Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 April 2014 Leviticus 19:1-2

Leviticus 19:1-2.   And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy.

Oh Friends and fellow believers, how does it grab you eh – rainy days and Wednesdays? (smile) I certainly hope it doesn’t have us feeling like the old Gordon Lightfoot song, which says: ‘Rainy days and Mondays always get me down.’

 

Why you ask? Well because as Christ’s representatives, His ambassadors here on earth, we’re called on to have a pleasant, positive disposition most of the time. Anything less will simply not venerate Jesus and make others want to come to Him for the wonderful comfort and succour He has to offer.

 

And that’s basically our major purpose – LOVING our God, sincerely LIVING our Faith, and SPREADING His Word!

 

Now yesterday was a mostly rainy day in my neck of the woods, and so it seems today will also be. But my people, the good news is that though we might not be able to see the sun, we can be positively assured that it’s up there, shining brightly, somewhere above those dark, dreary clouds, because like the Son, Jesus, its Creator, the Sun ALWAYS RISES!

 

That means, once we have Jesus in our hearts, it is ALWAYS possible for our emotions and spirits to rise above whatever is coming against us and trying to keep us down, down in the negative depths of sin and despair.

 

So please my brethren, regardless of it’s raining cats and dogs in your area, like it is in mine, or the evil villain Lucifer is trying to drag you down to his below ground level, please don’t fear; don’t be afraid or anxious for anything, just look to Jesus, tell Him your problems, and sincerely ask for His help, and He will faithfully render it, because that’s what he promised to do.

 

And if it’s one thing ALL believers know, or ought to know, is that our great Triune God is ever faithful, ALWAYS keeps His promises!

 

So, please, let’s be like the birds, which never stop singing God’s praises, be it rain or shine, regardless of their personal situations, be their problems small or large. And the perfect example of that is I heard them outside my window earlier on, lifting their sweet voices to heaven in high praise, though their feathers and bodies were soaked with rain.

 

And all God’s children gave a grateful shout of ‘Glory Hallelujah!’

 

So now that we’ve finished rambling through the preamble, (smile) let’s turn to our Bit: ‘And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy.’

 

And the first question is did you do your homework? Did you check out the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20, to see if what the Jewish scholars say is true; that Chapter 19 of Leviticus embraces, or recapitulates all of the Ten Commandments amongst its diverse verses?

 

Ah mih people, you don’t have to answer that question because I know the answer for a majority of you is a big, fat NO! Just for the records though, I did, and found it be very true.

 

Anyway, in this last message on the holiness of God, and therefore our own holiness, let’s look at a couple of scriptures that declare its necessity. First off is the Lord’s admonition to the children of Israel earlier on in Leviticus, re clean and unclean animals.

 

‘Ye shall not make yourselves (your souls) abominable (impure) with any creeping thing that creepeth, neither shall ye make yourselves unclean with them, that ye should be defiled thereby.

 

For I am the Lord your God: ye shall therefore sanctify yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy: neither shall ye defile yourselves with any manner of creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. For I am the Lord that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.’ (Lev.11:43-45)

 

Ah mih breddren, as usual our God is plain and straightforward! There’s nothing there hard to understand, and He tells us the same thing several times during those three verses, so at some point it ought to sink into our stubborn, hard-headed consciousness.

 

Now listen to Peter on the call to Christian dedication. ‘Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind  (prepare your mind for action), be sober, and hope to the end for the grace (rest your hope fully upon the grace) that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

 

As obedient children, not fashioning (conforming) yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance. But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation (conduct); Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.’ (1 Pet.1:13-16)

 

Yes Friends, all of that still applies to us today, though sadly we are not living it out in the world, otherwise the world would not be so evil and ungodly!

 

Now here is some info from the scholars on verse 13, which I hope will empower and embolden us to start or keep on being holy, holy as we ought to.

 

‘1:13. The exhortation to set one’s hope involves an inward resolution. Gird up the loins of your mind: The imagery is that of personal discipline and outward conduct. Be sober (Gr. nephontes): Be free of every sort of mental and spiritual intoxication. The revelation of Jesus Christ is the Second Advent when Jesus returns to earth to set up His kingdom.’

 

Ah mih people, I know that to live a holy life for Christ takes a lot of discipline and self-control, in other words, great discipleship. However those are things that are not very easy to come by in this undisciplined and anything goes modern world.

 

But if we truly want to live our lives for Jesus, and in the way that He desires, then we have to put our best foot forward and make the sacrifice(s) that are necessary to fulfill our calling.

 

And please remember two things here: The Lord will never give us more than we can bear, and if we sincerely cry out to Him for help, He will gladly help us. That means there’s no reason for us to fall down on the job, unless we choose to do so.

 

Now let’s end, as I LOVE to do whenever possible, with a word from Jesus. ‘Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.’ (Luke 6:36)

 

Oh Friends, just one more wonderful aspect of our heavenly Father which we need to adopt! So without further ado, let’s get to it nuh. Much LOVE!

 

…to walk how Jesus walked…takes much back and belly…but He will give them to us…if we ask in faith…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 April 2014 Leviticus 19:1-2

Leviticus 19:1-2.    And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy. 
 
Good morning, good morning, Friends, neighbours, families, believers, unbelievers, and whoever else is out there! I just want to say, or rather ask just one thing – whom do you think enabled you to see this blessed day eh, and what can we attribute it all to? Well I guess that’s two things… (smile)
 
Anyway, we’ll answer the last question first by asking another question, one asked by the group Sister Sledge in their old song ‘Thinking of You:’ – ‘What do you think brought the sun our today? ‘ And the fabulous answer: ‘IT’S LOVE! FOR WITHOUT LOVE THERE’S NO REASON TO LIVE!’ And isn’t that the awesome, gospel truth my brethren? It surely is!
 
Now that answers the last question. ‘It was LOVE that caused our first heartbeat.’ Everything that’s happened in our world was caused by that wonderful emotion – LOVE!
 
Now the next and most important question is who, or what possessed that immense LOVE to cause it all?
 
And the CORRECT answer, regardless of what you might think or believe, is your Creator, your Heavenly Father, El Shaddai, the Lord God Almighty, the Lord of Hosts, the ONE AND ONLY TRUE GOD, who’s alive and kicking – kicking mightily too – He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Creator of the universe and all therein!
 
Your Provider and Controller, your Rock, Strong Tower, Mighty Fortress, and Deliverer through His sinless and wonderful Son Jesus Christ, to whom ALL knees must and WILL bow, and ALL tongues must and WILL confess that He is Lord of Lords and King of Kings!
 
Glory Hallelujah to our omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent Triune God, whose Holy Spirit lives and dwells within us to lead and guide us into all truth and righteousness! Amen!
 
And now that we’ve gotten that one, or rather two facts straight Friends- the Who and Why of our earthly existence, let’s move on to our Bit. No rambunctious rambling this morning, per the Holy Spirit, (smile) because there’s lots of scripture to be covered.
 
‘And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy.’ 
 
Now yesterday we got some info from the scholars, per God’s Holiness, today we’ll get some more, just on a somewhat different level. ’19:2. Chapter 18 dealt with holiness in sexual behaviour: this chapter deals with holiness in social ethics. Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy: This certainly could be termed the motto of Leviticus.

 
“Holy” (qadosh) and its cognate terms, for example, sanctify and holiness, occur 152 times in Leviticus (about 20 percent of the total occurrences in the Old testament). Israel’s fundamental calling was to be a “holy nation” (Ex.19:6). They were to be “separated from sin” and “to cling unto the Lord.” God’s holiness served as the model for all the congregation.’

 
And I’m here to tell us my brethren, that that model still stands today for us all. Unfortunately though it is a model which we have chosen in our stupid and foolish worldly ways to ignore – sadly, as we can see and feel, to our great expense.

 
Anyway, here comes the really interesting part of the scholars’ info. ‘Jewish scholars have seen in the material of this chapter (19) a counterpart of the Ten Commandments, the precepts of which are recapitulated as follows: the first and second in verse 4; the third in verse 12; the fourth and fifth in verse 3; the sixth in verse 16; the seventh in verse 29; the eight and ninth in verses 11-16; and the tenth in verse 18.’

 
And knowing that we are a busy and lazy bunch, (smile) who find it difficult to check out stuff in the Good Book, I’m going to spoon feed us (smile) with these scriptures.

 
Now what does verse 4 say. ‘Turn ye not unto idols, nor make to yourselves molten (molded) gods: I am the Lord your God.’ (Lev.19:4) That pertains to the first and second commandments.

 
Then in verse 12, you’ll find the third: ‘And ye shall not swear by my name falsely, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the Lord.’ (Lev.19:12)

 
In verse 3, lies the fourth and fifth rule: ‘Ye shall fear (revere) every man his mother, and his father, and keep my sabbaths: I am the Lord your God.’ (Lev.19:3)

 
In verse 16, we’ll find the sixth: Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people, neither shalt thou stand against the blood (life) of thy neighbour: I am the Lord your God.’ (Lev.19:16)

 
Meanwhile, you can check out verse 29 for the seventh commandment: ‘Do not prostitute thy daughter, to cause her to be a whore; lest the land fall to whoredom, and the land become full of wickedness.’ (Lev.19:29)

 
The eight and ninth statutes are found in verses 11-16: ‘Ye shall not steal, neither deal falsely, neither lie one to another. (v.12 is already above) Thou shalt not defraud thy neighbour, neither rob him: the wages of him that is hired shall not abide with thee all night until the morning.

 
Thou shalt not curse the deaf, nor put a stumbling block before the blind, but shalt fear thy God: I am the Lord. Ye shall do no unrighteousness in judgement (justice): thou shalt not respect the person of the poor, nor honor the person of the mighty: but in righteousness shalt thou judge thy neighbour.’ (Lev.19:11,13-15) And you already have verse 16 above.

 
And the tenth commandment is recapitulated in verse 18: ‘Thou shalt not avenge (take vengeance), nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.’ (Lev.19:18)

 
And there we have it my Friends and fellow believers – another instance of our wise God, getting the overall message to us in a slightly different form and place to keep it fresh and ever-recurring to us.

 
And do we ever need to hear God’s Word and message my people! So that we counter the evil and ungodly message that the world is putting forth and unfortunately is taking great hold, being so very prevalent amongst our young generations.

 
Oh Friends, the only way we’ll ever counter Lucifer and his evildoers is by returning to those Ten commandments which the Lord enshrined as His Law so many ages ago. And since our God doesn’t change, is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow, it means His Law hasn’t changed either. We are still expected to abide by it.

 
Hope you enjoyed today’s Bit; the slight difference in format, but nonetheless still abounding with meaningful scripture!

 
And your homework for today is to check out the Ten Commandments found in Exodus 20, and see if they truly relate to the stuff we described in Leviticus 19.

 
Now please do your homework, for you will be questioned on it in class tomorrow. (smile) Much LOVE my brethren!

 
…the only wise and decent way to live…is by following God’s Law…the Ten Commandments…  

 
P.S. Please excuse the tardiness of the Bit, but I got up late and then found that what I wanted to write took more time and was longer than I expected. But it’s all good! Much LOVE!

 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 April 2014 Leviticus 19:1-2

Leviticus 19:1-2.   And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy.

Oh Friends, that wonderful day called Monday has rolled around once again!

And all God’s people declared a loud, hearty and grateful: ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ Wow! Are we changing or what! (smile)

But unlike last Monday, when many of us had the day off to celebrate Easter Monday, today we all have to go to work, so that we can earn money to buy bread to keep our physical bodies going.

 

And as I said sometime aback, we don’t have much choice, provided we want to eat and have a roof over our heads, so we might as well put a positive spin on it, rather than the negative, I’m tired, etc. etc. attitude that is so common today.

 

Ah mih people, most of the world’s population would kill to have the blessed life that many of us live in this Western Society. So please, let’s stop complaining about the few things which we don’t have, many of which are not essential, and enjoy and celebrate the many things we do have that give us the best living standard in the entire world.

 

And the best way to do all of that is by giving our wonderful God a whole lot of glory, praise, thanks and honour. So this Monday morning when we’re still celebrating Christ’s amazing and life-changing Resurrection, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with great gusto, remembering what Christ so selflessly and sacrificially accomplished for us two thousand years ago.

 

So mih breddren, let’s sing, loud and in perfect harmony: ‘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!’

 

Yes mih people! That was wonderful! Jesus was pleased. It made Him feel that His sacrifice was worthwhile after all. Now we’ve got to go out and show the world our true colours in Jesus. And there’s no better way to do that than to personify the words of our Bit: ‘And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy.’

 

Matter finish and done with Friends! Your God is holy, so if you want to truly worship Him, then you need to be holy too. No ifs, ands and buts about it!

 

And before we go any further, let’s hear what the scholars have to say about the Holiness of God. ’19:2. The Hebrew word translated “holiness” comes from a root meaning “to separate or cut off.”

 

The primary meaning of holiness implies God’s positive quality of self-affirming purity; the secondary meaning implies separation, particularly separation from sin. The holiness of God means He is absolutely pure and absolutely separate from (and above) all His creatures, and also separate from sin and evil.

 

Illustration: Because God is holy, all sin is offensive to Him. For this reason he had to break fellowship with His own Son when Jesus became our sin bearer (cf. Matt. 27:46) Only through the identification of Christ with our sin as our sacrifice can we be reconciled to God.

 

Application: When the Scriptures mention the holiness of God, they also stress the personal holiness of His people. (First Ref. Gen.1:4; Primary Ref. Lev.19:2; cf. John 14:6).’

 

What more can I add to that eh Friends? Not a whole lot; except to say that if we want to be God’s people, then like Jesus said in our Bit yesterday, we need to be perfect, complete, abounding in godly Love, and as today’s warns, we also need to be holy, like our heavenly Father.

 

Now please don’t go away with the idea that the Father needs us to be perfect, because He knows that we can never be, since He didn’t make us that way. But in spite of our human frailties and weaknesses, He does expect us to try and be excellent advocates and examples of His LOVE and Holiness, personified through Jesus.

 

And if we are sincere about wanting to follow Jesus, then He will help us to do so. Therefore, with all of that in mind, please, let’s get really serious about Jesus nuh!

 

And Friends, there’s no better time than right now to do so, in the midst of this Easter Season, when all the world’s eyes and minds are on Jesus and His great work of reconciliation. It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to reach out to others and cause them to want to come to Him.

 

It’s also our calling and bounden duty as believers. So please let’s do as we ought nuh. Heavenly wisdom requires it. Much LOVE!

 

…to sincerely work for Jesus…we must be willing to sacrifice some…and to bear some trials and tribulations…like He did…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 April 2014 Matthew 5:48

Matthew 5:48.     Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.’
 
Oh Friends, today is one of those days when I don’t have a clue as to how to get the Bit going. (smile) But nonetheless, trusting in our wonderful God’s goodness and mercy, I am putting pen to paper, believing, having hungry hope and expectant faith that He will lead and guide me by His Holy Spirit to write something worthwhile. Something that will eventually lead to His glorification and the furtherance of His everlasting kingdom.

 
And if, perchance, He chooses not to run around today in a preamble, (smile) then we’ll just get straight into our Bit, because there are several scriptures which corroborate it, that need to be shared.
 
Anyway, I just want to say here that I dearly LOVE those two phrases I used above; hungry hope and expectant faith. I don’t remember where I first read them, but they certainly resonated, made a huge impact on me. The imagery seems so perfect – a hope that’s hungry, and a faith that’s expectant. They just seem to be made for each other!
 
And from here on in, that’s exactly how I want us to feel and behave. Let’s try to have a sense of hope that’s so strong and vibrant, reflecting the way we feel when we are dying from hunger and want food in the worst way, to satisfy and satiate our growling stomachs.
 
Likewise, with faith, let’s endeavour to have real great expectations of whatsoever we’re believing in and for, because passive, wishy-washy, lukewarm faith just doesn’t cut it. Moreover, if we truly want to attain to the level of our Bit, we desperately need a hope that’s truly hungry and a faith that’s really expectant, for how else can we become perfect like our heavenly Father eh?
 
‘Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.’
 
And remember, yesterday the scholars explained being perfect doesn’t mean ‘sinless,’ but rather ‘complete,’ having a passionate, godly LOVE, burning within us for both those who LOVE us and those who don’t. In other words, my people, a true reflection of our Creator.
 
And in fact Friends, from the earliest days, our God has been trying to get us to be perfect and complete. Listen to the words He spoke to Abram. ‘And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the Lord appeared unto Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God (El Shaddai), walk before me, and be thou perfect (blameless).’ (Gen.17:1)
 
Then back in the New Testament, we have Bruh Paul, re his service for Christ, writing thus to the Colossians: ‘(Christ) Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.’ (Col.1:28-29)
 
Then in his closing exhortations in Chapter 4, he writes: ‘Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth (greets) you, always labouring fervently for you in prayers, that ye may stand perfect and complete (filled) in all the will of God.’ (Col.4:12)
 
And the scholars explain that verse thus: ‘4:12. That ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God means that “you may appear perfect and fully assured in all His will.” Like 1:23, 29, this refers to the Colossians being ushered into God’s heavenly presence in a morally perfect state. When this someday occurs, their experience of progressive maturity and assurance will have preceded it.’
 
Meanwhile, James, in talking of faith and humility encourages us: ‘But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire (complete), wanting (lacking) nothing.’ (James 1:4)
 
And per the scholars: ‘1:4. The natural response to adversity is to escape it. But God uses trouble to mature His people.’
 
Ah mih people, to be a true child of God, a new creation in Jesus Christ, we definitely do need to improve our God-like characteristics. Otherwise we’ll end up being big hypocrites, just like the scribes and Pharisees in Jesus’ time – looking good on the outside, but terrible on the inside.
 
So please, let’s talk our talk, and then walk that talk big time, so that that negative assessment Jesus made of the Pharisees and them, will never be made against us.
 
If we want to walk in Jesus’ footsteps, we have to work at being like Him and our heavenly Father – perfect and complete in every way. It’s not easy to do in this godless and wicked world, but with the help of our triune God-head, remember that ALL THINGS ARE INDEED POSSIBLE!
 
That’s the wisdom of the ages! Much LOVE!
 
…as believers…in all our words and deeds…the world ought to see reflected in us…a mirror image of Jesus…so that they can come to know Him too…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 April 2014 Matthew 5:48

Matthew 5:48.      Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
 
Oh Friends, today we have another two certain harbingers of spring. The first is the rise in gasoline prices, which are currently running around $ 1.40 per litre in the Greater Toronto Area (G.T.A). They say it’s about 15 cents more per litre than it was last year. Ah Lord eh!
 
And if you live in these parts, you’ll know that just around this time, termed the start of the driving season, gas prices are always on the rise. Hn! The ole crooks who control the commodity just laugh at talk of boycotts and other stuff, because they know that we have to buy it, since our modern lifestyle is centered around motor vehicles. We need vehicles, and thus fuel for them, to do almost everything; from grocery shopping, to work, to church, and even to play.
 
Strangely enough too, the prices always seem to be a few cents less outside of the G.T.A. Why is that I wonder? But what really amuses me – that’s strictly sarcasm – is that every time there’s an uproar over the exorbitant gas prices, and some politician(s) check into it, there’s never any case of gouging to be found.
 
But yet the oil companies are making billions of dollars in profit every year, while the poor people whom they expect to buy the gas are losing their jobs by the thousands, to cut costs and increase shareholder returns. Don’t these greedy, short-sighted, capitalist fools realize that it’s the same people they’re putting out of work that they expect to buy their products? Steups! 
 
But enough of that, because the blatant exploitation just makes me angry, and there’s nothing much I can do about it. Now the second harbinger of spring is road closures. Chuh! Roads are closed every day for any number of reasons, including road repairs, walking, bicycling and running marathons, parades and festivals, street fairs, etc. etc.
 
Some days it makes you long for winter, when none of these things are around to make driving so onerous. One lane to the T.O. airport has already been closed for a couple of weeks, and will remain that way for at least a couple of months. So can you imagine the traffic snarl that now creates on an already badly traffic snarled highway?
 
All I can do is praise the Lord that He has significantly reduced my driving these days, so I don’t spend as much money on gas, or time on the road. But the sad fact is that almost anywhere you go, the traffic jams will affect you.
 
Anyway, we can’t do much about the rise in gas prices or road closures, so let’s grin and bear them, and instead focus on something we can control, both individually and together as Christ’s Church; that’s our Bit. ‘Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.’
 
But Friends, before getting into any other scriptures on the topic, let’s first hear some much needed explanations from the scholars. ‘5:48. This section of the Sermon on the Mount is summarized with the statement Be ye therefore perfect. Since the New Testament is clear that even the believer is capable of sin, the term perfect (Gr. teleios) is not to be taken as sinless perfection. Perfect here means “complete,” that is, possessing a complete LOVE that, like God’s (v.45), embraces those who LOVE you as well as those who do not.’
 
And as my corollary to that, (smile) although it comes before it in the Good Book, listen to Jesus on the subject. ‘Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, LOVE your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully (spitefully) use you, and persecute you;
 
That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye LOVE them which LOVE you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans (tax collectors) the same? And if ye salute (greet) your brethren only, what do ye more than others? Do not even the publicans so?’ (Matt.5:43-47) 
 
And now Friends, let’s get some good explanation on all that from the scholars. ‘5:43-44. The law of LOVE, sometimes called “law of Christ,” summarizes the ethical principles of the Sermon on the Mount. “LOVE thy neighbour” summarizes the entire second table of the law (cf. Lev.19:18-34). But the unscriptural addition “hate thine enemy” was a popular concept in Jesus’ day.
 
The admonition LOVE your enemies is one of the greatest statements Jesus ever made. The LOVE enjoined in this passage is LOVE that originates from God Himself. Man is not commanded to attempt to LOVE his enemy on the basis of mere human affection but rather on the basis of a LOVE that comes from God.
 
The quality of LOVE commanded here is expressed by giving. Bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that persecute you. LOVING an enemy involves doing good toward that enemy in order to win him over to Christ.’
 
And now for some further explanation from the scholars. ‘5:45-47. In summarizing the importance of LOVE, Jesus reminded that LOVE was a necessary proof of salvation: that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven may be better rendered, “that ye may prove to be sons of your Father.”
 
An initial reading of this text out of its context might seem to imply that LOVING one’s neighbours automatically makes one a child of God. However, the New Testament is clear that LOVE is the evidence that one is already saved by the grace of God (cf. 1 John 3:14). Therefore Jesus reminds us that we are to LOVE our enemies as our brethren, for even the publicans LOVE those who LOVE them. Publicans were public officials of Jewish nationality who worked for the Roman government as tax collectors and were generally despised by the people.’
 
And there we have it Friends, today’s sermon, (smile) ably assisted by the scholars. I do hope that the information they provided will be helpful to us all, giving us a better understanding of what Jesus requires of us, for that’s what the Good Book is all about, and what we’re here to try to learn, mark and inwardly digest. Please ponder it all, asking God for help to understand it, because that’s truly wisdom from on high. Much LOVE!
 
…godly LOVE should be the basis for ALL Christian action and interaction…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 April 2104 Lamentations 3:32

Lamentations 3:32.    But though he cause grief, yet will he have compassion according to the multitude of his mercies.

 Oh Friends, oh Friends, glory be! Yes, it’s another new day in paradise! Another marvellous and wondrous gift from our magnanimous Creator!

Oh my people, it just stirs me up so much when I consider the wonderful God we serve and worship!

 

Wow! Which other supposed deity gives His people new mercies and blessings every single morning eh? Who shows such undeserved compassion each and every day eh? NONE but our omnipotent God, my brethren!

 

That’s why we ought to give Him enormous thanks and continually praise His Holy Name. Remember, He doesn’t have to do what He’s done and doing for us, neither do our puny efforts deserve His LOVING-kindness. But it’s His unsurpassed unconditional LOVE that causes Him to bless us so richly, in spite of our sinful nature and behaviour.

 

And please remember too, that while we were yet stooges and slaves of Beelzebub, He sent His ONLY Son Jesus to die for us, so that we could be made justified, righteous, and all the other wonderful things that Jesus’ selfless, sacrificial death, resurrection and ascension accomplished.

 

So there are indeed numerous reasons for us to be thankful and grateful! Therefore, instead of trying to belittle Jesus’ importance, or take God out of our society, as we are allowing the evil powers that be to do, we ought to be jumping and shouting, beseeching and pleading, picketing and protesting, advocating and exhorting, to raise up the name of Jesus, just like the Father did after His triumphant victory over death and the grave!

 

We ought to be encouraging ALL knees to bow, and ALL lips to solemnly and sincerely declare that Jesus is indeed the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

 

Oh Friends, we ought to be filled with such a hungry hope and expectant faith, that we can clearly see, totally envision through our eyes of faith, a saved world; a world where Almighty God and Jesus Christ are once again at the forefront of our society!

 

Oh my people, my fellow believers, that’s the ONLY WAY our society will once again prosper, both spiritually and materially. If we don’t feel that way, don’t envision it happening, then we’ll just continue the downward spiral in which we’re now totally engaged.

 

Oh my brethren, the quicksand in the evil and ungodly mire of the world is slowly sucking away our lifeblood, unfortunately causing us to drift further and further away from the ONE TRUE GOD, He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and if we don’t soon put a stop to it, then our children, and their children too, will be the ones to suffer the real pangs of misery and defeat, since we’ll already be dead and gone.

 

Now is that the legacy we want to bequeath to our children, whom most of us LOVE like the Lord LOVES us? I sincerely doubt it.

 

However Friends, it’s also necessary to remember that though we are currently a very sinful people, and that sometimes the Lord will take us to task for our sins, He will not cast us off forever. (Lam.3:31)

 

And all God’s people loudly declared: ‘All glory, praise, thanks and honour be to our magnificent and magnanimous God!’

 

Yes Friends, those are indeed wonderful sentiments, but we need to not only mouth them, but even more importantly put them into action!

 

And as our Bit so wisely and rightly states: ‘But though he cause grief, yet will he have compassion according to the multitude of his mercies.’

 

Ah mih breddren, it gives our God no joy, no pleasure to punish us, but as a just and righteous Deity, He has to keep things right. Now listen to the words of Jeremiah, as he laments the state of his people Israel, which very much approximates to our current state.

 

‘For he doth not afflict willingly (with delight), nor grieve the children of men. To crush under his feet all the prisoners of the earth. To turn aside the right of (justice due) a man before the face of the most High. To subvert a man in his cause, the Lord approveth not.

 

Who is he that saith, and it cometh to pass, when the Lord commandeth it not? Out of the mouth of the most High proceedeth not evil (woe) and good (well being)? Wherefore doth (how then can) a living man complain, a man for the punishment of his sins?

 

Let us search and try (examine) our ways, and turn again to the Lord. Let us lift up our heart with our hands unto God in the heavens.’ (Lam.3:33-41)

 

Oh Friends and fellow believers, that bit of scripture both highlights our current situation, and also points the way to our salvation!

 

Please, let’s accept the challenge with a strong faith, and ask God to ‘reignite His image in our hearts, and rekindle His fire in our souls,’ so that we can turn this evil and ungodly world around, and once again walk in the steadfastness of His abounding grace and undying LOVE!

 

Now that my people, is truly heavenly wisdom! Much LOVE!

 

’…the walk of faith is ultimately…a journey of HOPE and LOVE…’

 

P.S.  Those words in inverted commas above, have been taken from a devotional booklet on healing, based on the writings and actions of St. Therese, the Saint of the Little Flower.

 

Please, please, my people, let’s use them to truly reignite the flame and fire of God’s LOVE within us nuh, and thus bring some much needed change to our badly drifting and listing world!  Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 April 2014 1 Corinthians 15:57

1 Corinthians 15:57.     But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Oh Friends, it seems like spring has finally decided to stay sprung! Glory Hallelujah!

And I say that because there’s finally some green colour appearing in the previously dead looking brown grass, the temps are staying fairly standard between 7 and 12 degrees Celsius, and when I got up just now I heard some birds singing their early morning praises to their Maker!

 

How wonderful eh! It’s so refreshing and revitalizing to hear the birds singing praises, because they are ever so faithful in it. Sometimes I think the Lord should have made us like the birds, without a mind of our own, for then we would have been much more faithful than we currently are.

 

Unfortunately though, the trees don’t seem to be buying into this optimism that spring is finally getting serious about coming, for there is not one single green bud on any of them. They all still dancing stark naked in the oftimes brisk and cold spring wind.

 

We believer in Jesus Christ however, are filled with oodles of optimism, through, and for the LOVE of God! We are so filled with it that it’s overflowing, and consequently filling others with the wonderful news of this Easter Season, where Christ so triumphantly rose from the dead – Mama Mia! – and in the process defeated the twin evils of death and the grave, and therefore the ruler of Hades, Lucifer.

 

Oh Friends, this Easter Thursday morning, let’s put a big smile on our faces, and release the immense joy that’s in our hearts and souls with a song of praise to our Maker nuh!

 

Like the birds, let’s show Him our great appreciation for designing, putting into action and successfully carrying out His incredible plan of reconciliation, which so LOVINGLY brought us back into right standing with Him.

 

Please pray with me now: ‘Dear heavenly Father, You are so wonderful to Your sinful, undeserving children! We continually make You sad and mad at our misdoings, but You just keep on LOVING us! You keep on granting us Your awesome forgiveness, mercy and grace, blessing us with stuff we definitely don’t deserve.

 

Oh Father, this morning we’re here to tell You that we truly LOVE You! We sincerely worship and adore You! We do magnify Your Holy Name and give You much thanks and praise!

 

Oh gracious Father in heaven, we are especially grateful and thankful for Your most wonderful Son Jesus, who became our Lord and Saviour on that first Easter Sunday two millennia ago, by sacrificing His holy life to pay for our abominable transgressions.

 

Oh Father, we are truly sorry that You had to put such trials and tribulations on Jesus for our sakes, but we know that You are a just and righteous God and cannot just pardon sin; a price, including death and the shedding of blood must be paid for it.

 

And You LOVED us so much, considered us so worthy, that You gave Your Only son, Jesus Christ, the ONLY sinless soul beside Yourself, to pay for our sins!

 

Oh heavenly Father, You know that we can NEVER repay You for that awesome, unconditional LOVE, but we will try our best to live lives down here on earth that will magnify You. Lives that will continue to grow in the holy character of our Saviour Jesus, thus glorifying Your great Name and furthering Your glorious kingdom. We pray this on the blood of Jesus that was shed for us on Calvary’s cross. Amen!’

 

Oh mih people, mih people! What the Holy Spirit can do in your soul eh! I have to chuckle here, because I never intended to even have a prayer, much less such a long one. But as usual, the Holy Spirit guided me there. In any case, it is right, and also our bounden duty to pray and give thanks and praise to our heavenly Father, especially at this Easter season, when He so faithfully caused us to be reconciled to Him!

 

And believe me Friends, that is no small undertaking or unimportant event! In fact it’s the greatest thing that’s ever happened to mankind! If our wonderful, ever-faithful and ever-LOVING Creator didn’t care so much for us, we’d still be wallowing in the misery of our dreadful sins, headed for eternal death and damnation in the foul and vile company of the prince of darkness, Beelzebub.

 

For remember, as the Good Book so pointedly states: ‘For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through (in) Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (Rom.6:23)

 

But then Bruh Paul further clarifies the situation to the Corinthians, and consequently us: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave (Hades), where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ (1 Cor. 15:54b-57)

 

Yes my fellow believers, don’t ever forget those memorable, momentous and most important words of our Bit! Let’s plant them deep, deep, deep in the inner recesses of our hearts, minds, bodies and souls, because that is indeed why we are able to laugh, sing and shout ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ this Thursday morning two thousand years after Jesus gave us that everlasting victory!

 

Wow! What a mighty God we serve and worship my brethren! 

 

So as we prayed above, and Bruh Paul so timely reminds us: ‘Therefore my BELOVED brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain (futile) in the Lord.’ (1 Cor.15:58)

 

Absolutely not my fellow believers! So please, let’s stand steadfast and strong this morning, and all the remaining days of our lives, confident in the glory and victory of Jesus Christ! Much LOVE!

 

…oh how could we not LOVE Jesus…the sinless One…who made our sins His own…and LOVINGLY set us free…to some day dwell with Him in heaven…and always faithful be…

 

 

Previous Older Entries