Today’s Scrip-Bit   6 October 2021 Ephesians 5:8.

Ephesians 5:8.     For ye were sometimes (once) darkness, but now ye are light in the Lord: walk as children of light. 

No more rain…And the sun is finally peeking out…Glory! Oh, the dark clouds are not all gone, but there is a great possibility of light, (smile) much more than we’ve had for the past few days. And that’s exactly how our Jesus comes and shines through our personal darkness. When we think that there is no hope, that the darkness will overwhelm us, He shows up unexpectedly with the bright light of His presence and chases the evil darkness away! Give Him some thanks and praise my faithful brethren for He is indeed a Saviour to those whose lives are consumed by the evil enemy. 

As the prophet Isiah so prophetically declared long ago, re the Prince of Peace: ‘The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath a light shined.’ (Is. 9:2) And that’s one of the most potent and prophetic prophecies ever prophesied! (smile) It heralded the coming of Jesus…the light of the world! 

But the sad news is that, as Jesus said: ‘And this is the condemnation that (the) light is come into the world, and men LOVED darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth (practices) evil hateth light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved (exposed).’ (John 3:19-20) 

And that’s the gospel truth my people! Those of us with evil deeds in our repertoire hate the light and will refuse to accept Jesus because we are afraid that those evil deeds will be exposed, for that’s what light does; it exposes the darkness, the sin, the evil in our souls! And we are not talking about physical light, but spiritual light, ‘light that shines on our hearts.’ 

I like how this article on thebereancall.org website with a conversation between Dave Hunt and T.A. McMahon describes the situation. T. A. McMahon says: ‘And men loved darkness rather than light.  Dave, is this in the statistical manual it talked about earlier? (Referring there to a manual on the power of DNA to operate without words or a language).

Dave Hunt replies: ‘Yeah, they don’t want to know the truth. I would say that whole statistical manual is a witness to this fact; men loved darkness rather than light. Instead of accepting the truth that we are separated from God by sin, that we are rebels in our hearts, that we need to be reconciled to God, we need to recognize that Jesus Christ is God who became a man to die for our sins, paid the penalty for our sins, died for our sins, rose from the dead and we open our hearts to Him and we allow Him to come in and He changes us completely. 

We are born again of the Word of God, Peter says. This Word that brings understanding, the truth that is the light that Jesus brought.  Now, it says they hated me without a cause because the light of Jesus Christ shows up the darkness, the darkness being what? Well, rebellion against God, running to hide from God, not wanting to know the truth and so forth.’ 

Now this passage from an article on the subject on the mtvchurchofchrist.org, further enlightens us. ‘The reason for the world’s LOVE affair with darkness is that it hides sin, or so it is believed. As long as it is dark, as long as there is no light of truth, those in sin can perpetuate their evil. But let one beam of truth pierce the darkness of sin and error, let one ray of goodness break through, and those in darkness scatter like so many roaches exposed to daylight. But the feeling of having hidden sin is only an illusion, for all things are open and naked before God (Heb. 4:13).’ 

And I’ll just insert that verse here. ‘Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight (hidden from his sight): but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do (must give account).’ (Heb. 4:13) So, as we well know, there is absolutely no hiding from God, but many of us still foolishly try to retain the illusion. 

The article then continues with this interesting slant. It says: ‘One of the reasons, if not the main reason, those in the world often feel uncomfortable around faithful Christians is that the faithful child of God reminds sinners of their sins. The faithful child of God might well feel uncomfortable around the sinner, as well (Eph. 5:11).’ Oh friends, I surely hope we do feel uncomfortable around evil doers, but nonetheless show them the light of Christ shining through our words and actions. 

And to substantiate all that we’ve said, let’s listen to the words of Bruh Paul to the church at Ephesus on the ways of the believer. ‘Let no man deceive you with vain (empty) words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be ye not partakers with them. For ye were sometimes (once) darkness, but now ye are light in the Lord: walk as children of light. (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable to the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove (expose) them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.’ (Eph. 5:6-12) 

Yes my brethren, once upon a time we too walked in darkness, but then we saw the light of Christ, and our lives were transformed. And the scholars explain it all thus: ‘5:8. Our knowledge of the truth is attended by moral purity and happiness. 5:10.  Because of constant temptations and solicitations to evil, believers must always be proving or discerning what is and what is not acceptable unto the Lord. 

5:11. Reprove is better translated “expose.” The believer’s duty is expressed here in two ways. Negatively, he is not to have any fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, that is, not indulge in the sins of the unsaved. Positively, he is to “expose” (reprove) these sins, that is bring them to light and show them for what they really are, so that the unbeliever may see their hideous nature and their terrible consequences. 5:12. For tells why the Christian must expose the sins of the lost. If it is shameful even to discuss their iniquities in decent company how much the worse is the committing of these sins. Hence the need to bring them to light.’ 

Ah my fellow saints, I do hope that all the above has now elucidated and enlightened us about walking in darkness and light, (smile) so that we are now capable of making good decisions on it. Now, for those of us who are sincerely trying to walk in the light, let’s go home declaring (oh yes!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. 

Altogether 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 believe me, if we endure until the very end, then that future will be even more glorious than we ask or imagine. So please, let’s hang in there my faithful brethren! Much LOVE!

…if light brings truth and happiness…why fool with darkness…which only keeps one trapped in sin and rebellion towards God…                                                                                                     

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 August 2015 Matthew 5:14‏‏‏

Matthew 5:14. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.

Okay all you party people, it’s Sunday, time to get up and get yourselves to church, for this is the day that was ordained by God for His children to gather in His sanctuary every week to worship Him and to revive and refresh our faith and witness. Yes Friends, leaving church makes you feel reinvigorated, renewed, and lifts your spirits.  

And we don’t want any petty excuses like I’m tired because I was out partying till late. You should have thought about that before. When you came home from work or wherever, you were tired too, but that didn’t stop you from going out to party, so please don’t let a little tiredness, plus a lot of apathy and laziness stop you from going to praise and worship and give thanks to your heavenly Creator this Caribana Sunday morning of  2015!

I’m chuckling here Friends, but seriously, that is the exact scenario that’s playing out in many Christian homes this Sunday morning. What is it eh about going to church that makes it feel like pulling teeth, but going out to parties requires a tight hold on our reins?

And yet we still profess to LOVE God so much. But how can you LOVE Him when you don’t want to go to His house and make nice with Him eh? I guess it’s partly because we still have this idea of God being some faraway, ephemeral Being, more like a fairy-tale king, who just sits on His throne in heaven on high and looks down on us mere mortals with only a cursory glance and an occasional nod.

But that’s the furthest thing from the truth Friends, because our wonderful God is always right beside us. In fact He dwells within us through the power of His Holy Spirit and He is very much interested in EVERY thing we do, because He truly LOVES us, with a LOVE so great that He even gave His one and only son Jesus Christ as a sacrifice so that we could be reconciled to Him! Now if that isn’t real true LOVE, I don’t know what is.

Somehow though, we seem to have a real problem reciprocating that LOVE! But if we truly want to spend eternity with Him in heaven, my people we have to get to a point of true LOVE, surrender and obedience to the Father’s will. Another part of our problem is that we’re too much into the things and ways of this wicked world, which are in complete opposition to those of God.

That brings to mind a recent interesting quote from our friend Anselm, who delights in inspiring us for a better tomorrow. And Anselm warns; ‘Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never have enough.’

And that’s gospel truth my brethren! Many of us don’t have enough because we are always concentrating on and complaining about what we don’t have, which only aggravates our spirits and drives us nuts. However, when we’re thankful for whatever we have, we bring a different element, a different emotion to the table; one of contentment, of sufficiency, at least for the time being, instead of constantly being uptight and wanting.

Remember the ole Jamaican saying: ‘Wanty wanty, never get it?’(smile) That’s also indisputable truth! As sincere, practicing Christians though, what we need to do is to set a proper example for the rest of the world, for the infidel, the heathen, to follow.

As Jesus so wisely puts it our Bit: ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.’ And we all know that to be true, that’s why lighthouses were always built on hilly ground, so that their light could be seen from far and wide and give good guidance to the travellers seeking it.

That’s our mission on this earth people; to be guiding lights in a world of darkness. Not necessarily as overblown as a light house, but certainly at least as a large lamp. 

As Bruh Paul advised the Ephesians when talking about the ways of the believer: ‘For ye were sometimes (once) darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light.’ (Eph.5:8) Yes my people, that’s certainly Jesus’ expectation of His followers.

And the scholars give us this bit of info on that verse. ‘5:8. Darkness indicates that the readers used to be spiritually unenlightened, and accompanying this ignorance was immorality with its resultant guilt and misery. Light denotes that the recipients are now to be religiously informed. Their knowledge of the truth is attended by moral purity and happiness.’

Ah mih breddren, what is it going to take for us to really wake up and see and truthfully accept the light eh? We have to do it real soon Friends, because Jesus can return at any moment, and then it will be too late.

Listen to how John describes God’s light in his first epistle. ‘This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not (practice) the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.’ (1John 1:5-7) What awesome consolation Friends!

And the scholars offer this info on those verses. ‘1:5. Again John implies his eyewitness status, having heard of him, that is, Jesus. John passes on to the church teaching he first received from Jesus. Light and darkness here have ethical overtones. John is saying that God is perfect and good; there is thus no sin or evil in Him. This will have implications for followers of this God in the following verses.’

‘1:6. Walk in darkness means walking in sin. John may have had in mind people who claimed to be enjoying a close relationship with God, but whose lives were clearly characterized by sin. Such a state of affairs, John say boldly, is impossible; such persons are lying.’

‘1:7. “God is light” (v.5): To walk in this light, which is to live free from the bondage of sin (cf. Rom 6:18), is to make true communion between believers possible. Jesus’ violent death on the cross, which is what blood signifies, is the initial antidote for and ultimate defense against sin’s presence and power.’  

Voilà! There we have it Friends! The only antidote and the best defence against Lucifer’s evil presence and power: the shed BLOOD of Jesus Christ! So please, let’s be wise and go to the cross and take hold of it nuh, so that we can run with it blazing like a brilliant torch of hope in the darkness of this satanic world. That’s wisdom everlasting! Much LOVE!

…while ye have light…believe in the light…that ye may be…the children of light…  (John 12:36a)