Today​’s Scrip-Bit 24 April 2019 Romans 8:5.

Romans 8:5.   ​For they that are after the flesh do mind (set their minds on) the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.
 
And then it was Wednesday…and everybody breathes a small sigh of relief, for Monday and Tuesday are now past, and it’s just Thursday to get through before the big day of Friday! 

Ah friends, so many of us waste our time looking towards the weekend that we don’t get to enjoy the weekdays! The Lord gave us seven days in a week, why only enjoy two or three eh? That way we’re wasting the majority of them and not realizing our full potential of joy and joyfulness that the Lord has made available to us. 

By now, most of us should be mature enough, both in age and faith to realize that work is inevitable, and if so, we should just get with the programme! Furthermore, if we truly have Jesus in our hearts, souls, bodies and minds, then we ought to be glad to have the chance to go out everyday and share Him and His Good News with others. Remember, that’s our earthly bounden duty. 

The long and short of the story is that the day of the week should not really matter, we ought to just get up and do what we have to do with a warm and LOVING spirit, even though the body might feel otherwise. Yes, the spirit is usually willing but the flesh is often weak!

Remember too that we’re no longer carnal, living just to glorify our fleshly needs and wants, but spiritual beings, living now to glorify spiritual desires. That means we’re to live life in the Spirit rather than in the flesh. 

And this is how Bruh Paul describes living life in the Spirit to the church at Rome. ‘There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.’ (Rom.8:1) Glory be my people! If we’re walking in the Spirit, then the law of sin, the law of fleshly matters no longer condemns us! 

Why? ‘For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.’ (Rom.8:3) Yes friends, that ‘law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus,’ is basically ‘the influence of the Holy Spirit in the believer’s life to obedience and good works.’ 

Yes, it’s all about the Holy Spirit of Christ moving and working successfully in our everyday lives, our everyday walk of faith! ‘For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for (on account of) sin, condemned sin in the flesh.’ (Rom.8:3) 

And the scholars explain that thus: ‘8:3. Law…was weak: There is nothing inherently wrong with the law. The presence of sin renders the believer powerless to do what the law demands. The likeness of sinful flesh: Christ was truly human but not a sinner. (2 Cor.5:21).’ 

And all of that happened ‘That the righteousness (righteous requirement) of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind (set their minds on) the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.’ (Rom.8:4-5) 

Yes friends, it’s as simple as that…note I didn’t say easy! (smile) But if the things and problems and anxieties of the world are what drive our engines, then we will obviously be more concerned about them.

However, if the things of the Spirit, the things of God, are our driving force then we will walk more appropriately in the Spirit and not fulfill the carnal lusts of the flesh. ‘For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.’ (Rom.8:6) 

Ah my faithful brethren, it could not be put any plainer and more straightforwardly than that! Why? ‘Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can it be.’ (Rom.8:7)

More simple logic friends! Carnality, or death, is not, nor can it be of God, because it involves sin, and God does not deal in Sin. Thus this conclusion: ‘So they that are in the flesh cannot please God.’ (Rom.8:8) 

Neither is trying to sit on the fence, having one foot in both worlds the answer, for as Jesus so rightly said: ‘Ye cannot serve God and mammon (at the same time).’ (Matt.6:24) You can’t serve both the world and God at the same time. Plus we ought to be in the world, but not of the world, and wherever our treasure is stored, there will our hearts be. 

Meaning that if we’re seeking the things of the world, then our hearts will be in the world, but if we’re seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness, then our hearts will be looking heavenward.

And the last word on the subject is: ‘For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify (put to death) the deeds of the body, ye shall live.’ (Rom.8:13) 

So for those of us who are truly trying to look towards heaven, to live in the Spirit and not in the flesh, let’s go home now defiantly and sincerely declaring (Steups! wrong again!) our Wednesday Wail letting all and sundry know our esteemed position in Christ, so that they too can work towards it. 

All together in strong voice: ‘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 what an amazing and glorious future it will surely be! Much LOVE!

…LOVE for the things of the world…brings death and eternal damnation…LOVE for the things of God…assures us of heaven and eternal life…

 

 

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 23 April 2019 1 John 2:1.

1 John 2:1.   ​My little children, these things I write unto you, that ye sin not (may not sin). And if any man sin, we have an advocate (an intercessor) with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.
 
So it’s Easter Tuesday and everybody’s now at work…No! Some blessed people down in sweet Tobago where the fun and frolic of goat races and crab races will take place down in Buccoo today, definitely aren’t working! Ah friends, Tobago is the mecca of fun and partying come Easter time! What with boat races, jazz concerts and all sorts of other joyful activities! 

I tried to stay for the festivities but unfortunately wasn’t able to do so. Steups! I guess the Lord overruled me. He knew something that I didn’t know. But them’s the breaks! You win some and you lose some! And anyway the many good memories I made in Tobago will always remain in my heart, as well as the joy of Easter, where our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ rose triumphantly from the grave, victorious against His evil foe, Satan! 

Oh glory to God my people! What a blessed day that was, and will always be! Please never let the joy and assurance it provides to escape from our hearts, minds, bodies and souls! Yes, it’s that important that we have to reiterate it again today…and every day, since it’s the very foundation on which our wonderful faith is based! 

Without Jesus sacrificing His sinless life for us, there’d be no resurrection for us, or salvation or promise of eternal life! So we’ve got to keep the fire, the heightened passion of Easter burning in our hearts each and every day of our lives, not only at the particular time of year that we actually celebrate it! And just to show how important it all really was and is, here’s a li’l gem from a daily Bread Devotional: ‘The One who died as our substitute, now lives as our advocate!’ 

All praise and thanksgiving and glory to God my faithful brethren, for He’s made our Saviour our Advocate too, sitting at His right hand interceding on our behalf! As John says in his epistle: ‘My little children, these things I write unto you, that ye sin not (may not sin). And if any man sin, we have an advocate (an intercessor) with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.’ 

Glory to God my people! Oh how wonderful is our God! How can we not LOVE and worship and exalt Him eh, after He’s done so much for us, none of which we even come close to deserving? 

And the scholars explain the Advocacy of Christ thus: ‘2:1. The term ‘advocate’ denotes a lawyer who represents his client before a court of law. When applied to the present ministry of Christ, it speaks of His work for sinning believers to restore them to fellowship. Christ’s work as an advocate is based on the sufficiency of His blood for all sin, past and present. 

Illustration: In the Old Testament, when David confessed his sin, he was forgiven and restored to a place of service. Application: Although the Christian has an Advocate with the Father, his goal in life ought to be overcoming sin (1 John 5:4), rather than merely confessing it. (First Ref.1 John 2:1; Primary Ref. 1 John 2:1; cf. Heb.7:25).’ 

And the scholars make a very good point there; not because we have an advocate are we going to sin willy-nilly. No! But because of our aversion to sin and its detrimental consequences we try our best to sin as little as possible! And John follows up our Bit with this reassuring statement: ‘And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.’ (1 John 2:2) 

Yes friends, Jesus Christ paid the price for the sins of the WHOLE WORLD! What an amazing sacrifice and accomplishment! Only the SINLESS Son of God had the ability to pull off such an amazing feat! 

Hear what the scholars say about that: ‘2:2. Propitiation is here an atoning sacrifice. Jesus bore in His body the punishment due us for our sin; in so doing He ‘propitiated’ God, satisfied God’s just demand that sin be punished. Thus Jesus is both the advocate for sinners (v.1) and the sacrifice for their sins.’ 

Mama Mia! There are no words to really describe the amazing scope of Christ’s work! And I guess that’s why some people don’t or can’t believe it? It’s just too much for our puny human minds to assimilate! That’s why we have to accept it be faith, and not by sight or understanding! And Christ is not only our Saviour and Advocate, but also our High Priest! 

Listen to how the author of Hebrews puts it when talking about priests. ‘But this man (Jesus), because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he liveth for ever to make intercession for them. 

For such a high priest became us (was fitting for us), who is holy, harmless (innocent), undefiled, separate from sinners, and made (has become) higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once when he offered up himself.’ (Heb.7:24-27) 

Oh friends, what an amazing personality is our Jesus! Saviour, Advocate, High Priest, God! He is everything wrapped up in ONE! That means we have no need for anything or anybody else but HIM! Please, please, let’s remember that as we go about our daily lives, walking out walk of faith! 

Now let’s go home declaring (right ho!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are! In strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘In God’s eyes, 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!’ 

Now let’s go out and do exactly that; share Christ’s amazing friendship and His awesome LOVE! Much LOVE!

…Christ’s intercession…is like unto…preventive medicine…

 

 

 

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 22 April 2019 Romans 12:17.

Romans 12:17.   Recompense (repay) to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest (have regard for good things) in the sight of all men.
 
Ah my fellow believers, what an anti-climatic situation! Yes, in the heat, in the heart of our Easter Celebrations, the most important event in our faith, or rather the most important event in man’s history since the Creation, Easter Monday rolls around and many of us have to go back out to labour for our daily bread! 

Chuh! How unfortunate that the evil and ungodly world doesn’t consider Easter important enough to make the Monday following a public holiday. But some of them do think that it’s okay, in fact quite right to massacre Christians in their churches and elsewhere at Easter, as was so shamelessly done this past weekend in Sri Lanka! Ah Lord eh! When will the foolishness end eh? 

But let’s leave that topic alone for now and consider the importance of what happened at Easter time; the resurrection of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ from the grave! Glory to God! And yuh know what friends, even though the ungodly world would like to trample on our physical celebrations, they can’t trample on the joy that the resurrection of Jesus Christ stimulates in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls! Absolutely not!!! And yes we need three exclamations marks there! (smile) 

For by God’s great grace, mercy and forgiveness, they can’t destroy the assurance of our own resurrection, and the ever-faithful promise of salvation and eternal life that Jesus’ triumphant victory over hell, death, the grave and our arch-foe Satan provides! Glory to God my people!

Give Him overwhelming praise and thanks for the overwhelming and unconditional LOVE He showed for us undeserving sinners when He sacrificed His only, sinless Son so selflessly for us on that old rugged cross of Calvary! 

So today, even if you’re out labouring, please keep that joy and assurance flowing freely and joyfully as you go about your tasks diligently and excellently, as Jesus desires of His followers.

And yes, you might have needed this a tad earlier, but it’s NEVER too late to pray. So let’s declare our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with the gumption, confidence and enthusiasm that Easter Sunday has raised up in us! 

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!’ 

Oh friends, by the enthusiasm, gravelly voices and slurred words, I can tell that I’m not the only one caught up in the throes of excitement and celebration of this most wonderful Easter Season! As always, those of us not going to work are rather vociferous on these occasions, but please remember Granny’s warning, ‘Sonny boy, please, please, ah beg yuh, drunk or sober, please mind yuh business!’ 

Yes my brethren, at times like these the evil one and his evil cohorts are out there seriously trolling for believers who might slip and allow them a foot or toehold into their righteous souls. So we do have to be careful and curtail our celebrations with a modicum of circumspection. 

But coming back to the massacre of Christians recently in Sri Lanka, it seems like it’s open season on believers these days. All over the world somebody or other is killing believers for no apparent reason other than that they believe! Hn! And to tell the truth, I think it’s high time that we retaliate in kind, because these people only understand one thing, an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth, in other words, violence! 

Are we going to be continually led like sheep to the slaughter with no resistance? I certainly hope not! Oh, I know our faith and the Good Book says: ‘Recompense (repay) to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest (have regard for good things) in the sight of all men.’ But that’s extremely difficult friends, when the enemy is killing us with such joy and gay abandon with no one doing anything worthwhile to stop them! 

There must be something we can do to curtail this offensive and sinister state of affairs. It’s obvious that the governments of supposed Christian countries aren’t really interested in doing anything but talk when these senseless murders occur, because they soon get back into bed with the same offenders in search of money and power. So it’s definitely up to us believers to stand up in some form and fashion and do something about it. 

But then again we are constrained by our faith as to what we can actually do, for the Good Book purposefully says: ‘Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.’ (Rom.12:21) Now that’s a real hard row to hoe friends, but we just have to find some way to mitigate this senseless slaughter of our fellow believers in certain parts of the world. 

And please don’t ask me how, because you’ll just get me in trouble with the Lord! (smile) But some of you deeper and better thinkers than me, will have to come up with something, else the nonsense will just continue unabated…and possibly get worse, as the enemy begins to believe they have an open license to do their evil work. Much LOVE!

…the darkness and evil of Good Friday…has now been overcome…by the light and goodness of Easter Sunday…please…in Jesus’ name…let’s keep it going…

 

 

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 21 April 2019 John 3:16.

John 3:16.   ​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.
 

Happy Easter my people! Well at long last the endless rain seems to have ceased! Glory Be! Oh it’s nice having rain but not for days on end. Even too much of the most valuable things can become annoying when you have them in too large a quantity. Yes, even too much money and too much LOVE are annoying! (smile) 

What I could use more of though is better health. Oh I’m feeling much better today than I did yesterday, but still not up to scratch. But we’re working on it. And today being Easter Sunday, probably the most important day in our Christian faith, when our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ rose triumphantly from the grave, conquering the foolish foe Satan, once and for all time! 

Oh what joy that brings to believers! And I know that all the places of worship will be filled today, as even the worst church-goers fill the pews on this most memorable day! I don’t understand why they only chose to attend on Christmas and Easter, but we’ll just be thankful that they are there. (smile) 

And as always we begin the real proceedings with a song of praise and worship, and this morning there’s no better hymn to open with than the Charles Wesley composition of ‘Christ the Lord is Risen Today!’ As one commentary so appropriately concludes: ‘It has been considered by many Christian hymnologists as being the most definitive church anthem for Easter. Each verse of “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today” features a focus on the Resurrection of Jesus. Learn more from the lyrics and story below!’ 

Yes friends, let’s do so as we belt out those words of victory which show the awesome power of our magnificent Lord and Saviour. All together now, in full voice with hearts seething with joy as the day demands. ‘Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia! Earth and heaven in chorus say, Alleluia! Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia! Sing, ye heavens, and earth reply, Alleluia! 

LOVE’S redeeming work is done, Alleluia! Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia! Death in vain forbids him rise, Alleluia! Christ has opened paradise, Alleluia! Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia! Where, O death, is now thy sting? Alleluia! Once he died our souls to save, Alleluia! Where’s thy victory, boasting grave? Alleluia! Soar we now where Christ has led, Alleluia! Following our exalted Head, Alleluia! Made like him, like him we rise, Alleluia! 

Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia! Hail the Lord of earth and heaven, Alleluia! Praise to thee by both be given, Alleluia! Thee we greet triumphant now, Alleluia! Hail the Resurrection, thou, Alleluia! King of glory, soul of bliss, Alleluia! Everlasting life is this, Alleluia! Thee to know, thy power to prove, Alleluia! Thus to sing, and thus to LOVE, Alleluia!’ 

Oh my fellow believers that’s really a lesson on Christ’s Easter Sunday resurrection! Every line spells out a significant aspect of the resurrection story. But the line I think that brings the truth home most powerfully and significantly is ‘LOVE’S redeeming work is done!’ 

And to that we can all shout a most glorious ‘Alleluia!’ because that is what the whole exercise was, is and shall always be about; the unconditional, overwhelming LOVE of God for His wonderful, but oh so disobedient and rebellious creation called mankind! 

As Bruh Paul put it so simply, but powerfully to the church at Rome: ‘But God commendeth (demonstrated) his LOVE toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom.5:8) Yes friends, God didn’t wait for us to change from our rebellious ways, but showed us what true LOVE is really like, so that we can follow His example and forgive and LOVE each other, the same way he forgave and LOVED us without any conditions tied to it. 

That just brings to mind the most powerful verse in the Good Book, the one that says it all, and also appropriately spoken by Jesus, who should know what He’s talking about. ‘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.’ 

Oh my fellow believers, it couldn’t get any better than that! Imagine that nuh? God LOVED us so much that He sacrificed His only Son so that we could be saved from hellfire and damnation! As Jesus said: ‘For God sent not his son into the world to condemn the world: but that the world through him might be saved. (John 3:17) 

Truly my faithful brethren, I don’t know what else to say that will help us believe the awesome and heart-rending LOVE that our heavenly Father feels for us, and what made Him go through all the pain He endured, so we can come to this great day of Jesus’ triumphant resurrection and the wonderful option that all who believe in Him, will also one day rise from the dead! 

As Bruh Paul told the Corinthians: ‘For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.’ (1 Cor.15:21-22) Yes friends, this is the day, the day of Christ’s amazing resurrection that sets the tone for our faith, for our salvation and eventual resurrection too. 

So please enjoy it and give much thanks and praise to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, as well as our heavenly Father, who planned the whole thing, and saw it through to completion, all for our sake! Much LOVE!

…without Easter…we would all be condemned to Hades…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 20 April 2019 John 3:3.

John 3:3.   ​Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again (or from above), he cannot see the kingdom of God.
 
Rain, rain go away, come again some other day! Chuh! I like rain, but after experiencing it for my last three days in Tobago then coming back home to it, it’s become a tad much. And the warnings of extensive flooding don’t help. But how to keep us happy eh? 

When we have a lot of sunshine, and it’s hot, we complain. A lot of cold and snow also cause bitter mutterings. And we don’t like it much when it rains on our parade either. (smile) And when you’re sick and feeling lousy, like I am, that state of affairs doesn’t help matters either. So I guess there’s just no pleasing us and we just have to learn to live with whatever Mother Nature supplies. End of story! (smile) 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s see what quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. But first let me apologize for a typo in yesterday’s Bit. I talked about Peter cutting off the high priest’s ear; it was actually the servant of the high priest’s ear he cut off. 

I knew that very well and it was what I intended to write, but somehow or the other didn’t write that. And you can imagine my disgust when a friend wrote and pointed it out to me because I don’t like to make mistakes in the Bit. But I guess that only shows I’m human and thus not infallible. (smile) 

And the first quote says: ‘If you have a strong purpose in life, you don’t have to be pushed. Your passion will drive you there.’ I guess there is much truth to that statement as passion is usually a driving force in our lives.

However, passion alone will not bring us to our destiny, we need other things like wisdom, knowledge, help and perseverance. In other words, blood, sweat and tears must be combined with our passion to provide success! (smile) 

And that segues in nicely to this other quote: ‘You’ve been given the innate power to shape your life…but you cannot just speak change, you have to LIVE change. Intent paired with action builds the bridge to success. You can’t just want it; you have to do it, live it…BE it! Success isn’t something you have; it’s something you DO!’ 

Ah friends, we see there it’s all about the doing, the living, the action! We just can’t sit on our fannies and expect things to change or our lives to be good because we wish it or talk about it. Yes, there is power in our words, but that power needs to drive us to action, to actually doing something to bring about the changes we desire! 

But then we come to this quote that appears to throw a spanner in our wheel: ‘Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts.’ So true, so true my people! Whatever we try to do, be it good, bad, or indifferent, things rarely run as smoothly as they should, or as we expect them to. 

But that’s just life! Life that seems to take pleasure in mucking up our best efforts! But that’s where things like patience, perseverance, ‘stick-to-it tiveness,’ and don’t give up come in! And as true believers in Christ, we all know that giving up is not in our vocabulary.

Remember Jesus said that we’d have problems in this evil and ungodly world, but we can handle them with grace and a smile, because He’s already overcome the world. (John 16:33) 

Now here is the last quote: ‘We all have two lives. The second one starts when we realize we only have one.’ And isn’t that the awesome truth my fellow believers? We have one life when we’re born of our mother’s womb, and then a second when we’re born of the Holy Spirit which brings us into serious communication and an intimate relationship with Almighty God! 

Jesus said it quite plainly to the Pharisee Nicodemus who came by night to enquire about Jesus’ awesome power and works. ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again (or from above), he cannot see the kingdom of God.’ 

Yes friends, to be included in the heavenly realm we all need to be born again of the Spirit as Jesus also told Nicodemus, when, in his confusion, he asked about entering his mother’s womb a second time.

‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.’ (John 3:5-7) 

And the scholars provide this interesting explanation: ‘3:3. Verily, verily (lit. “amen, amen”) occurs only in John’s gospel, and then always for emphasis. Born again may be translated either “again” or “from above.”

Perhaps both ideas should be combined here, to indicate the repetition of an act from another source. John might have said “again” had he wished to indicate repetition of an act from the same source. Only John uses this expression in the gospels. 

This concept of the New Birth includes these implications: (1) It undercuts Jewish dependence on being sons of Abraham (cf. 8:39). (2) It reveals that there must be a work of God “from above” since the Jews considered children (new births) to be God’s blessing. (3) It teaches the necessity of a new beginning.’ 

Yes my brethren, to be able to enter God’s kingdom a spiritual rebirth is absolutely necessary. But it’s also very simple. All we have to do is to believe that Christ died for us on Good Friday, as we commemorated yesterday. And then that He rose triumphantly from the dead and the grave, as we will celebrate tomorrow on Easter Sunday! 

Oh my people, there’s no better time to give our lives to Christ than RIGHT NOW! So let’s BE BORN AGAIN nuh, at this most exciting and emotional time of Easter, as we celebrate Christ’s total victory, His complete annihilation of the evil enemy Satan, ruler of hell, death and the grave! All Heaven will rejoice if we do! Much LOVE!

…eternal spiritual life…calls for spiritual rebirth today…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 April 2019 Matthew 27:46.

Matthew 27:46.   And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, eli, lama sabachthani? That is to say, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?
 
Home…Home…Home at last! But home sick! Steups! Ah friends, it’s great to be home, but when you come home from vacation sick with an annoying cold it doesn’t help matters at all. You’re already tired from all the vacationing, (smile) and you just want to rest, to put sickness on top of it isn’t the greatest feeling in the world. 

After the long flight and the hassle to get through the airport, I got home around eleven and expected to have a good night’s rest…Hn! What a pipe dream! I was up several times during the night bringing up stuff, my throat was raw, still is, making swallowing a tad difficult. But if one has to be sick, I guess the best place for that to happen is home. 

Home where the heart is! Home where you’re most comfortable and relaxed, be it a humble hovel or a majestic mansion! Something about home just gives one a li’l more assurance in times of trouble or illness. But enough about my woes, (smile) it’s Friday and the workingman is waiting to sing his song. 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! Good Friday…that means the long Easter weekend! Mama Yo! Party fuh so! And the weather should be good! Good thing that Easter fall so late this year yes, so it happen in springtime and not in winter! So many things to do, and places to go, and people to see! Chuh! Don’t know where to start nuh! But as they say, the best place to start is at the beginning! So ah guess we going to start with some eating and drinking and carousing! 

Brother! Who knows whether we going to be alive come next week Tuesday when we have to go back to the slave master slave labour? One thing ah know though; when we go back, we not killing we self over the work nuh. Leh him fire we, see how long his business going last nuh! But forget he now yes! Is time for me to do my own thing! Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Yes mih people, the workingman is a party animal if nothing else! But unfortunately, or should I say fortunately, as believers in Christ Jesus, we can’t afford to let our hair down like he can for fear of allowing the evil enemy to invade our righteous souls. But as I keep saying, that doesn’t preclude us from having a good time, we just don’t go to the extremes that the ordinary workingman does. 

And we have our own Friday Chant, which chronicles our thankfulness and wishes. So please, let’s chant it now nuh, in true sincerity and mucho enthusiasm. ‘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!’ 

Now, to the unbeliever, that might not sound like much, but to us believers, it’s short, sweet and to the point! (smile) And today, Good Friday, our hearts are heavy, filled with sadness as we commemorate the crucifixion of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. And some will ask why call it Good Friday when such a heinous, illegal crime was committed against an innocent person? 

That’s a good question my brethren. But the long and short of the story is that if Jesus had not died in place of us, our sins would not have been paid for, and we would not have been forgiven, redeemed, made clean and washed white as snow! Yes, it was a rough, unjust situation, but from the beginning of time the Father had decreed it to be the Son’s job to die for the abominable sins of His disobedient and rebellious creation called mankind. 

And yuh better believe it was no easy job that! The pain and agony, the ‘sufferation’ He had to endure was immense, seemingly unbearable, but He withstood it, all for our sakes, at the behest of the Father, who LOVED us so much that He didn’t want to lose even one of us to the evil enemy, Satan. 

That’s the most beautiful and compelling picture of LOVE that exists; sacrificing your only Son for a bunch of ingrates! Some people will call it crazy or stupid, but our heavenly Father called it LOVE! And since He’s the eternal Creator, He should know what He’s talking about. 

But I don’t know how Jesus handled all that unjust ‘sufferation’ nuh, without much complaining too. I guess He knew His role, and could not even consider disobedience to the Father’s wishes. As He told Peter on the night of His arrest, after Peter had cut off the high priest’s right ear. ‘Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?’ (John 18:11) Yes friends, I wonder how many of us put such a high priority on being obedient to the Father’s wishes eh? 

And what I greatly admire about Jesus are some statements He made from His painful and agonizing perch on the cross. The first one is ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.’ (Luke 23:34) Even on the cross, His modus operandi was LOVE and forgiveness! 

Note His words to the criminal crucified with Him, who saw the light and sincerely pleaded: ‘Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.’ (Luke 23:42-43) 

But the most touching and heart-rending words of Jesus on the cross are contained in this verse. ‘And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, eli, lama sabachthani? That is to say, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?’ 

Yes friends, what seemed to hurt Jesus the most was not the physical pain inflicted on His body, but the spiritual separation from His Father, the first time that had ever happened. And it had to be so since He was then the sin-bearer of the world, and the Father could not associate with sin. As the scholars explain: ‘Here we have the high cost to Christ of His atonement for our sins, who was accursed of God as our sin-bearer (cf. 2 Cor.5:21; Gal.3:13) and suffered the agony of spiritual death for us.’ 

And finally, the Good Book tells us: ‘And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost (breathed his last).’ (Luke 23:46) And the scholars explain: ‘He cried with a loud voice, as a shout of triumph, and yielded up His Spirit. In other words, having borne the wrath of God’s judgement against sin, He knew He had triumphed over Satan and the curse of sin.’ 

Oh what a blessed day that was for us my people, as Jesus gave us such a wonderful example to follow, showing LOVE and compassion and obedience even in His last agonizing moments on that old wooden cross on Calvary! Please, please, I implore us to do a better job, to improve in our own showing of LOVE, compassion and obedience, because that’s all He asks of us! Much LOVE!

…Good Friday…the darkest hour…just before the breathtaking dawn…of Easter Sunday…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 18 April 2019 Matthew 26:36.

Matthew 26:36.   Then cometh Jesus with them (His disciples) unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder (over there).
 
Well it’s the last day in Paradise…Steups! But I guess all good things must come to an end at some time or another! And being in sweet Tobago was indeed a good thing, or rather a wonderful thing! I don’t know where all the time went nuh, because I still haven’t seen or spoken to several people I wanted to connect with. I haven’t had a coconut water since I’ve been here…Imagine that nuh! 

I only bathed in my favourite beach, Store Bay once! Brother that sure is shocking! (smile) I did bathe in other beaches several times though. And the rain has continued through the night and the early morning. Think it might clear up later though. 

And yes, it’s Holy Thursday too, the day before Good Friday, when believers hunker down and consider their faith in light of Jesus’ upcoming crucifixion! The night when He bared His hurting soul and spirit in the Garden of Gethsemane in a futile attempt to change the course of His destiny. 

Jesus knew deep down that the Father wasn’t going to change His plans, but the human element in Him, and the upcoming separation from the Father, the first time in their long existence, plus the great weight of sin that would be placed on His shoulders forced Him to His knees in humble prayer. ‘Then cometh Jesus with them (His disciples) unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder (over there). 

And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee (James & John), and began to be sorrowful (grieved) and very heavy (deeply distressed). Then said he unto them, My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye (stay here), and watch with me. And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will but as thou wilt.’ (Matt. 26:36-39) 

Ah friends, yuh see the heavy sorrow that Jesus felt! It wasn’t easy for Him, although He was the Son of God. And I like the scholars’ explanation here. ‘The prayer for the cup to pass is not due to Jesus’ fear of death. Jesus questions the will of the Father as to the necessity of drinking the cup. 

While this may refer to death (“he tasted death”) it is more likely that the cup represents the wrath of God against sin, the divine wrath Christ would incur on the cross as man’s sin-bearer. In the awful anguish of that moment, the sin of the world was poured on Christ and he became “sin for us” (2 Cor.5:21). Thus the Righteous One dies a substitutionary death for guilty mankind.’ 

So true friends, so true! He sacrificed His sinless life so that we could be set free from the bondage of sin and death, and have eternal life; the greatest gift ever given to mankind, and yet we still don’t appreciate Him the way we should! Why is that eh friends? I don’t know the answer, neither do I understand it. We should be so grateful and jumping with joy, and living so sincerely for Him, that the world would open their mouths and wonder in astonishment at our godly and righteous lifestyle. 

But instead in our hypocrisy and lust for the things of the world, we make a mockery of His sacrifice with mostly a lot of talk and no real substance in our actions. Chuh! When I see how the leaders of Christ’s church, and consequently the followers behave in such ungodly fashion, it’s no wonder that the unbelievers don’t take us seriously. Christ’s church has as many scandals and unrighteousness as the evil world does. In fact, we seem to take our lead from the world and not from Christ! As they say, spiritual wickedness and corruption is rampant in high places! 

Oh my people, I do hope that this season of Lent has been one of deep concern and pondering on our faith and how we live it daily, because that’s how the world and the Lord will judge us; how good were our fruits, and how bright was our light? And when we come to the tremendous conclusion in a triumphant Easter resurrection, let’s hope that we will all have raised the level of our faith and practice of it thereof, so that we can be better witnesses and disciples for Christ! For that’s what it’s all about; spreading the good news of His gospel far and wide! 

Now let’s go home thankfully declaring (right ho!) our Thursday Blessings that the Lord has so generously bestowed on us. In strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘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 every day! Amen!’ 

And the next movement is to go out and share it all with the less fortunate as Christ intends for us to do. It’s not for us to hoard, but to share! Much LOVE!

…He died that we might be set free…forgiven…the least we can do…is show some sincere appreciation…

P.S. Tomorrow, God willing, I’ll be writing from the northern climes…good and bad… (smile) Much LOVE!

 

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