Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 June 2017 Mark 13:13.

Mark 13:13.    And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure (bear patiently, be persistent) unto the end, the same shall be saved.

And then it was Saturday mih breddren; a day for lazing around for some lucky ones, while others will be forced to do household chores ignored during the week, or go grocery shopping… 

Chuh! It’s always something eh? Whatever happened to the glorious promises that technological innovation would make our lives easier eh? Our lives are busier than they ever were! Yes we have much more stuff, but we also have much more stuff to look after. Anyway friends, there’s no need to worry, for it’s all under God’s mighty and wise control! Glory to Him in the highest! 

But it’s Saturday, so let’s check out some of our friend Anselm’s quotes for this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow.  Hear this first one: ‘Be congruent (in harmony, together), be authentic, be your true self. Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.’ 

Ah friends, that’s how we ought to be, but in these fraudulent, selfish times, too many people are not their true selves, they are two-faced for whatever reason, thus they cannot live in harmony with themselves.  

And then there’s this one: ‘See the good in people and help them. I look only to the good qualities of men. Not being faultless myself, I won’t presume to probe into the faults of others.’ That’s a very good philosophy my people. We should always look for the good in others, but in these current times, we still need to be very careful about whom we let into our private space.  

Now listen to this quote: ‘Take care of this moment. I do not want to foresee the future. I am concerned with taking care of the present. God has given me no control over the moment following.’ Much truth lies in that. Jesus said that if we sought the kingdom of God and His righteousness, all we needed to lead a good life would be provided. 

Then He concluded: ‘Take therefore no thought for the morrow (do not worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:34) That simply means that every day will take care of itself if you are living under the umbrella of the heavenly Father. 

And I like this last quote. ‘Persist. First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.’ Yes, precious people of God,, there’s an awful lot to be said about persistence. It will get us through the most agonizing and harrowing experiences or situations when nothing else will. 

And we have one of the best examples of that in our Bit. ‘And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure (bear patiently, be persistent) unto the end, the same shall be saved.’ 

Ah friends, those are the words of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, expressed in the course of telling His disciples about the signs for the end times. Please note that those who shall be saved, are those who endure, persist, have the patience, the belly and backbone to stand up until the end, against all the evil and unjust stuff that will come against believers. 

And we are seeing a lot of that stuff happening nowadays my fellow believers, which means we have to band our bellies and stand strong and steadfast in Jesus’ name, if we want to see the kingdom of heaven. We can’t afford to fall down, give up, and whimper out in fear now. This is the most crucial time in our history; a time when the sheep will be separated from the goats. The sheep will follow Jesus, while the goats will lust for Beelzebub. 

And we will invoke the eternal wisdom of the author of the Hebrews. Hear this classic verse. ‘Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance, endurance) the race that is set before us.’ (Heb.12:1) 

What a magnificent verse of scripture that is my brethren! So strong that it ought to light a fire under us in these end times! We need lots of patience, perseverance and endurance my people if we’re going to fight the good fight for Christ! 

And to boost our spirits and courage at this stage of the game, please listen to Jesus’ promise as told by Luke. ‘And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake. But there shall not a hair of your head perish. In your patience possess ye your souls.’ (Luke 21:17-19) 

What a promise mih people! Not a hair on our heads will perish if we stand up strong under the persecution that will come against us. Wow! And we all know that Jesus is ever-faithful to keep ALL of His promises. So please hold on strong, stand in unity, because together we’re much stronger than apart. 

Let’s raise up Christ’s church as we’re supposed to nuh. This is the time when all Christians must come together, regardless of colour, class, creed or race. Let’s do it for Jesus. It’s the least we can do for all that He’s done for us. Much LOVE!

…stand up…stand up for Jesus…the trumpet call obey…till every foe is vanquished…and Christ is Lord indeed…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 1 Samuel 30:6b.     ‘…but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.’

And then it was Saturday; the day for household chores and grocery shopping for some, while for others it’s just a lazy, lying around day, doing nothing much of anything. For those blessed to be living in tropical climes, it might be a picnic or some outdoor sport or just lying in a hammock below a shade tree.  

Or if you’re in Tobago, you might just be getting ready to go up Calder Hall and get some of Brother Kirby’s rich, tantalizing and nutritious soups. That would certainly go down well on this chilly Saturday morning. How lucky can some people get eh? (smile) 

But not so in these northern parts, since it’s too cold for the usual outdoor sports and picnics, while it’s not cold enough to go skiing or outdoor skating. But to his each his own; all of us have different agendas and timelines, so let us do whatever we need to do, with God uppermost in our hearts and minds. 

And on that note, let me share with you a rather wise offering this past week from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us. Listen up, as he advises: ‘Compare yourself with yourself. Not with others. Comparing what you have and your results to what other people have and have accomplished can really kill your motivation. There are always people ahead of you. Most likely quite a bit of people. And a few of them are miles ahead. So focus on you. On your results. And how you can and have improved them.’ 

Words of absolute wisdom my people! The worse thing we can ever do is compare ourselves with others. We all know about keeping up with the Joneses, which is a real killer in terms of physical wealth and material lifestyle. But it’s even worse when we try to compare our personal accomplishments with those of others, even those in like fields and professions because the playing fields are never level, are never the same. 

Some start out with a gold spoon in their mouths, some with silver, others with brass, and many with no spoon at all. So comparisons are seldom ever oranges with oranges, but oranges with different fruit. It never pays to measure your accomplishment with others, because more often than not we fall short of the other person’s attainment and then get discouraged, jealous and even angry, which doesn’t help us any. 

Then on the odd occasion when our accomplishment is better than others, we’re liable to look down on them with pride, conceit and contempt. That doesn’t help us either friends. The truth is that others will always be both ahead and behind us in accomplishments, and comparisons on either end will only bring us negative results. 

So as Anselm advises, if we so badly want to compare, let’s compare ourselves with our selves; take stock of our own accomplishments as we grow and mature. We have all the right tools at hand to measure ourselves against ourselves, but not against other people.  

That finally brings us to our Bit: ‘but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.’ Oh friends, what a potent piece of scripture in only a few words. 

Hear the story: Bruh David is running from Saul, whose avowed intention is to kill him. On this particular instance he’s living in Philistine territory in a place called Ziklag. The Philistines are preparing to make war against Saul and Israel and Bruh David goes with his rag tag band of men to help. But the Philistine counsellors distrust him, so they send him back to Ziklag. (1 Sam.29) 

Lo and behold though, three days later when they get to Ziklag, they discover that during their absence the Amalekites have invaded the city and burned it to the ground. The really sad part though was that all their families had been taken away captive. The Good Book tells us that ‘Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep.’ (1 Sam.30:4) 

Then, though it didn’t seem possible, things got even worse: ‘And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved (bitter), every man for his sons and for his daughters.’ (1 Sam.30:6a) It didn’t matter to them that Bruh David’s two wives had also been taken captive; they were just concerned about their own families. At those times the innate selfishness of man usually comes to the fore. 

And that’s where our Bit comes in: ‘but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.’ Ah friends, what a moving and powerful scripture. It’s something that we should all remember and keep deep in our hearts, for when circumstances come against us and there’s no man to stand with us, then we need to encourage ourselves in our God, for He has promised never to leave nor forsake us even when things hit rock bottom. 

That brings to mind another instance of the Lord’s providence, this one with Bruh Paul. As he says to Timothy: ‘At my first answer (defense) no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge. Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.’ (2 Tim.4:16-17) 

Yes friends, there will be times when everything and everyone will seem to be against us, but that is not the time to give up. Instead, that’s the time for us to encourage ourselves in the Lord, to remember all His promises and the good things He’s done for us in the past and call upon Him with strong, expectant faith and hungry hope, knowing that He will not disappoint us, will never leave us in the lurch. 

Now I know it all sounds fine in theory, and looks good on paper in black and white, but when push really comes to shove, it’s a horse of a different colour. That’s why we need to do our utmost to build our faith in Almighty God, because it’s only with real strong faith can we handle those situations, and not be totally overwhelmed by them. 

More on this tomorrow friends, the Lord in favour. Till then let’s stand strong in our faith and keep looking to Christ for all our needs. He will meet them all. Much LOVE!

…only the powerful arms of Christ…can lift us from the very depths of despair…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 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.

Aye friends, that wonderful day called Monday, has rolled around again! Wow! 

Are you excited enough to joyfully declare: ‘TGIM! Thank God it’s Monday! Thank God that I will be able to get out of this drudgery of housework, or of just lazing around and doing nothing constructive, and instead go out and meet people, and help bring them to Jesus and His saving grace!’

Oh my people, if you can truthfully declare that prayer this Monday morning, then you’re amongst a very few blessed souls.  And may the Lord bless you and give you your heart’s desire. That’s because most of us will be moaning and groaning and cussing and complaining about how we so tired, and how the weekend finish so quick, and we just might call in sick. 

But don’t worry my brethren, we have an antidote for the Monday Morning Blues, it’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. So without further ado, let’s get right into it so our spirits can be lifted and our attitudes become more Christ like. (smile) 

Altogether now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Oh that was good friends; better than average! It even brought a trace of a smile to Jesus, our choirmaster’s face. Now let’s keep our adrenaline fuelled motors running and get out there and live our lives for Jesus. That’s all He asks of us. 

And to help us do that, let’s turn to our current Bit for the last time. ‘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 wonderful promise of Almighty God to lay before unbelievers when we witness to them! They can be assured that whatever their sins might be – a li’l white lie or genocide – if they seek God with sincere confession and repentance their iniquity will be washed away. 

Bruh David puts it thus in Psalm 103 – Thanksgiving for God’s mercy. ‘The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous (abounding) in mercy (LOVING-kindness). He will not always chide (strive): neither will he keep his anger forever. He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. 

For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy (LOVING-kindness) toward them that fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.’ (Ps.103:8-12)  

And all God’s people declared a loud and proud:’ Glory to God for His LOVING-kindness to the undeserving children of men!’ And that He certainly is my brethren! 

Now let’s turn to a couple of other scriptures which corroborate our Bit. Listen to Nehemiah when he hears that Jerusalem is a waste land. He fasts, prays, confesses the sins of his people, and asks for guidance. 

‘We have dealt (acted) very corruptly against thee, and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, not the judgements (ordinances), which thou commandedst thy servant Moses. Remember, I beseech thee, the word that thou commandedst thy servant Moses, saying, If ye transgress (are unfaithful), I will scatter you abroad among the nations. 

But if ye turn unto me, and keep my commandments, and do them; though they were of you cast out unto the uttermost part of the heaven, yet will I gather them from thence, and will bring them unto the place that I have chosen to set my name there (as a dwelling for my name).’ (Neh.1:7-9) 

Yes friends, that’s the beauty of worshipping our great and awesome God; we can remind Him of His promises when we fulfill the requirements! And we’ll end with these glorious words of Hosea – Israel’s reply to God’s admonishment. 

‘Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten (stricken), and he will bind (bandage) us up. After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight. 

Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord (let us pursue the knowledge of the Lord): his going forth is prepared (established) as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.’ (Hos.6:1-3) 

Yes my faithful brethren, regardless of the nature of our sins, sincere confession and repentance will bring forgiveness. Just remember that the Lord looks at our hearts, so mere words will not fool Him. Much LOVE!

…heartfelt confession…plus sincere repentance…equals graceful and merciful forgiveness…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 December 2015 Hosea 4:6

Hosea 4:6.   My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

Ah mih Friends, that much dreaded, but should be much LOVED day is here again. (smile) It’s Monday my people! Rise and shine and give some thanks and praise and glory to our heavenly Father for bringing us safely through the dark night into the blazing light of the Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

And please don’t waste too much time grumbling and complaining, because He is eagerly waiting for us to join Him at the forefront of the battle. Like all good leaders, He is showing the way, getting right into the heat of battle with us. So please don’t procrastinate, for time is of the essence.  

Yes friends, time is certainly important; we’ve only been granted so much, so we can’t afford to waste it by lazing around and indulging in selfish lusts. And as always, to help us get up and over the Monday morning hump, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle hymn with much jump and joy nuh. 

As one earthly, but heavenly sounding choir now, let’s sing. ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Oh what an awesome rendition my brethren! Jesus was jumping and jiving with us as He swung His conductor’s baton with that light and airy touch that He alone possesses! Wow! All of heaven was also singing along, including the Father! Mama Mia! 

So with that adrenalin coursing through our bodies now, let’s get ourselves together and head into the evil world and show them, what it truly means to be a Christian, a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ! Oh glory to God! 

Ah mih people, much to my surprise, the ole fella is really enthused this morning. I am being carried away by own rhetoric! (smile) Hope it rubs off on you too. But that’s what is possible when you put your faith, hope, belief and trust in Jesus! Your spirit is lifted and you are able to do incredible things in His name. 

And what we desperately need to do today is get out into the world and begin changing the Lord’s opinion of us in the Bit. For remember it applies to our current society even more than it did to the Israelites. 

‘My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.‘  

Oh how sad that that’s the Lord’s impression of our society! And we have no one to blame but ourselves. So without further ado, let’s get into some scripture that verify our Bit. Listen to the great prophet Isaiah as he talks about the woes promised to and pronounced on the faithless. 

‘Therefore my people are gone into captivity, because they have no knowledge: and their honourable men are famished, and their multitude dried up with thirst. Therefore hell (Sheol) hath enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure: and their glory, and their multitude, and their pomp, and he that rejoiceth, shall descend into it. 

And the mean man (people) shall be brought down, and the mighty man (each man) shall be humbled, and the eyes of the lofty shall be humbled. But the Lord of hosts shall be exalted in judgement, and God that is holy shall be sanctified in righteousness (hallowed).’( Is.5:13-16)  

Yes Friends, we can see that happening already. Honourable people are having a hard time existing in this sinful society, and there is a lot of hunger, poverty, inhumanity and starvation. But have no fear, the Lord and His people WILL win out in the end! 

Now let’s go home with some more encouraging words from Peter, as he talks about growing in grace. ‘And beside this (but also for this very reason), giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance (self-control); and to temperance patience (perseverance); and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness charity (LOVE). 

For if these things be in you (are yours), and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren (useless) nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off (is short-sighted), and hath forgotten that he was purged (cleansed) from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure; for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall (stumble).’ (2 Pet.1:5-10) 

And the scholars offer these explanations: ‘1:5-7. In this section Peter urges his readers to grow to spiritual maturity. Add to your faith indicates the areas of growth that follow after salvation. Virtue is moral excellence. Knowledge is spiritual truth. Temperance is self-control. Patience is endurance. Godliness is God-likeness. Brotherly kindness (Gr. philadelphian) is brotherly LOVE. Charity (Gr. agapen) is volitional LOVE. This process is a lifelong cycle of spiritual growth for all believers.’  

There you have it Friends and neighbours, the wisdom of heaven! So let’s go out and practice it nuh, so that we can never fall, never fail in our Christian living. Much LOVE!

…he that hath ears to hear…let him hear…for disobedience will be catastrophic…