Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 April 2018 1 Timothy 2:4.

1 Timothy 2:4.    Who will (desires to) have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

One more day, you beautiful people of Jehovah God! Yes, we’ve been blessed with another day on God’s great earth, to enjoy His awesome LOVE, mercy, grace and forgiveness! How can you beat that eh? You just can’t! So let’s begin by giving the Most High some praise and thanks for all that He’s done, doing, and will do for us, even though we don’t deserve it. 

Please pray with me: ‘Oh heavenly Father, thank You for this day and all the amazing promises You’ve made! We know that You are faithful to keep them, therefore we surrender our hearts, souls and bodies to Your everlasting mercy and grace. 

Please lead and guide us to do Your will, like Jesus did. Then receive us in glory, like You did with Him. We pray this in the holy name of Jesus, the name that’s above every other name, because of His selfless sacrifice on the cross of Calvary for us. Amen!’ 

Yeh friends, we can never give God enough thanks and praise for all that He’s done on our behalf. So please let’s not think more highly of ourselves than we should. It’s ONLY through His LOVING-kindness that we still exist. 

Now here is a li’l something from Uncle John (John Hagee) to titivate our minds. (smile) ‘Nothing has meaning until we live it. Meaning: it’s not what you know, it’s how you apply what you know.’ And that’s the gospel truth my brethren! 

All the knowledge in the world won’t help you until you put it into action. So all those people who just keep on going to school for going to school sake, and not doing anything useful with the knowledge they acquire, are simply wasting their time and their lives. I know that they say knowledge is power, but only if you use the knowledge. 

And today we’ll contemplate what is the most important bit of knowledge a man can have, as we look at Bruh Paul’s exhortation to Timothy regarding prayer. 

He opens the chapter thus: ‘I exhort therefore that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority (a prominent place); that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty (reverence). For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour.’ (1 Tim.2:1-3). 

And the scholars offer these explanations: ‘2:1. First of all (or, “most important of all”): Prayer is to hold the preeminent place in church meetings. Four different types of prayer are mentioned here: (1) supplications are precise requests for specific needs; (2) prayers is a general word embracing various kinds of prayer – confession, adoration, and so on; (3) intercessions denote prayer to God on behalf of others; (4) giving of thanks refers to prayers of praise.’ 

And per verses 2-3, the scholars say: ‘There are three reasons why the prayers of verse 1 are to be offered “for all men”: (1) that Christians may enjoy a tranquil life (v.2); (2) such praying is good and acceptable to God (v.3); (3) such prayers help bring about the salvation of men (v.4).’ 

So there we have it friends, prayer helps us live quiet, untroubled peaceful lives and helps with our salvation.  But all of it is a waste of time unless we truly understand the root purpose for it all, that’s found in our Bit: ‘Who will (desires to) have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.’ 

Yes my people, that is our God’s greatest wish; that we all be saved and come to know the truth, which is: ‘For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. (Jesus’ sacrifice is proof of God’s will for all to be converted). Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity (truth).’ (1 Tim. 2:5-7) 

And per the scholars: ‘2:5-7. These verses provide a threefold evidence confirming the assertion in v.4 that God “will have all men to be saved”: (1) There being but one God implies that He must have the same desire toward all people, which is, namely their salvation. 

One mediator suggests His having made the same provision for all people, namely redemption. (2) Jesusgave himself a ransom for all (v6). (3) Paul’s being divinely ordained…a teacher of the Gentiles (v.7) shows that if sinful pagans are instructed in faith and verity (truth), then surely God does indeed want all to be saved.’ 

And that’s the indisputable truth my brethren, otherwise He wouldn’t have made all the provision He’s made, especially through Christ’s sacrifice. So please, let’s keep that first place in our minds, and wisely try to live the kind of life it suggests; a godly, prayerful and righteous one. Now let’s end with our Wednesday Wail, where we tell the world about our wonderful journey with Jesus. 

In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

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

Ah friends, everytime I consider that glorious future laid up for us, I just LOVE Jesus more! Much LOVE!

…salvation for all…God’s number ONE desire…

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 November 2017 Psalm 84:11.

Psalm 84:11.   For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.

 HAPPY  ARMISTICE,  REMEMBRANCE,  VETERAN’S  DAY!

Yeh friends, it’s the 99th anniversary of the Great War; the First World War; the war that was supposed to end ALL WAR! Hn! But they didn’t count on the Second World War less than 30 years later. 

And I seriously doubt that war will ever disappear from man’s agenda until our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ returns in all His splendiferous glory and takes control, for mankind from his fall, has been an angry, war-like animal. Peace and LOVE are only overlays, cover ups for his naturally aggressive and warmongering nature. 

In the United Kingdom they call it Armistice Day, in Canada Remembrance Day and in the U. S of A, Veteran’s Day. And we honour our fallen dead by wearing poppies on our clothes during this sad time of remembrance and awful waste of human life. 

And all over the world, this most famous war memorial poem, In Flanders’ Fields, is read on this day. It was written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae in May 1915, on the battlefields of Belgium, after the death and burial of one of his friends, Alexis Helmer by a German shell. 

Please remember with me: ‘In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row, That mark our place: and in the sky The larks still bravely singing fly Scarce heard amid the guns below. We are the dead: Short days ago, We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, LOVED and were LOVED: and now we lie In Flanders fields! 

Take up our quarrel with the foe To you, from failing hands, we throw The torch: be yours to hold it high If ye break faith with us who die, We shall not sleep, though poppies grow In Flanders fields.’ 

Ah mih people, sadly, there are even more quarrels and foes than when this poem was written. Man has not learned anything from the ravages of war. But we won’t linger on the topic of war, instead we’ll turn to a more uplifting subject, quotes from our friend Anselm, who sincerely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

Here is the first one: ‘I Am Thankful For All Of Those Who Said, “No” To Me. It’s Because Of Them I’m Doing It Myself.’ And in some respects I can attest to that, because some of the things I am doing for myself now are because others didn’t want to do them for me. Refusal often leads to your getting up and doing stuff yourself. 

But in saying that, we have to realize that ‘Success Does Not Consist In Never Making Mistakes, But In Never Making The Same One A Second Time.’ We all make mistakes, but when we keep making the same one(s) over and over, then something’s definitely wrong with our modus operandi. 

That leads us to this next quote: ‘Your Life Only Gets Better When You Get Better.’ Truth in a nutshell people! Then there is this one: ‘Think Big And Don’t Listen To People Who Tell You It Can’t Be Done. Life’s Too Short To Think Small.’ 

Now there is much to be said for that, but to a certain extent we also have to recognize our limitations, although with our awesome and omnipotent God, anything at all is possible. Glory to God! 

And I like this last quote: ‘Trust is like an eraser, it gets smaller and smaller after every mistake.’ Now isn’t that the gospel truth! Every time we abuse the trust others have in us, the supply gets lower, until it just plain runs out, and they don’t trust us anymore, regardless of what we say or do. 

In fact, we’re lucky to get more than one chance at that state of trust. The only place where second, third, fourth and even fifth chances are possible without condemnation and disgrace is with the Lord God Almighty, Maker of heaven, earth and all therein. 

As our Bit tells us: ‘For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.’ 

But even then, in general, He expects us to walk in His will, not in disobedience all of the time. But you do have chances to repent and confess and be forgiven. And though His trust in you won’t diminish, you will feel the consequences of disobedience, you will be chastened in some form and fashion. 

But He will NEVER leave you nor forsake you! You have His ever-faithful promise on that.  As Bruh David so rightly declares in Psalm 34 – The Lord hears the righteous. 

‘O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the Lord, ye his saints: for there is no want (lack) to them that fear him. The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the Lord shall not want (lack) any good thing.’ (Ps.34:8-10) 

Oh friends, it couldn’t be put any simpler than that. So today, as we remember the fallen, and ponder the unfortunate ravages of war, let’s be wise nuh, try and walk uprightly, and reach out to our God with penitent and contrite hearts; seek Him in all honesty, so that He can bless and forgive and restore our fallen world. That is heavenly wisdom! Much LOVE!

…seek…knock…ask…and you will be answered…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 January 2017 Psalm 23:1.

Psalm 23:1.   The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want (lack).

Well friends, it’s Friday…and what a big Friday too! One that will eventually decide what our world will look like in the future. We’re talking about the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States of America! 

Wow! As the man says, only in America! I don’t know if there has ever been a more divisive leader in the free world! But as a friend keeps telling me: ‘Don’t worry, Trump might be riding high now, but GOD IS STILL IN CONTROL!’ 

And that’s the gospel truth my people, our Creator is still in control, and always will be, and His plans are the ones that will eventually prevail. 

But it’s also necessary that we pray fervently for the U.S. of A, because unfortunately, as they go, so does a majority of our world. That means we need for them to be strong and productive and unified, else our lives will also be affected in some negative way or another. 

But yuh know what? Some people don’t care about all the hoopla surrounding Trump’s inauguration, they are still basically concerned about having the weekend off and being able to do whatever then want, when ever they want. 

That’s because they know that come next week, they will still have to go back out and labour under the same strenuous and unfair circumstances. 

So they are still singing: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes, and the whole weekend is my oyster! It’s party time! It’s get down time! It’s whatever I want, when ever time! So thank you Lord for Fridays and the weekend!’ 

But as always, that’s simply pushing the envelope too far. Our Friday Chant brings a much better perspective to the situation. So let’s declare it with sincerity and strong faith 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!’ 

Yes my fellow believers, that’s a much better way to characterize our weekend, so let’s move on now to our Bit. ‘The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want (lack).’ 

And tough t’s (smile) to those who don’t like our continued use of that awesome line of scripture! Don’t blame me, I’m just the messenger, doing what I’ve been led to do. It’s the Lord’s will, and as we said earlier on, it will ALWAYS prevail! 

Now let’s look at verse 4 of that amazing Psalm, 23, which we all know and continually quote. ‘Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.’ (Ps.23:4) 

Mama Mia! What a most reassuring scripture! And in Psalm 3 – A prayer of confidence in God – when running from his rebellious son, Absalom, Bruh David again declares his immense faith and trust in the God of his forefathers. 

‘I laid me down and slept; I awaked; for the Lord sustained me. I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people, that have set themselves against me round about.’ (Ps.3:5-6) 

Oh my brothers and sisters in Christ, can we make such a declaration in all honesty and truth? I do hope so, for we need that stage of maturity to help us handle this evil world without fear. 

Listen to Bruh David again from Psalm 27. ‘The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? 

When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up (devour) my flesh, they stumbled and fell. Though a host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.’ (Ps. 17:1-3) 

Oh friends, those are the kind of words we need to confidently declare in these cruel and tumultuous times, if we hope to win this world for Christ. 

And we’ll end with this momentous promise of our omnipotent God from Isaiah, as he talks about ‘The Lord, the only redeemer.’ 

‘But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. 

When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon (scorch) thee. 

For I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour: I gave Egypt for thy ransom, Ethiopia and Seba for thee (in thy place).’ (Is.43:1-3) 

All I can say to that amazing set of promises is that the Lord fulfilled them all in some form and fashion! He created us, then when we fell into the trap of sin, He redeemed us through Jesus Christ. He parted the Red Sea and the Jordan River for the Israelites to walk over on dry land. 

Then remember the three Hebrew children, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who refused to bow to the golden image that the Babylonian king, Nebuchadnezzar made, and were thrust into the furnace, heated to a temperature seven times hotter than normal. 

And what happened? They cane out alive, not even smelling of smoke! Wow! And the Lord God of Israel will do the same for all those who sincerely believe and trust in Him! Please ponder seriously on all that today my brethren, for therein lies the secret to life. Much LOVE!

…if God doesn’t save…then who does eh…  

P.S. Please excuse the lateness of the Bit, but I did a lot of successful running around yesterday, obviously buoyed by the Lord’s help, and my penchant for late nights have simply not abated as yet. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 December 2016 Luke 1:76.

Luke 1:76.   And thou child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways. 

Oh friends, it’s Christmas Eve, the day before the big one – Christmas Day, when we joyfully celebrate the birth of our most wonderful Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Glory to God in the highest for selflessly blessing us with Jesus Christ! 

But yuh know what, is not everybody that celebrating this Christmas time nuh. I heard today that another of my U.W.I (University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica) classmates, Dwight Venner died yesterday. Ah Lord eh! He is at least the sixth one that I know about, who has died this year. Steups! 

And all of them were around my age yes. That certainly brings your own mortality to mind. But you can’t do anything about it nuh, just keep on doing what the Lord has called you to do and hope for the best. The only thing we’re really sure of in this life is that someday the Grim Reaper will come a calling and we’ll go whether we want to or not. 

So I’m asking us on this Christmas Eve day to pray for the Venner family in their time of grief. I believe he was from St. Lucia, and just ask the Lord to comfort them in their mourning when they should be celebrating the birth of Christ. It’s not easy to lose anybody at all, much less at a time like this. 

Let’s also remember to pray for Keith, our Scrip-Bit family member, who is slowly recovering from his stroke, and comfort him too while he mourns the loss of his departed brother. 

Remember, as James says: ‘Confess your faults (trespasses) one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual (effective) fervent prayer (supplication) of a righteous man availeth much.’(James 5:16) Yeh friends, prayer is the greatest power we have down here on God’s great earth, so please let’s use it often and wisely nuh. 

Now I have so much scripture to share that I only have space for one of our friend Anselm’s quotes today. And I had a hard time choosing one, because they were all interesting, they all can inspire us for a better tomorrow.  And this is the one that finally won out: ‘Goodness is about character – integrity, honesty, kindness, generosity, moral courage, and the like. More than anything else, it is about how we treat other people.’ 

And that’s no lie my brethren, all those qualities are very important parts and qualities of our Christian life! Now since John the Baptist was Christ’s cousin as well as His forerunner and harbinger, I thought this Christmas Eve would be a good time to check out John’s early story, as we will do tomorrow for Christ. 

This brings us to our Bit: ‘And thou child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways.’ Those were the prophetic words of John the Baptist’s father, Zechariah, at his circumcision. Now our God is such a dramatist that sometimes I have to shake my head in wonder at His doings. 

Remember how he made Zechariah dumb because he didn’t believe that his barren wife Elisabeth would eventually bear him a child. (Luke 1:5-25) And also how He brought Mary and Elisabeth together and caused John to jump for joy in his mother’s womb when he heard Mary’s voice, and the three months the women spent bonding together. 

Let the Good Book tell us the story: ‘Now Elisabeth’s full time came that she should be delivered; and she brought forth a son. And her neighbours and her cousins (relatives) heard how the Lord had showed great mercy upon her, and they rejoiced with her. (Her barrenness was no longer a cause for reproach). 

And it came to pass, that on the eight day they came to circumcise the child; and they called him Zechariah, after the name of his father. And his mother answered and said, Not so; but he shall be called John. And they said unto her, There is none of thy kindred that is called by this name. And they made signs to his father, how he would have him called. And he asked for a writing table, and wrote, saying, His name is John. 

And they marvelled all. And his mouth was opened immediately, and he spake, and praised God. And fear came on all that dwelt round about them: and all these sayings (things) were noised abroad (discussed) throughout all the hill country of Judea. And all they that heard them laid (kept) them up in their hearts, saying, What manner of child shall this be! And the hand of the Lord was with him.’ (Luke 1:57-66) 

Oh my people, there’s no better dramatist than our God! And to add to that drama, the scholars tell us: ‘1:65. Fear came: The working of God produced a unique sensation among a people where not even a prophet had spoken for centuries.’  

And after that, Zechariah just went mad prophesying, making up for all those months that he’d been dumb. Filled with the Holy Ghost, he prophetically declared. ‘Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, and hath raised up a horn of salvation (A Mighty Deliverer) for us in the house of his servant David. As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all them that hate us;’ (Luke 1:68-71) 

I have to leave out four verses here because of lack of space. But then Zechariah continued with our Bit. ‘And thou child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways. To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission (forgiveness) of their sins, Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring (dawn, Messiah) from on high hath visited us. 

To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. And the child grew, and waxed (became) strong in spirit, and was in the deserts till the day of his showing (manifestation) unto Israel.’ (Luke 1:76-80) 

Ah friends, yuh see the amazing power and dramatic expertise of our wonderful God! And that was child’s play to how He brought Jesus on the scene. (smile) We’ll talk about that tomorrow, the Lord willing. Till then, may he bless and keep us all safe and sound and cause us to enjoy the celebrations of the birth of His only Son, Jesus! Much LOVE!

…who is greater than our God eh…NOBODY…!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 December 2016 Psalm 28:7.

Psalm 28:7.   The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.

And then it was Friday… And the snow not joking at all nuh friends; it had Toronto all snarled and tied up again yesterday evening and last night. Hn! It took one friend, several hours to get home in what would normally be a forty-five minute drive. But that’s the price you pay for living in the northern climes. 

In my area though, the snow didn’t fall till later in the night, but the wind was a howling all day long! I wanted to go out the street, but when I heard the wind and saw what it was doing to the poor, naked trees, I decided to stay in my warm nest instead. What I wanted to do, could certainly wait for a better weather day. (smile) 

And this Friday morning there are going to be more difficulties on the road again. So please my people, leave home early and take your time on the road. Watch out for the crazies! They say it’s better to arrive late, than not arrive at all. 

And what amazes me, is that rain, shine or snow, nothing stops the weekenders from singing their li’l ditty. ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday…and we have the weekend to we selves! As the song says, let it snow, let it snow, for all we care. 

A fine time is going to be had by all! We can’t go outside, so we going to party inside! Thank God for weekends and Fridays yes!’ 

Ah mih people, the party life is nice for a little while, but it soon kills you, both spiritually and physically when you overdo it. What we need to do is to have a modicum of circumspection in our activities, like our Friday Chant says. 

Let’s chant it now nuh, in strong voice, truly believing that what we’re declaring is the best way to handle the weekend. ‘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 friends, that is indeed the best way to navigate our weekends; a little bit of everything, everything in moderation, because we need to be fresh, energetic and passionate come Monday morning. And how can we mange that eh? 

Listen to our Bit from Psalm 28 – Bruh David’s prayer for God’s help. ‘The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.’ 

What a strong and unwavering declaration my fellow believers! Can we make such a declaration in all truth and honesty? We ought to, if we are true followers of Jesus Christ. Bruh David knew on which side his bread was buttered after doing so much running from his enemies, like Saul and his own son Absalom. 

Yeh mih people, only because of his great faith and trust in the Lord God Almighty was he able to defeat or get away from his many foes. His cries and prayers in times of trouble had not gone unanswered; therefore he placed his ultimate hope of salvation in the hands of the God of his fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. 

And so should we friends, because He is the ONLY ONE who can offer true salvation and a wonderful eternal life in His awesome and LOVING presence. 

Now let’s check out some scriptures that corroborate our Bit, beginning of course with Bruh David’s famous words from Psalm 18 – Thanksgiving for deliverance. 

‘The Lord is my rock and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler (shield), and the horn (strength) of my salvation, and my high tower (stronghold).’ (Ps.18:2) 

Oh friends, how good that makes a believer feel, knowing that the Lord God Jehovah is his strength and fortress, his shield and stronghold! Wow! It doesn’t get any better than that! How could it eh, when the Creator and Controller of the universe is your safe refuge and helps you fight your battles? 

Now hear Bruh David again from Psalm 59, another prayer for deliverance, this time when Saul sent his henchmen to watch Bruh David’s house with the definite intent to kill him. 

‘But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning: for thou hast been my defense and refuge in the day of trouble. Unto thee, O my strength, will I sing: for God is my defense, and the God of my mercy.’ (Ps.59:16-17) 

More strong proclamation of God’s power and safe keeping my brethren! And you know, until we come to that point in our Christian walk, when we can sincerely declare those things, we’ll not be taking full advantage of all that God has provided for us. 

Remember God’s basic plan for all of His people is to become as Christ-like as possible. Oh, He knows we’ll never attain to the level of Jesus, because He is God, but that doesn’t mean to say we can’t put our best foot forward and get as close as we humanly can. 

And we’ll end with this verse of encouragement from Psalm 18: ‘I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised so shall I be saved from mine enemies.’ (Ps.18:3) 

Yes friends, that’s wisdom at its zenith! So please, let’s take some time to ponder our walk with Christ today nuh, see how far along we are, and if we are making good headway, and as always, ask for God’s help. You know He’ll never refuse it. Much LOVE!

…there’s no better feeling of security…than walking under the protection of Almighty God…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 November 2016 1 Peter 4:12.

1 Peter 4:12.   Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you.

Oh my fellow believers in Jesus Christ, this morning the ole fella is pleading for mercy and forgiveness in accordance with our Christian faith. (smile) 

Ah friends, it seems like I’ve forgotten that I’m no longer a youngster, and after being out and about a fair amount yesterday, I also had a pretty late night… or morning. Thus, I was unable to get out of bed at a decent enough hour to write the Bit. 

And to make matters even worse, the arthritic bones are crying out some this Wednesday morning…. Oh for the warmth, the sunshine, salt water and LOVE of sweet Tobago! (smile) 

But not to worry, between some man-made medication and the cross of Christ, we shall overcome all our difficulties. 

And all God’s people said a loud and appreciative, ‘Praise the Lord for his goodness to the children of men!’ 

And now that I’ve gratefully received your mercy and forgiveness so graciously offered, (smile) here is something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, which I think is very appropriate for many of us in these trying times. 

It’s titled ‘Fiery Trials.’ And it says: ‘God is teaching me incredible lessons regarding growth. I see with undeniable evidence that growth means pruning, and pruning means pain. I confess, I’m actually a coward about pain. 

I certainly never pray for it. I don’t anticipate or look for it. I do only one thing. I ask God to steady me, since the Bible so clearly states that trials are a part of our lifewalk with Him. In all honesty I would prefer to escape the testing. 

I don’t like the pain of emotional trauma, which can be so overwhelming and baffling. I don’t like the deep cutting pain that goes on and on without relief. The pain of loneliness frightens me, the pain of losing someone dear to me grieves me. 

Nevertheless, I am praying for an open heart. I can’t begin to contemplate what fiery ordeals God may choose for my testing and growth, but I do long for my yieldedness to prove my willingness to be conformed to the image of His dear Son.’ 

Oh my precious people in Christ, I am sure that each one of us have thought and prayed something like that on numerous occasions when we’ve been put through our paces by Almighty God! 

No, the testing is never ever very nice, but as believers in Christ, we do need to keep an open heart and try our best to yield willingly to the trials and tribulations that come against us. We obviously don’t know the Lord’s plans for our testing, but we must also remember that He’s promised to see us successfully through each and every one. 

Please remember these great and promising words of Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.’ (Rom.8:28) 

So friends, if you are one of those called by God, and you LOVE Him, then please believe that eventually He will work everything out for your good as He has promised. 

And the promise for today’s ‘Fiery Trials’ writing is also our Bit, a scripture that we all know but DON’T LOVE! (smile) 

‘Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you.’ 

And a lot of us ask if Peter is mad or what! How can we not think it strange when those trials and tribulations suddenly come upon us, usually without any warning? 

But here is Peter’s logic as he continues after our Bit. ‘But rejoice, inasmuch as (to the extent that) ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. 

If ye be reproached (insulted) for the name of Christ, happy (blessed) are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of (blasphemed), but on your part he is glorified.’ (1 Peter 4:13-14) 

Yeh mih breddren, it is hard to accept trials, moreover to rejoice in them is extremely difficult. But please remember they are come upon us for testing, we’re being put thought fiery furnace so that we may become like Christ. 

That’s the main reason, and it follows that if we suffer in His name, then we will also be glorified when He is glorified. So please hang in there and don’t be afraid to ask the Lord for help. 

If Christ could plead for help in the Garden of Gethsemane before undergoing His fiery trial of crucifixion, so can we. But the important thing to realize is that God’s Will must always come first. 

It’s not easy, but like Jesus did it through hungry hope and strong faith in His Father, so can we with God’s ever-present help. Now let’s go home on a more positive and joyful note, as we wail our Wednesday Wail. 

Wailing… as one: ‘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!’ 

Yes friends, instead of focusing on our trials and tribulations, let’s joyfully focus instead on the wonderful future we have to look forward to with Christ! That makes much more sense. Much LOVE!

…through the fiery furnace we go…but more Christ-like we come out… 

P.S. It’s late, but great! (smile) Please keep on praying for our bubba Scotty. Much LOVE!

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 September 2016 Galatians 5:16.

Galatians 5:16.    This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

Aye mih people, another great day is ahead of us, courtesy of our wonderful God! So please, let’s use it wisely nuh, guided by the Holy Spirit of God that dwells within us. 

It’s okay to shout ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and the weekend’s here…’ and what we going to do from what we not going to do, but not if they simply relate to the lustful and dangerous pleasures of the world. 

We desperately need to have better groundings, a better foundation for the way we spend our time off, if we are going to have any kind of godly success in this crazy world of ours. And our Friday Chant provides us with that solid footing, that godly balance that we need. 

So let’s chant it nuh, with sincerity, honesty and truth, praying that it will help us do better than we’re accustomed doing. As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

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

Yeh friends, that’s a much better template for our weekends, than just wild and crazy, dissolute, leggo beast behaviour, which so many of us unfortunately indulge in when we have the couple of days off. 

That’s why Bruh Paul spent so much time warning us against just such a thing, and gave us this godly direction in our Bit. ‘This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.’ 

Yes my believing brethren, the Holy Spirit was sent to dwell within us so that we would follow it’s godly leading and direction, but first we have to stop and listen to it, otherwise we won’t know what it’s saying or where it wants to guide us. 

And the scholars explain it thus: ‘5:16. Walk in the Spirit (i.e. “live by the Spirit”): Christians are to live with the Spirit’s help. How does one “live by the Spirit”? (1) The Christian must believe that the Spirit is with him, having been sent by God into his heart (4:6). (2) In every spiritual confrontation the believer must yield to the Spirit, that is, submit his own desires to those of the Spirit. 

(3) One must depend on the Spirit for help, enabling him to lead a God-pleasing life (v.5). (4) The believer should anticipate the effects of the Spirit’s help in his daily life. The believer who “lives by the Spirit” will not fulfill (accomplish, carry out) the lust (strong desires) of the flesh (sinful desires).’  

There you have it friends, a scholarly guide as to how the Holy Spirit should operate in our lives. Oh, we know it’s not easy living a godly and spiritual life; it takes patience, perseverance, listening, sacrificing, questioning and praying, but with God’s help we can do it all. 

And why is it so difficult to lead that godly life we so ardently desire? Bruh Paul gives us some indication in the verse after our Bit. ‘For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things ye would.’ (Gal.5:17) 

Ah mih people, it can be a monumental task, a veritable war, if we’re not strong, faithful and persevering. 

Hear how the scholars tell it. ‘5:17. One’s sinful human nature (flesh) and the Holy Spirit lusteth against one another, that is, they have desires and yearnings that are contrary to one another. The Christian, then, is a battlefield, having desires to do good and evil. The outcome is that ye cannot do the things that ye would: the flesh seeks to thwart the Spirit, who, in turn, attempts to frustrate the flesh’s evil desires.’ 

Gospel truth that my people! As Bruh Paul told the Roman church in his missive to them, talking about the struggle of our two natures. ‘For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal (fleshly), sold under sin. 

For that which I do I allow (understand) not: for what I would (want to do), that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto (agree with) the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.’ (Rom.7:14-17) 

What a battlefield of life my brethren! Now listen to this important explanation of the scholars. ‘7:14. The law is spiritual: The law has the characteristics of the Spirit and is consistent with the character of God. I am carnal: What follows is autobiographical and designed to reveal the real struggle the apostle experienced in the flesh. His experience is also exemplary, for it shows the problems all believers experience in their battle with sin.’ 

So friends, if you are experiencing problems in fighting your fleshly desires, don’t beat yourself up, for it’s just a natural part of this earthly life. We will always have problems trying to be godly, even Bruh Paul had a hard time doing what he wanted to do, as per living by the Spirit. 

What we need to do is to be patient and persevering; keep on reading God’s word, studying it, meditating on it, storing it in our hearts for future use, praying, fellowshipping, and listening intently to what the Holy Spirit tells us. 

And we won’t always be successful, but our compassionate and understanding God knows our weaknesses and frailties, and once He sees us sincerely trying, that our hearts and motives are right, He will be forgiving and compassionate. So please, let’s all stand strong and steadfast in His great LOVE, mercy, compassion and grace. Much LOVE!

…fighting our carnal nature…is a full time spiritual job…

 

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