Leaning on the Everlasting Arms -The Five Blind Boys of Mississippi

In 1974 we went to a church in Streatham or Brixton where there was singing like this and it felt as close to heaven as you can get with singing. The organ pipes glowed with glory in my eyes, and we hugged people we didn’t know.

“He will cover you with His feathers; under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and rampart.” Psalm 91:4

2 Corinthians 2 14 – May the Fragrance

But thanks be to God, who always leads us triumphantly as captives in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of Him.

This was given to me as a baptismal verse when I was baptised and a member of South Nutfield Free Church. I have lost the card with the verse in fine calligraphy, and my baptism details.

Fragrance is used in the old testament where the fragrance of burnt offerings are pleasing to God. The wise men brought baby Jesus fragrant Frankincense and Myrrh. Catholic church incense is a resin incense of benzoin, frankincense, and myrrh. Mark 14 3 says ‘A woman came with a special sealed jar. It contained very expensive perfume made out of pure nard. She broke the jar open and poured the perfume on Jesus’ head.’ Nard is Spikenard, the distillation of a flower. That was broken on Jesus before he died, and his death was seen as an offering for sinners. The fragrance of the knowledge of him transforms something known into something pleasing to others and God.

This song by Graham Kendrick is may the fragrance of Jesus fill this place.

Love him in the Morning

I woke last night and could not sleep and started singing this song through in my mind. I could not remember the singer but had liked the song when I was aged 17 or 18 and searching this morning on youtube found that somebody has put the song there. The All Day Song ( Love Him in the Morning ) by John Fischer. John has a regular blog at https://catchjohnfischer.live/.

Tempted in the Desert

South Nutfield Free Church does not exist as a physical building. Those of us who once attended there in 1950s-80s will be in their 40s – 100s. Email me (at southnutfieldfreechurch@gmail.com) if you would like to also contribute.

I am currently reading the Old and New Testament in tandem. I have just got to David being made King of Israel in 2 Samuel. I have this morning read Jesus tempted in the desert in Luke 4, with parallels to the Israelites 40 year journey through the wilderness. Each temptation in Luke is answered by Jesus with a text from Deuteronomy and Israel’s wilderness experience.

O Thou Who Camest From Above

This hymn by Charles Wesley is often sung at Pentecost. It comes from an old testament passage in Leviticus 6:13, “The fire must be kept burning on the altar continuously; it must not go out.” (NIV)

This hymn also refers to John Wesley’s “Aldersgate experience” in 1738, when he received an experience of being born again and his heart being warmed by the fire of the Holy Spirit. The celestial fire came from above and kindled a flame in the “altar of my heart.”

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness

The seventh beatitude in Matthew is

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
           for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.