Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 October 2012 Deuteronomy 31:6

Deuteronomy 31:6.    Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail nor forsake thee.

Oh Friends, the negative saga of ‘Frankenstorm’ Sandy continues. Thankfully it’s been toned down some, but the unfortunate effects are still being felt all over Central and Eastern North America. Hopefully in a couple more days it will finally dissipate and leave us to recover and rebuild. Deaths and damage are still piling up, but that’s par for the course. And if we consider that it could have been worse, then we’ll have a sliver of daylight to hang on to. The Lord in His LOVING-kindness must have heard the prayers of many righteous and mitigated the disastrous effects that Sandy could have caused. Let’s hold on to that thought for good measure nuh. Now here’s a rather significant quote from Mayor Bloomberg as He assessed the damage wreaked by Sandy on the mighty City of New York. He rightly declares: ‘Nature is an awful lot more powerful than we are.’ And that’s an undeniable truth Friends! I only wish a whole lot more of us, especially those in positions of power would recognize that. And then, I ‘d like to ask Mr. Bloomberg and all the leaders of the nations, whom they think controls those powerful forces of nature? Oh my people, there’s ONLY ONE RIGHT answer to the question: ALMIGHTY GOD! The same ONE who created the universe and the very forces of nature. And yuh know Friends, until the majority of the world’s population wakes up and realizes that fact, then attempts to live in harmony with it, our world will be under constant attack, because our righteous and just God WILL NOT allow us to continue wallowing in the mire of sin, as we’re so effervescently and happily doing today. Last year we experienced Hurricane Irene who did billions of dollars worth of damage and caused many lives to be lost, but we never used that as a wake up call. Now we have Sandy, who first rose up from the South, then came North on an unfamiliar path to meet two other storms coming from other directions, to become the first storm of that kind we’ve ever experienced. And I ask Friends, will our response be any better than it was to Irene, or will we continue in the same, evil, sinful, ungodly manner as before? Ah mih people, I sure hope we use this as a wake up call, otherwise the next disaster might just be much worse. And did you notice Sandy’s timing; a week before the Presidential Elections in the U.S.? That’s going to cause even more confusion than there already was. But my faithful brethren, with all that negativity surrounding us, there’s still no need to fear, because our mighty, wise and ever-LOVING God is still in control of His universe. And He WILL definitely do as He promised long ago in our Bit, if we acknowledge and live by it. ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail nor forsake thee.’ Now can you imagine the natural fear and despair that gripped a large portion of the Caribbean and North America before Sandy landed, and is still gripping us after this overwhelming catastrophe? Yes Friends, it’s only normal to fear what we don’t know and/or understand. However, true believers in Jesus Christ won’t allow any fear to stop their progress, because they have the awesome promises of Jehovah God to stand on. And as Sister Joyce ( Joyce Meyer) likes to say, even if we’re fearful, but it’s God’s command, then we should do it afraid. And that makes sense. But now let’s check out some scriptures on fear, that also give us the ONLY antidote for it, FAITH. We’ll begin with Isaiah, as he talks about the final restoration of Israel. ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’ (Is.41:10) And if that doesn’t lift your spirits, then listen to these true and stirring words of Bruh Paul to Timothy, words that we all know, but don’t seem to take very seriously. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7) And if that still doesn’t move you, let’s hear Peter, as he declares: ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.’ (1 Pet.5:6-7) Yes Friends, our God does care greatly for us, otherwise He would not have sacrificed His ONLY Son Jesus for us, but we have to live according to His directives, for He’s the BOSS! Just like our earthly bosses will reprimand or fire us if we don’t do as they say, our God will reprimand and punish us if we’re not obedient to His dictates. And we’ll end with the last words Jesus said to His disciples as He gave them the Great Commission. ‘…and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt.28:20b) Oh my people, if you can’t believe and take comfort in the words of those men of great faith, and also in Jesus’ promise, then I don’t know what else to say, except may the Lord have mercy on you, and work a miracle in your soul, so that you can truly believe in His faithful promises, and sincerely act on them without fear, but rather – in FAITH. Much LOVE!…do be aware…and do care…but please, please don’t fear…or despair… P.S. Due to time and space constraints, I couldn’t include these scriptures, but please read them on your own, as they will be very valuable, re the fear aspect. (Is.43: 1-5; Phil.4:6-7) Much LOVE!
 
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Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 October 2012 Deuteronomy 31:6

Deuteronomy 31:6.     Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee. 
 
Ah Friends, another chapter in our calamitous times is being written, thanks to ‘Frankenstorm’ Sandy. She’s had a hand in at least ten deaths in the U.S. and one so far in Canada, where in Toronto yesterday, a Staples sign blew down in the 60 kilometres per hour winds and struck her. What a sad way to go. Meanwhile Sandy came ashore in New Jersey yesterday, lashing the Eastern U.S. coast with merciless winds and rain. Millions of people are without power now, and flooding is escalating. And the sad part is that though Sandy has been downgraded to a Tropical Storm, she’s not done yet. To put it nicely, we still have a couple days of inclement weather left. Now can you imagine if Sandy had retained its hurricane status? The whole Eastern coast of North America is being lashed with powerful winds and much rain, snow is even predicted in some areas. That would just put the icing, both literally and figuratively on the cake. Thankfully, so far in my area it’s been mostly gusting wind since yesterday afternoon, though still at a level we can handle, and hopefully it won’t reach epic proportions. The wind seems to have been blowing away some of the rain. I went out on my porch around 4.30 a.m. and surprisingly found my Toronto Star newspaper out there as usual, though they had warned that it might be late because of the weather. But Friends, while we on the East Coast of the continent have been perplexed and perturbed by Sandy, the residents on the northern part of the West Coast have been worried about a 7.7 magnitude earthquake that took place some 40 kilometres off the coast of British Columbia on Saturday. A tsunami warning had been issued, but thankfully nothing came of it, except bickering and confusion in B.C. where it’s claimed the U.S. warning came a whole half an hour before the Canadian, although they knew about the earthquake and its possible repercussions at the same time as the U.S. Obviously the Provincial Government and its agencies claim that they acted responsibly, while the local governments and the people who would have been targeted by the tsunami, claim otherwise. Oh mih people, what’s happening to us eh? In these supposedly modern and revolutionary times, when we can do all sorts of technological wonders, we still can’t get together rationally and solve common problems. As someone told me last night, the Lord’s sending us a message, but we’re not listening. And that could certainly be gospel Friends! Times have become so fearful that many are afraid to walk the roads even in broad daylight, because evil is no longer hiding under the cover of darkness, but has become so emboldened that it’s operating openly in the light now. However my brethren, there’s ONE, and ONLY ONE antidote for Fear, that’s FAITH! FAITH IN ALMIGHTY GOD! As our Bit so encouragingly and appropriately declares: ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee.’ What part of that don’t we understand eh Friends? If we truly believe in the all-powerful, faithful God we profess to worship, then we should calmly accept such an awesome promise, and consequently there shouldn’t be any fear in our souls, for the Lord has proven His power and faithfulness time and time again. I guess the problem is that a majority of the population don’t believe in the Most High God Jehovah, and those who do, don’t have sufficient faith to stand the rigours of these troubled times. So without further ado, let’s check out some scriptures, re handling fear with faith building. And we’ll begin with Moses reminding the Israelites of their sad, fearful behaviour on their journey from Egypt to the Promised Land. ‘Then I said unto you, Dread not, neither be afraid of them. The Lord your God which goeth before you, he shall fight for you, according to all that he did for you in Egypt before your eyes; And in the wilderness, where thou hast seen how that the Lord thy God bare (carried) thee, as a man doth bear his son, in all the way that ye went, until ye came unto this place. Yet in this thing ye did not believe the Lord your God.’ (Deut.1:29-32) Oh Friends, that’s certainly a telling reproach against the Israelites! The Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt is possibly the greatest exhibition of our God’s great powers, His unending LOVE, and also His powerful anger at continual sin and disobedience. That’s shown in the wandering of Israel for forty years in the desert, culminating with the death of all but Caleb and Joshua of the old generation that came out of Egypt. If anybody in this entire world should have believed in Almighty God, it should have been them, having seen the mighty works He did on their behalf. But obviously they did not, and sadly today we are doing the same thing my people; living in fear, when we have God’s awesome promises to stand faithfully and secure on. We talk up a storm about God, but don’t reflect that talk in our actions, that’s why we’re still so fearful. Now listen to Bruh David’s advice to cousin Sol, when he handed over the throne of Israel to him. ‘Only the Lord give thee wisdom and understanding, and give thee charge concerning Israel, that thou mayest keep the law of the Lord thy God. Then shalt thou prosper, if thou takest heed to fulfill the statutes and judgements which the Lord charged (commanded) Moses with concerning Israel: be strong, and of good courage; dread not, nor be dismayed.’ (1 Chr.22:12-13) Oh Friends what absolutely wise words from a father to a son, especially from one who actually lived the words he spoke, under the calming umbrella of God’s faithfulness. And when Cousin Sol followed them, he became the greatest, wisest and richest king that ever lived! However, in his old age, when he strayed from his father’s words and rebelled against the Lord God of his fathers for the heathen gods of his wives, he lost God’s favour. It’s ever so simple and true Friends: stay faithful to God, and He will stay faithful to you, and under those circumstances, there’s no reason to be overwhelmed by fear. Please, let’s write that indelibly in our hearts, minds and spirits, so that we can continuously recall it, and thus not live in fear. Much LOVE!…we say again…the ONLY thing to conquer fear…is TRUE FAITH in Jehovah God…
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 October 2012 Deuteronomy 31:6

Deuteronomy 31:6.     Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
 
Oh Friends, blessed greetings on this cold, wet, uninspiring Monday morning! (smile) And plenty thanks be to our wonderful God also, He who so LOVINGLY looks after all our needs! I do hope that all of us who are slated to receive some of ‘Frankenstorm’ Sandy’s wrath have battened down our hatches and made good preparations to withstand the onslaught. Meanwhile, for those of you who have already experienced its ravages, I hope and pray that you are being strong in faith and doing your best to get yourselves back together again. And the rest of you, please pray some righteous, earnest, heart-felt prayers that Sandy doesn’t do nearly as much damage as he or she is scheduled to do. Now Sandy hasn’t even gotten close to me as yet, and I’m already experiencing a bigger leak than normal in the laundry room of my basement. Ah Lord eh! And to make matters worse, the wind and rain is not allowing my fix-it-all guy to get up on the roof, where we suspect the problem lies. But if that’s the biggest damage I suffer, then I’ll gladly live with it. And remember Friends, in the simple, but oh so wise words of the old sage – this too shall pass. So let’s invoke our Bit right now to help us in our time of anxiety. ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ Yes Friends, fear is a major factor in all of our lives these days, it’s just that some handle it better, through FAITH and PRAYER, than others. And with that in mind, this first day of our new workweek, when many are afraid of the pending calamity, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, so that our fearful, lazy, bluesy spirits can be lifted, that they may soar like eagles heavenwards together with our prayer, and embolden us, regardless of the circumstances we face, to go out into the unfriendly, ungodly world and make a significant mark for Jesus. All together now, as the harmonious earthly choir that we are. (smile) ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ There we go my People! All of heaven was pleased with our heady effort! No excuses now for not getting out in a good, strong, faithful, courageous frame of mind. Oh, before we go any further, let me apologize for a typo yesterday. When I quoted the Lord’s command to Joshua, that His Word should constantly be in his mouth, I associated it with Josh.1:9, instead of Josh.1:8. Mea Culpa! Ah Friends, when sin came into the world, it brought fear with it; a sad lack of confidence in many aspects of our lives. But the caring and understanding Deity we serve and worship, realized our human frailty and gave us an outlet to conquer fear through His Holy Word. And throughout the Good Book, especially in the Old Testament, there are numerous examples of God’s assurance to His chosen people. Possibly the most reassuring of all God’s assurances on fear is when Pharaoh’s army was about to overtake the Israelites as they approached the Red Sea, on their journey out of centuries of bondage in Egypt. Although they had witnessed the calamities that the Lord had rained down on Egypt because of Pharaoh’s refusal to let them go, they nonetheless cried out in great fear to Moses, saying it would have been better to remain in slavery in Egypt than to die in the wilderness, cruelly slaughtered in their helpless state by the Egyptian army. But what was Moses’ response? ‘And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation (deliverance) of the Lord, which he will show to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace (be quiet).’ (Ex.14:13-14) And we all know how the Lord instructed Moses to lift his rod over the Red Sea, and it was parted, allowing the Israelites to walk over on dry land. However, the Egyptian army was totally annihilated when they tried to cross over, as the Lord rejoined the waters. Up to this day Friends, I believe that’s the most awesome miracle the Lord’s ever done, both in terms of emotional drama as well as sheer physical size. I’ve forgotten the exact figures quoted by people who studied the situation, but it required several miles of space between the waters for some two million Israelites, plus all their animals and household belongings to cross in one night. Now Friends, if you had personally experienced such a miracle, would you have ever had any further doubts in the amazing power, strength and LOVING-kindness of the God of your fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? I’d hope not. But unfortunately the Israelites were so fickle and faithless that they complained all the way to the Promised Land, even though the Lord miraculously led them by a pillar of fire at nights, and a cloud by day and also provided food (manna) and water for them along the way. Then when they finally arrived at the border of the Promised Land, they were too scared to go over the Jordan and fight for it, as the Lord instructed. They listened to ten of the twelve spies they sent to reconnoitre the land, who claimed that though the land was fruitful and prosperous, the inhabitants were too big for them to conquer. That’s why they wondered in the wilderness for forty years until all of the generation that had left Israel had died. ONLY Joshua and Caleb, the two spies who voted to go in and fight, ever set foot on the Promised Land. Even poor Moses, after so much struggle with the Israelites, was only allowed to see it from a far off hill, because of his disobeying God’s order to talk to the rock and not strike it at the waters of Meribah-kadesh. (Num. 20:11-13) Ah mih people, such is the negative effect of fear. Please, let’s not allow it to conquer us. Much LOVE!…the only thing that conquers fear…FAITH IN ALMIGHTY GOD…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit October 28 2012 Deuteronomy 31:6

Deuteronomy 31:6.    Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
 
Oh Friends, a blessed Sunday morning to all you beautiful believers in Christ Jesus! I hope we all gave Him thanks for so kindly allowing us to experience another day on Planet Earth, for that’s His due. I also hope that we’re primed and ready to receive His daily blessings and to walk worthy of Him on this October day, regardless of the weather or our personal circumstances. But despite all the promises, blessings and assurances of our omnipotent God, a major portion of the world’s population is still living in dreadful fear because of the numerous negative problems we face. Tragedy and chaos abound all over; from wars to rumours of wars, oppression and suppression of all types, serious economic trials and setbacks, worldwide religious contention, plus natural, man-made and God-sent disasters, to name a little of the calamity that’s currently driving us to fear, death and destruction. Yes Friends, our world is now being run over and ruled by negative influences which unfortunately creates a lot of fear, tension and anxiety. And sadly, a lot of believers are caught up in that negative cycle. But though we need to be realistic about what’s happening in and around us, we don’t have to be overwhelmed or totally overcome by circumstances in general, or our particular problems, because we have the unbreakable promise of the Most High God Jehovah that He will look after those who accept His sovereignty through belief in His Most Wonderful Son Jesus. From way back when He adopted the children of Israel as His chosen people, He assured them with promises of strength, provision and faithfulness, if they would serve and worship Him with clean hearts and right spirits. Our Bit is one such promise reiterated by Moses to his people, just before his death. ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ Oh my brethren, what greater assurance can we ask for eh? But how Moses must have sorrowed in his heart, knowing the people’s penchant for fear and fickleness. And right after our Bit: ‘Moses called unto Joshua, and said unto him in the sight of all Israel, Be strong and of a good courage: for thou must go with this people unto the land which the Lord hath sworn unto their fathers to give them; and thou shalt cause them to inherit it. And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.’ (Deut.31:7-8) Ah mih people, what encouragement and assurance Moses tried to give young Joshua as he passed the baton of leadership to him. But Joshua must have understood all that because he had been Moses’ second in command and no doubt had seen the great things the Lord had done. However, our God is so kind and considerate that after Moses died, He called Joshua aside and had a heart to heart chat with him, promising: ‘There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so will I be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance (you shall give as a possession) the land which I sware unto their fathers to give them. Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper (have success or act wisely) withersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:5-7) Wow! What powerful promises my brethren! But the Lord constantly warns Joshua to be strong and courageous; twice in the last two verses, and again in verse 9: ‘Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.’ Oh my brethren, since neither our God or His dictates change, that means those powerful words of assurance are also part and parcel of our spiritual heritage, therefore we should also be strong and of a good courage, and not afraid nor dismayed, because our God goes with us wherever we go. So why are we still so fearful these days eh? Granted life is difficult, but if the Creator and Ruler of the universe tells us to have faith and courage in Him, and we’ve seen His faithfulness over the ages, why do we still falter and fear instead of standing strong and courageous as He instructs? Is it because our faith isn’t as strong as it should be and/or we’re just wallowing in self-pity, because it’s so much easier to hold our heads and wail, ‘Woe is me?’ I suspect though, that the real reason why we’re so scared of life and what it entails nowadays, is because we’re not following another of the direct commands that the Lord gave Joshua the day He anointed him leader. ‘This book of the law shall not depart out of (shall constantly be in) thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then shalt thou make thy way prosperous, and then shalt thou have good success.’ (Josh.1:8) Oh my people, it’s right there in black and white: obey the Lord and you’ll have success wherever you go. But we don’t do that, yet we still expect to be successful. That’s not how God’s universe works my brethren. Now hear some appropriate words on the subject from the scholars. ‘The Lord’s charge to Joshua is repeated from Deut.31:6-7, 23). The divine call is not only for manly courage but for a courageous faith centred in the word of God. (cf. 1 Chr.22:11-13; 28:20; Ps.27:13-14; 31;23-24) As the psalmist would later point out, true success comes from meditating deeply on God’s Word. (cf. Ps.1:2-3; 119:72, 97, 147, 148) Paul likewise encourages all believers to “quit you like men, be strong” (1 Cor.16:13)  Oh Friends, I know that these are particularly rough and tough times, but that’s exactly why we need to get in agreement with God’s Word, so that we can be reassured of His faithful promises in our times of need. So please look up the scriptures noted above that they may help us to avoid the fear that’s so prevalent all over the world right now. Remember that Jesus said, though we’ll have trials and tribulation, we should not be afraid, but instead be of good cheer, because He has already overcome the world. (John 16:33) Well true believers, true followers of Christ, let’s take that advice and put it into action nuh! For then, and only then will be truly walking our faith. Much LOVE!…who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?… (1 John 5:5)
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 October 2012 Jude 3

Jude 3.    Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.

Ah Friends, another serious calamity is in our midst; Hurricane Sandy. Now whether Sandy is specifically God sent to shake us up in our ungodliness, or it’s just a natural natural disaster, isn’t important at this time. What’s important is that after running over Jamaica, Cuba, the Bahamas and some of Haiti (poor Haiti), killing about forty people in the Caribbean, he or she is now heading for the North American East Coast and early next week, in time for Halloween (Oct.30) is expected to turn into a ‘Frankenstorm’ as it meets up with another storm of cold air coming down from the north. Hn! And though Sandy is now at a Category 1 status, this hybrid monster storm is expected to do about a billion dollars of damage, if not so much through its wind power, certainly through the rain and flood water it will deliver and cause. So all you Friends along the East coast and close inland areas, please be prepared for strong winds and plenty water in the next few days. Please be careful, as they say it could prove to be more dangerous and damaging than Irene last year. Ah Lord! What’s next eh! It calls for plenty praying mih people! But enough about Sandy, right now I want to apologize to Randall (Randy) Lee, the short, stocky Trinidadian of Chinese descent, my one time pan leader at the U.W.I Mona campus in Jamaica, who died last week in Trinidad. Sorry Randy mih brother for not mentioning you before, but being the quiet, patient, easy going, not given to seeking the limelight person you were, I know you’ll understand. But how can I not say a few words on Randy’s behalf and send out some condolences to his family, when he played a decent part in my young life at the University. Just getting me to commit to beating bass in the steelband with its strong focus and discipline, surely improved my own focus and discipline. And though I wasn’t the greatest bass man, between Randy and Shirley Wylie, they made me adequate. The good thing about Randy is that he wasn’t a loud mouth, abusive leader, but led by example, though there were times when he lost it. But any pan leader will tell you that’s just the nature of the beast. And for those of you who know how hard it is to get disciplined people to beat pan, or inject it into them afterwards, just imagine the headache of getting university students from various disciplines and different walks of life to do it. But Randy Lee did it, even with his own heavy work load of medical studies. I can still see him beating his tenor pan in the pan room with a burning cigarette hanging loosely from his lips. Through his disciplined leadership and Joe Ramsaran’s managerial talent, they made the Playboys Steelband locally famous in the Kingston area. Consequently, more people knew me from, and for beating pan, than for my scholastic achievements. (smile) And isn’t it funny how I had to leave T&T to go to Jamaica to beat pan, since I couldn’t do it at home, because of its low-life status. I could hang out in the pan yard, but not actually beat a pan, because it was reputedly below the level of my family’s social status. Steups! Oh Friends, most of you don’t know the terrible knocks pan and pan men took, some deservedly, before pan reached its current accepted status. It caused strife in a whole lot of families. Anyway Randy mih son (he was older than me), I know that you had a good heart and I feel assured that you’re resting comfortably with the Father now. So till we meet again, up there where the air is rare, keep beating that sweet tenor pan of yours. And finally turning to our Bit: ‘Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once (for all time) delivered unto the saints.’ Yes Friends, it’s the last day for this Bit, and by now you should know what it’s talking about, so we’ll get right into some appropriate scripture from Bruh Paul, as he enlightens Timothy on the coming apostasy (abandonment of religious faith). ‘This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous (money lovers), boasters, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers (irreconcilable), false accusers (slanderers), incontinent (without self-control), fierce (brutal), despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady (reckless), high-minded (haughty), lovers of pleasures, more (rather) than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate (disapproved) concerning the faith. But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was.’ (2 Tim.3:1-9) Ah Friends, I can’t say it any better, and besides Bruh Paul is the authority on the subject. But I can assure you that Christ’s church is going through some rather rough and dramatic changes right now, and if we, the true believers don’t stand up strong and make our voices heard, then I don’t want to see what will prevail on the other side of this regeneration. And we’ll end with some notes from the scholars on that scripture. ‘The last days began with the birth of Christ and will culminate in Christ’s return to the earth to set up His kingdom. The prediction of perilous times indicates that apostasy will characterize the final days of the church age. A form of godliness is mere religion without power or spiritual life. Paul commands Timothy to turn away from these false teachers who prey upon silly women laden with sins, who are especially susceptible to false teachers. Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth condemns not intense study but some esoteric quest for truth apart from God’s Word. Jannes and Jambres, according to Jewish tradition, were two magicians in Pharaoh’s court who attempted to duplicate Moses’ miracles. (cf. Ex.7:11; 9:11). ‘  Oh Friends, I again implore us to take the matter very seriously, because as we can all see, it’s coming true, and we certainly don’t want anything less than the absolute TRUTH to be taught in Christ’s church in His Holy Name. That would indeed be utter blasphemy, worthy of death and a life of eternal darkness with Lucifer. So let’s rise to the occasion nuh my people, and diligently raise the profile of Jesus and His church, thereby making Him proud of us. Much LOVE!…to know false teachers…one must be familiar with the scriptures…and ask the Lord for discernment in your faith walk…
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 October 2012 Jude 3

Jude 3.    Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.
 
Oh Friends, it’s Friday! The day we all LOVE to see come around, because it heralds the weekend; two days of no labouring for Massa. But you know what’s already happening in T&T? Christmas Carols and Parang (local folk music with a Spanish influence) are already being played on the T&T radio stations. Wow! I was somewhat surprised to hear them being aired so early, 2 months before Christmas. And I haven’t heard any up here as yet. But as we all know, Christmas is a big time in the Twin Island Republic, especially in this 50th year of Independence. So you can imagine how the Parang sides are already lined up with their quatros (a small, guitar like instrument) to go out to sing and celebrate the wonderful birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! And today, everybody’s singing to quatro accompaniment: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! Work done for the week! Is my time now! Thank God is Friday!’ But Friends, to get the proper perspective for the weekend, we need to tone down the rhetoric and party time some, and ramp up the influence of Jesus. So let’s do that by chanting our Friday Chant nuh, with much spirit and enthusiasm. As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ Yes mih people, the weekend isn’t for partying alone, it’s also a time to renew and refresh our sensibilities in Jesus, especially with fellowship on whatever day you celebrate the Sabbath. That’s one way to adhere to the advice of our Bit: ‘Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.’ When we renew our acquaintance with Christ, through study, prayer, meditation and fellowship, it enables us to better understand what we’re all about in Him, and thus to stand up stronger for the TRUTH of our FAITH. And some of you probably get a little miffed because I keep harping on TRUTH and standing strong in the FAITH, but Friends, there’s a very good reason for that, namely the falsehood, prevarication and all the other anomalies that are so prevalent in Christ’s church today, in all aspects of its being; from clergy to congregation, to doctrine and practices. And unless we know the TRUTH and stand up strong to protect it, then Christ’s church will eventually become even more divisive than it is now, and of even less positive repute. And that’s something I’m sure none of us want to happen, but it will unless WE ALL get actively involved in building and strengthening it. Now let’s get into some serious scripture on the subject, Listen to Peter, as he wisely warns of false prophets and teachers: ‘But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily (secretly) shall bring in damnable (destructive) heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious (destructive) ways, by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of (blasphemed). And through covetousness shall they with feigned (deceptive) words make merchandise of (exploit) you: whose judgement now of a long time lingereth not (has not been idle), and their damnation (destruction) slumbereth not.’ (2 Pet.2:1-3) Yes Friends, it happened back then and it’s happening now too, more widespread, with even greater fervour because of the ease of communication, and numerous lost, anxious humans looking for, seeking some kind of healing balm for their emotional and spiritual wounds. Now we’ll end with some observations from the scholars on those verses. ‘The opposite of true revelation is the message of false prophets and false teachers who deceive God’s flock and bring in damnable heresies. These heresies (unorthodox teachings) include an open denial of Christ Himself. Denying the Lord that bought them indicates that Christ’s atonement potentially extends to all men, including those false teachers who reject Him. Therefore they will experience destruction because they themselves will be deceived by their own teaching and continue to reject the way of truth.’ Oh Friends, please take all this seriously, because it concerns each and every believer, and the TRUTH or falsehood we allow into our lives. Much LOVE!…beware of sweet-tongued teachers and preachers…for those with the gift of gab…can lead even the most faithful astray…  P.S. It’s a good thing that I don’t have a sweet tongue or the gift of gab. (smile) 
 
                        

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 October 2012 Jude 3

Jude 3.    Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.
 
Ah mih Friends, yuh see why I’m not a big fan of this wireless communication revolution. I’ve been trying for about the last forty minutes to send a message to two friends in Jamaica, re how Hurricane Sandy was treating them. I seem to have gotten off the first one okay, but five minutes later the second one refused to go. They told me that the server was busy, then something went wrong, to check the service status of Hotmail. I did that, but they claimed it was working properly. Then I was advised to report the problem to Microsoft, which simply told me thanks for reporting it, but to click on to some user services advice site. Now why do I have to go to other users for advice with a Microsoft problem eh? Steups! I finally logged off of Internet Explorer – I started out with it, and I still prefer its set up to the other browsers – and logged into Firefox. At least there I was able to open the draft e-mail, but after that I still got the same run around, and finally another server busy notification. Now what’s happening at 3.30-4 in the morning that Hotmail’s server is so busy eh? Laugh at me, but I still like my telephone and my typewriter. Yes, they may be slow, but they always work, and I don’t lose valuable time and info. Believe me, if I wasn’t writing this Scrip-Bit, my computer would remain unused and unopened for several days. That reminds me of one time in the early days, before the Bit, Hotmail banned me for a month, because I had over 500 unopened e-mails. Hn, hn! Ah Lord, longing for the good, old days! When the wireless stuff works, it’s fine, but the slightest glitch causes untold headache, plus loss of time, money and info. So now I don’t know when I’ll be able to send out the Bit. It’s a good thing I usually do a rough copy by hand, then transfer it to the computer. I just seem to get my thoughts together better that way. Anyhow, I was planning to talk about Hurricane Sandy that seems to be cutting a dangerous path across my second home, the lovely island of Jamaica. And if you’re wondering why I call it my second home, it’s because I lived there from 1966-1969, attending the University of the West Indies on the Mona campus. Don’t ask me what I studied -partying, hanging out and beating pan. (smile) In fact that’s where I became a man, while suffering the first real hardships of life on my own. But you know what Friends, although those were possibly the roughest times I’ve ever been through, overall, I enjoyed it tremendously, because the people treated me like a million dollars, though they didn’t know me from Adam. I now realize that it was the hand of God moving on my behalf, amidst all the testing that He was putting me through, apparently priming me for this work, some thirty odd years later. Believe me Friends, there were a few times if the Lord hadn’t intervened, I wouldn’t be writing this Bit. But enough about me, let’s offer up some serious, heartfelt prayers for the wonderful, though currently down on its luck, island of Jamaica and its beautiful people, asking the Good Lord not to allow Sandy to do too much damage to the already suffering land. Oh fellow believers, I guess a loud ‘Praise the Lord’ is in order, because I just tried sending that message again (4.30) and it seems to have gone through. So, hopefully the Bit will go through too, when I’m finished writing it. And our Bit is the same as the last couple days: ‘Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye earnestly contend for the faith which was once (for all time) delivered unto the saints.’ Now yesterday we looked at why Jude felt it necessary to write the epistle, because of the false teachers who were slyly infiltrating the church of Jesus. We also saw that it’s now an even bigger problem in these current times with the availability of untold information and the ease of mass communication. That’s why brethren it’s becoming ever more important to closely watch, monitor and verify what we read, and whom we listen to. This also makes it extremely important for each of us to consistently read and become very familiar with the Good Book, so that we can at least ask questions as we seek the TRUTH. For if we personally don’t know what the Word says, then we can’t counter what anyone else tells us, which is absolutely necessary in these times of much false teaching and teachers. And before we go any further, please note, as one scholar, Bill Crowder, points out, in contending for the faith, we should not be contentious. (smile) That means we have to do it without too much fussing and fighting, quarrelling and belligerence. But instead, as Bruh Paul warns Timothy: ‘And the servant of the Lord must not strive (quarrel); but be gentle unto all men, apt (able) to teach, patient, In meekness, instructing (correcting) those that oppose themselves (are in opposition); if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of (so that they may know) the truth.’ (2 Tim.2:24-25) Ah Friends, that’s sometimes difficult to do, but if we are to be true followers of Jesus, we have to try and adopt His methods. And Jesus was never quarrelsome or argumentative. So I guess that’s one more facet of His Holy nature that we have to incorporate into our faith walk. Unfortunately space and time have run out on us, so, until tomorrow then, hasta manana, when we’ll resume this topic, provided that fits into God’s plans. And if it doesn’t, then we’ll be in an even better situation, in heaven, resting comfortably in the bosom of Jesus. (smile) Much LOVE!…believers MUST read, meditate on and understand the Good Book…so that they won’t be easily led astray…
 

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