Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 November 2013 1 John 1:9

1 John 1:9.    If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
 
Oh Friends, I think yesterday I was doing some star gazing when I wrote ‘TGIM” instead of ‘TGIF,’ at the beginning of the Bit. I don’t know how many of you noticed it, but thanks to my first born, I was apprised of the situation soon after I posted it. I guess I was gazing into the future, seeing a time when we believers would routinely be rejoicing on Mondays for the glorious opportunity to go back out to work and fight tooth and nail for Jesus.
 
Please accept my apologies for being so previous. (smile) But remember we need to live by faith and not by sight, and to call things that are not, as though they are. And I’m still full of hope that that scenario will eventually come to pass, possibly not in my lifetime, except I live a very long life. I’m putting my faith in the next generation, that they will do better than us, otherwise crapaud will surely smoke their pipe. (smile) That just means that things will be real bad with them.
 
And today we’re going to start looking again at some of God’s promises, and this one in our Bit is a pretty big one; one of the biggest. But before we get to it, let’s get some background. In John’s first letter, he seeks to convince his readers about the reality of salvation and eternal life. And in the section from which our Bit is taken, he’s dealing with sin, its reality and its remedy.
 
He begins there by saying: ‘If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.’ (1 John 1:8)
 
To which the scholars write: ‘1:8. Others seem to have been claiming that they had no sin. Jesus had taught that those who owned up to their sin could find forgiveness, while those who were blind to their sin would be left mired in it. (cf. John 9:41)’
 
Hence John pens our Bit: ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’
 
And the scholars take on that is: ‘1:9. This is a restatement of verse 7. We ought not to deny our sins (v 8), but rather to confess them before God. This opens the door for His forgiving and cleansing light to purify our hearts. Unrighteousness is another way of saying ‘sin.’
 
And verse 7 comes from the earlier section where John is talking about God being light, with no darkness, but we’ll go from verse 6, to get the full context. ‘If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness (sin), we lie, and do not (practice) the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.’ (1 John 1:6-7)
 
To which the scholars explain: ‘1:7. “God is light” (v.5): To walk in this light, which is to live free from bondage to sin (cf. Rom.6:18), is to make true communion between believers possible. Jesus’ violent death on the cross, which is what blood signifies, is the initial antidote for and ultimate defense against sin’s presence and power.’
 
And that’s gospel truth my people! It’s only the shed blood of Jesus that gives us any reprieve from the burden of our sins!
 
Thus John continues: ‘If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.’ (1 John 1:10)
 
Meaning: ‘1:10. To deny one’s sinfulness (v.8) or sins is not just to deceive oneself; it is to make God a liar by denying His Word. Both Old and New Testaments stress the universality of man’s sin (e.g. Job 4:17; Ps. 14:3; Is.53:6; Rom. 3:10-18, 23).’
 
I’ll leave you all to look up those references, except the last one, which admirably drives home the point. ‘For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.’ (Rom.8:23)
 
And that my brethren is an inescapable fact! But again, we have such a wonderful God, who instead of giving us our just desserts for our sins; death, in His LOVING-kindness He devised a way-out plan so that He could lavish salvation and eternal life on us instead. Wow!
 
Now why would I want to bow down and worship any other God eh? No way Jose!
 
And our God is so thoughtful and kind that He made it very easy for us; just confess that you’re a sinner, believe in His crucified Son Jesus Christ, accept Him as your Lord and Saviour, and salvation and eternal life are yours. Your name’s automatically written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
 
Now that’s such a wonderful promise Friends, that some people can’t handle it. But the saying that if it sounds too good to be true, it most likely is, only applies to the things of man and of the world, not to the promises of our ever-faithful, omnipotent God. 
 

So please let’s not allow the prince of darkness and deceit, the ruler of this sinful world, Lucifer, to bamboozle us into thinking that there’s no hope for us. There IS LOTS OF HOPE when we put our faith and trust in the safe and secure hands of Almighty God, through our Lord, Saviour and heavenly Advocate, Jesus Christ! That’s the undeniable truth my Friends! Much LOVE!
 
…there’s no better place to be than…standing…standing…standing on the promises of God… 
 
P.S.   I hope you all notice how short it is today, (smile) Much LOVE!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 November 2013 1 Kings 8:56

1 Kings 8:56.  Blessed be the Lord, that hath given rest (peace) unto his people Israel, according to all that he hath promised: there hath not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant.
 
Ah Friends, it’s Friday once again… Unfortunately though, not a regular Friday, where the majority of workers are crying out ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!’ but what has now come to be known as Black Friday, the biggest shopping day in the U.S. Steups!
 
Unfortunately too, it’s now spread to and taken root in Canada, where the merchants are trying to retaliate by also having sales on the Friday after the U.S. Thanksgiving Holiday, that hopefully will keep shoppers up here. But I think they’re fighting a losing battle, for even if the bargains down south aren’t much better, the idea of going to shop in the U.S. has taken hold of too many Canadian minds.
 
The nonsense has even morphed on to the Internet. I had to utter a few deleted expletives when I turned on my computer this morning and saw a whole slew of messages touting Black Friday sales. Chuh!
 
Ah Friends, when is the nonsense ever going to end eh? It’s fast becoming all about money and buying stuff, a lot of which we don’t need and even more importantly cannot afford. For sadly there are even less people working these days, and many of them for less pay than before.
 
So where are they expected to get funds to buy all the stuff that’s been forced upon them eh? I guess that CREDIT is the next word. But we’re already up to our necks in debts and credit, and it’s those two that caused the last economic downfall.
 
And tell me how and when are we going to pay it off, if all the good jobs are being outsourced to foreign countries, and the few, part-time jobs available in the service sector are paying a measly minimum wage that can’t even support a single adult, much less a family.
 
Oh Friends, we’re going round in circles, like the proverbial dog trying to catch its tail. We work several low paying jobs, but still can’t meet our expenses, so we end up at the food banks, and run up the credit card debts, bearing enormous interest, which puts us even deeper in the hole.
 
Meanwhile, prices for everything, including inferior quality outsourced goods, are rising all the time. No wonder our economy is in such a mess, and the powers that be, the supposedly smart ones can’t seem to fix it, or simply refuse to at the behest of the greedy rich and powerful. And then they sit back and wonder why people are up in arms all over this worldly global village. Ah Lord eh!
 
Please be careful my Friends, for there’s a small group that’s trying to dominate the world, having begun by trying to get God out of our lives, and sadly, they are succeeding bit by bit. However, as followers of Jesus Christ, we need to be concerned, but not be afraid and/or overly anxious about our individual situations, for the Lord has promised to look after all His people, regardless of colour, class, creed or race.
 
Oh Friends, please take note of the true and powerful words of our Bit, uttered by Cousin Sol when he dedicated the Lord’s temple.  ‘Blessed be the Lord, that hath given rest (peace) unto his people Israel, according to all that he hath promised: there hath not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant.’ 
 
And the most important thing for us to remember there, is that even up to this day, many thousands of years later, ‘there hath not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant.’
 
Gospel truth mih breddren, gospel truth!
 
So although the psalmist Asaph cried out in anguish: ‘Will the Lord cast off for ever? And will he be favourable no more? Is his mercy clean gone for ever (ceased completely)? Doth his promise fail for evermore? Hath God forgotten to be gracious? hath he in anger shut up his tender mercies?  Selah.’ (Ps.77:7-9)
 
Obviously not! And after some contemplation, Asaph comes to his senses in the next verse. ‘And I said, this my infirmity (anguish): but I will remember the years of the right hand of the Most High. I will remember the works of the Lord: surely I will remember thy wonders of old. I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings.’ (Ps.77:10-12)
 
Yes my people, our great and wonderful God will never leave nor forsake us, as he’s promised! (Deut.4:31, Heb.13:5) So though life and times seem to be somewhat rough and troubled, we also need to remember the times when the Lord stood solidly in our corner and the things He’s brought us through. There’s no reason to doubt Him now.
 
True believers ought to have a strong faith in their Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. For as Bruh Paul reminds us of Abraham: ‘He staggered not (didn’t waver) at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong (strengthened) in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded (convinced) that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.’ (Rom.4:20-21)
 
Likewise Friends, we should also be fully convinced that the Lord can do whatever He’s promised. And when we stand strong in faith, we will be able to do what needs to be done to keep on keeping on.
 
So as the author of Hebrews exhorts us: ‘Let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke (stir up) unto LOVE and to good works.’ (Heb.10:23-24)
 
And since we all know that LOVE and good works are the hallmarks of Jesus, please my people, let’s stand strong and steadfast in the faith, and keep doing those things regardless of what comes against us, for the Lord WILL give us the wherewithal to pull through.
 
And now in closing, let’s chant our Friday Chant, so we can get the proper perspective on how to use the weekend. Hn! Thought I’d forgotten it nuh? Not a chance!
 
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.’
 
Much LOVE my brethren in Christ Jesus!
 
…it’s time to renew our efforts…to truly LOVE our God…sincerely LIVE our FAITH…and diligently SPREAD His Word…  
 
P.S. It’s a tad long and late (smile) but it’s all worthwhile! Much LOVE!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 November 2013 Deuteronomy 26:11

Deuteronomy 26:11.    And thou shalt rejoice in every good thing which the Lord thy God hath given unto thee, and unto thine house, thou, and the Levite (priest), and the stranger that is among you.
 
                                                   HAPPY  U. S. THANKSGIVING  DAY!
 
Well a Happy Thanksgiving Day to all our Friends and families south of the border! Today is the big day in the U.S. Possibly the most celebrated holiday on their calendar, where friends and families come together to give thanks for whatever they have it, be it much or little.
 
The sad part though is that too many have too little and too few have too much. But whatever we do have Friends, we need to be thankful for it.
 
As our Bit says, from the instructions of offering of our first fruits to the Lord: ‘And thou shalt rejoice in every good thing which the Lord thy God hath given unto thee, and unto thine house, thou, and the Levite (priest), and the stranger that is among you.’ Please note that it includes EVERYBODY; even ‘the stranger that is among you.’ 
 
And I just LOVE the scripture from Nehemiah, after Ezra and the priests had read and explained the Law of Moses, which most of the people had never heard before, and they wept after hearing it.
 
‘Then he (Nehemiah) said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto the Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the Lord is your strength.’ (Neh.8:10)
 
What I LOVE about that scripture are the inspired words; ‘and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared.’ Oh my fellow believers, that is supposed to be a big part of the Thanksgiving Holiday, or for that matter, ALL holidays! We need to learn to share with those who have less than us, because it is a Biblical instruction.
 
Note this verse, when the Israelites came out of Egypt, and were being told about certain feasts and how to cook the food and where to eat it.
 
‘And thou shalt rejoice before the Lord thy God, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are among you, in the place which the Lord thy God hath chosen to place his name there.’ (Deut.16:11)
 
EVERYBODY was supposed to be included! But unfortunately as the years rolled along and we became more selfish and greedy people, we have tended to forget about those the Lord takes special interest in; the poor, the widows and the orphans.
 
The same message is sent in Esther, after the Jews defeated Haman and their enemies in Babylon, and instituted the Feast of Purim. Mordecai instructed them to keep the feast; ‘As the days wherein the Jews rested from their enemies, and the month which was turned unto them from sorrow to joy, and from mourning into a good day (holiday): that they should make them days of feasting and joy, and of sending portions (presents) one to another, and gifts to the poor.’ (Esth.9:22)
 
But sadly, these days the poor are generally forgotten. Thanksgiving has become another big commercial day. It’s all about sales and money. As soon as Thanksgiving dinner is over, we now rush over to the stores to eagerly await Black Friday, when stuff is supposedly marked down tremendously.
 
Yes Friends, some stuff might be marked down, but others might also be marked up, because the merchants know that once you’re in the store for one cheap item, you’re more than likely to buy much more at higher mark-ups.
 
And the wild animal, leggo beast behaviour on display at these sales is truly disgusting. Many of us don’t even really need the stuff we line up for and rush and push to buy. But just because it’s on sale, we decide we must have it. That’s the kind of mentality the merchants have developed in us. Ah Lord eh!
 
And talking about the leggo beast behaviour, one woman claims she saw two other women fighting in a store over one object, while the security people stood around looking at them, no doubt in astonishment. Each woman had a hold on one end of the object, pulling and pushing and tugging and shouting angrily at each other.
 
And do you know what that must have object was? An electric toothbrush. Steups! 
 
And then after Black Friday comes Cyber Monday, another big sales day. Chuh! It’s all about merchandising these days!
 
Now even the Canadian merchants are getting involved in the nonsense as a way of stopping Canadians form going south to spend their money. Unfortunately, I don’t know how much good that is going to do nuh, because they say that even with the travel time and expense, the exchange rate and the border hassles, it’s still worthwhile to go south and shop on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Ah Lord eh!
 
Anyway Friends, enough of my whatever you choose to call it. I just hope that in all our business we remember the true purpose behind the holiday, and do give thanks to Almighty God for all that’s He’s done for us and provided us with.
 
Let’s also remember to share with the less fortunate, because that’s what Jesus is all about, and if we’re to be His true followers, we need to display the same empathy.
 
And we’ll end with some wise words from Cousin Sol on the topic. ‘I know that there is no good in them (nothing better for them), but for a man to rejoice, and to do good in his life. And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God.’ (Eccl.3:12-13)
 
And that my brethren is gospel truth! So please let’s act accordingly and thus give Jesus a good Thanksgiving present. It’s heartfelt wisdom. Much LOVE!
 
…I’m giving thanks…for all I’ve got…I’m giving thanks…whether or not…I’m giving thanks…for the life in me…I’m giving thanks now…  (From the song ‘Giving Thanks’ by Beres Hammond)
 
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 November 2013 Deuteronomy 28:1

Deuteronomy 28:1.    And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee high above all nations of the earth.
 
Ah mih people, in this rough and rugged world, when it’s not one thing, it’s certainly another yes. Now yesterday my allergies were bothering me, but I beat them off. Today though, I couldn’t get up. Like the ole body was more tired than I thought.
 
However, as the old people would say; better late than never. So if the Bit’s a tad late, please bear with the ole fella, let your tender mercies and forgiveness, your Christian compassion come to the fore, as you remember that he’s only human and thus very fallible. (smile) And that’s why they say B.S. baffles brains!
 
But I have an interesting acclamation to share today. It comes from Bubba Joel (Joel Osteen), so those of you who deal with him might have already seen it, but for the many who don’t, it’s very useful to share.
 
And Bubba Joel excitingly declares in the title: ‘TODAY IS MY DAY! God has destined me to be a barrier breaker! He created me to be uncontainable. I have talent and potential given to me by the Creator of the universe. There are seeds of greatness inside of me. Today, I choose to break free from a limited mindset and enlarge my vision.
 
Today, God is taking me places I’ve never even dreamed of before. Today, God is fulfilling His purpose and destiny in my life. Today, I will experience His favour like never before in every area of my life.’
 
Yes Friends, we all need to enlarge our vision and change our mindset to one that expects God’s favour, His goodness and mercy, every day of our lives, otherwise we’re more than likely to short-change ourselves.
 
Oh I know that lots of people cry down what’s generally called prosperity and positive thinking, but why not embrace it instead eh? Jesus said that He came to earth so that we could have life, and have it more abundantly. (John 10:10)
 
So what does that mean eh? It surely doesn’t mean we should live poor, downtrodden lives. But neither does it mean that every believer will become filthy rich in worldly goods and live high on the hog, as some preachers preach, and some believers believe. I think it means that generally speaking, true believers will live a decent, above average life.
 
For as our Bit so wonderfully puts this everlasting promise of our great and wonderful God: ‘And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee high above all nations of the earth.’
 
As usual Friends, our God’s pronouncements are plain and simple: obey, and you’ll be blessed. ‘And all these blessings shall come upon thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God.’ (Deut. 28:2)
 
Ah mih people, how wonderful He is eh! He even goes on to spell out in more detail, the many fabulous blessings He has in store for us, if we obey His rules.
 
‘Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field. Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body (offspring), and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine (cattle), and the flocks of thy sheep. Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store (kneading bowl). Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out.
 
The Lord shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten (defeated) before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways. The Lord shall command the blessing upon thee in thy storehouses, and in all that thou settest thine hand unto; and he shall bless thee in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.’ (Deut.28:3-8)
 
Oh my brethren, what’s in that not to understand eh? But being foolish, rebellious, prideful, think we know it all, trusting in our own sub-par provision, we’ve turned from the Lord. And what’s the result? We’re obviously reaping what we’ve so stupidly sown with our disobedience; poverty, sickness, economic distress, war, strife, and all other sorts of disasters and calamities.
 
But do you think we’ll even for a moment sit down and seriously ponder the situation? Oh no! Because Beelzebub has us in grip, we’re so firmly ensconced in the palms of his hands, we can’t escape his evil hold, for we’ve sold our souls to him for the worthless treasures of this soon to be destroyed world.
 
And we’ll end with this simple, straightforward, but oh so important verse of scripture. ‘The Lord shall establish thee a holy people unto himself, as he hath sworn unto thee, if thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, and walk in his ways.’ (Deut.28:9)
 
Oh Friends, it can’t get any simpler and more straightforward than that! So please, today, as true believers in Jesus Christ, let’s all pluck up our courage, pick ourselves up from wherever we’ve fallen, and believe God for a good and decent life, if we follow His dictates. 
 
And it’s not like we haven’t seen it played out just as He said, all down through the centuries; from the days of Jewish prosperity, to their calamities when they disobeyed, right down to our earlier prosperity when we were a more godly people, to our now divisive, disaster and strife torn world, as we’ve become very idolatrous and disobedient.
 
So it’s not like the words of the Good Book haven’t been played out and found to be true. It’s just that we’re obstinate, rebellious, prideful and foolish.
 
So please my people, let’s try and make some wise changes nuh, once again becoming obedient to God’s Word, starting TODAY! That’s wisdom of the most immense proportions. Much LOVE!
 
…if you want to disobey…then know that you’ll surely pay…and pay large too…
 
     
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 November 2013 Psalm 38:1

Psalm 38:1.    O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.
 
Oh Friends, the ole fella’s shaking it a tad rough thus cold Tuesday morning. My allergies seem to be acting up. Let’s hope it’s just that and not a full-blown cold. Thankfully, I haven’t had one of those in a long time. However, between the man-made medicine and the enabling powers of our healing God, I’m bringing whatever it might be under control. ‘Praise the Lord!’ 
 
But isn’t it strange how a simple thing like the common cold, or allergic sniffling, sneezing and blowing can make a body feel so weak and miserable, while supposedly greater illnesses don’t have us feeling so lousy all over? Anyway, the important thing is that we try to rise above whatever ails us through God’s helpful healing powers and whatever man-made medication He directs us to.
 
Now let’s turn to our Bit, which through the Lord’s mysterious machinations (smile) has turned into a three day affair, when it was originally planned for only one. But that’s how the Lord operates, because of His higher thoughts and ways. And if that’s how He wants his Word to be exposed, who am I, a puny mortal, to say Him nay eh? I’d eventually be crying out like the psalmist: ‘O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.’
 
And today, we’ll continue looking at some scriptures that deal with heartfelt pleas, healing and chastening, that we didn’t finish yesterday. First off, for the benefit of all those who didn’t take the time to check it, I’ll quote the Habakkuk verse from the scholar’s reference yesterday.
 
‘O Lord, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid: O Lord, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy.’ (Hab.3:2)
 
That prayer precedes a victory ode recounting God’s deliverance of Israel during the Exodus from Egypt. But again my people, we’re reminded of the mercy the Lord needs to show us, otherwise we’d just be obliterated from the face of the earth in His anger over our numerous wrongdoings.
 
However, here is the Lord’s ever-faithful promise to His chosen people Israel, and to all those who subsequently believe in His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus. This is also from the scholar’s reference yesterday.
 
‘Fear thou not, O Jacob my servant, saith the Lord: for I am with thee; for I will make a full end of all the nations whither I have driven thee: but I will not make a full end of thee, but correct thee in measure (as is right); yet I will not leave thee wholly unpunished.’ (Jer.46:28)
 
Ah mih breddren, thankfully we will not be obliterated, but bet yuh bottom dollar, we will receive our fair share of punishment. Now originally I was going to quote Jer.30:11, which basically says the same thing, but I preferred the ‘Fear thou not,’ start of the quoted scripture. (smile)
 
And please remember Friends, that the Lord, our great, faithful and trustworthy God is ALWAYS with His people! That’s not only gospel truth, but also a proven fact! 
 
And we’ll end with a scripture we all know, but foolishly try to run from. It is the brilliant compilation of words from Proverbs, Revelation and Deuteronomy, plus some of his own, that the author of Hebrews gives us on the subject of chastening.
 
And having read Hebrews, I truly don’t see how the author could be any other than Bruh Paul, for the depth of learning and huge amount of divine dispensation that it entails, and even more the language used therein, he is the only one in the Christian story that seems to have had them all.
 
Anyway, let’s check out this most important bit of scripture my fellow believers. Please note that wherever the passage says ‘son’ it can be also read ‘daughter’ if you’re female.
 
‘And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as children (sons), My son, despise not thou the chastening (discipline) of the Lord, nor faint (be discouraged) when thou art rebuked of Him: For whom the Lord LOVETH He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth.
 
If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then ye are bastards (illegitimate), and not sons.
 
 
Furthermore, we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence (respect): shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? For they verily for a few days chastened us, after their own pleasure (as seemed best to them); but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.
 
Now no chastening (discipline) for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised (trained) thereby.’ (Heb.12:5-11)
 
Oh mih people, that says it all! It’s the authoritative statement on the subject! However, I want to add some important explanations from the scholars. (smile)
 
’12:6. Whom the Lord LOVETH he chasteneth: God’s principle of disciplining His own people is completely congruous (in accordance with) human practices. This quotation from Proverbs 3:12, stating God’s practice, corresponds to the commands gave to fathers:
 
“He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that LOVETH him chasteneth him betimes (promptly)” (Prov.13:24; cf. 22:15; 23:13). LOVE and corporal punishment are not incongruous (incompatible); they are two complimentary and necessary aspects of training.’
 
Sadly though Friends, we as fleshly parents have seriously disregarded that godly admonition, and thus have reaped the consequences, poorly trained, disobedient children.
 
However, let’s just remember not to get too upset and carry on like spoiled brats whenever the Lord hauls us up on the carpet, because He WILL be merciful, if we are contrite and accepting of our punishment. And that’s definitely divine wisdom! Much LOVE!
 
…if you have problems with being chastened…hn!…then just remember the other option nuh…for the wages of sin is death…
 
         
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 November 2013 Psalm 38:1

Psalm 38:1.    O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.
 
And as that contentious day, Monday, dawned around the world, the rich voices of God’s people could be heard joyfully declaring: ‘TGIM! Thank God it’s Monday! Time to go back out amongst the evildoers and fight for Jesus!’
 
Ah mih Friends, I’m working here on the supposition that if we hear it often it enough, it will eventually sink into our souls through osmosis or some other divine action, (smile) and we’ll eventually come to believe it and act accordingly. For there’s nothing greater than hope in this life.
 
And now that I’ve woken up to the true reality of the situation, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with much gusto. As one great voice now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together.
 
We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour.
 
We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’
 
Great singing Friends! It sounded so heartfelt that all the heavenly hosts joined us. Now that certainly says something positive about our singing and the state of our hearts. Anyway, as you can see, we’re back with the same Bit as yesterday: ‘O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.’
 
That’s because yesterday I was guided to go through the whole psalm, when I had planned to quote some scriptures dealing with heartfelt pleas, healing and chastening. Well today we’re going to do that.
 
And to start us of, we’ll turn to the first verse of Psalm 6, A Prayer for mercy, where Bruh David opens thus: ‘O Lord, rebuke me not in thine anger, neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.’ (Ps.6:1)
 
You’ll notice Friends that it’s almost exactly the same as our Bit, except instead of using ‘thy wrath, he uses ‘thine anger.’ But they convey the same meaning. So it seems that there were times when Bruh David felt that he deserved rebuke and pleads with God not to make it too harsh.
 
And I believe that consciousness of wrong doing, as well as his forthrightness to lay all his cards on the table before the Lord, without pretext or pretence, is what so endeared him to his Creator. There wasn’t the hypocrisy and such in his crying out that’s so prevalent today. Too many of us cry out to God for help, but with the wrong motives, or with hidden secrets, foolishly submerged, as though the Lord can’t see them.
 
That’s why we so often don’t receive any answers to our pleas. The important thing my brethren, is that when we cry out to God for help, we must come clean with Him, don’t hold back anything, because that hinders communication with our Maker.
 
Now the next scripture I want to draw to our attention comes from Psalm 118; Thanksgiving for the Lord’s Salvation. The psalmist boldly proclaims: ‘The right hand of the Lord is exalted: the right hand of the Lord doeth valiantly. I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord. The Lord hath chastened me sore (severely): but he hath not given me over unto death. Open to me the gates of righteousness: I will go into them, and I will praise the Lord.’ (Ps.118:16-19)
 
Yes Friends, let’s be extremely thankful that our Lord’s nature is to have mercy, otherwise most of us would exit this life much sooner than we planned. And note too the psalmist’s reaction to God’s mercy; a greater awareness and dedication to righteousness and praise.  
 
And we’ll end with this quote from the prophet Jeremiah, as he soulfully declares: ‘O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps. O Lord, correct me, but with judgement (justice); not in thine anger, lest thou bring me to nothing. Pour out thy fury upon the heathen (Gentiles) that know thee not, and upon the families that call not on thy name: for they have eaten up Jacob (Israel), and devoured him, and consumed him, and have made his habitation desolate.’ (Jer.10:23-25)
 
Ah mih people Jeremiah was surely giving it all he had, for He knew the intensity of God’s wrath if it ever fell completely upon His chosen people Israel. As the scholar’s put it: ’10:24-25. Jeremiah surrenders to God’s program of judgement but asks that the necessary chastisement not be carried out severely (cf. 46:28; Hab.3:2).’ 
 
And so should we likewise surrender my people, with the sincere aim of coming up higher in His estimation, so there won’t be as much chastening. Till tomorrow then, when, provided the Lord’s in favour, we’ll continue this topic, because I have more scriptures to share, but in the interest of our mental strain and busy lives, I won’t share them all today. (smile)
 
So till we meet again, may the Lord bless us and keep us safely under the protection of His everlasting wings, cause His radiant countenance to shine upon us, give us His wonderful peace, wisdom and understanding, for therein lies our reason to be. Much LOVE!
 
…when we falter…we should not be surprised by God’s chastening… 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 November 2013 Psalm 38:1

Psalm 38:1.    O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.
 
Oh Friends, oh Friends, it’s a chilly Sunday morning in the last week of November and there’s snow on the ground. Chuh, Steups! (smile) Granted, it’s not much snow, but snow is snow, especially when winter is not officially due for another month. But this is also Canada, and in these times of climate change anything can happen. Let’s hope that this winter season isn’t too bad.
 
And strangely enough, this morning the Lord led me to Psalm 38, the prayer of a penitent heart, written by Bruh David to remind him of his troubles, how he needs to respond to them, and where he needs to go to get help.
 
Our Bit opens the psalm with an earnest, heartfelt petition: ‘O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.’
 
Bruh David must have been in a real quandary, as he penitently continues: ‘For thine arrows stick fast in me (pierce me deeply), and thy hand presseth me sore (down). There is no soundness in my flesh because of thine anger; neither is there any rest (health; lit. peace) in my bones because of my sin. For mine iniquities have gone over my head: as a heavy burden they are too heavy for me.
 
My wounds stink (are foul and festering) and are corrupt because of my foolishness. I am troubled; I am bowed down greatly; I go mourning all the day long. For my loins are filled with a loathsome disease (inflammation): and there is no soundness in my flesh. I am feeble and sore (severely) broken: I have roared (groaned) by reason of the disquietness of (turmoil in) my heart.’ (Ps.38:2-8)
 
Mama Mia! Bruh David must have been in a real sad state friends. But before we continue, here are some interesting notes from the scholars.
 
‘Psalm 38. Some debate as to whether the details of verses 1-8 should be taken literally, and thus as a reference to a physical illness, or figuratively, making them a vivid picture of psychological and moral distress. The detail and length of the description, as well as its personal nature seem to point to some serious disease from which David is suffering as he writes.’
 
Yeh Friends, whether Bruh David’s words were literal or figurative, there’s no doubt that he’s certainly between a rock and a hard place, as he continues his plaintive cry. ‘Lord, all my desire is before thee; and my groaning (sighing) is not hid from thee. My heart panteth, my strength faileth me: as for the light of mine eyes, it is also gone from me.’ (Ps.38:9-10)
 
Ah mih people, when the warrior king of Israel, that great man of God is brought to such low levels, then something must be truly wrong in his life. And we get some idea of the other ramifications in the next couple verses.
 
‘My lovers (loved ones) and my friends stand aloof from my sore (my plague); and my kinsmen (neighbours) stand afar off. They also that seek after my life lay snares for me; and they that seek my hurt speak mischievous things (of destruction), and imagine deceits (plan deception) all the day long.’ (Ps.38:11-12)
 
Yeh mih breddren, desertion by friends and family, and serious threats from one’s enemies can bring us to a rather low and depressed state, especially if we already have other personal problems. However Friends, please note carefully Bruh David’s actions in these next verses.
 
‘But I, as a deaf man, heard not; and I was as a dumb man that openeth not his mouth. Thus I was a man that heareth not, and in whose mouth are no reproofs (responses).’ (Ps.38:13-14)
 
Bruh David didn’t answer his accusers, or plead with his supposed friends and family, but kept his mouth shut, so that there could be no further accusations against him. That’s one of the many times when silence is truly golden. And that’s what many of us have to learn to do when false accusers and unworthy friends and family betray us.
 
Too often though, we get all hot and bothered and angrily try to defend ourselves or retaliate, through words or actions. But usually the smartest thing is to keep quiet, since making important decisions when we’re angry or upset just make matters worse. First we need to ponder the situation, to see if there’s any truth in it, then follow Bruh David’s action, turn to God for succour.
 
‘For in thee O Lord, do I hope: thou wilt hear (answer), O Lord my God. For I said, Hear me, lest otherwise they should rejoice over me: when my foot slippeth, they magnify themselves against me. For I am ready to halt (fall), and my sorrow is continually before me.
 
For I will declare mine iniquity; I will be sorry for (in anguish over) my sin. But mine enemies are lively (vigorous), and they are strong: and they that hate me wrongfully are multiplied. They also that render evil for good are mine adversaries; because I follow the thing that good is.’ (Ps.38:15-20)
 
Ah my fellow believers, that is the only wise and sensible way when we’re dealing with overwhelming problems, in fact with any problems at all. We need to get ourselves quiet, then go to God, FIRST, not last as we tend to do. And then we need to unburden our very hearts and souls to him, truly confessing all that we’re aware of, for In Him, there is sure hope and comfort from all our earthly problems.
 
As Bruh David concludes: ‘Forsake me not, O Lord: O my God, be not far from me. Make haste to help me, O Lord my salvation.’ (Ps.38:21-22)
 
And Jesus made that very clear when He invited us to ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek (gentle) and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt.11:28-30)
 
Oh my people, what a wonderful God we serve! It just boggles my mind to think how much He cares for and looks after us, despite our sinful, unfaithful nature.
 
So please, let’s be grateful for His tender mercies and give Him much thanks and praise, today and everyday that we’re alive, for that’s wisdom of the highest magnitude. Much LOVE!
 
…why do we keep turning to fallible, unreliable man for help with our problems…when we have an infallible, exceedingly reliable God to turn to eh…
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
   

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 November 2013 Psalm 113:1

Psalm 113:1.    Praise ye the Lord (sing Hallelujah). Praise, O ye servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord.
 
Oh Friends, the ole fella’s been in a rut for the past forty five minutes or so, looking for a Bit that he could get his mind around. Brother! I sure have been spoiled these last few days dealing with the promises of father Abraham, since I didn’t have to seek out something new to write on everyday.

 
Oh, I knew what I wanted to write about, but unfortunately the mental juices just weren’t flowing in that direction. And you know how sometimes we refuse to let an idea go, although it’s just not working for us. What is the saying, something like kicking a dead horse? Well that was my dilemma.
 
Possibly the Lord didn’t want me to write on that topic today. Who knows eh, with Him and His mysterious ways? However, I always had hope. My faith might not be as great as Abraham’s, but it’s strong enough to sustain me in times of need. Furthermore, the Lord’s never let me down before in all my struggles, so why should He now eh? I always knew that He would eventually lead me to something that pleased Him.
 
And that’s exactly what we have here from Psalm 113; God’s mercies are many. And indeed they are my people! So let’s get into our Bit, and do just as it says: ‘Praise ye the Lord (sing Hallelujah). Praise, O ye servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord.’
 
Yes my brethren, the Lord’s name is indeed great and greatly to be praised! And as the psalmist continues: ‘Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and for evermore. From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the Lord’s name is to be praised.’ (Ps.113:2-3)
 
And for those of you who work nights and sleep days and don’t see the sun, we can change that to: ‘from the rising of the moon to the going down of the same.’ (smile) But whatever time you are awake, the Lord’s name ought to be praised my brethren. And why is that you ask? Simple; because He’s great!
 
‘The Lord is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens. Who is like unto the Lord our God, who dwelleth on high, Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven and in the earth!’ (Ps.113:4-6)
 
And Friends, we all know the answer to both those questions is a plain and simple NOBODY!
 
And we ought also to praise Almighty God because He sincerely cares for the poor and needy. ‘He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth the needy out of the dunghill (the ash heap); That he may set him with princes, even with the princes of his people. He maketh (causes) the barren (childless) woman to keep house (dwell in a home), and to be the mother of children. Praise ye the Lord.’ (Ps.113:7-9)
 
Ah mih people, those are certainly most excellent reasons to praise our omnipotent, forgiving and merciful God! And if you want some more reasons, then listen to Daniel after the Lord revealed the secret of King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream to him.
 
‘Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings and setteth up (raises up) kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge unto them that know (have) understanding:
 
He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him. I thank thee, and praise thee, O thou God of my fathers, who hast given me wisdom and might, and hast made known unto me now what we desired of thee: for thou hast now made known unto us the king’s matter.’ (Dan.2:20-23)
 
Oh Friends, how many more reasons do we need for praising our great God eh? He’s mighty and wise; controls the times and the seasons; raises up and removes kings; gives wisdom and knowledge to those who seek and deserve them. He also reveals to mankind, like He did with Daniel, the portent of dreams and visions, of secret things, and knows what the darkness contains, like our plentiful, deep, dark deeds. (smile)
 
So what more can we ask eh? The Lord God Jehovah is Lord and God over all! Therefore He deserves constant and unending praise, but that’s something, we the Lord’s supposed followers are sadly lacking in at this current time. Oh I know that the world’s in a sorry state, and our lives lack the certainty they had just a few years ago, which makes us somewhat fearful and anxious. 
 
But my fellow believers that’s no reason for us to be more taken up with the things of the world – food, clothes, houses, jobs – than with the things of God, and thus cut down on our prayer and praise. Instead, it’s in the rough times that we most need to turn to God, cozy up to Him, not turn away, because He’s the ONE from whom all our help, all our blessings come. 
 
And please remember Jesus’ admonition from the Sermon on the Mount: ‘(For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow (do not worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:32-34)
 
Oh Friends, please, please, let’s take all of that to heart! It’s the best advice we can ever get. And to show our hope, trust, faith and surrender to Almighty God, let’s close with some appropriate praise from Psalm 135; The greatness of the Lord and the vanity of idols.
 
‘Praise ye the Lord. Praise ye the name of the Lord; praise him, O ye servants of the Lord. Ye that stand in the house of the Lord, in the courts of the house of our God, Praise the Lord; for the Lord is good: sing praises unto his name; for it is pleasant. For the Lord hath chosen Jacob unto himself, and Israel for his particular (special) treasure. For I know that the Lord is great, and that our Lord is above all gods.’ (Ps.135:1-5)
 
And that, my fellow believers, is divine, gospel, undeniable, indisputable and any other truth there is! (smile) Much LOVE!
 
…Praise Him, praise Him…Glory Hallelujah…He is LOVE…He is LOVE…
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 November 2013 Genesis 22:18

Genesis 22:18.    And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.
 
Aye mih people, it’s Friday morning, and I hear you loudly shouting ‘TGIM! Thank God it’s Friday! The weekend is here, and no more work for two big days! Pappy oh! That means it’s party time!’
 
But hold on a minute mih people, that’s the way the world looks at it. True followers of Jesus ought to look at it in a different light though; the light that our Friday Chant extols. So please let’s chant our Friday Chant instead, so that we can bring the right attitude, the correct perspective to the wonderful weekend ahead of us.
 
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.’
 
Now that, my Friends and fellow believers is more in keeping with what our response to the weekend ought to be! And the time has come to turn to our Bit, the same one as yesterday: ‘And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.’
 
We saw yesterday where the Lord commanded Abraham to go to the land of Moriah and sacrifice his son Isaac as a burnt offering. No doubt Abraham experienced great internal stress, since the Lord’s command deviated substantially from His promise to make him the father of many nations through Isaac.
 
However, on the outside, Abraham remained calm and did what the Lord commanded. And when he was about to slay Isaac, the Lord stopped him, then provided a lamb for the purpose, and in honour of the Lord’s faithfulness, Abraham called the place Jehovah-jireh (the Lord will provide; for He did indeed provide in Abraham’s time of want. (Gen.22:1-14)
 
Now that whole episode makes me wonder what effect it had on young Isaac. How he must have fretted eh, especially after asking his father about the animal to be sacrificed, being told that the Lord would provide one, then having his father bind him upon the altar to use him as the sacrifice. (Gen.22:7-8)
 
The Good Book doesn’t say anything about it, but one way or the other, it must have had a great impact on Isaac, a mere youth at the time. But that unselfish act of Abraham must be considered as one of the greatest acts of faith ever shown by a believer, especially in those first days when the Lord was trying to put His chosen people together.
 
The Lord must also have been greatly moved, for as the Good Book tells it: ‘And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the Lord, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son:
 
That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed (descendants) as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the seashore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.
 
So Abraham returned unto his young men, and they rose up and went together to Beer-sheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beersheba.’ (Gen.22:15-19)
 
Yes Friends, that’s the magnanimous, ever-faithful God that we serve! When we are faithful to obey His commands, especially those real deep, soul searching one, He honours us superbly! You can certainly see why He eventually made Abraham the father of many nations; his faith and trust were exceedingly great!
 
Now here are some relevant thoughts on the situation from the scholars. ’22:1-14. God did tempt Abraham: The word tempt is better rendered as “proved or tested.” God does not tempt anyone with evil (James 1:13), but in certain instances, He does test, try, or prove us (James 1:2; 1 Pet 1:6-7). Therefore we must assume that the command to sacrifice Isaac was not evil. God knew what He would do in the end. He had no intention to permit the murder of Isaac.
 
The reason God prohibited the Israelites from following the example of the Gentiles who offered their own children as sacrifices to their gods (Deut.12:31) was that such monstrous deeds were in contradiction to the character of the true God. Abraham’s faith was being tried. This was the entire purpose of the episode.
 
Moriah was in the general area that included the hills on which Solomon later built his temple in Jerusalem (2 Chr. 3:1) The journey was about 50 miles. God will provide is a phrase that would be immortalized in the name of the place in verse 14.
 
Now I know that thou fearest God indicates that God was certain that Abraham feared (reverenced) Him more than anyone else, since he was willing to offer Him his son. So God provided a ram as a substitute for Isaac. (cf. John 1:19)’  
 
Ah my brethren, our great God does move in mysterious ways, but He’s never reneged, or will He ever renege on any of His promises! That’s the point that we’re trying to make.
 
He promised Noah a rainbow as a token of His covenant, and even to this day, thousands of years later, the beautiful rainbow of God’s promise still graces our skies every so often.
 
Likewise Abraham, though he experienced a lot of negatives on his journey of faith in and for God, today, most of the world, Jews, Christians and Muslims are all considered descendants of Abraham through Isaac, Jesus and Ishmael respectively. 
 
Wow! The Lord indeed kept His awesome promise, making him a father of many nations, and his heritage known around the world. That just goes to show my people that we can faithfully trust the God of Noah and Abraham to keep His promises to all and sundry, without any exceptions.
 
So Friends, if the Lord is talking to you today, please listen closely, then do as he asks. You’ll cause yourself less problems in the long run, for if He really wants you, He’ll eventually get you, the hard way. I can tell you that from personal experience.
 
So whenever he comes a-calling, just say, ‘Yes Lord! How high Lord?’ And then jump to it. That’s wisdom at its zenith. Much LOVE!
 
…as per Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley)…the wisest move we can ever make…is simply to obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him… 
 
P.S. Yes Friends, I know it’s a tad long, but I just wanted to finish the messages on Abraham’s promise today. So please bear with the ole fella, since it’s all for your enlightenment and edification. (smile) Much LOVE!
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 November 2013 Genesis 22:18

Genesis 22:18.    And in thy seed (descendants) shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.
 
Oh Friends, oh Friends, it’s another beautiful day in God’s earthly paradise! Wow! What a wonderful God we serve and worship, my people!
 
And all God’s children gratefully and joyously declared: ‘Yes! Our God is indeed great! He’s full of grace, mercy, forgiveness and LOVING-kindness! There’s no other like Him! Let’s praise and bless His Holy Name! Amen.’
 
And so we should my fellow believers, for our God is indeed worthy of our praise and glory!
 
Anyhow, without further ado, let’s get right into our Bit, because there’s lots of scripture to be had on this last message, re the promises of God to our forefather Abraham. ‘And in thy seed (descendants) shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.’
 
So why did the Lord reinforce this promise to Abraham again eh? We’ll let the Good Book tell the story.
 
‘And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt (test) Abraham and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am. And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou LOVEST, and get thee into the land of Moriah: and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.
 
And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass (donkey), and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave (split) the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him. Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.
 
And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass: and I and the lad (Isaac) will go yonder and worship, and come again to you. And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son, and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together.
 
And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood; but where is the lamb (goat) for a burnt offering? And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.’ (Gen.22:1-8)
 
Oh Friends, can you imagine what must have been happening with Abraham’s spirit? The Lord had told him on several occasions that Isaac would be the forerunner of his plentiful descendants, but here now, the Lord had commanded him to offer Isaac as a burnt offering. I guess the worldly part of him was all hot and bothered, while the faithful part trusted that God would make a way to avoid that dreadful circumstance.
 
And there are two things which point to that fact. First, when he told his servants that Isaac and him would go afar off and worship, ‘and come again unto you.’ He obviously figured that they both would return. And secondly that’s exactly what Abraham told Isaac in the last verse there, when the lad enquired about the animal for the sacrifice; ‘the Lord will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering.’
 
Truthfully, I don’t know if many of us today could have handled that command of God nuh, since we have such an easy life compared to Abraham and his people. In the wilderness of those times, faith was a much more important aspect for one’s mere survival, than it is today. But from whatever aspect we view it, Abraham’s actions were indeed a very telling moment of faith.
 
And the Good Book continues: ‘And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood. And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son.
 
And the angel of the Lord called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham, and he said, Here am I. And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou anything unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.
 
And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son. And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovah-jireh (the Lord will provide): as it is said to this day, In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen (provided).’ (Gen.22:9-14)
 
Yes mih people, yes! Our omnipotent and ever-faithful God came through again with flying colours on Abraham’s behalf! And again I need to note what a mighty and faithful God we serve my brethren! And yuh know what too, it’s the same way our God has been coming through with flying colours for everyone who sincerely believes in and worships Him since then, right up to this very day.
 
Mama Mia! And many of us have indeed experienced His supreme faithfulness in our lives. In fact we do so everyday, by just waking up to a great new day. For without His grace, mercy and LOVING-kindness we won’t be able to do even that. Remember also that He is the very ONE who first breathed the breath of life, the breath of His Spirit into our inanimate bodies, so that we could become living, LOVING, beings, a mirror image of Him. 
 
Anyway Friends, unfortunately we’ll have to stop there for today, since the rest of what I have to say will make the Bit way too long, even for me. (smile) Obviously, in my exuberance, I underestimated the space and time capabilities I had available to me. But don’t worry, the Lord in favour, tomorrow we’ll continue this most uplifting and enlightening aspect of scripture.
 
Till then, please let’s ponder what we’ve read and heard, and see how our current faith matches up to that of our forefather Abraham, and prayerfully ask the Lord to help us increase our faith in Him, because we all can definitely use some more sustaining faith in these very troubled and ungodly times. Much LOVE!
 
…but without faith…it is impossible to please him…for he that cometh to God…must believe that he is…and that he is a rewarder…of them that diligently seek him… (Heb.11:6)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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