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…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

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

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

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

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

Now that’s the song of the heathen, let’s sing that of the righteous; our Friday Chant, with as much, if not more verve and enthusiasm than the heathen. All together now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

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

Yeh friends, that’s a much better way of handling the weekend, than simply giving into the lusts of the flesh and celebrating with gay abandon. 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 November 2015 Matthew 24:3‏

Matthew 24:3.   And as he sat upon the Mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world (age)?

Oh Friends, oh Friends, it’s Tuesday – all day too! (smile) And yuh see how, with God’s help, you made it through Monday without any real worries or anxieties? 

Well the same thing is also applicable to Tuesday. All you need to do is sincerely invoke God’s help, and He will give you the wherewithal to face down whatever you are facing, and come up over your problems. 

Wow! All glory and honour to the great, to the magnificent God we serve and worship! I truly don’t understand how so many people can believe that they can function successfully without Him in their lives nuh. 

Anyway, since today is Tuesday, it means that we should declare our Tuesday Mantra, or what’s otherwise known as ‘The Creed of the Beloved.’ 

Altogether 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.’ 

Oh glory to God my people! As Christians, as children of God and Friends of Jesus we have the best thing going in this whole wide world! Absolutely no need to worry or hurry! 

Unfortunately though, not enough of us fully appreciate and enjoy it, otherwise we’d all be much happier and our world would not be in such a sad state of strife, distrust and deterioration. 

Ah Lord eh! Just thinking about the recent Paris attacks, the Lebanon debacle, and the violence that’s fomenting in Israel… and we’re not even including the Syrian Civil war, or the Isis nonsense… we certainly are in a time of serious danger and difficulty. 

If the strife isn’t soon abated, then it’s very liable to blow up into a big inferno that engulfs the whole world. And believe me friends, if we think the last world wars were terrible, I believe this next one is going to take the cake, since there are so many more dangerous weapons around and much better methods of spreading them. 

That brings us to our Bit. ‘And as he sat upon the Mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world (age)? 

Now yesterday we read the beginning of Jesus’ answer to His disciples, where he talked about all the wars and rumours of wars, the pestilence, earthquakes and famines that will happen in various places. 

And all of that stuff is definitely happening in our world right now. Sadly though Jesus said that was just the beginning of the end. Can you then imagine what the real end will be like? I hesitate to even think about it. 

Now let’s continue with Jesus’ monologue, or what is called the Olivet Discourse, as it was delivered on the Mount of Olives (Olivet). ‘All these are the beginnings of sorrows (birth pangs). Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted (to tribulation), and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my sake. 

And then shall many be offended, and betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall arise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity (lawlessness) shall abound, the LOVE of many shall wax (grow) cold.’ Matt.24:8-12) 

Oh my fellow believers, doesn’t it just seem as though Jesus is sitting on a hilltop somewhere today, talking about all the negative stuff that’s currently happening in our world? It certainly does! Beside the strife that we’ve already talked about, the persecution of Christians and the hatred that’s now been directed at them simply because of their belief and faith and trust in Jesus Christ is appalling. 

Have you ever noticed though, that no other word in any language at all, seems to stir up such torrid emotions than the single, solitary name of ‘JESUS.’ Hn! It must then be a very powerful name indeed! 

In general too, betrayals and hatred are on the upswing. And don’t talk about false prophets… there are so many of them around that one has to be very, very careful whom you listen to and follow. 

The same goes for iniquity and lawlessness. Sin is now so rampant and official by man’s standards, that unless you have a good knowledge of God’s Word, you’ll find it extremely difficult to know what’s right from wrong. 

And obviously from all those negative circumstances will flow the terrible lack of LOVE that’s now so prominent in our world. The words of the old song: ‘What the world needs now, is LOVE, sweet LOVE,’ have never been as true or as necessary. 

However my precious people, my fellow believers, as always, our Lord and Saviour has provided a way out for us, ever faithful to His promises to never leave nor forsake us. Listen to His solemn words. ‘But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.’ (Matt.24:13) 

Oh glory to the Lamb of God, who is so worthy of our praise and adoration! Yes Friends, if we stand strong and steadfast, holding securely and sincerely to Jesus during these rough and unpredictable times, we WILL be saved in the end! 

That’s a promise of Jesus, and so far he has never reneged on one of them, so why will He now eh? No reason whatsoever my brethren! 

So with all of that in mind, let’s continue reading and studying and meditating on God’s Word, so that we will know right from wrong and receive strength for our faith. Let’s also continue to meet and fellowship regularly with other believers, encouraging and edifying each other so that we are able to withstand the flaming arrows of the enemy. 

As Bruh Paul so wisely advised the Ephesians. ‘Wherefore take unto you (put on) the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.’ (Eph.6:13) 

Yes Friends, that is indeed the wisdom of all wisdom! Much LOVE!

…there’s no name in the world as powerful as…JESUS…to whom all heads will bow…and all knees will bend…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 September 2014 Romans 10:13

Romans 10:13.   For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

 Halfway home Friends, yes we halfway home this Wednesday morning! So please, just hang in there by standing strong in faith and steadfastly focusing on our Lord and Saviour, the Prince of Peace, our Emmanuel, our Advocate, our High Priest and Great Redeemer! 
 
And we all know that to be Jesus Christ – the ONE and ONLY SUPERSTAR in this great universe; the ONE who looks after all our needs!
 
So let’s take courage and continue to sincerely LOVE our God; faithfully LIVE our lives as He desires, and SPREAD His true and holy Word, so that others can hear it and also come to salvation and eternal life.
 
And my brethren, just in case you’ve forgotten, or are simply taking it for granted, please remember that Jesus is the magnificent embodiment of the Word, the Way, the Truth and the Life! NOBODY comes to the Father but THROUGH HIM!
 
Now having set the stage, let’s get on with the drama, (smile) our Bit: ‘For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’
 
Ah Friends, what a very poignant, powerful and encouraging scripture!
 
There, Bruh Paul is quoting the prophet Joel, just as Peter does in his most moving sermon on the day of Pentecost, (Acts 2:21) when the Holy Spirit came to earth to indwell ALL believers from that time henceforth.
 
Joel says it thus: ‘And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered (saved): for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance (salvation), as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call. (Joel 2:32)
 
Now here’s a note the scholars’ have posted, re our Bit. ’10:13. Whosoever: As chapter 9 stressed divine sovereignty in salvation, this passage stresses the human responsibility. Scripture does not view these two principles as paradoxical or contradictory, but as mutually compatible truths.’
 
And why should they be incompatible eh, since salvation is of, or comes from the Lord, while accessing it is a human responsibility?
 
Anyway my fellow believers, though it’s all well and good to have people call upon God’s name and be saved, there are also a few equally important questions, as Bruh Paul so rightly points out: ‘How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard?
 
And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!’ (Rom.10:14-15)
 
My sentiments exactly! (smile) Yes Friends, people can only call on the name of the Lord to save them after they have heard the good news of Jesus’ gospel preached. And that entails a preacher explaining it to them, which therefore means that we need preachers to go out to those who have not heard the Word and deliver it to them.
 
For remember, that is the Great Commission that Jesus gave to the disciples, and consequently us, before He left this earth and ascended back to heaven.
 
‘Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples of) all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt.28:19-20)
 
So my brethren, it’s our bounden duty to teach those around us the Word, and send out others to all nations to broadcast the good news of Jesus, because that’s the only way they will ever hear it, and thus have the most wonderful option of salvation and eternal life.
 
Fortunately for us, in this technological age, it doesn’t depend entirely on sending out preachers, but we can transmit the Word all over the world by means of radio, television, and all the new-fangled do-dads of wireless communication. The world has never been ripe like it is right now for us to get the Word out my people.
 
And we’ll close with some important info from the scholars re verses 14-15 above. ‘10:14-15. In presenting the universal proclamation of the gospel, Paul presents the reasons why a universal proclamation is necessary: First, because the call must be preceded by faith; second, because faith must be preceded by hearing.
 
This shows that knowledge is essential to belief. Faith must have a valid content; third, because hearing requires a preacher; fourth because preaching requires being sent. The One who sends is God. Salvation is completely from God.’
 
Words of indisputable truth my people! So today let’s contemplate what part each of us has to play in the furthering of the gospel, whether it be close to home or far away, whether it be through personal appearances or by technological means.
 
But remember, we are all supposed to be, and even more importantly, act as disciples of Christ, which means being involved in spreading the good news of Jesus, wherever, and to whomever we have the opportunity.
 
So let’s get with it nuh, for Jesus is depending on us to spread His Word, so that not even ONE soul will be lost, and that ALL will come to salvation and eternal life. Much LOVE!
 
…in this fallen world…there’s no greater…or more important news that needs to be universally proclaimed…than the gospel of Jesus Christ…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 July 2014 Matthew 24:13

Matthew 24:13.     But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

Oh Friends, wonder of wonders, we’ve been granted another wonderful opportunity to serve Almighty God with the gift of life today! Glory Hallelujah!
 
And my people, please realize that today is today; not yesterday or tomorrow, but simply TODAY; the present time; a present from our heavenly Father! So let’s concentrate on it and no other nuh.
 
Let’s try to do our very best on this one special day, for every day that we’ve been granted the awesome privilege of drawing breath is indeed special, and ought to be treated as such. And if we just do that, treat each day as being very special and important, then it will surely satisfy the desires of yesterday, and spur on the growth for tomorrow.
 
Please note that that was what Jesus did during His earthly sojourn. He got up early, had meaningful communication with the Father, mapped out His day in accordance with the Father’s wishes and will, then He went out and worked that plan; healing and doing good.
 
He wasn’t overly concerned with what had happened yesterday, or was going to happen tomorrow, but kept His focus on, concentrated the vast majority of His energy and time on fulfilling His goals for that particular day, which is always, TODAY.
 
Therefore, in accordance with Jesus’ modus operandi, I’m asking us to please put the same perspective in our own lives; simply concentrate on what we can and have to do today.
 
As Jesus warned His listeners in the Sermon on the Mount: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow (therefore do not worry about tomorrow): for tomorrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:33-34)
 
Yes Friends, once we’re seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness today, tomorrow will look after itself. And remember that tomorrow never really comes, it simply becomes today, so we just have to keep on doing the same thing, seeking God and His righteousness every today.
 
And that’s possibly the easiest way for us to adhere to our Bit: ‘But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.’
 
Oh mih people, as we said yesterday, the trait of endurance is a must in the believer’s life! And it’s possibly the hardest thing to do with all the pressures of life, of living, and of the world, being heaped upon us in these very sad and troubled times.
 
That’s why concentrating on just one day at a time, the day ahead of us, is so important. It frees us from all the other concerns that yesterday and tomorrow would have us pay unnecessary attention to. And just like yesterday, we’re going to look at some more of the many scripture passages that have to do with enduring.
 
And we’re going to begin with the words of Jesus, when He warns the disciples of serious persecution in their future. ‘And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.’ (Matt.19:22)
 
Yes my brethren, as the saying goes, ‘the race is not for the swift, but for the sure of foot;’ the one who takes his time to see where he is going and spells himself, so that he can endure; last the entire race.
 
Then we have the author of Hebrews warning us: ‘Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience (endurance), that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.’ (Heb.10:35-36)
 
Again, my people, it is all about staying strong and steadfast in the work of Christ, which we know isn’t always easy, but we’re certain of His generous help when we obey His will.
 
Meanwhile, James says this on the very real and tangible subject of temptation. ‘Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that LOVE him.’ (James 1:12)
 
And I think Friends, that it will be an excellent idea to close with some wise, interesting and important observations from the scholars on that verse.
 
‘1:12. Mankind understandably may look on tragedy as the curse of God, as Job’s friends did. Trials are, however, the means through which God’s blessings can come. One’s endurance in and victory over trials brings God’s blessings. Christians, therefore, are not instructed to seek avenues of escape.
 
God desires that they mature in the situation rather than move from it (cf. Rom.5:3-5; 1 Pet.1:6-7). He does, however, promise to provide an escape if the testing becomes unbearable (1 Cor.10:13).’
 
And I’ll break the scholars words here to show us that scripture, since I know that many of us won’t look it up if I just say to do so, and it’s very important for us to know and understand that scripture verse.
 
‘There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear (endure) it.’ (1 Cor.10:13)
 
Yeh Friends, we all run to that verse as soon as trouble shows up, expecting God to quickly deliver us. But that’s not the purpose it serves.
 
For, as the scholars continue: ‘God’s people need to meditate more on James 1:12 than 1 Corinthians 10:13. The reason for this, and why God allows trials in the lives of His people, is revealed in the Mosaic Law: ‘That he might humble thee, and that he might prove thee, to do thee good at thy latter end.’ (Deut.8:16).’
 
Yeh mih breddren, running this race of earthly life is all about ENDURANCE; about standing strong and steadfast in God’s LOVE and plan for each and every one of us.
 
So today, let’s make it our number one priority nuh, for that is indeed the wisdom of Almighty God, and we certainly can’t get any better than that! Much LOVE!
 
…when we make up our minds to endure…rather than simply escape…our heavenly Father is pleased…and gives us even more grace to endure…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 July 2014 Matthew 24:13

Matthew 24:13.    But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

Summer, oh beautiful summer! What would we do without you eh? Hn! Possibly go more than stir crazy from being cooped up inside for so long. And I hear a lot of laughter coming from down south.

Yes you southerners, you can laugh because summer is a year round treat for you all. But we northerners do appreciate our summer, after those long, cold, winter days and nights cosseted in close quarters.

That’s why we go crazy, behave like leggo-beasts, when the summer time comes around and we experience the thrilling rays of a sun that shines not only bright, but also hot and heavy, and we can get outside in the heat, half naked – sometimes totally naked – (smile) and let loose all the passion and enthusiasm we’ve stored up during the dreadful winter months.

And so far we’ve had beautiful summer weather; not too hot, but hot enough, with decent winds to keep us comfortable, so that the days and nights aren’t too muggy and sweaty.

And all God’s people declared a loud and hearty cheer of ‘Thank you Lord for this delightful summer weather! We hope that it continues like this all summer long! And in grateful appreciation, we praise and honour your glorious name! Amen!’

But Friends, please remember that the summer has just begun, so everything and anything is still possible. But we’ve just got to hold on to our optimism with hungry hope and expectant faith, without thinking about what lies ahead after summer – winter, with its cold, lonely days and dark, dreary nights.

And now that I’ve put the fear of winter into us, (smile) let’s turn to the word from our almanac today that shouts at us: ‘ENDURE!’ 

Yes Friends, we need to endure those long, dark, lonely days and nights of winter, be they physical or emotional, so that we can eventually come into the light and lightheartedness of summer. Whatever we’re going through my people, whenever we go though it, ENDURANCE is a MUST!

For as the ensuing quote from the war days British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill (1874-1965) declares: ‘Sure I am of this, that you have only to endure to conquer.’

And that’s indisputable truth my brethren! You may not always conquer when you endure, but you’ll NEVER CONQUER, UNLESS YOU ENDURE!

And that goes for our Christian faith more than anything else in this whole wide world! Jesus clearly states the need for endurance in our Bit: ‘But he that shall endure to the end, the same shall be saved.’

Oh Friends, there are so many Scripture passages that call for the express need of endurance on our earthly pilgrimage, that I’m just going to quote a few of them. Let’s begin with something from the gospel of Mark, where Jesus is relating the parable of the sower.

‘And these (seeds) are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; And have no root in them selves; and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction (tribulation) or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended (caused to stumble).’ (Mark 4:16-17)

Yes my people, in God’s great universe, even seeds need to endure in the darkness of the earth for a time, until they are ready to sprout forth. And unfortunately, too many of us today are like those seeds that are sown on stony ground. As soon as any difficulties arise, we are quick to complain and bail out.

But my brethren, the hallmark of a true believer in Christ is in our strong power of endurance, our perseverance and steadfastness, regardless of our prevailing circumstances! That’s why Jesus also told the disciples: ‘In your patience (perseverance, long-suffering) possess ye your souls.’ (Luke 21:19)

Patience and perseverance are paramount in Christianity my people!

Meanwhile, in Bruh Paul’s famous chapter on LOVE, he boldly declares of that most venerable emotion: ‘(LOVE) Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.’ (1 Cor.13:7)

Yeh Friends, true LOVE is of God, and it endures everything that’s thrown against it, and in doing so, also lasts forever!

We also know Bruh Paul’s memorable words to the Galatians on the subject: ‘And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not (do not lose heart). As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.’ (Gal.6:9-10)

And we’ll end with some more memorable words from Hebrews, re running our earthly race. ‘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 (endurance, perseverance) the race that is set before us.

Looking unto Jesus the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction (hostility) of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint (discouraged) in your minds (souls).’ (Heb.12:1-3)

Ah mih people, standing strong and steadfast in faith, with patience, perseverance and endurance is of the utmost importance in our Christian walk!

So let’s take all we’ve heard this morning to heart and let it re-energize us nuh, help us to stand strong, bear all things, in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and thus persist, endure, and see our race of life through to the very end. That’s wisdom of and for the ages! Much LOVE!

…only as believers steadfastly endure their trials and tribulations…will the church of Christ grow…and more importantly…endure… 

P.S. Oh Friends, the ole fella’s shaking it somewhat rough this morning, due to a pretty late night and the untimely acting up of my allergies. But I’m practicing what I preach…I’m enduring. (smile) Much LOVE!