Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 July 2017 Job 13:15a.

Job 13:15a.   Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him…

Up and at ‘em friends! The trump’s sounding the wake up call, and we can’t afford to tarry, for he who tarries is lost. (smile) 

Yeh mih people, unfortunately it’s Monday morning and work calls, got to get out and make some bread to keep the family going, keep them in the fashion to which they’ve become accustomed. 

In addition to that, we also need to get out there and do Jesus’ work; important work that He’s depending on us to do – spreading His word to all and sundry so that they can receive salvation and eternal life, for the Father doesn’t want to lose even one of His creation to Beelzebub. So you see it’s of the utmost importance that we get up and get a move on.  

And I know some of us find it hard to get going on a Monday morning, for whatever reason, that’s why we have the appropriate antidote for your Monday problems. It’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn and it activates all our faculties, gets the adrenaline flowing so we can function like the true conquerors we are in Jesus. 

So let’s shout it out now nuh, in strong voice and much gusto. ‘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!’ 

Good showing friends, good showing! Our choirmaster Jesus was pleased with that rendition. Now let’s keep the energy and the adrenaline flowing by getting out onto the highways and byways with Jesus first place in our hearts. And let’s profoundly proclaim like Job did in our Bit: ‘Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him…’ 

Yeh friends, unconditional trust in Jesus Christ is essential in our faith walk. As Job said, though the Lord put him under, he would still trust him. That takes mucho mucho faith. And unfortunately, it’s only as we go through trials and tribulations that we build faith. That’s why so many righteous people in the Bible went through so much calamity. 

Check out Moses, Bruh Joseph, Bruh David and Bruh Paul. They were champions of faith, but they also suffered much tribulation for their belief. But yuh know what fellow believers, throughout all their trials the Lord was with them every moment and every step of the way. 

The Good Book tells us that in every rough spot Bruh Joseph found himself, God was with him and made him well-liked. And listen to his words when he finally accosted his scalawag brothers as Prime Minister of Egypt, the second most powerful man in the most powerful country in the world, when they came begging for food in the time of famine. ‘But as for you, ye thought (intended) evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.’ (Gen.50:20) 

Likewise friends, a lot of times when disaster strikes us, God is allowing it to make us strong, to prepare us for our destiny. Look at the amount of stuff Bruh David went through after he was anointed by Samuel, but before he actually became king. That was to prepare him for the immense task of kingship. And he turned out to be the best king Israel ever had. 

But listen to his words from Psalm 52 – Caution to the prideful wicked – words that are not as popular as some others, but still very meaningful. ‘Lo, this is the man that made not God his strength, but trusted in the abundance of his riches, and strengthened himself in his wickedness (destruction). But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God: I trust in the mercy of God for ever and ever. I will praise thee for ever, because thou hast done it: and I will wait on thy name; for it is good before thy saints.’ (Ps.52:7-9) 

Wow! What a powerful declaration of trust on Bruh David’s part, despite all the calamity he went through. And don’t talk about Bruh Paul…Hn! His life was just one calamity after the other; shipwreck, beatings, stoning’s, jail, etc. etc. But hear his words to the Corinthians.

‘For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble (tribulation) which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure (burdened), above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life. But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead. Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us.’ (2 Cor.1:8-10) 

Now that is what you call great faith, which can only be based on great trust in Almighty God! So friends, I implore us this Monday morning as we get back into work mode, please, let’s keep Jesus first and foremost in our hearts, souls, bodies and minds as He desires of us, so that we can do His work. Let’s trust Him implicitly and thus grow in faith. Much LOVE!

… faith grows…when trust grows…and vice-versa…one cannot grow without the other…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 July 2017 1 Corinthians 15:57.

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

Well friends, the 150th Canadian Birthday Party continues unabated. And though it was constrained a little by an afternoon thunder storm, after that, the sun came out brightly and the outside celebrations went on with much zest and enthusiasm, with brilliant fireworks filling the night air in many parts of the Greater Toronto Area. 

Now some people felt that all the hoopla was somewhat hypocritical because of the blemishes on our Canadian record, re the very poor treatment of the Aboriginal People up to this day, plus the insensitive handling of Chinese and Japanese immigrants during the Great War, not to mention the racism and sexism that are currently rearing their ugly heads. 

And all of those are serious problems for us to address, but if we only focus on our bad side, then no country would ever have cause to celebrate because every one has its own dark and evil problems and secrets. At least, hopefully, if we come together to celebrate a major anniversary, that togetherness will help to dissipate some of the current animosity found in our society. 

But even if we’re not together in our country, please, let’s show that we are together in our churches, in the Body of Christ, as we offer sacrifices of praise and worship in His sanctuary this Sunday morning. And today’s hymn is the old stalwart ‘At the Cross.’ So let’s rock God’s house my faithful brethren with powerful song. 

‘Alas, and did my Savior bleed? And did my Sovereign die? Would He devote that sacred head For such a worm as I? (Refrain: At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day!) Was it for crimes that I had done, He groaned upon the tree? Amazing pity!  grace unknown! And LOVE beyond degree! (Refrain)

Well might the sun in darkness hide, And shut his glories in, When Christ, the mighty Maker died, For man the creature’s sin. (Refrain) But drops of grief can ne’er repay The debt of LOVE I owe: Here, Lord, I give myself away ’Tis all that I can do. (Refrain: At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day!’ 

Oh friends, the cross of Jesus is ever so significant in our Christian faith, for it’s there where Jesus sacrificed His life so that we could be reconciled with God and have the wonderful options of salvation and eternal life. Wow! It is indeed the centrepiece of our faith! It’s where everything begins and ends! Without it, we’d be nothing, still mere slaves to the evil Lucifer, facing death and eternal separation from Almighty God, our Creator. 

But thanks to Jesus, hanging in shame and utter cruelty on that tree at Calvary, we’ve been set free from every kind of bondage. Glory to God my people! And as the song says, once we’ve seen the light at the cross, all our burdens are rolled away, and we can be happy each and every day! Mama Mia! Thank the Lord for Jesus yes! 

And as Bruh Paul so aptly puts it in our Bit: ‘But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ Now that’s the awesome truth my fellow believers? Without Christ, we’d have no victory whatsoever! That’s why we have to be ever so thankful and show proper gratitude for all of God’s great mercies towards us. 

Remember, He didn’t have to do anything for us. But because we were His creation, and so dear to His heart, He couldn’t just sit by and see us all go the way of Beelzebub! And Jesus didn’t have to give of Himself so selflessly and sacrificially either, but He delighted in doing the Father’s will, even though it was outrageously painful and shameful. 

That’s why the Father highly exalted Jesus afterwards, ‘and given him a name which is above every name; That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of (those) things in heaven, and (those) things in earth, and (those) things under the earth. And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.’ (Phil.2:9-11) Oh what a mighty champion is our Lord and Saviour! 

And hear how John saw it in his vision in Revelation. As Jesus took up the Book of Life, ‘the four beasts  (living creatures) and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps and vials (bowls) full of odours (incense), which are the prayers of the saints. 

And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book (scroll), and to open the seals thereof; for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred (tribe), and tongue, and people, and nation. And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth. 

And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts (living creatures) and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands and thousands: Saying with a loud voice, worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.’ (Rev.5:8-12) 

And that’s exactly how it should be. So please my fellow believers, let’s praise and honour Jesus, and live for and LOVE Him down here on earth nuh, so that we will be able to praise and worship Him later on in heaven. That’s wisdom of everlasting proportions! Much LOVE!

…if you don’t honour Jesus on earth…you won’t praise Him in heaven…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 June 2017 1 John 2:15

1 John 2:15.   LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him.

Well a good morning to all you wonderful Scrip-Bit family members! We’ve been blessed with another day of life on planet earth! Glory to God! 

Oh,  I know that life often isn’t the greatest, but I’m sure most of us aren’t ready to give it up just yet. (smile) So let’s give our heavenly Father some thanks and praise and find out why He’s left us down here still, because He does have a purpose and a plan for each of our lives. 

Now listen to these two quotes which ought to be very useful to us all. The first one comes from a Daily Bread Devotional and says: ‘When we draw near to God our minds are refreshed and our strength is renewed.’ 

Gospel truth that my brethren! Because our heavenly Father is the only one who can really accomplish that feat in our souls. 

And the next quote is actually a prayer from one of the St.Therese of Lisieux Devotionals, and that calls us to plead with Almighty God to ‘Reignite your image in our hearts; rekindle your fire in our souls.’ 

Yes friends, in these trying times where true passion for Christ is sadly lacking in too many supposed believers, we desperately need a recharging of our hearts with the image of Christ and a rekindling of the fire that burned in our souls when we first believed. 

Unless there is a resurgence of that passion and LOVE for Christ, Christianity is doomed to be mediocre and second-class. And we definitely don’t want that now, do we? Obviously not! 

So please let’s get fired up again for Jesus nuh mih people! Let’s get His LOVE Revolution in full swing nuh, so that the hordes of people who don’t know Him will get to meet and know Him and come to LOVE Him just like we do. 

We can’t be selfish with Christ and try to keep Him all to ourselves. He was made to be shared with ALL THE WORLD, and it’s our appointed and anointed job to do that. So please let’s do it nuh! 

And why aren’t we doing our appointed job, of spreading the gospel, the good news of Jesus to all the world? Because as our Bit says, we are still too enamoured with the things of the world and not as much as we should be with the things of God! 

‘LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him.’ 

That’s the ultimate in truth my believing brethren! We can’t LOVE God and Beelzebub too! It’s either one or the other. And true wisdom dictates that LOVING God is the correct answer to the problem! 

And John continues his argument after our Bit. ‘For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.’ (1 John 2:16-17) 

Yeh friends, all the supposed wonderful things in this world will pass away at some time or the other, and the world itself will pass away eventually. So what will we have left if we embrace the world and its finite things eh? Absolutely nothing! For only the things of God will last forever! 

And here is an inkling into John’s thinking from the scholars. ‘2:16. World for John signifies the evil desire and sin so much a part of human existence.’ 

And believe you me friends, sin and evil desire is so rampant in our present world, that it’s mind-boggling. Just like we’ve reached the heights of technology and intelligence, likewise we’ve reached the heights of sin. 

Ah Lord eh! John and Bruh Paul and them talked about sin back in their day, but they would be absolutely floored by the heights that sin and evil desire have reached today. 

Listen to this wise advice from Bruh Paul to the Romans. ‘And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.’ (Rom.12:2) 

Oh my people, that advice is ever so necessary for us in these modern times because of the rampant nature of sin in the world! 

And the scholars explain: ’12:2. Be not conformed (lit. “stop conforming yourselves”): They are to resist being poured into the mold of the present thinking, value systems and conduct of this world. This term is used only here and in 1 Peter 1:14.’ 

We desperately need to take that same advice in these end times, my people! Why? Because things are not going to get any better unless we do. So let’s go home now with all of that good info inspiring us, flowing through our hearts and souls with a resurgence of passion for Christ, as we sincerely declare our Wednesday Wail. 

With feeling now: ‘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!’ 

That’s the only wise and sensible approach to this life friends! Much LOVE!

…one’s body and soul can only be refreshed and renewed…when one sincerely turns to Almighty God for help…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 June 2017 Ephesians 6:10.

Ephesians 6:10.    Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

Well fathers, our special day is over now, hope we all had an enjoyable day. Mine was fairly quiet, but very interesting. However, it’s now time for us to concentrate on, and get back to labouring so that we can keep a roof over our family’s head and bread on our table. It’s nice to be pampered and spoiled, but we certainly can’t forget about our bread and butter, our jobs. (smile) 

And I know that for plenty of us fathers, after all the celebrations yesterday, it’s going to be difficult to get up this morning to go and labour, but just think about it this way nuh: no work, no pay. (smile) But as always, we have the antidote for whatever ails you this Monday morning. It’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, and when we sing it sincerely and joyfully, it just refreshes and renews us, gets the adrenaline flowing in our bodies. 

So let’s belt it out now nuh, with plenty gusto and expectant faith. As one big earthly 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!’ 

Oh friends, that was a bit harsh and raucous, but the enthusiasm was great, and Jesus, our choirmaster understood our shortcomings. But now, with that same enthusiasm we just showed, aided by the adrenaline that’s coursing through our veins, let’s go out and face the enemy and battle them mano a mano in Jesus’ name. That’s what He’s expecting of us. 

And as Bruh Paul advises in in our Bit: ‘Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.’  

Yes my fellow believers, above everything else, if we want to go and fight the enemy, then we have to be strong in the Lord, because that’s where our strength and our help come from. As the psalmist declares: ‘My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved (slip): he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.’ (Ps.121:2-4) And that’s gospel truth my people! Our God will look after us at all times, under whatever circumstances and situations! 

Before we go further though, let’s check out some info from the scholars, re our Bit. ‘6:10. Finally may be rendered “from now on” or “henceforth.” The spiritual battle Christians are engaged in exists “from now on” until the Lord’s return: there is no quarter given, no cease fire, no temporary truce, no cessation of hostilities. “From now on” till the end there is all out war. The remainder of the verse may be paraphrased, “Let yourselves constantly be strengthened by the Lord, more precisely by His mighty power.” 

Ah mih people, how mighty is our God! The mightiest of them all!!! As we’ve said a couple times above, He made the heavens and the earth and all therein, so He must be truly powerful, and He does strengthen us to do His bidding. However, regardless of what strength we have, as warriors, we also need protective covering from the enemy’s slings and arrows, that’s why the verse after our Bit is so important. ‘Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (evil schemes) of the devil.’ (Eph.6:11) 

Yes friends, we need to put on our protective spiritual armour, this morning, and every morning, before we go out to fight against the enemy, so that we don’t get hurt. It’s one thing to be strong in the Lord, but it’s another to fight without protective covering.  

And the scholars offer us these explanations. ‘6:11. Put on (Greek ingressive aorist imperative) (smile) denotes a sense of urgency, demanding immediate action. To stand has military overtones. This verb was used in classical Greek meaning to resist the enemy and hold a critical positon in battle. The wiles of the devil (or, “the Devil’s strategy”). Satan carefully devises schemes and tactics against believers.’ 

So friends, it’s no joke war in which we’re involved, it’s serious business, serious stuff on which our salvation and eternal life depends. So please, let’s take it very seriously nuh, because our enemy, Lucifer, is taking it very seriously. He’s definitely out to trip us up and make us turn away from following Jesus. And that’s definitely not a wise thing to do. Therefore, let’s put on our spiritual armour, and with the strength of our great God flowing through our minds, bodies and spirits, let’s go out and battle Beelzebub – battle him to the finish! Much LOVE!

…soldiers of Christ arise…arise fully armoured and strengthened by Almighty God…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 June 2017 Psalm 37:1.

Psalm 37:1.   Fret not thyself because of evil doers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.

Ah friends, what a world we’re living in today eh, when you can wake up and hear that a tanker truck with toxic contents overturned on a major highway in southern Ontario yesterday afternoon in St. Catherines, close by to Niagara Falls. 

Also to hear that two children under 12 were doused with gasoline and set on fire by another under 12 year old boy in the Western Province of Saskatchewan. And then to see live, an apartment building in West London, England, its 24 floors being engulfed in huge flames, and the firefighters helpless to rescue many of them. 

Ah Lord eh! Sometimes it makes you long for the supposed good, old days, when we didn’t have toxic chemicals being ferried along our highways like ordinary stuff, and apartment buildings weren’t so tall, and young children weren’t as aggressive and violent. 

But we’ve opted for supposed progress and those things come with the territory. So now we just have to grin and bear them. 

But here’s the good news; we Christians don’t have to be worried over the stuff that can, and oftimes will happen, because we know that our God, our powerful heavenly Father is in control of ALL things and He will guide and protect us from harm. 

And here is an interesting quote to help us in our daily lives, courtesy of Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 – 1882), the famous American lecturer, essayist and poet. Ralph is reputed to have said: ‘Sorrow looks back, worry looks around, but faith looks up.’ 

Oh my fellow believers, what great advice for these trying times. We can’t afford to be looking back or around, but upwards, because that is where our help comes from. 

As the psalmist so rightfully declared: ‘My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth, He will not suffer thy foot to be moved (to slip): He that keepeth thee will not slumber,’ (Ps.121:2-3)  Gospel truth friends! 

And the sad fact is that too many Christians are too worried about the sad state of our world. Now we must be concerned about it, but the truth is that most of us can do nothing to prevent the mishaps and the violence, so why worry eh? 

We need to be more concerned about the things we have control over, and make sure that they go right, and simply leave the rest to God. Our worrying will in no way change some of the awful stuff that’s happening, so we don’t need to poison our own lives with fear and worry. 

And that brings us to the wonderful advice of our Bit; immortal words of Bruh David. ‘Fret not thyself because of evil doers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.’ 

Yes, my precious people of God, it doesn’t pay to be envious of the wicked, because their time will be short, for the Lord will mow them down like grass under a mower, and burn them in the fires of hell. 

And we have a very good example of worrying about the evildoers in the words of the psalmist Asaph. He writes in Psalm 73 – The mystery of prosperous wickedness. ‘Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean (pure) heart. 

But as for me, my feet were almost gone (my feet had almost stumbled); my steps had well nigh slipped. For I was envious at the foolish (boastful), when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.’ (Ps.73:1-3) 

Oh my fellow believers, I know that the wicked and evil are seemingly prospering in these end times, and we all want a piece of that pie, but are we going to sell our eternal souls to Beelzebub for a little earthly wealth and prosperity, none of which we can take into the eternal spiritual realm? 

That would be incredibly foolish, though many of us are doing it. And the simple solution is that if we sincerely follow Jesus’ admonitions, we can also become prosperous and wealthy in earthly terms, as well as store up treasures in heaven. 

Listen to these faithful words of our Lord and Saviour. ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt.6:33) 

Plain and straightforward friends: seek God first, and He will give you all you need to live an abundant life here on earth. For as Jesus later said: ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10) 

And having been reminded of all that my faithful followers of Christ, and having inwardly digested it, let’s go home joyfully declaring our Wednesday Wail. 

In strong voice as one body, let’s wail! ‘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!’ 

Now let’s go out and put it all into action, because that’s the only way to make it worthwhile in the sight of Jesus. Much LOVE!

…the eyes of ALL Christians…should be looking forward and upward…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 June 2017 John 10:11.

John 10:11.    I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. 

Oh my people, when I got up and looked outside a li’l while ago, the day seemed so beautiful that I simply had to go outside and say a sparkling ‘Good Morning’ to the Lord and give Him some thanks and praise for causing me to see such another wonderful day! 

Ah, the sun is shining brightly, playing off the green leaves as the flowers in the Duchess’ garden bloom and give off a beautiful sexy aroma, which causes the birds and the bees to helplessly gather around them, so that nature can further be procreated. (smile)

What a wise and wonderful God we serve my brethren! Please give Him some rightfully deserved thanks for allowing us to enjoy His nature walk today; so many others did not awake to that blessing. 

And since it’s Friday, you know the workingman is declaring at every spare moment: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes! Mama Yo! Freedom time soon come! Time to dance and sing…and do every li’l thing that I can’t do without the slave driver constantly watching over mih shoulder! Dust in yuh eye massa! Dust in yuh eye! Thank God for Fridays and the weekends oui!’ 

Ah friends, the sentiments are indeed touching and true, but the reaction is somewhat extreme. As Christians, we need to be more disciplined and controlled than that. Our Leader, Jesus Christ expects us to show the way in propriety and excellence, and taking it to the max will certainly not be considered such. 

Our Friday Chant better displays and reflects the behaviour needed. So let’s chant it nuh with sincerity and a strong sense of purpose. In unison 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 friends, that’s a much more appropriate way to approach and handle the weekend! We need to be always somewhat circumspect, so that we don’t give the enemy any leeway in our lives. For once he gets in, it’s like hell, like pulling teeth to get him out. But if our faith is strong, we need not be too concerned about the enemy, for he has already been defeated. 

Listen to out Bit: ‘I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.’  

And that is exactly what the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ did: He gave His sinless life for us, so that we don’t have to be afraid of the toothless devil Beelzebub. Glory to God my people! Jesus took all of our sins on His powerful shoulders and wiped our sin slate clean as a whistle, white as snow! How can we not be everlastingly thankful eh? 

Christianity is the only faith that offers such a simple but powerful release from sin: ONLY BELIEVE, it says! Yes friends, if we sincerely believe in the Good Shepherd, He will lighten our burdens and cause us to have salvation and eternal life with the Father. 

Hear him, as He extols His purpose after our Bit. ‘But he that is a hireling (hired man), and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is a hireling, and careth not for the sheep.’ (John 10:12-13) 

And that’s ever so true my people, as all of us have had cause and occasion to run away from situations and from stuff because we simply were hired personnel and didn’t feel that emotionally attached to whatever was happening. 

But our Lord and Saviour is certainly not like that. He sincerely and genuinely declares further: ‘I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and are known of mine.’ (John 10:14) 

Friends, do we know our shepherd? He knows us, but the most important question is do we truly know Him? If we don’t, then crapaud smoke we pipe! 

And the Good Shepherd further states: ‘As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold (flock), and one shepherd.’ (John 10:15-16) 

Oh friends, do you realize that the Good Shepherd was there referring to us, the Gentiles, the heathens, the non-Jews? Yes, He’s such a wonderful shepherd that He wants to include everybody in His kind and LOVING fold!  

No wonder he could continue: ‘Therefore doth my Father LOVE me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself; I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I receive of my Father.’ (John 10:16-17) 

Please notice friends, how important the Father was in the life of Jesus, His Son, and likewise He should also be very prominent, in fact first and foremost in our lives too, because EVERYTHING begins and ends with Him! 

Please notice too that Jesus shows His deity by having the awesome power to give up His earthly life and take it up again! Wow! Nobody took it from Him; He gave it up for us because the Father in His great LOVE, asked Him to, so that we poor sinful wretches could be saved. 

Please remember that my brethren and be suitably grateful and thankful and unified in the ONE flock of the Good Shepherd. That’s wisdom of everlasting proportions! Much LOVE!

…there are shepherds…and there are shepherds…and then there’s JESUS…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 May 2017 Psalm 133:1.

Psalm 133:1.   Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!

And then it was Saturday; beautiful spring time in the northern climes! Wow! We just can’t wait for summer to come, after experiencing those two days of summer weather this past week. 

Everybody was out in their shorts and shirtsleeves, walking, riding, the tops of the convertible cars down, with their hair blowing in the wind. I don’t think we’ll see as much of that today though, because it won’t be so warm. Today is shaping up to be a somewhat lazy, hazy day, at least hopefully for me, although I need to go and get some undecipherable noise on my chariot fixed. 

But however it turns out, since it’s Saturday, let’s look at some of our friend Anselm’s recent quotes, which are always aimed at inspiring us for a better tomorrow. And this week they were short and pithy – to the point – forceful, clever – like: ‘Try not to become a person of success, but rather try to become a person of value.’ 

And there’s great truth in that simple statement, for success comes in many different forms, and not all of them add value to us or our society. So you can be a successful person, in the eyes of the world, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you are valuable, especially in the eyes of Jesus. All the successful but evil people in this evil world aren’t valuable to Jesus or most of us, for in His realm, true value breeds success, not the other way around. 

And I like this quote. ‘Stop chasing the money and start chasing the passion.’ Oh friends, if more of us supposed Christians would only stop running down the money and the non-lasting wealth of the world, we’d not only be happier, but much more useful in service to Jesus. We run down the world’s riches, but we don’t have time to enjoy them. What we need more in these tough times is sincere passion; a desire to do good and not evil, to work diligently for Jesus rather than for Beelzebub! 

And this last quote is awesome. ‘If you are willing to do more than you are paid to do, eventually you will be paid to do more than you do.’ Words of biblical content my people! Jesus always inspired us to go the extra mile, to put our best foot forward, give more than we are asked, because in due time whatever we sow, we will reap in greater abundance. 

Unfortunately though, that idea of doing more than we’re paid to do has fallen on deaf ears. The treat today, is to do ever less than we’re paid to do, then smirk and think we’ve outsmarted our employer. Oh, we just might do that, but constantly robbing our employer of our paid time will certainly put our jobs in jeopardy. And remember, God is watching our every move, and if we Christians succumb to such fraudulent behaviour, we’ll definitely hear about it later from Him. 

So friends, it’s all to our betterment, if we live a useful, valuable and passionate Christian life. Not foolishly running down the things of the world, which don’t last anyway, and only cause us all kinds of worry and illness from the stress and strain of trying to acquire them. 

And all of that just leads to our wonderful Bit. ‘Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!’ And that’s the living truth my people! 

I don’t know, but something must be wrong with me yes, because I see others living in disunity and resentment and so much negative vibes around them and they seem to enjoy it, to flourish in it. Steups! I could never live so nuh. And as I’ve told my children many a time, if they ever live in such a sad state, I will come back and haunt them! (smile) That’s because there’s NO good reason for brethren, especially blood siblings, to live in continual disunity. 

Now let’s look at an instance in the Good Book pertaining to brethren not living in unity. And it has to do with Lot and Abraham, when their cattle herders were not getting along, because there was not enough land for all the cattle to feed equitably.

‘And Abraham said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren. Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left.’ (Gen.13:8-9) 

Now doesn’t that make sense friends? It surely does! Why fight amongst each other, when there is ALWAYS some way to mitigate the negativity. We just have to want to badly enough. 

Now hear these words from Bruh Paul to the Romans. ‘Be kindly affectioned (affectionate) one to another with brotherly LOVE; in honour preferring one another (giving preference to another)… Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not (do not set your mind on) high things, but condescend to men (associate with men) of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits (estimation)… If it be possible, as much as lieth in (depends on) you, live peaceably with all men.’ (Rom.12:10, 16, 18) Such words of wisdom my brethren!

And we’ll close with these famous words from the author of Hebrews. ‘Let brotherly LOVE continue. Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.’ (Heb.13:1-2)  

Yes friends, it’s all about living in unity…What else can it be about eh? Much LOVE!

…only in unity can our world ever hope to find peace…

 

 

 

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