Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 April 2018 2 Peter 1:4.

2 Peter 1:4.    Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

Oh friends, this salutation seemed like the best way to begin today’s message, as it runs with our Bit. And if it was good enough for Peter, it’s good enough for me. (smile) Randy O’Brien, ‘a servant of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like (the same kind of) precious faith with us through the righteousness of (our) God and Saviour Jesus Christ.  Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through (in) the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, 

According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to (by) glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.’ (2 Peter 1:1-4) 

Oh my fellow believers, you all hear that? Through our belief in Jesus Christ, we’ve been given ALL things that pertain to life and godliness, accompanied by ‘great and precious promises’ which help us get away, and stay away from the lustful and licentious behaviour of this evil world. Wow! What could be better than that eh friends? NOTHING REALLY! 

The Lord has implanted His Holy Spirit to dwell in ALL believers, and the power of the third person of the Holy Trinity provides ALL that we need, or will ever need to be successful in this life. Please remember that, and seriously take hold of it nuh. 

The fruit of the Spirit has already been planted in us, all we have to do now is ask the Lord to help us water and nurture them so that they can grow and show up in our lives, so that we can be good examples to the world, salt and light, and glorify and exalt His most precious and Holy Name! Glory be my brethren! 

And we going to continue looking at some of God’s promises today. And this is one of my favourite, because I am currently living it. The immortal and oh so true words of Bruh David. ‘Trust in the Lord and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed (feed on his faithfulness). 

Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgement (justice) as the noonday.’ (Ps.37:3-6)

Oh friends, if it’s one thing I can testify to is the Lord’s faithfulness. Although I’ve been going through a rough time medically this past year and a half, with no real relief in sight, you wouldn’t believe how the Lord has been blessing me during this time, surprisingly making some of the desires of my heart come to pass. Brother! Is he ever a wonderful God! 

The problem with most of us is that we expect something for nothing – both from man and God. But that’s not real life my people! Generally speaking, you get back when and what you give. As Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) likes to say; ‘You reap what you sow, more than you sow, and later than you sow.’ That’s just a fact of nature! 

That brings us to this awesome but also frightening promise: ‘For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (Romans 6:23) Yeh mih breddren, if you insist on following the sinful, lustful world, death will be your eventual reward. 

However, if you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour and do your best to be obedient to His rules and principles, then you will receive the most wonderful gift there is; that of salvation and everlasting life with Christ. As the scholars tell us: ‘6:23. Wages: Emphasizes what we deserve. Gift of God: Emphasizes God’s unmerited favour.’ 

Yuh see the difference friends? One is what you deserve; the other is mercy, giving you something good that you don’t deserve. And please remember that salvation is indeed a gift from God, we can’t do anything to deserve it. All the good works we do mean nothing unless we believe in Christ as Lord and Saviour, for that’s the way the Lord set it up, so that none of us could boast about our good works. 

And that, I think, brings us to the end of these messages on the promises of God. I implore us to study them and take them to heart, because as Peter says, they’ve been given to us so that we can lead a good and prosperous life here on earth. Please don’t let them go to waste, and then complain about your bad luck and other negative situations. Then you only have yourself to blame. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings which have been showered down on us because we have tried to be obedient to God’s law and have taken up and held on to His many generous promises. All together now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! 

I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! 

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

And one of God’s most important laws is for us to now go out and share those blessings with the less fortunate! Much LOVE!

…promises…promises…I’m standing on the promises of Christ my God…

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 March 2018 Isaiah 30:18.

Isaiah 30:18.   And therefore will the Lord wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore he will be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the Lord is a God of judgement (justice): blessed are all they that wait for him.

Well friends, I slept in my own bed last night, and it wasn’t half bad! At least the ole back isn’t aching nearly as much as that unforgettable night I spent in the hospital, and it was much easier to get up from too. Glory to God! So this morning we’re back to the daily task and common grind and I just have to wait and see what the Lord has in mind now. 

Over the past year I’ve been trying my best to get some closure on my major illnesses, but all to no avail. And for a moment there, I thought the Lord had finally decided it was time to do what seemed necessary, but obviously I was wrong. 

And as He is so famous for doing, He even led me to this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin simply titled ‘I Will Wait.’ Yuh get the message? (smile) 

Please pray with me: ‘O Lord Today I must face it honestly with You By pursuing the persistent questions within me. God, is there any gain at all by my doubting? Do doubts make me stronger? Do they purify my heart? Fortify my will? Are my emotions firmly established by my doubts? Are my family and friends encouraged? 

On the other hand, God Even though I see no possible way out Of the catastrophe I now face Is there anything more pleasing to You Than my personal choice to trust You? I know it is true, Lord I must rely on Your promises in the end. Would You be glorified, dear God If I trusted You now at the early beginning? 

O God, forgive me For so limiting You. Surely you know exactly what you will do. You are God, so You will not alter Your Word. Your power is instantly operative In all the strange twisting of my life. You are God, so You are good. I will hope I will trust I will wait On the living God!’ 

Yeh mih people, that is a lesson we must all learn if we are to be faithful believers. And I’ve learned it a tad in a hard manner over the last couple days. What seems to be our truth, isn’t always God’s. And what seems to be our time, isn’t always His either. We just have to learn to wait expectantly and with a good attitude until He finally decides to allow whatever He thinks is necessary to happen. 

And that’s not always easy, especially when it’s to do with sickness. But from my experiences in this past year, I can definitely say that God is good! I’ve had plenty of ups and downs, but there was always some mitigating factor to ease the downs. He never just left me alone to go through my problems by myself. I could always see His hand working in the background, possibly not as much or how I would have liked, but I could always sense His presence. 

And even when He was not alleviating my sickness, I could still feel His hand of LOVE moving as He gave me some of my heart’s desires. They certainly made up for some of the disappointment with the illness. That’s why today, I can testify that we serve such a wonderful God! He doesn’t always do what we want or when we want it, but He ALWAYS comes through in the end! 

And though I’ve had this setback with the heart problem, I know that eventually, when He is good and ready, He will make all things right. Give Him thanks and praise, my people, exalt His holy name for He is certainly good to us, sinful and undeserving children of men! 

And I have to chuckle here, because I never really intended to testify, but the Lord seems to have drawn it out of me unconsciously. And not only that, but the Lord has just shown me our doubting Thomas’ way, because from the very beginning I’ve been praying for a miracle, where I’d have to go through no invasive surgery, but now that it might have happened, I can’t truly believe or accept it. 

And that’s how we are friends; we pray for big things but when they do happen, we find it difficult to accept them. But just remember that our God is a Big God and He can do ANYTHING. So if we pray big prayers, let’s not be surprised when they happen. 

And the scripture promise for our poem today is also our Bit; wise and wonderful words of the prophet Isaiah as he appeals to his people to turn to the Lord for help. ‘And therefore will the Lord wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore he will be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the Lord is a God of judgement (justice): blessed are all they that wait for him.’ 

Yes friends, if God can wait for us, so can we wait for Him. And remember it’s all for our benefit, not for His. The scholars offer this wise explanation. ’30:18-33. Because God is gracious and has been willing to wait for His people to return to Him, He will certainly bless those who wait for him. “Waiting” is a confident and dependent trust in God.’ And so it is my brethren. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail in strong voice and sincere sense of purpose, letting the world know that we are truly and seriously involved with our God and Friend, Jesus. Altogether now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And it will indeed be a glorious future, more mind boggling than we can ever think or imagine! Much LOVE!

…Wait (in faith)…on the Lord…and he shall strengthen thine heart…wait (in faith)…I say…on the Lord. (Ps.27:14)

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 January 2018 Psalm 107:29.

Psalm 107:29.    He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still.

Oh mih people, I know that this Monday morning as many of us are struggling to get up and go to work under difficult circumstances, we are also asking; ‘Wherefore art thou sweet Jesus?’ You can include me in that lot. (smile) That’s because we expect Jesus to solve our every problem without any suffering on our part, or at least a minor amount. 

But He never promised that there wouldn’t be rough times. In fact, He told us to expect them, even if it’s only because we believe in Him. What He did promise is that He would see us through the storms of life, hold our hands, and bring us out safely on the other side. 

So let’s not get all up in arms against our Lord and Saviour if we are experiencing trying times this morning. Instead let’s put all our confidence in Him, in His faithful promises. For if He gave up His sinless life for us, why wouldn’t He help us through our dark times eh? And to help boost our spirits, let’s declare our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with strong voice and nuff sincerity. 

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

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

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

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

Oh friends, it never ceases to amaze me how that prayer can cause the adrenaline to flow and our spirits to be lifted! So let’s be wise and ride it out nuh, do our thing for Jesus, whatever it may be, and stay strong under His protection and guidance, for He is the ONLY One who can truly protect us from the storms of life. 

Hear this telling and truthful scripture from Psalm 107 – God’s wonderful works to the children of men – that includes our Bit. ‘They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. 

For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble. They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wit’s end (all their wisdom is swallowed up). 

Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, and he bringeth them out of their distresses. He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then are they glad because they be quiet: so he bringeth them unto their desired haven.’ (Ps.107:23-30) 

Yuh see friends, the seafarers knew exactly what the psalmist was talking about, because they experienced it all the time. And I too can testify to that scripture, as I got caught out on the stormy Lake Ontario some years ago, and believe me, it was indeed a frightening scene. 

Out in the middle of the lake in a relatively small boat, surrounded by four scared, drunken men. Only the skipper and I were sober, as the boat dangled up and down between the great waves. But obviously the Lord calmed the stormy waves, and I am still here to tell the story. 

I thought I had seen bad storms on the ocean, but that one on Lake Ontario took the cake. As I’ve said before, I’d read about the shivering of timbers on a boat in a storm, but that fateful day I experienced it in living colour. And let me tell you, it wasn’t one I’d like to experience again. 

And the best way to end today’s Bit is with this actual story of Jesus as he crossed the Sea of Galilee in a boat with His disciples. On the way over a violent storm arose, but Jesus didn’t budge, he remained asleep. However, the disciples were scared out of their minds and ‘came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. 

And he saith unto them, why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!’ (Matthew 8:25-27) 

Oh my fellow believers, we shouldn’t have to ask that question because we ought to know whom Jesus is – The Son of Almighty God, who made the universe and all therein, therefore He has control over it all. Consequently, He can also quiet the storms in our lives, if we would just let Him. Much LOVE!

…let God be God…in your life…that’s the only wise way to live…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 January 2018 1 John 4:11.

1 John 4:11.   Beloved, if God so LOVED us, we ought also to LOVE one another.

And then it was Tuesday, the 2nd day of January 2018, and the festivities have been abruptly curtailed! Hn! It’s time to get back to the common task and daily grind, or however they say it. Reality has finally hit home! 

It’s time to go back to work and consider how we’re going to pay the enormous bills we’ve run up over the holiday season. Some of us are liable to drop down dead when we see the bills. But not to worry, whatever foolishness we’ve done can be rectified if we take it to Jesus. 

Remember His awesome 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 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.11:28-30) 

Oh my people, no one in this great wide world has ever offered such a sincere invitation, with the power to back up every word. So if this morning you’re straining under any kind of pressure at all, the wisest thing you can do is take it to Jesus in humble prayer and supplication. 

He will NOT, will NEVER turn you away, for He’s also faithfully promised: ‘I’ll never leave nor forsake you.’ But He can’t do anything for you until you turn to Him and ask for His help. 

Now He might not just wave away your problems, although He has the power to do so, but He’ll surely show you a way to handle them without a backbreaking effort and give you the grace and mercy to see it all through. That’s His promise and He doesn’t renege on any of His promises. 

Remember too friends, that we’ve dedicated 2018 to be the Year of LOVE…and where does true LOVE come from, where is its fountainhead? Jesus Christ! And we’ve also declared that we only need ONE New Year’s Resolution; that of following Christ more closely than ever. 

Therefore, using all that simple logic, (smile) no rocket science involved, it’s easy to deduce that ALL wise roads lead to Christ, for He is the ONLY One who’s inviting us to bring our problems to Him, and the ONLY One who has the power to solve them, and/or take us safely through them. 

Oh, and don’t forget our motto: EACH ONE LOVE ONE! Yeh mih breddren, each and every day, we’re supposed to LOVE at least ONE person. But please don’t just stop at one, the more the merrier. That brings us to our Bit. ‘Beloved, if God so LOVED us, we ought also to LOVE one another.’ 

Oh my fellow believers no greater truth has ever been spoken. Remember all the LOVE began with God! He first LOVED us, and so much, that He sent Jesus to die for us. And as the scholars tell us: ‘4:10. No human LOVE is the standard for understanding God’s great compassion, but God’s own action on man’s behalf.’ 

And here is some interesting reasoning from John, as he continues after our Bit. ‘No man hath seen God at any time. If we LOVE one another, God dwelleth in us, and his LOVE is perfected in us. Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. 

Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the LOVE that God hath to us. God is LOVE; and he that dwelleth (abides) in LOVE dwelleth (abides) in God, and God in him.’ (1 John 4:12-16) 

Oh precious people of God, that scripture is so rich in nutrients, that I doubt we have time and space to pull them all out. But let’s see what nuggets we can get in what time we have nuh. Hear the scholars: ‘4:11-13. God’s character, through His Spirit, is to shape and progressively dominate the character of the believer. The Spirit of God imparts the will to LOVE.’ 

Yeh friends, all this LOVING business presupposes that you are a believer in Christ, and have received the life changing and saving gift of His Holy Spirit to dwell in you. Otherwise NONE of this will work. The Holy Spirit is the catalyst that raises up our LOVE quotient. 

‘4:15. This helps provide the context for rightly understanding verse 7 (our Bit from yesterday). Trust in Christ as the incarnate Son of God makes genuine, God-wrought LOVE possible’ Oh people, only through a sincere trust in Jesus Christ can we ever achieve the LOVE that comes from God. 

‘4:16. John, like Paul (1 Cor.13:13), stresses the supremacy of LOVE as a characteristic of God and therefore as a dominant characteristic of the true believer.’ 

And unfortunately my brethren, although we might talk a lot about LOVE, it just doesn’t dominate the Church of Christ and its followers as it should. That’s why we’re talking about it and trying to build our knowledge and thus sincere participation in it, for only as the true LOVE of God is present far and wide in our individual societies and our world, will they be any good.  

Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, telling the world who and whose we are. In strong, sincere voice now. ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world. Amen!’ 

And the next step is to go out and action that last statement. Much LOVE!

…without the LOVE of Jesus in our hearts…mankind is just another mindless wild animal…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 November 2016 Psalm 28:7.

Psalm 28:7.    The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.

And then it was Friday… And mama yo, I couldn’t stand the noise in mih ears, the raucous singing of ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! We going to be jamming all weekend! Is fete and more fete! We drinking…drinking from dusk till dawn! We doh care who vex… For as they say, who vex loss. Thank God is Friday yes! Thank God for the weekend oui!’ 

Oh friends, sadly, that is the pleasure seeking attitude of a large portion of our society towards the weekend. 

Ah Lord eh! They think it’s okay to waste it in wine, women and song, but that’s a serious fallacy. The weekend is for some enjoyment yes, but not totally. But try as we can, we can’t get that segment of our population to give up their licentious and ungodly ways on the weekend. 

Anyhow, we have a different song we sing; our Friday Chant, which shows a better and godlier way to use the weekend. Let’s chant it in all sincerity now nuh. In unison: ‘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 people, that is indeed the better way to celebrate the weekend! We need to refresh ourselves for another week of work, not continue to stress and strain our already frail minds and bodies. 

But we can only do those kinds of things when we have a sincere faith and trust in the ONE and ONLY TRUE and LIVING God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Where we can confidently say like Bruh David does in our Bit: ‘The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.’ 

Oh my people, my people, when that kind of confidence dwells in us, then our spiritual strength is so strong, that we can certainly move mountains with the Lord’s help! 

Look at the amount of negative circumstances Bruh David overcame, not because he was a saint, but because he held God in the greatest esteem possible and always communicated with Him, regardless of the circumstances. 

That’s how we need to live in these uncertain and confusing times my brethren! Without God at the forefront of our lives, we stand little chance of getting through this life successfully. 

But enough of me, (smile) let’s get to some scripture which emphasizes what we’re talking about; trust and confidence in Almighty God. Listen to Bruh David from Psalm 13 – How long, O Lord, how long? 

‘But I have trusted in thy mercy (LOVING-kindness); my heart shall rejoice in thy salvation. I will sing unto the Lord, because he hath dealt bountifully with me.’(Ps.13:5-6) 

Oh friends, I can certainly testify to that, because the Lord has indeed dealt bountifully with me. Glory to God! It doesn’t mean you have an easy life – in fact it’s often more difficult as the Lord tests you, but the rewards, the adventure and pleasure involved, are certainly worth the trials He might put you through. 

Now hear Bruh David again, this time from Psalm 112 – Blessed is the man that feareth the Lord. ‘A good man showeth favour (is gracious), and lendeth: he will guide his affairs with discretion. 

Surely he shall not be moved (shaken) for ever: the righteous shall be in everlasting remembrance. He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed (steadfast), trusting in the Lord. His heart is established, he shall not be afraid, until he see his desire upon his enemies. 

He hath dispersed (distributed abroad), he hath given to the poor; his righteousness endureth for ever, his horn (strength) shall be exalted with honour. The wicked shall see it, and be grieved; he shall gnash with his teeth, and melt away: the desire of the wicked shall perish.’ (Ps.112:5-10) 

That is what happens my brethren when we seek the Lord first in everything that we do. Now let’s end with some more confident words from Bruh David from Psalm 18 – Thanksgiving for deliverance. 

‘The Lord liveth; and blessed be my Rock; and let the God of my salvation be exalted. It is God that avengeth me, and subdueth the people under me. He delivereth me from mine enemies: yea, thou liftest me up above those that rise up against me: thou hast delivered me from the violent man. 

Therefore will I give thanks unto thee, O Lord, among the heathen (Gentiles), and sing praises unto thy name. Great deliverance giveth he to his king; and showeth mercy to his anointed, to David, and to his seed (descendants) for evermore.’ (Ps.18:46-50) 

Ah friends, I do hope that all that positive scripture raised our confidence level and trust in Almighty God this Friday morning, and will allow us to rise to any occasion that comes our way, for that’s its purpose. Much LOVE!

…the Lord God works diligently on our behalf…when we diligently seek Him with a right heart… 

P.S. Let’s remember to keep on praying for Scotty, our Scrip-Bit family member who is currently in the hospital. I hear he’s doing a li’l better. So please, let’s keep bombarding heaven with our prayers for him. Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 October 2016 Romans 8:37.

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

One more day; one more day to be alive and kicking and enjoy God’s expansive favour! Oh what a joy that ought to be my people! Just to know that our names will not be read in today’s obituaries should bring forth a glorious song of thanks and praise to our heavenly Father. 

Consequently, our mouths should be uttering joyful and thankful words like the psalmist did: ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’ (Ps.118:24)

Yes friends, the Lord has kept us alive for a purpose; to continue the good work He has planned for our lives, and also to enjoy the fruits of our labour. 

Now here’s a wise li’l secret from my ‘P.S. I LOVE YOU’ Poster: ‘Dreams come true for those who work while they dream.’ 

Yes my brethren, in this life we ought not to just sit and wait for things to happen, for God to just bring them to pass, but we must also do our part in the wonderful partnership we share with Almighty God. 

Remember it’s a two way street; we do what we can, and wait patiently, enthusiastically and expectantly for God to do His part. We don’t just rest on our fannies and expect it to fall into our laps. 

Now let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with sincere enthusiasm and thankfulness because the reality of the situation is exactly what it deserves. 

As one 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 my people, my people, what a glorious truth! We aren’t what the world says or thinks about us, but we are God’s beloved, and Jesus’ friend! Wow! That means the world cannot beat or defeat or do us any real harm, because we are God’s people! 

Oh what a triumphant blessing! But please remember the last part of that declaration; we need to share the LOVE of Jesus with the rest of the world. That’s our bounden duty. 

And it all rolls right into sync with our wonderful Bit: ‘Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us.’ 

Ah friends, how much more favoured can we be eh? Not much more really. We are God’s flock, and He LOVED us so much that He sent His only son Jesus to die on the cross at Calvary so that we could be reconciled unto Him. How wonderful is that eh! 

And today we’re going to continue looking at the portion of our Bit that deals with LOVE. And John the apostle deals with it wonderfully in His first epistle. Let’s listen some to him. 

‘No man hath seen God at any time. If we LOVE one another, God dwelleth in us, and his LOVE is perfected in us. Hereby we know that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit. 

And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.’ (1 John 4:12-15) 

Now here are some thoughts from the scholars. ‘4:11-13. God’s character, through His Spirit, is to shape and progressively dominate the character of the believer. The Spirit of God imparts the will to LOVE.’ 

Yuh see that friends? If we don’t have the Spirit of God within us, then we won’t have the capacity to truly embrace the emotion of LOVE. 

‘4:15. This helps provide the context for rightly understanding verse 7. Trust in Christ as the incarnate Son of God makes genuine, God-wrought LOVE possible.’ 

And if we don’t remember what verse 7 says, let’s refresh our memories. ‘Beloved, let us LOVE one another: for LOVE is of God; and every one that LOVETH is born of God, and knoweth God.’ (1 John 4:7) 

That means friends, that only those who truly believe that Jesus is the Son of God, can possess the LOVE of God. Now let’s continue with John’s theorizing. 

‘And we have known and believed the LOVE that God hath to us. God IS LOVE; and he that dwelleth (abides) in LOVE dwelleth (abides) in God, and God in him.’ (1 John 4:16) 

And hear the scholars explain that. ‘4:16. John, like Paul (1 Cor.13:13), stresses the supremacy of LOVE as a characteristic of God and therefore as a dominant characteristic of the true believer.’ 

Is LOVE a dominant characteristic of our lives my people? I surely do hope so, otherwise we’re just being hypocrites like the pseudo-religious Pharisees of old. 

And we’ll end with this very important verse. ‘Herein is our LOVE made perfect (LOVE made perfect among us), that we may have boldness in the day of judgement: because as he is, so are we in this world.’ (1 John 4:17) 

Yes friends, when true LOVE exists among us, then our confidence rises to its zenith! 

The scholars explain that verse thus. ‘4:17. Herein points back to verse 16. By dwelling in LOVE, and thus having God dwelling in him, the believer gains the priceless assurance that he need not fear the coming judgement. This is our assurance, if we LOVE in this world as He does.’  

Oh friends, the importance of LOVE, within each individual believer, and consequently between all believers can never be overstated, for it’s the supreme characteristic by which the true believers in Almighty God and true followers of Christ are known. 

Please, let’s critically examine ourselves today, and see how our own characteristic of LOVE shapes up, and then, ask God to help us do better, for we can all do better. Much LOVE!

…and now abideth…faith, hope, LOVE…these three…but the greatest of these is LOVE… (1 Cor.13:13)

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 September 2016 Hebrews 12:2.

 Hebrews 12:2.    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 the throne of God.

Well my faithful brethren, we’ve been treated to yet another glorious day on God’s great earth! Wow! I sincerely hope that we gave much thanks when we awakened to this bright new day, for the Lord deserves our gratefulness for all the blessings He bestows on us, His beautiful children. (smile) 

Remember His tender mercies are new every morning; we don’t get yesterday’s leftovers. So please, let’s not forget to lift our voices in praise and thanks every time we open our eyes to a new morn. It is very mete and right to do so. 

Now listen to something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that is ever so appropriate to many of us believers. It’s simply called ‘EXCUSES.’  

And it says: ‘O God I’ve become a self-educated master Of a thousand polished excuses. Hoping to avoid your penetrating gaze I clutch them to me like valuable gems. When I think I have myself thoroughly covered I’m caught short with the realization That You see right through me. My flimsy excuses are never really hidden. 

I find an excuse for all my failures Wrong choices Late appointments Wasted time. I excuse my foolish blunders, my laziness My broken resolves, my unreached goals. I need Your help, Lord! To hide from You is as foolish As the Grand Canyon Attempting to hide from the sky. 

O God, my only hope Lies in Your invincible power To make me what I am not yet But what You know I can become. Strengthen my will, Lord. Make me firm, steadfast, consistent. Control my impulses, my emotions. May I keep pursuing and never quit.’ 

Oh friends, unfortunately many of us believers try to hide or run from God with flimsy excuses, but common sense ought to tell us that we can never run or hide from a Deity that’s omnipotent, omniscient and omni-present, for He sees and hears all. His vision is so powerful that it can see right down into the very depths of our being and discern our motives, good or bad. 

So please let’s wise up and stop trying to run and hide from our heavenly Father nuh. We might be able to do it with our earthly fathers, but definitely not with the One above. And to help us do that, let’s declare our Wednesday Wail with enthusiasm, sincerity and truth. 

As one strong voice now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Oh my people, it’s so good to be alive, to feel that glorious breath of God just flowing through my body, letting me know that I am alive; alive and LOVED! Consequently, I’m not looking back, but focusing on the wonderful future that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ has planned for me! 

Glory to our most magnificent and magnanimous God! What a wonderful God we serve and worship my people! It never ceases to amaze me. 

Now let’s turn to our Bit, which is the scripture promise attached to the poem above. ‘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 the throne of God.’ 

Oh my brethren, what wonderful words of advice! As we said above, our eyes and hearts ought to be focused exclusively on Jesus! Why? Because He is indeed the originator and perfecter of our faith! He began it all, and He will end it all! 

And the first verse of the chapter, that before our Bit, gives us the basic reason for looking unto Jesus. ‘Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about (surrounded by) with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside very weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance) the race that is set before us.’ (Heb.12:1) 

Yeh friends, the author of Hebrews, which I firmly believe is Bruh Paul, uses the metaphor of a race to describe our earthly pilgrimage. Now hear is how the scholars break down that verse. 

’12:1. The present exhortation to run finds its basis in the examples of the champions mentioned in chapter 11. These heroes of the faith are like a cloud of witnesses. As “witnesses: (Gr. marturon) they are sometimes regarded as spectators (Gr. theatai) or as martyrs; yet this Greek word should be understood as referring simply to those who testify or witness. The emphasis is on the witness provided by their living by faith. 

The race of faith is described by three modifying statements. First, it is to be run by laying aside every weight. This refers to the impediments that weigh one down, whether clothing or excessive body weight. These things are not inherently wrong, but for the diligent runner or the faithful Christian they must be removed. 

Second, it is to be run by putting off the entangling sin. This seems to refer to the one sin above all others that defeats a Christian. This may be a different sin for each individual. Third, it is to be run with patience (Gr. hypomones).  

Since patience is not an attribute commonly associated with running, this word would be better translated as endurance (as it is in the cognate verb forms of vv. 2 –3). Endurance and persistence have been on the author’s mind since the end of chapter 10 (cf. 10:32; 36-38; 11:13).’ 

Now hear some words from the scholars on our Bit. ’12:2. Just as verse 1 establishes some qualities for the entrance into and the actual running of life’s race, so verse 2 directs one’s eyes to the finish line. Jesus is the author and finisher in that He has already blazed the trail and finished the course.’ 

Oh my people, this earthly race is often difficult to run, and to do it successfully we need to keep our eyes trained on Jesus, because He is the One who first ran the race and successfully completed it. In other words, He laid a path for us to follow. So please, let’s be wise and follow it nuh. Much LOVE!

…only as we stick to the path laid down by Jesus…with endurance and perseverance…can we run life’s race successfully…  

P.S. Please excuse the lateness of the Bit, but I had a rather late night, which means a late morning too. (smile)

 

 

 

 

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