Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 June 2014 Acts 14:22

Acts 14:22.  Confirming (strengthening) the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

Oh Tuesday, oh glorious Tuesday! What tales of joy or sorrow, success or defeat will you bring? Let’s hope that there are many more tales of joy and success than sorrow and defeat.
 
I know for one thing, Tuesday’s brought rain, some of the early rains that we’ve so far been lacking. The rain began late yesterday evening and fell on and off during the night. So it looks like it will be a rainy day Tuesday.
 
 But the rain didn’t seem to be the refreshing type that brings respite from the day’s heat, and yesterday was hot in my neck of the woods. The rain just caused the night to be muggy and uncomfortable, which made sleeping, even with all my windows open, a somewhat rough experience.
 
So much so that when the Lord called this morning, I had a hard time answering the bell. The old body just wanted to roll over and go back to sleep, feverish though it was. However Friends, I’m glad and proud to say that on this occasion the will prevailed, the will triumphed… Glory Hallelujah!
 
And here I am about the Lord’s business, though still somewhat bleary eyed. (smile) But as I always say, I have no doubt that our great, wonderful, forgiving, merciful and kind, magnanimous and understanding God and Creator will eventually bring me unto myself and unto Him, so that I can write something sensible in His Holy Name.
 
And that’s my testimony for this Tuesday morning, my people! (smile)
 
Yes Friends, the ole fella’s shaking it a bit rough this morning. But as we like to say, nothing but unconsciousness or death must stop the Bit from going out. Oh, it’s indeed a wonderful ideal, and so far, obviously with the Lord’s superior help, I’ve been able to live up to it.
 
Now that leads us nicely into our Bit. ‘Confirming (strengthening) the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.’
 
Unfortunately my brethren, followers of Jesus, just like our Leader, have been destined to undergo some trials and tribulation, some testing in the fires of this earthly life. Obviously most of us won’t be tested as hard and as horrifically as Jesus was, but some testing is indeed our lot.
 
And just like it brought Jesus closer to the Father, because He had to depend on Him for the wherewithal to do His bidding, even so our trials and tribulation ought to draw us closer to our Maker. For it is only through His redeeming grace and power that we can ever hope to successfully overcome our trials.
 
Now listen to these words of awesome wisdom and undeniable truth, re the coming apostasy (abandonment of religious faith), written by Bruh Paul to Timothy so long ago, but which are currently being fulfilled in these troubled times in which we live.
 
‘This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous (money lovers), boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
 
Without natural affection, trucebreakers (irreconcilable), false accusers (slanderers), incontinent (without self-control), fierce (brutal), despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady (reckless), high-minded (haughty), lovers of pleasure, more than (rather than) LOVERS of God;
 
Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
 
Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate (disapproved) concerning the faith. But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs was also.’ (2 Tim.3:1-9)
 
Ah mih people, like Bruh Paul’s living today and writing about us! It’s definitely not a pretty picture of our world, but it is indeed a very truthful one.
 
And to help us understand those verses, here is some info from the scholars. ‘3:1-4. The last days began with the birth of Christ and will culminate in Christ’s return to the earth to set up His kingdom. The prediction of perilous times indicates that apostasy will characterize the final days of the church age. 
 
3:5-9. A form of godliness is mere religion without power or spiritual life. Paul commands Timothy to turn away from these false teachers who prey upon silly women laden with sins, who are especially susceptible to false teachers.
 
Ever learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth condemns not intense study but some esoteric quest for truth apart from God’s Word. Jannes and Jambres, according to Jewish tradition, were the two magicians in Pharaoh’s court who attempted to duplicate Moses’ miracles (cf. Ex.7:11; 9:11).’
 
Oh Friends, I know that all we’ve been hearing about so far are trials and tribulations, but listen now to the rewards of living for Christ, as explained by our Saviour Himself.
 
He had just finished telling the disciples about it being ‘easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved?
 
But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.
 
Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore?
 
And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye shall also sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
 
And everyone that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or fathers, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first. (Matt.19:24-30)
 
Now Friends, neighbours and fellow believers, I ask you, are those rewards worth the testing and trials of this earthly life? I humbly submit that they certainly are!
 
But the Lord’s left it up to each individual to make that life changing decision to follow His Son or not. Please, I implore us to make the right one today, and invite Jesus into our hearts and souls right now, so that we can enjoy a much brighter tomorrow with Him in everlasting glory!
 
Why? Because that’s the undisputed wisdom of this earthly life! Much LOVE!
 
…in the world ye shall have tribulation…but be of good cheer…I have overcome the world…