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2003 - The Year of Biblical Discernment


2003 - The Year of Biblical Discernment

2002 was a difficult year. More bombings, war, stock market plunges, and sniper shootings. Perhaps, though, that was not the worst that happened. As churches move away from the Word as the platform for their fellowship, worship, and preaching we must ask, "Why is the church losing her discernment, and what can I do to help restore it?"

Please join with me in declaring 2003 as ‘The Year of Biblical Discernment’. Why? Because the Lord has declared many times in His Word that we are to seek after and cry out for discernment. It is something we are supposed to be doing anyway. However, beyond that, we can take this year to emphasize the great need that our "postmodern" church has for seeking after and gaining discernment.

What can you do to make 2003 ‘The Year of Biblical Discernment’?
Listed below are very simple, one-time activities you can personally participate in to help make this ‘The Year of Biblical Discernment’.

All Believers:
  • Briefly pray at least once that the church would recover more of her will to discern.
  • Read one book on the topic of "discernment". Possible reading list from which to choose a book:
  • A Call to Discernment by Jay Adams
  • Reckless Faith--When the Church Loses Its Will to Discern by John MacArthur
  • Christianity in Crisis by Hank Hanegraaff
  • The Coming Evangelical Crisis edited by John Armstrong
  • The Compromised Church edited by John Armstrong
  • True Revival by John Armstrong

Fathers:
  • Consciously put aside one hour sometime this year to teach your son or daughter the fundamentals of Bible interpretation (the beginning of discernment and the beginning of wisdom--Proverbs 4:7).

  • Pastors:
  • Teach one sermon during 2003 on the importance and necessity of "discernment".

  • Web Site owners:
  • Post a simple link on your "home" page. The link text should read: "2003 - The Year of Biblical Discernment". The link should take the person to a web page on your site that contains this same list of "What you can do to make 2003 ‘The Year of Biblical Discernment,’" or you may simply link to this web page (thefaithfulword.org/yearofdiscernment.html).
  • Post one new article on your web site this year on the topic of discernment.
  • Will this make a difference?
    No one but God truly knows whether joining together to emphasize 2003 as ‘The Year of Biblical Discernment’ will make a difference. Nonetheless, doing this one minor thing is simple, calls attention to the need, complies in some small way with God’s commands to seek discernment, and could be used by the Holy Spirit to work on people and churches in ways we cannot know and may never find out about.

    Please consider joining us in declaring 2003 to be ‘The Year of Biblical Discernment’. And please, take just a few seconds right now and pray that the church would be obedient this year in diligently seeking after discernment.

    Thank you. May God be greatly glorified by His people in 2003.

    C. W. Booth -- Site Manager, TheFaithfulWord.org




    Some Passages Emphasizing the Importance of Discernment

    In Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream at night; and God said, "Ask what you wish me to give you." Then Solomon said, "You have shown great lovingkindness to Your servant David my father, according as he walked before You in truth and righteousness and uprightness of heart toward You; and You have reserved for him this great lovingkindness, that You have given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is this day. "Now, O LORD my God, You have made Your servant king in place of my father David, yet I am but a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in. Your servant is in the midst of Your people which You have chosen, a great people who are too many to be numbered or counted. So give Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people to discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?"

    It was pleasing in the sight of the Lord that Solomon had asked this thing. God said to him, "Because you have asked this thing and have not asked for yourself long life, nor have asked riches for yourself, nor have you asked for the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself discernment to understand justice, behold, I have done according to your words. Behold, I have given you a wise and discerning heart, so that there has been no one like you before you, nor shall one like you arise after you.

    (1 Kings 3:5-12)


    Now therefore, O kings, show discernment; Take warning, O judges of the earth. Worship the LORD with reverence And rejoice with trembling. Do homage to the Son, that He not become angry, and you perish in the way, For His wrath may soon be kindled. How blessed are all who take refuge in Him!

    (Psalms 2:10-12)


    Teach me good discernment and knowledge, For I believe in Your commandments. Before I was afflicted I went astray, But now I keep Your word. You are good and do good; Teach me Your statutes.

    (Psalms 119:66-68)


    The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naive, To the youth knowledge and discretion, A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles.

    The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.

    (Proverbs 1:1-7)


    My son, if you will receive my words And treasure my commandments within you,
    Make your ear attentive to wisdom, Incline your heart to understanding;
    For if you cry for discernment, Lift your voice for understanding;
    If you seek her as silver And search for her as for hidden treasures;
    Then you will discern the fear of the LORD And discover the knowledge of God.
    For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.
    He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity,
    Guarding the paths of justice, And He preserves the way of His godly ones.
    Then you will discern righteousness and justice And equity {and} every good course.
    (Proverbs 2:1-9)

    On the lips of the discerning, wisdom is found, But a rod is for the back of him who lacks understanding.

    (Proverbs 10:13)


    A scoffer seeks wisdom and {finds} none, But knowledge is easy to one who has understanding.

    Leave the presence of a fool, Or you will not discern words of knowledge.

    (Proverbs 14:6-7)


    When its limbs are dry, they are broken off; Women come {and} make a fire with them, For they are not a people of discernment, Therefore their Maker will not have compassion on them. And their Creator will not be gracious to them.

    (Isaiah 27:11)


    "Moreover, they shall teach My people the difference between the holy and the profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean."

    (Ezekiel 44:23)


    And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ; having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

    (Philippians 1:9-11)


    But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.

    (Hebrews 5:14)


    All verses quoted from the NAS.


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