Today’s Scrip-Bit   20 September 2022 John 8:42a.

John 8:42a.        If God were your Father, ye would LOVE me:

It’s Tuesday, another glorious late summer’s day… and we’re still around. Thank the Lord! And you know what that means? We still have work to do down here in God’s great plan for our lives. So please, let’s get ourselves together and do what we need to do, be it big or small, significant or insignificant in our sight, because every little cog is important in God’s eyes and plans. 

And that goes sort of double for me this morning, because I was very late to bed and thus was somewhat tardy in rising, (smile) and then some other things got in the way, as things always do when you’re late and behind schedule, so I’m only now, almost noon, getting to writing the Bit. But even in that unfortunate circumstance, there are a couple lessons to be learnt; like get to bed early if you want to get up early, and give yourself some extra time to do the unlikely things that are likely to happen every day. And all God’s people, said a loud and sincere ‘Lesson learnt!’ (smile) 

Ah friends, there are so many lessons for us to learn, especially in these grievous times, these times of so many unexpected storms, both literal and figurative. But unfortunately, we don’t seem to be learning them at all, because we’re still exhibiting the ungodly, angry and divisive actions that have brought us to this desperate point. One would think that because we’re the Lord’s most magnificent creation, with minds capable of wisdom, understanding and reason, that we’d wake up and realize that continual division and dissension would only breed further disillusionment, anger, hate and warfare amongst brothers and sisters, all creations of the One True God Jehovah. 

But it seems like our selfish, warlike human nature has taken over, while wisdom, understanding and reason have conveniently fled the coop. In other words, the enemy is winning this current round of warfare; ungodliness is trumping godliness. And we all know that’s just a recipe for total disaster and destruction! For all the enemy does is come to steal, to kill and destroy, to reap havoc amongst God’s people. No wonder Jesus berated the Pharisees thus, when they spoke of God being their Father. 

‘If God were your Father, ye would LOVE me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts (desires) of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode (stands) not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own (from his own nature): for he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not.’ (John 8:42-45) 

Yes friends, the devil, the author of lies and deceit is still around today and is even more powerful than ever, as the great turmoil engulfing our world readily shows. That turmoil can only be the work of the enemy, not of God. For God does not deal in such upheaval and deceit. He is not a warmonger like the enemy. That simply means we are listening to the devil more than we are listening to God. 

And John corroborates this in his first epistle, when he writes: ‘He that committeth (practices) sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. Whosoever is born of God doth not commit (practice) sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that LOVETH not his brother.’ (1 John 3:8-10) 

Now what does all of the mean? The scholars tell us that ‘John is not speaking of sinless perfection (see 1:8,10; 2:2). He speaks here of habitual practice of known sinful acts. The true believer’s actions will conform to the character of his true father, either God or Satan. The person born of God will reflect this in his behaviour.’ And furthermore, ‘For John, a mere “profession of faith” in Christ was insufficient if not accompanied by the outward marks of divine parentage.’ And on top of that, ‘He links LOVE for other Christians closely with righteous living. (see John 13:35) 

Yes, we all know that scripture, or ought to know it, and have it stenciled indelibly in our hearts, souls and minds. For they are the defining words of a true disciple of Christ, as He said it. ‘By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples; if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:35) But it’s oh so obvious by the ungodly turmoil in our world that LOVE for each other is not paramount amongst our concerns, but rather the things of the devil; hate, anger, deceit, lies and unnecessary destruction. 

Instead of building, we seem bent on destroying what has taken us so long to build. It’s rather unfortunate that what has taken years, even centuries to build, can be totally destroyed in the blink of an eye. And that’s what the human animal seems hell bent on doing in these turbulent and ungodly times. The devil must be in his glee with all the destructive stuff that’s happening these days. 

But yuh know what my faithful brethren, we need to totally realize and fully believe that good is more powerful than evil, and LOVE than hate. And don’t think the devil doesn’t know that, he knows it better than us, that’s why he’s fighting tooth and nail to have our sinful natures come to the forefront and not our godly ones. 

So what’s the answer? Believers have to come together and show that we are true disciples of Christ, by LOVING each other, and working together to build Christ’s kingdom, instead of working against each other and thus tearing it down like the devil desires. 

Jesus said it this way. ‘But I say unto you which hear, LOVE your enemies, do good to them which hate you, Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully (spitefully) use you.’ (Luke 6:27-28) And Bruh Paul put it even simpler than that: ‘Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.’ (Rom. 12:21) And that my fellow saints in Christ should be our simple motto for these trying and troubled times, because LOVE indeed makes the world go round! 

So, for those of us who are truly trying to live for Christ, let’s go home declaring (awright!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know to whom we belong lock, stock and barrel. As one strong and sincere voice: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world. Amen!’ 

And having made that commitment, lets’ now go out and share the amazing LOVE and friendship of Christ with all those we meet, so that they too can come to know and LOVE Him like we do. Much LOVE!

…the most powerful weapon…LOVE…but it must be used…if it is to work… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 October 2020 John 15:5b.

John 15:5b.      …​for without me ye can do nothing.

Well a good Saturday morning to you my Scrip-Bit friends and family, wherever you are! I know that by the time some of you get this it will already be afternoon, but we hope that you’ve had a fine morning and will be having and even better afternoon. (smile) Yes, we wish nothing but peace, LOVE, joy and prosperity for us all this beautiful fall morning, when all the multi-coloured leaves are bathing in the glorious sunshine of our Creator, and thus exhibiting a cornucopia, an abundance of beautiful eye-pleasing, heart-warming colour. (smile) 

Anyway it’s Saturday, so let’s get on with our Saturday task; that of checking out the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And here’s the first one: ‘Positive affirmation: you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are. I am smart enough to make my own decisions.’ Now that’s certainly a situation that can only lead to confusion, especially if you’re a true believer in Christ Jesus. 

Yes, we ought always to positively affirm our worth and wisdom, but in Christ Jesus, not in ourselves. For remember His immortal words re our earthly abilities. ‘Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:4-5) 

Yuh see that last phrase friends: ‘for without me ye can do nothing.’ Well that’s the living, daylight truth! Without Jesus we can do very little, but with Him in us, and we in him, we can move mountains, anything’s possible, that’s when we become truly awesome! 

And this next quote leads us to delve deeper into our association with Jesus. ‘If you see that some aspect of your society is bad, and you want to improve it, there is only one way to do so: you have to improve people. And in order to improve people, you begin with only ONE thing: you can become better yourself.’ 

Ah friends, bettering oneself is what Jesus majors in! The quote itself contains much truth, to improve anyone or anything, we ought to begin with ourselves. Improvement ALWAYS begins with us! But who has the best improvement plan eh? JESUS! Yes mih people, you can’t beat Jesus’ plan for improving souls and selves, because He takes you at whatever state or level you are at and transforms you into a brand new person! 

Wow! Hear how Bruh Paul puts it to the church at Corinth nuh: ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (creation): old things are passed away; behold all things are become new.’ (2 Cor. 5:17) Yes mih bredrin, when you become a follower of Christ, your old sinful life is discarded, thrown away, and Christ offers you a brand new start which certainly improves the standard of life that you had before. 

And that’s exactly what’s wrong with our current society; not enough people have thrown away their old lifestyles and taken up the new one that Jesus offers, no wonder our world is in such ungodly turmoil, featuring abundant strife and heart-breaking calamity. That only shows us the error in our first quote, that we’re not smart enough to make our own decisions. (smile) 

But having said all of that, this next quote further defines our awesomeness in Christ. ‘Not everyone will be happy when you begin to better yourself. Those who are for you will not just celebrate your triumphs, but they will also pray with you through your tribulations.’ Oh my, oh my! What words of indisputable truth! 

Unfortunately, when we try to better ourselves, be it in Jesus or any other way, not everybody will be pleased, for one reason or another. But that’s just the way life is. Some people are never pleased to see others trying to improve. However, those who are pleased with your improvement decision will go to any lengths to help you, even standing strong with you through the trials and tribulations we all encounter when we decide to improve. 

And there again, that’s what you gain when you become a follower of Jesus; a whole cloud of witnesses to help you work through that improvement! You’re never alone when your Lord and Saviour is Jesus Christ. Even in the most difficult times, He is there with you, walking alongside, and ofttimes He also encourages a living friend to walk with you through it all too. Sorry, that should be a living human being, because the three parts of our Deity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – are ALL living beings. 

That brings us to our last quote. ‘Your past is not a reflection of your future.’ And is that ever so true, especially when you become a follower of Christ! Remember we said that you become a new creation when Christ comes into your life and all the old things are thrown away? That means your past doesn’t have to affect your future anymore, because Jesus will give you a brand new life with a brand new future! Glory be! Regardless of how evil or sinful or poor or sick your old life was, a new life with Jesus washes all of that away, cleanses you and makes you whole. 

And if you don’t believe me, then listen to this Great Invitation from Jesus Himself nuh. ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt. 11:28-30) 

Mama Yo! There’s no better invitation to be found in all the world my people! And though others might offer all sort of stuff, ONLY Jesus has the true power to transform, to improve lives. We can’t even do much on our own. So please don’t listen to any falsehood or false doctrines from other false teachers. If you truly want to improve your life, in some particular area, or in all areas, the ONLY ONE to turn to is JESUS, because He holds ALL the answers to ALL the questions of life, even the very breath of life itself! Much LOVE!

…the only sensible way to live this earthly life…is with Jesus as your Lord and Saviour…