The Good Shepherd written by Ruth Dickson.

The Good Shepherd.

John 10:1-18
In John 10, Jesus describes himself as the Door through which the Sheep go through. He also defines Himself
as the true Shepherd, who genuinely comes through the door, unlike the false one, who seeks entrance through the window.

Deception:

A “thief” and a “robber” knows he will never be allowed into a person’s home to carry  out evil intentions. The false Shepherd knows if he makes his intentions known, he will be rejected. The false Shepherd comes into the Sheepfold with only one intention, and that is to rob and deceive you (John 10:10).

Meat, Flax and Wool:

There are two sorts of people who work on a Sheep farm.
There are those who nurture, lead, guide and feed the Sheep, in other words (they take care of the Sheep). There are also those who only keep Sheep for what they can extract from the Sheep: the Sheeps Meat, Flax and Wool – in other words – (they keep the Sheep for the sole purpose of material gain).

This is a picture of the two kinds of Shepherds you will find in the Body of Christ today.

The emblems of a True Shepherd:

The True Shepherd will go after his sheep when they are lost. The True Shepherd often goes into places he would not ordinarily go into, to find lost Sheep. The True Shepherd  prevails in extraordinary prayers for his Sheep, they very often get into very complex and difficult situations. The True
Shepherd cares for the Sheep and is concerned about the worries and cares of the Sheep.

A real Shepherd will fight off foxes and wolves which try to break through the fence to kill and eat the Sheep. This is the same way the True Shepherd behaves. He is fiercely protective over the flock God has given him. He will not allow them to be exploited.

The True Shepherd guides his Sheep, leading them in the paths of righteousness. The True Shepherd is ultimately concerned about the condition of the souls of his Sheep.  The True Shepherd feeds his Sheep and loves them, as Christ has commanded him to feed and love them. (John 21:17).

“Oil for the Journey” – Volume 2

Excerpt from Ruth Dickson’s Daily Devotional, “Oil for the Journey” Volume 2

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Blessed are your eyes and ears written by Ruth Dickson.

Blessed are your eyes and ears.

“Blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears for they hear, for assuredly, I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.” – Matthew 13:16

How do we see and how do we hear?

By the Spirit of God, the Word is first of all received and then revealed in our hearts. What is happening on the inside of us will inevitably be revealed on the outside. It is impossible for God’s Word not to bear fruit in our lives. If you bear no fruit, it means the seed has been sown on stony or thorny ground (Matthew 13:1-9). The Word of God never changes, but our understanding of it does.

Psalm 119:18 says, “Open my eyes that I may see the wonderful things in God’s Word.” God’s Word should bear much fruit in our lives.

 God’s Word, is a seed, that we need to read and hear daily. It needs to fall on good ground and bear much fruit and produce a deeply rooted work in our souls. I pray that God’s Word will fall on good soil.

May God bless your eyes and your ears so that you can hear and see, clearly. Amen (Matthew 13:16).

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Excerpt from Ruth Dickson’s Daily Devotional, “Oil for the Journey,” Volume 2

Why did Jesus speak in parables? Written by Ruth Dickson

Why did Jesus speak in parables?

Preceding Matthew 13:11, the disciples came to Jesus and asked Him why He spoke in parables (Matthew 13:10). The disciples asked a very valid question, it’s one which many believers still ask today.

Jesus used parables on purpose for many reasons, the main reason being so that those who listened would think deeply about His words, desire to know more and gain greater spiritual understanding.

Parables make you reason and think because they are not straight forward illustrations or responses. While Jesus preached, anyone determined in their heart not to listen, would go away empty.\

 “Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them.” (Matthew 13:11)

 While Jesus had followers who genuinely desired to know Him and gain understanding of the gospel He preached, there were others who followed Him to catch Him at His words. They were mischief makers with blind eyes. Their hearts resisted the truth of the gospel. They had the outward show of religion, but no grace in their hearts. The mysteries of God’s kingdom were revealed to some of Christ’s followers, while it was concealed from others.

 Christ, as God in the flesh, was a mystery that many could not comprehend. It is still a mystery today, as many do not believe in Salvation through Christ alone. To be saved by Grace, through Christ alone, means you have to let go of the idea of Salvation through any other means. You have to let go of good works, ceremonies, religious undertakings, ideologies and conceptions of how a person can be reconciled to God. There is only one pathway to Heaven and that is through Christ, the Lamb that was slain for the sins of the world. In Christ alone hope is found. Salvation is by grace, through faith in Christ. Through Faith in Christ, we inherit all that God has promised.

Matthew 13:11

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Excerpt from Ruth Dickson’s Daily Devotional: “Oil for the Journey” Volume two

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Spiritual Understanding Written by Ruth Dickson

Spiritual  Understanding. Isaiah 6:9

The gospel can be preached, but refused and rejected, by the closing of the heart and the blocking of the ears. This was the case in the time of the Prophet Isaiah. He was sent to a people who hardened their hearts and deafened their ears (Isaiah 6). Isaiah prophesied; that when Christ came, they would keep on hearing, but not understand. They would see, but not perceive anything he said (Isaiah 6:9).

When Christ walked on the earth the Jews of the synagogue, which comprised the Church at that time, rejected the gospel Christ preached. These religious men believed in good works and did not understand Christ’s Mission for the salvation of souls. They did not understand Christ’s purpose of redemption. Christ fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy in Isaiah 6:9, many people were not able to receive, perceive or understand Christ’s words or sayings.

God wants us to benefit from scripture. Our devotion time and the preaching we hear is very important. The voice of the Holy Spirit is our Guide, while we live on earth. It is the Spirit of God who gives us spiritual understanding. The soil that seeds are sown into must be good soil to produce good fruit. The children of God have seeds of righteousness planted in their soul.  It is grace that keeps it there and it is grace that enables, what is seen and heard, to produce much fruit. Those who are born of God do not continue to sin, but walk in God’s righteousness (1John 3:9).

Excerpt from Ruth Dickson’s Daily Devotional “Oil for the Journey” Volume 2

 Isaiah 6:9

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Break Open Your Word – By Ruth Dickson

“Break open your Word and let the light shine out.”

 Psalm 119:130

As I looked through the living room window, early hours of the morning, I saw such a beautiful picture. The brightest ray of sunlight, shone piercingly, between the hedges, through the wooden gate. Every other part of my front garden was dark, except the pathway where the beam of light shone.

The brilliance of God’s Word brings light into darkness. Wherever light has an entrance, it will shine radiantly. On the other hand, the ray of light can be blocked out, just like when a cluster of heavy dark clouds blocks out the sunlight. Dark clouds will obstruct the flow of light, even on the brightest of sunny days.

 Is there anything in your heart and mind that creates a road block to you receiving God’s Word? Pride, even spiritual pride, prejudice, worldliness, waywardness, busyness – just to name a few– can clog the heart and mind, presenting an obstacle, to the entrance of God’s Word. The Word of God is just like that beam of light that shines through my front garden every morning. It brightens up everything in its pathway. I pray that your mind will be like an open door where the brightness of God’s Word shines through. May God’s Spirit chase away anything that shouldn’t be there.

Amen

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© Ruth Dickson

Excerpt from “Oil for the Journey” – Volume 2

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Faithful and True; God will not forsake you! Written by Ruth Dickson.

Faithful and True; God will not forsake you!

That, one man should bear the burden and be the sacrifice, once and for all… was the price that Jesus had to pay…  Jesus was beaten and betrayed. As He stood before Caiaphas,  a sorrowful,  yet Prophetic declaration was made. It foreshadowed what was to come… (John 18:14).

Lord and King; He remained Faithful:

Jesus Christ, an innocent man, was jeered at by a sinful crowd. The Chief Priests and Pharisees  were manipulated by envy and jealousy. Jesus was mocked, slapped and abused by His own creation, though ruler of all. In Humility, He took it all and He gave Himself willingly. He carried the Sin of this world.   They tore at His physical robes, but they could not remove His spiritual ones.  He remained Lord and King forever. Never at any point did Jesus lose His Majesty.

He will never forsake you:

 Jesus looked forsaken, but in reality He never left His magnificent throne.  His broken body masked His Majesty. He was Lord when they laughed at Him and remained King when they killed Him. He was who He said He was.

Though the world around you may look dim and dark, remember Him, whose name is King. God’s presence is ever present with you. God’s presence was with Christ  on the Cross, though to the whole world, it looked as if God had forsaken Him. God will never relinquish His hold on you, child of God, He is holding your hand and will see you through. God has not forsaken you.

© Ruth Dickson

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“Oil for the Journey” by Ruth Dickson.

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The Glory of Living for God written by Ruth Dickson.

THE GLORY OF LIVING FOR GOD.

William Tyndale, was the first person to translate the Bible directly from Hebrew and Greek text into English. William Tyndale developed a love for scripture very early. Born in Gloucester, his family moved to Oxford, where he later studied at Oxford University. He also attended Cambridge. William was a linguist. As well as English, he spoke several languages:  French, Greek, Hebrew, German, Italian, Latin and Spanish. 

William Tyndale had a vision. In his heart, he saw a picture of the ordinary man and woman on the street having access to, and owning, a Bible.  However, it was forbidden, it was illegal.  The reading of scripture was restricted to, Latin speaking, educated Clergy. In 1523, William Tyndale visited the then Bishop of London for support and protection, but was betrayed, denounced and branded a heretic.

William Tyndale’s desire to translate the Bible into English, for the ordinary man and woman on the street, could not be stopped. He fled to Hamburg in 1524, where he persevered and the first prints of his translation were produced by 1525 and reached South East England and London, by 1526.

By 1535, William Tyndale was arrested and by 1536, he was strangled and burnt at the stake. Even in his death, God’s plan prevailed. William Tyndale’s astute translations of the Bible from Greek and Hebrew helped the reformation. Many scholars had their eyes opened and William Tyndale’s work on the New Testament got printed in vast quantities and spread all over England.

Be encouraged! Do not be alarmed when you go through trials as a follower of Jesus Christ. Until Christ returns, the persecution and betrayal of true followers of Christ will continue. As a believer, you must be ready. The Apostle Peter speaks of, “the Spirit of glory and of God,” upon those who are insulted for Christ (1 Peter 4: 13, 14). The glory of God rests upon the shoulders of those who proclaim Christ’s majesty. No man can curse, what God has blessed. There are no apologies to be made for the teaching of scripture and sharing of God’s Word in every language. It is to be done with great boldness and clarity.

It is truly a privilege to serve the Lord. Don’t you know the Spirit of glory and God, shines all around you, a piercing light for the whole world to see? When Christ is given His proper place, the glory comes down. I encourage you to give God His rightful place, without fear of slander or persecution. The Word of God must be preached, the Bible must be read in every language.

The battle is won, Christ is victorious!

© Ruth Dickson

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PUT YOUR EYES ON CHRIST by Ruth Dickson.

PUT YOUR EYES ON CHRIST… I fear many of you may fall by the wayside, if the Lord tarries…

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Brothers and Sisters in Christ, I encourage you this hour to persevere in your race. Don’t let go of the promises of God. Don’t look back and don’t give up!  Run your race with endurance, because you will need it, especially at this hour. The devil is on a rampage like a hungry roaring lion, looking for weak and tired Sheep to devour. Remember, you are God’s Sheep. Close ranks God’s people, and  pray for one another, without ceasing.

Remember, your strength is in the Lord. He covers you.  His name is a strong tower, He is your refuge.  He is your provider. God will supply all of your needs, do not be anxious.  Are you sick?  His name is Healer, the Lord is the One who heals you. His mercy has prevailed.

This is the hour to press on and be determined to win your race… Walk hand in hand, with  the Spirit of  God… just  keep marching on.

Son and daughter of God, you must stand firm till the end.  As the  Bride of Christ, you  will  be presented before your King, spotless without a stain or wrinkle. Your journey is not in vain. Your hope in Christ is not false hope, it is ASSURED. Do not give up and do not give in.

13 But the one who stays true to the end will be saved”- Matthew 24:13

© Ruth Dickson

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“You are the God who sees me,” said Hagar. –Genesis 16:1-15 written by Ruth Dickson

“You are the God who sees me,” said Hagar. –Genesis 16:1-15

The book of Genesis hosts a somewhat controversial story of a woman who gave God a name… The writer of Genesis thought it a story worthy of record; to etch it in history, for the whole world to see.

Hagar, an Egyptian maid-servant, met the “angel of the Lord” by a spring of water.

The Spirit of the Lord, is a Spring of Life to all who drink from Him. In this case, the angel of the Lord found Hagar. He met her in her wilderness and spoke life over her.

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What a story of Grace!

 Hagar, a maid and least in her society, found mercy and grace, where she least expected it. Do you know God reaches out to the least in society, He goes out of His way to fight for the disenfranchised. God speaks on behalf of those who face injustice. God saves the souls of those who are lost.

What a wilderness experience!

So much so, that Hagar gave Yahweh (God) a name, recorded in history forever. “She gave this name to the LORD who spoke to her”: EL ROI.

“You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.” (EL ROI).

© Ruth Dickson

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“OIL FOR THE JOURNEY” Daily Bible Devotional VOLUME 2:

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