Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 June 2018 Acts 12:5.

Acts 12:5.   Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.

And then it was Friday; that magical day of the week that has us all gushing with the promise of a wonderful and relaxing weekend! 

But I don’t think the people on the Big Island of Hawaii, where the volcano has now swallowed up some 600 hundred homes, or those in Guatemala, where their volcano is starting to act up again, are thinking about a relaxing weekend. Neither are the people in Colorado where the wildfires continue spreading like wildfire. Hn! So please, let’s continue to keep them in our prayers. 

And on a note of interest, the people of the Province of Ontario here in Canada have decided to vote for change. The Progressive Conservative Party was elected with a safe majority in yesterday’s Provincial Election. Let’s hope that the change we voted for doesn’t end up worse than what we had before. 

And why you ask? Because the Leader of the party is none other than Doug Ford, the brother of the late Rob Ford, who as mayor of Toronto recently made the city the laughing stock of the world with his ‘unmayoral’ antics. Let’s hope that brother Doug is not cut from the same cloth. But remember too, that a people get the government they deserve. 

Then we have the workingman, who is more than ecstatic about the day and rejoices in song: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and soon a release from slavery! The weekend…the weekend…it’s here at last…and is it ever going to be great! Lots of wining and dining…carousing and cart wheeling! Nobody can stop we now from doing what we want to do, because now is our time. Yay! Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Ah friends, I wish we were as enthusiastic about our weekends as the workingman is about his. And there’s no reason why we should not be, it’s just that after hearing his song, our sinful nature hungers for the lack of boundaries, the licentiousness that’s open to the workingman which is not open to us as believers in Jesus Christ. (smile) 

Nonetheless, let’s enthusiastically chant our Friday Chant which states our belief. ‘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 mih people, our Leader, Jesus Christ, doesn’t want us involved in the lascivious and lustful activities of the world, that’s why He has sanctified and set us apart. Remember, we should be in the world, but not of the world. That brings us to our Bit, which is the same as yesterday. ‘Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.’ 

And if you’re wondering why, it’s because the story of Peter’s miraculous escape from prison has another part to it. Yesterday we ended where the angel left Peter in the street and he realized that the Lord had delivered him out of Herod’s deadly clutches. 

And the Good Book continues: ‘And when he had considered the thing, he came to the house of Mary the mother of John, whose surname was Mark; where many were gathered together praying. And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a damsel came to hearken (answer), named Rhoda. 

And when she knew Peter’s voice, she opened not the gate for gladness, but ran in, and told how Peter stood before the gate. And they said unto her, Thou art mad (out of your mind). But she constantly affirmed that it was even so. Then said they, It is his angel. 

But Peter continued knocking: and when they had opened the door, and saw him, they were astonished. But he, beckoning unto them with the hand to hold their peace (keep silent), declared unto them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he said, Go show these things unto James, and to the brethren. And he departed, and went into another place.’ (Acts 12:12-17) 

Ah friends, can you imagine how jittery Peter must have been waiting openly in the street, knocking with no one answering. What I want to point out in this message is what the scholars explain here. ‘12:12-16. Though the prayer of the church was fervent due to Peter’s situation (v.5), there was a deficiency in faith (vs.15-16). Evidently they did not believe God would answer in this miraculous way, or so soon.’ 

And unfortunately the same thing happens today: we pray fervently, but don’t believe wholeheartedly. But what’s the point in praying if we don’t truly believe eh friends? None whatsoever. Remember Jesus’ admonishment to the disciples after He cursed the barren fig tree and it died? ‘Therefore I say unto you, what things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.’ (Mark 11:24) 

The only corollary to that my brethren, is that whatever we pray for must be in God’s will, otherwise we won’t receive it, no matter how fervent our pray and strong our belief. So please, as individuals, as well as Christ’s body here on earth, His church, let’s ramp up our belief in our prayers nuh, because as I said yesterday, miracles are still happening each and everyday to those who sincerely believe. Much LOVE!

…you won’t get a miracle…unless you truly believe for one…


 

 


Advertisements

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 June 2018 Acts 12:5.

Acts 12:5.   Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.

Ah friends, an unusually late night produced and unusually late morning. It’s as simple as that! Oh, I was up at a fairly decent hour, but the ole bod screamed shrilly at me: ‘Sleep! I need more sleep!’ So what was I to do eh? Nothing but go back to bed and give the ole bod what it desired. Sometimes it’s wisest to do that, else it will not perform up to the level you need or want it to. 

And having said all of that, I do hope that you all are having a fine, upstanding, godly day. As for me, I’m not doing too badly, still caught up somewhat in the funk of being sick and tired a lot of the time. Oh, I know that this too shall pass with the passing of time, and I’m not overly worried about it, but it’s just handling the apparent slow passing of time. (smile) 

However when I think about the volcanic situations on Big Island in Hawaii, where the lava is slowly taking over, just razing homes to ash and rubble, and that in Guatemala, where the big bang happened all at once and many lives and much property have been lost, I consider myself blessed, in spite of my many problems; problems which pale before theirs. 

And those wildfires in Colorado and New Mexico seem to be still blazing away. So, please, let’s keep all these unfortunate people going through these unfortunate circumstances in our prayers. It’s the least we can do, as true believers. 

And in appropriate conjunction with that, here is a li’l tidbit from one of the Daily Bread Devotionals: ‘The best kind of friend is a praying friend.’ And is that ever so true my people! For since prayers are our basic means of communicating with God, it’s of the utmost importance to have someone else to talk to God on our behalf, especially when we don’t know or understand what’s happening in our own lives. 

And we have an excellent example of that in our Bit. ‘Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.’ 

Yeh friends, Herod killed James, the brother of John, and when he saw that that pleased the Jewish bigwigs, he then locked up Peter, intending to kill him after the Passover. But he did not reckon with the awesome and outstanding power of prayer, which the church unceasingly kept up on Peter’s behalf. 

The Good Book tells it thus: ‘And when Herod would have brought (was about to bring) him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains: and the keepers (guards) before the door kept the prison. And behold, the angel of the Lord came upon (stood) by him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. 

And his chains fell off from his hands. And the angel said unto him, Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals. And so he did. And he saith unto him. Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me. And he went out, and followed him; and wist (knew) not that it was true (real) which was done by the angel; but thought he saw a vision.’ (Acts 12:6-9) 

Hn, hn! Imagine that nuh, Peter didn’t even realize what was really happening, he thought that he was seeing a vision, when he was actually walking out of the jail. And the Good Book continues: ‘When they were past the first and second ward (guard posts), they came unto the iron gate that leadeth into the city; which opened to them of his own accord: and they went out, and passed on through one street; and forthwith the angel departed from him.’ (Acts 2:10) 

Now the scholars offer an interesting explanation of that verse. ‘12:10. The text implies that the guards themselves unwittingly opened the first two gates for Peter, and then through the miraculous hand of God the last gate opened of its own accord (Gr. ‘automate’) or “automatically.” And who says our God is not mighty, powerful and faithful eh? 

And the story continues: ‘And when Peter was come to himself, he said, Now I know of a surety (for certain), that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews.’ (Acts 12:11) 

Yeh friends, Peter eventually realized that a great miracle had taken place, and no doubt such faithfulness of God raised his own faithfulness to an even higher level. What I want us to realize though fellow believers, is that God still does miracles in our lives today, everyday. Please look for, and pay attention to them. 

They might not be as big and spectacular as Peter’s, but miracles are miracles, be they big or small, and we need to notice them when they happen in our own lives, for they truly raise our faith and appreciation of God’s goodness to us. Now let’s go home giving thanks for the miracles of our Thursday Blessings, which God has so generously bestowed on us. 

With sincere thanks and powerful affirmation now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

And if you truly believe all of that, then the next move is to go out and share it with others, as Jesus so greatly desires. Much LOVE!

…faithfulness to God…brings miracles from God…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 March 2018 Romans 8:31.

Romans 8:31.    What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

Ah friends, as Prince Buster, the famed Jamaican singer said in his song so long ago; ‘It was a rough night last night…’ but not in the sexual way that he meant it. (smile) I spent the night in the Toronto General Hospital in preparation for doing a heart assisted implant today, that would help the ole ticker operate more functionally than it’s currently doing. 

Everything else was okay except the bed. Chuh! These new-fangled hospital beds are so expensive and can do everything except give you a restful night’s sleep. I found it too hard to lie on and very difficult to get up from. And brother…it just kills my back! 

But there’s always a good and bad side to every story…Hn! The good side is that the Lord might have intervened miraculously on the ole fella’s behalf. Yeh friends, if the findings are true, then heavenly intervention was indeed involved. And you must be wondering what I’m being so obtuse and obscure about. (smile)

Well there seems to be something called ‘ejection fraction’ that shows how the heart is pumping the blood and my figures were low to begin with and over the past year haven’t improved a whole lot which necessitated implanting the device. 

However, yesterday, when they did the usual tests, my figures shot up so remarkably that they had to stop and review the situation. That’s why I’m talking about miracles. 

Hold down now people, hold down… there’s a new twist to the story now. I just spoke to the doctor about the surgery and they have decided to postpone it, to err on the side of caution, until they do some other tests that will give them a clearer picture. Only problem is it takes months to get that done. 

But per his reasoning, if my heart has really improved, then I should be okay. Seems though that there are two different implants for the situation and until they are sure of what’s happening it doesn’t make sense to do any surgery which could complicate matters later on. 

Ah Lord eh! When it’s not one thing, it’s certainly another. Life is always full of surprises, and who knows when they will crop up. But when you’re walking with Almighty God, He gives you the ability to handle all that comes against you. 

Hence the awesome and always encouraging words of our Bit. ‘What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?’ Not a single soul, for our God will fight them off on our behalf! 

Glory to God my fellow believers! Though He allows us to go through all sorts of stuff, ultimately, He uses everything for our good, as Bruh Paul says a few verses earlier. ‘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) We couldn’t ask for more than that. 

And furthermore, Bruh Paul clarifies our Bit by reassuring us. ‘He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?’ (Rom.8:32) Yeh friends, if the Lord went to that length to sacrifice His only Son for us, why wouldn’t He freely give us lesser things eh? None whatsoever! 

Thus, Bruh Paul continues later on: ‘Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us.’ (Rom.8:35-37) 

Oh my people, we are so blessed to have the Lord God of Hosts as our Guide and Protector, that we need nothing or no one else to advocate for us. No wonder Bruh Paul ends this remarkable chapter with these wise, wonderful and reassuring words. ‘For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, not things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the LOVE of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ (Rom.8:38-39) 

Yes precious people of God, NOTHING in this world can separate us from God’s LOVE! Why? As the scholars explain. ’38-39. We cannot be separated from God’s LOVE, because it is set forth in a person who is God Himself, Jesus Christ, our Saviour. God’s desire to redeem believers cannot be frustrated, because He is infinitely greater than any potential enemy. His plan will be realized because it is His purpose (cf. v.28).’ 

So friends, with all that reassurance let’s go home with bountiful feelings, on this rainy morning in Toronto, heartily declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In full voice now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen.’ 

Now let’s go out and do just that. Much LOVE!

…with God on our side…we should be afraid of nothing…    

P.S. Oh friends, sorry the Bit is so late, I never got to finish it at the hospital and I’m just getting home. It’s just been one of those days. Hope it makes some kind of sense. (smile) Much Love!

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 January 2018 Mark 1:35.

Mark 1:35.   And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he (Jesus) went out, and departed into a solitary (deserted) place, and there prayed.

Ah friends, it’s one of those days when you start out behind the eight ball. I went to bed fairly early, but `woke up late with my back aching like crazy. I don’t understand it nuh. The body calls for rest, but when I rest the body for any decent length of time, I wake up with more aches and pains than I went to bed with. Chuh! It’s just not right! (smile) 

Then it looks like we’re going to have a bleak snowy day with temps in the minus something or other. Steups! And to make matters worse, I happened to glimpse the weather forecast for T&T and it was projected to be plus thirty. That’s where I ought to be! 

And I’m not worried, because I know that I’ll be there at some stage of the game, but right now, the Lord in His awesome wisdom has other plans for my life in the cold weather, so I’ll just have to grin and bear it, while keeping my eyes focused on the future promise. 

Enough of my bellyaching though, here are a couple of more important things for us to concentrate on. The first is a Daily Bread Thought for the day, which says: ‘Pray your way past the urge to do wrong.’ And the second comes from the great Christian writer, Oswald Chambers, who tells us that: ‘Prayer imparts the power to walk and not faint.’ 

Both those sayings are gospel truths my brethren and wisdom of enormous proportions. Why? Because prayer is the most powerful medium on God’s great earth! It’s the direct line of communication with the Creator of the universe! It couldn’t get any better than that. 

Our problem is that we either refuse to pray, are afraid to pray, or pray for the wrong things, and when we don’t get them, we get discouraged and curse God and give up on Him. But remember God never promised to answer every prayer right away. He answers them in His own time and if they fit the direction He wants us to go. 

Oh friends, prayer is possibly the most important aspect of a believer’s life. Because that’ how we communicate with Almighty God. Look at Jesus, who though He was God Himself, still chose to live His earthly life through strong and consistent communication with His heavenly Father. 

As the Good Book says in our Bit: ‘And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he (Jesus) went out, and departed into a solitary (deserted) place, and there prayed.’ He never made important decisions without consulting the Father. 

Apparently on that occasion He was considering whether to continue preaching the gospel as the focal point of His ministry, which wasn’t being received too well, or to focus on the miracles aspects, which the people were lapping up. But He never left the Father out of His deliberations. And most important He ALWAYS made time to do it. 

We claim to be too busy to talk our Creator, which in reality friends is nonsense.  We find or make time to do every other worldly thing that seems important to us though. Whether we make time or not, just goes to show how important we consider communicating with the Father is to us. 

But friends, if we want to have good communication with God, we have to make time to talk to Him, regardless of what else is happening in our lives. Look at Jesus again. After He fed the five thousand with the five loaves and two fishes, (Matt.14:15-21), He sent the disciples away on a ship over the lake. 

‘And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart (by himself) to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.’ (Matt.14:23) Yuh see friends, Jesus MADE TIME to be with God. Look at this other example of Jesus’ full prayer life. This happened just before He chose the 12 disciples. 

‘And it came to pass in those days, that he (Jesus) went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom he also named apostles.’ (Luke 6:12-13) Another example of Jesus consulting His Father before making big decisions. 

But friends, the Lord doesn’t only want us to communicate with Him on big decisions, but on ALL decisions, be they big or small. That means He desires to be an integral part of our everyday lives. Whatever we’re doing, He wants to be involved in it. 

That’s why Bruh Paul in his writings talks about praying always, (Eph.6:18); praying without ceasing (1 Thess.5:17); and praying everywhere (1 Tim.2:8) The Lord wants to be in constant contact with us, and prayer is how He does it. So let’s be wise and MAKE TIME to communicate with Him nuh. It’s for our benefit, not His. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, a prayer that shows how connected we are with our God, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. In one strong and sincere voice now: ‘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!’ 

And yuh know what friends, our puny minds can’t even begin to comprehend the future that really awaits us. We know it’s going to be glorious, but just how glorious, we have no true idea. But hang in there, and we’ll find out eventually. Much LOVE!

…eye hath not seen…nor ear heard…neither have entered into the heart of man…the things which God hath prepared…for them that LOVE him… (1 Cor.2:9)

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 October 2017 Psalm 37:7a.

Psalm 37:7a.   Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: 

Ah friends, it’s a gloriously wet fall morning in my neighbourhood! The fallen leaves are all plastered to the ground, wet and soggy. And surprisingly, many of the trees still have lots of green leaves, because the chilly fall weather has not hit us continuously as yet. 

Most of the days are still fairly warm, shirt-sleeved affairs. But it’s coming…eventually all those leaves will fall to their winter demise. 

And it seems that both my computer and I have been negatively affected by the inclement weather. For the last ten minutes or so my trusty machine has been rumbling along doing its own thing, with very slow response to my commands. 

I know it gives me a couple moments of grief every time I turn it on, but today’s spell seemed rather long. I am also a tad under the weather, just a tad though, (smile) possibly because of a late night early morning scenario. 

And all I can say is that the Lord is testing me even before I write, as I contemplate writing something on patience. But that’s a customary occurrence; either before or after I write, I get tested on whatever I’ve written, so I can’t really complain. 

Anyway, here is what I want to write about patience. It comes from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr.Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional, and most likely I’ve shared it before, but we still need reminders on certain topics every so often, throughout our earthly days. 

And Gramps Schuller puts it this way. ‘Be patient; God is working everything out. At the right time and in the right way everything will evolve beautifully. Don’t try to rush God. Mountains don’t move overnight. Give God time to work His miracles. 

I have seen God dissolve resentments, resolve frustrations, fill lonely hearts with new LOVE, and wash away hurts like a new wave washes away scars on sand scratched by children’s sticks. God can get you out of a rut, onto a new road, and over the mountain that seemed impassable, if you will be patient.’ 

And all of that is ever so true my believing friends! God can move mountains immediately, if He so desires, but that will just totally spoil us and we’ll learn nothing from the experience. We would’t grow and become the true image of Christ if God just spoon-fed us all the time. 

He didn’t spoon feed His wonderful sinless son Jesus during His earthly sojourn, so why do it with us sinful ingrates eh? We’d just become more sinful, rebellious and less grateful, if that’s at all possible. 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him:’ Oh, I know the verse contains more than that that, but right now we’re only concerned with the patient aspect of it. And waiting patiently on our God, is one of the best moves we can ever make in this life my brethren. 

Now after making that poignant statement in Psalm 37 – The true state of the wicked – Bruh David comes back in Psalm 40 – Praise for answered prayer – and joyfully proclaims: ‘ I waited patiently for the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. 

He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord.’ (Ps.40:1-3) 

Yes friends, we are amongst the many who have seen Bruh David’s faith, trust, and patient waiting on the Lord, and how he eventually exalted him. Remember it was several years and many heart-rending trials and tribulations between the time that Samuel anointed him as the next king of Israel, before he actually ascended to the throne. 

And even more importantly, those trials and tribulations were what made him the good king and leader that He was. For as Bruh Paul so rightly said to the Romans in his talk on the results of justification. 

‘And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also; knowing that tribulation worketh patience (produces perseverance); and patience, experience (character); and experience hope.’ (Rom.5:3-4) 

Yes my fellow believers, patience is not only waiting, but also persevering, keeping keeping on during the struggles, because that’s when and how we build character. And we see it all exemplified in the life of Bruh David. 

Now note Bruh David wasn’t perfect, he had his wrongdoing too, for which he paid dearly, but overall he stuck as closely as possible with the Lord, enduring the slings and arrows that came upon him with the Lord’s help. 

Likewise my faithful brethren, if we stick closely with our God, don’t complain too much through the rough times and keep doing His will, He will eventually bring us out much better on the other side. 

And don’t think that I’m just talking for talk sake, because right now I am going through the biggest test of faith in my life with a host of medical problems. So I am also in the process of learning to wait patiently on the Lord and to persevere with a good attitude while waiting with hope and joy for my eventual breakthrough. 

And now, as true Christian soldiers, let’s go home proudly declaring our Wednesday Wail. ‘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!’ 

Wow friends! Believe me, our God is a great and good and ever-faithful God, please put your total trust in Him. It will be the best decision you ever make! Much Love!

…belief…surrender…trust… patience…and a topping of LOVE…the Christian’s way to glory…

P.S. Yes, it’s long and late, but I like it. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 August 2017 Matthew 9:29b.

Matthew 9:29b.   According to you faith be it unto you.

Well friends, it’s  Tuesday. Were any of you lucky enough to see the mercurial eclipse yesterday? I wasn’t. But it seems like the most powerful man in the world thought he was powerful enough to view it without the special glasses recommended. (smile) 

But that’s what he’s all about ego and power. Enough of the tongue in cheek stuff though. Here is something to help us face the day successfully, from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional, titled, ‘A Prayer for Solutions.’ 

Please pray with me. ‘Lord, thanks for assuring me that you’ll solve the problems if I’ll exercise the faith and make the right decision! Forgive me for waiting for all difficulties, real or fanciful, to be resolved before deciding to make my commitment. 

I confess I have too often allowed problems instead of possibilities to take over leadership of my life – to make my decisions – and take command over my destiny. I know, now, what faith is, Lord! It’s making the right decisions before I see solutions to all problems! Increase my faith! Amen.’ 

Now have we been guilty of that kind of thing? I’m sure all of us have at some time or another. And what’s the first right decision we’re always supposed to make? Turning to God with the problem! 

Yeh friends, whether the problem be big or small, hard or simple, the Lord God Almighty IS ALWAYS THE FIRST ONE we should talk to about it, for He is the Master Problem Solver. Have the faith to let Him direct our steps. 

And what did Jesus say unto the two blind men who wanted him to heal them. ‘Believe ye that I am able to do this? They said unto him, Yea Lord. Then touched he their eyes, saying, According to your faith be it unto you. And their eyes were opened…’ (Matt.9:28-30) 

Yes my brethren, our Bit says it all! Our power and blessedness will be defined by the maturity and strength of our faith, for Christianity is a faith-based organization. 

What does Hebrews say about the subject? ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb.11:6) 

And there was nobody who had more faith, or gave us a better example of it, than Jesus, for though He was God in the flesh, He never took credit for anything, but always deferred to the Father. 

Even as a youth, when He strayed from His parents in Jerusalem, when they finally found Him debating with the elders in the temple, His words to them were: ‘How is it that ye sought me? wist (knew) ye not that I must be about my father’s business? And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.’ (Luke 2:49-50) 

And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘2:49. Wist ye not or “Did you not realize?” There is a certain tension between Jesus’ responsibility to parents on the one hand and to His heavenly Father on the other.’ 

Though He was somewhat rude to His earthly parents with that answer, Jesus clearly showed from early on that His heavenly Father’s business was NUMBER ONE! 

And when the Jews tried to tell Him He had a devil (demon spirit), He bluntly answered. ‘I have not a devil (demon spirit): but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me.’ (John 8:49) 

And later on when they asked if he was greater than Abraham and the prophets, His answer was: ‘If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me…’ (John 8:54) Yuh see mih breddren, with Jesus, it was all about the Father. And so should it be with us. 

Hear Him once more: ‘For I have not spoken of myself (my own authority), but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore; even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.’ (John 12:49-50) 

And whom did Jesus turn to in His time of greatest sorrow? The Father! That memorable night in the Garden of Gethsemane, where He fell on His face and prayed: ‘O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.’ (Matt.26:39) 

Even in His most fervent prayer, Jesus still acknowledged that His journey would be led by the Father’s will, not His. 

And finally, here is this episode from Mark which really shows Jesus’ strong, steady and faithful connection to His heavenly Father. ‘And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary (deserted) place, and there prayed.’ (Mark 1:35) 

The scholars then tell us: 1:35. Mark emphasizes that it was a great while before day. Showing that Jesus began each day of His earthly ministry with prayer is only the secondary intention of this verse. The primary aim is to show how Jesus made important decisions: by earnest, persistent prayer. 

Here Jesus stands at the crossroads of decision: His first year of public preaching (vs. 9-20) has borne little visible fruit. But His miracles of healing are drawing huge crowds (vs.31-32) and bringing Him recognition (v.28). 

So the question is whether He should continue to put the stress of His ministry on the preaching of the gospel for the healing of man’s diseased soul, or place the stress of His work on the more popular performing of miracles for the healing of man’s body. To make the proper choice, He seeks by prayer the Father’s wisdom.’  

And He certainly received the right answer: place the stress on healing our sinful souls! All praise and thanks to God for filling Him with that heavenly wisdom! Otherwise our bodies would have been healed, but our souls would still have been bound for Hades. 

Now let’s go home, safe and secure in the knowledge of our Tuesday Mantra, as we declare it loudly, proudly and sincerely. ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

And if you truly believe it, then let’s go out and do it nuh! Much LOVE!

…if Jesus made it a point to first talk to the Father…then why shouldn’t we lesser mortals do the same eh…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 July 2017 Psalm 95:6.

Psalm 95:6.    O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.

Oh Glory to God my fellow believers for blessing us with another bountiful day on Planet Earth! And also for giving us the wonderful privilege of being able to gather together, in His sanctuary this Sabbath Sunday morning, to praise and worship Him and to hear His awesome word, which, as its truth seeps into our hearts and souls will strengthen us, by giving us His mercy, grace and guidance to face the upcoming week! 

What a wonderful God we serve and worship my people! Every day He gives me greater reason to make that declaration. And when I reached out for a song of praise and worship for us to sing today, I just felt like getting closer to our Maker, hence this old hymn, ‘Nearer My God to Thee,’ written in the 19th century by Sarah Adams. 

It is based on the topic of loyalty and the scriptures of Genesis 28:11-13, when God spoke to Jacob at Bethel and promised to make his progeny abundant and prosperous. It’s also based on Psalm 42:2: – An intense longing for God. ‘My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before him.’ 

Therefore friends, this morning, if our souls indeed thirst for the living God, then let’s offer the sacrifice of praise from our lips, as we endeavour to get closer, or as close as we can get to Him on this our earthly journey. So in full voice, in unison and perfect harmony, let’s sing! ‘Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee! E’en though it be a cross that raiseth me, Still all my song shall be, nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain: Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee!) 

Though like the wanderer, the sun gone down, Darkness be over me, my rest a stone; Yet in my dreams I’d be nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain) There let the way appear, steps unto Heav’n; All that Thou sendest me, in mercy giv’n; Angels to beckon me nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain) Then, with my waking thoughts bright with Thy praise, Out of my stony griefs Bethel I’ll raise; So by my woes to be nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain) 

Or, if on joyful wing cleaving the sky, Sun, moon, and stars forgot, upward I’ll fly, Still all my song shall be, nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain) There in my Father’s home, safe and at rest, There in my Savior’s love, perfectly blest; Age after age to be nearer, my God, to Thee. Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee! Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee!’ 

Oh faithful saints of Christ, that was marvellous! And as we sang, one could feel the strong and beautiful presence of God in His house! The heartfelt feelings were so sincere that He had no choice but to grace us with His Holy presence! 

Now let’s continue in that same vein; the sincere seeking and longing for and getting closer to God by invoking the glorious words and advice of our Bit. ‘O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.’ That’s the ultimate act my brethren; coming before the Lord in sincere, heartfelt prayer! Why, you ask? 

Listen as the psalmist explains after our Bit. ‘For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand (under His care). (Ps.95:7a) There could be no better reason than that friends: we are beholden to our great and wonderful God in each and every aspect of our lives! We are His people, and He cares for us, both in LOVE and by providing our earthly needs every day. 

But then the psalmist does something strange; he pleads with us: ‘Today if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your heart, as in the provocation (rebellion); and as in the day of temptation (trial or testing) in the wilderness. When your fathers tempted (tried) me, proved me, and saw my work.’(Ps.95:7b-9) 

Now why would anyone in their right mind, rebel against God and try to test Him eh? Especially after they had seen the wonderful miracles he had performed on their behalf while bringing them out of four hundred years of bondage in Egypt? Only a people mad with lustful desires of the flesh, egged on by Lucifer could be so obtuse as to rebel against their maker. 

Consequently, the psalmist, speaking on God’s behalf, continues: ‘Forty years long was I grieved with (disgusted with) this generation, and said, It is a people that do err (go astray) in their heart, and they have not known my ways: Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest.’ (Ps.95:10-11) And God fulfilled His promised, when only Caleb and Joshua of all those who had left Egypt, set foot in the Promised Land. 

For forty years the Israelites wandered aimlessly in the desert because of their disobedience to Almighty God. And friends, it just boggles my imagination that they could be so stupid after seeing all the miracles of God! No other group of people, to this day, has seen God work so miraculously on their behalf. Just the parting of the Red Sea should have been enough to convince them forever. 

However friends, they saw it and didn’t believe, we didn’t see it, but let’s be wise nuh; let’s believe and be obedient, otherwise we will not enter into God’s rest. And let these words of Jesus to His doubting disciple Thomas, be a sure promise to us. ‘Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.’(John 20:29) 

Words of absolute wisdom my brethren! Words to wisely and confidently live by! Much LOVE!

…true faith in Jesus…means…believing…without…or before seeing…

 

 

 

Previous Older Entries