Monthly Archives: April 2022

…in a nutshell

GOOD NEWS in a NUTSHELL

You want to be a good person

Without coercion

You summon up all resolve

All your senses you involve

The Law has caught you

With ‘you shall not…’ – but you do

Your will is imprisoned

Let it be understood

With the perfection-failure rule

You feel like a fool

Your daily disappointment

Is the fly in the ointment

Turn instead to the Master’s hand

Are you part of His disciple-band?

Well – ask for help – seek it now

The life of Christ – before Him bow

You will find Him best at keeping His law

Your heart to Him He will draw

And while you gaze at His beauty in awe

Guess what? – You have kept the law

Changeless

CHANGELESS

Hebrews 13/8:

Jesus Christ is [eternally changeless, always] the same yesterday and today and forever

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Two translations of the one statement. Two translations of the one verse in scripture/the bible.

Let’s break this down:

Firstly: Jesus Christ. Jesus is the man. Christ is God.

The Holy Spirit of the triune God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) descended on Jesus the man (Matt. 3/6) – He, by so doing, testified or revealed, or manifested to the inhabitants of this world – that Jesus (born of a virgin) – was the Only Begotten Son of The Living God – God manifest in the flesh – in a body prepared by God in a virgin’s womb — without a male/man’s intervention or involvement.

Some saw this clearly – others didn’t. And it remains the same to this day.

Jesus being formed within the womb of this virgin by the hand of God – was without sin, having been formed fearfully and wonderfully by God the Father.

Psalm 139

(speaking of the Psalmist but surely of all humankind). We read:

13 

For You formed my inward parts;

You covered me in my mother’s womb.

14 

I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;

Marvellous are Your works,

And that my soul knows very well.

15 

My frame was not hidden from You,

When I was made in secret…

This meant that Jesus had a human spirit like every other man. But joined to that human spirit was God The Son, as in the Person who dwelt with God in the eternal realm, before He came to earth – i.e. eternally dwelling in the heaven of heavens – not yet as (or in the form of) a man.

Colossians 1:

16 For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. 17 And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. 18 And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.

It was necessary that The Son of God allowed Himself to be clothed in a male body – which was formed in Mary’s womb. A body that God had prepared for Him.

Hebrews 10/5

Therefore, when He came into the world, He said: “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, But a body You have prepared for Me.

The reason for this was that God’s Perfect plan of salvation from sin – be thus brought to a lost and dying race of perishable human beings.

Jesus said: He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?

God (amongst all the other profound reasons), wanted to show Himself in a way that mankind could take in, and understand.

His mighty Presence shone through the Person of His Only Begotten Son in thought word and deed.

Manifesting His Glory in wisdom, miracles, authority and power with healing virtue and transformational influence upon the body soul and spirit of men and women, giving the Revelation of His Word for our constant guidance.

(Amp.) John 1/

18 No one has seen God [His essence, His divine nature] at any time; the [One and] only begotten God [that is, the unique Son] who is in the intimate presence of the Father, He has explained Him [and interpreted and revealed the awesome wonder of the Father].

God’s sinless and holy-loving nature will never change. To encounter Him in a Salvation experience, is to encounter the divine Son. And the nature mankind was born with can only fall in brokenness before Him with whom we have to do – if we are seeking Him, in the first place.

Those who will stubbornly refuse to seek Him, are likened to goats separated from the sheep on the day of judgement. (Matthew 35/22).

God’s Word will not change, God’s nature will not change, God’s ways will not change, God’s love will not change, God’s judgement will not change – He has done all things well.

Joshua 24:15

15 And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve,…But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

What to do through ’22

WHAT TO DO THROUGH ’22?

For genuine Christians exactly what to do in these strange days – is something we seek an answer to, regardless of what age category we fit into.

We are all faced with some undeniable facts (unless you are an atheist):

Wars and rumours of wars, pestilences, earthquakes in diverse places, evil men growing worse and worse, and all that Israel’s return to their homeland signifies, as we keep tabs on their ongoing history. (Matt. 24. II Timothy 3)

We brace ourselves for what is ahead, but from time to time drift into thinking what is happening on the earth is simply surreal.

And if you are like myself you have not totally landed on an eschatological position. I think there are six choices now, regarding ‘a position’ on the timescale, and order of events regarding the rapture and the tribulation etc., (six – but I might be mistaken?).

The powers of darkness have been invited by mankind through sin and unbelief – to achieve further entrenchment in the human psyche.

A satanic fog thickens on the brains of a wayward world.

Lies become perceived truth, and truth is dismissed by the mentally blind who cannot see. (II Corinthians 4/4)

Despite all that is happening on the planet –  sound doctrine is still sound doctrine.

The scriptures cannot be broken. The word of God shall never pass away. It is the bread of spiritual life. It is the only pure thing in a fallen world.

We the elect, must hold it in our hearts like never before. There is nothing else. And in the midst of the chaos – ‘if God be for us who can be against us…?’

God is building His church and we echo the words of Elisha 

2 Kings 6:17

17 And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

Eyes opened – to see the mighty army of God in the heavenly places, standing to attention at the behest of The Captain of our salvation. Ready to do His bidding as the fulfilment of prophesy unfolds.

God watches the battle for men’s souls – but we read, and are encouraged for now and the future, to take heed to this wonderful Word of God, that has contextual application but more than that – is ‘spirit and life’ – for those who will embrace it.

ISAIAH 60/

For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,

And deep darkness the people;

But the Lord will arise over you,

And His glory will be seen upon you.

3 The Gentiles shall come to your light,

And kings to the brightness of your rising.

We often hear the term used in the USA: ‘fellow Americans’. Well ‘fellow gentiles’ let me call you out of darkness into God’s glorious light.

Seek God while He may be found. All He needs is for you to have a needy soul, and He will respond to your cry.

God is not extinguished by the darkness – He extinguishes the darkness with His Light.

Non-Christian come to the light – Christian come for more light.

…the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

Easter and always

Easter and always

You tell me ‘it’s that time of year again’

As in the example of a Christmas previous to

You tell me ‘make an effort to attend church’

And remember Christ the whole day through

The term easter – placed on it all –

About The Christ who died to save us from the fall

You tell me to ‘approach in reverent awe’

These days of lent when the Saviour we saw

Manifest in the flesh – believed on in the world

Received up to glory – more than just

The old old story

But my response as I celebrate too

Is – it is more to me than a time of year

Rather it’s a daily occurrence

That I should appropriate and appreciate

He is my life – in Him I must remain

Until the One who came

Comes again

So easter everyday

in remembrance of Him

Resurrection Sunday His Life within

Virtual Travel

VIRTUAL TRAVEL

So you are travelling on

In your mind – stopping at sign posts

You are not far gone

When a sign post different than before

Gives you solace

As you slide to the floor

                         ***

You take a straw of grass

Huckleberry-it into your mouth

Contemplation follows

On this warm sunny day

You would like to go

Far far away

If only to be able to say

You’ve been there

T shirt bought anyway

                         ***

But actually your hope is different –

Just far enough to change the scenery

Is the plan of campaign

Before you saunter home again

                         ***

And anyway where to go – you haven’t found

As you looked at the brochures all around

the travel agent’s place

So many options – even outer space

Travel is virtual nowadays

It seems to be enough

As you’d rather stay at home

And google your way

From dawn to dusk

Buy a souvenir cushion and a bottle of pop

Pretending you have visited

The distant – seaside shop

Tea at Margie’s

TEA AT MARGIE’S

“Uncharacteristically this is all I can manage”

He decided – in uncharacteristic fashion

Laying his knife and fork aside

In the proper manner on the plate

And stretching his arms creating a V shape

He looked left – then right – she wasn’t in sight

“Where did Margie go?” He asked

But no one answered – they hadn’t finished their food

“Never speak with your mouth full” someone announced

With their mouth full

So he arose in what sounded like an ‘’scuse me”

                             ***

He went looking for Margie

She was outside smoking – or – she was on fire

At first he couldn’t decide

As smoke was mixed with flames

Getting to a gap in her drag

“What d’yi want?” Margie asked

“Oh nothing – just making conversation”

“But you haven’t said anything”

At which point he thought:

“What’s the point?”

      – And left

Good deeds…

Good deeds…

One of the great paradoxes of living as a human being is the fact that most(?) folks would like to be good, but in actual fact, do bad things.

The old adage that ‘actions speak louder than words’ comes to mind.

There are folks who are not professing Christians, and yet they do more ‘good things’ than I do.

Wow that’s a confession to make – right?

After all I’m the one who is ‘preaching’ here. Time I learned to practice what I preach – yes?

Well – just give me a moment to find excuses, and defend myself.

No – it’s best I just admit it – I fall short on the good works front, especially when I consider the dedication of some folks, in adverse situations and life threatening diseased areas, who faithfully dedicate themselves to providing the medical needs of those around them. To mention only one example of good deeds done.

And here I am with eternity nearer than when I first believed.

Here I am – always falling short in my own eyes.

Here I am – wishing I could have given Him (Jesus) more.

Here I am – Mr. Average Christian.

Yet here I am – ready to receive a full reward because I took Jesus at His word!!

Now this may not compute for you. It almost sounds like I can be the biggest vagabond on the planet and yet all will be well with me in the hereafter, regardless of my ‘performance’.

We must grasp that what took place at the cross of Jesus Christ was the release of the possibility for mankind to enter into an exchange deal with the Holy and Righteous God of the universe.

As the song says: ‘I traded my old tattered garments – He gave me a robe of pure white. I’m feasting on Manna from heaven and that’s why I’m happy tonight’.

I traded my life for His, I accepted His gift of eternal life through Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 2/

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.

Attentiveness

ATTENTIVENESS 2022

So where is your attention?

Your attention will be with whatever – has got your attention.

Now that I have stated the obvious – let’s try to add a little to that.

By something getting the biggest part of your attention, there is every chance you will not be found listening to things you ought to give your attention to.

Habitual thinking is common to mankind. We have the same approach to things daily. It may be a showering routine. You might make a certain meal one way only. You turn the TV on at the same time to hear the news, because habitually you always do that. You always buy the same meal when eating out and so on.

You may pray – same time every day. All day is good.

When we hear a preacher give his sermon – there is a good chance that your mind can be on something else. Perhaps something that has been on your mind all week.

The preacher may have what you need. But your mind is elsewhere, rather than on what he says.

So you don’t hear. Really hear. You have missed it – the word – the word you needed.

You carry on anyway, and will return another day to hear(?) the preacher again.

Luke 8/8:…When He had said these things He cried, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!”

Consisting of…

CONSISTING OF…

The Christian life consists of thought – word – deed – spiritual experience – and doctrine. (No particular order intended).

Spiritual experience – John 3/

Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

– Acts 2/

1 When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Thought – II Corinthians 10/

casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,

Word – Colossians 3/

And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

Deed – John 3/

21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

Doctrine – Titus 1/

9 …holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict.

All the above is sound medicine incorporating the nature of God.

Incorporating God’s ways, (doctrines) and the fact that in thought, word, and deed, He wants  human beings to experience Him in their lives, He will come to you and I, by invitation only, as we remember that…

8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

(Hebrews 13)

What’s it really about?

What’s it really about?

You might call this a poem – but I doubt that it is.🤔

In the culture I have grown-up in, this ‘list’ might have more application than in other cultures. Nevertheless it’s remarkable how many people get it wrong, when it comes to knowing what Christianity is really about.

You think it is all about good works

Or not drinking

Or not gambling

Or stiff-upper-lipness

Or stiff collars

Or “never never on a Sunday…a Sunday…”

Or giving your money – ‘in’

Or being controlled

Or getting a good scolding

Or wearing your ‘Sunday best’

Or pointing the finger of gossip

Or not smiling

Or wearing hats

Or not dancing

Or not listening to secular music

Or judging others only

Or being supremely better than others

Or not using electricity or modern goods

Or playing with snakes

Or not watching TV

Or…

All this proving you don’t know what it’s really all about.