Today’s Scrip-Bit   20 July 2022 John 13:35.

John 13:35.      By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE to one another.

Come get to Wednesday friends, the leveller of our work week. Yes, by Wednesday we ought to be in full swing, in total work mode, going great guns! (smile) Ah, but how many of us really get into full work mode these days eh, with the broken work system caused by the pandemic and all the other problems we’re currently facing? 

Not as many as it ought to have, for the fairly steady world that we knew a few years ago, no longer exists. Everything is now in upheaval, fragmented, one isn’t sure whether one is coming or going., we’re all trying to figure out where our future lies. Some of us are even standing still, notwithstanding those of us who have disastrously fallen through the many holes and cracks in the system. One thing is sure though; our world will never be the same again. 

And what’s interesting and very disturbing is that throughout the worldwide pandemic, greed, selfishness and warfare never took a break, in fact they have intensified. The rich keep getting richer, the poor keep getting poorer, our world keeps falling apart, and more power-hungry dictators are being exalted every day! Instead of the pandemic bringing us together, it sadly forced us apart, brought out some of our worst traits. 

I tell you friends, the devil is strong in this world, and if we don’t get up and fight him mano-a-mano, with all the tools, all the armour of our Christian faith, he will eventually have all of us eating out of his hands. Now, that’s not to frighten us, but to warn us. For when all over the world we have the same basic problems and we keep drawing further apart, rather than coming closer together to try and solve them, when supposed Christians are fighting supposed Christians, then things surely are in bad shape. 

Note, I said supposed Christians, for if we are constantly fighting each other then we don’t belong to Christ and don’t deserve His name. We obviously have forgotten, or simply chosen to ignore His very important words. ‘If ye LOVE me, keep my commandments.’ (John 14:15) And what was His commandment, you ask? ‘A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have loved you, that ye also LOVE one another.’ (John 13:34) 

Yes my people, those who LOVE each other aren’t constantly at war with each other. And some of us might be wondering why Jesus even bothered to give us that commandment, but it was very important, because as He further says: ‘By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE to one another.’ (John 13:35) 

It’s simple friends, Jesus’ trademark is LOVE, and if His supposed followers don’t show LOVE, especially to each other, then they are not truly His followers. We’re just a bunch of ingrates, hypocrites and iniquity workers, parading, or rather masquerading under the façade of Christ! And that’s totally unacceptable. 

Oh my bredrin, not only did Jesus teach us that LOVE for God and each other are the main priorities in our lives, but so did others. Like Bruh Paul and John. In Bruh Paul’s letter to the Thessalonians, when talking about immoral conduct and the purity necessary in a Christian’s walk, he said: ‘For God hath not called us unto uncleanness,  but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth (rejects), despiseth (rejects) not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his Holy Spirit. 

But as touching (concerning) brotherly LOVE ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to LOVE one another. And indeed ye do it toward all the brethren which are in Macedonia: but we beseech you, brethren, that ye increase more and more; And that ye study to be quiet (aspire to live a quiet life), and to do (mind) your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you; That ye may walk honestly (properly) toward them that are without (outside), and that ye may have lack of nothing.’ (1 Thess. 4:7-12) 

Yuh see there mih people, although the Thessalonians were doing a decent enough job of showing LOVE in action, Bruh Paul was still encouraging them to get even better at it. To mind their business and develop a work ethic that would allow them to earn a decent living. All of those virtues are sadly lacking in today’s society. With the advent of almost instantaneous communication, we’ve become the biggest liars and gossipmongers the world has ever seen. And don’t talk about the work ethic aspect, because that’s almost non-existent. But yet we claim to be Christians! Heifer Dust! 

And if you don’t believe me, then listen to John in his first epistle. He writes: ‘And hereby we do know that we know him (Jesus), if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the LOVE of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also to walk, even as he walked.’ (1 John 2:3-6) 

And how did Jesus walk, you ask? Listen to Him. ‘If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my LOVE; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his LOVE.’(John 15:10) Jesus only did what His Father commanded. And if by now you have not realized that the master template of LOVE is basic obedience, then let me tell you, IT IS! 

Now listen to John from his second epistle, where he writes to a lady and her family: ‘And now I beseech thee, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment unto thee, but that which we had from the beginning, that we LOVE one another. And this is LOVE, that we walk after (according to) his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.’ (2 John 5-6) 

And I like how the scholars explain that last verse. ‘For some, LOVE has little to do with obedience. Yet John, following Jesus, stresses that to LOVE is to obey. As one of Jesus’ closest disciples, John would have heard the Master raise the question, “And why call ye me Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luke 6:46)’ 

Now that’s a very good question. Why call Jesus Lord when we don’t do as He desires of us eh? I’ll leave that for us to ponder and answer in our own time and manner though. (smile) Instead, let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. 

Altogether now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And if by chance you’ve forgotten, let me remind you that if we endure to the very end, then that promised future will be even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine. So please, let’s hold on to that nuh, and endure right down to the very end! The rewards will be well worth it! Much LOVE!

…no group of God’s creations…be they man, beast or organism…can survive chaos…without obedience to a central tenet…   

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