TUESDAY, MAY 19
“Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.”
Philippians 4:9 (NLT2)
There were two doctors with the same name who lived a few doors apart. One doctor was a Christian and a lay preacher; the other doctor made no profession of faith. One night a rather sick person, who was also a Christian, and wanting help from a fellow believer, knocked mistakenly at the door of the non-Christian doctor. When the door opened the patient asked, “Are you the doctor who preaches?” “No”, the medic replied, “I am the doctor who practices.” “Oh”, said the sick person, “I’ve always understood the two things were inseparable.”
We should all practice what we preach. Good doctrine should lead to good practice. And godly learning should lead to godly living. In Philippians 4:9 Paul reminds us to keep practicing what we have learned. This is the intellectual part of our faith. We don’t all need to get degrees in theology but we are all challenged to grow in our knowledge of what the bible teaches and how to live that out daily.
The word “learned” comes from the same word we get the word discipleship. The emphasis on discipleship in Greek is not formal school learning, but rather fellowship with the teacher. Discipleship involved two principles. First, it meant that the disciples had fellowship with their teacher. They lived with him as Jesus’ disciples lived with Him. Second, disciples carried on the tradition of their teacher. After he died they taught the same things that he did.
As a church, our primary time of formal teaching is on Sunday mornings. However, we all should be in faith-based learning relationships. This can happen on a small group level where we learn from each other or in one on one discipling relationships. This should also be happening in our homes where we talk about biblical principles with family, roommates or friends. Who are the people who you have been able to learn about God from? Who have you been able to help learn about God? Ask God to grow these relationships in your life and to help you continue learning.