Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 April 2018 John 17:15.

John 17:15.    I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil (one).

And as one working day morphs into the next, we suddenly discover that it’s Friday…but another Friday with a twist; Friday the 13th, considered by many as an unlucky day, where all sorts of disasters happen. Hn! 

For a society that prides itself on being so advanced in our thinking, we surely don’t seem so forward thinking when we consider the many superstitions we still live under, like believing that 13 is an unlucky number, and Friday the 13th is a day unleashed from hell itself. 

And the sad part is that no one really knows where most of these superstitions originated from, but they do abound in the most advanced society of mankind’s long history. But that particular superstition seems lost on the ordinary workingman as he sings his Friday Song. 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday…and we don’t care if is Friday the 13th or whatever you want to call it. As far as we concern, Friday is the beginning of our party time, freedom from the bondage of work. So you can do what you want with your superstitions and them, but they won’t stop our having a good time come Friday. Wow! The weekend is here at last! Party animals get ready! As we thank God for Fridays and the weekend!’ 

Ah mih people, what a crazy world we live in, one where almost anything goes, as in the workingman’s song. But as followers of Jesus, we Christians cannot afford to be so footloose and fancy free. Yes, we are allowed to party and have fun, but with some rules and restrictions, where the workingman has none whatsoever. 

We’re in a spiritual battle for our eternal lives, and if we cater to the hedonism and licentiousness of the world we can get ourselves in serious trouble by allowing the enemy to breech our walls. That’s why Jesus set some boundaries for His followers. And consequently, our Friday Chant differs substantially from the workingman’s song. Let’s chant it now nuh with heartfelt gratitude. 

‘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.’ 

Oh my believing brethren, we can never be reminded too often of the necessity to keep ourselves out of the evil clutches of Lucifer’s world, because he and his cronies are always looking for a way to inveigle us into something that doesn’t fit our status and standard as believers.

That’s why Jesus prayed in our Bit: ‘I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil (one). 

Yeh friends, Jesus doesn’t want us to be taken out of the world, because we can only spread the good news of His gospel by being IN the world, but we should not be OF the world. In other words, a part of the evil world system, for how can we change it, if we are a part of it eh? Not very likely. So precious people of God, we need to live IN the world, but not do as the world does. 

As Bruh Paul wrote to the church at Rome: ‘And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind; that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.’ (Rom.12:2) 

Oh my people, please remember that the battle for supremacy is basically waged in the mind, so whatever the mind holds worthy, that is what we will do. That’s why, when we are born again we have to transform our minds, change our way of thinking from that of the world, to that of Christ, so that we can do God’s perfect will. 

And James puts it thus: ‘Pure religion and undefiled before God the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.’ (James 1:27) 

Oh friends, it is indeed difficult to keep ourselves unspotted from the world since it is so all-pervasive, abounding in every aspect of our lives. But if we are sincere and try our best, with God’s help, we certainly can. Now let’s close with these beautiful and encouraging words of John from His first epistle. 

‘LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.’ (1 John 2:15-17) 

How very true all of that is my fellow believers! All the stuff that the world holds dear will eventually be destroyed, but God’s will won’t.

So please, let’s stop kowtowing to the things of the world nuh; stop engaging in the lustful aspects of our sinful human frailty, stop allowing our flesh, our eyes and our pride to make us a part of the world. That’s wisdom at its highest level! Much LOVE!

…only by following God’s will…can believers be IN the world…but not OF the world…

 

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 April 2018 Proverbs 4:23.

Proverbs 4:23.    Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

May untold blessings befall you and your families this Friday morning my Scrip-Bit friends! May the Lord open the windows of heaven, as He has promised, and shower down his awesome blessings on us all as we walk in His wise and wonderful will for our lives! 

What a magnificent and magnanimous God we serve my brethren! Please don’t ever forget that. Even the workingman in his own way acknowledges that as he proclaims in his song.

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! This week was a rough week, what with all the Easter partying and carryings ons! We really had to come up strong, because massa was in a nasty mood…too much paid time off and all that nuh. 

But now that the weekend reach, we can feel the party spirit rise to the forefront once again. And believe you me, we going to party as hearty as we can for the next two days. Thank God for Fridays and weekends, because it was meant for partying!’ 

Ah friends, the workingman’s heart is in the right place, but he’s somewhat misguided; the weekend wasn’t just meant for licentiousness and flagrant worldly behaviour, but more so for rest and relaxation and renewing of our spirits, hence our Friday Chant. 

‘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, it’s all about building, about furthering God’s kingdom here on earth; that’s our mission, and we can’t do it properly if we’re too taken up with the lustful ways of our flesh and the world.

So though, deep down we might want to party hearty like the workingman, we realize that that is not permissible in Jesus’ economy, we must have some boundaries to keep the enemy out of our lives, live them always with an ounce of circumspection. 

That’s why Cousin Sol warns us in our Bit today: Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.’ Words of awesome truth my people! And why is that you ask? 

Hear the scholars’ explanation. ‘4:23. The Old Testament word ‘heart’ often refers to the physical organ of the circulatory system. Both Testaments also see the heart figuratively as the centre of the personality or spiritual life.

The heart is the seat of the intellect, emotions, will, and moral consciousness. It is the personality which has that extraordinary ability to perceive itself. The heart is presented as the seat of conscious life and the fountainhead of life. 

Illustration: Jesus taught that sin came out of the heart of people, thus defining them (Mark 7:21-23). Yet after conversion, one of the characteristics of Christians is that they have the law of God written in their hearts. (Heb.8:8-12).

Application: Christians should LOVE the Lord with all their hearts (Matt.22:37). (First Ref. Gen.6:5; Primary Ref. Prov.4:23; cf. Rom.2:15).’ 

Yeh friends, our hearts are figuratively the controlling device of our souls. Listen to Jesus on the subject. ‘O generations (brood, or offspring) of vipers, how can ye being evil, speak good things?

For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth for evil things.’ (Matt.12:34-35) 

Ah my fellow believers, it’s what inside of us that colours us, not what’s on the outside. It’s like whatever you put in a clear plastic bag, the colour of the contents will manifest itself though the plastic.

Likewise, we can look all clean and rosy on the outside but are truly dirty and evil on the inside, and it’s that dirty and evil stuff that will eventually come out into the open. You can only hide it for so long. 

Now hear Jesus as He admonishes the disciples, when they asked for an explanation of His remarks about the blind leading the blind. ‘Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out (eliminated) into the draught? 

But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart, and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.’ (Matt.15:17-20) 

Oh friends, let’s seriously ponder those fateful words of our Lord and Saviour this Friday nuh, and truly see what’s in our hearts. Let’s look deeply and sincerely, and not fool ourselves, and then bring our problems to God for His awesome and always available help. That is indeed wisdom of untold proportions. Much LOVE!

…white-washing the outside…doesn’t mean the inside is clean…if it was dirty before…it’s still dirty afterwards…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 March 2018 John 5:24.

John 5:24.   Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death into life.  

Aye friends, can you believe it’s Friday already; the day we’ve waited for since Monday? (smile) Yes it is. And nobody is more grateful than the ordinary workingman as he shows his appreciation in his song. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! That means the weekend is here at last! Wow! That’s music to the workingman’s ears! No more slavish work; no more abuse from insensitive and greedy men. 

Is we time now! We time to do as we please, and how we please. And who don’t like what we do, or how we do it…chuh pool! Too bad for them. But we going to eat and drink and party and carouse to our heart’s desire. Thank God for Fridays and the weekend yes!’ 

Ah mih people, the workingman is surely letting it all hang out, but unfortunately as believers in Christ, we can’t go to those lengths in our song. We need to pay attention to certain boundaries and limit our licentious and carousing behaviour, so that the enemy won’t be able to get a foothold in our souls, thus the difference between the workingman’s song and our Friday Chant. 

So let’s chant our Friday Chant now nuh, with commensurate enthusiasm to that of the workingman, and without too much envy, for you know mankind is always more enthusiastic and vociferous when he can let go and show his true lustful and carnal self. (smile) 

All together now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yeh friends, as believers we can relax, but not totally lose our focus because that’s when the evil enemy jumps right in and spoils the broth. And we certainly can’t allow him to do that, hence our more careful and controlled reaction to the weekend. 

Please remember too that next week is Holy Week, one of the most important times in our Christian faith, one that culminates in the celebration of Easter, where our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, sacrificed His sinless life for us on the cross at Calvary, then rose triumphantly from the grave, so that all who believe in Him can also be resurrected. 

Glory to God my people!  What a wonderful God we serve and worship! And don’t you ever forget it, for you do so at your own risk. For please note these memorable words of Jesus on the situation, found in our Bit. ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death into life.’ 

Yes my brethren, Jesus is clearly telling us here that if we hear His word and believe on the Father who sent Him, then we’ll be guaranteed eternal life. However, if we reject the Father, then it’s cleaners for us; condemnation, judgement, eternal separation from Him. And He backs up all of that with some of His most profound and prophetic words from an earlier chapter of John. 

‘For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.’ (John 3:16-18) 

There we have it friends, loud and clear, straight from Jesus Himself. So there can be no argument over the situation; believe in Him and the Father, and you’re saved. Don’t believe, and you’re condemned! Simple as that! 

I guess though that it’s too simple for some people. Just believing in Christ to be saved seems too easy for us mortals who glorify great works and accomplishments filled with much elbow grease and backbreaking labour. So how can such a magnificent thing be so easily accomplished eh? 

Our simple and finite minds can’t get around the generosity and magnanimity of our great God. His LOVE for us, His most wonderful creation, is so great that He can’t bear to be separated from us for ever, so in His ultimate wisdom, He offers us a FREE GIFT of reconciliation and salvation to prevent that most horrible of outcomes. 

Now a lot of us think that offer’s too good to be true, and usually offers like that are insincere, but remember, this is not an offer from deceitful and distrustful men, but from Almighty God, your Creator and Controller. He has no reason to lie or deceive you, but offers You His salvation from the wellspring of His amazing LOVE. 

And since He also gave you choice and freewill, it’s yours to accept or reject. But my brethren, I beg of you to accept God’s most generous offer, for it’s wisdom of the greatest magnitude. And if you don’t…then…unfortunately…crapaud smoke yuh pipe…! Much LOVE!

…the first movement in Christ’s magnificent symphony is…BELIEF…to enjoy it therefore…one must first…BELIEVE…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 March 2018 1 Peter 5:8.

1 Peter 5:8.   Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.

Well, well, well, if it isn’t Friday, that much looked forward to day! And a grateful sigh can be heard all over the land. Hn, hn! How we do look forward to our couple of days off eh. And no one gets more excited about it than the ordinary workingman, as he sings his song and does his li’l jig. 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! The last day of work for this wretched week! The massa and foreman were both in nasty frame of minds, so they come down on us especially hard this week. Hn! But yuh know what? Is my time, we time now! Nobody to give us orders and talk to us rough and ready, like we foolish. 

For two whole long big days, we going to do exactly as we want. So as the man says…let the good times roll! Roll on good times…roll on! And thank God for Fridays and weekends, that give us a much needed break from the bondage of work!’ 

Yeh friends, some weeks of work are definitely harder than others, but as Christians, with God’s help, we are expected to take them all in stride. Our Lord and Saviour expects much more from us than the ordinary workingman. We have to be a glowing example to them of grace, and mercy, of LOVE and forgiveness. 

That means we have to come up higher, which isn’t always easy. Consequently, our Friday Chant is so much different to the workingman’s song. We can’t let our hair down completely as he can. We need to be more circumspect and conscious of the world around us. 

So let’s chant up a storm now nuh. In unison, with a strong sense of purpose: ‘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.’ 

Ah mih breddren, our faith dictates, that we, as Brother James Brown said so long ago, ‘stay on the good foot!’ (smile) Yes, we need to be on the lookout for anything that will try to turn us away from Jesus. And believe you me, there are indeed lots of things and people in this evil world that will be only too glad to do so. 

But please remember, we are soldiers in the army of Jesus, fighting against the evil spiritual foe, and every soldier is always temperate and cautious, on the lookout for the enemy, especially in the least expected places. That means we can’t go about this life in a willy-nilly fashion, but need to have our wits about us all the time, because the enemy is at work ALL THE TIME! 

Thus the call to remember Peter’s serious warning in our Bit: ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.’ 

Yeh mih people, the ole crook Beelzebub is always on the lookout for even the smallest way to cause trouble in our lives and steal our joy. And as Jesus said: ‘The thief cometh not, but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy…’ (John 10:10a) And that’s Lucifer’s whole purpose and intent, when he tries to get into our lives. 

However, Jesus continues: ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10b) So whom are you going to trust eh; someone who is only out to cause havoc, or someone who comes bringing joy and abundant life? Wisdom and common sense shout ‘Choose Jesus!’ 

Unfortunately though, a large portion of our world are listening to the evil voices that keep tantalizingly whispering in their ear; ‘Choose Lucifer…and get all the wealth, fame and power in the world!’ But yuh know what friends, those things are fleeting, just like the world is, and they will not last, nor bring you salvation or eternal life. 

So what happens to your spirit, when your body departs this mortal life and returns to the dust from whence it came eh? The ONLY thing possible then will be eternal separation from Almighty God and living in hell fire and damnation with Lucifer, whom you chose above Jesus. 

Let me remind us friends, that our mortal bodies will soon shrivel up and die, but our spirits will live forever. That means we need to make wise provision for eternal living. That’s all I can say. And we’ll end with the continued warning from Peter. 

‘Whom (the devil) resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet. 5:9-11) 

Yes my fellow believers, we will ALL suffer some in this world, but if we are serious about Jesus, through His grace we will be able to withstand the evil wiles and taunts of the enemy, and come out victorious. So please, let’s hang in there nuh, don’t lose faith, stand strong and steadfast, and keep Jesus first place in our lives. Much LOVE!

…so whom will you choose…as for me and mine….there’s no contest…we choose JESUS…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 March 2018 Romans 10:13.

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

Well dear friends, family and fellow believers, we’ve come to the end of another work week. Another enticing and heartily looked forward to Friday is upon us. And with it also comes the workingman’s enthusiastic though somewhat carnal song. 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! No more slaving for an evil and greedy massa for a couple of days. Wow! And are we ever going to enjoy them days off; eating, drinking, partying, relaxing, doing absolutely nothing if we want to, and also tearing up the place if we so desire. 

Is our time to do whatever we want, however we want with no overseer holding the proverbial whip above we heads, ready to lash we, if we step out of bounds! Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes, otherwise I don’t what we’d do nuh!’ 

Ah friends, how good it would be, if as Christians, we could sometimes just let it all hang out on the weekends, without any restraints or boundaries, do whatever we want, however and whenever we so desire. 

But our Lord and Saviour, Leader and King, Friend and Heavenly Advocate desires us to be on a different plane to the ordinary workingman. He wants us to concentrate on rising up to a higher spiritual level, that’s why our Friday Chant is so much different to his Friday song. 

And why is that you ask? Because He doesn’t want the evil enemy to infiltrate our souls and spirits and thereby lessen our LOVE for, and trust in Him. That would just ruin our witness and endanger our salvation, which He so expensively bought, sacrificed with His sinless life. So let’s chant up a storm now nuh, declaring our weekend duties and festivities. (smile) 

Altogether 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.’ 

Ah mih people, that doesn’t mean we don’t get to have fun, but just not the carnal, lustful, going all the way, illicit stuff that the world classifies as fun. We need to keep our wits about us, be disciplined, so that we can live out God’s word in the best possible manner. And anything that’s going to prevent us from doing it, is definitely not welcome in our lives. 

Oh by the way, let me clarify something I said in yesterday’s Bit. A friend challenged me about the validity of calling the storm in the U.S. ‘a wicked storm.’ He thought I meant the storm was evil, but that wasn’t so at all. In the vernacular, it just meant that it was a strong, terrible, severe, or bad storm. There was no intent whatsoever to classify it as evil. I just wanted to clarify that, in case any other of you readers felt the same way. 

Now here is today’s Bit. ‘For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ Simple but strong and truthful words my brethren! Whoever calls upon the Lord’s name and asked to be saved SHALL BE SAVED! No ifs ands or buts about it! 

Bruh Paul is here quoting the words of the prophet Joel from the Old Testament, when he talks about the outpouring of God’s spirit; namely the Holy Ghost coming to dwell in believers one day. (Joel 2:28-32) And we know that happened on the Day of Pentecost. (Acts 2:4) And on that momentous day, in his great sermon, Peter also quoted the words of Joel above. (Acts 2:17-21) 

Yeh friends, salvation is fairly easy, and free too. You just have to believe that Jesus died on the cross to pay for your sin, and then surrender your life and entrust it to Him to lead and guide you as He desires. But unfortunately for some, that’s too easy. Unless they have to suffer and sacrifice they figure they can’t attain heaven’s golden gates. 

But then you ask what exactly is salvation? Listen to the scholars. ‘10:13. Salvation is the most common biblical expression used to identify the subjective changes in people’s lives, when by faith they have received the benefit of the Christ’s death and resurrection. The term implies deliverance, safety, preservation, healing, and soundness. 

It occurs in Scripture in three phases. First, the Christian has been saved from the guilt and penalty of sin (Eph.2: 5,8). Second, the Christian is being saved from the habit and dominion of sin in this life (Gal.2:19-20). Finally, when the Lord returns, the Christian will be saved from all the physical results of sin and of God’s curse on the world (8:18-23). 

Illustration: Although Jesus used this word only once (Luke 19:9), He used many other expressions to describe salvation. The dramatic change in Zaccheus was proof of his salvation. Application: The Christian today should also demonstrate a change in his life to confirm this “so great salvation.” (First Ref. Gen.3:15; Primary Ref. Romans; cf. 2 Cor.5:19).’ 

Ah mih breddren, I do hope that explanation gives us a better understanding of what salvation is all about. And to reinforce it, one should take a moment and read the scripture references given there. I just did, and they do enlighten you as to our situation under God’s saving grace. Much LOVE!

…no sincere calls to heaven are ever refused…or turned away…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 February 2018 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.   Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Once again it’s Friday, and the children of men are suddenly enthused and invigorated because a spot of freedom looms large on the horizon before them. (smile) And there’s none more enthused and invigorated than the ordinary workingman as he proudly proclaims: 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday… And all the stars are aligned in my favour! The weekend is finally here…seems like it’s been taking forever…but now the party can begin. Wine, woman and song is the motto for this weekend. And who doh like it, tough tits, they know what they can do. Hn, hn! 

I slave whole week for a brutal, greedy man, and now yuh want to tell me I can’t enjoy mihself however I want to…Steups! Foolishness yes man! Just be thankful to God that we have a li’l break from new-fangled slavery come Fridays and the weekend yes!’ 

Ah Lord eh friends! The working world can certainly be rough, and I know that some of us believers would certainly like to join in the workingman’s party (smile) but out Leader, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ has a different idea for our supposed freedom. 

He doesn’t support the leggo beast theory, but prefers to keep it orderly with the boundaries philosophy. That’s why our Friday Chant is so different to the workingman’s song. Let’s chant it now nuh, so that we can uplift ourselves and also be reminded of what’s expected of us on the weekend. 

Altogether now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yeh friends, we have to rest and rejuvenate ourselves, so that come Monday we can get back out there and fight the good fight of faith in Jesus’ name, otherwise the enemy will just keep making inroads into our ranks, which we simply can’t afford to let happen. 

That’s why we need to be ever cautious about how we behave and talk, for negative words and inappropriate behaviour can turn people away from Christ, and what we so desperately desire to do is bring them to Him, not turn them away. 

That’s why Jesus commanded us in the Sermon from the Mount in today’s Bit: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, we ought to be a shining beacon for Christ in this world of almost total darkness, like the lighthouses of old, guided ships away from rocks and shoals, to safe harbours. 

As Jesus prefaced our Bit: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. 

A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (a lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lamp stand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt.5:13-15) 

That means we are to be essential to the world, like salt is, and allow the light of Jesus that dwells within us, to shine brightly forth, not hide it. Now listen to the scholars. ‘5:13. Jesus describes the basic character of the Christian’s life as salt and light. 

“Ye are” indicates that only the genuinely born-again person is salt and can help meet the needs of the world. Salt adds flavouring, acts as a preservative, melts coldness, and heals wounds. Thus it is a very appropriate description of the believer in his relationship to the world in which he lives.’ 

‘5:14-16. Ye are the light of the world describes the essential mission of the Christian to the world. He is the condition (salt) to meet the world’s needs and he has a mission (light) to the world. His light is to clearly shine forth into the darkness of human depravity. 

He is to set his light upon a candlestick, not hide it under a bushel, that is, a basket. Darkness is the absence of light; and darkness alone cannot dispel the light, but the smallest light can dispel the greatest darkness.’ 

There you have it friends; our condition; to help alleviate the world’s problems, and our mission; to shine our lights brightly forth in the overwhelming darkness that envelops it. The question now is, are we doing that to the best of our ability? And if we’re truthful, we will all say that we’re not. That’s why Lucifer and his dark, evil empire still has such a prominent hold on the world. 

Please my fellow believers, I’m imploring us today to put some much need flavour back into our salt, or just get some new salt, (smile) and let’s take the coverings off of our lights so that the light of Jesus that indwells us can shine forth and make a major difference in this dark and evil world. With the Lord’s help we can certainly do it. Much LOVE!

…oh…how the world is dying…to taste the Christian’s salt…and to see his bright light shining forth into its darkness…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 February 2018 Philippians 4:6.

Philippians 4:6.   Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

And then it was Friday…and a lot of grateful sighs punctuate the universal skies. None more enthusiastic and exuberant than that of the ordinary workingman: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui mih people! The end of backbreaking labour for a few days! Time to celebrate a li’l freedom from the cruel mental lash of the criminal slave master! 

Our time now is ours to do what we want with it. And believe you me, we going to do just that; we going to party and celebrate and be thankful for this short freedom from unfair work for unfair pay. And whatever happens after that happens! Who cares eh? Just be thankful for Fridays and the weekend that eases we pain!’ 

A lot of sad truth in there mih friends, but as believers, we are encouraged to handle the situation differently. We have Jesus in our corner, so though many of us might suffer the same injustice, we have a different recourse, a different way, to alleviate our problems. 

We turn to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, who has faithfully promised to look after us from the time we are saved until eternity. That’s why our Friday Chant differs so much from the workingman’s song. Let’s chant it now nuh, with heartfelt sincerity and a strong sense of purpose. 

‘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 faithful believers, our God wants us to abide within certain boundaries so that we can be rejuvenated and continue His awesome work without missing a beat. The workingman’s song invites Beelzebub and his carnal addictions, our Friday Chant invites Jesus and His eternal spiritual salvation. 

Wow! What a good and mighty difference! It frees us from having the judgement of Hades constantly hanging over our heads, like the infamous sword of Damocles, suspended by a single hair. Instead, as true believers we can focus on the wonders of heaven and the amazing life to come that Jesus promises. 

But that means sincerely following Him; consistently reading and meditating on His word, offering up prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, and generally being obedient to His law. And the good part is that He knows we’re not perfect, but He is ever so willing to work with us on becoming more mature and Christ-like. 

And in this season of Lent, where we seem to be somewhat more prayerful than at other times, (smile) I guess this is as good a time as any to remind us of Bruh Paul’s admonition to the Philippians, as reflected in our Bit. But first, the two verses before it. 

‘Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.’ (Phil.4:4-6) 

Ah mih breddren, what wonderful and wise advice! And the scholars have this to say about those verses. ‘4:4. The mention of believers’ names being recorded in heaven (v.3) causes the author to write rejoice in the Lord always. Harmony among church members, as Paul assumes will be the result of his plea in verses 2 and 3, is another reason to “rejoice.”  

In adding and again I say, rejoice, it is as though the apostle looks into the future, considers all possibilities of sorrow, and in spite of them all repeats “the command.” This command to rejoice at all times and in all circumstances is nothing less than a call to faith. For if the Christian believes that his life and all its circumstances are in the hands of a sovereign, wise and LOVING God who is always working to accomplish good for him, then he can indeed “rejoice always.” 

Oh friends, there is no disputing that logic! If we have the faith to believe it, then there’s all the more reason to rejoice! 

As for 4:5. Moderation means “graciousness” or “sweet reasonableness.” The believer who is at peace with his fellow Christian (v.2) and who rejoices always (v.4) is indeed a gracious, reasonable person. The Lord is at hand means two things. First, His return to earth is near. 

His imminent coming as a judge encourages the Christian to be “gracious” unto all men, for He will judge the believer for all his actions toward all people, and will avenge all wrongs committed by others against him. Second, the “Lord is at hand” spiritually. The Lord’s being presently near should free the Christian from fear and anxiety. Hence the command of verse 6.’ 

And that says: ‘4:6. Be careful for nothing means “don’t worry about anything.” The Lord’s nearness (v.5b) leads Paul to forbid his readers from worrying. This is no summons to irresponsibility or an invitation to dismiss legitimate concern. The solution to undue anxiety is to be prayerful about everything. While God is eager to hear our requests, they are to be accompanied with thanksgiving.’ 

And if we do all that, then ‘the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:7) 

Oh my people, what a glorious promise!  So today, let’s try and stop worrying and complaining nuh, for if we believe in our faith, then there is no reason for them.  Instead, let’s pray and give thanks nuh, because there’s a whole lot for us to be grateful about. Much LOVE!

…worrying and complaining invites Lucifer…prayer and thanksgiving… makes Jesus shine forth…

 

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