Today’s Old Testament chronological reading is in Job 21 and 22.
The Psalms/ Proverbs reading is in Psalm 17.
The New Testament reading is in Matthew 13.
Hebrew root words.
Receive, please, instruction from His mouth, and lay up His words in your heart. Job 22:22
They have closed up their fat hearts … Psa 17:10
Job 22:22 To receive. Strong’s H3947 laqach; simply, to receive that which has been given.
Job 22:22 To lay up. Strong’s H7760 שום shuwm, a primitive root meaning, “to appoint.” The 3-letter root is shin + vav + mem.
shin ש = two front teeth, thus sharp, press, eat, two, again
vav ו = the tent peg, thus add, secure, hook
mem מ, ם = the water, thus chaos, mighty, blood
The story: The breath (shin, as that which passes through the teeth) which hooks (vav) water (mem, in the form of vapor) with it and is expelled from the body to the outside. In just this way a man’s character is outwardly expressed from that which is laid up within his heart.
Psa 17:10 Fat heart. Strong’s H2459 cheleb, a concrete noun meaning, “fat;” from an unused, unnamed root meaning, “to be fat.” The 3-letter root of the noun is chet + lamed + bet.
chet ח = the wall, thus outside, divide, half
lamed ל = the shepherd’s staff, thus teach, yoke, to, bind
bet ב = the house, thus house, household, family, in, within
The story: To have an enclosure surrounding (chet) the heart (lamed + bet). A spiritual fat heart is the same as a closed heart. It is walled off, and the Word of God cannot enter. A fat heart is death to the spiritual man just as a fat heart is death to the physical man.
Mat 13:18-23, Parable of the Sower Chiastic Structure.
1A) 3:18-19A Hear, then, the parable of the farmer. When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and DOESN’T UNDERSTAND IT;
1B) 13:19B The evil one comes and SNATCHES AWAY that which has been sown in his heart (i.e., THE WORD);
1C) 13:19C This is what was SOWN BY THE ROADSIDE;
1D) 13:20 What was sown on the rocky places, this is he who hears the word and IMMEDIATELY WITH JOY RECEIVES IT;
CENTRAL AXIS) 13:21A YET HE HAS NO ROOT IN HIMSELF, BUT ENDURES FOR A WHILE;
2D) 13:21B When oppression or persecution arises because of the word, IMMEDIATELY HE STUMBLES;
2C) 13:22A What was SOWN AMONG THE THORNS;
2B) 13:22B This is he who hears the word, but the cares of this age and the deceitfulness of riches CHOKE THE WORD, and he becomes unfruitful;
2A) 13:23 What was sown on the good ground, this is he who hears the word and UNDERSTANDS IT, who most certainly bears fruit and produces, some one hundred times as much, some sixty, and some thirty.
What does it mean to receive His Word? We take it in, and accept it. We believe it is true. We believe it is true and put our trust in it, which is to say, we put our trust in Him who spoke it and proclaimed it a true Word, even when things get difficult as they got for Job. We don’t reject it or cast it away from us, because of momentary affliction which seems to disprove its veracity (seems is important – look it up!). The key is to understand it, and the key to understanding it, is to cultivate the depth of soil in our hearts. We do this by feeding our heart on it daily as we feed our body on food daily.
Listen, I am a teacher of the Word and so I appreciate that gift the Spirit has given to the Body. But do not consider watching the words of a teacher on You Tube or reading the words of a teacher – even these words – the same as reading or hearing the actual Word of God for yourself, straight from the Bible. His Words are powerful, living, active, and life-giving; my words are just man’s words. A teacher’s words on You Tube are just man’s words no matter how anointed. A teacher’s words cannot rise to the level of the living and active Word of God. We cannot cultivate depth of soil on man’s words, but on God’s Word only.
Then we water our hearts with even more Word of God (the Bible again), asking the Holy Spirit, the Teacher (who is poured out onto our hearts, as rain is poured out onto the ground to cause it to spring forth growth) to help us understand it. It is admittedly a process. There are some things in the Word of God that I am only just now beginning to understand … that is after reading it year by year for over 50 years! Being faithful to cultivate the soil of our hearts will pay off, just as it pays off in the soil of our gardens. It takes a persistent attitude of receiving what is written as true, and storing it up in the heart, to cultivate that rich, loamy soil which bears fruit.
The good news is – you are in charge of the state of your heart! If it is stony, or shallow, or filled with thorns, you do not have to leave it that way. You can change it!
Links to previous studies.
Job 21 Chiastic structure
Job 21 and 22, The wrath reserved for the wicked
Psalm 17 Chiastic structure
Psalm 17, The two paths
Psalm 17, Paths and cycles
Matthew 13, The seed of the Word
Matthew 13, Those who practice Law-lessness
Matthew 13, The parables of the kingdom