Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 March 2020 Hebrews 11:6.

Hebrews 11:6.    ​But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is (He exists), and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
 
Oh friends, the birds are singing their Hallelujah Chorus… but sadly there’s no one out and about to hear their beautiful song of praise and thanksgiving to their omnipotent Creator and ever-generous Provider! And Jesus made it quite clear about the birds when He said in the Sermon on the Mount: ‘Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?’ (Matt. 6:26). 

I guess in the big picture the answer to that question might be yes, but in relation to our reactions to our heavenly Father, the answer is certainly no! That’s because we don’t worship and praise and give as much thanks to our Creator and Provider as they do, or as we should. We seem to feel that He doesn’t do anything for us, that all we have and have achieved have come through our own efforts. But that’s not true, for remember Bruh Paul assured us that ‘my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.’ (Phil. 4:19) And He will…if we follow His Word and Will. 

But instead, we foolishly still insist in going our own way. We foolishly shout: ‘Yippee! We have free will, so we will use it as we please!’ But what good has that done us eh? None whatsoever! For from the day Eve bowed to the duplicity of the wily ole enemy, Satan, he has used that free will to dupe us into doing his desires instead of the Lord’s! And because of it, we are engaged in constant strife, resentment, anger, war and a host of other negative actions and activities. Because we refuse to listen, as per the Bill Gates warning yesterday, we’re caught up in another germ attack, this one seeming to be the most pervasive and widespread yet. 

Ah mih people, what’s wrong with our minds eh? Why have we been caught flat-footed by Aids, Sars, Ebola and now the Coronavirus eh, when there’s enough brain power, wealth and technology in the world to either prevent them, or stop them sooner in their tracks? I guess because we concentrate on the things of the world too much and not enough on the things of God. Too many of us apparently don’t take Jesus’ words as seriously as we should. When He says earlier on in the Sermon on the Mount: 

‘No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and LOVE the other; or else he will hold (be loyal) to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (riches, material things). Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for (do not worry about) your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat (food), and the body than raiment (clothes)?’ (Matt. 6:24-25) Yes my faithful and precious people of God. Life certainly is more than food and clothing. 

And that’s when Jesus spoke about the fowls of the air. Then asked: ‘Which of you by taking thought (worrying) can add one cubit unto his stature (height)?’ (Matt.6:27) And the answer is not a single one of us! So Jesus continues: ‘And why take ye thought for raiment (do you worry about clothes)? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed (clothed) like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe (clothes) the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith.’ (Matt.6:28-30)

 Oh friends, we do not serve a stupid or unconcerned  God! Whatever He’s made, He will take care of! That’s all Jesus is trying to point out to us. So if He looks after the birds and flowers so wonderfully, and they are low down the totem pole, why wouldn’t He look after us, His children even better eh? But the problem seems to stem from Jesus’ last words above: ‘O ye of little faith.’ That seems to be the tantamount problem with God’s children; a sad lack of sufficient faith. 

And the Good Book says it right up front: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is (He exists), and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ That’s what it’s all about friends; belief and faith! We talk a lot about having faith, but when the time comes to put it into action we falter and fail. And that’s exactly why Jesus directed us in the Sermon on the Mount: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow (do not worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:33-34) 

He wasn’t joking my brethren. He was quite serious. We ought to concern ourselves first of all with spiritual things, make God our first priority, and then He will give us all the material things we need. For as the scholars so wisely say: ‘Where God guides, He provides.’ And that’s the gospel truth my people…but we must have sufficient faith to live it. And hopefully, this dreadful time in which we’ve found ourselves, will have a lot more people sincerely crying out to God for help, and will help to build the faith of those of us who already believe. Now let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!) our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know of our serious and faithful position in Christ. 

As one, in strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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 is that ever something to look forward to friends: the day when there’ll be no more pain, sorrow, sickness, death or tears, just eternal joy and life with Jesus! Much LOVE!

…he who has ears to hear…let him hear…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 October 2019 Matthew 6:25.

Matthew 6:25.    ​Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for (do not worry about) your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat (food), and the body than raiment (clothing)?
 

What a way we’ve reached Wednesday, the hump day of our work week, rather quickly! (smile) And I know that many spirits are now relaxed and looking forward to the weekend. But friends, let’s not look too far ahead, for many things, both good and bad, can happen in the interim time. So please, let’s concentrate on today, and do like Bruh David said: ‘This is the day, the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24)

That’s the best way to live people, taking one day at a time, and enjoying it too, because God has made the wise decision to only give us one day at a time to live. That’s hard enough to handle, so why bother ourselves too much with the upcoming days eh? As Jesus said: ‘Take therefore no thought for the morrow (therefore do not worry about tomorrow); for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:34) 

Yeh mih people, as the scholars explain: ‘When our priority is spiritual, God will take care of the material, for where God guides, He provides. We need not even worry about tomorrow, for sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. This means that each day has its own troubles and challenges to be responsibly handled, without worrying about the hypothetical problems that could arise tomorrow.’

And that brings us to some truths about worry from Pastor Corville Peters of the ‘At the Cross Live’ Television Programme. He says: ‘Worry doesn’t take sorrow out of tomorrow, but it does take the joy out of today. Worry pulls tomorrow’s clouds over today’s sunshine. Worry doesn’t help us get ready for tomorrow because God only gives us strength for today.’ 

Wow! What words of indisputable truth my fellow saints in Christ! Worry doesn’t help us at all, it just drags us further down into the mire of life. But unfortunately a whole heap of us nowadays, Christians included, go to the devil’s life school of worry, and worry about everything, resulting in no peace and joy in our lives.

It’s true that our world has become a rather formidable place to live securely and without worry, but if you’re a true believer in Jesus Christ, then your worries should be at a minimum after hearing this awesome advice from our Lord and Saviour. ‘Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for (do not worry about) your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat (food), and the body than raiment (clothing)?’ And it is indeed my people! 

And I like how the scholars explain that verse. ‘6:25. Jesus now deals with the equally dangerous tendency of those who have few possessions: worry! Take no thought (Gr. me merimnao) means “Do not be anxious.” This word means to be so disturbed about material needs that we distrust God and are distracted from faithfully doing His will.

Anxious care is the direct opposite of faith. Therefore, even the poor are not to worry needlessly about what they should eat, drink, or wear. The question Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? indicates that inner mental stability must come from the spirit of a man and not from outward physical provisions. To set one’s heart on material possessions or to worry about the lack of them is to live in perpetual insecurity and to deprive oneself of the spiritual blessings of God.’ 

Mama Mia! What words of awesome truth my brethren! Yes, I know it’s hard to not have, and yet to be comfortable and satisfied, but that’s the way it is in Christ’s kingdom. Remember how after our Bit, He points out all the wonderful aspects of nature and its mindless creatures; how they grow and thrive through God’s help, and that we’re much more important to God than them, so why would He not look after us just as well eh? He knows what we need better than we do. (Matt. 6:26-32)

The problem though is that we have to stop worrying about our material needs and possessions, and instead: ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness: and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) Yeh friends, if we make God our Number One Priority, put Him FIRST in our lives, then all that we need will be given unto us. Note, it doesn’t say all that we WANT, but all that we NEED! Remember what we said above? ‘Where God guides, He provides.’ 

So please, let’s stop all the needless worrying that’s killing our spiritual selves, holding back our maturity in Christ, and instead, concentrate on seeking God and His righteousness, for He’s also promised, that if we seek Him diligently, we will find Him. Now let’s go home declaring (yeh!) our Wednesday Wail, which let’s the world know of our steadfast and faithful position in Christ Jesus.

As one 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 we stick steadfastly with Jesus, then that future will indeed be glorious, more glorious than we can ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…in Christ’s kingdom…all needs will be met…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 February 2019 Matthew 6:34.

Matthew 6:34.   Take therefore no thought for the morrow (don’t worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for (worry about) the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.

 

Awright friends, it’s Sunday, that great first day of the week that we all know and LOVE! Some of us just like it because we can laze around in it, conveniently using the biblical contention that it’s supposed to be a day of rest. (smile) Meanwhile, to others, it is also a day to get together with fellow believers and celebrate God’s goodness, give Him praise and thanks and exalt His holy name in return for all that’s He done for us! 

And that’s what I’d suggest we all do on this cold Sunday in February; hie thee hither to the Lord’s sanctuary and worship and sing praises to our omnipotent and magnanimous God, hear His awesome Word, and receive His healing power and confidence to face the upcoming week! Now that’s what a Sunday should be all about! 

And as always, we open the proceedings with a song of praise and thanksgiving. Today’s song will be a popular gospel tune written I believe somewhere in the 1970’s by Marijohn Wilkins and Kris Kristofferson; a heartfelt plea to be granted mercy and grace, forgiveness and all that’s necessary to live a righteous life ‘One Day at a Time Sweet Jesus!’ 

So let’s raise the roof of the sanctuary- if there is one – (smile) as we raise our voices to heaven, humbly imploring our heavenly Father to grant our heart’s desire. As one body in Christ now:  (Chorus: One day at a time, sweet Jesus That’s all I’m asking of You Just give me the strength to do every day What I have to do Yesterday’s gone, sweet Jesus And tomorrow may never be mine Lord, help me today Show me the way One day at a time) 

I’m only human, I’m just a woman (man) Help me believe in what I could be And all that I am Show me the stairway That I have to climb Lord, for my sake, teach me to take One day at a time. (Chorus) Oh, do you remember When You walked among men Well, Jesus, You know If You’re looking below It’s worse now, than then, Cheating and stealing, violence and crime So for my sake, teach me to take One day at a time 

(Chorus: One day at a time, sweet Jesus That’s all I’m asking of You Just give me the strength to do every day What I have to do Oh, yesterday’s gone, sweet Jesus And tomorrow may never be mine Lord, help me today Show me the way One day at a time Lord, help me today Show me the way One day at a time One day at a time.’ 

Yeh friends, fortunately or unfortunately, one day at a time is the only way we can live this earthly life and we do need God’s provision to do so successfully. And He is only too eager to provide them for us every day! Remember what Jeremiah says in his Lamentations? ‘It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.’ (Lam.3:22-23) 

 That’s a crucial bit of scripture friends, something we should all pay serious attention to, for just consider what our state would be if the Lord didn’t provide us with new mercies and compassion and LOVE each and every day nuh? Putting it simple and straightforward; crapaud smoke we pipe! That’s for sure! 

But even more important than God’s mercies being available new every morning, is the inescapable fact that we have to do our part to get, to receive them. They just don’t fall in our laps like manna from heaven. Each day that we draw the breath of life, we need to be actively engaged in God’s work and try to live right, to let His will be our top priority. 

And Jesus, who knows best, because that’s exactly what He did in His earthly life – draw inspiration and strength from the Father each and every day through prayer and thanksgiving – gives us this serious and wise advice during His famous Sermon on the Mount. 

‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow (don’t worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for (worry about) the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:33-34) 

 And if we’d only follow those words of wisdom from our High Priest, our Lord and Saviour, our lives would be so much better. It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t make some plans for the future, but today should bear most of our concentration, for we don’t know what will happen tomorrow, we might not even be around, and most likely it will have its own troubles. 

I like how the scholars put it: ‘When our priority is spiritual, God will take care of the material, for where God guides, He provides. We need not even worry about tomorrow, for sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof. This means that each day has its own troubles and challenges to be responsibly handled, without worrying about the hypothetical problems that could arise tomorrow.’ 

So friends, it’s not like we don’t know what we’re supposed to do, but we either don’t believe it, are afraid to do it, or our faith just isn’t strong enough. But whatever the reason why we aren’t making God and today our primary focuses, let’s promise ourselves to change it nuh. 

Let’s go to the source of ALL help, our heavenly Father Himself and pour out our hearts, just like we did in the song above. Remember, He will NEVER turn away anyone who sincerely and humbly comes to Him for help! Much LOVE!

…Lord help me today…show me the way…one day at a time…only one day at a time…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 May 2018 Matthew 10:16.

Matthew 10:16.   Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless (innocent) as doves.

Beautiful! Beautiful! Beautiful! That’s the only way I can describe yesterday friends. It was more of a summer than a spring day, with the heat from the sun radiating somewhere in the mid-twenties, suitably accompanied by a cool, brisk breeze. And today seems like it’s going to be more of the same. Glory be! 

Oh I know you folks who live in the tropics are accustomed to that kind of weather all the time, but we poor northerners have to be thankful and celebrate when we get it, especially after the strange winter weather we’ve just had. (smile) 

But unfortunately all is not wine and roses, for it seems that two misguided men went into a Bombay Bhel Indian Restaurant in my city of Mississauga last night around 10.30 p.m and exploded a crude bomb of projectiles injuring about 15 people, some of them critically. Ah Lord eh! They were obviously well covered from head to foot, so that the video surveillance couldn’t detect them. 

Obviously they had no manly parts, injuring innocent people for whatever foolish reason. I don’t know exactly where this particular restaurant of the chain is located, but it certainly doesn’t feel good when these sorts of things begin happening close to home. We can’t allow those fools to have us live in fear though, so let’s keep on going with God and hope the powers that be catch them soon. 

Now it’s Friday and the workingman is out there lustily singing his lustful song. (smile) ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! And it come quickly this week because was only four days of labour for that greedy and unfair massa. And I know how it burn him to pay us for that holiday, but we do get a break here and there. 

But enough about massa, is the weekend and we time, so let’s get on with enjoying it nuh. And the good weather is providing so many more options for doing that. So eat, drink and party like leggo beasts’ mih people! For who knows whether you’ll be around tomorrow! Hn, Hn! Thank God for Fridays and the weekends yes!’ 

So what do we believers have to say to that eh? Too much leeway, not enough boundaries! It’s only allowing Lucifer to get into our souls and destroy them. And we counter with our Friday Chant: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yeh friends, we always have to be on our p’s and q’s when we live and work for Jesus because there is nothing the enemy likes more than to get into our souls and spoil our witness. That brings us to our Bit, a strange but interesting pronouncement of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ to His disciples. ‘Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless (innocent) as doves.’  

Oh my brethren, to be wise but innocent is not an easy task to accomplish in this evil, very wolfish world! But if Jesus says to do it, then it must be doable and He will give us the wherewithal to do it. 

But Jesus does warn: ‘But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against (to) them and the Gentiles. But when they deliver you up take no thought how or what (do not worry about) what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. 

For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you. And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.’ (Matt.10:17-22) 

Yes faithful believers, we’re living in a very deceitful world and thus need to be very careful of whom we pick as our associates. Now here are some explanations from the scholars. ‘10:17-22. Take no thought means “Do not be anxious.” (See Mark 13:9-13; Luke 12:11-12; 21:12-19) It shall be given you promises that the inner prompting of the Holy Spirit would tell them what to say in each situation they would face. 

For my name’s sake: They would endure great persecution because of their identification with Jesus Christ. But he that endureth to the end shall be saved is a promise of perseverance, not a teaching that salvation may be lost. Rather, it indicates that those who are truly saved will indeed endure to the end.’  

There we have it friends: We will face persecution and discrimination because of our association with Jesus. But we need not worry about what to say or do, because the Holy Spirit that dwells within us will advise us. And we just need to hang in, to truly believe, to persevere in His name right to the end. 

Remember, Jesus has promised never to leave nor forsake us once we stay true to Him, and if we believe, we’ll grab hold of that promise so tightly we’ll never loose it. Much LOVE!

…all we do…must be all for Jesus…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 May 2018 Matthew 6:34.

Matthew 6:34.    Take therefore no thought for the morrow (therefore do not worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.

Oh friends, it’s a glorious Saturday in my neck of the woods! And I have to chuckle as I say that because yesterday was somewhat of a nightmare. Early in the afternoon the weather cleared up, but a wicked windstorm then kicked up its heels, lasting until early evening. I believe that a hurricane force wind is around 110 – 120 km per hour… well this one was at least around 90 km per hour. 

I lay in my bed listening to it caterwaul through the neighbourhood, and it brought to mind the east wind that the Lord stirred up when He gave the Israelites quail because they were tired of angel food; manna. (smile) At some stages I thought it might blow away my roof, so much noise it was making up there. But thankfully, the only damage I’ve seen so far is a piece of my wooden fence blown down into the neighbour’s backyard. Thank You Lord! 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s take a look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, in his sincere efforts to inspire us for a better tomorrow. First up is this insightful quote. ‘Surround yourself with people who get you.’ 

And is that ever important my breddren! The only way to succeed is to have people around you who know what you are about, and are willing to work with you to achieve your ends. We can’t succeed by ourselves, neither with people working against us. That’s why it’s essential to build your inner circle ever so carefully. 

And the second quote says: ‘You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way.’ That’s true too. It reminds me of our Tuesday Mantra. Technically speaking, earth is not our home, we’re only here for a short time, pilgrims passing through. 

Heaven is our real home, where we’ll spend eternity, so that’s where we ought to concentrate a fair amount of our efforts. And besides, how much control do we have over earthly things anyway? Not a whole lot. So why worry and hurry eh? 

And as usual, we’ve saved the best for last. ‘Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.’ And all God’s people said a loud and positive ‘Amen!’ 

Hn, hn! But we still bring forward the crappy stuff we did yesterday, as though it’s an accounting procedure. No friends, to a certain extent we ought to let yesterday rest in peace. It’s come and gone, and there is nothing we can do about it. So only the very important, ongoing stuff should ever be opened on a new day, as we bring a new and fresh level of enthusiasm and perspective to it. 

Jesus warned us: ‘Take therefore no thought for the morrow (therefore do not worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ What wise words from our Lord and Saviour! 

In the same manner, we should not worry about what went on yesterday. Everyday will have enough problems of its own for us to handle, so why add unnecessary stuff eh? That doesn’t mean we should not to be concerned about important, life changing or rearranging things, but generally speaking we upset ourselves with way too much unimportant stuff. 

If we sit down and truly analyze a day’s proceedings, I’m sure we’ll find that half of what we agonized over when it was happening, did not deserve that level of concern. The best way to consistent living is to try and live in the here and now as much as possible. Deal with what’s currently on your plate. 

Have plans, but plans can change like…like…the weather. You know what I really wanted to say, but don’t need the hassle from my female associates. (smile). Consult the past, but mostly to learn from it, not to live in it. Treat each new day, like exactly what it is; a NEW DAY! That way, you’ll bring new insights and attitudes to it. 

Oh friends, earthly living is not easy, but as believers in, and followers of Jesus Christ, we have been given a blessed blueprint to make it as successful as possible; it’s called the Word of the Lord, the BIBLE! If we sincerely follow its statutes and ordinances, we will be successful. If we don’t, we won’t be successful. It’s as simple as that. 

And there’s no better paraphrase to all of that, than these wise words of Jesus. ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt.6:33) 

Yes my brethren, Jesus has no cause to lie or be unfaithful in His promises, so if He says the best way to live this earthly life is by first seeking God and his righteousness, then you know that’s so. Matter finish! Much LOVE!

…bring to each day…just what is necessary to keep it righteous…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 January 2015 Matthew 10:16

Matthew 10:16.     Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless (innocent) as doves.

Well Friends, it’s a Saturday morning that’s calling for snow and rain and freezing rain! Wow!

Over these next two days like we’re going to run the whole gamut of weather problems. We really can’t complain too much though, because we’ve been fairly snow and rain free for at least a couple of weeks now. And besides that, we’re God’s children and a little bad weather doesn’t deter us from doing Jesus’ work. (smile)

Of course it could get fairly rough, like the ice storm we had last year, but even then, we brave the elements like true soldiers of God’s army. What wonderful designations we embrace my people; a child of God, and a soldier in His army! His army of pioneers and pilgrims, going forth to spread His holy Word all over the universe He’s created.

And in the remarkable words of our Bit, Jesus sends us forth, just like He did the first disciples, to do just that: ‘Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless (innocent) as doves.’

And the scholars tell us, re ‘Wise as serpents (cf. Gen.3:1). In the ancient Near East, the serpent was considered the wisest of beasts. A cautious wisdom was necessary to deal with the fierce opposition that the disciples would face.’

Yes my people, it is a wonderful honour to work for Jesus, winning souls for Him, or rather causing lost souls to come to Him for comfort and succour, salvation and eternal life! But unfortunately it is a job that can also entail severe repercussions. That’s why Jesus warned the disciples, and has the same warning for us.

‘But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues. And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against (to) them and the Gentiles. But when they deliver you up, take no thought (do not worry about) how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you, in that same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.

And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents and cause them to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved. But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, ye shall not have gone over (through) the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come.’ (Matt.10:17-23)

Oh my fellow believers, working for Jesus can indeed be a dangerous job. All the stuff that Jesus spoke about befell the disciples. They suffered serious persecution on Jesus’ behalf, and so will we, possibly not to the death, as they did, and some are still experiencing in some parts of the world, but serious enough to cause us to consider our options.

But when times do get rough, just remember Jesus’ advice: ‘Don’t worry about what you’ll say, for the Holy Spirit will tell you what to say.’ Yes Friends, the Holy Spirit is our guide and director, and He will not leave us helpless and defenceless when we stand up strong for Jesus!

And then we come to the most important part of His message; that those who endured, who withstood the trials and tribulations in His name would be saved. And all God’s children shouted a lusty ‘Glory Hallelujah! Blessed is the Lamb that was slain for us!’

Yeh mih people, we can shout all sorts of niceties now, but when the time of persecution comes, will we still sing that song? For all our sakes, I do hope so. It’s just that in these spoiled, selfish and easy living times, most of us have lost our belly and backbone, and cave in and give up under the smallest of trials.

But remember too, that we’ve promised that this year of 2015 will be one in which we will rise, without fear and anxiety, to each and every occasion to promote Jesus and His lifestyle.

Now let’s take a gander at some explanations of the scholars for those verses. ‘!0:17-22.  Take no thought means “Do not be anxious.” (See Mark 13:9-13; Luke 12:11-12). It shall be given you promises that the inner prompting of the Holy Spirit would tell them what to say in each situation they would face.

For my name’s sake: They would endure great persecution because of their identification with Jesus Christ. But he that endureth to the end shall be saved is a promise of perseverance, not a teaching that salvation may be lost. Rather, it indicates that those who are truly saved will indeed endure to the end.’

And that’s the gospel truth my people! If we persevere to the end, great shall be our rewards in heaven!

And I want to close with a very true and enlightening quote that’s rather appropriate to our situation. It’s attributed to Margaret Mead (1901-1978), the world renowned American anthropologist. And it says: ‘Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.’

And she doesn’t lie Friends, for look at what a small group of twelve men started. It changed the world! And we are proud and grateful recipients of their commitment. Now let’s go out and do likewise, even though we Christians are in the minority, for with Jesus in the mix, anything and everything is possible. Much LOVE!

…today is all we have…so let’s use it wisely…