Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 November 2017 Proverbs 24:1.

Proverbs 24:1.   Be not thou envious against (of) evil men, neither desire to be with them.

And then it was Friday…the day we all look forward to! And everybody shouted a loud ‘Yeah, Friday at last!’ 

I don’t know if our society is arranged the best that it can be nuh friends, and there doesn’t seem to be any movement afoot to change it. So we go, go, go for 5 days from morning till night, then are suddenly catapulted into 2 days of supposed freedom, where we try to catch up with our own lives, then get right back into action again on Monday morning. 

No wonder it’s tiring and causes the workingman to loudly declare at the end of each week: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes mih brethren! One more day of work and I’d drop down dead! The slave master so unfair; killing me with work, but the paycheck as small as ever. The backbreaking work we do for the man…and all he does is heap more abuse on us. Steupssss! 

That’s why when Friday come, we just have to go out and party till we senseless! Is the only thing that makes us forget the toil and abuse we have to go back to on Monday! All I can say is Thank God for Fridays and the weekends yes! Otherwise crapaud surely smoke we pipe!’ 

Ah mih people, the economic situation is surely deteriorating in a world that’s chock full of abundance. It’s just not properly, fairly divided. The rich are getting greedier and richer, while more people are being marginalized and falling into the poor category. That’s why sometimes you can’t get annoyed with the workingman’s behaviour. Christians on the other hand, are expected to bite the bullet to a certain extent and don’t allow our baser nature to flourish. (smile) 

That’s why our Friday Chant is so different from the workingman’s anthem. So let’s chant up a storm nuh, and release our frustrations, the way that Jesus would like and expect us to do. Altogether 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 fellow believers, it’s not an easy world we live in, nor an easy faith we follow, but be assured that whatever our God desires of us, He will give us the will and the wherewithal to accomplish it. That’s why we can adhere to the boundaries set out in our faith, the not going overboard, or doing stuff in excess, to the extremes. 

And what makes it even more difficult is that all around us we encounter the worldly lures, invitations and eye-pleasing temptations that are such a big part of our evil world. They are supposedly anathema to godly people, but yet we are expected to live amongst them and not be too affected by them. 

No, it’s definitely not easy, when almost every minute of every day in this increasingly evil society, we are badgered by some ungodly temptation, and to top it all, then face the increasing prosperity of those who fall for, or bow to the world order. 

Our faith quite plainly warns us: ‘Be not thou envious against (of) evil men, neither desire to be with them.’ And if we want to live a godly life and eventually see the face of God in heaven throughout eternity, then we have to live up to the warning. Because, here is what happens to those who follow the wicked world order. 

Bruh David explains it to us in Psalm 37 – The true state of the wicked. ‘Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb.’ (Ps.37:1-2) 

Yes friends, that’s what is going to happen to those who don’t follow Jehovah God. And all the worldly prosperity and power won’t be able to help you when that time comes. So if you want to be cut down like the grass, then go right ahead and do what the world considers acceptable. 

However, if you are wise and acknowledge the Lord’s authority, you will do like Bruh David recommends. ‘Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed (feed on His faithfulness). Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. 

Commit they way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgement (justice) as the noonday. Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices (schemes) to pass. 

Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise (way) to do evil (for it only causes harm). For evildoers shall be cut off (destroyed): but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth.’ (Ps.37:1-9) 

Yeh mih breddren, that’s Christianity course 101! (smile) And I guess the Lord thought we needed a refresher course this morning, that’s why He led me to that particular scripture. 

Oh my fellow believers in Christ, we all know it’s not easy to live IN the world and not be a part OF it, but if we sincerely seek the Lord, He will definitely give us the tools to do just that. Remember He is faithful that promised. So let’s rise up and be strong nuh, fight the good fight and run the good race in Jesus name. Amen! Much LOVE!

…Jesus gave His life for us…the least we can do…is live our lives for Him…

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 November 2017 Psalm 46:1.

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

‘Blow the trumpet, sound the horn… And welcome another ‘loverly’ Monday morn!’ 

Now that just raises a cacophony of negative noises in the background; hissing of teeth, cursing, and complaints like ‘Yuh mad or something boy? Where you ever hear them welcoming Monday as a lovely morn eh? Steups! Monday morning is more a pain in the butt than anything else yes!’ 

And I respond by saying that’s because we have not planned properly for it. We all know that after Sunday is Monday and we have to get up to go to work. So why don’t we prepare ourselves as needed to do so eh? I guess it’s just the innate contrariness in us. (smile) 

But anyway, we have the right prescription for any negative feelings you have this morning. It’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. And when we sing it lustily, it just chases away all those Monday morning blues. So let’s put down a real lusty rendition now nuh. 

‘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!’ 

Wow mih breddren! That was certainly lusty! And yuh see how it drove away all your negative feelings. So let’s get a move on, make hay while the sun shines and the irons are hot and get out into the feckless, fickle, foolish world and spread the good news, the wonderful LOVE of our Lord and Saviour, our fearless Leader, Jesus Christ. 

Yes friends, we can go out and battle the enemy mano a mano (man to man) because of the assurance we have in scriptures like our Bit. ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present (abundantly available) help in trouble.’ 

And if that is not written deep and indelibly in your soul, then you are in trouble. For without the backing of Almighty God we cannot successfully fight the evil prince of this fallen world and his numerous evil cohorts. But with God sincerely entrenched in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls, we can move mountains! 

Remember how Jesus put it to His disciples when they could not heal an epileptic man? ‘Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence unto yonder place; and it shall remove (move); and nothing shall be impossible to you.’ (Matt.17:20) 

Ah mih people, we certainly have to believe, if we want to achieve. Now let’s check out a couple of other scripture passages which reassure us of God’s help and place of refuge in times of trouble.  First up are these verses from Psalm 33 – Praise to the Lord for his creation. 

‘Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; to deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine. Our soul waiteth for the Lord: he is our help and our shield. Let thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, according as we hope in thee.’ (Ps.33:18-22) Please note the psalmist’s sentiment in the last verse – for God’s mercy to fall on us in proportion to our hope in Him. As we sow, we shall reap. 

And we all know the famous words of Psalm 121 – God’s sustaining power. ‘I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.  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. 

The Lord is thy keeper (protector): the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord shall preserve (keep) thy soul. The Lord shall preserve (keep) thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.’ (Ps.121:1-8)  

And all God’s people gave a loud and grateful shout of ‘Glory Hallelujah! What a mighty God we serve and worship!’ And that’s the gospel truth my fellow believers. So with that assurance bubbling up in us, let’s go out now and fight the good fight with Christ, as we battle diligently in His LOVE Revolution, to retake the world from the evil prince of darkness. Much LOVE!

onward Christian soldiers…to fight…to fight…and to keep on fighting…with Jesus at our helm…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 November 2017 Jeremiah 13:15.

Jeremiah 13:15.   Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the Lord hath spoken.

Add another one friends! Yes, add another blessed day to your earthy life. The Lord’s just overwhelming in His generosity towards us, for which we ought to be thankful. And it’s Friday too, thus the workingman is singing his song. 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday… And am I ever ready for the weekend! The waters (alcoholic beverages) going to flow like water…the food’s going to be so plentiful that it’ll just blow yuh mind… and the music loud and heavy, with the bass line just thumping through yuh heart… Bredder! It going to be a great weekend of simply partying….party, party, party! Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Ah mih people, I don’t know about you all nuh, but I simply cannot handle that much partying…and I definitely don’t want that bass line thumping through my chest. I’ve felt it already, and it’s not a pleasant sensation. 

On the serious side though, all of that is just too much. Where is our Maker in all of it eh? Shouldn’t we find some time for Him in all the ‘kerfuffle’ of the weekend? Surely we should! 

What about resting and getting ourselves ready to go back out next week and fight the good fight eh? None of that is contained in the workingman’s song, but there certainly is need for it, if we are to live well-balanced, godly lives. 

That’s why our Friday Chant is a much better tribute to the weekend. So let’s sing it with much gusto now nuh. ‘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.’ 

That’s much more realistic and sensible and doesn’t go overboard in any one direction, but keeps us balanced in God’s sensibilities. And it brings us to our Bit for today: ‘Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the Lord hath spoken.’  

And yuh know what friends, until just now, I had no idea what the Bit would be. But as usual, I asked for guidance and then opened the Good Book… And lo and behold it opened unto the book of Jeremiah, and those were the first words that caught my eye. 

Yuh see how our God is faithful! And today He didn’t even have me searching for long. (smile) Some days He does though. So, as I keep saying, He won’t ask you to do something without giving you the wherewithal to do it. 

And in this particular case, though Jeremiah was having problems communicating with his people Israel, the Lord was still putting immortal words in his mouth. This section deals with Israel being like a drunken sailor come ashore; like the workingman above, with sin and virulent vice and ungodliness rampant in the nation. 

Therefore Jeremiah is crying out to his people, the warning words of their God. ‘Give glory to the Lord your God, before he cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and while ye look for light, he turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness.’ (Jer.13:16) 

Oh my people, I believe the Lord is giving us the same warning today, because there’s no doubt that our world is as sinful, ungodly and licentious as that of Israel back then. I’ll even wager that we are worse than them. And if the Bible is our Guide Book for earthly living, then we ought to pay careful attention to such words of warning anytime our world parallels those gone before. 

And moreover, I believe that all the natural and man-made disasters that have been recently befalling our world are also warning signs from God. We can sit down and debate and contemplate all we want, but the truth of the matter is that Almighty God exists, and He does not cotton to sin in any society in His universe. 

And eventually, there comes a time, after giving that society time to repent and move away from their sinfulness, that He unleashes His awesome wrath on selfsame society, and either brings them to heel, or wipes them out completely. 

We just have to go back through history to see the many societies which became powerful and sinful, and not worshipping Holy God, that eventually became extinct. Some of them were so violently and rapidly wiped off the map, that we have very little information or artifacts from their ascendancy here on earth. 

Oh my people, all I’m saying is that it’s better to be safe than sorry. Let’s take in front before in front takes us nuh. Let’s take God’s warnings seriously and change our sinful ways, before He obliterates us in His anger. 

As the psalmist recommends in Psalm 96 – A call to praise God: Let’s ‘Give (ascribe) unto the Lord, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the Lord glory and strength. Give (ascribe) unto the Lord the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come into his courts. 

O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness: fear (tremble) before him, all the earth. Say among the heathen (gentiles) that the Lord reigneth: the world also shall be (is firmly) established that it shall not be moved (shaken): he shall judge the people righteously.’ (Ps.96.7-10) 

All I can say friends, is that for our own sakes, we had better take that wise advice, otherwise…crapaud will eventually smoke we pipe! Much LOVE!

…a word of warning to the wise…is sufficient…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 October 2017 John 5:24.

John 5:24.   Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death into life.

So my people, if yesterday was Sunday, then today is our favourite day – Monday! Hn, hn! Well…it should be one of our favourite days, because it’s the beginning of a new workweek, and we don’t know what wonderful delights awaits us out in God’s great universe. (smile) But sadly, it’s become the day that many of us LOVE to hate! 

And why is that eh? Possibly because it means we have to leave the nice, warm, soft cocoon of our homes and go out into the evil world and fight the traffic, Lucifer’s henchmen, and ofttimes our Christian brethren too. And if we haven’t gotten sufficient rest, relaxation and rejuvenation over the weekend, then we will be grouchy and miserable on any and every Monday morning. 

However, we do have something to alleviate that Monday morning grouchiness, it’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. It’s designed to raise our spirits and get us up and running, so we can go out and fight the good fight for Jesus. So let’s sing it out loud nuh, with lots of faith and hope. 

As one strong choir: ‘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!’ 

Wow friends! What a difference that song makes, when we sing it with a strong sense of purpose! It does indeed lift our spirits, gets the adrenaline flowing and our motors purring like a well-oiled machine. Well then, what are we waiting for eh? Let’s get out there and give the heathen heck, in Jesus name! Show them what it means to be a real Christian, not the hypocrite kind! 

And how do we do that? By modelling Jesus – sharing His LOVE, FORGIVENESS, MERCY, GRACE and whatever else it takes to wake up the unbeliever to the fact that Jesus is their ONLY HOPE of true survival in this godless and wicked world. 

And how do we know that? From the words of absolute truth that Jesus spoke in our Bit.  ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death into life.’ 

Ah friends, what life changing words! Thankfully we have heard Jesus’ word and believed in the One who sent Him; our heavenly Father! That’s why we shall have eternal life and shall not be judged, be condemned to Hades, like the unbelievers will. Glory to God for His goodness to the children of men! 

Unfortunately though, a lot of the children of men don’t appreciate God’s goodness, therefore they continue to wallow in their wickedness and misery. And remember what Bruh David says about the state of the wicked in Psalm 11 – In the Lord put I my trust. 

‘The Lord trieth (tests) the righteous: but the wicked and him that LOVETH violence his soul hateth. Upon the wicked he shall rain snares (burning coals), fire and brimstone, and a horrible tempest (a burning wind): this shall be the portion of their cup (their portion to partake of). For the righteous Lord LOVETH righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright (the upright beholds his countenance).’ (Ps.11:5-7) 

Yes my brethren, that’s what the Lord has in store for the wicked unbelievers. Let’s hope we are not being counted amongst that lot, and instead are working hard to bring that kind to wise acceptance of Jesus, for that’s a major part of our earthly duty. Please remember friends, that we are Jesus’ hands and feet here on earth, His ambassadors, the ones others look to for wise direction in matters of spiritual life and death. 

So let’s get on with our tasks today like excellent, upstanding representatives of Christ nuh, not the wishy-washy, doh-care attitude that so many of us present to the world. That only hurts Christ’s image, brings derision and disbelief to His LOVE Revolution and truly makes us the hypocrites so many think we are. Much LOVE!

…stand up, stand up for Jesus…ye soldiers of the cross…till every foe is vanquished…and Christ is Lord indeed…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 April 2017 Joshua 24:15(a).

Joshua 24:15(a).   …choose you this day whom ye will serve…

Oh friends, it’s Monday, our favourite hate day!  (smile) And we only hate it because it means we have to get up and go out and labour, after spending a soft, cushy, licentious weekend. But them’s the breaks my people. You either go and work or be homeless and starve. 

And yuh better believe you’re darm lucky and blessed if you have a job, because there are millions of people out there who don’t have one and will gladly take yours in a heartbeat. So let’s start living right over the weekend nuh, so that on Monday we don’t have the set of steupsing and complaining we currently have. 

In any case, let’s take the antidote for that there illness right now; the glorious singing of our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. In full voice and perfect harmony, let’s belt it out: ‘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!’ 

Not bad friends, not bad, but not good enough to get a big rise out of our choirmaster Jesus. Anyway, with that adrenaline antidote taking effect, as it courses through our bodies, raising both our physical and spiritual capacity, let’s get a move on, for Jesus is waiting for us out on the battlefield, so we can fight the good fight with Him. Time to move out mih people! 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘choose you this day whom ye will serve…’ 

Yes friends, we can either serve the prince of this evil world, Beelzebub, or the Prince of Peace, of Light and Eternal Life, Jesus Christ. The decision is totally yours. But let me give you a li’l bit of wise advice. It will be better for you, if you serve Jesus Christ, for He is the mighty conqueror of hell, death and the grave, Beelzebub’s territory! That’s why Beelzebub now has no power over true believers, unless we fall for his lies and deceits. 

Now we all know the numerous times the Israelites turned away from God and suffered adversity, then caught themselves, repented and were welcomed back into the fold of God. Anybody with a bit of common sense can do that, but let’s check out an individual circumstance, where the reward of a Gentile for choosing the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob was immeasurable. 

We’re talking about the story of Ruth, the Moabitess, who immigrated to Bethlehem with her mother-in-law Naomi from her own land of Moab, after her husband, brother and father in-law had died, leaving three widows behind. Now Naomi, having heard that the ‘Lord had visited (attended to) his people in giving them bread,’ (Ruth 1:6) she decided to return to her people in Bethlehem, where it might be possible for a Jewish widow to scrape together a half-decent living. 

So she kissed and blessed her two daughters’ –in- law and told them to go back to their own people. But they wept and refused. However, eventually the one named Orpah did leave Naomi, ‘but Ruth clave (clung) unto her. (Ruth 1:7-15) 

‘And Ruth said, Entreat me not (urge me not) to leave thee, or return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also, if aught but death part thee and me.’ (Ruth 1:16-17) 

And the scholars tell us thus: ‘1:16-17. Ruth’s faith and faithfulness are in evidence throughout the book, as expressed here in her commitment to Naomi’s God as her own. Ruth’s own concern for Naomi is bound by a strong oath made before the Lord Himself.’ 

And how did the Lord repay Ruth’s faithfulness? By causing her to marry the richest man in the city and having a baby boy whom Naomi the grandmother nursed. ‘And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi; and they called his name Obed: he is the father of Jesse, the father of David.’ (Ruth 4:17) 

Ah friends, you never know what our great and wonderful God will do nuh! For from that union of Jew, Boaz, and Gentile, Ruth, came Bruh David and later his descendant Jesus!  So one more mysterious but wise working of our great God! 

And as the scholars declare: ‘from the union of Jew and Gentile would ultimately come the Saviour of all men. (Acts 4:12). The marriage of Boaz and Ruth may thus serve as a picture of Christ and His church through whom all believers become one (Eph.2:11-22).’  

No better way to end today my brethren! Much LOVE!

…as for me and mine…we WILL serve the Lord…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 December 2016 2 Timothy 4:7.

 2 Timothy 4:7.   I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith.

Ah mih people, at long last a semi-serious snowfall has hit my area. Chuh! And the time was going by so nicely! But that’s the nature of this good country Canada; wintertime means snow is very likely to disrupt the situation. (smile) 

However, it wasn’t too bad a snowstorm, and hopefully by now the roads would have been cleared and salted. But still, please be careful if you have to drive because there is liable to be some icy sections out there. 

And you’d think that the snow would dampen the weekend enthusiasm…not on yuh life! The shouting of  ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday, and the weekend is upon us!’ still rings out. ‘A li’l snow can’t stop the party. We’ll just have to stay inside and keep warm, while the drinks and whatnot flow! Thank God for Fridays and the weekends oui!’ 

Now that’s the song of the heathen, let’s sing that of the righteous; our Friday Chant, with as much, if not more verve and enthusiasm than the heathen. All together 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 better way of handling the weekend, than simply giving into the lusts of the flesh and celebrating with gay abandon. 

Anyway, let’s turn to our Bit; Bruh Paul’s immortal words, for the last time. ‘I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith.’ 

Oh precious people of God, it is essential that we believers in Jesus Christ, fight a good fight against the evil of this world! The world will not simply allow us to live our lives according to God’s will, because it doesn’t fit into their programme of sin and iniquity. 

That means, at each and every chance they get, they will try to dissuade us from following the righteous path with lustful and fleshly temptations. But we have to learn to resist it. 

As we saw Bruh Paul tell the Corinthians yesterday: ‘But I keep under (discipline) my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway (disqualified).’ (1 Cor.9:27) 

And I worked that verse in there because I want to share a very interesting explanation of the scholars on it. ‘9:27. I keep under my body (i.e. discipline my body): The expression I keep under loses much of the original sense. It has the idea of to “give one a black eye,” “buffet,” or “bruise.” 

Paul’s readers knew that in the Isthmian Games, the boxers wore gloves consisting of ox-hide hands covered with knots and nails, and loaded with lead and iron. To prepare for such an event, a man would have to brace himself to endure all forms of physical abuse. 

Lest that by any means …I myself should be a castaway (lit. “So that …I myself should not be disqualified”): Paul was afraid of losing his salvation: his subject is still Christian liberty. The point is that the believer must discipline himself to avert both being disqualified from Christian ministry, and forfeiting the rewards for such service.’ 

Oh friends, can you imagine the bloodied bodies of the boxers in those olden times. One would have to be very brave and single minded to take part in such a carnal sport. But that’s the kind of mentality we need to have to fight off the temptations of this world and eventually win the victor’s crown. 

We can’t afford to be disqualified from Christ’s ministry and also lose the rewards earned through doing it. Now hear what Bruh Paul told Timothy in his first message re the good fight of faith. 

‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things: and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.’ (1 Tim.6:11-12) 

And the scholars explain: ‘6:11. Flee these things means shun a LOVE for money (v.10) and the striving for material wealth (v.9) with all its resulting woes. Follow after means pursue. Righteousness is practical correctness, conforming to God’s will in one’s thinking and acting. 

Godliness is proper reverence for, and obedience to God. Faith is a trust in God that grows stronger. LOVE is a maturing affection for God and man. Patience is perseverance or steadfastness in life and service. Meekness is gentleness.’  

‘6:12. The good fight concerns the daily struggle with sin in the Christian life, and the hardships and adversities in the ministry. A genuine believer demonstrates the reality of his faith by being engaged in this warfare. 

Lay hold on eternal life does not negate the fact that a believer now possesses spiritual life (John 3:36); rather, it speaks of fully realizing or appropriating salvation as the believer matures.’ 

Ah friends, the life of a true believer is not an easy one. As Jesus told the disciples, we’d be persecuted just for believing in Him: ‘but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.’ (Matt.10:22) 

So it’s up to us to keep persevering, keep fighting the good fight, keep maturing, obviously with God’s help, until we reach the end and are presented with the victor’s crown. 

Wow mih people! What a day that will be! It will certainly be worth all the trials and tribulations endured in this earthly pilgrimage! Much LOVE!

…to fight the good fight successfully…one must have plenty belly and backbone…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 August 2016 Deuteronomy 4:29.

Deuteronomy 4:29.     But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.

Awright my people, it’s the big day, Sunday, the Sabbath, a day of praise and worship! So let’s get straight to it nuh, let’s sing this popular song of praise and worship by Rick Founds, ‘Lord I lift Your name on high.

With strong voices and sincere hearts let’s allow our song to rise to heaven and warm the cockles of Jesus’ heart as we praise and glorify His awesome majesty, magnify His holy name and give Him thanks for all that’s He’s done for us. 

‘Lord I lift Your name on high  Lord I love to sing Your praises  I’m so glad You’re in my life  I’m so glad You came to save us You came from Heaven to earth  To show the way  From the earth to the cross  My debt to pay  From the cross to the grave  From the grave to the sky  Lord I lift Your name on high… Lord I lift Your name on high… Lord I lift Your name on high…’ 

Beautiful my people, truly beautiful! Heaven had to be moved by such an outpouring of praise and thanksgiving! Now since I couldn’t share yesterday, the two of our friend Anselm’s quotes that I usually share, I’ll include one today. And it simply says: ‘When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.’ 

So true friends, so true! We all know that when one door closes another is usually opened, but we pine for what’s behind the closed door so much, especially if it was good, that ofttimes we can’t see, or are not even aware of the newly opened door. We’ve got to learn that when God shuts a door, we’re to leave it alone, look elsewhere for the next thing He has earmarked for us. 

But, sadly, being creatures of habit and comfort, allergic to change, we still yearn and hunger for what’s behind the closed door, although deep down we know that the Lord has something better waiting for us through the newly opened door. Yes my brethren, we have to keep looking forward not backward. 

As they say, the Lord brings certain things and people into our lives for a reason and/or a season, but when that time is up, and He shuts that door, we have to let whatever it is go and move on. Otherwise we’ll spend our lives miserable, wanting and wishing for what is no longer available to us. End of sermon! (smile) 

Let’s turn to our Bit; the same one we’ve had for the last couple days. Why, you ask? Because it’s such an important scripture, one on which our basic faith is based, and thus there are several references to it throughout the Good Book. And more importantly, it is very appropriate for these evil and ungodly times in which we’re now living. 

Just listen to the great promise it contains. ‘But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.’ 

Oh my fellow believers, what a glorious promise that is from our magnanimous and merciful God! In our most sinful times, our times of trials and tribulations, of disobedience and idolatry, it is yet possible to seek Jehovah God, through confession and repentance, a sincere heart and soul and find Him. Wow! 

Oh friends, that’s something our world needs to take advantage of RIGHT NOW because everything is falling down around us. War and strife, poverty, hunger, persecution, homelessness, failing economies, failing families and societies; those are the things that are currently colouring, are currently prominent in our world. 

Things like LOVE, peace, harmony, compassion, understanding and helping each other are unfortunately on the way out. And the ONLY way to change the negative aspects of our world is to turn to God in true repentance and receive His graceful forgiveness. 

Now hear this warning of the prophet Azariah to the Israelites. ‘And the Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded. And he went out to meet (before) Asa (the king) and said unto him. Hear ye me, Asa and all Judah and Benjamin; the Lord is with you, while ye be with him; and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he will forsake you. 

Now for a long season Israel hath been without the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law. But when they in their troubles did turn unto the Lord God of Israel, and sought him, he was found of them.’ (2 Chr.15:1-4)  

Ah friends, although the Israelites were stiff-necked, stubborn and hard-headed and often disobeyed God, when the rough times, meaning God’s punishment, really caught up to them, they were smart enough to return to worshipping the God of their fathers. Now why can’t we recognize our serious plight and realize that God’s hand is working against us and turn back to Him eh? 

The Israelites did it several times, and each time He welcomed them back with opened arms. He will certainly do the same for us, that is, if we can wake up before our entire world falls down, disintegrates around us. And it all depends on us my fellow believers in Christ, through the Great Commission (Matt.28:19-20), we are supposed to spread the good news of Christ all over the world. And right now we have the tools to do it. 

So let’s get serious nuh, put our hands to the plough and just move forward with the saving grace of Christ’s LOVE Revolution. He is depending on His church to fight the good fight…and win it too. 

Now let’s end with a rather appropriate piece of scripture, words of our wonderful God, after He had spoken to the Israelites out of the mountain of fire, and they were all afraid. And the Lord said unto Moses. ‘O that there were such a heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!’ (Deut.5:29) 

That says it all friends! Now let’s go out and do our best for Jesus, because that’s what He expects of us. Much LOVE!

…only true LOVE…in the guise of Jesus…can save our fast deteriorating world…

 

 

 

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