Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 January 2021 Romans 8:18.

Romans 8:18.     For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

One more time to celebrate the Lord’s Sabbath friends; one more time! Oh we’re going to do it thousands of times before this life is over, and we’re going to enjoy it every time, because we know it’s the Lord’s desire for us to celebrate it and be happy as we do it to praise and bless His awesome name! So, let’s begin, as always, with raising up our voices in sacrificial praise to our wonderful Creator. 

And the song we’re going to sing today is one of our all time favourites, written by popular 19thcentury blind hymn writer Fanny Crosby, with her friend Phoebe Palmer Knapp adding the music. The year was 1873, and the hymn was ‘Blessed Assurance!’ Oh yeh friends, that’s certainly going to make for a rocking good time. Why? 

Because as one web site says: ‘Each and every day we sing praises to His name. We are thankful forall of the blessings that He bestows upon us. The lyrics of the classic hymn ‘Blessed Assurance’ is the perfect way to worship. And when you hear the story behind the hymn, you will be even more in awe of His amazing grace. Thank you, Jesus, for dying for our sins!’  

We don’t have time to relate Fanny’s entire story, so a synopsis will have to do. (smile) Born in 1820 of Puritan ancestry in New York, she had an eye infection as a baby, and after a quack doctor placed hot poultices on her inflamed eyelids, she became blind. Then her father became ill and died a few months later, so her mother Mercy went to work as a maid, leaving her grandmother Eunice to raise her. And it was Eunice’s faith and direction and teaching that brought Fanny to her destiny. 

Apparently the grandmother went so far as to vividly describe the physical world to Fanny. Then at 12 she entered the New York School for the Blind, and the rest is History; she ended up teaching there for 23 years, writing numerous poems and hymns. It’s reputed that one evening Phoebe was visiting Fanny, and after playing a melody, she asked Fanny what it sounded like, and Fanny responded, “Blessed Assurance, Jesus is mine.” And they went on to write the song.  So who says our magnificent and magnanimous God doesn’t work in mysterious ways eh, going to great lengths to get us to worship and praise Him! 

Now let’s worship Him with sincere hearts, strong voices, and plenty emotion, meaning each word we speak – sorry, we joyfully sing. On four: one, two, three, four. ‘Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine! Heir of salvation, purchase of God, Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood (Chorus: This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long; This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long.) 

Perfect submission, perfect delight, Visions of rapture now burst on my sight; Angels, descending, bring from above Echoes of mercy, whispers of love. (Chorus…) Perfect submission, all is at rest, I in my Savior am happy and blest, Watching and waiting, looking above, Filled with His goodness, lost in His love. (Chorus: This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long; This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long…. Praising my Savior all the day long )’ 

Oh friends, how can we not praise our wonderful Saviour Jesus Christ all day long after all that He’s done for us eh? It would be a most criminal and unforgiveable act on our part. It’s a good thing that He’s so forgiving though, and still LOVES us and thinks good thoughts towards us even when we are not obedient. And He does give us a blessed assurance of the divine glory to come with Him in eternity. Now we don’t have time nor space to go through all the neat Bible references in the hymn, so we’ll just check out a few. 

When it talks about ‘heir of salvation,’ listen to this most reassuring scripture. The words of Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are children of God: And if children, then heirs, heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ, if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.’ (Rom. 8:16-18) 

Yes friends, what a glorious day that will be when we are reunited with Christ as joint-heirs of the Father! Mama Yo! Will there ever be rejoicing in heaven…and we should be doing the same on earth right now too, because Jesus told us to be of good cheer down here despite our troubles, since He had conquered the world through His selfless sacrifice on the cross, His resurrection and ascension. (John 16:33) 

And re ‘born of the Spirit,’ listen to Jesus’ words to Nicodemus. ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.’ (John 3:5-6) And glory be, we are born of the Spirit by association with Christ my people! 

And we’ll end with this most important point, ‘Washed in His blood.’ Ah mih people, that’s perhaps the most important aspect of it all, being washed in the blood of Christ. Why, you ask? First off, Hebrews 9:22 tells us: ‘And almost all things are by the law purged (cleansed) with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.’ That’s for sure my brethren, only through the shedding of blood can sins be forgiven. That’s why Christ had to go to the cross and shed His blood in our stead. 

Then 1 John 1:7, tells us: ‘the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.’ Oh my fellow believers, Christ was the ONLY sinless soul around, the ONLY lamb without blemish, that’s why the Lord had no choice but to sacrifice Him if He wanted to set us free from sin. Only the best was good enough for us! Wow! 

And we’ll close with these wonderful words from Revelation. ‘And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten (born) of the dead, and the prince of (ruler over) the kings of the earth. Unto him that LOVED us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (Rev. 1:5-6) 

Yes friends, to Christ be the glory for His great sacrifice on our behalf…and also to the Father who engineered it, even to the point of breaking His own heart. If that doesn’t tell us how much He LOVES us, then I don’t know what will nuh. Much LOVE!

…if believers in Christ…are not reassured by His message…then something’s seriously wrong with their faith… 

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