Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 December 2013 Deuteronomy 5:32

Deuteronomy 5:32.    Ye shall (carefully) observe to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.

Oh Friends, sorry this is somewhat late. I wanted to wish you a Happy New Year’s Eve, but right now my spirit is somewhat angered. I’ve been using a free avast security system on my desktop computer for a while now, just simple net surfing stuff, and I never really had a problem with them. However, they’ve been bugging me to buy their advanced system, so since I’d been using their protection for free and it wasn’t bad, I decided to do the right thing and purchase their system.

 
Lo and behold this morning when I came down to write the Bit, I decided to finally download the new avast system. Hn! What a mistake! It seems to have downloaded the system properly, but then said it need to close so everything could take effect. So I agreed to do it then. But upon rebooting I could not get back into Internet Explorer, which I use. I tried several times, but with no luck.
 
Then I tried logging in with Firefox, and was successful. However I don’t like the other servers. That’s just me. (smile) Then when I tried to contact avast, I got the usual run around, with oodles of screens to fill out questions, to which I’ve had no reply, except acknowledgement of my query.
 
Then when I got on to my laptop, which I’m on now, I got on to Internet Explorer without a problem, so I decided to check the site showing on my desk top, only to find that the avast system was blocking Internet Explorer from opening up. So the long and short of the story is that I’m on the verge of cancelling the avast system. 
 
Ah Lord eh! Yuh see why I don’t like computers and all the nonsense they entail! And they never seem to cause problems until you need them most. Steups! And that’s my rant for the day. (smile) 
 
Now dear Lord, please free up the ole fella’s mind, take away the anger and all the negative emotions, so that I can write a Bit worthy of You. In Jesus’ name, I pray.
 
So what’s new and exciting in your lives this New Year’s Eve morning, my fellow believers? (smile) I surely hope it’s better than mine, for who needs the unnecessary headaches eh? Life is already filled with enough necessary ones. Many of you will no doubt be ringing in the new year at some party or other, but please remember Granny’s advice: ‘Sonny Boy, drunk or sober, please mind yuh business.
 
And we all know that this is a time when Beelzebub is at his deceitful and lying best. So let’s not begin the new year off on the wrong foot, getting trapped by him and his evil cohorts.
 
As for me, I’m going to be doing my usual stay at home thing, spending it with my family. Going out in all the cold weather isn’t appealing anymore, and then you have to be careful with the cops and the drunk drivers on the road. Plus it’s supposed to snow in my area today. Who needs the headache eh, when I can enjoy it just as much at home?
 
Anyway, let’s finally get to our Bit. Ye shall (carefully) observe to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.’
 
Ah mih people, we couldn’t have a better Bit to ring in 2014! Why, you ask? Because it brings, and hopefully keeps our focus on Almighty God, whom we claim to so faithfully believe in. Unfortunately though, too many of our actions dispute that claim. And remember that actions do speak louder than words.
 
Just look at our world, at the church, the body of Christ nuh. We certainly can’t say that we’re living up to our Bit, to God’s Word, to our promise to faithfully serve and worship Him? Evil and ungodliness are so rampant all over, even in the church, that it would be difficult, like when Abraham interceded with God to save Sodom, (Gen.18:22-32) to find enough righteous people to save our world.
 
However Friends, we’re indeed fortunate to have a God who gives second chances, and while we’re alive it means that there’s still hope for us. But for that to happen my people, we have to have a serious return to the dictates of Christianity; faithfully LOVING our wonderful God, ourselves and our neighbours.
 
We desperately need to do as the Lord instructed Joshua when he took over the leadership mantle from Moses. ‘Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to 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) whithersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:7)
 
Oh my fellow believers, it doesn’t get any simpler or plainer than that! And if like some, you believe that’s Old Testament stuff, then listen to Jesus saying the same thing.
 
‘Therefore take no thought (don‘t worry), saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.‘ (Matt.6:31-32)
 
There we have it Friends, the New Testament version, of doing what the Lord commands, then all your needs will be met! And isn’t our God a great God? I couldn’t have chosen a better ending for this last Bit of this topsy-turvy, often disastrous and calamitous year of 2013.
 
Please my people, please let’s make 2014 a much better year in seeking God and His righteousness that we did 2013 nuh. Remember it’s all for our benefit, especially our children. There’s nothing the Lord wants from us except our sincereLOVE and reverence, but we need oh so much from Him; His mercy, His tenderness, His forgiveness, His LOVING-kindness, etc.etc.
 
So let’s be wise this new year and return to Him with a new found sincerity. That’s truly wisdom at its highest. Much LOVE!
 

…there’s only one New Year’s resolution that’s necessary…to develop a closer and more intimate walk with Jesus…for then…as promised… everything else will be taken care of…

  
  











       

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 December 2013 Deuteronomy 5:32

Deuteronomy 5:32:   Ye shall observe to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.
 
And another bright Monday morning dawns my Friends; the last one in this topsy turvy year of 2013! But the good news is that we don’t have to work for the whole five days, because New Year’s falls in the middle of the week… And all working people gave a joyful shout of ‘Praise the Lord!’
 
Well mih breddren, please let’s allow some of that enthusiasm to flow into our spirits this morning nuh, so that we can leave the blues, the tiredness, the anxiety and whatever other negative emotion that has us in grip, far behind. Let’s concentrate on the mid-week joy of New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day and consequently belt out our last, but also our most emphatic and enthusiastic Monday Morning Battle Hymn of 2013. That’s the least we can do to show our appreciation for a shortened work week. (smile) 
 
As one now mih people, let’s bring the roof down: ‘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!’
 
Oh Friends, that was most wonderful! We obviously can’t wait to ring out the old year and ring in 2014. But yuh know what? I have to tell us that if we behave the same sinful, disobedient way like we did in 2013, 2014 won’t be any better. In fact it might just be worse, be more disastrous, because I believe our God is truly getting tired of our disgusting behaviour and is intent on tightening the screws.
 
Again, I’m calling on us people, to walk in God’s ways, as He directed the Israelites so long ago in our Bit. ‘Ye shall observe to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.’
 
Now is that so difficult to do my fellow believers, especially when the very existence of our way of life and our world is involved? I should think not!
 
I read recently in a copy of the Anglican Journal where one reader was castigating another for trying to hold this generation to the same edicts as the Israelites in the Old Testament. Now some of what he said was true, and he put forward the argument that what we should concentrate on in these supposedly modern times are the two commandments that Jesus gave us: LOVE your God, and your neighbour as yourself.
 
Now that’s all well and good, but the simple truth is that we can’t even seem to obey those two simple commands. Judging from the behaviour of our society and our world in general, too many of us obviously DON’T LOVE GOD, OURSELVES, OR OUR NEIGHBOURS!
 
So what kind of world do we expect to have under those conditions eh? Not a very good one. And in any case, to fulfill those two commandments of Jesus, we basically still have to live the life set out in the Old Testament; e.g. the Ten Commandments.
 
Ah my fellow believers, if we truly believe that the Good Book was inspired by God, and what it says is true, then we definitely need to refresh our minds by reading Deuteronomy 28, where Moses spells out the blessings of obedience, as well as the consequences of disobedience to the Israelites.
 
And remember, the Word of our Sovereign God DOES NOT CHANGE! That means those words still apply to us TODAY!
 
Listen up as I quote the first two verses of Deuteronomy 28: ‘And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all the nations of the earth: And these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God.’ (Deut.28:1-2) Then the blessings are spelled out from verses 3 to 14. 
 
Now hear the Good Book re the consequences of disobedience. ‘But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto (obey) the voice of the Lord thy God to observe to do (observe carefully) all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day, that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee.’ (Deut.28:15) And the curses are then spelled out from verse 16-68. That should tell us something people; that the curses are much worse than the blessings. 
 
The scholars note: ‘This is probably due to human nature. The threat of severe judgement on the covenant-breaker seems to act as a stronger stimulus to correct behaviour than any promise of blessing.’
 
I beg to disagree though, for if it did, we would not be as sinful, evil and ungodly a society and world, as we are today. It’s obvious that we don’t care about the blessings or the curses, we’re just interested in the foolish material things and opinions that the evil world holds dear, considers so important that we must even disobey Jehovah God to have and do them.
 
Anyway Friends, enough for today. But Friends, please, please read Deuteronomy 28, for yourselves, and hopefully it will bring a lot of us to our senses, and we’ll finally realize the error of our ways, and try to do better, so that the curses of Almighty God won’t rain down on us anymore than they are currently doing. Then will we be considered a wise and astute generation. Much LOVE!
 
…in any language…or court of opinion…the blessings of obedience…are much, much more valuable…than the curses of disobedience…
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 December 2013 Deuteronomy 5:32

Deuteronomy 5:32.    Ye shall observe (be careful) to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.
 
And the ice melteth… but then the melted ice freezeth… Yes Friends, that’s the kind of action we had going yesterday; mild temps melting the ice, but with that run off freezing up again during the colder night. What a bam bam! And with the inconsistent weather we’ve been experiencing, there’s no telling how it will all end.
 
Sadly too, there are still many people without power here in Toronto, down in the Maritimes and also over in Europe, where the weather has played havoc with them too this past week, although their problem was mainly rain and flooding.
 
Oh my people, this Christmas of 2013 definitely won’t go down as a wonderful one in many parts of the world. In fact, 2013 won’t go down in the annals of history as such a wonderful year period! What with all the disasters, both natural and man made, we experienced, plus what appears to be endless strife in so many parts of the world. And last, but definitely not least, the significant global economic contraction. Hn!
 
The sad part about the whole situation though is that the wealthy are getting wealthier and still living extravagantly, while the rest of the society is struggling to make ends meet, with their lifestyles plummeting down the socio-economic ladder. But what to do eh Friends? Yes, what to do indeed?
 
Ah mih people, there is ONLY ONE solution to our problems! Turn to Almighty God in serious, sincere and heartfelt conviction and repentance, then live lives that will honour Him! And until we do that, our earthly situation will continue to be disastrous and calamitous.
 
Oh Friends, this no hearsay, but what the Lord commanded Israel, His chosen people, from early on. Note when Moses called the people together and reminded them of the covenant the Lord had made with them at Mt. Horeb, which included the Ten Commandments, which he again reminded them of, and also how they were afraid and promised to do as the Lord said. (Deut.5:1-28)
 
Then the Lord sent them to their tents and told Moses the words of our Bit, which he was commanded to teach them. ‘Ye shall observe (be careful) to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.’ What’s so difficult to understand about that eh mih breddren?
 
And the Lord continued: ‘Ye shall walk in all the ways which the Lord you God hath commanded you, that ye may live, and that it may be well with you, and that ye may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess.’ (Deut.5:33) Again my Friends and fellow believers, very simple and straightforward instructions.
 
And it’s interesting to note that when the Israelites obeyed, they prospered, and when they did not, great calamity befell them. But although they experienced both the good and bad, subject to their obedience or disobedience, they still never learned and continued their naturally sinful rebellion against their God and King.
 
So I guess the question can be asked, why should we be any different, or rather any better? Firstly because we’ve have a much more intimate knowledge of God, through Jesus Christ and the Good Book. Then we’ve evolved to possibly a higher level of natural intelligence, plus the historical lessons from the many nations down through the ages, who’ve tried to live without God and failed.
 
Unfortunately though, all of that just seems to have made us more stubborn and resistant to God’s Word, and more intent on doing our own, sinful, rebellious thing. But Friends, we keep saying that our God doesn’t change, neither does His Word, so why should our society fare any differently to all those others who were crushed for their disobedience eh? No reason whatsoever!
 
And it’s not like the Lord didn’t repeat His message numerous times to His people. But since time and space are against us, we’ll just look at one instance. Even in the choice of a King, the Lord was very adamant about how he should be chosen and behave. 
 
‘When thou art come unto the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee, and shalt possess it, and shalt dwell therein, and shalt say, I will set a king over me, like as all the nations that are about me; Thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom the Lord thy God shall choose: one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee: thou mayest not set a stranger over thee, which is not thy brother.
 
But he shall not multiply horses to himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt, to the end that he should multiply horses: forasmuch as the Lord hath said unto you, Ye shall henceforth return no more that way. Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away: neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold.
 
And it shall be, when he sitteth upon the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write him a copy of this law in a book out of that which is before the priests the Levites: And it shall be with him, and he shall read therein all the days of his life: that he may learn to fear (stand in awe of) the Lord his God, to keep all the words of this law and these statutes, to do them:
 
That his heart be not lifted up (proud) above his brethren, and that he turn not aside from the commandment to the right hand, or to the left: to the end that he may prolong his day in his kingdom, he, and his children, in the midst of Israel.’ (Deut.17:14-20)
 
Oh my people, nothing there has changed. We still need to have godly leaders, not corrupt, ungodly ones who are only intent on making themselves rich and powerful, but rather wise and honourable, leading the people in obedience to the Lord’s commands.
 
Obviously those conditions aren’t being maintained today, so why should we be so surprised at our demise eh? Our countries were built on the Christian ethic, so if we lose that Christian ethic, there’s only one possible result; our eventual downfall.
 
It’s high time for us to wake up my brethren, and return to sincerely worshipping the ONE and ONLY TRUE GOD: He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob!
 
Remember what we’ve been saying for the past few days? That the Lord’s our Judge, our Lawgiver, our King, and that He will save us. Now if that’s true, and we really believe it, then let’s put all it entails into serious action nuh, for then we’ll truly be considered wise. Much LOVE!
 
…the Lord exalts the obedient…but the disobedient are trampled by His wrath…
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 December 2013 Isaiah 33:22

 Isaiah 33:22.   For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he shall save us.
 
Ah Friends, it’s Saturday and the ole fella is tired. I don’t know why, because I didn’t do much over the Christmas and Boxing Day celebrations. I didn’t over eat or over drink. In fact I rested quite a lot; perhaps too much. (smile). Where was I to go though, with all the ice and snow and unfavourable weather?
 
I guess the tricky Lucifer must be playing some mind games with me. But I have the perfect antidote for that, my spiritual armour. Yes my people, I’m going to put it on right now, and I know that as soon as I do, then begin writing about God’s Word, His joyous Spirit will pick me up and restore a bright and sparkling outlook to my weary spirit. Yes Friends, one of the great things our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ does for us is to uplift and restore our tired and sagging spirits. 
 
And contrary to my hope yesterday, I didn’t finish sharing all the scripture on the ‘lawgiver’ aspect of our Bit, so today we’ll forgo a lot of preamble and get right to it. ‘For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he shall save us.’
 
And I’m chuckling here Friends, because I’m listening to the radio while writing, which I don’t usually do because it tends to distract me.  But for some reason I tuned into Radio Trinidad, 730 AM, where they’re playing some nice Christian music and the writing just seemed to flow. So who am I to deny God’s inspiration eh? (smile)
 
Anyway, turning to the ‘lawgiver’ aspect of our Bit, let’s continue with some appropriate scriptures. Isaiah, that faithful and much inspired prophet, boldly proclaims, re the day of the Lord: ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.
 
And many people shall go and say, come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruninghooks (pruning knives): nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.’ (Is.2:2-4)
 
Oh, what a beautiful day that will be, my brethren! But long before that the Lord was handing down laws to His chosen creation. The first basic law was given to our forefather Adam. ‘And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest eat freely: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.’ (Gen.2:16-17)
 
But as we all know, Adam didn’t obey, and thus we’ve all been possessed of a sinful, rebellious nature since then. Then the Lord made circumcision the law for those of Abraham’s lineage, who wanted to covenant with him. ‘This is my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child (male) among you shall be circumcised.
 
And ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token (sign) of the covenant betwixt me and thou. And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of thy seed.’ (Gen.17:10-12) 
 
And we can’t talk about laws without talking about the Big Ten, the Lord gave to the Israelites on leaving Egypt bound for the Promised Land, (Ex.20: 1-17) with the biggest being the first: ‘Thou shalt have no other gods before me.’ (Ex.20:3)
 
Unfortunately though, neither the Israelites, nor many of us who came after them, have sufficiently heeded those Ten Commandments. And that foolish action, that disobedience sadly bears a direct link to why our world is in such a calamitous state today. And if you don’t believe me, then read those Ten Commandments and take out all the negativity that disobeying each one brings to our world, and see how beautiful the remnant is!
 
Now let’s turn to Isaiah again with some more interesting words from our Maker. ‘Hearken unto me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law; fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings. For the moth shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm shall eat them like wool: but my righteousness shall be for ever, and my salvation from generation to generation.’ (Is.51:7-8)
 
Then Jesus came and broke it all down to just two laws. ‘Thou shalt LOVE the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.’ (Matt.22:37-40)
 
But you think we could even keep those two? Obviously not! Therefore we’re surrounded by a negativity filled world!
 
And we’ll end with some provocative words from James on that last commandment; consideration for a brother. ‘Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge. There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?’ (James 4:11-12)
 
And that Friends, say it all! Until we stop judging and truly start LOVING, our lives and our world will continue to be one, big, disastrous mess. Let this be a wake up call for us nuh. Much LOVE!
 
…there is only ONE Lawgiver…ONE Judge…ONE King…ONE able to save us…Almighty God…the Holy Trinity…
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 December 2013 Isaiah 33:22

Isaiah 33:22.   For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he shall save us.

And wonder of wonders – it’s Friday! ‘Yeah! TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!’ come the joyous shouts. It’s the shortest workweek we’ve had for a while, since most of us had both Christmas and Boxing Days off. And some of us were even lucky enough to finagle Friday off too. (smile)
 
In any case, I think we deserve some time off because we’ve worked so hard during the earlier part of the year. However, as always, we need to utilize our time properly, get our priorities straight, so that we don’t fall prey to the artful and deceitful traps of the arch deceiver, Lucifer, who’s always looking for a way into our lives.
 
So to help us get the right perspective, let’s chant our Friday Chant. With one sincere and heartfelt voice 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 my people, especially in these heady days of celebrating Christ’s birth, we need to be continually on the lookout, to be on our p’s and q’s for anything that will give the enemy even a tiny foothold in our lives, for that’s all he needs to start worming his evil way into the marrow of our souls, and disfiguring the beautiful picture of Jesus we have painted there. So let’s enjoy ourselves, but remember that drunk or sober, we must mind our business.
 
And with that age-old warning, (smile) let’s turn to our Bit, hopefully the last day for it. (smile) ‘For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he shall save us.’
 
Oh mih breddren, I can’t get over how good and wonderful our God is to us nuh! Check this out. Earlier on in the week, I was wondering what Bit I would use for Christmas Day, since it’s the same basic stuff everybody uses and everybody knows. I wanted something different.
 
And lo and behold, a couple days before Christmas Day, the Lord led me to this scripture, with it lasting for several days, and most importantly having the king and saving aspect of it for His special day.
 
Wow! How can I not LOVE and worship Him eh? For He always meets my needs, lifts me out of any dark hole in which I’ve fallen, either literally or figuratively! Ah Friends, it’s so great to trust in the ONE TRUE GOD, He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! But let’s get back to our Bit, before I get more sentimental and get carried away. (smile)
 
And finally, today we’re going to look at the ‘lawgiver’ aspect of our great and wonderful God. And the first scripture comes from Isaiah, re the call to repentance to the sinful, rebellious, backsliding nation of Judah. ‘Hear the word of the Lord, ye rulers of Sodom; give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah.’ (Is.1:10)
 
Yes Friends, the people of Judah were behaving like those of Sodom and Gomorrah. The notes of the scholars’ will further explain the situation.
 
‘1:10-15. The prophet addressed the people of Judah as if they were the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah. His criticism of their hypocritical religion should not be taken as a rejection of the divinely ordained sacrificial system. Rather, it is a condemnation of their superficial worship. (See the note on 1 Sam.15:22-23) They were merely going through the ritual of religion, with no real heart for God.’
 
And 1 Sam.15:22:23, is where Samuel is lecturing Saul for his disobedience, and talking about ‘to obey is better than sacrifice.’ The scholars’ note says: ’15:22-23. These verses reinforce the Old Testament viewpoint that religious ritual devoid of spiritual reality and of a life of total allegiance to a sovereign Lord is worthless. (cf. Ps.40:6-8; Is.1:10-20; Mic.6:8).’
 
Unfortunately though Friends, we’re seeing the very same thing happening today, possibly to an even more disturbing degree. Evil has really gotten out of hand; it controls the world, with nobody, or no bodies strong and willing enough to rein it in.
 
But my fellow believers, that’s a big part of our job! As the church, the body of Christ here on earth, we are supposed to exemplify righteousness. But sadly, too many of us are either too afraid and/or cowardly to stand up against the evildoers, or we’re simply joining with them because we too delight in doing evil.
 
However my brethren, let’s remember that there’s always a price to be paid for evil doing; a substantial one too. Listen as our ever-faithful God, through His faithful prophet Isaiah, calls the faithful to courage.
 
‘Hearken unto me, my people; and give ear unto me, O my nation: for a law shall proceed (go forth) from me, and I will make my judgement (justice) to rest for a light of the people. My righteousness is near; my salvation is gone forth, and mine arms shall judge the people; the isles (coastlands) shall wait upon me, and on mine arm shall they trust.
 
Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax (grow) old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall die in like manner: but my salvation shall be for ever, and my righteousness shall not be abolished (broken).’ (Is.51:4-6)
 
Oh Friends, on those indisputably true and very serious words of our Creator, we’ll end today!
 
Please, please, let’s ponder them, let’s consider how they fit into our individual lives, and then, with the Father’s help, let’s make whatever adjustments are necessary for us to fall in line with them. For that is wisdom of the greatest magnitude! Much LOVE!
 
…to whom shall we look for righteousness… but to Him who created us…and gave us the law…
 
             
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 December 2013 Isaiah 33:22

Isaiah 33:22.   For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he shall save us.
 
And then it was Boxing Day! Yes Friends, most of the Christmas hoopla has died down now. Thank the Lord! The Christmas season itself is wonderful, but all the unnecessary fuss can get to be a bit much.
 
Unfortunately though, some 60-70 thousand people, primarily in the Scarborough area of the G.T.A, are still without power, and many trees and other impediments are still to be removed from the roads to provide access.
 
It’s certainly been a very rough time for those people, and though some are still complaining about the refusal to declare a state of Emergency, the Premier of the Province, Ms. Wynne, says that isn’t necessary because all the people who would have been called in province wide, are already here helping out.
 
But that’s cold comfort for those who still don’t have power. I spoke to a friend last night, she and her husband, both in their 70’s were without power for almost 72 hours over the weekend. At one point she thought she was about to lose her mind. Imagine two people in their 70’s in a cold, dark house for almost three days nuh!
 
Ah mih people, it’s truly been a harrowing Christmas for many people in the province. And sadly, on top of the ice, there’s been some snowfall over the last couple days, not a great deal, but enough to make matters worse. Please continue praying for us and helping in whatever way you can.
 
And another group that has certainly suffered is the business owners and merchants, since many of them couldn’t open because of lack of power and possibly physical damage to their properties. And even for those who were able to open, the number of shoppers must have been seriously curtailed due to the latter’s disastrous situations.
 
To spoil their Christmas even further, today, Boxing Day, usually Canada’s biggest sales and shopping day, has seen its importance steadily eroded as we try to compete with the U.S. Thanksgiving Black Friday sales pitch. So the merchants are seriously suffering, any which way you take it.
 
However my brethren, here’s something to lift us up after all that negative and depressing news. It’s a Christmas Prayer, from the Robert H. Schuller Hour of Power Devotional. I only read it after I wrote the Bit yesterday, otherwise I would have included it. But it’s still the Christmas season, so it’s still very appropriate.
 
And again I have to wonder how this prayer seems so new and unfamiliar to me, although I’ve been reading this devotional for a number of years.
 
Anyway, it inspirationally says: ‘You lead me, Jesus Christ, to thoughts of God. I see you in a manger carved from a tree. I see you as a young man with hands that reach to touch hearts that hurt. Your caring reaches out like the strong and kind branches of a gentle tree reach out to invite road-weary and travel-worn wayfarers to quiet rest.
 
I see you again hanging on a tree with outstretched arms taking in the whole world. From your cross, you show me that God will stop at nothing to save my soul. So, I celebrate God’s LOVE today as I celebrate your birth around a twinkling Christmas tree.
 
I pray my life, like yours, O Lord, may be tall and upright as a pine tree pointing, reaching, sharing, sparkling, life-giving; solid, sturdy, strong-rooted in God’s LOVE, a beautiful soul, evergreen forever: Amen.’ 
 
What inspiring and encouraging words my people! Though I had to chuckle at the end, because a lot of pines and other trees around the Province, certainly aren’t standing tall and sturdy today.
 
But the significant difference is that we believers, despite any setbacks, still have the God-given ability to stand sturdy, strong and deeply rooted in God’s amazing LOVE, becoming truly beautiful souls.
 
And we find that possible because of scriptures like our Bit. ‘For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he shall save us.’
 
Yes my brethren, since Almighty God, the Creator and most omnipotent force in the universe is our guide and leader, we can stand strong in the power of His Holy Name, through the current working of His Holy Spirit, and the sacrificial work His Son, Jesus, our Lord and Saviour, did for us two thousand years ago!
 
That just goes to show how strong and powerful is our God! Two thousand years later, He’s still alive and kicking, and pushing on as strong as ever. Wow!
 
In fact He’s becoming stronger every day, as more and more people come to recognize His tremendous power, LOVE, mercy, grace and forgiveness, and thus believe in Him, put their trust and faith in Him, for help in their earthly pilgrimage.
 
Ah Friends, it’s time to close. I had envisioned getting to the ‘lawgiver’ aspect of our Bit, but that obviously wasn’t meant to be today. However, I’ll leave us with a wonderful scripture on the ‘king and saving’ aspect that I could not include yesterday.
 
Listen to these beautiful and encouraging words from the prophet Zechariah, as he prophesies about Zion’s future king. ‘Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just (righteous), and having salvation; lowly (humble), and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.’ (Zech. 9:9)
 
And we all know that scripture was faithfully fulfilled on Palm Sunday!
 
So fellow believers, we’ve celebrated, sorry, we’re still celebrating the birth of our Saviour Jesus Christ, but we indeed have the next big occasion to look forward to, Easter, when He truly did His saving work and definitely earned His exalted position as our Lord and King. Much LOVE!
 
…to whom do we owe the treasures of salvation and eternal life…JESUS CHRIST…what a wonderful SAVIOUR…!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 December 2013 Isaiah 33:22

Isaiah 33:22.   For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king, he will save us.

                                                        MERRY  CHRISTMAS! 
 

And the congregation raised their voices in heavenly song: ‘Hark! the herald angels sing, Glory to the newborn King. Peace on earth and mercy mild, God and sinners reconcile. Joyful all ye nations rise, Join the triumph of the skies; With the angelic host proclaim, Christ is born in Bethlehem. Hark! the herald angels sing, Glory to the newborn king.’

 

Yes my beautiful fellow believers, on this awesome day, some two thousand years ago, our King, Jesus Christ was born! And all God’s people gave a mighty and grateful shout of ‘Glory Hallelujah!’

 

What a momentous and memorable moment that was in the annals of history! So momentous, that since then it’s been creating an unbelievable uproar amongst mankind; some bad, but most of it good.

 

No wonder the prophet Isaiah lustily declared centuries before, in our Bit: ‘For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king, he will save us.’

 

And today we’ll bypass the ‘lawgiver’ aspect of our God, and instead scan the Good Book for appropriate scriptures that proclaim Him as ‘our king, he will save us.’

 

And what better place to begin than with the everlasting promise of God’s mercy and salvation. Hear Isaiah tell it as it is: ‘For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.

 

Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgement and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.’ (Is.9:6-7)

 

And the zeal of the Lord did perform it my brethren! As all the other promises of our omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, magnanimous, merciful, and forgiving God, this came to pass on that fateful Christmas night two millennia ago, when the holy, sinless, incarnate Son of God, Jesus Christ, was born to a poor carpenter’s family in Bethlehem of Judea. 

 

But yuh know what Friends, even before that magnificent pronouncement, previous to an Assyrian invasion of Israel, Isaiah had specified the way that our King, our Messiah, would be born. ‘Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel (God with us).’ (Is.7:14.)

 

And did this all come about? OF COURSE! The gospel of Luke tells us that ‘the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused (betrothed, engaged) to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her and said, Hail (Rejoice), thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.

 

And when she saw him she was troubled at his saying, and cast (considered) in her mind what manner of salutation (greeting) this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus (Yahweh Is Salvation).

 

He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest (Most High): and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man (I am a virgin)?

 

And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest (Most High) shall over-shadow thee: therefore also that holy thing (one) which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.’ (Luke 1:26-35)

 

And so it was said…and so was it done! We all know the story of how Joseph was told about the immaculate conception in a dream and went on to marry Mary, and how they went up to Bethlehem to register for a census and how Jesus was born that night in a stable, because there was no room in the inn for them.

 

And what a glorious night that was my brethren in ole Bethlehem, for all the heavenly host of angels were singing and rejoicing over the birth of our Saviour, and joyfully declared to the shepherds who were out watching their flocks: ‘Fear not: for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

 

And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger (feed trough). And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.’ (Luke 2:10-14) 

 

Ah mih people how mighty and faithful is our God! For all that was prophesied centuries before came together on that first Christmas night to begin the process of our salvation, of our reconciliation to the heavenly Father, through the birth, life, and sacrificial death of His Son Jesus Christ, who rose from the dead on the third day, having defeated the hosts of Hades, to claim His rightful throne, His rightful kingdom, both here on earth and in heaven above. A kingdom that shall NEVER END! 

 

So let’s go home singing His praises nuh. ‘Hail, the heaven-born Prince of Peace! Hail the Son of righteousness! Light and life to all He brings, Risen with healing in his wings. Mild he lays his glory by, Born that man no more may die, Born to raise the sons of earth, Born to give them second birth. Hark! the herald angels sing, Glory to the newborn King.’

 

Great and faithful is our God my people, so please, in grateful appreciation, let’s spend some time today pondering on the mighty promises He made, and oh so faithfully fulfilled. That’s the true reason for this exciting Christmas season. Much LOVE!

 

…blessed is the season…which engages the whole world…in a conspiracy of LOVE!… (Hamilton Wright Mabie – 1846-1916 – American essayist editor, critic, lecturer)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

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