Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 June 2020 Hebrews 4:16.

Hebrews 4:16.     ​Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
 

‘And God spake all these words saying… Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.’ (Ex. 20:8-11) 

As always friends, our God never minces words, He comes straight out and tells it like it is. And by the way, for those of you who don’t know, that is one of the original Ten Commandments! (smile) Thus we have been told that we have to keep the sabbath day, which we celebrate on a Sunday, holy and in remembrance of God, with rest and praise and worship. 

Unfortunately, though churches have recently been given the green light to open for a specific percentage of people, with numerous safe conditions, most of them are not quite ready to do so. That means we still have to worship and sing and praise through technological methods. But it has never stopped us before, and neither is it going to stop us now. (smile) So without further ado, let’s get started with today’s song of praise nuh, a hymn appropriately titled for these rough and dangerous times: ‘Come Boldly to the Throne of Grace!’ 

Yes friends, that’s how our wonderful Lord expects us to come to Him – boldly, with confidence and faith in His undying LOVE, grace and mercy, but also humbly. Boldly, doesn’t mean arrogant and bold-faced. (smile) And now, with soulful voices, sincere hearts, and perfect harmony, let’s offer up our sacrifice of praise, boldly to the throne of God. 

‘Come boldly to the throne of grace, Ye wretched sinners come, and lay your load at Jesus feet, And plead what He has done. How can I come? Some soul may say, I’m lame and cannot walk; My guilt and sin have stopped my mouth, I sigh, but dare not talk. Come boldly to the throne of grace, Though lost, and blind, and lame; Jehovah is the sinner’s friend, And ever was the same. He makes the dead to hear His voice; He makes the blind to see, The sinner lost, He came to save, And set the prisoner free. 

Come boldly to the throne of grace, For Jesus fills the throne; and those He kills, He makes alive; He hears the sigh or groan; Poor bankrupt souls, Who feel and know, the hell of sin within; Come Boldly to the throne of grace; The Lord will take you in. Come Boldly to the throne of grace; The Lord will take you in…the Lord will take you in…Yes the Lord will take you in…take you in’ 

And He certainly will! The Lord will NEVER refuse anyone, despite their terrible sins, who comes to Him with a sincere heart of repentance. Because that’s exactly whom He came to earth to save; the lost, the sick, the weary, the tired and downtrodden! Jesus said so Himself: ‘For the Son man is come to save that which was lost.’ (Matt.18:11) If He says so, then it must be so! (smile) 

But here are the passages of scripture that our song was most likely based on, those to do with the sympathetic Christ, as recorded by the author of Hebrews. ‘Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into (through) the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession (conviction, faith). For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (sympathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (our weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.’ (Heb. 4:14-15) 

And that’s where Jesus wins them my brethren; He is able to sympathize, to empathize with our predicaments, our ‘sufferation’ because He also suffered them as a man here on earth and knows exactly how they hurt and can be detrimental to our very beings! The only difference is that because He was also God, He did not fall to the temptations like we do. Glory be mih people! And that’s why the author of Hebrews could continue in strong proclamation: ‘Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’ (Heb. 4:16) 

Mama Yo! What a glorious proclamation and scripture of assurance! How can we not turn to Jesus eh, since NO ONE else offers such a wonderful opportunity? We’d be truly foolish not to accept such a magnanimous gesture! And, furthermore, if this isn’t a time of rather acute need my friends, I don’t know what it will take to call it such nuh. With sickness and protests simultaneously enveloping our entire world, that certainly sounds like a time of need to me. 

And here’s why it’s oh so necessary to turn to Jesus and to hold on tightly to our faith. The scholars explain: ‘4:16. Only Christianity provides such boldness for sinful men before a holy God, and that boldness is possible only because of our High Priest (Jesus Christ). The figure of a throne suggests a place of authority and provision. It is the place to obtain God’s grace when it is especially needed.’ 

Yes mih people, NO other faith allows it’s members such reassurance! They have to go and beg and plead and try to browbeat their supposed deity. But as Christians, true believers in and followers of Christ, we are gifted with the provision to come boldly to the throne of God and ask for His amazing grace, His powerful favour, all because of Christ’s work on the cross at Calvary! 

That’s why Bruh Paul could confidently write to the Ephesians: ‘In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.’ (Eph. 3:12) In other words, in Christ and through faith in Him we may enter God’s presence with boldness and confidence. It can’t get any better than that friends! That’s why I encourage us today to put our whole trust, surrender our entire beings, hearts, souls and bodies to Christ Jesus, for only in Him is there any hope for the lost, the sick and the weary! Much LOVE!

…faith doesn’t make it easy…faith makes it possible…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 November 2014 Exodus 20:8

Exodus 20:8.  Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.

And then it was Sunday…the Sabbath Day – the Day of the Lord – a special day set aside for fellowship, to give and receive encouragement from fellow believers, wherein our faith in Jehovah God is renewed, hope is engendered, and thus the strength of our spiritual man is increased!
 
Yes Friends, the Sabbath Day is very important in the life of the believer. So let’s take it from the beginning nuh, from that time when the Lord handed down the Ten Commandments to the children of Israel, through Moses, at the foot of Mt. Sinai (Horeb).
 
And the Lord considered the Sabbath Day so important that He included it in those Ten Commandments, as stated so simply but rather directly in our Bit. ‘Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.’ A simple, but no nonsense statement my people!
 
And to further testify to the high esteem the Sabbath day held in God’s eyes, He went on to explain in this addendum. ‘Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
 
For in six days the Lord made the heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.’ (Ex.20:9-12)
 
There can therefore be no argument about the observation of the Lord’s Day my brethren! We might argue –as we so foolishly do – as to exactly which day, Friday, Saturday or Sunday, is the seventh day, and the real Sabbath. But the undeniable fact of the matter is that whichever day we choose to celebrate it, we must seriously reverence the Lord in it.
 
And it’s interesting to note that as the Israelites made their pilgrimage through the wilderness, as the Lord gave Moses directions and instructions on how His chosen people were to live, the celebration of the Sabbath was raised several times. Let’s spend the rest of the Bit looking at some of them.
 
In Exodus 23, in the section on ‘Judgements concluded,’ Moses throws in this timely reminder. ‘Six days thou shalt do thy work, and on the seventh day thou shalt rest: that thine ox and thine ass may rest, and the son of thy handmaid, and the stranger, may be refreshed.’ (Ex.23:12)
 
There you have it Friends, in black and white, from the mouth of the Lord through Moses; the Sabbath day, besides being blessed, hallowed and holy, is a day for refreshing both body and soul!
 
And moving right along, we come to Exodus 31, where the Sabbath is highlighted as a sign. Listen to the Good Book tell it: ‘And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you (set you apart).
 
Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth (profanes) it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul (person) shall be cut off (by death) from among his people. Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the Lord; whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.
 
Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.’ (Ex.32:12-17)
 
Yuh see mih breddren, the Lord’s Day was considered so important that if you breached it, death was to be the punishment!
 
Luckily for us though, we don’t go to those drastic lengths today, since Jesus came and declared: ‘The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath. Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the Sabbath.’ (Mark 2:27-28)
 
And the scholars explain that thus: ‘2:27-28. Jesus’ reasoning is that divine intuitions on earth are to have a God-honouring, noble, and liberating function. Sabbath laws had for some degenerated into a mockery of God’s intent. Jesus, the Son of man and Lord…of the sabbath, having power to forgive sin, can also teach rightly regarding proper observance of the Jewish Sabbath. Jesus here touches a raw nerve, as the next incident shows.’ That’s His healing of a lame man on the Sabbath day. (Mark 3:1-6)
 
However Friends, it still behoves us to keep the Sabbath day holy, and fellowship with each other, because that is exactly what Jesus did. Wherever He was on the Sabbath day, He made sure that He attended the synagogue to fellowship and hear the Word.
 
Then in Leviticus 19, re the laws of holiness and justice, this little tidbit on the Sabbath is thrown in. ‘Ye shall keep (observe) my sabbaths, and reverence my sanctuary: I am the Lord.’ (Lev.19:30) And the same thing is thrown in again on the chapter on Idolatry. (Lev.26:2)
 
Then in Deuteronomy 5, when Moses reminds them of the covenant at Mt. Sinai (Horeb), he goes through the Ten Commandments again, including: ‘Keep the sabbath day to sanctify it (keep it holy), as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee.’ (Deut.5:12)
 
And we’ll close with a word from Isaiah on the observance of the Sabbath. ‘If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words:
 
Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places (hills) of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.’ (Is.58:13-14)
 
Yes Friends, if we truly honour the Lord on the Sabbath, then we will surely be blessed! That’s God’s promise. And we know He never breaks them, so let’s go out and honour Him today nuh, on His special day, and keep it as holy and restful as we can. That’s the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!
 
…if the Creator of the universe could rest from His labour for one day…why can’t His greatest creation faithfully do the same eh…