Today’s Scrip-Bit   30 December 2022 Colossians 3:14.

Colossians 3:14.       And above all these things put on charity (LOVE), which is the bond of perfectness.

And so we come to Friday…and the shouts of TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!’ are even louder than usual, because this is another long weekend, and a more party going one too; New Year’s Eve! What a time of celebration the end of 2022 will be! It’s been a tough, unexpected, uncontrollable year, but we’ll make sure and close it off with joyful expectations for 2023. (smile) But please my people, don’t expect 2023 to be any better than 2022 unless we work to make it better. It’s going to be another tough year, but hopefully not as tough as this past one. 

And it’s only going to improve if we believers do as Bruh Paul warned the Colossians way back when. As we said yesterday, we have to actively put on the new man, leave all our old behaviour behind and put our sincere trust in Christ Jesus: ‘Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond (slave) nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.’ (Col. 3:11) Yes friends, that’s the attitude we believers need to adopt in this new year. 

And as always, after giving us the theory, Bruh Paul gives us the practical lessons. (smile) In this case, he says: ‘Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies (tender mercies), kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering (patience); Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.’ (Col. 3:12-13) 

Oh my people, that is the only way our lives and that of Christ’s church will ever improve, regardless of what kind of year we have! We absolutely need to take on those virtues and qualities that lead to peace and ‘bowels of mercies’ or heartfelt compassion. None of us has arrived, or become so mature that we don’t need these lessons. 

And thus, the scholars explain: ‘As the believer is developing these virtues, he must be forbearing and forgiving toward his fellow church member. For his Christian brother is also in the process of acquiring the virtues of verse 12 and therefore retains some flaws, deficiencies, and weaknesses. Hence the need of forbearance and forgiveness.’ 

And that’s all so true my brethren! We all still have flaws and some residue from the old man; therefore we all need to have patience and forgiveness towards each other as we all are in the growing and maturing process of Christian living. Without that forbearance and forgiveness, it will all fall back into the shambles it currently is! And please remember how Christ forgave us! That alone should encourage us to be patient with and forgiving to others! Now that’s not all, for Bruh Paul continues the lesson in putting on the new man. (smile) ‘And above all these things put on charity (LOVE), which is the bond of perfectness.’ (Col. 3:14) 

And is it ever! Here’s how the scholars explain that verse. ‘Charity is LOVE, here called the bond of perfectness. LOVE is the crowning grace completing the list of virtues required for perfectness or spiritual maturity. As a “bond” it binds all other virtues together in harmony and unity.’ Wow! And it’s the gospel truth! No wonder we say that LOVE makes the world go round! And the lack of LOVE in our world today is what’s making it not go round as smoothly as it ought. 

Therefore, in Bruh Paul’s words: ‘And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.’ (Col. 3:15) Yes friends, ‘the peace of God is the harmony and concord created by God among His people. And when that rules in our hearts, it means that whatever course of action that brings peace and harmony is the course to be taken by disagreeing believers.’ Then too, Bruh Paul highly recommends: ‘Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.’ (Col. 3:16) 

Oh what wonderful advice my faithful brethren! And the scholars tell us that ‘When believers are forbearing, forgiving (vs. 13), and LOVING (vs. 14) toward one another, when peace reigns among God’s people (vs. 15), then the church is fertile soil for the blessings produced by the word of Christ.’ There’s so much truth in that my people! And it’s one of the main reasons why today’s church is so infertile; too much petty bickering, envy and jealousy, which makes for a divided and therefore weak church! 

Meanwhile, Bruh Paul closes this section with these words. ‘And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.’ (Col. 3:17) That’s the clincher my fellow saints! Doing all we do in Christ’s name, with thanks to our heavenly Father! Without that, nothing will work! And the scholars reinforce that by saying: ‘The beneficial influence produced by the indwelling word of Christ is not only to affect public and private worship (v.16), but it is also to control all areas of Christian life.’ 

Glory be my people! That tells us that the Christian life is a complete entity in itself. It does have different parts, but all must be lived out before one can claim perfectness or spiritual maturity. And that’s what we’re aiming for in the upcoming year of 2023 my fellow saints; a heightened maturity! We might not get to be perfect, but we must improve our level of Christ-like behaviour, if our world is to become any better than it currently is. Matter fix! 

Now, let’s go home declaring (yeah!!!) our Friday Chant asking the Lord for His divine help to do all that we said needs to be done. As one voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the confusion and anxiety caused by the pandemic and our many other serious problems. We can’t fix them on our own Lord, so we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat the simmering unrest in our land. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, without further serious setbacks. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to return backsliders to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a new flock of believers, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic, the bubbling discontent and dissatisfaction in our land, as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, wake up and smell it sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And all our pleading will be useless, unless we get serious and do what we know we need to do! Much LOVE!

…one can only be a new man…by divesting oneself of the old…and putting on the new… 

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