Charles H. Spurgeon gives wise counsel to Christians in general, and to Bible students and pastors in particular. This wisdom pertains to what is probably a lost biblical and spiritual discipline in the church today–the practice of meditation. Meditation on God and His word was the practice of the Psalmists (Psa. 1:2; 19:14; 49:3; 104:34; 119:15, 48; 143:5), and should we not think that such devotion to meditation is part and parcel to the result of the compiled beauty and excellence of the Psalms?! Let us then consider Spurgeon’s wise counsel in this lost discipline, taken from his sermon entitled “Meditation On God”:
Do not imagine that the meditative man is necessarily lazy; contrariwise, he lays the best foundation for useful works. He is not the best student who reads the most books, but he who meditates the most upon them; he shall not learn most of divinity who hears the greatest number of sermons, but he who meditates the most devoutly upon what he does hear; nor shall he be so profound a scholar who takes down ponderous volumes one after the other, as he who, reading little by little, precept upon precept, and line upon line, digests what he learns, and assimilates each sentiment to his heart by meditation–receiving the word first into his understanding, and afterward receiving the spirit of the thing into his own soul. When he reads the letters with his eye it is merely mechanical, but that he may read them to his own heart he retires to meditate.
Again, meditation is the machine in which the raw material of knowledge is converted to the best uses. Let me compare it to a wine-press. By reading, and research, and study we gather the grapes; but it is by meditation we press out the juice of those grapes, and obtain the wine. How is it that many men who read very much know very little?… Instead of putting facts into the press of meditation, and fermenting them till they can draw out inferences, they leave them to rot and perish. They extract none of the sweet juice of wisdom from the precious fruits of the vine-tree. A man who reads only a tenth part as much, but who takes the grapes of Eschol [valley in Israel] that he gathers, and squeezes them by meditation, will learn more in a week than your pedant will in a year, because he muses on what he reads.