Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 October 2016 Isaiah 53:7.

Isaiah 53:7.   He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought (was led) as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. 

Aye mih people, is Sunday, that special day of praise, worship and fellowship, where we raise our hearts and voices to high heaven and glorify our most wonderful God Jehovah! 

And we’re going to start out the right way, with some praise and worship. That’s to soften us up, reduce the fear, tension, anger, resentment, whatever is negative in our stone cold hearts, and thus make us more receptive and amenable to receiving the Word. Remember, hearing of the word is very important in our Christian faith. 

As Bruh Paul told the church at Rome. ‘How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? …So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.’ (Rom.10:14, 17) 

Yes friends, the oral communication of the gospel of Christ is essential in a believer’s life, and there’s nothing I enjoy more than hearing the word preached. 

Anyway, enough talk, we suppose to be offering up sacrifices of thanks and praise with our mouths. So let’s do that nuh, because there’s nothing nicer than getting into some good praise and worship before you hear the word. 

So let’s raise up a storm in the Lord’s house, show Him that we are truly His beloved children, and we sincerely LOVE Him with all of our hearts, minds, bodies and souls. Please sing with me, this wonderful song of faith, ‘The anchor holds.’ 

As one heavenly choir now: ‘I have journeyed through the long dark night, Out on the open sea, by faith alone, Sight unknown; and yet his eyes were watching me. The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered. The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. 

I’ve had visions, I’ve had dreams; I’ve even held them in my hand. But I never knew they would slip right through, Like they were only grains of sand. The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered. The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. 

I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. I have been young but I’m older now. And there has been beauty these eyes have seen. But it was in the night, through the storms of my life, Oh, that’s where God proved His LOVE for me. 

The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered.  The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm.’ 

Oh my people, my people, truer words have never been spoken! Our omnipotent God, our great anchor, holds us together and keeps us from floundering, from being thrown on the rocky shores, even in the most catastrophic of life’s storms! 

And I like the line where the songwriter declares that it was in the night of the storms of life when God proved His LOVE for Him. And isn’t that the indisputable truth friends? It’s usually in our nights of misery, of fear, of loneliness and of despair, that our wonderful God shows how much He truly LOVES and cares for us, by standing faithful and strong alongside us and bringing us safely through! 

Oh glory to God my people! And why wouldn’t He eh, after sending His beloved Son, Jesus Christ to die for us, suffering such agony, shame and rejection, but forever standing strong in His God-given task as expressed in our Bit. ‘He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought (was led) as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.’ 

What stoicism and strength of purpose my faithful brethren! Now let’s hear the word that precedes our Bit, from Isaiah’s great prophecy, re the suffering servant, Jesus Christ. Hope our hearts are soft enough to joyfully receive it. 

‘Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm (power) of the Lord revealed? For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no (stately) form nor comeliness (splendour); and when we shall see him, there is no beauty (elegance) that we should desire him. 

He is despised and rejected of (forsaken by) men; a man of sorrows (great pains), and acquainted with grief (sickness, injuries): and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs (sickness), and carried our sorrows (pains): yet we did esteem (reckon) him stricken, smitten of (struck down by) God, and afflicted. 

But he was wounded (pierced through) for our transgressions, he was bruised (crushed) for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.’ (Is;53:1-6) 

Yes friends, that’s the scripture lesson for this Sunday morning, and I do hope that it struck a tender and most grateful note in our hearts, as we heard the of the ‘sufferation’ that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ went through for us, so that we could be reconciled to Almighty God and don’t end up in dreaded Hades forevermore with the evil one, Lucifer. 

Please, let’s ponder the goodness of our magnificent and magnanimous God today, so that we can find the strength and wherewithal to handle the storms of life that we all experience, for that is the wisdom of heaven. Much LOVE!

…without the anchor that’s God in our lives…we will certainly be dashed to pieces… on the dreadful and unforgiving rocks of sin…

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 February 2016 Psalm 53:1‏‏‏

Psalm 53:1.   The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. Corrupt are they, and have done abominable iniquity: there is none that doeth good.

Oh friends, there is so much I want to say this beautiful Thursday morning, but I simply can’t say anything! Chuh! 

Has that ever happened to you? My mind is a jumble of thoughts and whatever else that I can’t seem to make sense of, but I’m not worried because I know that our great and magnanimous God will eventually look down on me with empathy and guide me to what He wants me to say. 

I guess that part of my problem is that I have a touch of the flu and cough that’s causing my asthma to act up a bit. And there’s nothing that drives me bonkers like coughing. 

Anyway, I went to the funeral of an old schoolmate yesterday afternoon in Mt. St. George – and now I realize why it’s so named, for we had to drive up a steep, winding road littered with potholes to reach the church, then come another steep winding one to get back to the main road. 

It’s a good thing the duchess wasn’t my co-pilot, because I don’t know if we would have made it back safely. (smile) 

The funeral was well attended, and I saw people whom I hadn’t seen in donkey’s years (smile). The deceased lived in the U.S but was brought back home to her village for burial, exactly what I want to happen to me. 

And to show how our God moves in mysterious ways, he took one home but also breathed life in to a newborn son of one of my surrogate daughters down here. Glory to God! 

Now a buddy and I was supposed to go touring today, but it seems that he imbibed a tad too much last night, so he is also under the weather, which means that tour will have to be put off indefinitely. 

Ah mih people, my time in sweet Tobago is swiftly drawing to a close, and as the duchess said recently, the problem is not how we’re going to face the cold up in the Northern climes, but how we’re going to leave this paradise? It will definitely be hard, although every day we complain how the sun is so hot. 

So I guess today will just be a day of rest and later this evening I’ll go to the Bible Study class up the road. I heard they missed me last week when I was in Trinidad. I missed them too, because it was a spirited gathering, West Indian style. And call me biased, but nothing beats anything, West Indian style! (smile) 

Now that’s the end of my news, but before we get to our Bit, I want to share these words of wisdom from one Leviticus, whom I assume was an olden Greek philosopher. And he is reputed to have said that: ‘He who attempts to resist the wave is swept away, but he who bends before it abides.’ 

And I rediscovered that in reality recently on the beach. I tried to fight off a big wave and it sent me crashing into the sand. But another one, instead of trying to fight it, I rode it successfully into the shore. 

The same way it is with life my friends, especially when we are getting up in age and can’t fight all the unusual stuff that’s coming against us; all the aches and pains and illnesses. We have to learn to bend with the tide, if we hope to continue living a full and enjoyable life. 

That also means we cannot emulate the people in our Bit. ‘The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. Corrupt are they, and have done abominable iniquity: there is none that doeth good.’ 

Now, though we know better, the prosperity of the wicked can sometimes drive us to want what they have. Listen to the psalmist Asaph, as he discourses in Psalm 73 on 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 (I 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) 

Yes friends, although Asaph knew better, the sinful human nature still enticed him to be envious of the wicked in their earthly prosperity. And unfortunately it still does the same thing to us in these very trying and difficult times. 

But we need to see the treachery and deceit of material possession and earthly prosperity for what it really is; ofttimes a temptation of the enemy, and don’t allow it to get us caught up in its wicked tentacles. Because once we sell our soul for those things, it’s not very easy to get out of Lucifer’s contract. 

Now hear Bruh Paul to Titus on Christian citizenship and the basis of the Christian ethic. ‘Put them in mind to be subject to principalities (rulers) and powers (authorities), to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work. To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers (not contentious), but gentle, showing all meekness unto all men. 

For we ourselves also were sometime foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But after that the kindness and LOVE of God our Saviour toward man appeared, 

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed (poured out) on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour. That being justified (declared righteous) by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.’ (Titus 3:1-7) 

Yes my fellow believers in Christ, it’s only through God’s grace and mercy and LOVING-kindness, poured out on us through Christ that we are able to withstand the wiles and lies of the evil one. That means we have to stand strong and steadfast in faith if we want to resist the enemy. 

Now here is some info from the scholars on the term ‘regeneration.’‘3:5. Regeneration refers to the work of the Holy Spirit in the salvation experience that produces new life in the believer. To express this concept, Jesus used the expression “born again” in His conversation with Nicodemus (John 3:3-7). 

Regeneration is the work of God, through the Holy Spirit, of placing in one who has faith a new nature, capable of doing God’s will. The Holy Spirit is the agent or divine workman of this regeneration. His instrument is the Bible, which is likened to a hammer that judges sin (Jer.23:29), a mirror that reveals sin (James 1:23), a sword that defeats Satan (Heb.4:12), and a lamp that guides the believers (Ps.119:105). 

Illustration: People are instantaneously “born again “the moment they trust Christ as Saviour. (1 Pet.1:23). Application: Christians should be careful to cooperate with God in growing as children of God after they are regenerated, or given new life. (First Ref. John 3:3), Primary Ref. Titus 3:5. cf. Eph.1:15.).’ 

Oh friends, only by cooperating with God and growing in the likeness of Christ, can we ever hope to stave off the foolishness and deceit of the enemy! And it will benefit us all, if we looked up the references the scholars provided. (smile) 

Now let’s end with some more words of Bruh Paul to Titus. ‘This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men.’ (Titus 3:8) 

There’s nothing left to say my brethren, except that we should all go out, each and every day, being careful to do works that enhance the gospel of Christ, so that the heathen can see the true beauty in living for Christ and want to come to Him. It’s our bounden duty. Much LOVE!

…talk is cheap…but good works cost something…Christians should be prepared to pay that cost…  

P.S. I know it’s long, but God’s word is worth it. (smile) Much LOVE!