At 5.15 most evenings you will find my wife and I sat watching Pointless. One of the questions last night was about ‘Greats’ and the clue was the ruler of Judea from 37-4BCE. I was so busy puzzling what BCE meant I never got round to answering the questions. Thanks to google I found it means Before Common Era. What???? Apparently BCE has now replaced BC to avoid any reference to Christianity and, in particular, to avoid naming Christ as Lord. For me that is the last straw. We are turning into a heathen country where we cannot mention the name of Jesus, unless it is to take his name in vain. A day I fear I will never see, I fear my children and my grandchildren will never see, when…
At the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, Every tongue confess him, King of glory now. ‘‘Tis the fathers pleasure we should call him Lord, Who from the beginning was the mighty word.
9 One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.” 10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. 11 It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. 12 It had a great, high wall with twelve gates, and with twelve angels at the gates. On the gates were written the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. 13 There were three gates on the east, three on the north, three on the south and three on the west. 14 The wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
15 The angel who talked with me had a measuring rod of gold to measure the city, its gates and its walls. 16 The city was laid out like a square, as long as it was wide. He measured the city with the rod and found it to be 12,000 stadia[c] in length, and as wide and high as it is long. 17 The angel measured the wall using human measurement, and it was 144 cubits[d] thick.[e]18 The wall was made of jasper, and the city of pure gold, as pure as glass. 19 The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth onyx, the sixth ruby, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth turquoise, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst.[f]21 The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl. The great street of the city was of gold, as pure as transparent glass.
22 I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. 24 The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. 25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. 27 Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
There is a land of pure delight, where saints immortal reign, infinite day excludes the night, and pleasures banish pain.
There everlasting spring abides, and never-withering flowers: death, like a narrow sea, divides this heavenly land from ours.
Sweet fields beyond the swelling flood stand dressed in living green: so to the Jews old Canaan stood, while Jordan rolled between.
But timorous mortals start and shrink to cross this narrow sea; and linger, shivering on the brink, and fear to launch away.
O could we make our doubts remove, those gloomy thoughts that rise, and see the Canaan that we love with unbeclouded eyes!
Could we but climb where Moses stood, and view the landscape o’er, not Jordan’s stream, nor death’s cold flood, should fright us from the shore.
16 Don’t you realize that together you have become God’s inner sanctuary[i] and that the Spirit of God makes his permanent home in you?[j]17 Now, if someone desecrates[k] God’s inner sanctuary, God will desecrate him, for God’s inner sanctuary is holy, and that is exactly who you are.
18 So why fool yourself and live under an illusion?[l] Make no mistake about it, if anyone thinks he is wise by the world’s standards, he will be made wiser by being a fool for God![m]19 For what the world says is wisdom is actually foolishness in God’s eyes. As it is written:
The cleverness of the know-it-alls becomes the trap[n] that ensnares them.
20 And again:
The Lord sees right through the clever reasonings of the wise and knows that it’s all a sham.[o]
21 So don’t be proud of your allegiance to any human leader. For actually, you already have everything! It has all been given for your benefit, 22 whether it is Paul or Apollos or Peter the Rock,[p] or whether it’s the world[q] or life or death,[r] or whether it’s the present or the future—everything belongs to you! 23 And now you are joined to the Messiah, who is joined to God.
COME, Saviour Jesus, from above,
Assist me with thy heavenly grace;
Empty my heart of earthly love,
And for thyself prepare the place.
2 O let thy sacred presence fill
And set my longing spirit free,
Which wants to have no other will,
But day and night to feast on thee!
3 Henceforth may no profane delight
Divide this consecrated soul;
Possess it thou, who hast the right,
As Lord and Master of the whole.
4 Wealth, honour, pleasure, and what else
This short-enduring world can give,
Tempt as ye will, my soul repels;
To Christ alone resolved to live.
5 Nothing on earth do I desire
But thy pure love within my breast;
This, only this, do I require,
And freely give up all the rest.
Sing to the Lord a new song, his praise in the assembly of his faithful people.
2 Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; let the people of Zion be glad in their King. 3 Let them praise his name with dancing and make music to him with timbrel and harp. 4 For the Lord takes delight in his people; he crowns the humble with victory. 5 Let his faithful people rejoice in this honor and sing for joy on their beds.
6 May the praise of God be in their mouths and a double-edged sword in their hands, 7 to inflict vengeance on the nations and punishment on the peoples, 8 to bind their kings with fetters, their nobles with shackles of iron, 9 to carry out the sentence written against them— this is the glory of all his faithful people.
Praise the Lord.
1. Praise ye the Lord among His saints, New songs of gladness sing; Let Zion’s children praise and bless Their Maker and their King.
2. Yea, let them praise His blessed Name With all abounding joy, The sounding timbrel and the harp In songs of praise employ.
3. The Lord takes pleasure in His saints, He is His people’s strength, And He will glorify the meek With victory at length.
4. Ye saints, by day and night rejoice, Exult and joyful stand, Jehovah’s praises in your mouth, His sword within your hand.
5. This is the glorious judgment given: His saints shall rule the earth; Then bless the Lord, His glory tell, And celebrate His worth.