Today’s Scrip-Bit   14 September 2021 John 13:35.

John 13:35.      By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.

So mih bredrin, a warm and wonderful Tuesday to all you who treasure Christ Jesus as Lord and Saviour! May His light and LOVE shine through us today, as we go about doing His awesome earthly work, encouraging others to come to Him and enjoy the amazing benefits of being in His blessed organization, His church, and also having a most splendiferous personal relationship with Him! 

What could be better than that eh mih people; belonging to Christ’s body of followers, but also having a personal friendship with him? Absolutely nothing! Yes friends, in Jesus we have the best of ALL worlds! Never forget that! So let’s stop selling both Jesus and us short by thinking and consequently acting like He is not enough, for He surely is…and much more too! 

Ah friends the ole fella’s just getting excited, as I usually do when I talk about the goodness and mercy of Jesus, because I’ve experienced so much of it during my long life, even when I didn’t know what it was. Yes, in hindsight, I can now see and realize that it was indeed the goodness and mercy of God that kept me going through some serious situations before I fully gave my life to Him. 

And since I’ve done that…Brother! I’ve seen so much of His undeserved grace and mercy, that I can’t even count or remember half of them! That’s why I can confidently tell you that Jesus is an awesome friend and Saviour. His work is demanding, but His yoke is light and easy to bear, while His rewards are outstanding! Glory be my faithful brethren! 

And all Jesus really desires of us is to show that most worthy and amazing attribute of LOVE in our everyday lives. When you break it down it looks like this: to LOVE the Father, LOVE Him, and LOVE ourselves and each other. Now that should not be as hard to do as we make it seem, since it’s basically showing kindness and goodness to those we meet. But unfortunately, it seems that the opposite and very negative emotion of hate, found in things like anger, bitterness, resentment, strife and unkindness, are much easier for us to propagate, since it’s that negative stuff that’s now holding our world hostage. 

How sad it is my people, that goodness and mercy can’t seem to outweigh hate and its evil companions. And it’s only when we receive Jesus and hold on tightly to Him and what He stands for that we can ever hope to defeat the enemy and His wicked ways. That’s why Jesus said to the disciples: ‘A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:34-35) 

Yes, my fellow saints, that’s the big difference between the followers of Christ and the non-followers; the followers are supposed to have LOVE for each other in words and deeds, not just meaningless talk, nor as He blasted the Pharisees. ‘Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye are like unto whited sepulchres (whitewashed tombs), which indeed appear beautiful outside, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity (lawlessness).’ (Matt. 23:27-28) 

And sadly, that’s how too many of us supposed believers and followers of Jesus behave nowadays. That’s basically why the unbelievers don’t pay more attention to us, because we don’t truly walk our talk, that LOVE for each other is most definitely not shown in our daily dealings. Just think about all the divisions in the church of Christ nuh, with umpteen religions, sects, denominations etc., which only breed petty differences, resentment, anger and the whole host of negative emotions amongst supposed Christians. 

How can that sad state of affairs draw others to Jesus eh? The enemy is more together, more as one, than we believers are. No wonder they are in the ascendance right now, while we believers are running a far second place because of our many differences and lack of togetherness. 

And in his own way, John repeated Jesus’ invocation to the disciples in his first epistle. ‘And hereby we do know that we know him (Jesus), if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the LOVE of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.’ (1 John 2:3-6) 

Yes friends, as the scholars so rightly inform us: ‘The test of knowing God’s LOVE is keeping His Word… While no one can or need duplicate Jesus’ atoning (earthly) ministry, His disciples are called to imitate His devotion to God and compassion for others. See John 13:15; 1 Peter 2:21.’ Those are indisputable facts, but unfortunately, our devotion to God and compassion for others is sadly lacking in these terrible times. And I believe it’s my bounden duty to highlight those two passages the scholars referred to above there. 

Listen to Jesus after He had washed the disciples’ feet. ‘If I then, your Lord and Master (Teacher), have washed your feet; ye ought also to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.’ (John 13:14-15) It couldn’t get any clearer than that friends! Jesus is the example we ought to follow. Granted, we can’t do all that He did, but we surely can have much more reverence and devotion to the Father and show more simple compassion for each other. 

And Peter tells it to us thus: ‘For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow in his steps.’ (1 Pet. 2:21) Don’t know what else to say nuh. So, for those of us who sincerely try to follow in Jesus’ footsteps, let’s go home declaring (yeah!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, telling the whole world who and whose we are; to whom we truly belong. 

Altogether now: ‘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!’ 

Now, it’s our duty to go out into the world and share that amazing LOVE and friendship of Jesus with the many who don’t know it! Much LOVE!

…it’s time for Christians…to play a strong and true game of…follow the Leader…                                                                                                           

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 August 2015 Psalm 4:7-8

Psalm 4:7-8.   Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time that their corn (grain) and their wine increased. I will both lay me down in peace and sleep: for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety. 

Well Friends, it’s Tuesday morning, somewhat cloudy in my area, but expected to get bright and sunshiny as the day progresses. And you know what that means? It means that we’ve made it safely through Monday… Glory Hallelujah! 

And the Lord still has a plan in mind for us today. Yes my brethren, we made it safely through the evil world; overcame our fears, anxieties, frustrations and anger, obviously with help from our most wonderful Jehovah God. 

And all Jehovah’s children loudly and proudly and sincerely declared. ‘All power and glory to our great and gracious God on High, in whom we place our entire trust! We surrender our lives completely to Him. Great is His Name…and may He reign forever! Amen.’ 

Ah mih people, such wonderful words of truth and wisdom! Our God is indeed great and powerful, glorious and gracious… And He WILL reign FOREVER! There’s absolutely no doubt about that. 

And to show how that all pans out for good in our lives, listen to these wonderful words from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s aptly titled ‘Beautiful Things Happen.’ 

Please declare with me: ‘O God Such beautiful things happen When I meet You day by day In quietness and confidence. There is a deep inner wholeness And the assurance of Your guidance. I am not so easily disturbed By changing circumstances. I am less dependent on others And more dependent on You. 

My eyes may be full of tears But my heart is full of joy. In discovering your hidden treasures I learn how deeply I am treasured by You. When day by day I am responsive To Your whispered secrets You do more for me in one day Than I could do for myself in a lifetime.’ 

And Friends, if you are a true believer in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, then that is the absolute and indisputable truth! Because that is exactly how He operates in the lives of true believers. Oh glory to God my people, for the wondrous works He performs in our lives! 

And the promise detailed for that awesome poem is also our Bit for today. ‘Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time that their corn (grain) and their wine increased. I will both lay me down in peace and sleep: for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.’ More words of gospel truth my brethren! 

Yes Friends, when we have Almighty God as our guide and safe-keeper then we don’t have to fret and worry about our earthly demise, because He is the ultimate in power and control, and He will let no undue harm come to us. Remember His most awesome and faithful promise as declared by His trusted servant Isaiah. 

‘No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgement thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of (from) me, saith the Lord.’ (Is.54:17) 

Oh my fellow believers, how great and wonderful and magnanimous is our God! Yuh see the heritage He so generously provides for us? How can we then not LOVE and worship and glorify and thank Him eh? If we claim to be believers and don’t do that, then we are indeed like the Pharisees, as Jesus said to them. 

‘Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye are like unto whited sepulchers (whitewashed tombs), which appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.’ (Matt.23:27-28) 

And the scholars offer an explanation on the above verses. ’23:27-33. Whited sepulchers: Since contact with a dead body rendered a person unclean according to the Mosaic Law, graves were customarily painted white to make them conspicuous and give the opportunity of avoiding contact with them.’ 

Unfortunately though, too many of us supposed Christians are actually like those Pharisees of old, and that is why a lot of unbelievers don’t take our beliefs or us seriously, and tend to mock and scorn our faith. Ah Friends, we are ambassadors of Christ, which means that we are expected to show a good and right image of Him and all that He stands for. 

If we are wishy washy in our faith and our behaviour, then that is the image the unbelievers will get of Him. And nobody wants to belong to, or worship some wishy-washy faith. Therefore, if we don’t put our best foot, our best efforts forward, then we are in fact doing Jesus and His Holy Name a grave injustice. 

So please, today, let us all consider the image that we are projecting to the outside world, and make sure that it is the right and proper one; one that lifts up Jesus and his Holy Name, and not one that disgraces it. Now let’s go home with some wonderful words of encouragement and edification from Psalm 97 – The Lord is far above all gods. 

‘Ye that LOVE the Lord, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hands of the wicked. Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright of heart. Rejoice in the Lord, ye righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance (for the memory) of his holiness (His holy name).’ (Ps.97:11-12) 

Oh Friends, what words of eternal wisdom and truth! Please let’s do as it says, so that we can be blessed and enjoy the fruits of God’s goodness. Much LOVE!…God’s promises are faithful and true…but they are of no use…unless and until…we accept them into the depths of our hearts…and make them ours… 

P.S. Please excuse the lateness of the Bit, the ole fella just was not up to scratch this morning. (smile) Much LOVE!