Today’s Scrip-Bit   28 April 2023   John 10:11 & 14.

John 10:11 & 14.         I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth His life for the sheep…I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. 

And finally it’s Friday…and that enormous worldwide shout has gone out: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday! And at long last the weekend is here! Glory Be!’ Yes friends, that last day of the work week which we all so look forward to is finally here. And what difference does it make eh? Why are we so glad, so overjoyed to see it eh? Because it reminds us of the two days off work that we have coming up.  And since work is not a favourite action of this lazy, entitled, lack-of-work-ethic society, just knowing that for the next two days, without a boss constantly looking over our shoulders, we can do whatever we want, that feeling of freedom just raises our adrenaline level. 

But please friends, let’s not forget that if you’re a serious believer in Jesus Christ, that one of those two days is set aside for gathering in worship, praise and fellowship, to give thanks to Almighty God and receive His blessings and spiritual renewal, and to generally rest and recuperate, which means you only have one real day to do as you please. (smile) But true believers in Christ don’t mind that, because they know that their Lord and Saviour is always with them, helping them, LOVING them, keeping them safe, comforting them and all the other things a good caretaker or shepherd would do for His flock. 

And that’s why Jesus could adamantly declare (yesss!!!): ‘I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth His life for the sheep…I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.’ (John 10:11 & 14) Ah mih people, with those two statements Jesus tells us all that we really need to know about Him. He is intimately acquainted with His sheep, knows them by name, and He will give His life, allow His sinless blood to be shed for His sheep. Those are possibly the two most important aspects of a shepherd’s duties; to know His sheep and to go to the ends of the earth for them, which is exactly what Jesus did for us. 

And yuh know what my faithful brethren, Jesus doings were not last minute, hurriedly put together actions, but actions which had been pre-ordained from the beginning of time, and shared with man through the prophet Isaiah, who let it be known, loud and clear, far and wide: ‘Behold, the Lord God will come with strong hand (in strength), and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work (wage) before him. He will feed his flocks like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.’ (Is. 40:10-11) 

Yes friends, all this stuff about Jesus was planned a long time ago, and finally manifested, or put in place, when the Lord judged the time right for it. And since He is the Creator and Controller of the universe, with thoughts and ways much higher than ours, He knows what is best for us all. That’s why it makes no sense whatsoever to reject Jesus and His wonderful free grace that’s embodied in salvation, through His redeeming death and glorious resurrection. 

And Peter tells it very well, when he writes. ‘For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile (deceit) found in his mouth: Who, when reviled, reviled not again (in return): when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes (wounds) ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop (Overseer) of your souls.’ (1 Pet. 2:21-25) 

Oh my people, it could not have been put any better! Jesus took the bit in His mouth and did exactly what a shepherd is supposed to do: die protecting his flock! And if you don’t think that Jesus knows the sheep in His flock, then listen to Bruh Paul in his second letter to Timothy. First, he admits his total trust in Christ. ‘Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles. For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against (until ) that day.’ (2 Tim. 1:11-12) 

Ah friends, do we have such a monumental trust in Christ Jesus? We ought to, if we intend to live seriously for Him and do His earthly work. Then Bruh Paul acknowledges Jesus’ comment in our Bit. ‘Nevertheless, the foundation of God standeth sure, having his seal. The Lord knoweth them that are his. And let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.’ (2 Tim. 2:19) 

Then, here is this perfect closing scripture from Hebrews. ‘Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect (complete) in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.’ (Heb. 13:20-21) That’s such a beautiful scripture passage my fellow saints, one that truly encapsulates all that we’ve spoken of today. 

So now, let’s go to the throne of grace, through our Friday Chant, pay our respects and ask for divine intervention in our earthly affairs. Altogether: ‘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 if we truly desire the Lord’s help, then we now have to clean up our act, keep our promises, and do as He desires. Much LOVE!

…trust and obey…there is no other way…to be happy in Jesus…than to trust and obey… 

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