Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 May 2016 Psalm 119:105

Psalm 119:105.    Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

Morning mih Scrip-Bit breddren! Another new day has dawned, and we are alive to see it…Glory to God! 

And though it’s somewhat cloudy, with rain in the forecast, there’s no need for believers to be overly concerned, since we ALWAYS have the bright, shining everlasting light of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ illuminating our souls, to lead and guide us safely through the darkness of this evil and ungodly world. 

And all God’s children declared a loud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord!’ 

And talking about shining, I heard this li’l reggae ditty last night titled ‘Lift up your soul,’ by Kaisha Lee. 

It contained a wonderful chorus that went something like this: ‘Shine bright, lift your heart up; lift your soul up; lift your smile up. Shine bright, lift your heart up; lift your soul up; lift yourself up. Why don’t you break free and lift your heart up; lift your soul up, lift your smile up. You know that you want to. You know that you got to… Shine bright…’ 

Yes friends, we’re supposed to shine bright because Jesus considers us the light of the world, and we do need to break free from the chains of this corrupt and material world and lift up our hearts, our souls and our basic selves to a standard that’s approved by our Leader Jesus Christ. 

And since today is Thursday, let’s prepare ourselves to receive the new mercies and blessing our great and gracious God is getting ready to send our way, by declaring our Thursday’s Blessings, because, remember, a blessing is not a blessing until it’s spoken over someone. 

As one 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!’ 

Ah mih people, how can Beelzebub ever hope to defeat us when we are so well surrounded and bolstered by all those blessings of Almighty God, the Creator and Controller of this universe eh? No way Jose! 

The only problem now is that have to believe it, see the blessings coming to pass through our eyes of faith. That brings us to our Bit, which rather appropriately has to do with light and guidance. ‘Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.’ 

What a wonderful and true bit of scripture my fellow believers. The Word of our God is indeed a lamp and a light to guide us safely through this world. The Bible is the Guide Book of Life and Living in this crazy and strife-filled world. It contains answers to every question and every situation that we can face in this earthly pilgrimage. But we won’t know those answers unless we read it my brethren. 

And strangely and sadly, it can be so difficult to get supposed believers to read the Word of God. I don’t know why. We claim to be believers, and that the Bible is important, but for some unholy reason we can’t seem to find the time to read it. 

Friends, let me let you into a little secret: you don’t find time to read God’s Word; you MAKE time to read it! Just like you make time for all the other activities in your life, you need to make time to find out how to live this life. 

And that’s a simple reason why so many supposed Christians are having untold problems in their lives; they refuse to read the Word to find the answers to their problems, and instead rely on all the frauds, the shamans and all the other ungodly counsellors and directives of the world. 

Wake up nuh precious people of God! You can’t know what God has to say unless you communicate with Him through His Word and prayer! 

And hear how Cousin Sol puts it in his warning against adultery. ‘For commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life: To keep thee from the evil woman, from the flattery of the tongue of a strange woman (seductress).’ (Prov.6:23-24) 

Truer words were never spoken my fellow believers! Until we have a lamp filled with oil and a clean glass covering so that we can clearly see the way, we will always falter in the consuming darkness of this evil world. 

Lucifer and all his evil minions read and study and meditate on their tomes of evil, so that they can become even more evil than they already are. So why can’t we do the same with our directives for righteousness eh? 

And we’ll end with Bruh David’s take on the subject from Psalm 19 –The creation and covenants of God. ‘The law of the Lord is perfect, converting (restoring) the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. 

The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring for ever: the judgements of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, yes than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the (drippings of) the honeycomb. Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in the keeping of them there is great reward.’ (Ps.19:7-12) 

Oh my people, I can’t put it any better than that! And Bruh David knew exactly what he was talking about because he lived it. Why are we so presumptuous to think that we know better eh? 

Anyway, nuff said for today! I implore us to ponder it all and to make the wise and sensible decision to get seriously involved in God’s Word, for that is the only way to successful living. Much LOVE!

…only in the Book of Life…can one find…the secret to the good life…

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 April 2016 Psalm 46:1

Psalm 46:1.   God is our refuge and strength, a very present help (an abundantly available help) in trouble.

Well friends, it’s Saturday and I’m just biding my time to go up Calder Hall and get some of the revitalizing and refreshing and energizing soup of Brother Kirby. Oh mih people, I can see those three big iron (Dutch) pots sitting on the fire under the tent, just filled with delicious tasting soup. 

One containing pigeon peas, or as my Jamaican family calls it, gungo peas; then the other is bubbling with dasheen bush, and the last with a thick cow foot mixture, just guaranteed to set your palate right. Oh I know some of you will skin up your face at that last one, but truthfully, I believe that the cow foot is the most nourishing of the three kinds of soup. 

So I’m dreaming, so big deal! That’s why the Lord gave us imaginations, and through the eyes of faith I’m seeing myself slurping back some of that nourishing and tasty Tobago soup, not too far in the distant future. Mama Yo! Tobago soup!

Yeh friends, the ole fella misses Tobago; the sunshine, the saltwater, the friends, the family, early morning devotions on the patio as the sun rises and the birds chorus their songs of LOVE, the church going and Bible Study, watching the ferries go back and forth from Scarborough to Port of Spain, not to mention the peaceful calm of the sea just breaking over the reef and washing up on to the rocky shore.  

And I miss it even more, when up here, they are calling for rain and snow today and tomorrow. But what to do eh? Not much but grin and bear it, because this is where the Lord has me currently planted and that means He has work for me to do here. But one day, one day, provided the Lord is in favour, I know it will surely happen.  

Now here is an interesting quote from our friend Anselm, as always inspiring us to aspire to a better tomorrow. This quote says: ‘Somebody came into my office crying. I said, “Look, don’t cry to give up! Cry to keep going!!” Don’t cry to quit! You already in pain, You already hurt! Get a reward from it!’ 

And you know that does make a whole lot of sense my brethren. As Christians we keep talking about the Lord testing us, teaching us useful lessons, putting us on His potter’s wheel and reshaping us, then putting us in the kiln to bake for a while to toughen us up.  

Now that is all painful, but you know what? We need to always learn from our pain. And coincidentally, it’s just in the last few days I heard two preachers say the same thing. We must not waste our pain. What’s the point of bearing the pain if we don’t learn something from it, or as Anselm says: ‘Get a reward from it.’ 

Yes friends, a lot of us are hurting in some form and fashion, and none of us like to be hurting, but it’s an essential part of human life, especially the Christian faith, where we grow stronger and more Christ-like through painful situations. So since we cannot get around the hurt and pain of this mortal life, we might as well embrace it and use it for some useful purpose. 

Just don’t ask me what and how? (smile) I have some here that I don’t understand the whys nor the wherefores, but when I figure it, out I’ll let you know. 

Ah mih people, life just happens to us all, and we can only benefit by using it in a positive manner, and laughing some at our problems, otherwise we’ll go crazy in no time at all. And as Christians we have it better than anybody else, because as our Bit so truthfully and powerfully declares: ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present help (an abundantly available help) in trouble.’ 

And that is the gospel, the indisputable and irrevocable truth my brethren! Our God is our hiding place and our tower of power! 

Consequently, the sons of Korah continue the psalm thus: ‘Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst (the heart) of the sea: Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof.  Selah.’ (Ps.46:2-3)  

Yes my fellow believers, that’s how strong we ought to be, even with earthquakes and tidal waves surrounding us. Unfortunately, that’s not always possible or practical, but it is the pinnacle for which we ought to aim, since the Creator and Controller of the world is our heavenly Father, our refuge and our strength in time of trouble, and furthermore has promised never to leave or forsake us. What better place to put our trust and faith eh? 

Now listen to Bruh David say it in his own inimitable style. ‘My soul, (silently) wait thou only upon God: for expectation (hope) is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defense; I shall not be moved (shaken). In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us.  Selah.’ (Ps.62: 5-8)  

Ah friends, there’s not much more that I can add to that. And we all know the painful but faithful life Bruh David lived. Some of his problems were of his own making, but others, like Saul hunting him down like a wild animal, was God’s way of testing him. It took him something like twenty years after he was anointed, to actually become king. 

Likewise, some of our troubles are self inflicted, while others come to try our mettle of faith. And hopefully, like Bruh David, we will have the wherewithal to stand up strong and pass most of the tests, as the Lord desires of us. 

Now let’s close with these awe inspiring words of Moses, as he exhorts the Israelites to obedience. ‘For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh (a God so near) unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for?’ (Deut.4:7) 

And the truthful answer to that my brethren is a resounding ‘NO OTHER!’ 

So with all of that godly encouragement and inspiration, please let’s go out today, and every day henceforth, to LOVE and serve our Lord, and do His will with humble pleasure, as Jesus did in His earthly sojourn. It won’t be easy, but with God’s always available help, it’s doable. Much LOVE!

…with the Creator as our refuge and strength…Christians don’t need any other protectors or protection…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 March 2016 Philippians 1:29‏‏‏

Philippians 1:29.   For unto you it is given in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.

Aye mih breddren, it’s a white winter’s morn in my neck of the woods this Holy Thursday of 2016. Yes, it’s beautiful to the eyes, but ever so dangerous to the body. A late winter, early spring storm dumped some of the white stuff on us; thankfully not as much as the East Coast and parts to the north of us. 

The problem though is it’s not straight snow but more a combination with freezing rain, which means there’s a high ice content making things very slippery and dangerous. So those of you who have to go out there, please make sure you are very careful because it doesn’t take much under those conditions for accidents to happen. 

Thankfully I don’t have to go out there today. And besides, the last two days have been rather busy, and what with the unusually late nights too, the ole fella needs a bit of a rest. He’s not as young as he was or as mobile and agile as he thinks he is. (smile) 

And we’re going to begin today with a serious and sincere prayer from Gramps Schuller’s (Robert H. Schuller) Hours of Power Devotional. We’re going to give ourselves to God, either for the first time, or if we’ve done so before, rededicate our lives to Him. 

So please pray with me: ‘Almighty God, it is a beautiful way to live to know that you are there with a plan for my life, and through prayer I can draw my life into harmony with your plan. I know, God, that your plan for my life calls for me to follow Christ. 

Jesus Christ, I give my life to you. I’ve never done it before. That has been my problem. That has been my hang up. O God, I give my life to you now. Take my life Jesus Christ, and make it yours. Forgive my sins. Fill me with your LOVE. You are doing it now and I thank you. Amen.’  

Yeh friends, what better time to dedicate or rededicate our lives to Christ than just before He sacrifices His life for us tomorrow on Good Friday! 

We all know it wasn’t an easy time for Him, how He went into the Garden of Gethsemane in the evening and with an anguished spirit, pleaded with the Father, that if it were at all possible, He would be spared the difficult and dehumanizing ordeal. (Matt.26:36-46) 

But it was not, and Jesus knew that, but it just shows that in His humanity He was as vulnerable and anxious as any man would be. 

However, finally accepting that His ordeal could not be put aside, He eventually said: ‘O my Father, if this cup may not pass from me except (unless) I drink it, thy will be done.’ (Matt.26:42) 

Ah mih people, that is how we have to react sometimes too. Even though we know that the going will be pretty rough and painful, if it’s the Lord’s will, we just have to grin and bear it. Remember too, that He will not give us more than we can bear, and will always help us through whatever painful and sorrowful situations we go through. 

Those are the thoughts of faith we must use to get us through the rough times. For as our Bit declares: ‘For unto you it is given in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.’ 

Oh my fellow believers, unfortunately, living for Jesus is a two way street. It’s not easy, but the rewards do outweigh the pain and heartache. And as we promised yesterday, here is the rather appropriate passage from 2 Corinthians. 

‘For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.’ (2 Cor.4:17-18) 

Yeh friends, we can’t afford to merely look at and concentrate on the things that are happening to us in this life, because they are temporary, only for a short while, but through our eyes of faith must keep focused on the things of heaven which we cannot see, but which are so much more valuable and worthwhile than the destructible things of the world. 

My brethren, it’s a serious decision we have to make to follow Christ. We cannot have a wishy-washy, half-baked, fence-sitting attitude, if we really want to be a true Christian. It’s true that Christ died that we may have an abundant life, but he also said that it would be filled with persecution, just because we believed on Him. 

However, He also said that we should not be afraid, because he had already conquered the world, and there was nothing the world could do to us. And we’ll finish with another appropriate scripture passage for this Holy Thursday. 

This one from Hebrews: ‘Looking unto Jesus the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith: who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.’ (Heb.12:2) 

And what was that joy, you ask? ‘Wherefore God hath highly exalted him, 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) 

Yes precious people, that’s how the Father rewarded Jesus for sacrificing His sinless life for us. Will He not amply reward us too if we are obedient to His will? Of  course! 

So please let’s go into Good Friday with a sense of suffering for and with Christ, so that when He is exalted, we also will be exalted with Him. There’s no better wisdom than that! Much LOVE!

…any ‘sufferation’ that comes from doing God’s will…will be amply rewarded….in God’s way…and in God’s time…that’s a proven fact… 

P.S. It’s late and long, but oh so good! (smile) Much LOVE!

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 March 2016 Philippians 1:29‏‏

Philippians 1:29.   For unto you it is given in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.

Oh friends, the ole fella had a rather rough day yesterday, as I guess many of you also had. But yuh know what? Yesterday is dead and gone, and tomorrow never comes, so the only thing we have to deal with is today! 

And there’s nothing better than today when you’re a believer in Jesus Christ, because every morning that you awake your life is flooded with new mercies and blessings. No other faith promises, much less guarantees that! 

And all believers shouted ‘Glory to God in His high heaven, who looks after His wayward children with such care, compassion and LOVING-kindness! Bless His holy name!’ 

Yes my brethren, there’s none that can compare to Jehovah God! And in keeping with all that, let’s wail our Wednesday Wail nuh with enthusiasm and sincerity as befits the followers of Christ. 

‘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!’ 

Oh isn’t it just wonderful to be associated with Jesus my people! It surely is! With His breath of life flowing through our frail bodies we can do anything, even move mountains! All it requires is that we focus on Him and just keep looking straight ahead to the glorious life He has planned for those who believe and work on His behalf. 

And all God’s people loudly declared another joyful and grateful ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And I must apologize for the rather late Bit, but as usual, I went to bed pretty late this morning, consequently got up late, then had to go out the street to run a necessary errand. But I’m here now, all fired up with the Holy Spirit, ready to bend your ears with the Word! (smile) 

And what better way to begin than with our Bit. ‘For unto you it is given in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.’ 

Ah friends, we cannot expect to have the good without the bad, as Job told his wife (Job 2:10) for that’s just life. So if we believe in Christ and receive all the benefits that flow from such belief, then we also have to accept whatever disadvantages spring from it. 

Now listen to Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. 

The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ: if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. 

For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creature (creation) waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.’ (Rom.8:14-19) 

Oh my brethren what a blessed situation, if we only bear the problems that we do encounter with faith and steadfastness! Now let’s see what the scholars have to say about some of that. 

‘8:15. The Spirit of adoption: The Holy Spirit places the believer as a son in God’s family. Abba (Aramaic for “father”): This is the intimate name used only by members of the family. Its use here denotes the intimacy of the believer’s relation to God.’ 

How wonderful is that eh friends, to be on such an intimate basis with Almighty God, who so LOVINGLY adopted us when we became believers in His Son Jesus Christ! 

‘8:17. Joint-heirs with Christ: All believers share all the inheritance together. They also have the promise of glorification if their lives are lived devotedly and sacrificially unto the Lord.’ 

Mama mia! Our God is so wonderful that He adopts us when we become believers, and makes us heirs of the kingdom along with Jesus! Glory be! That happens in no other faith but Christianity, so why should I embrace any other eh! 

‘8:18. The sufferings of this present time: See 2 Corinthians 4:17-18. [You can look that up yourself, or we’ll deal with it tomorrow]. The glory which shall be revealed: The blessed hope of the Christian looks ahead with anticipation to this great moment. See also 1 Thess.4-15; Titus 2:13.’ 

Yeh friends, the suffering of this age cannot be compared with the glory to come, that’s why we have to keep our focus on the future, looking ahead to our glorious time with Christ! 

‘8:19. The creature, or creation, eagerly looks forward to the revelation of the sons of God in the Millennium (Christ’s thousand year earthly reign) because that is the time when the curse will be lifted and creation will be restored to Edenic conditions.’ 

Mama yo! What a time that will be my fellow believers, when we’ve gone back to living in conditions that reflect the Garden of Eden! I can’t wait for it. (smile) But we have to learn to handle the suffering down here first friends. 

So as everything tells us, let’s not focus on the rough times we endure down here right now, but instead, have our mind’s eye set on the time of glorious fellowship with Christ, when He comes back to reign here on earth and when all wrongs will be made right. That’s the only way to handle our troubles right now. Much LOVE!

…through our eyes of faith…let’s see the good times afar off…and let them help us to endure today’s suffering… 

P.S. Sorry, but I had another couple of distractions which made the Bit even later than it should have been. But as they say, better late than never. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 April 2015 Matthew 27:35

Matthew 27:35. And they crucified him, and parted (divided) his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted (divided) my garments among them, and upon my vesture (clothing) did they cast lots.

Oh Friends, it’s Friday! And one we call Good Friday to boot. How can that be though, when such a dastardly deed, such a great injustice, a crucifixion, was perpetrated on a holy and sinless man two thousand years ago? How can it be that we call such a day good eh, especially when it was no ordinary crucifixion, but a horrific and cruel one, filled with all sorts of unimaginable brutality and inhumanity?
 
That’s the epitome of our saying that man’s inhumanity to man makes countless thousands suffer and mourn!  But I guess we call it good because it was the beginning, the initializing of some thing good. Without that sacrifice on Good Friday, there would have been no resurrection on Easter Sunday, no victory over hell, death and the grave.
 
And it’s also good in the sense that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ gave His life so that we could be free from the bondage of sin once and for all. We have to look at it that way Friends, otherwise it was just a brutal injustice.
 
And believe you me, Jesus paid a heavy, heavy price for our disgusting sins, for as we said above, it was no ordinary crucifixion, but a most cruel and heartless one, fuelled by fear and greed and the lust for power, the same things that are still controlling our world today.
 
Oh my people, please take a moment and consider the inhumanity that Jesus suffered before He even reached Calvary; the scourging, the spitting, the ridicule, the mocking, the slapping, the crown of thorns, the tearing of His flesh by the cruel whips with all sorts of sharp things attached meant exactly for that purpose.
 
In this modern day and age, although we’re still cruel, I don’t think we can truly capture the thoroughly disfigured and tattered picture of Jesus when He came out of Pilate’s place, then was given His cross to carry, though He could barely walk and His wounds were by then terminal. It was only a matter of time.
 
It’s a good thing that somebody had the bright idea to get Simon the Cyrene to help Him bear the cross, otherwise I doubt He would have made it to Golgotha that evil place of the skull, which we Christians now term Calvary, a much nicer name. Then being made to lie outstretched on two planks of wood and nailed to them with huge metal nails, in such a way that death would be painful and prolonged. Steups!
 
Can you imagine that gruesome scene Friends, of Jesus being put to lie down on the cross and nailed to it, then have it raised upright and what little lifeblood He had left, being set to drain slowly and painfully out of Him? And to make matters worse, they crucified Him between two common criminals. Chuh!
 
Ah mih people, can you look through your eyes of faith and see Jesus, all torn and tattered, just languishing up there on that cross in the hot noonday sun? Believe me Friends, it was definitely no little price that Jesus paid for the banishment of our sins nuh! That’s what you call real ‘sufferation.’ The Father really put it to Him.
 
In my humble opinion it did not have to be so cruel, but I guess it just goes to show how disgusting and diabolical sin is and was, and that the only way to truly get rid of it was by a serious sacrificial death of a sinless person. And unfortunately Jesus was the ONLY ONE who fit that description.
 
It also shows how serious the Father is and was about His dislike for sin, if He could allow such terrible atrocities to be performed on His only Son. If you think it hurts us, just imagine the heartache He must have felt nuh, seeing His Son go through so much agony, and knowing that He could stop it with a simple word, but also knowing that if He did, sin would then forever run rampant throughout His universe, with no end in sight, and the evil Lucifer would have won the war.
 
Being a holy and just God, He just could not allow that, so like we say, He just had to grin and bear it. And yet we still doubt His wonderful and unconditional LOVE for us!
 
What hurts too Friends, is that after that most expensive price Jesus paid for our forgiveness, for our reconciliation and atonement, for our salvation and eternal life, so many of us simply ignore Him, or don’t take him as seriously as we should.
 
That’s not only unfortunate my brethren, but rather foolish, for if we don’t embrace Jesus and all that He stands for then we’ll still end up in the pool of fire come the judgement day with the wicked Beelzebub and all his other minions, and His sacrifice would have been worthless.
 
Oh Friends, the Father sent His son to pay the price for our abominable sins because He did not want to lose even one of His most wonderful creations, mankind, to Lucifer. So why aren’t we being wise and truly accepting Jesus as our Lord and Saviour eh? That’s the multi-million dollar question?
 
Instead, we’re sadly moving away from Him in droves, embracing the worthless and sinful stuff of the world, foisted on us by the prince of darkness and his evil lackeys. That’s only going to bring us more sin and suffering, and it’s oh so foolish, when Jesus has already paid the price for us to be free from the bondage and torment of sin.
 
But yuh know what my brethren, Jesus was such a mighty and majestic man, that throughout it all He didn’t complain. He knew that that was the reason for which He was made man, and though He pleaded some with the Father to change the plans, deep down He knew that it was not going to happen, so again, like we all have to do at times, He just grinned and bore it.
 
He withstood the mockery and jeers and otherwise that were hurled at him while He hung there limp and helpless on the cross. The only sad words that reached His lips on the cross were as the Good Book says: ‘And about the ninth hour (noon) Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? That is to say, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?’ (Matt.27:46)
 
Yes Friends, in that moment, as the scholars explain; ‘Here we have the high cost to Christ of His atonement for our sins, who was accursed of God as our sin-bearer, (cf.2 Cor.5:21; Gal.3:13) and suffered the agony of spiritual death for us.’ 
 
Ah mih breddren, as our Bit so sadly says too: ‘And they crucified him, and parted (divided) his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted (divided) my garments among them, and upon my vesture (clothing) did they cast lots.’ That prophecy comes from Psalm 22:18, words of Bruh David.
 
But you know what Friends, Jesus is so beautiful, that even on the cross He still reached out to us. He pleaded with the Lord; ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.’ (Luke 23:34) Then to one of the criminals who were crucified with Him and who embraced His sanctity as they hung there together, He sincerely promised: ‘Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise.’ (Luke 23:43)
 
And to show how much He cared for His mother, the Good Book tells us: ‘When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by whom he LOVED (John), he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.’ (John 19:26-27)
 
What’s left to be said eh, my people? Only this: ‘And when Jesus had cried with aloud voice, he said, ‘Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost (breathed his last).’ (Luke 23:46)
 
Oh Friends, on this solemn Friday which we call good, and on which we didn’t even shout for joy, ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!’ since most people are already off work, for it’s a public holiday in most places, let’s Chant our Friday Chant nonetheless as we spend the day in worship and ponder what the day means to us as a congregation, as well as individuals.
 
Let’s chant: ‘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.’
 
Oh my people, it’s long and somewhat involved. (smile) But that’s what I was guided to write. I just hope it brings home to us the real hefty price that Jesus paid for our sins to be forgiven, and brings us ever closer to Him. Much LOVE!
 
…to all serious believers…today…let’s take up our crosses and follow Jesus…for that’s what he desires of us…

 

 

 

 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 February 2015 Matthew 15:11

Matthew 15:11. Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.

Ah Friends, it’s Wednesday – Ash Wednesday – and all the bacchanal done! Yes Carnival is over for another year, and we now move into the season of Lent; forty days of prayer, fasting, cleansing, getting and keeping in close touch with God.

A time when we remember and seriously consider Jesus being led by the Holy Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by Lucifer, where He fasted for forty days, to build up His faith, His resistance to Lucifer and acknowledge in deed through prayer, His heavenly Father’s caring and provision for Him.

And He successfully accomplished His mission there, chasing the devil by quoting the Word. (Matt.4:4, 7, 10) And when Lucifer saw that he couldn’t get anywhere with Jesus, he left Him alone. As the Good Book describes it: ‘Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered to him.’ (Matt.4:11)

Yes Friends, it’s the same way that the Lord will send His angels to minister to us when we go through strong temptation but hold up strong. And plenty of the masqueraders who were yesterday worshipping at the altar of the idol Bacchus, with his over the top, extremely sinful behaviour, have today gone, or will go to church to receive ashes and repent for their numerous sins of yesterday.

And I guess that’s how it ought to be. Unfortunately I didn’t get to church this morning, as it was scheduled for six o’clock. I was up too early, then went back to bed, and didn’t get up until it was too late. Deep down though, I guess I never really wanted to go and conveniently laid there till it was too late.

But our wonderful God understood my human frailty and has forgiven me. That’s the beauty of our God; though He might not like or approve of our behaviour, He understands, and He forgives… But please remember too, that He also disciplines, so we can’t get away with the same nonsense all the time.

Now this Ash Wednesday morning began as a cool, cloudy, blustery day, with leaves and trees just blowing around. Finally a shower of rain came down. One that actually provided enough water to wet the boards of the deck and make the ground a bit soft. And since then it’s been drizzling off and on. I even got caught in one of the drizzles when I went for my walk along the shoreline of the property. The sun is still fighting to break through the clouds at minutes to nine.

Anyway, yesterday in the afternoon, I went down to the big city of Scarborough (smile) to see some mas. I braved the hot sun and the walk – about a quarter mile from the parking lot to the stands where I’d been the night before, with the duchess boasting when I asked if she could handle the walk, that it was me, not her who had problems walking.

But my people, as always, the Lord didn’t disappoint me. He energized and enabled me to walk without any problems, and later on, when I was too tired to move, He picked me up like a little child and carried me on His strong, caring shoulders. Much thanks and all glory be to our wonderful God, who never gives us or puts us through more than we can handle!

The mas was just starting when we got there shortly after two, and it was decent enough by Tobago standards. There were some relatively intricate and beautiful costumes. But if I ever hear Machel Montano’s song ‘Doing it like a Boss’ again, I’m going to strangle the D.J. or mash up the radio! Brother, that was about the only song they played when the bands paraded in front of the judges, right beside me.

Steups! And it had to be so loud too. At one stage I saw about three youngsters sitting next to me block their ears from the noise. And that foolishness only causes hearing problems for all and sundry. And wonder of wonders, the duchess’ I-phone refused to take pictures. And I don’t know what devil got into me, but I got out my old, cheap phone and began taking pictures.

Hn! I had to laugh, because I’ve never taken more than a couple pictures with it, but I learned how to do it as I went along. And we were lucky too, for after about half an hour in the blazing sun in the stands, the wife went across the street to an establishment to get a drink, but it was closed. However they had a nice wide overhang protecting their verandah, with seats, so we sat there for the rest of the time.

We left about six thirty, somewhat disappointed that I hadn’t seen the much talked about ‘mud mas.’ We bought some Chinese food and ice cream on the walk back to the car, not even bothering to stop at the Pan on D Road that was again taking place at the junction, because it still sounded tired and uninspiring. We got home without incident, ate, watched a little t.v. then went to bed. And that was the sum total of my Carnival Tuesday activities! (smile)

Today though my people, is a day for introspection. We’ve been physically looking outside all through the Carnival season, but now that Lent is here, it’s time to turn our eyes of faith inside and see what’s really in there, and try to clean it up. For remember what Jesus said in our Bit: ‘Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.’

Words of absolute truth my brethren! That means we have to look very closely at what ungodly stuff is simmering within us, and with God’s help get rid of it. And that can only be done through prayer, and sometimes in conjunction with fasting. As Jesus told His disciples when they couldn’t cast out a demon from a young boy. ‘This kind can come forth by nothing but by prayer and fasting.’ (Mark 9:29)

Yes Friends, some things can only be cleansed from our souls by diligent prayer and consistent fasting, but the important thing is to pray for guidance and deliverance! And if necessary, for this Lenten season, give up certain things that are weighing you down and causing you to stray from God, or not get close to Him.

We need to say like Bruh David in Psalm 109 – A prayer for punishment of the wicked. ‘For (in return) for my LOVE they are my adversaries: but I give myself unto prayer.’ (Ps.109:4)

Oh Friends, without prayer, sincere prayer, we’re lost, for it’s our best method of communication with Almighty God, the Creator, and Controller of ALL things and ALL lives! And although we don’t have the spiritual strength of Jesus, we do have enough to resist most temptations, especially when co-joined with His strength. goes

So this Lenten season, let’s make a very special effort to clean up our act, through prayer, fasting, giving up stuff, and whatever else it takes to cleanse our souls and brings us closer to God. That’s true wisdom! Much LOVE!

…Lent…a time for serious cleansing of our heart, minds, bodies and souls…and drawing closer to God…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 July 2014 Mark 5:36b

Mark 5:36b.      Be not afraid, only believe.
 

Oh Friends, it’s Sunday; the Lord’s Day, so let’s be up and rejoicing nuh, giving thanks that we’ve been blessed to see it! And hopefully too, we are all getting ready to go out and worship Him in the sanctuary with other believers, singing songs of praise and thanksgiving for all His LOVING- kindness to us, because it is mete and right to do so.
 
And glorifying God not only warms the cockles of His heart, but it also invigorates us, strengthens our faith, as we exhort and encourage each other to keep on keeping on despite the trials and tribulations in our individual circumstances.
 
And I’m going to keep the preamble short because I want to get in a lot of scripture, so that I can finish the messages on this Bit today. But there’s no guarantee on that, since who knows where the Holy Spirit will lead me. (smile)
 
But as Jesus says: ‘Be not afraid, only believe.’
 
Anyway, we left off yesterday where Martha, Lazarus’ sister declared her unswerving belief that Jesus was the Christ, the Son of God. (John 11:27) Now later on, when they had taken Jesus to Lazarus’ tomb, and He told them to roll away the stone from the tomb’s entrance, Martha was aghast and ’saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days.
 
Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that if thou wouldst believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God? Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. And I know that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.’ (John 11:39-42)
 
Yes my brethren, Jesus was doing all that stuff so that the people could believe. Why? Because mankind is so unstable, doubting and fearful that we tend to believe more readily when we actually see physical evidence of what is being proposed to us. Unlike our physical sight, our eyes of faith don’t come automatically, they have to be developed through experience and understanding.
 
And we see that Jesus’ strategy worked, because after He called forth Lazarus from the opened tomb, and he came out alive and kicking, the Good Book declares: ‘Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on him.’ (John 11:45)
 
Glory Hallelujah, my people! But as we just said, man’s fear is usually his downfall. For as the Good Book continues: ‘But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done.
 
Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, What do we (shall we do)? For this man doeth many miracles. If we let him thus alone (alone like this), all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.’ (John 11:46-48)
 
Ah Friends, the Jewish rulers were sore afraid that if Jesus was left to His own devices, the people would believe that He was indeed the Messiah, and the Romans would come in to halt the LOVE Revolution that He’d set in motion, and they would lose their positions of power and influence.
 
Now here is some interesting info from the scholars. ’11:45-48. The Pharisees had tried to kill Jesus on several occasions, always by the orthodox Jewish method of stoning. The Sadducees were willing to accomplish it through their political union with the Roman power. Thus prophecy was fulfilled (Ps.22:1-18).
 
Of course the Sadducees were particularly agitated by Lazarus’ resurrection, since they did not believe in the resurrection. However, their main concern with Jesus was that He might cause a messianic uprising (v.48). Unlike the Pharisees, their interests were political, not theological: blasphemy or healing on the Sabbath did not particularly disturb them.’
 
So both power-broking groups of Jews had a lot to lose if Jesus was allowed to freely continue His ministry. Ah Friends, belief is truly the nemesis of fear yes; for fear cringes in the presence of belief, as we can see from the behaviour of the ruling Jewish classes.
 
And we’ll close with one more passage of scripture from Jesus, a rather significant passage, this when He was teaching a group of Greeks who had come up to Jerusalem to celebrate the feast.
 
At one stage He told them about the Son of man being lifted up: ‘This he said, signifying what death he should die. The people answered him, We have heard out of the law that Christ abideth for ever: and how sayest thou, The Son of man must be lifted up? Who is this Son of man?
 
Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knowest not whither he goeth. While ye have the light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children (sons) of light. These things spake Jesus, and departed, and did hide himself from them.’ (John 12:33-36)
 
I don’t give Jesus wrong at all for getting away from them nuh, because listen to the next verse. ‘But though he had done so many miracles (signs) before them, yet they believed not on him. (John 12:37)
 
Oh Friends, what is wrong with us eh, why are we so hardhearted and refuse to believe despite all that Jesus has done and is still doing for us?
 
Anyway, my brethren, let us not be like those people of old nuh, we have many more facts and figures than they had, so please let us believe. For it is the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!
 
…just like light covers and consumes darkness…so too does belief strangle and kill fear…it’s therefore wise to walk in light and belief…

 

 

 

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