Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 September 2017 John 14:16.

John 14:16.   And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.

Arise my brethren, it is the Lord’s Day, and we must be trekking to His sanctuary to engage in blissful fellowship with other believers. What a time it will be, with joyful songs of praise and worship, the reading of God’s word, which enlivens our spirit, and words of encouragement and prayer for and with each other. 

But notwithstanding all of that, these are indeed disastrous times in our world, and we need extra comfort from our faith, thus we’ll open this morning with the old hymn ‘Precious Lord, take my hand’ that fits the bill. The song was written in 1932 by Thomas A Dorsey, a black man from Chicago after his wife Nettie died while giving birth to a child (who also died shortly thereafter). Dorsey sang the song for his friend, Gospel singer Theodore Frye, and Frye’s choir sang it the next Sunday at the Ebeneezer Baptist Church. 

So please friends, and fellow believers, let’s offer up the sacrifice of praise from our lips, as we seek comfort from our comforting God. In rich and soulful harmony now, as we feel it down in our very beings. ‘Precious Lord, take my hand, Lead me on, let me stand, I am tired, I am weak, I am worn; Through the storm, through the night, Lead me on to the light: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) 

When my way grows drear, Precious Lord, linger near, When my life is almost gone, Hear my cry, hear my call, Hold my hand lest I fall: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) When the darkness appears And the night draws near, And the day is past and gone, At the river I stand, Guide my feet, hold my hand: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) 

Precious Lord, take my hand Lead me on, let me stand, I’m tired, I’m weak, I’m alone; Through the storm, through the night Lead me on to the light Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home (lead me home)’ 

Oh my brethren, there is NONE other than Almighty God who can satisfy that need for reassurance and comfort in our hurting souls! That’s why we need to call out to Him first when terrible times overcome us, for He is our indispensable Healer and Comforter. Listen as Jesus offers assurance to His disciples in our Bit. ‘And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.’ 

Oh friends, what a wonderful Lord and Saviour we have! He knew that He had to go away and that the disciples would be left in the lurch without Him around.  So He made arrangements with the Father to send them another Comforter, like Jesus, the Holy Spirit, that would dwell within them forever. And he continues: ‘Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.’ (John 14:17) 

And the scholars tell us: ’14:17. The Spirit…shall be in you: The ministry of the Holy Spirit, promised to believers of this age, is unique, since it is given to all believers alike, and is permanent (dwelleth, that is “takes up residence”). See verse 23.’  

And we all know that the Holy Spirit made that magnificent appearance to all believers on the Day of Pentecost. Jesus had told them to stay in Jerusalem until the new Comforter came, because they would not have had the parts to go out and do what He required of them. The Good Book describes that momentous event thus: ‘And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord (one purpose, mind) in one place. 

And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:1-4) 

Ah mih friends, our God doesn’t too things in half measures! When He decides to put on a show, He puts on a big one, with all the bells and whistles, not a little Mickey-Mouse event! (smile) But Jesus’ most touching words to me, were the ones He spoke after promising to send the Holy Spirit. ‘I will not leave you comfortless (orphans): I will come to you.’ (John 14:18) 

What care and compassion Jesus shows for those distraught men who had given up everything they had to follow Him, thinking that He would be setting up a new kingdom at that time, only to later learn that He would be killed and then He would go away and leave them…but not alone. That’s not Jesus’ style friends. Once you come to Him, He will ALWAYS be with you: ‘for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Heb:13:5) 

Oh my people, in ending, all I can says is that the best place to find comfort and compassion in times of sorrow, is in the ever-open and ever-LOVING arms of Jesus. He has already offered the great invitation: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek (gentle) and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matt.11:28-30)  

Friends, it doesn’t get any better than that. But please remember, YOU have to make a serious decision to go to Him to find succour. It won’t just fall in your lap. Much LOVE!

…on a comfort scale of 1-10…Jesus is 11 plus…

 

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 February 2017 Psalm 139:23.

Psalm 139:23.   Search me,  O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my (anxious) thoughts.

Welcome to another beautiful day in God’s wonderful universe, my Scrip-Bit family and friends! The day is indeed unfurling as it should, as our omnipotent God planned it. But I beg to wonder why our temperature today is supposed to go up to around ten degrees Celsius, from a low of around minus 7, or thereabouts, and then fall back to below freezing temps by Sunday night?  They say it’s climate change. 

Ah Lord eh! That’s why so many people get sick in these volatile temperature changes! Today a whole lot of people will be out in shirt sleeves, declaring what beautiful spring-like weather it is. Then they’ll get caught without proper protection from the elements later on. But that’s the nature of the beast in these parts. (smile) 

Anyway, let’s take a look at a few of our friend Anselm’s quotes for this past week. Remember, his aspiration is to inspire us with his thoughtful words.  The first one says: ‘He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.’ And that’s quite true! 

But there are sensible risks and not so sensible ones. So we still have to consider whether the risks are worthwhile or not. It’s brave to go out on limb that seems able to stand your weight, but foolish to go out on one that is obviously too small. The same goes for risks. 

That brings us to this quote: ‘If you put yourself in a position where you have to stretch outside your comfort zone, then you are forced to expand your consciousness.’ That’s also true, but then again how far outside of your comfort zone do you want to go, or is it wise for you to go? It’s all a matter of your comfort level. 

And this next one declares: ‘The only limits to the possibilities in your life tomorrow are the buts you use today.’ More truth friends! You know how we always like to say marvelous things, then affix them with ‘a but.’ That’s the bane of our modern day language; everything, everything – but.  

And the last one tells us. ‘No one rises to low expectations.’ Yes my people, we cannot rise high unless our expectations are high. That’s just the normal workings of the universe. And our Christian faith expects us to keep on rising higher and higher, making excellence the watchword of our earthly walk with Jesus.  For if we do not aspire to excellence, the church will simply become stagnant and eventually fall apart. 

And I believe that is what’s happening right now. Christ’s church, His earthly body is not growing as it should, for numerous reasons. But we’re not here to talk about that today, we’re here to discuss the motives of our heart, of our spiritual being, as expressed by Bruh David in his grand Psalm 139 – The everlasting presence and power of God. 

He boldly, but contritely states in the last two verses – the first one our Bit. ‘Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my (anxious) thoughts. And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.’ (Ps. 39:23-24)  

Ah mih people, the overriding question now is, whether we as Christians, are willing, and or able to declare such a brave statement to our Maker? The truth of the matter is that we ought to be. We ought to be so open and be so close to our God, that we shouldn’t fear to go to Him in any situation at all, even though we know we are on the wrong side of the fence. 

For as the author of Hebrews reminds us: ‘Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’ (Heb.4:16) 

And I like the explanation the scholars put forward. ‘4:16. Only Christianity provides such boldness for sinful men before a holy God, and that boldness is possible only because of our High Priest (Jesus Christ). The figure of a throne suggests a place of authority and provision. It is the place to obtain God’s grace when it is especially needed.’  

Yeh friends, only our wonderful faith exhibits such a confidence in being able to go to God in any and every circumstance. He welcomes us, invites us in the Great Invitation (Matt.11:28-30) to come to Him when we‘re tired and weary and beset by life’s circumstances, and He will give us rest. 

No other faith offers such succour my brethren. So I don’t understand why so many of us are afraid to bare our hearts to the Lord. Remember though that’s He’s our Creator, and already knows what’s happening with us, even more than we know. He knows and sees the beginning to the end. 

Consequently friends, please let’s stop trying to hide our innermost secrets and fears from Him, because it’s foolish to do so. He wants us to come to Him and let it all out, to show that you truly believe in and trust Him.  

Yuh notice how Bruh David went to God without fear on everything – even eventually His adultery with Bathsheba and His murder of Uriah, her husband, after the prophet Nathan berated him about it. 

Now we won’t always get away scotch free with our wicked deeds – Bruh David paid a hefty price with strife in his house – but we’ll always get forgiveness and mercy if we sincerely repent of them. That’s wisdom for the ages my people. Please ponder on that today. Much LOVE!

…fear should never override faith…especially in dealing with God…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 October 2016 1 Samuel 30:6b.

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

Okay friends, it’s Monday, the last day of October 2016, time to get a move on, time to rock and roll! (smile) The battle has already been joined and we need to be there to help our fellow soldiers in the army of Christ. The army of the evil one is already fighting tooth and nail, and without our help our brothers and sisters already on the front line will suffer innumerable loss. 

And as always, we have the antidote for our lethargy and complacency, our lack of energy and enthusiasm, our complaining and self-pity; our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. So let’s belt it out so that we can be uplifted and enthused to get out and do Christ’s work nuh. 

All together 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!’ 

Good show mih breddren, good show! Our choirmaster, Jesus, was quite pleased with that rendition. The harmony and full voices were all that He expected. He was beaming from ear to ear. And you know there’s nothing more rewarding than putting a smile on Jesus’ face! 

So with our human motors now running smoothly on the fuel of adrenaline, let’s pick up the pace and enthusiastically get into the fray of this new workweek without further ado.  

That brings us to our Bit. ‘but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.’ 

Oh friends, you won’t know how that small bit of scripture touches and buoys my heart.  I can just see Bruh David sitting alone and forlorn at the entrance to the burnt out city of Ziklag, while his men mutter and complain around him, seriously talking about stoning him. He’s probably sadly shaking his head and thinking: ‘Why Lord, why eh?’ 

But then he remembers all the other misfortunes the Lord has successfully brought him through, the many victories the Lord had caused him to have, and his spirit lifts with the strong faith that he’s cultivated in the God of his forefathers over the years. And his next move is obviously to seek God’s advice. 

The problem here though my people, is that Bruh David had to raise that faith on his own, by himself, because there was no sympathetic human being to turn to. Likewise, there will be times when we find ourselves in the same situation; alone, with others crying out for our head, like they did for Jesus’. 

Friends, at those times, we have to dig deep down inside of us and dredge up the necessary faith that will lead us to Almighty God for help and guidance. For He is the ONLY One who can help us under those trying circumstances. 

That reminds me of another instance in Bruh David’s life, where he was encouraged in God, but this time by his covenant brother Jonathan, Saul’s son and heir to the throne. At that time Bruh David was on the run from Saul. 

The Good Book tells us. ‘And David saw that Saul was come out to seek his life: and David was in the wilderness of Ziph in a wood. And Jonathan Saul’s son arose, and went into the wood, and strengthened his hand in God (encouraged him).

And he said unto him, Fear not: for the hand of Saul my father shall not find thee; and thou shalt be king over Israel, and I shall be next unto thee; and that also Saul my father knoweth. And they two made a covenant before the Lord: and David abode in the wood, and Jonathan went to his house.’ (1 Sam.23:15-18) 

Oh my brethren, how blessed we are when we have even one friend to offer us that sort of encouragement! Job was another man of faith who had to encourage himself in God when God allowed Satan to cause him untold calamity. His wife told him to ‘curse God, and die,’ (Job 2:9b) 

That was exactly what Satan desired. But Job was not ready to give up all hope, and he reasoned that both good and evil came from God, so one had to learn to accept them both. (Job 2:10) 

But better yet, when his supposed friends were tongue lashing him, Job stalwartly proclaimed: ‘Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain (defend) mine own ways before him.’ (Job 13:15) 

That’s what we call unquenchable faith my fellow believers! Do we have that kind of faith? We should, but the problem is that kind of faith can only be acquired by undergoing true calamity. 

And the best example of encouraging one’s self in God is obviously our Lord and Saviour Jesus. Just look at how Judas betrayed Him, Peter denied Him thrice and all His other followers deserted Him when His time came. How do you think He stood up under the total desertion and the enormous physical and emotional punishment that followed eh?  

By encouraging Himself in His heavenly Father! Otherwise He would not have been able to bear the intense pain and terrible ‘sufferation’ without complaining. 

So friends, I just hope that we can appreciate the importance of strong faith in our Christian walk, and that it can only be built on the foundation of trials and tribulations. Much LOVE!

…when life seems oh so futile…Christians turn  their eyes, hearts and voices heavenward…where they find succour to salve their wounds…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 October 2016 Romans 8:37.


Romans 8:37.   Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us.

And then it was Saturday! A day when most of us don’t have to go out and labour, punch in and out on the man’s time clock. Oh what a blessing! Although we might actually work harder at home doing household chores than when we’re out labouring for the man. But at least we can do how much we want, when we want and at the pace we want. Glory to God! 

And would you believe, I have just the right inspiration this morning for us from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us for a better day. 

And for this Saturday morning, Anselm advises: ‘Do something small and create a flow. Just clean your desk. Or pay your bills. Or wash the dishes. You just need to get started. When you have finished that small task you’ll feel more alert and ready to go do the next thing. You just have to get started to get motivated. So if you really don’t feel like doing anything, start with something small and work your way out and up.’ 

That’s pretty good advice my people, especially if you’re somewhat under the weather and you don’t feel like doing anything at all, but there are things you must do. Just start small and gradually work your way up to the big things. You’ll be surprised at how much you have accomplished at the end of the day. 

Ah friends, life is certainly strange yes! And why do I say that? Because some days you need to tackle the big things first, the ones you fear or dread the most, else you’ll just keep on putting them off and they’ll never get done. At other times, like today, it’s the small stuff we need to do to motivate us into doing bigger ones. 

And you know what? That ties in rather nicely to our Bit. But before we get to it, let’s set the scene with a couple of verses before it. ‘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. 

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor 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.8:35-39) 

Oh my fellow believers in Jesus Christ, what a marvellous bit of scripture! Bruh Paul says that ABSOLUTELY NOTHING can separate us from the LOVE of God which is found in Christ Jesus. Glory Hallelujah! That is something to sing and shout and gloat about my people! For once we have become new creatures in Christ, NOTHING WHATSOEVER can break that bond; neither life, death, angels, nor the evil powers that be! 

That should be very reassuring to all who come to Christ for rescue.  Knowing that even though we may be considered simple sheep to be slaughtered, the unconditional and everlasting LOVE of God shall never depart from us and will comfort us through each and any situation, be it good or bad. 

And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘8:38-39. 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).’ 

Yes my believing brethren, our God is the greatest power in the universe, because He created it and still controls it. Everything in it is subservient to Him. And His purpose for and towards us? Why, it’s something we all know, or should know. 

The Good Book generously shares it with us, in the uplifting words of Bruh Paul. ‘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)  

And the scholars explain that verse thus: ‘8:28. To them that LOVE God is the human perspective. God is working all things together for good, but those who LOVE God are best able to appreciate that fact because they LOVE Him no matter what (cf. Job 13:15). To them who are the called is the divine perspective. Scripture often refers to believers as “the called” or “the elect.” 

Yeh friends, only those who truly LOVE God can appreciate the fact that even during our worst trials and tribulations, He is in the background working it all out for our good eventually. And I’m going to spoon feed you here again (smile) because the scripture is so phenomenal and relevant to what we are talking about.  

Listen to Job during his time of tribulation. ‘Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways (defend my ways) before him. He also shall be my salvation: for a hypocrite shall not come before him.’ (Job 13:15-16) 

Now isn’t that the utmost in faith? It surely is! Job has suddenly lost everything, his family and his earthly possessions, through no fault of his own, or no evil deed, but yet still he carries the flaming torch of trust and faith in the God of his fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Mama Mia! How many of us possess such great faith today eh my people? Certainly not enough, for as soon as the first lash hits, and no succour is forthcoming from God, many of us begin to complain, lose faith and backslide. 

Hear the scholars on Job’s faithfulness. ’13:15. Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him expresses the unquenchable faith of one who lives by faith, not by sight.  Even when it appears that God Himself has turned against Job, he will still trust in God.’  

Ah mih people, there’s no more for me to say, except that we should sincerely ponder those scriptures that we’ve touched on today and try to see where they fit into our journey with Christ, and as always, turn to Jehovah God and ask for help in bettering ourselves faith wise. That’s the greatest wisdom available to mankind. Much LOVE!

…only when one truly walks by faith…and not by sight…can one truly appreciate the LOVE of God…found in Jesus Christ…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 August 2016 Psalm 50:15.

Psalm 50:15.    And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.

And then it was Wednesday; a bright and shiny, but somewhat cloudy day! (smile) I know it sounds somewhat confusing, but the sun is shining and there are a few grey clouds hovering overhead. 

However, the important thing is that the Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is shining as brilliantly as He always does. There’s never an element of cloudiness in Him! Praise His holy name! 

And so, in honour of His constant faithfulness, I want us to begin today by singing this soulful ditty I heard the Hour of Power choir and congregation singing last night. I don’t know it personally, but the simplicity and practical nature of the song touched my heart and made me want to share it. 

So let’s get soulful and sing: ‘Jesus is all the world to me, My life, my joy, my all; He is my strength from day to day, Without Him I would fall. When I’m sad to Him I go.No other one can cheer me so; When I am sad he makes me glad, He’s my friend. 

Jesus is all the world to me, I want no better friend. I trust Him now, I’ll trust Him when Life’s fleeting days shall end. Beautiful life with such a friend, Beautiful life that has no end; Eternal life, Eternal joy, He’s my friend!’ 

Oh what wonderful sentiments my brethren. And as I said earlier, I just LOVE it’s simplicity and practicality. And besides, there’s truly no better friend than Jesus; He is able to satisfy all our needs, calm all our fears and comfort us in the deepest and darkest times of our lives! No human being can do all that for us. 

And to further honour and glorify Him, as well as lift our spirits, let’s declare our Wednesday Wail nuh with plenty enthusiasm, and sincerity. 

Wailing: ‘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!’ 

Oh my people, my people, how beautiful it is to be alive on this glorious morn, feeling the breath of God coursing through my body as I look forward to the wonderful future that Jesus has planned for us, if we stick to the programme that He’s outlined! It doesn’t get any better than that friends! 

No wonder our Bit seems so appropriate. ‘And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ Yes my fellow believers, it’s all about glorifying Jehovah God, our Creator and heavenly Provider! 

And we do that by living the life God has set before us, doing so in faith and sincerity, and in times of trouble, crying out to Him for succour so that He can uplift us and further glorify His holy name. Oh what a wonderful Deity we serve and worship my people! 

Now let’s turn to some scriptures that corroborate our Bit. And to begin, we’ll go all the way back to the days of the prophet Samuel, when he lead Israel to repentance. 

‘And Samuel spake unto all the house of Israel, saying, If ye do return unto the Lord with all your hearts, then put away the strange (foreign) gods and Ashtaroth (images of Canaanite goddesses) from among you, and prepare your hearts unto the Lord, and serve him only: and he will deliver you out of the hands of the Philistines.’ (1 Sam.7:3) 

Oh friends, that is exactly what we need to do in this current evil and godless world. Like the Israelites back then, we’re worshipping all sorts of idols and false gods, thus our world is quickly going to hell in a hand basket. And the only thing that will save it is repentance and a sincere return to serving and worshipping the One and True Living God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Yuh see how all the other societies that abandoned Him and worshipped other gods fared? There was never any true peace, just constant war, destruction and despair. Now why do you think our society would be any different, suffer a different fate eh? 

Yes, our God is a merciful and gracious, forgiving and LOVING God, but He’s no push over, He’s very serious about whatever He says. And He’s said several times in His word that if you don’t serve and worship Him, you’ll be destroyed. So I don’t know where we’ve gotten this foolish idea to abandon God, kick Him out of our society, and then expect to prosper. Steups! 

Ah friends, it’s up to us believers to bring about that repentance. It’s not going to be easy, but with God’s awesome help we can do it. Remember we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. 

And we’ll end with this appropriate passage from Job, where his buddy Zophar reproves him. ‘If he (God) cut off (passes by), and shut up (imprisons), or gather together, then who can hinder (restrain) him? For he knoweth vain (deceitful) men: he seeth wickedness also; will he not then consider it? 

For vain (empty-headed) man would be wise, though man be born like a wild ass’s colt (when a wild donkey’s colt is born a man). If thou prepare thine heart, and stretch forth thine hands toward him; If iniquity be in thine hand, put it far away, and let not wickedness dwell in thy tabernacles (tents). 

For then shalt thou lift up thy face without spot; yea, thou shalt be steadfast, and shall not fear. Because thou shalt forget thy misery, and remember it as waters that pass away. And thine age (life) shall be clearer (brighter) than the noonday; thou shalt shine forth, thou shalt be as the morning.’ (Job 11:10-17) 

Yes my brethren, though Zophar was wrongly ragging on Job, believing that some hidden, serious sin caused his tribulations, his advice was right on. An omniscient God could clearly see man’s sin, and if he confesses and repents, the Lord will forgive Him and make his life better. 

Now that is what we need to do in this ungodly world; bring about confession and repentance, so that our beautiful world can be lifted up, be without spot and without fear. That’s the wisdom of the age! Much LOVE!

…only Christ’s LOVE Revolution can save our sinking world…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 August 2016 Matthew 11:28.

Matthew 11:28.    Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 

Well mih people, Sunday, the first day of the week has rolled around again! And what a beautiful day it ought to be, one filled with praise and worship and fellowship celebrating the Sabbath of our great and awesome God! 

So it’s only right that we begin the proceedings today with some worship in the form of the old and greatly beloved hymn, ‘Rock of Ages,’ written in 1763 by the Rev. Augustus Montague Toplady. Let’s belt it out with plenty verve, enthusiasm and sincerity nuh. 

‘Rock of Ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in thee; let the water and the blood, from thy wounded side which flowed, be of sin the double cure; save from wrath and make me pure. Not the labors of my hands can fulfill thy law’s demands; could my zeal no respite know, could my tears forever flow, all for sin could not atone; thou must save, and thou alone. 

Nothing in my hand I bring, simply to the cross I cling; naked, come to thee for dress; helpless, look to thee for grace; foul, I to the fountain fly; wash me, Savior, or I die. While I draw this fleeting breath, when mine eyes shall close in death, when I soar to worlds unknown, see thee on thy judgment throne, Rock of Ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in thee.’ 

Yes friends, that’s the wisest and most sensible move a human being can ever make; turning to the Rock of all ages, Jesus Christ for comfort and succour! For He is the ONLY Being who can provide ALL that we need! Other beings can provide some of this and some of that, but Jesus Christ is the repository of everything that’s needed to live life successfully, both on earth and in heaven. 

NEVER forget that my brethren! Whatever we need, Jesus has it – and in abundance too, and He is also very willing to share whatever it is with those who come to Him in humility, sincerity and truth! 

Otherwise, why would He extend to all mankind what we refer to today as the Great Invitation eh, which is our Bit for today? ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.’ 

Oh my fellow believers, how wonderful is that invitation eh? No other living being in the history of mankind could ever truthfully offer such an invitation! None but our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! And that’s not even all of His wonderful invitation. 

Listen to the remainder. ‘Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt.11:29-30)  

Tell me friends, have you ever received a better invitation than that? Certainly not! Because no one else can match it! That’s why men of God, men of strong faith like Bruh David and Peter advise us to: ‘Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer (permit) the righteous to be moved (shaken). (Ps.55:22) ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.’ (1 Pet.5:6-7) 

Now why would two such godly men tell us to cast all our care on Almighty God if it wasn’t true eh? But as usual, we the finite, know it all humans, refuse to do as advised. Yeh, we think that we know more and can do more than the One who created us and still provides for us. Hn! 

Instead, we listen to that fool Lucifer, who has nothing that’s good or lasting to offer us. All he has going for him are lies and deceit, plus fancy, flimsy, gold-plated worldly goods set up in a false front, a facade. But yuh know what friends, behind all that gloss and glamour there’s nothing but sin, death and hell! 

Oh, we all know that working for Jesus is not glamorous, but it certainly is glorious and adventurous! And besides, the same worldly goods you get from Lucifer, you can get from working for Jesus, and these last much longer than Lucifer’s flimsy, marginal stuff. 

It makes me wonder though, why sensible people follow an unwise dissident like Lucifer, who had it all going for him as the Lord’s right hand man, but foolishly tried to overthrow Him, was kicked out of heaven, and now walks the earth to and fro seeking to do evil to all that he can. 

Remember friends, the evil one has no real power over us, unless we allow him to. Christ has already defeated him, trod him underfoot and captured the keys to hell, death and the grave. So there’s nothing to really fear from him, unless we let the glamorous but unsustainable things of the world that he offers, trip up our minds and hearts. 

Anyway, enough about Lucifer, we didn’t come here to talk about him, but about God. (smile) And by the way, let me offer my sincere apologies to my second homeland, Jamaica on the 54th anniversary of their Independence which was celebrated yesterday! Chuh! I knew of it, but yet I forgot it. I can imagine the celebrations that took place. 

And though I may live all over the world, Jamaica will always have a special place in my heart. I experienced some of the roughest days of my life there, but also some of the most heart-warming and adventurous. As the old people would say, it’s there that I turned man. (smile) Happy 54th Xaymaca – the Land of Wood and water! 

Now let’s end with this Benediction from Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) adapted from his writing ‘Enter His Gates.’ ‘Yesterday’s troubles, today’s problems, and tomorrow’s circumstances are all part of the pilgrimage you’re on with God, through the good times and the bad. Someday you’ll reach the finish line, and your exhaustion and perplexity will be over. 

And when that day comes, you’ll be in the Lord’s presence forever. But right here, right now, your life has meaning and purpose. Don’t ever give up. Always remember that the Lord Jesus Christ is there for you, with you even now. He alone is the source of our strength, our endurance to continue, and our reward when the journey is done.’ 

Gospel truth all of that my fellow believers! So please let’s take it all to heart and put it into action – right now, if not before, for it is indeed the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!

…Christ is our end all and be all…the first and the last…the Alpha and Omega…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 August 2016 Lamentations 3:31.

Lamentations 3:31.     For the Lord will not cast off for ever.

Oh friends, its Emancipation Day in the Caribbean! Mama Mia! Who would have thought it some years back eh? We’re celebrating that most wonderful, joyous and auspicious occasion of 178 years ago on August 1st 1838, when the slaves in the British Caribbean Colonies were finally set free! Glory Hallelujah! 

It is certainly a red letter day in the History of Caribbean people, and it’s wonderful that we have finally come to celebrate it every year. However, please let’s not use the enslavement and indentured labour of our forefathers as an excuse to behave negatively. But rather let’s use it as a stepping stone to positive things. We must not ever forget it, but we must let go of the negative emotions it raises up, else we will never be free of enslavement, that of the mental kind. 

On the Other hand, it’s also a Civic Holiday in most parts of Canada, which means a lot of people aren’t going to work today… and I hear shouts of ‘Glory Be!’ in the background. Now that’s good for us, but there are many not so blessed workers who have to get out and face the music this Monday morning, so let’s join with them and sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with as much spunk and enthusiasm as we can muster.  

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

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

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

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

Ah mih people, that was loud but somewhat raucous and not very harmonious! Our choirmaster, Jesus could only shake His head and sigh, because He knows what’s happening. As usual, those with the day off were the loudest and most out of tune. 

And before we go any further, let’s declare Granny’s advice which is so important for us believers in times of celebration. ‘Sonny boy, please, please, ah begging yuh, drunk or sober, please mind yuh business out there today!’ 

Yes friends, we do need to mind our business as we get into the celebrations since our enemy the devil, ‘as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.’ (1 Pet.5:8).  

Oh, and by the way, the ole fella testified in church yesterday! It wasn’t anything spectacular, just about ten minutes sharing the wonderful faithfulness of our God, as it related to my writing the Bit over a period of nine years. Hn! I certainly could not have done it without His magnificent, constant and consistent help. And I ended with our Tuesday Mantra. Hopefully that will get a few of the congregation thinking in better terms of whom and whose they are. 

That brings us to our Bit, which is rather appropriate: ‘For the Lord will not cast off for ever.’  And that’s the awesome truth my brethren. Regardless of our behaviour, our God will not cast us off for ever. Oh yes, He will chasten and discipline us, but NEVER will He boot us out of His ever-LOVING kingdom. 

The psalmist Asaph, in Psalm 77 – Who is so great a God as our God – queried God’s faithfulness. ‘Will the Lord cast off for ever? And will he be favourable no more? Is his mercy clean gone for ever (ceased completely)? Doth his promise fail for evermore (for all generations)? Hath God forgotten to be gracious? Hath he in anger shut up his tender mercies?   Selah.’ (Ps.77:7-9)  

Yes friends, many believers in times of trouble and testing ask those questions since they can’t seem to find any help from God. But listen to Bruh David as he provides a positive answer in Psalm 36 – The steadfast LOVE of God. 

‘Thy mercy (LOVING-kindness) O Lord, is in the heavens; and thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds. Thy righteousness is like the great mountains; thy judgements are a great deep (ocean): O Lord, thou preservest man and beast. How excellent (precious) is thy LOVING-kindness, O God! 

Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings. They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness (fullness) of thy house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures. For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.’ (Ps.37:5-9)  

There we have it precious people of God! Our Creator will always look after us once we come to Him for succour. So please, let’s put away all doubts, fears and anxieties and instead wrap ourselves in the wonderful blanket of His LOVE, care, compassion, understanding, wisdom, grace, mercy, forgiveness and faithfulness! 

Wow! Now tell me which other supposed God has all those attributes eh? None whatsoever! So let’s be wise and just bask in His sunshine nuh, for that’s wisdom to the infinite power! Much LOVE!

…when the bright and beautiful light of Jesus shines on us…there’s no option but to be engulfed in it…

 

 

 

 

 

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