Zech. 14:9

The LORD will be king over all the earth; in that day the LORD will be the only one and HIS name will be the only one.    Zech. 14:9


Today we worship strange gods; we have gods of wealth, possessions, material things. We no longer care about our fellow man; we do not know who our neighbours are. We drive along and speak to no one, we just want to be better off than all others. We pay lip service to GOD'S teachings forgetting that we are mere flesh, remembering HIM only when evil befalls us.


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Isaiah 60:1

Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. Isaiah 60:1

Epiphany symbolizes the coming of light into the world. It is traditionally observed as the time of the arrival at JesusÂ’ manger by the Magi or Wise Men from the east. Therefore it not only reminds of the star which heralded his arrival, but also portrays that Jesus is the light of the world. It falls at the end of the Christmas Season.

Today as we close this book of Reflections, this special Watchword for Epiphany reminds us that Jesus is the light of the world and that this light has come into the world. Light has the distinct and characteristic effect of dispelling darkness and showing the way. Therefore, the message in this text is an assurance that help is here.
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Psalm 106:4

Remember me, O Lord, with the favour you have toward your people. O visit me with your salvation.   Psalm 106:4

The angel Gabriel said to Mary "Do not fear, you shall conceive and bring forth a son, and you shall call him Jesus. He will be great and he shall be called the son of the most high, and the Lord will give him the throne of his father David.” (Luke1:30-32)

We must believe that Jesus was born of a virgin and that he is the son of God. His mysterious birth is beyond our understanding.  But we need him to come to us as he promised, enabling us to serve him. He will abide with us daily as we seek to know him by faith.  Let us tell of his goodness, and rejoice in his favour to us.  He will hold all things in his strong but tender hands and he alone can provide us with the way to salvation.  He has already given himself as that special gift.


Dear Lord and Father, as we celebrate this season of Christmas, and the birth of your son Jesus Christ, we want to thank and praise you for sending him into this world to save us. Today we recognize him as the light to the world.  Help us to find your light and live in it.  Amen



Psalm 54:4

Behold, God is mine helper: the Lord is with themthat uphold my soul. Psalm 54:4

In this new year it surely is reassuring to know that the Lord is our helper and to experience him as such. The times have been challenging and continue to be so. The year has begun with the thought of austerity measures in the economic arena. Lay-offs and cut-backs loom imminent. Many challenges lie ahead of us. In the face of such gloom it is good to know that God is our helper.

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Isaiah 53:3


He was despised and rejected by others; a man of suffering and acquainted with infirmity; and as one from whom others hide their faces he was despised, and we held him of no account.   Isaiah 53:3


Let us examine the text for today's Watchword, Isaiah 53:3. It is reference to the promised Messiah and quite aptly describes JesusÂ’ treatment on earth. "He was despised and rejected by others". Jesus son of man was scorned by those who had a low opinion of him. They actually refused to accept him as the promised Messiah of the world. The "others" to whom the writer referred were the Jewish Leaders, mainly the Pharisees and Sadducees. Many of these Jewish leaders did not believe that the promised Messiah had come. Some possible reasons for their opposition towards him could have been:


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Haggai 2:4b


Take courage, all you people of the land, says the Lord; work, for I am with you, says the Lord of host.   Haggai 2:4b


In these trying times when we are faced with so many challenges, we must be strong in the Lord.  There is the economic situation e.g. the losing of jobs, the rising in the cost of living, the financial situation that is looking dim.  The crime rate and the domestic violence are on the increase.  And the natural disaster that our sister lands are experiencing.

All these things make us wonder what is happening to us.  We must not lose faith, we must be reminded of what the psalmist says: “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble; therefore we will not fear.”  God has promised that He will not leave us nor forsake us.  So we must work toward that promise. 

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Psalm 25:20


Guard my life and deliver me; do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.    Psalm 25:20


Does life’s problems from time to time seem to go from bad to worse? If the answer is yes; be assured that God is the only one who can reverse the downward spiral. We, like David, should pray “Turn to me and have mercy, for I put my trust in You.” God knows that because of sin we would encounter problems. He promised to be with us always, so the choice is ours. He will take our problems and turn them into victories, if we ask in faith believing He is able.

God has already made His offer in the person of Jesus the Christ – the gift which we celebrate in this season. The next step is therefore ours. We must have confidence in God and accept Him as our Lord and Saviour and see His ultimate protection at work in and through us. No doubt this is a reassuring thought at the start of this new year!

O most merciful Father, we praise you for the gift of your son Christ Jesus our redeemer through whom we have access. Our dependence is in you and you alone. O God, may we in faith ever trust you to be our refuge in all our circumstances, even to the end of the age.   Amen.


Ezekiel 20:12


I gave them my Sabbaths, as a sign between me and them, so that they might know that I the Lord sanctify them.    Ezekiel 20:12


Business people have contracts between them to ensure that all parties involved are aware of the terms of the agreements. God did such with the provision of Sabbaths for us. Each Sunday we gather for corporate worship or special service, we “renew the contract” between God and us. The terms of the contract are simple – we honour Jesus as God and he will be God to us. That means living righteous lives will result in limitless blessings and eternal life with Jesus when we die. We are prone to stumble sometimes; God forgives that. We are assured that God will maintain his end of the agreement. There is nothing that is impossible for God, so when life seems impossible for the moment, come to Church that Sunday, it confirms God’s “contract” with us to get us through – not always out of – that “impossible” moment. You are extremely special to God. Believe it. That’s why he gave us Jesus. 


Lord Jesus, I love you. It feels good to remember that you feel the same way about me. Thanks for being the greatest brother anybody can ever ask for.   Amen.  



Lamentations 3:31-32


The Lord will not reject forever. Although he causes grief, he will have compassion according to the abundance of his steadfast love.   Lamentations 3:31-32


Sometimes we think that God has forsaken us.  The reminder, as we bring the year to a close, is that he has compassion on us and shows us his constant love.  This is a theme that we will need as we enter and navigate the new year. 

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Amos 6:6


You drink wine by the bowlful and use the finest lotions, but you do not grieve over the ruin of Joseph.   Amos 6:6 (NIV)

During this festive season, we are so caught up in the festivities that the focus and real reason for the celebration is lost. Thus GodÂ’s will is neglected because of our iniquity.

God through his prophet Amos had warned Israel about this when he said, “You drink wine by the bowlful and use the first lotions, but you do not grieve over the ruin of Joseph.” Amos 6:6 (NIV) In other words, a major matter was neglected whilst focus was placed on matters of less importance and matters that satisfied their own fleshly desires.

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Genesis 12:2


The Lord said to Abram, “I will bless you and you will be a blessing.”   Genesis 12:2 (NIV)


The blessings promised to Abram were many: A good reputation; a great nation through his descendants; blessings for his allies. However, they were preceded by a command from the Lord to gather his family, leave his home and proceed to a new land.  Most would think this an arduous task for someone of seventy-five, but, without question or complaint, Abram obeyed. So steadfast was he that even when commanded to sacrifice his only son Isaac he obeyed, trusting that the Lord would guide his path and provide every need. 

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Judges 5:31


Lord, may all who love you be like the sun when it rises in its strength.   Judges 5:31 (NIV)


How Sad!
There are some folks who have no time, no place, no reverence for God - a God who is always good and just and who is love! They count themselves his enemy. They refuse his claims on their lives. They will perish.

How Sublime!  
Others accept and enjoy his favour. They walk in his fear and he is their strong hold. They love him and prove it by their worship and their service.

So God makes their lives as the noonday sun. They bring light and warmth into a world which also ultimately need God's smile. This is the basis for rest – for peace. Peace in our lives as individuals, peace in our communities, peace in our land. Peace such as the Son of God, by his coming to earth, offers.

O God, help us to understand and acquire your peace so that our lives may shine with the brightness of the sun.   Amen.


Isaiah 37:16

O Lord of hosts, you are god, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; you have made heaven and earth.   Isaiah 37:16


“Joy to the world the Lord is come
Let earth receive her king.”        
(Isaac Watts, Hymn 65 in Trial Moravian Hymnal)

Some 2000 years ago he came to us in human form. This we celebrated yesterday.  He came to us as a representative of our Lord, the creator of all mankind and all life here on earth. Our Lord sent his only Son in human form and stature from baby-hood, through childhood, and onto adulthood.

Why did our Lord do this? 


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Psalm 66:12


You let people ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water; yet you have brought us out to a spacious place.   Psalm 66:12


This Psalm is very personal and passionate. It plumbs the depths of human suffering and sorrow as well as explores the heights of human ecstasy and joy. The Psalmist, looks beyond his trials and sings loud praises to God for all the blessings in his life. Truly this is great encouragement and strength for all who are in the midst of struggles.

The theme of verse 12 is deliverance. It tells about trouble and GodÂ’s power to deliver us from that trouble and from the depths of despair.

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Psalm 68:19


Praise be to the Lord, to God our Saviour, who daily bears our burdens.   Psalm 68:19


Many of us lead very hectic lifestyles, rushing from meeting to meeting, from activity to activity.  For some of us the mere thought of the day’s activities makes us want to curl up in bed, go back to sleep and hope that the day’s burdens will all go away.  But as we know, this is just wishful thinking or is it?  God is well aware of our situation and our daily struggles and he wants to help us to get through them and come out victorious and better off than we were before.  God’s word is full of promises:

“When you pass through the water, I will be with you;When you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you; And when you pass through the fire, you will not be burned. The flames will not set you ablaze.”   Isa. 43:2

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