Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 February 2018 1 John 3:18.

1 John 3:18.    My little children, let us not LOVE in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth.

Welcome friends, welcome to another great day on God’s great earth! Wow! Both the SON and the Sun are shining brightly; the latter so bright that if you’re not careful you can be blinded by its reflection off the white snow. (smile) Is it ever a joy and a pleasure to be alive to see another day! 

Please give our wonderful God much praise and thanks for the breath we’re still drawing in these turbulent times, for without Him we’d surely be faltering in the darkness of an evil and ungodly world. 

And can you imagine the bacchanal that ‘s taking place in places like T&T and Rio right now, at the height of the carnival season? Mama Yo! Fete fuh so! Everybody’s trying to get in as much partying as possible because tomorrow is Ash Wednesday…and then all the party done! (smile) 

Enough about partying though, let’s turn our attention to something that’s much more important and oh so lacking, but ever so necessary in our world, if it’s ever to run right; we’re talking about how to ‘Practice LOVING.’ That’s the name of the poem I want to share with us today from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. 

Please pray sincerely with me. ‘It is so simple, dear Lord So pleasant and comfortable To sit in church on a Sunday morning Listening to a sermon about LOVE – Perhaps even speculating a bit On whether my LOVE surpasses the LOVE Of the person to my right Or the Person to my left. 

But to LOVE with Your LOVE To practice LOVING, dear God How uncomfortable the church pew becomes When I hear this ringing challenge When I see Your gazing eyes. Suddenly I remember the vicious remarks Of the woman who misjudged me. I remember the unscrupulous associate Who finagled my husband’s job. I remember the careless driver Who totaled our shining new car. 

So quickly, Lord, I am faced With a haunting parade Of shameful, UNLOVING attitudes. God, You know me so much better Than I know my own complex self And still You continue to LOVE me. Give me, I pray, a fresh glimpse Of Your vast, immeasurable LOVE For it is only out of gratitude for Your LOVE That I shall finally learn What it means to practice LOVING.’ 

And isn’t that the everlasting truth my brethren! Only with God’s help can we truly practice LOVE! It’s something our world desperately lacks, but so badly needs! Just look at all the strife and war, the anger, hate and resentment that’s so blatant in our current societies. How could that ever be good for us eh? 

We need to come together rather then be split apart, and ONLY LOVE, or rather the PRACTICE OF LOVE, brings people together. And yes, I know that tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and everybody will be spouting LOVE, but LOVE is not, cannot be a one Day Special, if it is to have any real and lasting effect, especially if fuelled by commercialism as Valentine’s Day is in our current society. 

Hence the command from the first epistle of John in our Bit: ‘My little children, let us not LOVE in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth.’ And as the scholars tell us: ‘3:18. In tongue refers to mere talk.’ And over the years I’ve tried to beat it into my children’s heads that you can’t talk LOVE, because LOVE is an action word! I hope you finally got the message mih LOVELIES! (smile)

Unfortunately though, when coming to LOVE, that’s all our world is about; TALK! We talk a very good talk about LOVE, but not enough of us walk the walk of true and sincere LOVE. And it’s not an easy thing to do, when we are surrounded and bombarded by all sorts of injustices and other things which don’t normally bring out the emotion of LOVE. 

Our poem above points out some of those difficult times; vicious remarks from being misjudged, unscrupulous associates, and careless drivers. Those things certainly don’t bring out LOVE in a natural manner, but our God wants us to have that sort of response, because that’s His response to our own misdeeds. 

So LOVE is something we have to actively and consciously work at, especially since our Lord and Saviour, our Leader, Jesus Christ so plainly and purposefully commanded. 

‘But I say unto you, LOVE your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully (spitefully) use you, and persecute you. That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.’ (Matt.5:44-45) 

Ah friends, obviously that doesn’t sit well with our normal sinful nature, but if we’re born again and are true believers, we need to adhere to the words of our Leader. And we know that anytime we flounder, all we have to do is to cry out to Him for help, and He will help us. So nothing He asks us to do is impossible. That’s why we can go home now sincerely declaring who and who’s we are in our Tuesday Mantra. 

All together now, in strong voice: ‘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!’ 

All glory to God my people! Now let’s go out and do exactly as we just said; share Jesus’ LOVE with the world. Much LOVE!

…what the world needs now…is LOVE…sweet LOVE…something we can never have enough of…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 February 2018 1 Corinthians 15:57.

1 Corinthians 15:57.   But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Ah mih people, welcome to another day on God’s great earth! Oh, I know that we will be surrounded by numerous problems and everyday we hear of more and more foolish strife, war and heated words in our society, but that’s no reason not to give thanks to Almighty God for the good things He’s done, is doing, and will do in our individual lives. Yeh friends, telling God, ‘Thank You,’ is essential for our very survival. 

Now I’m going to share something from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional that I’m pretty sure I’ve never shared before. I don’t know why, if it was just too long and didn’t lend itself to useful paraphrasing, but to day I’m going to share the entire thing, because I believe it’s ever so important for believers in these violent and negative times to understand. 

So here goes. In the first place it is titled: ‘Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!’ So you know it’s all about thanking God. 

And Gramps Schuller says: ‘When you lose a LOVED one, there is a way to thank God. You can thank Him for the promise of eternal life. You can thank Him for the assurance that someday you will be reunited with the one you’ve lost. The worse the loss, the harder the fall, the deeper the pain – the more you need to say, “Thank You, Lord!”  

Thank You, Lord! is the force that draws back the curtains, letting tomorrow’s light pierce today’s darkness. Thank You, Lord! is the first slippery step back up from the ditch of depression. Thank You, Lord! is the seed of faith planted in the dry, cracked earth. When you least feel like doing it – say Thank You, Lord! 

You don’t say Thank You to God because you are crediting or blaming Him for your heartache. NO! Nothing could be further from the truth! God is good! He is the Father of LOVE and goodness! Most of the time we make our own heartache. Why then do we say Thank You, Lord, in the midst of the raging storm? 

We say Thank You, Lord, that you’re still there to help us! Thank You, Lord, that I’m not totally alone! Thank You, Lord for the help you will send me. Thank You, Lord. Thank You for tomorrows that are sure to come. Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! It’s a vital element of positive prayer.’ 

Oh friends, I do hope that Gramps Schuller’s words on the importance of saying ‘Thank You,’ to God, have resonated and reverberated in us, and will continue to do so, because if we want to have positive thoughts and actions, we first have to use positive words, in spite of our circumstances. And there are no simpler and yet more positive words than those two: ‘Thank You!’ 

In our crazy, confused and troubled world, when said to others, they can diffuse a tremulous situation; soften a hard heart, lend healing to a broken one, and bring a smile to a sour face. And when we sincerely say them to God, we just raise the level of our faith and maturity. 

Our relationship with our heavenly Father enters a deeper phase, because we are acknowledging His goodness and LOVE, His omnipotence and ability to control circumstances, both our own and the world’s. We are saying in effect, ‘heavenly Father we trust You, regardless of what’s happening in our lives and the world. We’re standing firm on Your promises, because we know that You are faithful and will keep EVERY promise that You’ve made.’  

Now here is our Bit, which declares the thing that we ought to be most grateful for and give the most thanks for: ‘But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, we can never be too thankful or grateful for the victory over death, hell, the grave and any other negative things, that Jesus has given us through His own sacrificial death, resurrection and ascension, through the never-ending grace of our heavenly Father. 

And Bruh Paul further sates in his second letter to the Corinthians: ‘Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to (leads us in) triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour (fragrance) of his knowledge by us in every place. For we are unto God a sweet savour (aroma) of Christ, in (among) them that are saved, and in (among) them that perish.’ (2 cor.2:14-15) 

Oh friends, are we ever a sweet fragrance to God when we accept His Son Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour, and wisely accept His free offer of salvation and eternal life, and thus will not be relegated to the foolish group that will perish because of their non-acceptance of Christ. He doesn’t want anything more than that. So, with His awesome help, let’s do our best to bring others to that realization nuh. 

Now let’s go home declaring to the world who and whose we are in our Tuesday Mantra. In full voice and heartfelt sincerity: ‘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 we are sincere, then let’s go out and share that amazing LOVE of Christ, as He so ardently desires. Much LOVE!

…LOVE unshared…is No LOVE at all…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 February 2018 Isaiah 1:18.

Isaiah 1:18.   Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

Welcome, welcome, one and all to a brand new day in God’s great universe! And it’s not only a new day, but also one filled with new mercies and blessings from our heavenly Father, stuff he made specially for today. 

He threw out all the left overs from yesterday and began from scratch this morning, so those who LOVE Him and are called according to His purpose can bask in the sunshine of His everlasting goodness. 

Wow! What a magnificent and magnanimous Deity we serve and worship my brethren! But remember YOU have to communicate with HIM, to get those goodies!  He doesn’t just hand them out willy-nilly. (smile) 

And would you also believe that today is the 1st of February? Brother! We were just singing Auld Lang Syne a few days ago, welcoming the New Year, now we’re already hot into the bacchanalian bash called Carnival, with Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day falling the same time in two weeks. Is the year flying by or what? 

Let’s hope that we all are keeping our New Year’s resolution, that of walking ever closer with Christ this year, strong and in good order, because that’s the only way we will be successful in this crazy, troubled, war-like, evil world. 

And you know friends, the ‘One thing that turns the world from an ugly place to a beautiful place is LOVE. LOVE gives the world hope!’ And is that ever so true my people. Without LOVE permeating our hearts and souls, we simply have no hope, since hate is all about destroying, but LOVE is about building; building together in close harmony. 

But sadly, if we look around our world right now, there is very little, if any building, everywhere is simply destruction, both manmade and natural. How does that augur for the future of our planet eh? It’s not very encouraging. If we keep on destroying everything in our path, the future generations will be left with nothing. 

Is that what we want for our children, and our children’s children? Even the evildoers will answer no to that question, but none of us are doing anything substantial to stop if from coming to pass. That’s why we’re crying out now, in our Bit, like the prophet Isaiah did on the Lord’s behalf, many centuries ago to the Israelites. 

‘Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.’ 

Yeh friends, it’s all about mankind sitting down and reasoning together if we want to see a better world. And the two verses after our Bit clearly spell out the consequences of not doing so. ‘If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured by the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.’ (Is.1:19-20) 

Oh my people, we don’t have to wait for the Lord to tell us that. It’s written ever so plainly in our behaviour, where there’s so much dissension and disunity, even amongst family, much less between countries. Consequently, strife is all-pervasive, and wars are a dime a dozen. It’s easier to pick out where there is no strife than where there is strife, because there are so much fewer of the former. That’s to tell you how bad it is. 

But turning back to our Bit. Let’s get some explanations from the scholars. ‘1:18-20. The prophet’s appeal to come and reason together reveals God’s gracious invitation to all men. It literally means to be “reasonable” by repenting and turning to God. Their sin is described as scarlet and red like crimson, referring to their blood guiltiness before God. 

The term ‘crimson’ also means “worm,” referring to the colourfast red dye of the scarlet worm. The eradication of this stain turns it snowy white and is symbolic of the life-changing grace of God, which delivers men from guilt and condemnation of sin. Thus the prophet reminds his readers that God stands ready to cleanse and forgive all who will turn to Him.’ 

Oh mih breddren, from way back then, our wonderful God was prepared to forgive sins to those who turned in repentance to Him, and today He is still in the forgiving business. All we have to do is turn to Him in true repentance. Are we willing to do that so our world and our children can enjoy a better standard of life in the future? 

I do hope so, because with all the amenities and advances in technology we now have, the most important aspect of our society, personal relations between humans is at a low ebb, and until we fix that, nothing else will make life any better. 

Now, for those of us who choose to LOVE the Lord and obey Him, let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings. In full voice and strong conviction: ‘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!’ 

Now let’s go out and do our bounden duty; share those blessings with others, as Jesus desires. Much LOVE!

…only by talking to each other…in good faith…will our world ever improve…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 January 2018 1 John 4:7.

1 John 4:7.   Beloved, let us LOVE one another: for LOVE is of God; and every one that LOVETH is born of God, and knoweth God.

                                          HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Well friends, 2018 is finally here, and I wish all of us the best for this New Year. I hope that we all enjoyed a good New Year’s Eve celebration, keeping the libations to a minimum so that the brains didn’t get addled. (smile) 

But yuh know what friends, I’m dubbing 2018 as ‘THE YEAR OF LOVE!’ And our motto for this YEAR OF LOVE, is EACH ONE LOVE ONE! 

All we have to do is LOVE One person each and every day of the year, so that our world will be filled with more LOVE than hate. Now is that so hard to do friends? It should be much easier than hating one person every day, which we seem to do so well. 

The long and short of the story my people is that our world has fallen so low in the last year with all the strife and warmongering, that we don’t have much lower to go. If we continue in this sad and foolish vein, our world will soon explode. 

And we’ve already opened the year with threats from North Korea, and riots in Iran, plus all the other theatres of strife that persist from 2017. Is this the way we really want to see our world go, mushroom in a cloud of nuclear conflagration? 

Because you can bet your bottom dollar if the downward spiral continues, one of the mad, incompetent, power hungry dictators running our world is going to push that red button, and our world will never be the same. It might even cease to exist, such is the power of nuclear war and weapons. 

That’s why I’m advocating so strongly for 2018 to be a turn around year, where Christians come together and truly begin living and LOVING like followers of Christ, fighting tooth and nail to restore some sense of balance and common sense in our world. 

Oh fellow believers, if we don’t do it, who else is going to eh? Lucifer and his workers of iniquity like the way the world is going, but Jesus certainly doesn’t, and if we’re supposed to be His ambassadors, His hands, feet, mouth and ears on earth, then it’s our bounden duty to try and recapture the world from the denizens of evil. 

So please let’s get with the LOVE Scene nuh man! Let’s do our best to remove the current leaders and elect sensible, godly ones, who won’t threaten to go overboard at the drop of a hat. Let’s cut out the complacency and compromise and begin working together to make Christ’s Body the most powerful in the land. That’s the best way to glorify Him! 

And now that I’ve made my plea, added my two cents worth (smile) let’s turn to those unfortunate brothers and sisters who have to go out and labour this cold, cold New Year’s Monday since our 24/7 society needs constant care. Yuh know it’s so cold that some of the water on Niagara Falls froze. So let’s send them out to work with a rousing rendition of our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, which we never have a problem doing, when we ourselves are staying at home celebrating. (smile) 

In strong voice 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!’ 

Ah mih friends, I could hear the after effects of the New Year’s Eve celebrations; the hoarse, croaky and out of tune voices. But at least we had the right spirit. (smile) And my fellow believers, we couldn’t have a more appropriate Bit this morning than these wonderful words of John, as he informs us that God IS LOVE. 

‘Beloved, let us LOVE one another: for LOVE is of God; and every one that LOVETH is born of God, and knoweth God.’ That means if we want to know about true LOVE, then we have to be involved in a serious relationship with God. 

And we’ll just end with these oh so appropriate words of John, as he reminds us of the importance of LOVE and knowing God. ‘He that LOVETH not knoweth not God: for God is LOVE. In this was manifested the LOVE of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world that we might live through him. 

Herein is LOVE, not that we LOVED God, but that he LOVED us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so LOVED US, WE OUGHT ALSO TO LOVE ONE ANOTHER.’ (1 John 4:8-11) 

That’s what I’m trying to achieve friends, but amongst supposed Christians, it’s like pulling teeth. Remember some of Christ’s last words to the disciples: ‘This is my commandment, That ye LOVE one another, as I have LOVED you.’ (John 15:12)  Plain and straightforward words, as always from our Lord and Saviour. 

Please my brethren, let’s try and seriously action them this year nuh; that is if we want our world to exist in a healthy and godly manner. Much LOVE!

…and now abideth…faith…hope…LOVE…these three…but the greatest of these is…LOVE…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 December 2017 Romans 13:12.

Romans 13:12.   The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.

And as the days of Advent, the preparatory period before Christ’s birth advances, and the Christmas season intensifies, LOVE and joy, peace and goodwill fill the air! Wow! And I naively wonder, why can’t it be like that all year round eh? But I guess that’s just asking too much of our sinful secular society. A few days, once a year is all they seem to be able to spare. But we’ll take it and just keep working to get more. 

And as we gather in the sanctuary this Sunday, to worship and fellowship and give thanks, let’s burst out with a most worthy song, one of the all-time favourites of the Christmas season, ‘O come all ye faithful.’  In true Christmas spirit, let’s raise the roof of our sanctuary and that of heaven too with harmonious sacrificial praise from our joyful lips and hearts. 

‘O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant, Come ye, O come ye, to Bethlehem. Come and behold Him, born the King of angels; ( Chorus: O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.)  True God of true God, Light from Light Eternal, Lo, he shuns not the Virgin’s womb; Son of the Father, begotten, not created; (Chorus)  Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation; Sing, all ye citizens of heaven above! Glory to God, all glory in the highest; (Chorus)  

See how the shepherds, summoned to His cradle, Leaving their flocks, draw nigh to gaze; We too will thither bend our joyful footsteps; (Chorus)  Child, for us sinners poor and in the manger, We would embrace Thee, with love and awe; Who would not love Thee, loving us so dearly? (Chorus) Yea, Lord, we greet Thee, born this happy morning; Jesus, to Thee be glory given; Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing. O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.’ 

Ah friends, what a beautiful and grateful way to praise our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ for all that’s He’s done, is still doing and will do for us in the future. Praise His Holy Name. He is the reason why we have hope for the future, faith in salvation and joy in the promise of eternal life! All the more reason to LOVE and adore Him! Not to despise and cast aspersions and try to remove Him from our society. 

But I guess there will always be doubters and evildoers, so it’s up to us believers to raise His profile and make His LOVE Revolution a success. For we are His ears, arms, mouths, legs, and hands in the world, His ambassadors, His disciples, and as we go, so will His movement, His church. Some parts of it are thriving, who knows why, but most are finding it difficult to survive, and many are even closing. 

That’s not a very good vibe my people, and means that we’re not doing as good a job as we should. Christ is not being reflected in us as fully as He should be. That’s why we need to take the wise advice in our Bit, from Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.’ 

Yeh friends, it’s almost dawn, Jesus will soon be coming back, and right now our efforts are sadly lacking, so we need to improve dramatically. As Bruh Paul continues to the Roman church: ‘Let us walk honestly (properly), as in the day; not in rioting (revelry) and drunkenness, not in chambering (licentiousness) and wantonness (lewdness), not in strife and envying.’ (Rom.13:13) 

And it’s no secret friends that too many of us so-called Christians are deeply involved in too much of those worldly improprieties. We need to stop the hypocrisy; narrow the gulf between the Christian stuff we mouth, and the worldly trail we walk. As Bruh Paul warns: ‘But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.’ (Rom.13:14) 

And the scholars offer this explanation re that verse. ‘13:14. Make not provision for the flesh: One should not seek opportunities to satisfy deep-seated desires of the sin nature, but should seek occasion to manifest works that are consistent with the new life in Christ.’  

And that’s all Christ is asking of us yes friends: if you claim to believe in Him, then please live the way He desires you to live. He doesn’t expect us to be perfect, because we don’t have the capacity for that, but He does expect us to be excellent and diligent in doing His work, like He was excellent and diligent in doing the Father’s work here on earth. When we don’t walk our talk, we just cause others to bad-mouth our Saviour and further demean His reputation, thus playing into the hands of the workers of iniquity. 

Therefore my faithful brethren, let’s do like Bruh Paul suggests to the Ephesians nuh. ‘And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove (expose) them). For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. But all things that are reproved (exposed) are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.’ (Eph.5:11-14) 

Oh friends, if we sincerely want to help the cause of Jesus, then we have to stop indulging in those sins that we know are ‘unfruitful works of darkness,’ sins of the unsaved, and instead expose them, bring them into the light, show them for the wrongdoings  that they are. It’s time friends, time for less talk and more action, time to throw off the cloak of darkness and put on the mantle of light that Jesus offers. That’s the ONLY way our world will ever improve. Much LOVE!

…Christians…oh Christians…where is your light that’s supposed to shine in the darkness…to light up the world…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 December 2017 Hebrews 1:3.

Hebrews 1:3.   Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged (cleansed) our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high. 

Ah yes friends, we’ve finally progressed to the magical day called Friday… And the workingman will most definitely remind us of that fact as he vociferously declares his song of freedom. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday, and slaving finish for this week! The next couple days is mih own to do with exactly as I please. And brother, yuh better believe I’m going to do just that! 

Wow! I’m going to eat down the place, if I want to; drink up mih liquor until ah black up and tumbling down; party like there was no tomorrow, and just thumb mih nose at the massa till Monday morning roll around again. Whew! Thank God for Fridays and the weekends yes, otherwise I’d just go crazy with this slave labour and a pittance for pay!’ 

Unfortunately my brethren, the ordinary workingman is finding it increasingly difficult to make a decent living in this prosperous world through the greed, incompetence and inhumane behaviour of those who own and control the means of livelihood. And sometimes you can’t really blame him when he goes overboard because the rampant injustice and strife in our society is more than enough to drive a body crazy. 

Luckily for us, we belong to the Christian faith, where our Leader Jesus Christ applies boundaries to our behaviour, so we don’t go overboard and fall into the tempter’s grasp. That’s why our Friday Chant is so different to the workingman’s song. So let’s chant it out now nuh, and thus give us the better picture of how believers ought to handle the weekend situation. 

In chorus 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.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, we ought to put Christ first and get ourselves ready for another week of work, rather than add insult to injury by beating down our bodies even further and giving the enemy control of our lives. And for all of our blessings and good tidings, we have to thank our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, as our Bit says: 

Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged (cleansed) our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high.’ 

And today we are going to delve a li’l deeper into verses 16-17 of Col.1, where Bruh Paul talks about the pre-eminence of Christ, to help us understand the full significance of our Bit. ‘For by him were all things created that are in heaven, and that are in (on) earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities (rulers), or powers (authorities): all things are created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by (in) him all things consist.’ (Col.1:16-17) 

The scholars then explain thus: ‘1:16. This verse provides the reason Christ is called the “first-born” in verse 15. Paul’s rationale is this: Since by him were all things created, then, (1) Christ must have existed before the universe, and (2) He must be greater than all He made. Thrones…dominions…principalities…powers all refer to angelic beings (cf. Eph.1:21; 3:10). 

“Thrones” refer to angels who sit on thrones as rulers; “dominions” refer to domains or kingdoms over which these heavenly beings reign; “principalities” refer to rulers, and “powers” refer to angelic monarchs who wield regal power. Since Christ created these various ranks of angels, He is supreme over them. 

Striking a blow at the Colossian heresy advocating angel worship (2:18), this text forbids Christians to pay homage to angels or other heavenly beings created by God.’  And re ‘1:17. By him all things consist: That is by Him all things are held together; Christ now preserves all that He made in Creation.’ 

Yeh friends, Christ made it all, and now holds His creation together, as He sits at the Father’s right hand advocating on our behalf. So let’s remember that and thus keep everything in its proper perspective: Christ is Creator, Lord and Saviour, and the ONLY ONE deserving of worship and exaltation, not angels or any other beings He has made. 

Tomorrow we will touch some more on the angel situation, but for today, let’s ponder what we’ve said and keep believing, keep studying the Word and living it out successfully in this evil world, in Jesus name, I pray. Much LOVE!

…to whom eventually shall all knees bow…and all lips declare His awesome glory…JESUS…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 October 2017 2 Chronicles 7:14.

2 Chronicles 7:14.   If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways: then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Oh friends, who knows what kind of day any of us will have today eh? When we awaken, it’s usually with the expectation of a bright, productive and positive day, but unfortunately, that’s not always the case. But what’s always the case though, is that on each and every day of our lives, we are positively embraced by the Holy Trinity of our God-head. The Father is looking out for us in His wisdom, omnipotence, grace and mercy. 

Meanwhile, the Son is advocating to the Father on our behalf, and also shining down brightly on and around us, so that we can have that proverbial lamp for our feet and light for our path.  And betwixt and between all that, the Holy Spirit is operating in our spirits, showing us what the Father desires of us, helping us to do His holy will and communicate with Him through prayer.  

And regardless of how our day turns out, those three magnificent, powerful and ever-LOVING spiritual Beings are ALWAYS in our corner. Now what could be better than that eh my fellow believers? Nothing really! That’s why on this Monday morning, even if your body, soul and spirit are not in sync, and you don’t feel like getting up to go to work, you know that that feeling can be overcome through the help of our Triune God and the singing of our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

So let’s belt it out now nuh with as much enthusiasm as we can muster. ‘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!’ 

Now feel the Holy Spirit working in you: brightening up your mood, causing the adrenaline to flow as you excitedly and enthusiastically get yourself together to go out amongst the heathen and do Jesus’ work in a most diligent and excellent manner. Glory to God my people! And what work is that, some of you ask? 

Well Jesus told His disciples to ‘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 alway(s), even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt.28:19-20) 

 And that same Great Commission also applies to us, but instead of going elsewhere, right now I believe we need to concentrate on fixing our own society, which has become so godless and evil and heretical, that an alarming number of us have never even heard about Jesus, in what is supposed to be, or at least once was a Christian Society. 

And it all begins with us acknowledging our Bit, putting those all-important, transformative words into action. ‘If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways: then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.’ 

Ah friends, how very encouraging is our God eh? For as the scholars tell us: ‘7:14-15. While this promise was originally given to Solomon regarding the people of Israel, it is certainly applicable to all who will call on the Lord in repentance and faith. These verses stand as a high expression of God’s LOVING readiness to hear the prayers of a repentant people (cf. 6:37-39; James 4:8-10).’

And there’s no doubt that although we call ourselves Christians, too many of our actions aren’t Christian-like: we’re not humble before God; we don’t seek His face or pray like we should…and don’t talk about the wickedness that exists in our ranks. Hn! That’s why I maintain that all the recent natural disasters and physical strife are a serious warning from Almighty God. 

And if you figure our Bit comes from the Old Testament so it’s outdated, then listen to James, as he talks about worldliness and pride. ‘Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw nigh (near) to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye doubleminded. Be afflicted and mourn (lament) and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness (gloom). Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.’ (James 4:7-10) 

Oh friends, if we want to see brighter days and our land healed, then we’ve got to turn back to the One True and Living God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, we’ve gone astray for far too long now. So let’s be wise like the Israelites of old nuh; acknowledge the warning…and repent.  Much LOVE!

…God punished His chosen people…when they went astray…so why not us eh…the chickens are coming home to roost…

 

 

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