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From the Pastor's Desk

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Good Morning Pioneer Baptist!

“Now I belong to Jesus!”

It’s a great Gospel song, written by Norman J. Clayton, who was born on January 22, 1903 in Brooklyn, New York, the ninth of ten children. He was converted at the age of six in the South Brooklyn Gospel Church, where his mother had been a foundation member … and was church organist by the age of 12. He kept up the role of church organist for the rest of his life. Clayton’s profession was in the building industry, but he also created his own publishing house, Gospel Songs, which was later absorbed into the Rodeheaver Company. In 1942 he was working with Jack Wyrtzen’s Word of Life organization, providing music for both the radio broadcasts and crusade meetings. That same year Clayton wrote his most popular gospel song, words and music, "Now I Belong to Jesus." Here are some of the great lyrics, starting with the chorus, which forms a conclusion: “Now I belong to Jesus, Jesus belongs to me, Not for the years of time alone, But for eternity.” Then, three great verses 1) Jesus, my Lord will love me forever, From Him no pow'r of evil can sever, He gave His life to ransom my soul; Now I belong to Him; 2) Once I was lost in sin's degradation, Jesus came down to bring me salvation, Lifted me up from sorrow and shame, Now I belong to Him; 3) Joy floods my soul for Jesus has saved me, Freed me from sin that long had enslaved me His precious blood, He came to redeem, Now I belong to Him.”

Clayton obviously has true and accurate (or truly accurate) Scriptural underpinnings for this song, as he did for all the songs he wrote, and there are so many Scriptures that relate to “Now I Belong to Jesus.” Among them is Romans 14:8 “For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord's.

And then there is Ephesians 2:10 “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Talk about belonging to Him! God is Jeremiah’s “Potter” and we are the clay. (The nation of Israel in context, but we claim there is ‘one interpretation and many applications’.”) God has created us in Christ Jesus, we are therefore His workmanship, and while one of His purposes in the ransoming process was to save us from “sin’s degradation,” He also created us unto “good works” and “ordained that we should walk in” those good works. Wow!

We have been “Worked, Willed, and ordered to Walk” with Jesus who walked the streets of this world, did the Father’s will always, and worked out our salvation so wonderfully! We could say we have been Created, Co-ordinated and Commissioned to be Christ’s holy ambassadors, and now, as a result of God’s Divine Procreation, we have a Divine Purpose as given by His Divine Plan!

No wonder “Joy floods our souls!” Amen? (Wow again!)

Love and Prayers to all,


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