's this spiritual workout that Paul deems so much more important than a morning jog around town.  He goes on to say, "For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.'  (Page 12)

So this is going to take work, but it as Paul says... it godliness has value for ALL THINGS!  How encouraging!  My heart is cheering on my soul to, "Press on! Press on!" in this pursuit.  :)

Chapter 2:  Discipline of the Gospel
The Source of Godliness
In this chapter she asks, "What is the Gospel?"  We might use many words to describe the Gospel, the Gospel's benefits, and witnessing techniques before we realize that "the Gospel itself got lost in that fog of words." (pg. 21)

We are reminded that "The Gospel belongs to God... From cover to cover the Bible is about God's Gospel.  It was His idea and His plan..."  (pg. 21)  

OOhhh, she has some juicy words in the next section titled 'Christ Crucified... According to the Scriptures'.  Barabara brings in 1 Corinthians 15: 1-4 as the foundational text in knowing the gospel.  

Paul writes, "Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.
    For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures" (emphasis mine).

She explains that the prophets of old (think Old Testament) wrote their books "in order that we who live on this side of the cross might recognize Jesus as the Christ, the one true Messiah who alone holds the words of life -- the Gospel.  They wrote for our benefit!  So hear this:  "For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope" (Romans 15:4)." (pg. 23)

SUM IT UP!  

So the gospel is... Jesus Christ died for our sins and after 3 days was resurrected from the dead... according to the scriptures!  There is a reason we had the prophets sent before us.  Not for their benefit, but so that we might see Jesus as the Christ, the Messiah, who's life and death IS the Gospel.

Please note, I've just introduced the beginning of chapter 2 and hopefully perked your interest.  

Do you want to join me in studying this book?  Please leave me a note if you are studying along with me or if you've read this before - I would be happy to hear what you were encouraged by!

*Meghan


Also, much thanks goes to my husband for "kicking me out" of the house this afternoon for some time to myself (no kids!).  Isn't he great?!