Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 December 2016 John 15:5.

John 15:5.    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.

Ah friends, it’s been one of those pretty late nights or early mornings, so the ole fella is a bit behind in his activities. (smile) Anyway, it’s a glorious day to be alive on God’s great earth. 

We don’t know exactly what will happen to us, how our day will go, but we do know that our wonderful Father in heaven is controlling everything for our good. Therefore we can confidently proclaim like the psalmist: ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we WILL rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24) 

Yeh mih people, what’s the use of having a day given to you as a gift and not enjoy it eh? None whatsoever! But please remember too that the Lord expects good stuff from us in return, so let’s do our best to please Him. 

And I got a bookmark from the Prostate Cancer Society yesterday with this interesting quote from Tom Bodett (1955), American author, voice actor and radio host. It says: ‘They say a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world: someone to LOVE, something to do, and something to hope for.’ 

Well I don’t know if those three things will necessarily keep us happy, but I do know that without them, we’ll be very miserable and unhappy. (smile) 

Yeh friends, LOVE, Action and Hope are all very necessary ingredients of a successful and happy earthly life. But sadly, a lot of people lack them all. 

And the only place you’ll truly find them in all their glorious splendour is in an intimate relationship with our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, the Son of God who came to earth, was born in this Christmas season, so that we could understand more about our Creator and heavenly Father. 

Now let’s declare our Wednesday Wail, which helps us keep our eyes on Jesus, who gives us the LOVE, Action and Hope we so fervently desire. 

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!’ 

Ah mih breddren, isn’t it just great to be associated with Jesus and all the wonderful things He has in store for us! 

And what could be more invigorating and pleasing than the awesome breath of life that He has breathed into our mortal bodies eh? Nothing really! For without it, we’re nothing; nothing but a dead set of bones and flesh. 

And yuh know, even with the breath of life in us, if we don’t have Jesus too, then we’re still nothing, because as He says in our Bit:‘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.’ 

And that’s the gospel truth my fellow believers! In the relationship between man and God, Jesus is indeed like the vine, and we are the branches, offshoots of that vine. Just like in real vines, the branches can’t produce anything unless they are attached to the vine, likewise, we can’t do anything without being attached to Jesus. 

And to make it even more lifelike, the Father tends the branches, like a real gardener, pruning and watering and doing whatever is necessary to keep the branches alive and fruitful. 

Now here is an interesting explanation from the scholars re our Union with Christ. ’15:5. The uniqueness of the Christian experience results from the union of Christ and the believer. This is expressed in scripture as Christ being in the believer and the believer in Christ. 

Ten times Paul uses the Greek preposition ‘sun’  (“together”) to describe this relationship. Believers were crucified (Gal.2:20), dead (Col.2:20), buried (Rom.6:4), quickened or made alive (Eph 2:1-5; Col.2:13), raised (Col.3:1; Eph.2:6), and glorified (Rom.8:17) together with Christ. 

Illustration: Jesus used the image of the vine and its branches to describe His union with the believer. Application: On the basis of the union, the apostle Paul showed how the successful Christian life can be opened with four key words in Romans 6: know (v.6), reckon (v.11), yield (v.13), and obey (v.17). 

The Christian can conquer sin because Christ lives in him. (Gal.2:20). (First Ref. John 7:37-38; Primary Ref. John 15:1-5; cf.1 John 5:13).’ 

Ah friends, I do hope those explanations helped us to better understand our relationship with Christ. And what would be a good exercise would be to check out all those scriptures. I just did that, and they are very interesting and useful. 

And we’ll end with one of those inspirational scriptures. ‘In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly (heart) shall flow rivers of living water.’ (John 7:37-38) 

Oh precious people, what a Titan, what a gigantic figure is our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Please, let’s show wisdom and common sense by staying attached to Him. Much LOVE!

…oh what beautiful fruit we bear…when Jesus waters our hearts… 

P.S. It’s somewhat late, but it wasn’t all my fault (smile) for while writing, I also had to get up and attend to a couple of technicians who came to do some work on my new furnace. Ah Lord eh! That wasn’t connected properly in the first place. But them’s the breaks. Have a blessed day my people! Much LOVE!

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 July 2016 John 6:48‏‏‏

John 6:48.    I am that bread of life.

HAPPY  CANADA  DAY !

Happy 149th Birthday Canada! May the Lord bless and keep you strong and godly that you might see another 149 birthdays! Amen! 

And though you may have recently declined in some respects, you are still the best big country in the world! And I believe that with my whole heart. I don’t want to live in any other big country. I have spent more than half of my life here, and obviously there have been some rough times, like there are everywhere, but you’ve never mistreated me. 

And the truth is, if you can make it in the northern climes, you can make it anywhere in the world. It hardens and toughens you up, gives you belly and backbone, which so many of us sadly lack in these trying times. 

And without a doubt, the populace, at least the working populace is overjoyed that today is Friday and also a holiday, so there’s been much shouting and carrying on re ‘TGIF! Thank God for Friday and this long weekend! The partying will be terrific! Lots of food and drink! Thank God for Fridays and the weekends yes!’ 

Ah Lord eh! (smile) Now to help us correct the overblown idea of the weekend being the time for excessive partying, let’s chant our Friday Chant, which offers us a much better perspective. 

As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yes friends, our lives would be much richer if we’d use that template for our weekend behaviour. Oh, and by the way, I’d be rather remiss if I didn’t throw in Granny’s wise advice for this long weekend. ‘Sonny boy, ah beg yuh, please, drunk or sober, please mind yuh business!’ 

And better advice than that could not be given my people, for ole Lucifer is always sneakily trawling around, seeking a soft or unprotected spot in our spiritual armour to jump in and cause havoc. So please let’s not give him any chances during our celebrations this weekend nuh. 

And if you think things will be humming up here this weekend, just think about what the U.S. will be like as they celebrate their 4th of July Independence Day on Monday. Mama yo! The whole of North America will be jumping this weekend, and Beelzebub and his evil cronies will certainly be busy too! 

But if we just keep our wits about us, we’ll be fine, since the enemy has no power over believers in Jesus Christ unless we allow him to. 

Now let’s address our Bit; the same one of the past couple days. ‘I am that bread of life.’ 

Christ while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum, had been trying to explain to His listeners who He was and His purpose here on earth. But they were most likely more concerned with physical bread to fill their stomachs than the spiritual kind that Jesus was referring to. 

Just before our Bit, He declares unto them: ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. 

I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.’ (John 6:47-51) 

What a wonderful invitation and promise my people! Do you want to live forever? Then eat the bread of eternal life that Jesus offers! It’s that simple. 

Today it might be for us, because we know the scriptures, but back then it was a tough thing for the people to imagine much less understand. And the Good Book tells us: ‘The Jews therefore strove (disputed) among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?’ (John 6:52) They didn’t realize that Jesus was speaking figuratively, rather than literally. 

‘Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat (food) indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 

He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by (because of) me. This is that bread that came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.’ (John 6:53-58) 

Now imagine talking about eating your flesh and drinking your blood to any group of people at all, much less one forbidden to drink blood? (Lev.7:26-27) Obviously they were stunned and couldn’t fathom His speech. 

But friends, today, we know that Jesus was talking figuratively, meaning the Eucharist that we now celebrate. The bread represents His flesh and the wine His blood. So technically speaking, we have no excuses for not living forever, having eternal life, if we so desire. Unfortunately, many of us refuse it, but the wise choose it, because it is the word of God, the truth. 

Friends, I do hope that you are amongst that group of wise people who chose Jesus’ offer of eternal life, for that is the wisdom of all wisdom! Much LOVE!

…to refuse the Son of man’s offer of eternal life…is like committing suicide…