Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 May 2016 Matthew 5:16.‏

 Matthew 5:16.   Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Oh friends, oh friends, it’s another beautiful Tuesday on God’s earthly heaven! Glory be to our heavenly Father! It means we’ve been granted another day with God’s breath of life still flowing rich and strong through our physical bodies! 

And for that we ought to be most thankful, be ever grateful for all that He’s done for us in the past, is doing for us right now, and has faithfully promised to fulfill in the future. Now that also ought to lead us to offering some sincere thanks and praise to His most holy and honourable name. 

And the best way to give thanks and praise, to offer sincere gratitude and gratefulness is in joyful song. So let’s sing praises and give thanks to our Creator and Provider! Let’s shout out this powerful gospel song that I recently heard. Heard it a few times on different radio stations too. 

The singer is blessed with the name Tasha Cobbs, and I believe she was in Toronto last weekend for a live concert. The song is appropriately titled, ‘Power in the name of Jesus.’ 

Please sing it with me. ‘There is power in the name of Jesus. There is power in the name of Jesus. Yes there is power in the name of Jesus…. To break every chain… Break every chain…Break every chain. 

There’s an army rising up. There’s and army rising up. There’s an army rising up…To break every chain…Break every chain…Break every chain. 

There is power in the name of Jesus. There is power in the name of Jesus. Oh there is power in the name of Jesus…To break every chain…Break every chain…Break every chain…’ 

Now friends, I’m doing this from memory, but I’m pretty sure that’s how the song goes. In any case, that’s our version. (smile) 

And oh yes my fellow believers, there is indeed power…and awesome power at that, in the holy and majestic name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! A power so absolute and strong that it’s able to break any chain that binds us, any chain that holds us captive to the evil tendencies of this evil world! Glory Hallelujah! 

So please, let’s never forget that remarkable power and use it to break whatever is binding us to the things of this world. And now, since it’s Tuesday, let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with much sincerity and sense of purpose. 

All together now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen.’ 

Oh my people, whenever we declare that mantra, I just feel real uplifted in my spirit. Why? I’m not sure. But I guess it’s because it defines me in the best way possible: the beloved of God and a friend of Jesus! 

Now there could never be a better definition of who we are than that…And better still, NO ONE can take it from us! Oh glory to our great God my believing brethren! 

That brings us to our Bit; the avid desire and command of our Leader, Jesus Christ. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ 

Unfortunately though my people, that is one command we don’t seem to be following too well because instead of coming to Christ, people are walking away from Him in droves. That’s definitely not good my fellow believers, because it means we’re not doing our part to assure the success of Christ’s LOVE Revolution. 

Through fear and pressure from the evil world, we are allowing our spirits to fall into a sad state of disrepair; a malaise of enormous proportions seems to have taken over the Christian brotherhood, where we don’t fight as much and as hard as we used to do for our beliefs. 

That’s not right my brethren. We are supposed to be soldiers in Christ’s army, and soldiers are supposed to fight; to fight tooth and nail for what they believe in! 

What’s happening with us eh? Don’t we believe anymore? Or are we just comfortable and contented and want to enjoy the things of the world? Or are we simply so scared of Lucifer and His evil minions that we refuse to fight for what we say we believe in? 

I don’t have the answers nuh friends. But I do know that we’re definitely not letting our light shine sufficiently before our fellow men, they’re not seeing enough of our good works, and thus are not glorifying our heavenly Father the way that He desires. 

And we’ll end with an appropriate call from Bruh David from Psalm 22 – A cry of anguish and song of praise. ‘Ye that fear the Lord, praise him; all ye the seed (descendants) of Jacob, glorify him; and fear him (hold Him in awesome reverence), all ye the seed of Israel. 

For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard.’ (Ps.22:23-24) 

Ah mih people, let’s try and do better than we doing nuh! Let’s look deep inside and see where we are falling down, then with all sincerity and truth call upon the Lord to help us. As Bruh David says, He will hear and help us. Much LOVE!

…Christ’s earthly army needs a boost…probably a good, swift kick in the tail…to get us going like we ought…

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 May 2016 Matthew 5:16.

 Matthew 5:16.  Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

And then it was Monday… But fortunately, for many people it’s not a work day. In the U.S. it’s the Memorial Day Holiday weekend, where the brave men and women who died while serving their country in the military forces are remembered and honoured. 

Meanwhile in T& T (Trinidad and Tobago) it’s a holiday celebrating Indian Arrival Day. That was the memorable day of May 30th 1845 when the Fath Al Razak docked in the harbor of Port of Spain with two hundred and something adult Indians; the first set of Indentured (contract) Workers from India. 

Slavery had been abolished and it was difficult to find labourers to work in the sugar cane fields, so the Colonial masters turned to a new form of human abuse and degradation. I don’t know if it was any better than the slavery the African people suffered, because it was still back breaking labour and the Massa still held the upper hand. 

If my history memory serves me right, I believe they were contracted for something like seven years and then were free to do their own thing on a plot of land so generously given to them by the plantation owners. Anyway, that’s how the diverse culture of T&T began, and continued down through the years with all sorts of other races coming to settle there. 

That’s why T&T women are also some of the most beautiful in the world – and that’s no lie – (smile) with the progeny of all the different races mixed together. 

Anyway, last weekend we in Canada were showing off with our Victoria Day holiday, now it’s our turn to face the music this Monday morning and go out to labour. And as always, to help us get up to speed, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with plenty gusto and sincerity. 

As one heavenly choir 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!’ 

Ah mih people, that wasn’t so hot nuh. Chuh! You could tell that the U.S. and T&T people with their hoarse, raspy voices were already into their cups. Hn! Our choirmaster, Jesus, just shook His head and sighed a knowing sigh. 

And I guess I’ll have to take a little of the blame for that since I forgot to offer Granny’s warning per these long holiday weekends. ‘Sonny Boy, please, ah beg yuh; drunk or sober, please mind yuh business!’ 

And as true believers, we definitely have to remember that, because when we get into the celebrations, especially the fire breathing ‘waters’, we lose all sense of responsibility and give the ever lurking enemy a chance to get into our soul and disrupt it. 

And with a disrupted soul we obviously can’t do what Jesus asks of us in our Bit. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ 

When our brain is all muddled and befuddled our lights definitely are not shining, neither are we doing good works. And we’re definitely not glorifying our heavenly Father, but rather letting Him down, sullying His holy name. 

So all you friends in the U.S and T&T, please be careful, let’s not spoil the good thing we have going, with our wonderful, ever-faithful, ever-LOVING God. 

Now let’s check out what Bruh Paul had to say to his apostolic delegate Titus on the subject. ‘But speak thou the things which become (are proper for) sound doctrine… In all things showing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine showing uncorruptness (integrity), gravity (reverence), sincerity (incorruptibility), Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part (an opponent) may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.‘ (Titus 2:1,7-8) 

Yes friends, it’s important that the enemy doesn’t have anything bad to say about us, as Peter talks about per suffering and reward. ‘Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation (conduct) in Christ. 

For it is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing. For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened (made alive) by the Spirit.’ (1 Pet.3:16-18) 

Ah mih people, a Christian’s life can be indeed be difficult and somewhat unfair at times, but overall, believe me, it is very rewarding. And we’ll close with some explanations from the scholars. ‘3:16. A good conscience refers to a clear conscience, that is, one void of offense.’ 

‘3:17. In the will of God we are sometimes called on to suffer for well-doing as a testimony to others.’ ‘3:18. That he might bring us to God means in order that Christ might bring us to, or give us access to God.’  

Oh my brethren, none of us like pain and suffering, but it is the lot of our sinful nature, and if we sincerely turn to God in our times of distress, He will give us the wherewithal to bear it. Please remember that. Now let’s go out and continue the good fight so that Jesus’ LOVE Revolution can be successful! Much LOVE!

…stand up, stand up for Jesus…the trumpet call obey…till every foe is vanquished…and Christ is Lord indeed…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 May 2016 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.    Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Well my people, a new week has begun! Yes it’s Sunday, the Lord’s Day, the day for worshipping and praising and fellowshipping and rejuvenating our spirits at God’s sanctuary, or wherever two or three of God’s children choose to gather! 

That’s the beauty of our faith; we don’t have to meet in a physical building, although that’s nice, but we can meet anywhere at all, under any conditions, and still invoke the Spirit of Christ to lead us in praise and worship. 

Neither do we have to always meet in great numbers, although that too would be desirable, but we can have church with only two or three believers. I remember doing that some years ago. On a particularly cold winter’s morn, just the priest, Rev. Anne, the lay reader and I showed up for the 8.30 service. So they called me up to the altar, and we had church. 

And you know there’s something about having church with only a few people that I like. I don’t know if it’s because there seems to be more intimacy with God and with each other. As the saying goes, there’s more room for God in an empty church. (smile) 

Anyway, enough of my rambling, let’s move along, because we have plenty stuff to share this last Sunday morning in May of 2016. And we are going to begin with this prayerful poem of Gramps Schuller (Robert H. Schuller) from his Hour of Power Devotional. It’s called ‘Fill Me!’ And it was so fine, I had to play it one more time. (smile) 

Please pray with me. ‘O Lord, like the thirsty deer which goes to drink from the mountain spring; like the growing flower which turns hungrily to the satisfying sun; like the empty pitcher which is carried to the fountain to be filled; so I come, O God, knowing that in this time of prayer my soul will be filled with your LOVE and your truth. Thank you! Amen.’ 

Yes Friends, we definitely need our souls to be filled with God’s LOVE and truth so that we can sincerely and successfully perform what Jesus asks of us in our Bit. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ 

Remember yesterday we spoke about being the salt of the earth and the light of the world; our condition and our mission? Well that salt and light ought to morph into good works which will glorify, exalt, and raise the esteem of our heavenly Father. The unbeliever will see our faithful service and thus come to embrace the living Christ as their Lord and Saviour too. 

Now Jesus, as is His wont, is putting it nicely to us here my fellow believers, but He didn’t have to, because that’s our bounden duty, it’s our main purpose here on earth, why we were created in the first place; to have fellowship with God, to glorify and exalt Him with our truly Christian conduct and consequently lead others to Him. 

And I hope that we sincerely pondered our individual situations on the subject as I asked, and then prayed to God for help to rectify and/or improve our personal testimonies of being salt and light in a dark, bland and evil world. 

Oh my people, it’s ever so important that we let our lights shine brilliantly wherever we are so that Jesus’ LOVE Revolution can grow, and we can spread the good news of His gospel to the entire world as He commanded in the Great Commission. 

‘Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples of) all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always(s), even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt.28:19-20) 

Yes friends, all of that is included in being salt and light on God’s great earth! 

Now hear how Peter puts it when he talks about living as servants of God. ‘Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; 

Having your conversation (conduct) honest (honourable) among the Gentiles: that whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation. 

Submit yourselves to every ordinance (institution) of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors; as unto them sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. 

For so is the will of God that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men. As free, and not using your liberty for a cloak of maliciousness (evil), but as the servants of God. Honour all men, LOVE the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.’ (1 Pet.2:11-17) 

Yes my brethren, that’s basically how we as Christians, followers of Christ, ought to live! Submit to authority, have a kind heart to everyone, especially to fellow believers, and above all, honour, reverence, fear, glorify and exalt Almighty God, our Creator and Provider! 

Now, as we all know, it’s not easy living sincerely and successfully for Christ in this evil world, filled with numerous lusts and temptations, but if we walk and talk and be led by the Holy Spirit of God that dwells within us, we can make a positive difference in the world. 

And yuh know friends, that’s all Jesus really desires of us; to make a positive difference in our earthly sojourn, no matter how small and seemingly negligible it might be. We can’t all be worldly movers and shakers, but we can ALL be effective believers and doers of the Word in our small spheres of influence. So let’s do it nuh. Much LOVE!

…even the smallest good deed in Christ’s name…will be well rewarded by our heavenly Father…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 May 2016 Matthew 5:13-14

 Matthew 5:13 -14    Ye are the salt of the earth… Ye are the light of the world…

Ah friends it’s Saturday morning once again. What plans do we have in store for this memorable day eh? Note, every day in our lives is a memorable one because we have been granted only so many and thus we need to make the most of each one, for we don’t know how many more we’ll see, if any. 

As they say, yesterday’s gone, today is here, and no one knows about tomorrow. So the only thing we really ever have is TODAY! That means we have to use it wisely. And to help us do that, here are two quotes from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us.  

The first quote says: ‘Face your fear. Procrastination is the fear of success. People procrastinate because they are afraid of the success that they know will result if they move ahead now. Because success is heavy, carries a responsibility with it, it is much easier to procrastinate and live on the “someday I’ll” philosophy.’ 

And there is much truth to that friends. A lot of us are afraid of success, for whatever reason, and therefore don’t put out all the God-given talent that we have at the time when it will make the most difference. I’ve noticed it in a few associates over the years. They were people just brimming over with talent in their particular field, but they just refused to hunker down and make a real success of it, always seeking the easiest way out. 

And the next quote from Anselm tells us: Finish it.  Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task.’ 

Now that one I can personally testify to my brethren, as no doubt a lot of you can. Nothing is as discombobulating and frustrating as an unfinished task. It keeps bugging you to finish it, but you keep putting it off until the last minute, when it’s either too late or you don’t do a good job on it. 

So the moral of the story it to just get on with whatever you have to do; don’t procrastinate, don’t put it off for another day or time… unless you’re very sure that the Lord has told you to leave it for later. (smile) 

And having said all of that we come to a rather appropriate Bit to support those contentions in the life of the Christian believer. ‘Ye are the salt of the earth…ye are the light of the world…’ 

That’s paraphrasing Jesus words after He declared the Beatitudes. Now let’s hear them in their entirety. ‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 

Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lampstand); and it giveth light to all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:13-16)  

There we have it my fellow believers; the basic essence of how our Christian faith and beliefs ought to play out in this fearful and ungodly world! 

Now hear the scholars on those verses: ‘5:13. The Beatitudes are followed by a summary statement of the basic character of the Christian’s life as salt and light. Ye are the salt of the earth: Again the phrase “ye are” indicates that only the genuinely born again person is salt and can help meet the needs of the world. Salt adds flavouring, acts as a preservative, melts coldness, and heals wounds. Thus it is a very appropriate description of the believer in his relationship to the world in which he lives.’ 

And the scholars continue: ‘5:14-16. Ye are the light of the world describes the essential mission of the Christian to the world. He is the condition (salt) to meet the world’s needs and he has a mission (light) to the world. His light is to clearly shine forth into the darkness of human depravity. 

He is to set his light upon a candlestick, not hide it under a bushel, that is, a basket. Darkness is the absence of light; and darkness alone cannot dispel the light, but the smallest light can dispel the greatest darkness.’ 

And all of God’s people declared a loud ‘Amen’ to that, because it is indisputable, scientifically proven truth! Light always has mastery over darkness, that’s why our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ wants us to be lights in this world of immense darkness.  

And a good analogy of that would be the old lighthouses that you found on so many rocky promontories years aback; they were there to light the way for the sea traveller enveloped so completely by the darkness of the night on the broad expanse of water. That’s how we are supposed to be my people; like lighthouses beaming the light of Christ into this ever darkening world. 

Now that’s our mission, but don’t forget our condition: to be the salt of the earth, to add flavour, healing, help and basically meet the needs of our fellow man. Unfortunately though, too many of us supposed believers are hiding our lights under a bushel, and we have lost all of our saltiness, that’s why our world is in such a mess. 

Friends, we need to be out there meeting needs and showing the way like Jesus did. It’s what He’s expecting of us. Remember, unless we lead the way, His LOVE Revolution will never become successful. His hope for future glory is very dependent on us His supposed followers. We are His foot soldiers, paving the way and saying like John the Baptist did in Jesus’ time. ‘Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ (Matt.3:2) 

Likewise, Isaiah wasn’t only talking about John the Baptist, but also about us, when he prophesied . ‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.’ (Is.40:3, Matt.3:3). 

Yes friends, it is now up to us to fight the good fight. It all depends on us now, so today let’s take some time and sincerely ponder our individual situations, as to whether we are truly salt and light on this dark and evil planet. And whatever our conclusion, please, let’s ask the Lord to help us be what we ought to be. He will never refuse such a request. Much LOVE!

…a Christian should never abort his mission…regardless of his condition…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 May 2016 Ecclesiastes 3:1

Ecclesiastes 3:1.   To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.

Summertime, Summertime, Summertime, Summertime! Thank God it’s Friday in the summertime! Mama yo! We leaving work early to beat the traffic, heading for the cottage to spend a marvellous weekend; eating, drinking, boating, swimming and fishing! Wow! The barbecues will be on fire, and the beer will be ice cold… Oh Lord, thank you for Fridays in the summertime!’ 

Yes friends, that’s the mantra of a lot of people on a Friday in the summertime, as they head for cottage country and their lakeside getaways. Consequently, many of them miss church and the wonderful fellowship and rejuvenation of spirit that comes with it. 

And then the boating accidents proliferate, because now they are drinking and driving on the water, just as they do on land. Every summer you hear of several mishaps on the water because of the brown girl in the bottle. Ah Lord eh! 

But for us few, who know how to spend a proper weekend, let’s chant our Friday Chant, so that we can get the right perspective. As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yes my brethren, that’s more like the focus we should have for the weekend; a nice balance of rest, recreation and fellowship. And today I want to share an interesting and important quote attributed to Lord Chesterfield, Philip Dormer Stanhope (1694-1773), 4th Earl of Chesterfield. I believe I’ve shared it before, but as they say, when it’s nice, you’ve got to play it at least twice. (smile) 

Lord Chesterfield is reputed to have said: ‘Know the true value of time; snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it. No idleness, no laziness, no procrastination, never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.’ 

And that my brethren is the god-awesome truth! We can’t afford to fool with, or waste time, because time waits on no one, it just goes along its own rollicking way, whether you decide to use it wisely or not. 

Remember the saying too that procrastination is the thief of time. More awesome truth! The more we put off, the less we get done and the less time we have left in our bank. Unfortunately we don’t know how much total time is in our account. 

So please, let’s learn to pay better and closer attention to our time because Almighty God has given us just enough to do whatever He desires, and if we waste it, we obviously won’t complete all that He has planned for us. End of sermon. (smile) 

That brings us to our Bit, the well-known verse of wisdom from Cousin Sol, writing as the preacher in Ecclesiastes. ‘To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.’ More indisputable truth my people, because as Christians, truth is all we ought to ever deal in. 

And after our Bit, Cousin Sol goes on to list a whole set of positive and negative things to which time have been apportioned. Like ‘a time to be born, a time to die… A time to weep, and a time to laugh…A time to LOVE, and a time to hate…’ Just read Ecclesiastes 3 and you’ll see how he has it all nicely laid out. 

Now here is some info from the scholars on that scripture. ‘3:1-8. As Solomon reflects on all of life, he expresses a beautiful poem of 14 pairs of opposite events that God has a sovereign design behind all events (cf. Rom.8:28). To gather stones (v.5) refers to the process of clearing land for planting or building. To hate (v.8) means to withdraw from intimacy and should not always be taken in an absolute sense (cf. Mal.1:2-3).’  

Yes friends, there’s no real time ever for the true sense of the word hating. It’s not supposed to exist in a Christian’s vocabulary. 

Now let’s look at a couple of other scriptures which deal with time in the life of man, starting with the words of Ethan the Ezrahite from Psalm 89 – God’s sure promises to David. ‘The days of his youth hast thou shortened: thou hast covered him with shame.   Selah.  

How long, Lord? Wilt thou hide thyself for ever? Shall thy wrath burn like fire? Remember how short my time is: wherefore hast thou made all men in vain (for what futility hast thou made all men)? What man is he that liveth and shall not see (experience) death? Shall he deliver his soul from the hand (power) of the grave?’ (Ps.89:44-48) 

Now listen to Moses from Psalm 90 – From everlasting to everlasting thou art God. ‘The days of our years are threescore years and ten (the span of our lives is seventy years); and if by reason of strength they be fourscore (80) years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow (their boast only labour); for it is soon cut off, and we fly away. 

Who knoweth the power of thine anger? Even according to thy fear, so is thy wrath. So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom (gain a heart of wisdom).’ (Ps.90:10-12) 

Yes my fellow believers, we know not how long our time on earth will be, so please let’s use whatever we have wisely nuh, meaning in the pursuit of the things of God and heaven, not those of the world and the evil one. Much LOVE!

…no one knows the time nor the hour…of their earthly demise…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 May 2016 Ephesians 6:11‏‏‏

Ephesians 6:11.    Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (schemes) of the devil.

Greetings and salutations my wonderful Scrip-Bit family on this glorious Thursday morning! It’s another most worthwhile opportunity for us to serve our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ in this evil and ungodly world. 

In fact, it’s not a choice, but our bounden duty as believers, and we only heap ridicule on Jesus’ holy name if we don’t pursue that challenge as we ought to. 

And there’s no time to lose, so let’s get busy and declare our Thursday Blessings that will feed our faith, uplift us, and give us the wherewithal to go out and face the enemy with much needed belly and backbone. 

Altogether now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! 

I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! 

I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Oh glory to our wonderful God my precious people, for He has generously gifted us with all that we need to succeed in this sinful world! Now let’s go out and succeed… 

But first we need to do this absolutely necessary thing as directed by our Bit: ‘Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (schemes) of the devil.’ 

Yes friends, without God’s protective armour, we’re just like innocent, naïve, sitting ducks for the enemy. He’d be all over us in no time at all. That’s why Bruh Paul seriously warned us about wearing God’s armour at all times. 

And I’m going to repeat the verses of yesterday about what the spiritual armour of God consists of, because I want to share some very useful info from the scholars on the subject. And don’t get hoighty toighty with me now because you think we’re wasting time by repeating those verses. (smile) 

Friends, we can never hear those verses enough since they are a major part of our basic Christian foundation and the deeper we write them into our souls, the better off we will be. 

Now hear Bruh Paul pontificate. ‘Stand therefore, having your loins girt about (girded your waist) with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench the fiery darts of the wicked (one). 

And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.’ (Eph.6:14-18) 

Listen to the scholars now: ‘6:14-17. The whole armour of God consists of six pieces. (1) Truth (v.14a) is a knowledge of the truth of God’s Word (cf.4:21). The ancient soldiers loins (waist) were girt about with a leather belt which held most of the other pieces of his armour in place. 

Similarly, the other pieces of the Christian’s armour depend on, and are held in place by his spiritual “belt” or his knowledge of the “truth” of Scripture. 

(2) The breastplate of righteousness (v.14b) may be read “the breastplate which is righteousness.” It represents a holy character and moral conduct. Obedience to the “truth” known produces a godly life (righteousness). 

(3) Preparation of the gospel of peace (v15) means “eagerness that comes from the gospel of peace.” That is, as the Roman soldier wore special shoes called caligae on his feet, enabling him to advance against his enemy, so the Christian must have on his feet (possess) a sense of “eagerness” or “willingness” to advance against the Devil and take the fight to him. 

Such “eagerness” to contend with Satan “comes from the gospel of peace.” The gospel gives peace to the believer, freeing him from anxiety though he advances against such a powerful opponent. 

(4) The shield of (which is) faith (v.16) means taking God at His word by believing His promises. Such trust will protect one from doubts induced by Satan. 

(5) The helmet of salvation (v.17a): Since the readers are already Christians (2:8), they are not here urged to be saved. First Thessalonians 5:8 describes this helmet as “the hope of salvation” that is, the certainty (assurance) of salvation. 

(6) The sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God (v.17b): The Greek term rendered “word” is not logos, referring to the whole Word of God, but rhema, referring to certain portions or selected verses of Scripture.’ 

And that takes care of the basic armour of God. But we’re not done yet my people. Listen to these other explanations from the scholars. 

‘6:18. Praying is grammatically linked to “stand” in verse 14. Without prayer God’s armour is inadequate to achieve victory. Prayer is indispensable. Always means “on every occasion,” that is, when Satan attacks. 

In the Spirit signifies that with the Spirit’s help such prayer for divine aid is made. Watching thereunto means “being vigilant in this very matter” of prayer. They are to pray not just for themselves but also for all saints; spiritual combat is both an individual and corporate matter.’ 

And thus ends this refresher course on the armour of God! (smile) Oh friends, I know that some of the explanations might be somewhat confusing, but if you take your time and concentrate on what you read, you will understand what’s been said. 

And above all, please note the indispensability of prayer! Without it, the armour of God is ineffective. Now may the Lord bless and keep us as we go forth clothed in His protective armour, totally backed up by sincere prayer! Much LOVE!

…no Christian soldier goes out to battle without his godly armour…and prayer…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 May 2016 Ephesians 6:11‏‏

Ephesians 6:11.   Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (schemes) of the devil.

Oh my people, who ever says that life isn’t good eh, tell them I say that deh lie! (smile)

Oh, like everybody else, I have my spate of problems, but I try to put them at God’s feet at the cross, per His Great Invitation to come and unburden ourselves on Him. (Matt.11:28-30) And that leaves me more time to enjoy His beautifully created universe. 

Now, I guess you all must be wondering what has me waxing so ecstatically this early, on a somewhat cloudy morning? Well it’s no rocket science friends. It’s simply because for the first time this year, I was able to sit comfortably on my front porch at two a.m and commune with my Maker. Oh glory to God mih people! 

And those of you who know me, know that I’m just a simple man with simple tastes, thus simple things enthuse me. 

And when I can sit on my porch in the early hours of the morning in the north country, without much clothes on, feeling the cool wind blow over me, and hear it rustle the the leaves of the fully clothed trees with song, as I look out over the quiet boulevard in a fairly decent neighbourhood, admire the lights in the surrounding gardens, and spy at the beautiful full moon through the dry, gnarled branches of the dead ash tree on my front lawn – got to cut it down soon yes – and above all, commune quietly with my God, then I must be thrilled! I couldn’t be anything other than that! 

It’s almost like being in Paradise – Sweet Tobago. All I’m missing now is the gentle crashing of the sea on the rocky shoreline. Mama Mia! So how can I not be happy eh mih breddren? Oh friends, it just makes me want to sing, to shout in praise and thanksgiving! 

So let’s do that nuh. Everyday we talk about ‘This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. (Ps.118:24) Well the best part of rejoicing is singing praise and worship and thanksgiving. 

So please sing with me, the chorus of another of my favourite gospel songs that I recently heard; a nice li’l rocking reggae ditty by Jermain Cowan titled ‘Re-Arrange my life.’ 

Singing: ‘Things I used to do, I do them no more. Since You saved me. Places I used to go, I go there no more. Lord for You I rearranged my life. Jehovah, please stay by my side.’ 

And Again: ‘Things I used to do, I do them no more. Since you saved me. Places I used to go, I go there no more. Lord for You I rearranged my life. Jehovah please stay by my side.’ 

Oh friends, that’s how Christians are supposed to be when we get saved and become new creations in Jesus! And what more can we ask than for Jehovah God to stand always by our side eh? Not much. And we know He’ll do it, because He’s faithful to His promises. 

And we’re not done singing and rejoicing this morning my breddren. It’s Wednesday, that means we have to wail out our Wednesday Wail. 

So wailing, with sincerity and strong faith: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. 

My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Ah my fellow believers, how good it is to feel the breath of life coursing through our mortal bodies this morning, especially when we’re walking steadfastly with Jesus, looking forward to the glorious future He has promised. Glory Hallelujah! 

Now I’m chuckling here because I don’t know if we have much time and space left for our Bit. But since we’ve been rejoicing and singing praise and worship and giving thanks, it surely means that we’re in full agreement with it. 

Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (schemes) of the devil.’ 

Yeh friends, we can’t give our great and wonderful God thanks and praise without having on at least some of His protective spiritual armour. Now finally, let’s see what that armour of God consists of. 

Listen to Bruh Paul enlighten the Ephesians and us. ‘Stand therefore, having your loins girt about (girded your waist) with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked (one). 

And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.’ (Eph.6:14-18) 

Yes my breddren, that’s basically what the armour of God consists of. And we’ll end there so we can ponder it all. Tomorrow, God in favour, we’ll get into a deeper discourse of all the ramifications. (smile) 

Till then though, please, let’s walk in LOVE and true fellowship, wisely eschewing, abstaining from the lusts of the world for the rewards of heaven. For that’s the true mark of wisdom. Much LOVE!

…once the lifeblood of God is flowing through a Christian…songs of praise and thanksgiving must emanate from his mouth…

 

 

 

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