Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 April 2018 2 Chronicles 7:14.

2 Chronicles 7:14.    If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

And then it was Monday again…so I guess most of you readers are already at work, struggling after a partying weekend…but not my people, because we know better than that. (smile) Uncharacteristically though, I’ve been sleeping through most of the day. I guess the ole bod needs the rest. I’m not doing badly though, should be out of here tomorrow. 

But let’s do what we have to do, let’s sing out our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, because it’s prayer and is useful at any time of day or night. As one 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!’ 

Glory be my people! Prayer is such a wonderful thing! It not only connects us to our Triune God Head, but it also uplifts our souls and spirits at the same time. What could be better than that eh? That’s why it’s the most important weapon in a believer’s arsenal. And it’s possibly why I am still alive and kicking today; because of all the pleading prayers you all made on my behalf. 

So please, let us never belittle or downplay the power of prayer, especially since it’s the method the Creator chose for us to communicate with Him. As He says in our Bit today: ‘If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.’ 

And the scholars tell us: ‘7:14-15. While this promise was originally given to Solomon regarding the people of Israel, it is certainly applicable to all who will call on the Lord in repentance and faith. These verses stand as a high expression of God’s LOVING readiness to hear the prayers of a repentant people (cf. 6:37-39; James 4:8-1).’ 

And in these modern times where sin and evil are so prevalent, do we ever need to pray for help to overcome our numerous problems. That’s why in the New Testament we’re told so often about prayer and praying. Like Bruh Paul told the Thessalonians: ‘Pray without ceasing.’ (1 Thess.5:17) That doesn’t necessarily mean every minute of every day, but on a regular basis. Prayer should just be a thought away from our minds. And Bruh Paul told Timothy that ‘I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.’ (1 Tim.2:8) 

Meanwhile James admonishes: ‘Is any among you afflicted (suffering)? let him pray. Is any merry? Let him sing psalms. Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with the oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. Confess your faults (trespasses) one to another, that ye may be healed. The effectual (effective) fervent prayer (supplication) of a righteous man availeth much.’ (James 5:13-16) 

Yuh see friends, prayer is helpful in every situation of our daily walk with Christ! Be it in the church or out of it. And Bruh Paul reminds us in Ephesians, that even when we put on the life-saving armour of God, we still need prayer to help us along. ‘Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.’ (Eph.6:18) 

And the scholars explain: ‘6:18. Praying is grammatically linked to “stand” in verse 14. Without prayer, God’s armour is inadequate to achieve victory. Prayer is indispensable. Always means “on every occasion,” that is, when Satan attacks. In the Spirit signifies that with the Spirit’s help such prayer for divine aid is to be made. Watching thereunto means ‘being vigilant in this very matter” of prayer. They are to pray not just for themselves but also for all saints; spiritual combat is both and individual and corporate matter.’ 

Oh my people, I couldn’t have put it any better. And I believe the best way to end this refresher course on prayer is with the prayer that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ taught us. ‘After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (the evil one): For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen!’ (Matt.6:9-13) 

Please friends and fellow believers, let’s remember to never belittle the power of prayer, instead, let’s wisely lift it up to the great heights that it is supposed to take in our lives nuh, because it’s all for our benefit. Much LOVE!

…to pray…and yet to pray…and to keep on praying…that is wisdom of the highest order…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 April 2018 Psalm 146:2.

Psalm 146:2.    While I live will I praise the Lord: I will sing praises unto my God while I have any being.

Here I am again my brethren, writing from the ninth-floor neurological section of St. Michael’s Hospital in the great city of Toronto. I could have written the Bit before, but at first I was somewhat on the lazy side and slept out the whole morning, then in the afternoon my family came, as well as the families of the other three patients in the room, so it was somewhat noisy and inappropriate. That’s why I wanted a private room, but apparently they don’t have any here. But that’s okay, we’ll manage with the Lord’s help, as always. 

Now it’s somewhat quieter so here we are on a Sunday, of course opening with praise and worship, something from Frances Crosby called ‘Praise Him!’ And do I ever have cause to praise our great God, so please do it with me. In strong voice and sincere hearts let’s sing at evening song. (smile) ‘Praise Him! Praise Him! Jesus, our blessed Redeemer! Sing, O Earth, His wonderful love proclaim! Hail Him! Hail Him! Highest archangels in glory; Strength and honor give to His holy Name! Like a shepherd, Jesus will guard His children, In His arms He carries them all day long. 

(Refrain: Praise Him! Praise Him! Tell of His excellent greatness; Praise Him! Praise Him! Ever in joyful song! Praise Him!) Praise Him! Jesus, our blessed Redeemer! For our sins He suffered, and bled, and died. He our Rock, our hope of eternal salvation, Hail Him! Hail Him! Jesus the Crucified. Sound His praises! Jesus who bore our sorrows, Love unbounded, wonderful, deep and strong. 

(Refrain) Praise Him! Praise Him! Jesus, our blessed Redeemer! Heav’nly portals loud with hosannas ring! Jesus, Savior, reigneth forever and ever; Crown Him! Crown Him! Prophet, and Priest, and King! Christ is coming! over the world victorious, Pow’r and glory unto the Lord belong. (Refrain)’ 

Yes friends, Jesus is the ONE and ONLY ONE! That’s why I’ve decided like the psalmist did, that ‘While I live will I praise the Lord: I will sing praises unto my God while I have any being.’ 

We can’t do any better than that my people, but we can surely do worse. Like the psalmist continues: ‘Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man (human being), in whom there is no help. His breath goeth forth, (his spirit departs) he returneth to the earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.’ (Ps.146:3-4)

And that’s no lie, as we all know. But what some of us refuse to realize is what the psalmist says after that. ‘Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God: Which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth for ever: Which executeth judgement (justice) for the oppressed: which giveth food to the hungry. 

The Lord looseth (gives freedom to) the prisoners: The Lord openeth the eyes of the blind: the Lord raiseth them that are bowed down: the Lord LOVETH the righteous: The Lord preserveth (watches over) the strangers; he relieveth the fatherless and widow: but the way of the wicked he turneth upside down (makes crooked). The Lord shall reign for ever, even thy Gods, O Zion, unto all generations. Praise ye the Lord.’ (Ps.146:5-10) 

And that penultimate sentence is the gospel truth friends. Our great God will reign for ever, because there is none else like Him. He made the world and all there is, so how can anybody or thing be greater than Him eh? No way Jose! And until mankind truly realizes that fact, we’ll always be in trouble. But our God is also merciful and magnanimous. He doesn’t want to punish or get rid of us all who don’t live according to His rules and regulations. 

Listen to Bruh David, as he explains: ‘The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous (abounding) in mercy (LOVING-kindness). He will not always chide (strive): neither will he keep his anger for ever. He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us for our iniquities. For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy (LOVING-kindness) toward them that fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. 

Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him. For he knoweth our frame (understands our constitution); he remembereth that we are dust. As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more (not remember it). But the mercy (LOVING-kindness) of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children’s children.’ (Ps.103:8-17) 

Yes, my people, that’s the wonderful kind of God we serve and worship. Let’s shout it out to the world, to the many who don’t know Him, or simply refuse to accept Him because they think He is otherwise than He really is. And the best way we can do that is by sharing His LOVE and mercy with the unfortunates of the world. You know what we need to do, so I won’t belabor the point. (smile) 

In closing I’d just like to say thanks to all of you who have written in with your prayers and good wishes. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart and appreciate them all. Please keep on reading the Bit and letting it be a catalyst for your LOVE walk with Jesus. Much LOVE!

…there is no better walk…than that with Jesus…  

P.S. To my St. Francis Parishioners, sorry I had to miss our Spring Fling on Saturday night. I just know that it was most excellent, because that’s how we party. Much LOVE!

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 April 2018 Proverbs 8:32.

Proverbs 8:32.   Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways.

Well hello there mih loverlies! This is the ole fellow reporting from St. Mike’s alive and kicking, thanks to our great and wonderful God! Praise His Holy Name! Yes friends, I guess with all the prayers you all sent up to heaven on my behalf, the Lord had no option but to leave me down here. His very words were; ‘If you all want him down there so badly, you all might as well keep him. I can wait for him a li’l longer. (smile) 

The operation appears to have been a success, except that it seemed to take a little longer than expected, because the tumour was tied up in some of the other organs, but you know I knew nothing about that, because I was out for the count. I am feeling not too bad now late in the evening, so I decided to write the Bit. 

And as we know today is Saturday, so we have to look at some of the quotes from our friend Anselm, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And I think this first one refers perfectly to my current situation. ‘The future rewards those who press on. I don’t have time to feel sorry for myself. I don’t have time to complain. I’m going to press on.’ And that is exactly what I intend to do; press on regardless, especially as the Lord has at last begun my refurbishment. (smile) 

Then there is this one: ‘A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life.’ That’s so true my brethren, life is short, so why waste any of it eh? This one is also true: ‘If you’re walking down the right path and you’re willing to keep walking, eventually you’ll make progress.’ But note, it needs the right path, and you’re supposed to keep on walking, not stop sometime when you get tired. 

And as usual we’ve left the best for last: ‘Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it’s only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential.’ And friends that wagon you need to hitch yourself to, the one that is so much larger and better than you is simply Jesus! 

There is nothing better nor larger than Him. And I know that all of you who are reading this know that’s true, that’s why you’ve hitched your wagon to His bright and everlasting star. That’s why Cousin Sol gives us this talk on the everlasting value of wisdom, starting with our Bit. ‘Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways.’ 

And regardless of what wagon you hitch your star to, you will have to follow its rules and regulations, if you want to get ahead in its programme. And that goes for Jesus even more. As Cousin Sol continues: ‘Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not (do not disdain it).’ (Prov.8:33) But sadly a lot of us disdain the rules of Jesus and thus suffer the consequences, for there are always consequences to every action, good or bad. 

However, Cousin Sol tells us that ‘Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors. For who findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the Lord. But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me LOVE death.’(Prov.8:34-36) Yeh mih people, if we don’t like wisdom, then death is our friend, and that’s truly a sad reflection on us. 

Because the Good Book has given us so many promises when we follow the Lord seriously. Hear the Psalmist. ‘Praise ye the Lord (sing Hallelujah). Blessed is the man that feareth the Lord, that delighteth greatly in his commandments. His seed shall be mighty upon the earth: the generation of the upright shall be blessed. Wealth and riches shall be in his house: and his righteousness endureth (lasts) for ever.’ (Ps.112:1-3) 

What more can we ask eh good people of God? Nothing really, for God gives us all that we need when we stand strong with him. And we’ll close with some more wise words from James on the subject. ‘But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed (what he does).’ (James 2:25) 

Oh friends, we must keep on hearing and doing the word if we want to be truly blessed. That’s wisdom at its highest! Thanks for all your prayers. You can see that the Lord answered them. (smile) And as I write this there’s an emergency situation in the bed to my right. Hope the gentleman makes it. Talk to you tomorrow, the Lord willing. Much LOVE!

…a word to the wise…is usually sufficient….  

P.S. The gentleman next door did make it. Thanks to God and good and quick medical help. Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 April 2018 Joshua 1:9.

Joshua 1:9.    Have not I commanded thee? be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest. 

Well a good morning to you my friends and Scrip-Bit family! Today is the Big Day! Yes, today the ole fella is going down to St. Michael’s Hospital, in Toronto, at long last, to have the tumour growing on his Pituitary Gland removed. Glory Be! And that’s why the Bit is so early. 

The tumour’s been hanging around for so long now that I’ve become accustomed to it, and after it’s removed, I’ll have to adjust to a new normal. But I can handle that. (smile) So all I’m asking is for you faithful fellow believers to bombard heaven with prayers for the success of the operation. (smile) Ask the Lord to guide the hands and hearts and heads of the medical team to do their best work, and to keep me strong and faithful. 

Now today is also Friday, so we have to consider the workingman’s song of freedom from unfair labour. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! Our best friend, the weekend is here again! Time to let our hair down again and enjoy ourselves as much as we can, with whatever the crazy world has to offer; say, sex, drugs and rock and roll! Whatever is out there is ours for the taking. And yuh better believe we going to take it in these two short days off. Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’  

Ah mih people, the workingman surely goes out on a limb, but we believers in Jesus Christ can’t afford to do the same. We’re not allowed to be that lustful and licentious because our Lord and Saviour has set up boundaries of proper standards for us to adhere to. That’s why our Friday Chant is so much different from the ordinary workingman’s song. 

So let’s chant our Friday Chant with as much enthusiasm as the workingman sang his song nuh. As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen!’ 

Yeh friends, our song is much more reserved, excluding the extremes that the workingman seems to favour. And as we come to our Bit, I have to chuckle because I came down here just now wondering what I was going to write about, but the Lord beat me to it. I usually put some bookmarks in my Bible between the pages of scripture I’m interested in using that day. 

Now apparently when I used something from the first chapter of Joshua recently, I left a bookmark there, so the Bible naturally opened there this morning, and the first words to greet my eyes were those of our Bit. ‘Have not I commanded thee? be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.’ 

Obviously the Lord was telling me that was my duty for today; to stand up strong and courageous, don’t be afraid of what I was about to go through. In other words reassuring me of His continual presence and His LOVING-kindness, and His promise to bring me through all adversity in better shape than before. 

Glory to our great and wonderful God my brethren! How can I not trust and be faithful to Him under those conditions eh? And in all my messages, that’s all I’m trying to get through to us: if you trust the Lord He will be faithful to you. As Bruh David so stoutly and proudly declares in the opening verse of Psalm 27: ‘The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?’ (Ps.37:1) 

Ah my people, when you have the Lord as your ally, you need to fear no one or nothing at all, for He is always with you, wherever you go, looking out for you in all situations. And this is most appropriately set out in Psalm 91 – God is a refuge and fortress. ‘Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the Most High, thy habitation (dwelling place); There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. 

For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear (lift) thee up in their hands, lest thou dash (strike) thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder (cobra); the young lion and the dragon (serpent) shalt thou trample under feet’ (Ps.91:9-13) 

Oh friends, what glorious promises! And that’s not all. Hear the Lord’s declaration: ‘Because he has set his LOVE upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and show him my salvation.’ (Ps.91:14-16) 

Wow people, wow! I don’t remember if I featured this scripture in my recent messages on the promises of God, but if I didn’t, it certainly deserved to be amongst them. And if I did, we can certainly be reminded of it, so that we can stay faithful and courageous in the strength and joy of our God. 

Now I don’t know what shape I will be in tomorrow, so I can’t say exactly when the Bit will come out, but the Lord willing, it WILL come out at some time. So please remember me in your prayers, and talk to you some time tomorrow, the Lord in favour. 

And I don’t see why the Lord won’t be in favour, since I haven’t really accomplished the desires He’s put in my heart to exalt and glorify Him. So if He took me home now, then He’d be wasting all those desires. And if there’s one thing I know, our God is wise, He doesn’t waste his desires. (smile) Much LOVE!

…trust in the Lord with all your heart…and lean not unto thine own understanding…  (Prov.3:5)

 

 

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 April 2018 Romans 10:9.

Romans 10:9.    That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

And thankfully the spring rains are falling gently on the land, caressing it, making it ready for the farmer’s seed and the riotous outburst of nature that comes after a cold and dark season of winter. Glory to our great God my people, for arranging the seasons the way He has, bringing us out of winter’s darkness with a sudden burst of light and colour in spring! 

And before we get into the meat of the message here are some hors d’oeuvres to whet our appetites. (smile) The first one tells us that ‘Prayer is our greatest privilege and our highest responsibility.’ And that’s gospel truth! I just wish more of us would realize the incredible importance of prayer in our own lives, as well as that of Christ’s body, the church, for that is the way we communicate with the Spirits of heaven. 

And the next sampling of soul food (smile) comes from Watchman Nee (1903-1972) a renowned Chinese preacher, who was locked up for his faith in 1952 and died in prison in 1972. He says: ‘Prayer is the most wonderful act in the spiritual realm, as well as the greatest mystery in the spiritual realm.’ 

More gospel truth my people! There is nothing like prayer in either realm; it both soothes the soul and allows us to communicate with our heavenly Father. Glory to God! 

Now let’s continue with the series of messages on the great and wonderful, ever-faithful promises of our unbelievable God, beginning with this heart-warming and reassuring scripture in our Bit. ‘That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.’ 

Oh friends, what a glorious promise, the most important and extravagant of them all. Salvation is so easy; believing and confessing, that I can’t understand why everybody isn’t clamouring for it. I guess many of us are following the human edict, that if it’s too easy, it’s too good to be true. 

But friends this is not a human, but a divine edict from high heaven, so it doesn’t necessarily follow the laws and rules of man. Remember our God’s thoughts and ways are much higher than ours. So please, please believe and accept it nuh, because our eternal destination – inside with Christ, or outside in hell fire with Lucifer – depends solely on our acceptance of Christ as Lord and Saviour or not. 

And Bruh Paul continues: ‘For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed (put to shame). For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek (Gentile): for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.’ (Rom.10:10-12) 

Oh my brethren, it’s the same God that rules over ALL, and is generous to ALL who call upon Him! And the scholars explain: ‘10:10-11. Confession is made unto salvation: One is not saved by his mouth’s confession, but rather, the mouth testifies readily of the grace of God in Christ which has been received by faith.’ So the mouth is basically just a reflection of what’s in the heart! The heart is the true receptacle of our faith. 

Now let’s turn to this monster promise of God, that we all know and like to quote, but oftimes ignore it. Listen to Isaiah as he declares of the Lord: ‘Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. 

He giveth power to the faint (weak); and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.’ (Is.40:28-31) 

Oh brother, oh brother; what a promise! And we’ve seen it kept right throughout the scriptures, from Abraham to Bruh Paul! All the men of faith were able to withstand much pressure and continue God’s work because of His enabling Spirit. 

And Bruh David weighs in with his two cents worth (smile): ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with LOVING-kindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.’ (Ps.103:2-5) 

Mamacita! What else can we ask for eh? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! For the Lord provides everything we need…and in abundance too, for He’s a most generous and magnanimous God! So there are the facts friends. I can only tell you about them, I can’t make you accept them, but the wise will. 

And for those of us who have shown our wisdom by accepting Christ as our Lord and Saviour, let’s declare to the unbelieving world, our present situation in Christ through our Wednesday Wail. In loud voice and strong sense of purpose now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

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

And that future with Christ is truly mind boggling! Much LOVE!

…to live with…and for Christ…is the most awesome and amazing life possible…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 April 2018 Matthew 28:20b.

Matthew 28:20b.    and, lo, I am with you alway(s), even unto the end of the world.

Aw friends, what kind of crazy, evil, ungodly, unsafe world are we living in eh, when in broad daylight a young man can drive his vehicle into a crowd of innocent people and kill nine or ten of them and injure a whole lot more? Or another young person can enter a restaurant and just open fire with his AK 15, or some such firearm and kill four people? 

The first incident happened in Toronto, the northern section of the city yesterday, and the second down in Nashville, U.S, a couple days ago. It seems we’re safe NOWHERE on the planet. Steups! And then the popular excuse is that these people have mental issues. Chuh! Well then too large a proportion of our society has mental problems! And if that’s a fact, then why aren’t we addressing them properly eh? 

Ah mih people, nowadays our favourite pastime seems to be talk; talk for just talk sake, and get nothing done. Our society is fast going to hell in a basket and our politicians and power brokers still only seem to care about getting in power and lining their own pockets. It’s a good thing that we believers have Jesus and His many faithful promises to hang on to yes, otherwise I don’t know what would happen to us nuh. 

And as we continue looking at some of the many wonderful promises that our faithful God has made us, we open with one of the most steadfast and uncompromising, that contained in our Bit: ‘and, lo, I am with you alway(s), even unto the end of the world.’ 

What a powerful promise that is my fellow believers, from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ as He sent the disciples out to proselytize the world! And it’s that kind of stuff that we need to hang on to as we navigate this unsafe and crazy world; look to heaven rather than to mankind who is as evil as the night is dark. 

And if that doesn’t quell your worries, then listen to this promise. ‘Let your conversation (conduct) be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath saith, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Heb.13:5) 

Glory be my breddren! What wonderful words of assurance given to us by our God and our Creator and Saviour. The author of Hebrews is there reiterating God’s promise to Joshua when He made him leader of the Israelites after the death of Moses: ‘There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life, as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Josh.1:5) 

However friends, there is ONE thing God asked of Joshua, and is also asking of us in these dangerous and trying times: ‘Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left that thou mayest prosper (have success, or act wisely) whithersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:6) 

Yes my fellow believers, regardless of the number of great promises God has made us, we still have to take them to heart and stand strong under them. That’s our part of the bargain: stand strong and steadfast in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour! But that’s exactly what a lot of us are not doing, thus our fears, worries and anxieties every day of our lives. 

Now hear these marvellous words of Bruh Paul to the Roman church on the separation of Christ from His people. ‘Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? 

As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the LOVE of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ (Rom.8:34-39) 

Oh precious people of God, if that powerful assurance of Christ’s irremovable presence from our lives doesn’t move and reassure you, then I don’t know what will nuh! That’s possibly one of the greatest promises a believer has to hang on to. Once Christ comes into our lives, we cannot be separated from Him. He will NEVER leave or forsake us, unless we push Him away or turn against Him. 

Therefore friends, in these troubled times, I implore us to hold on tightly to the promises of our ever-faithful God, to stand strong and courageous as He asks of us, so that we can conquer this evil word in His name. Now let’s go home showing the world that we are indeed standing strong in Christ. Let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with much vim and vigour. 

As one loud and purposeful voice now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

And if we’re sincere, then let’s go out and share Jesus’ LOVE and everlasting friendship with world, as He desires of us. Much LOVE!

…standing on the promises of God…standing safe and secure… on the promises of God, my Lord…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 April 2018 Proverbs 1:33.

Proverbs 1:33.    But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet (secure, at ease) from fear of evil.

One more morning…one more Monday… to go out and face the cold, cruel and evil world! Or would you rather not be around to face it eh, have your picture staring back at you from the obits instead? (smile) Definitely not! Most of us would vote for seeing another Monday morning though they seem to cause us constant distress. 

That’s possibly because what awaits us on the other side of the river appears to be so grand, too good to be true, and nobody has ever come back from there and told us the real story.  So until we just can’t help it, do otherwise, we’ll stay on this side of the river, unhappily accepting the hell we know, instead of the heaven we don’t.  

But friends, we ought to believe God’s Word because it is true. So if He says a wonderful life awaits us on the other side, why doubt it eh? As we saw yesterday the Bible, though actually written by men, was inspired by God, and one truth from it is greater than the wisdom of all mankind. Anyway, we still on this side, (smile) and we still have Monday to get through, so let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn to help us get started nuh. 

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

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

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

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

Yeh friends, I know our pulses are beating a little faster and the adrenaline is now swiftly coursing through our bodies, so let’s get a move on before we lose the rush nuh. (smile) And today we’re going to continue talking about the great and wonderful promises of God. 

And the first one today is our Bit; wise and holy inspiration of God to Cousin Sol. ‘But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet (secure, at ease) from fear of evil.’ A promise of absolute truth my people! When we listen to God and obey Him, we are not afraid when evil comes against us. Why? 

Because as Jesus told His disciples and consequently promised us: ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ (John 14:27) Wow! What a promise! Exactly what we need in this evil, confused, hateful, ungodly and angry world. And it’s available to whosoever wants it. 

All you have to do is to accept Jesus’ Great Invitation: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt.11:28-30) 

Glory be my breddren! How can you beat that promise eh? No way Jose! And if yuh still having doubts, then try this promise for size. The inspired words of Bruh Paul to the Philippians, after letting them know that he’s been praying for them from the first day that they received Christ. ‘Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.1:16) 

Yeh friends, whatever God begins in us, He will complete it, or keep it going until Jesus returns. There are no if, ands, or buts about that! And we going to end with some more of Bruh Paul’s wise and inspirational words, this time as he talks to the Roman church about life in the Spirit. 

‘Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He spared not his own son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?’(Rom.8:30-32)  

Oh precious people,  if God, gave up His only Son to save us, and if we are obediently following Christ, then God will obviously be on our side. And once He’s with us, NO ONE, or NOTHING can come successfully against us, because God and any one of us constitutes a majority in any situation.  Let’s remember that so we can live it too nuh. More on God’s awesome promises tomorrow, if He wants it that way. Much LOVE!

…God’s promises were never made to be broken…but for each and every one to be fulfilled…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 April 2018 2 Timothy 3:16.

2 Timothy 3:16.    All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.

Ah mih people, this Sunday morning we can go to the Lord’s sanctuary without any fear of slipping and sliding or getting in an accident because of the dreadful weather! Glory be! The ice is slowly disappearing as the weather gets a little warmer. But last week it was something else. And that ice-storm was not half as bad as one a few years ago. They are worse than just the ordinary snow storms. 

Anyway, that’s in the past now, let’s look to the glorious spring weather that’s ahead of us and go to fellowship with other faithful believers, to sing and praise and make merry to Almighty God, and receive His resurgent confidence and enthusiasm in our tired and empty souls. Some of us might need two weeks resurging, since we didn’t get any last week. (smile) 

But whatever, or how much ever we need, we know we will get it in the Lord’s house, so let’s open as always with some praise and worship,  with this foundational hymn ‘Standing on the Promises of God’ written by Russel Kelso Carter, a professor in the Pennsylvania Military College of Chester.

 His bio reads thus: ‘While there he was licensed to preach by the Methodist Episcopal Church. He became very active in leading camp meetings and revivals. After failing health forced him to abandon this work, he studied and became a medical doctor as well as a writer. He wrote novels as well as hymns.

Yeh friends, it’s obvious he knew what he was talking about when he wrote the hymn. So let’s declare it now nuh, with joyful voices and sincere hearts, because those are such wonderful promises we have to stand on, that mere words alone couldn’t do them justice. 

As one glorious choir now: ‘Standing on the promises of Christ my king, through eternal ages let his praises ring; glory in the highest, I will shout and sing, standing on the promises of God. (Refrain: Standing, standing, standing on the promises of God my Savior; standing, standing, I’m standing on the promises of God.) 

Standing on the promises that cannot fail, when the howling storms of doubt and fear assail, by the living Word of God I shall prevail, standing on the promises of God. [Refrain] Standing on the promises of Christ the Lord, bound to him eternally by LOVE’S strong cord, overcoming daily with the Spirit’s sword, standing on the promises of God. 

[Refrain] Standing on the promises I cannot fall, listening every moment to the Spirit’s call, resting in my Savior as my all in all, standing on the promises of God. [Refrain].’ 

Oh friends, oh friends, doesn’t that just elevate your soul and spirit to new heights of rapture? (smile) It ought to since we have such golden promises made to us by a most faithful Deity. And today friends, we are going to check out some of those awesome promises found in God’s word. 

And we’ll begin with one that lays the foundation for them all, the words of Bruh Paul to Timothy re the truth of scripture, as stated in our Bit. ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.’ 

That is the first step my brethren; to acknowledge that the word of God is true, and though written by mortal men, was inspired by the Holy Spirit of God, under God’s authority and guidance, and it is indeed a guide book for earthly living in righteousness. As Bruh Paul continues: ‘That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished (equipped) unto all good works.’ (2 Tim.3:17) There we have it friends, guidance and regulations to lead a godly life. 

Here are some useful explanations from the scholars. ‘3:14-17. Inspiration of God (lit. “God-breathed.”) describes the unique character of scripture. It is not only written by men, but authored by God. For doctrine means to tell one what to believe. For reproof means to tell one what is wrong. For correction means to tell one how to correct wrong. 

For instruction in righteousness means to tell one how to live. Perfect (Gr. artios, “proficient, capable”) is having everything needed to do what God wants.Thoroughly furnished means “thoroughly equipped.” God’s inspired Word, properly used and applied, provides all we need for life and ministry.’  

Mama Yo mih breddren! Where can you find another all-encompassing tome like that eh? Nowhere else in the world but in the Christian faith! Glory to our great God, who in His endless wisdom gave us ALL that we needed to live the kind of life He desires of us. And so having acknowledged that the word of God is true, let’s look at a couple of promises that are contained therein. 

The first one is a scripture that we all know and quote, but how many of us truly believe it eh? It’s from the prophet Jeremiah and says: ‘For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end.’ (Jer.29:11) 

But that doesn’t come just so friends. We have to pray, call upon God, seek Him with all our hearts, live the kind of life He expects of us, then we’ll see His mercy and favour and the plan He has designed for each one of His people. Now I think we only have space for one more promise; that from Bruh Paul to the Philippians: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.4:19) 

Yeh friends, because of the Philippians sacrifice on behalf of Bruh Paul, God will meet their need in a glorious manner through Jesus Christ. The same applies to us today my fellow believers – live the way God desires, and you’ll want for nothing. And we’ll end with these most appropriate words of Bruh Paul. ‘Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.’ (Phill.4:20) 

More on the promises of God tomorrow friends, God willing. Till then, please walk safely with Him. Much LOVE!

…some promises have conditions…others don’t…but they are ALL readily available…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 April 2018 James 1:2.

James 1:2.    My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials).

At last friends, at long last, some of the ice that’s covered the ground from the ice storm a week ago has finally melted…Yay! And we can now see some of Mother Earth’s dirtyish brown grass with specks of green thrown in for good measure. Glory be! 

But not all of the ice has melted, there are still several patches of it all around. And from my kitchen window I can see about three or four solid boulders of ice lying at the side of the road, and the big lump of ice that clogged the entrance to my lane when they cleaned the main road last week is still there, blocking traffic and making it difficult to enter the lane. 

But God is good! Let’s remember that, and a few weeks from now when spring has finally sprung and the leaves and beautiful blossoms are out in all their glory, we’ll look back and laugh at this inconvenience. Hn, hn! Yeh mih people, it’s a good thing the Lord blessed us with short memories. 

However, it’s Saturday, so let’s turn our attention to some of this week’s quotes from our friend Anselm, as he aspires to inspire us to a better tomorrow. Here is the first one: ‘Learn to value yourself, which means fight for your happiness.’ 

Oh my people, too many of us don’t value ourselves highly enough, we have a poor self-image, thus others take advantage of us. Therefore we need to raise our self- image through Bible study and assertive action if we want to control our lives and thus our happiness. And the next quote is basically about the same thing; taking control of our lives. 

‘Don’t let other people decide whether you are going to have a fantabulous or bad day, make that decision yourself.’ Again, too many of us allow others to run our lives and decide what kind of day we’re going to have. That is counter productive friends. We have to learn to stand on our own two feet and make those kinds of decision for ourselves, otherwise we’ll always be at the mercy of others. 

And the final quote says: ‘If you are not willing to risk the usual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.’ In other words, take a chance! And that is gospel truth! If you never take chances and just stay with the tried and true, the same old, same old, then the same old, same old is all you’ll ever get. 

Our society and our Christian faith was built on our forefathers and the early Christians taking chances, even when it meant running afoul of the authorities and thus possible loss of life. And as we Christians know, whenever we step out to do something for Christ, the enemy will most likely come against us and try to prevent us from doing it. 

But because of Christ’s promises and His power to enable us to do anything, we don’t have to shy away, but press on regardless. And we do that through faith. But faith doesn’t just come like by wishing it. On the contrary it’s something we have to build, through constant hard work and adversity. 

And Cousin Bobby (Bobby Schuller- Hour of Power) says that ‘Faith is not a leap, but an enduring daily trust that God can do the impossible in your life.’ And that’s no lie! Each and every day we awaken we have to learn to keep the trust in God we earned the day before, and to build on it, so that tomorrow it will be even stronger. That’s how we build faith my brethren – from day to day, through whatever trial comes our way. 

That brings us to our Bit, some rather interesting words from James, Jesus’ brother, in his epistle to the Christians dispersed around the world. ‘My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials).’ Now who wants to find trials joyful eh? Nobody! But friends, that’s the only way we’ll grow in faith. 

As James continues: ‘Knowing this, that the trying (testing) of your faith worketh (produces) patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire (complete), wanting (lacking) nothing.’ James 1:3-4) Yeh friends, as long as we are believers, our faith will always be tested, and we need to stand fast so that we can grow. 

And the scholars got it right: ‘1:4. The natural response to adversity is to escape it. But God uses trouble to mature His people.’ Oh, we certainly know it’s rough, and do try to escape, but much to our dismay, that’s just part of the life of faith we’re trying live. 

The scholars further tell us: ‘1:2-3. In this epistle on Christian living, James opens with a most crucial topic: the trials of life. These verses describe the various testings – whether from the world and Satan, or from God – into which godly Christians fall (Gr. peripipto). 

These “negative” experiences are to be accepted with great joy, not for the sake of the trial itself but because of the positive work God can accomplish through the testing….It is not merely one’s presence in such trials but one’s victory over them that brings spiritual growth and maturity. Those Christians whom God can use the most are those whom God has bruised the most.’ 

Unfortunately mih people growing in spiritual faith is not easy, as can be seen from the lives of all great men of faith, especially Jesus. But they all kept constantly looking to the heavenly Father for the strength to carry on, and He gave it to them. Likewise, if we look to our heavenly Father for strength and wisdom to carry on in tough times, He WILL give it to us. 

So friends, whatever is coming against us right now, let’s try and think of it in joyful terms nuh, (smile) believing that God is allowing it for a greater purpose than we can imagine, and lean on Him for the help to come through it successfully. He will not disappoint us. That’s His faithful promise! Much LOVE!

…spiritual growth…is based on fleshly suffering…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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