Today’s Scrip-Bit   30 April 2022 Proverbs 18:21.

Proverbs 18:21.      Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that LOVE it shall eat the fruit thereof.

Saturday…at long last Saturday! And no work to go to; that means no traffic to fight, no annoying co-workers or ignorant bosses to put up with! Blessed be Saturday! And the weather seems good too; sunny and getting warmer. So, all in all, we seem to be in for a fine Saturday. (smile) But let’s get right to what we do here on Saturdays; that’s review the quotes our friend Anselm sends us in the past week, to see how they fit into our Christian walk of faith. 

And the first one makes this dramatic statement: ‘Where there is LOVE there is life.’ Now I guess that’s quite true if you take it in the context that ‘God is LOVE.’ John says it quite clearly in his first epistle. (1 John 4:8) And if we recognize that God is also the giver of life, as the Good Book tells us: ‘And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.’ (Gen. 2:7) Therefore, under those circumstances, where there is the LOVE of God, the possibility of life seriously abounds. (smile) 

And the next quote imparts much wisdom, when it says: ‘Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something.’ That’s oh so true! And we have several warnings on that subject from Cousin Sol both as the Proverbs writer and the Preacher. Listen up, as he says in Proverbs: ‘The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion (legacy) of fools.’ (Prov. 3:35) And also from Proverbs: ‘A fool uttereth all his mind (vents all his feelings): but a wise man keepeth it in (holds it back) till afterward.’ (Prov. 29:11) 

Then there are these marvellous words of Cousin Sol as the Preacher in Ecclesiastes. ‘Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon the earth: therefore let thy words be few. For a dream cometh through the multitude of business (effort or activity): and a fool’s voice is known by multitude of words.’ (Eccl. 5:2-3) It couldn’t be put any clearer than that friends. Fools are known by their many words. And that takes us right back to Proverbs, where it says that ‘Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace (keeps silent) is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding (is considered wise).’ (Prov. 17:28) 

Now that segues very nicely into the next quote. ‘False words are not only evil in themselves, but they infect the soul with evil.’ That’s gospel truth my brethren. And Cousin Sol also has a whole lot of wise sayings on that subject. Amongst them being these: ‘Bread of deceit (bread gained by deceit) is sweet to a man; but afterward his mouth shall be filled with gravel.’ (Prov. 20:17) Yes, whatever we gain through deceitful means usually turns sour on us afterward. Telling us that deceitful methods don’t pay. 

Then there is this: ‘Better is the poor that walketh in his integrity, than he that is perverse in his lips, and is a fool.’ (Prov. 19:1) And this one takes the cake: ‘Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that LOVE it shall eat the fruit thereof.’ (Prov. 18:21) Oh my people, nowadays we talk so much, and talk so much foolishness, what we know nothing about, that there’s a lot to come back as a boomerang and bite us in the rear! 

So that’s why our enemy, the devil, Satan, Beelzebub, whatever you choose to call him deals in false words, in lies and deceit. He wants to infect our souls with evil. He wants to turn us away from Jesus, away from the straight and narrow path that leads to eternal life, to follow his evil and ungodly wide and destructive path that leads to death and damnation. That’s why Jesus describes him as ‘The thief that cometh not, but to (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy; I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10) 

Remember now that Jesus only deals in truth, not falsehood. That’s why He could confidently say: ‘If ye continue (abide) in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.’ (John 8:32) Oh my fellow saints, truth is the elixir of our very existence, and it comes only from Jesus! He is the very personification of the word! 

And that brings us to this next quote: ‘Excellence is not a gift, but a skill that takes practice. We do not act rightly because we are excellent, in fact we achieve excellence by acting rightly.’ Mama Mia! How right that is! We are not naturally or automatically excellent at anything. Like everything in this life, we only become good or excellent by practice. As the old saying goes; ‘Practice makes perfect.’ And as a Christian, a believer in Christ Jesus, it’s of the utmost importance that we become excellent in all aspects of life, as He is excellent. 

He expects it of His followers, for an organization is only as good as its weakest link. And we can only become excellent followers of Jesus if we live right, live the way that He desires of us. The same thing goes for the enemy: we can live excellently for him if we faithfully practice evil. But in whatever it is, we will never become excellent, unless and until we keep doing it over and over. 

And this last quote is also an eye-opener. It says: ‘LOVE has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get – only with what you are expecting to give – which is everything.’ And as followers of Jesus, we are expected to give a lot, but in so doing, we also receive a lot from our Lord and Saviour. He sacrificed His sinless life for us on the cross of Calvary, bringing forgiveness of sins, reconciliation to God, salvation and eternal life to anyone who sincerely believes in Him. So, when He says: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ (Acts 20:35) He knows a whole lot about giving! 

And it’s interesting to note, per the scholars that ‘Here alone is a quotation from Christ that is not recorded in the Gospels.’ Imagine an important pronouncement like that not being recorded by any of the gospel writers nuh. Makes you wonder if it’s true at all. But there’s no doubt about it, because Jesus was all about giving, about sacrificing without looking for any rewards, and so ought we to be as loyal and true followers. 

So friends, let’s go home today, on this sunny Saturday morn, the last day of April 2022, with a such joy in our hearts from all the wonderful things that we’ve received from Jesus, that we now want to share it all very generously with those around us. That’s the good life; the abundant life Christ died for us to have! Much LOVE!

 joyful giving…expresses our happiness and contentment…found in the promises of God… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8    

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