Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 March 2015 1 John 1:9‏‏‏

1 John 1:9.     If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Ah Friends, the ole fella is somewhat slow and doddering this chilly Tuesday morning in Holy Week. So please cut him some slack, have a heart, show him a li’l LOVE nuh. (smile) But the caffeine is hot and strong and sweet, and our great God is still in control, which means that all is well. Praise the Lord!

And when I say that our God is something else it’s true, for He just provided me with a lead in to what I want to preamble about today; laughter; laughter in times of trouble. I was just outside putting out the garbage and chuckling at my slow doddering steps. Hn, Hn!
 
Ah mih people, it’s not easy, but please remember that our GOD IS GOOD; He will provide for us in each and every circumstance. He’s promised never to leave nor forsake us, and He faithfully keeps all of His promises.
 
Now listen to this quote attributed to Ed Howe, and though I found several Ed Howes in my research, I do believe the one we’re looking for is Edgar Watson Howe (1853-1937), an American novelist, magazine and newspaper editor. Howe is quoted as saying ‘That if you don’t learn to laugh at trouble, you won’t have anything to laugh at when you grow old.’
 
Ah mih breddren, that is so true that it’s not funny. If we don’t learn to laugh at some of our problems, especially when we encounter a chronic illness, we will be continually miserable and have nothing to laugh at in our winter years.
 
Thankfully, I learned that truth at a fairly early age, possibly because of the early onset of some back and knee problems, and over the years have developed that attitude. So when the aches and pains set in, though they can be very trying, I still manage to chuckle at them, while asking the Lord what’s next?
 
I don’t usually get an answer, but I know that He empathizes with my condition, and He is definitely the One who has kept me going all these years, and will keep me going for as long as it takes to fulfill His plan for my life. Glory to God!
 
So my brethren, I’d advise us to develop that attribute of laughter, for it’s often the best remedy for whatever ails us, and it’s certainly free and readily available at all times.
 
Now here’s another remedy that’s also readily available, this time for our biggest problems, our sins. ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’
 
Wow! What a promise my people! And it’s the gospel truth, since our God does not lie, and has put the necessary systems in motion by sacrificing His Son Jesus as atonement for our abominable transgressions.
 
What more can we ask eh? Nothing really my fellow believers! Everything’s set in place, we just have to come to the throne of grace and ask for mercy and forgiveness and it will be granted. But foolishly, too many of us refuse to do that, that’s why we’re still tied up, mired in the quicksand that’s life.
 
Oh Friends, the only way out of that mire is by accepting Jesus Christ as the Lord and Saviour of your life, both physically and spiritually. With that acceptance comes a brand new life, you’re become a new creation in Christ; (2 Cor.5:17; Gal.6:15) with new values, new ways of thinking, accomplished by putting Christ first and foremost in all your doings.
 
Anyway, I want to close off these messages on the confession of our sins with a dramatic rendering of Jesus on the subject. This occurs when He talks about a house divided cannot stand.
 
‘He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad. Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.
 
And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world (age), neither in the world to come.’ (Matt.12:30-32)
 
Oh Friends, strong words indeed from our Saviour!
 
And we’ll let the scholars explain that for us. ‘12:31-38. The blasphemy against the Holy Ghost is deliberate rejection of Christ, His Spirit wrought miracles and His salvation. It is the ultimate sin that by its very nature puts a man beyond the opportunity of salvation.
 
The Holy Spirit brings the offer of salvation to the heart of man. To reject Him is to act “presumptuously” and thus to “blaspheme” God. Those who reject His offer of salvation are in reality blaspheming the very nature of God Himself and the genuineness of His grace.’
 
Heavy stuff Friends!
 
And the scholars continue further with some basic Sins against the Holy Spirit. ’12:31-32. All sin is serious, and to some degree challenges and attacks the character and authority of God. But six sins are specifically identified as sins against the Holy Spirit. Since the Holy Spirit is a person, He may be sinned against. Since He is also God, it is an extremely serious matter to be guilty of sinning against Him.
 
These six sins are blaspheming (vv.31-32; Luke 12:10), lying or tempting (Acts 5:4,9), despising (Heb.10:29), resisting or striving with (Gen.6:3; Acts 7:51), vexing or grieving (Is,63:10; Eph.4:30), and quenching (1 Thess.5:19) the Holy Spirit.
 
Illustration: Because of the severity with which Jesus describes blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, some people unnecessarily fear that they may have committed the unpardonable sin. One of the characteristics of such sin is that the Holy Spirit ceases to convict of sin in one’s life – so the fact that someone may be concerned about a particular sin indicates he is not beyond grace. He should immediately repent of that sin to restore fellowship with God.
 
Application: The keys to not sinning against the Holy Spirit are to: (1) be led by the Spirit, (2) be filled with the Spirit, and (3) be illuminated by the Spirit. (First Reference, Gen.6:3; Primary Reference, John 16:13).’
 
Oh Friends, that is wonderful information, please accept it and follow it up by reading those Bible references, I just did, and they’re very enlightening and encouraging. That’s your homework for today. (smile)
 
Seriously though my people, if you want to truly understand the Lord’s Word you have to spend time in it; reading, pondering, questioning, and inwardly digesting it, so that it can become a natural way of life for you. A lot of us just pay minimal attention to the Word, but expect to be illuminated and enlightened, but that only comes with serious study.
 
So let’s decide to do that due diligence nuh my people, so that the Word can guide us through the Holy Spirit to the land of the truly living and LOVING and serving God. That is the wisdom of heaven for all ages! Much LOVE!
 
…Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people…thou hast covered all their sin…Selah… (Ps.85:2)

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 March 2015 1 John 1:9‏‏

1 John 1:9. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Well my people, unfortunately the weekend is now over. Chuh! Hope you had a good, godly and restful one, and that you joyfully participated in the Palm Sunday celebrations of your church.  Now though, it’s time to get back to the daily grind and common task that that wonderful day called Monday brings. (smile)

Ah well, we don’t have much choice but to go out and labour if we want to make a living, so why make it even more difficult by moaning and complaining when we don’t have much choice in the matter eh? It makes no sense at all. So the sooner we come to terms with it, the better it will be for all of us.
 
And to help us do just that, let’s voice our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with great gusto and tremendous energy….  Hn, hn! Awright, I know that many of you can’t get up to that kind of speed yet, so don’t worry, just give it your best shot.
 
Altogether now: ‘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!’
 
Now that wasn’t too bad at all Friends! It wasn’t spectacular, and didn’t draw any encores from heaven, but it was better than I expected. (smile) So now that the adrenalin is fuelling us, let’s get up to true speed by doing what our Bit advises, so that we can clear our souls, make them right with the Father, and thus be truly empowered to go out and do a wonderful job for our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, namely living a life that will encourage others to want to know Him. 
 
‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’
 
Oh Friends, those are such mighty words of truth that they leave no room for any doubt whatsoever! That is exactly why we have been exploring our souls during this Lenten season, trying to clean them up, and why we’re waiting with bated breath for the duration of this Holy Week, when Jesus sacrificed His sinless life so that if wanted, our souls would be washed clean of sin and we’d have a chance to be reconciled to our heavenly Father.
 
That’s what Good Friday and Easter Sunday are all about my people; the opportunity to be forgiven of our sins and live eternally with our LOVING God!
 
But please note my brethren, we have to want that cleansing badly enough to first believe in Jesus, and then embrace that opportunity with serious action. It doesn’t just fall in our laps. We have to play a wise and sensible part in the partnership. God has done His part; providing salvation, it’s now up to us to accept or reject it.
 
And believe me Friends, there is no greater joy to be had on this earth than forgiveness of sins. Listen to Bruh David tell it from Psalm 32 – The blessedness of forgiveness. ‘Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord imputeth not (does not charge his account with) iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile (deceit).
 
When I kept silence, my bones waxed (grew) old through my roaring (groaning) all the day long. For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture (my vitality) is turned into the drought of summer.   Selah. 
 
I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin.  Selah. For this shall everyone that is godly pray unto thee in a time when thou mayest be found; surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come nigh unto him.’ (Ps.32:1-6)
 
Oh my people, my people, what joyful words! And the scholars explain them better than I can. ‘Psalm 32. The psalm describes the blessedness of forgiveness as no other does. This is the theme of especially the first five verses, which include the happiness of the forgiven man (vv.1-2), the physical and psychological effects of unconfessed sin (vv.3-4), and the simple remedy of confession to obtain God’s forgiveness (v.5).
On this basis David can experience prayer (vv.6-7), divine instruction (vv.8-9) and personal witness (vv.10-11).’
 
Now if that was good for Bruh David, why wouldn’t be good for us eh Friends? In fact it should be even better for us since we now have the overwhelming sacrifice and cleansing of Jesus’ precious blood.  So please my brethren, let’s wisely look to Jesus for succour and salvation nuh. It’s the only way to get to heaven and enjoy eternal life! Much LOVE!
 
…the fool hath said in his heart…there is no God…and that’s exactly why he is a fool…

 

 

 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 March 2015 Matthew 21:10

 Matthew 21:10.    And when he was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this?

PALM  SUNDAY!

Well Friends, today is Palm Sunday, the first day of one of the most important weeks in Christianity – Holy Week.  It’s the day that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ made His triumphal entry into the holy city of Jerusalem, riding on a donkey. And thus it is a very important day for Christians to go to church to worship Christ and fellowship with each other.

It’s a preview of things to come. The first time, He humbly enters Jerusalem on a lowly donkey, but the next time…the next time… Oh my people, Jesus will be coming in might and majesty, as Lord of Lords and King of Kings, sitting astride a snow white charger, that’s snorting and impatiently stamping its feet, anxious to join the fray, the impending battle for world supremacy.

Ah mih breddren, this day also shows how frail and fickle and foolish humans can be, and are so easily led astray by those with the power of the mouth; the gift of the gab. Why do I say that? Because on that first Palm Sunday, the populace of Jerusalem worshipped and glorified Jesus, but a week later they were crying out to crucify Him, all because their leaders incensed them to do so, for the leader’s private purposes.  

Sadly Friends, the same thing is happening in our world today; a large amount of people are being led astray on numerous fronts by their leaders, not for the benefit of the people, but for the selfish and greedy purposes of those in power. Is this misuse and abuse of power ever going to end?

Who knows? But it will only end when we raise up righteous and godly rulers and hold them to account, instead of the parasites who now feed greedily on the fears, foibles and wealth of the people, and rob and steal with impunity.

But that’s a sermon for another day. (smile)  Today we’re featuring Palm Sunday, so let’s focus on that. And please note Friends, that his day was prophesied hundreds of years before Jesus’ time by the prophet Zechariah, when he proclaimed to Israel: ‘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 the scholars offer this information. ‘9:9-10. The ass (donkey) was an animal of peace. The kings of the earth come to bring destruction and devastation; Israel’s King comes to bring peace. The prophecy was fulfilled when Jesus made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem (Matt.21:4-7; Mark 11:7; Luke 19:38; John 12:14-15).’ 

Yes Friends, centuries later, Jesus appeared on the scene, and on this fateful day, set His sights on Jerusalem. So let’s see what happened nuh. The gospel of Matthew tells it thus: ‘And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethpage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, Saying unto them, go into the village over against (opposite) you, and straightway ye shall find an ass (donkey) tied, and a colt with her: loose (untie) them, and bring them unto me.

And if any man say aught (anything) unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them; and straightway he will send them. All this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Zion, behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek (humble), and sitting upon an ass (donkey), and a colt, the foal of an ass.

And the disciples went and did as Jesus commanded them. And brought the ass (donkey), and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set him thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from trees, and strewed (spread) them in the way (road).

And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord, Hosanna in the highest. And when he was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this? And the multitude said, this is Jesus, the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.’ (Matt.21:1-11)  

Ah Friends, what a carnival-like day, an atmosphere of celebration that must have been eh, with everybody rejoicing to see their prophet, their Messiah being kingly paraded through their streets. But as we said earlier, the euphoria didn’t last very long, for some five days later they were crying out for His head, for Him to be crucified.

Now here is some info from the scholars, re those verses. ’21:1-9. This event is traditionally known as the triumphal entry, when Jesus officially offers Himself to the nation of Israel as her long-awaited Messiah. However, in many ways it was far from a triumph, for the day ended in Jesus’ public prediction of His rejection by His own people. (See Mark 1:1-10; Luke 19:29-39; John 12:12-15).

Bethpage was a village near Bethany, about a mile east of Jerusalem and apparently hidden from it by the summit of the Mount of Olives, which was the hill on the east of Jerusalem. The quotation in verse 5 is a combination of Isaiah 62:11 and Zechariah 9:9, taken substantially from the Septuagint, the ancient Greek translation of the Old Testament.

Hosanna is the transliteration of a Hebrew term meaning “please save,” and occurs in 2 Samuel 14:4 and Psalm 118:25. From the following verse of this psalm the acclamation Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord is taken. Riding on the colt of an ass marked the official entry of Israel’s kings. Thus Jesus arrives in the full declaration of His kingship.’

There we have it my brethren; lots of info on the Palm Sunday scene, so please let’s ponder and study it and thus increase our knowledge of Jesus and His Word, and consequently also increase our faith and belief in Him, for He is truly the ONLY WAY through which salvation can be had.

So let’s be wise and embrace Him and all that He stands for RIGHT NOW, for tomorrow might just be too late. Much LOVE!

…the zenith of wisdom is… surrendering one’s self to Jesus Christ…accepting Him as your Lord and Saviour…your ticket to eternal life…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 March 2015 1 John 1:9‏

1 John 1:9.   If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Well Friends, it’s a Saturday morning at the end of March and that encouraging and uplifting season of spring has been touted as being in the air. Technically it’s now spring, being that for over a week now. But the reality of the situation is entirely different. It’s minus plenty outside right now, and the high for later on is only about a big fat ZERO, with the wind chill factor of the strong and cold March winds making it even worse.

Oh for the warm, tranquil, scenic and idyllic climes of Tobago! (smile) But I do believe that the weather is taking a negative toll on the populace. It’s been a pretty bad winter and it just keeps dragging on with no seeming end in sight.

And then the time change hasn’t helped matters either. However my people, our world wasn’t designed and set up haphazardly. Our God put plenty thought into it, and just like night follows day, and vice versa, spring always follows winter, this one is just taking its own sweet time. (smile)

And you can guess that the word for today is ‘PATIENCE!’ It’s a word though that’s fast fading from our vocabulary. But like the Roman dramatist, Plautus (254-184 B.C) is reputed to have said, way back then: ‘Patience is the best remedy for every trouble.’

And he does have a point, especially in this rat-race society of ours, where we’re accustomed to the quick- fix, the now for now stuff; like fast food drive ins, credit cards to spend cash we don’t have, etc. etc. We even expect to be healed quickly of all and any sickness that befalls us. But that unfortunately is not always the case. More often than not we need to execute patience and allow the passing of time to fix our brokenness.

It would do our society a whole lot of good if we would learn to wait. There’d be less stress, and thus less heart attacks in relatively young people, less debt, and less of a whole lot of other negative things. And unfortunately many of us Christians are being pulled into the crazy vortex of the world’s lunatic rush for everything.

Remember, we are supposed to be in the world, but not of it. (Rom.12:2)  James also tells us that friendship with this world means enmity with God. (James (4:4) And John in his first epistle clearly tells us not to LOVE this world nor the things in it, for if we do, then the LOVE of the Father is not in us.’ (1 John 2:15)

So Friends, please let us cut down on the haste and the inability to wait, for it will only cause us bigger problems in the long run. And Bruh Paul reminds us, that as Christians, if we hope for something that we can’t see, then we ought to wait with patience, perseverance and eager expectation for it, it will come, all in God’s good time.  (Rom.8:25)

That brings us to our Bit. ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’

Oh Friends, that’s one of the most important verses in the entire Bible, that’s why we’re spending so much time on it. Sin, as we know, has been man’s Achilles heel ever since Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden. Now sin is very obnoxious to our holy and just God, and that is why He sent Jesus down from heaven to save us from them. And the Good Book has a lot to say about it, from the earliest days right down to the last ones.

So let’s look at a couple of scriptures that deal with sin nuh. We’ll begin with a most appropriate passage, one that nicely describes what we were just talking about.  It comes from John, when he was baptizing in the Jordan. ‘The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.’ (John 1:29)  

And Friends, if anybody should know about that, it was John, for he was sent as the harbinger to proclaim Jesus’ coming and His message of salvation!

Now listen to this passage from Psalm 103; Bruh David’s song of Thanksgiving for God’s mercy. ‘The Lord executeth righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed. He made known his ways unto Moses, his acts unto the children of Israel. The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous (abounding) in mercy (LOVING-kindness).

He will not always chide (strive): neither will he keep his anger for ever. He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy (LOVING-kindness) toward them that fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgression from us. Like a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him. For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.’ (Ps.103:6-14)

Again my people, if anybody ought to know about sins and their forgiveness, it is Bruh David, for he passed through his fair share of sinfulness, but the Lord forgave him whenever he cried out in confession and begged for mercy. And yuh see what he says, ‘as far as the east is from the west,’ the Lord has removed our sins from us.

Oh what a mighty and merciful God we serve my people! No other deity does anything like that. So I don’t see why it’s so difficult for us to come to the Lord and confess our sins, when we re guaranteed forgiveness and LOVING –kindness!

Friends, we’re allowing the wicked world in which we live to brainwash us with its fleshly lusts and bright, shiny but unworthy stuff, and that’s not wise. So please let’s wake up from our foolishness, and attain unto wisdom nuh; let’s confess our sins to Almighty God and be forgiven. Now that is heavenly wisdom! Much LOVE!

…confession is always good for the soul…especially when it brings forgiveness and mercy…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 March 2015 1 John 1:9

1 John 1:9.     If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

And then my beautiful Friends and neighbours, it was Friday! The day that so many of us around the world can’t wait to come around, because it signifies the end of our labour for two, big, whole days. (smile) That’s why the joyful cry of ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday, and the weekend’s here at last!’ rings out all over the land every Friday.

 
However Friends and neighbours, just to see Friday come around should not be the uppermost fact or factor in our lives. It does have its importance, but that’s certainly not at the head of the list.
 
Our main priority should always be our focus on the living God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the One who created the universe and all therein. The One who LOVED us so much that He sent His only Son to die for us on a wooden cross at Calvary’s Hill, so that we could be reconciled to Him.
 
Now that’s a more worthwhile focus, especially in this upcoming last week of the Lenten season, Holy Week, beginning with Palm Sunday, where we recreate Jesus’ triumphal entry into the Holy City of Jerusalem. Then during the week, we feel with Him the anguish of waiting for His betrayal, crucifixion, and burial.
 
And finally, the greatest moment of all in man’s history, when we celebrate His triumphant resurrection on Easter Sunday morning! For that’s what entitles us to promise of eternal life! If Christ had not arisen from the grave, having defeated death, then there’d be no after life for us to celebrate today, two thousand years later.
 
Now that’s where the Christian mind should be focused in these difficult and trying times. And to help us get into that frame of mind, rather than the ‘Thank God it’s Friday’ one, let’s chant our Friday Chant with much conviction.
 
As one powerful chanter 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.’
 
Yeh mih people, we need to concentrate on rejuvenating ourselves, so that we can continue our pilgrim’s journey with zest and panache next week. (smile) And an important part of all that is doing what our Bit advises. ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’
 
Unfortunately though my brethren, a lot of us don’t seem to believe that and we just go on constantly toting the heavy load that is sin on our frail human shoulders. That’s not wisdom nor common sense my people, for long long ago the Lord promised to forgive our sins if we turned to Him in repentance.
 
Listen to these beautiful, uplifting and encouraging words of the prophet Jeremiah nuh. ‘And they shall teach no more every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord, for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.’ (Jer.31:34)
 
Oh Friends, we all know the faithfulness of our God, so why is it so difficult to embrace that promise eh? Why do we insist on letting our sins weigh us down, when it’s not necessary?
 
Bruh David is a great example of not letting his sins weigh him down too much. He did his thing, but when times got rough, he wasn’t afraid to cry out to the God of his fathers for mercy and forgiveness. Hear this cry of his from Psalm 27 – A prayer for guidance and protection.
 
‘Remember, O Lord, thy tender mercies, and thy LOVING-kindness; for they have been ever of old. Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions: according to thy mercy remember thou me for thy goodness’ sake, O Lord. Good and upright is the Lord; therefore will he teach sinners in the way.
 
The meek (humble) will he guide in judgement (justice): and the meek (humble) will he teach his way. All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth unto such as keep his covenant and his testimonies. For thy name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my iniquity; for it is great.’ (Ps.25:6-12)
 
Ah mih people, we don’t have to wax as poetic and philosophical as Bruh David, but we do have to bring our sins to Almighty God for forgiveness as often as possible, so that we can shed the heavy load that they bring to bear on us. Please remember Jesus’ great invitation to all and sundry.
 
‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt.11:28-30)
 
Oh Friends, there we have it in living colour, straight from Jesus Himself! What shall we do about it eh? Shall we foolishly reject such a wonderful invitation? Or shall we embrace it with joy and gratefulness?
 
I beg to advice that the latter option is the only wise and sensible one. So today, let’s ponder our true relationship with Jesus nuh, and hopefully come to the conclusion, that He is indeed the Truth, the Light, and the Way in this dark world of evil and sin. Much LOVE!
 
…the greatest wisdom mankind can embrace…is that of truly and faithfully following Jesus…

 

 

 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 March 2015 1 John 1:9‏‏

1 John 1:9.      If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

 
Ah Friends, it’s just one of those late nights that naturally morphed into a late morning. And running around in the rain yesterday didn’t help matters any, as my allergies are threatening to act up. (smile) But not to worry; the caffeine is hot, strong and sweet, and we’re riding along with Jesus, which means that all is well. Glory Hallelujah!

We couldn’t want, ask for, or find a better companion to journey with through this confused, troubled and sinful world. And the word for today is ‘LOVE!’

Oh my people, for serious believers in Jesus, LOVE should be our watchword each and every day, because that’s the quality that our Lord and Saviour put forth the most when He came to earth to be the sacrificial lamb for the atonement of our sins.

If He hadn’t LOVED us dearly and deeply, He would have remained resting on His laurels in heaven. But instead, He selflessly and obediently became man, became one of us, so that we could be released from the dark and dangerous abyss of sin in which we were then floundering.

Unfortunately though, too many of us are still floundering in that dark dungeon of sin. However, in keeping with our talk on LOVE, let me share a few words from my ‘p.s. I LOVE YOU’ poster, designed to bring out the LOVE in us. It says that, ‘LOVE is like wildflowers. It’s often found in the most unlikely places.’

And isn’t that the gospel truth Friends! LOVE, the real thing that is, often crops up in places we least expect to find it. So please, in our travels today, let’s be aware, let’s keep a sharp eye out for the LOVE we might find in those unusual places.

And though some say that it’s money which makes the world go round, I believe it’s LOVE! Just look at the numerous households and places where there’s plenty money, but also lot’s of strife and little or no LOVE.

Meanwhile, in so many other households and places, where there’s little or no money, but the absence of strife is very notable, and true LOVE abounds in abundance! (smile) 

Oh Friends, our God is a most wonderful God, please believe that! But you won’t really experience Him in all His glory until you truly surrender yourself to His will and wise plan for your life. That’s when He shows up in bright and living colour!

In other words, God makes His move when we do as our Bit advises: ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’

And that’s the living truth, my brethren! I wouldn’t lead you astray. I’m talking from personal experience, not hearsay. When you put God first in your life and sincerely and diligently work towards obedience and His glorification, you’ll see wonders that you never dreamed of, or even imagined possible!

Yes Friends, until we come to God like Bruh David did in Psalm 38 – The prayer of a penitent heart – and earnestly declare: ‘For I am ready to halt (fall), and my sorrow is continually before me. For I will declare mine iniquity, I will be sorry for my sin.’ (Ps.38.17-18) We won’t fully experience the mercies and LOVING-kindness of our magnanimous God.

And He makes that abundantly clear from this passage in Isaiah, where he calls for repentance from His sinful people, Israel. ‘Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat of the good of the land: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.’ (Is.1:18-20)

Oh my brethren, it couldn’t be put any clearer and simpler than that. And believe me, that provision still stands today. That’s one of the reasons why our world is in such a disastrous mess; we are refusing and rebelling against the Lord.

And the scholars give us some good information, re those verses. ‘1:18-20. The prophet’s appeal to come and reason together reveals God’s gracious invitation to all men. It literally means to be “reasonable” by repenting and turning to God.

Their sin is described as scarlet and red like crimson, referring to their bloodguiltiness before God. The term crimson also means “worm,” referring to the colourfast red dye of the scarlet worm.

The eradication of this stain turns it snowy white and is symbolic of the life-changing grace of God, which delivers men from the guilt and condemnation of sin. Thus the prophet reminds his readers that God stands ready to cleanse and forgive all who turn to Him.’

And Friends, today, I’m re-reminding us of all of that! So please pay serious attention, for it can mean the difference between eternal life and eternal damnation!

And we’ll end with these most appropriate words from Bruh David from Psalm 19 – The creation and covenants of God. ‘Who can understand his errors? Cleanse thou me from secret faults. Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great (much) transgression.

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength (rock), and my redeemer.’ (Ps.19:12-14)

Yes Friends, that is what we need to do today, as we make our pilgrim’s journey through this wicked and deceitful world! Let’s confess our sins, then ask for guidance to do what is right in the sight of the Lord.

If we’re sincere in our requests and desires, then His mercy and LOVING-kindness will be showered down on us, for that’s the faithful kind of Deity He is! Much LOVE!

…confession is good for the soul…and repentance leads to eternal life…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 March 2015 1 John 1:9‏

1 John 1:9.   If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Oh Friends, the ole fella’s heart is somewhat heavy this Wednesday morning after learning yesterday afternoon of the passing of my surrogate sister Diana Chung Rampersad in Trinidad.

You know it was one of those totally unexpected things. I saw the flashing red message light on the phone and idly wondered who was calling about what. Can you imagine my shock and surprise when I listened to the message bearing that most unfortunate news? She was younger than me. My condolences go out to her husband and two children and the rest of her family.

Ah Lord eh! And the sad part is that when I was in T&T last month I called her a couple times and left messages, but got no reply. I wondered why, but now I know that she was sick, on her death-bed with the scourge of this generation, cancer, in one of its many forms.

And it doesn’t seem as though the usual treatments made any difference to her condition. And I can imagine how wasted away she looked. For those of you who have had contact with the disease, you’ll know that it just eats you away, until sometimes you become unrecognizable. And she was always such a bright and perky person.

I first met Di many years ago when she became my mother’s roommate up here in Toronto. And though we didn’t always see eye to eye, we sort of agreed to disagree for my mother’s sake. I must say though that she cared a lot for my mother, even trying to keep that very independent lady on what she considered the straight and narrow path, which led my mother to refer to Di as her grandmother.

She was the only person who could boss around my mother and get away with it. Hn, hn! Sometimes though, Di would come to me and say in conspiratorial tones, ‘Randolph, your mother is something else yes!’ and then outline some unexpected doings of my mother.

My mother always considered Di to be the daughter she never had, and Di played that part very well and very faithfully, to the point of coming up here from T&T when my mother died and helping me with the funeral arrangements and cleaning up of her apartment.

Consequently, I can imagine their reunion in heaven must be a big one. They both have ended their earthly suffering and gone on to their heavenly peace and joy. There’s nothing better we can ask for.

This past week the Lord has also called home the fathers of two of my other friends, but they were somewhat older and been sick for a while, so it wasn’t so unexpected. I pray for all the families involved, that the Lord will give them the necessary strength and faith to stand strong in their time of mourning.

And last, but definitely not least, I pray for successful surgery in the U.S on my brother’s legs, for some vein problems. He had one leg done yesterday, and will have the other done tomorrow. Please offer a pray for Him too, since there’s great power in the prayer of the righteous.

Now let’s turn to our Bit, the same as yesterday. ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’

Oh Friends, I don’t know about you all nuh, but I am ever so glad and grateful for that very forgiving nature of our God! It means that though we make mistakes, we don’t have to fear His awesome power, His wrath, because it is always clothed in LOVE and forgiveness.

And since we have a sinful nature by birth, it means that we will always be susceptible to sin. And as John wisely says in the verse before our Bit: ‘If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.’ (1 John 1:8) And that’s a fact my people. ‘For all have sinned, and come (fallen) short of the glory of God.’ (Rom.3:23)

So sin is an unfortunate constant in our human nature since the fall of our forefathers Adam and Eve. But our God is such a wonderful and thoughtful and caring Deity, that He has made provision for our sinfulness, through the shed blood of Christ on the cross at Calvary and through our confession of those sins.

Listen to Cousin Sol from Proverbs 28. ‘He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.’ (Prov.28:13)

Oh my people, my people, what news can be better than that eh? Only eternal life through Jesus Christ! No other Deity operates like our great God! And yuh tell me I wouldn’t LOVE and serve and surrender my will to Him! Chuh! Pure foolishness my brethren, pure foolishness!

Right there is the answer to all our prayers: forgiveness of sins through confession, and eternal life through belief in Jesus Christ! That surely is the way, my people. There’s no other way on this fallen earth that makes any sense.

And if you don’t believe me, then listen to Bruh David as he pleads for cleansing and forgiveness after his adulterous affair with Bathsheba, and arranging to have her husband Uriah killed in battle. He thought that he had gotten away with it, but when the prophet Nathan draped him up about it, he realized that the Good Lord had seen and taken notice.

So he pleads in Psalm 51: ‘Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy LOVING-kindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgression: and my sin is ever before me.

Against thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified (found just) when thou speakest, and be clear (blameless) when thou judgest.’ (Ps.51:1-4)

Yes Friends, though Bruh David had committed such a heinous sin, once he sincerely confessed it before Almighty God, he was granted mercy. The same thing goes for us even today. But we must confess the sins to be forgiven. ‘Unconfessed’ sin is definitely not in our best interests.

Now please don’t think that we won’t have to pay for our sins, because there are always consequences to them, but once confessed and forgiven they are thrown away, never to be remembered by God. Listen to this promise from Isaiah. ‘I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.’ (Is.43:25)

Oh my brethren, we can’t ask for anything better than what our magnificent and magnanimous God has offered and provided; forgiveness from sin and eternal life through Christ Jesus.

So please let’s stop playing the fool here on earth with all its bright and glittering sin and shame, and instead get serious about our heavenly lives, reserve a spot in eternity with Jesus, for that’s the ultimate wisdom. Much LOVE!

…as Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) would say…obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him…that’s the best way to live this earthly life…

 

 
 

 

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