Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 January 2020 Philippians 4:19.

Philippians 4:19.    ​But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Jesus Christ.
 
And the snow did fall…in copious quantities too, but thankfully my information was wrong, we were only going to get 15 cm of snow, not the 50 I wrote about yesterday. However, the east coast province of Newfoundland and Labrador did receive a solid walloping over the weekend culminating in some 70 cm of the white stuff. Obviously everything was shut down under such a blanket of snow, with power outages and other necessities sadly lacking. 

Apparently even the snow trucks had to be taken off the road, since the blizzard was so bad that visibility was impossible. Friends, please, let’s pray for them and offer any other help that we can, because we never know when it will be our turn to be in such a despairing and disastrous situation. 

So closer to home now, the snow is finished falling but we had some freezing rain overnight and with the drop in temperature, it’s possibly slick and icy out there. So please be careful if you’re venturing out. And please don’t use the weather conditions as a convenient excuse not to go to church, (smile) although some of us will find it extremely difficult, even impossible to get out and about. 

And having said all of that, let’s turn to our multi-purpose in the Lord’s sanctuary today; to worship our great God, give Him much thanks and praise from sincere and overflowing hearts of gratitude, to enjoy sweet and encouraging fellowship with other believers, to hear the awesome Word of God which refreshes and renews us and gives us oodles of confidence and reassurance to face the fallen world in which we live! 

Now how can we get all of that if we don’t go to church eh, or have a gathering of two or three somewhere convenient? For Christ did say that wherever two or three are gathered together in His name, that He would be right there in the midst of them. (Matt. 18:20) So if only a small gathering is possible, then so be it, but a big gathering would be nicer. (smile) And today’s opening song of worship is indeed very appropriate for these troubled and disastrous times. It’s aptly titled ‘Lord I Need You’ 

And do we ever need Him friends, so let’s raise our voices in sweet harmony as we call out to our Lord and Saviour for the help that only He can give. ‘(Chorus: Lord, I need You, oh, I need You Every hour I need You My one defense, my righteousness Oh God, how I need You) Lord, I come, I confess Bowing here I find my rest Without You I fall apart You’re the One that guides my heart (Chorus: Lord, I need You, oh, I need You Every hour I need You My one defense, my righteousness Oh God, how I need You) 

Where sin runs deep Your grace is more Where grace is found is where You are And where You are, Lord, I am free Holiness is Christ in me (Chorus: Lord, I need You, oh, I need You Every hour I need You My one defense, my righteousness Oh God, how I need You) Teach my song to rise to You When temptation comes my way And when I cannot stand I’ll fall on You Jesus, you’re my hope and stay. Lord, I need You, oh, I need You Every hour I need You My one defense, my righteousness Oh God, how I need You. I need You every hour, Oh Lord how I need You…Oh how I need You. yes Lord, I need You, every hour of every day…That’s how much I need you.’  

Ah mih people, from all of that we should see how desperately we need Jesus Christ and all that He stands for. And what is a need you ask? Here’s something from a website that I forgot the name. But it says: ‘A need is something that is necessary for an organism to live a healthy life. Needs are distinguished from wants in that, in the case of a need, a deficiency causes a clear adverse outcome: a dysfunction or death. In other words, a need is something required for a safe, stable and healthy life (e.g. food, water, shelter) while a want is a desire, wish or aspiration. 

When needs or wants are backed by purchasing power, they have the potential to become economic demands. Basic needs such as water, air, food and protection from environmental dangers are necessary for an organism to live. In addition to basic needs, humans also have needs of a social or societal nature such as the human need to socialize or belong to a family unit or group. Needs can be objective and physical, such as the need for food, or psychological and subjective, such as the need for self-esteem. Needs and wants are a matter of interest in, and form a common substrate for, the fields of philosophy, biology, psychology, social science, economics, marketing and politics.’ 

And yes we need all of those things, but even more importantly we need things like spiritual protection, the ability to confess our sins and know we’re forgiven, a place of rest to lay down our burdens, someone to guide us, to help us with righteousness, to provide grace and mercy, freedom from worry and anxiety, a strong tower to fall back on, not forgetting strength and faith to stand strong against temptation! Yes friends, we do need a lot, and Jesus is the ONLY ONE who can satisfy it ALL! He is indeed our ‘hope and stay!’ 

And there’s no better verse in the Good Book that guarantees our needs than Bruh Paul’s words to the Philippians, after they sacrificed from their little to send him a gift. ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Jesus Christ.’ 

And the scholars explain that verse thus: 4:19. Because the Lord is aware of the sacrifice (v.18) that the Philippians made in meeting Paul’s needs, God will surely supply all their need. God will meet their need (1) according to his riches, that is in proportion to His unlimited resources: (2) in glory, that is, He will meet their need “gloriously” or “in a splendid manner”; and (3) by Christ Jesus.’ 

Ah friends, once we have Jesus, we don’t need anything, or anybody else! Let’s remember that and put our whole faith and trust in Him nuh, because He will see us faithfully through this live unto the next one, and long thereafter. Much LOVE!…

so let us come boldly (confidently)…to the throne of grace…that we may obtain mercy…and find grace…to help…in time of need… (Hebs. 4:16)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 January 2020 Galatians 5:13.

Galatians 5:13.    ​For brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by LOVE serve one another.

 

Well friends and neighbours, today is the day of the big snow storm! According to the weather forecasters Southern Ontario will experience oodles of snow from around midday today! And if we do, we can’t really complain nuh because we haven’t seen much of the white stuff so far this winter. But let’s hope and pray that they’re wrong, as they so often are, (smile) and that at least the quantity won’t be as much as forecasted, some 50 centimetres. And that is a lot of snow, which will just cause numerous problems, problems that we can do without right now. 

One last thing about the expected storm: it is blowing in from the south, down in the U.S. Yeh, contrary to popular opinion many of the storms we experience up here, both rain and snow, come from down south and don’t always flow the other way. Not because we’re further north, means that we’re automatically colder and given to more bad weather. In fact, the U.S. often has more bad weather than this blessed northern state! (smile) And since today is Saturday, let’s see what quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

Unfortunately, it seems like he’s only sent us two quotes this week. I can’t find anymore, even checked my deleted files to see if I had deleted any by mistake. So we’ll just have to make do with those two, the first of which says: ‘Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.’ And that’s ever so true! We can never get power, real or imagined, over anything or anyone without some kind of demand being made on us. 

Look at all the high-flying people; athletes, celebrities, politicians, the wealthy, leaders of any type, be they countries or organizations; they all have power, but with that power always comes some sort of responsibility from which they cannot get away. Even as parents, we have power over our children, but we also have a responsibility to raise them right. Now those in power might use it inappropriately and don’t fulfill the responsibility inherent in their positions, like so many are doing nowadays, but believe me, that responsibility will seek them out, and oftentimes cause them to lose their power. 

Ah friends, power is akin to a ravenous beast; it might give you a head start, but it’s always there, nipping at your heels, knocking at your door, ever ready to take it away too. So remember if power is something that you seek, be very careful, because from the outside it looks glorious, but it’s also like a snake in the grass, ready to bite you, to trip you up in a moment. In other words, power cannot be trusted! 

And the next quote simply says: ‘Whatever happens, take responsibility.’ Now if our world would only accept that simple statement eh, what a wonderful place it would be! But sadly, these are the days of irresponsibility; a lot of it fuelled by the hideouts and platforms provided by the  social media scene. Nowadays very few of us are ready to take the blame for our own actions, instead we keep looking for others to pass the blame to. It’s become a sad reflection on our society. Even in the halls of power, amongst international leaders, the blame game is also being played out on that big stage. So what do we expect from lesser mortals then eh? The same kind of irresponsible behaviour. 

But yuh know friends, as the old people would say; do yuh do, but remember the chickens always come home to roost! In other words, have your fun, but your sins will eventually find you out; a day will come when you have to pay for them. As Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) likes to say: ‘You’ll reap what you sow…more than you sow…and later than you sow.’ 

However friends, as true believers in Christ, we’re called to be different to the world. Christ has set us free, for whom the Son sets free is free indeed, (John 8:36) but we’re not to use that freedom irresponsibly. As Bruh Paul warned the Galatians: ‘For brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by LOVE serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself. But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.’ (Gal. 5:13-15) 

Sadly though, we’re doing the opposite of Bruh Paul’s advice; using our liberty in Christ to hate and war with and devour and consume each other. But here’s an interesting take from the scholars on the Liberty and Responsibility of Christians based on 1 Cor. 9:19 ‘One of the results of redemption is the liberty of the believer. Christians are free from depending on the law and free from the bondage of their old nature. Christian liberty releases us to accomplish all our potential. But that liberty should not be abused to justify hedonistic behaviour. 

Although believers live in a state of freedom, concern for reaching others with the gospel and helping weaker believers grow will result in voluntary self-restraint in areas that might offend others, or hinder our efforts in reaching and helping people. Illustration: Paul referred to the example of eating meat offered to idols. He had the freedom to eat such meat, but he suggested that believers abstain because the practice acted as a stumbling block for weaker believers (Rom.14). Application: Believers should act responsibly in exercising their liberty if they wish to be most effective in service to Christ. (First Ref. Lev. 25:10; Primary Ref.. 1 Cor. 9:19; cf. Matt. 7:7).’ 

Yeh friends, though we are free to act as we please, we must always consider how we use that freedom, not take advantage of it to sin, or to hurt others who are not as strong in faith. Let’s ponder on that today nuh, and see how we shape up in the freedom scene, and obviously ask the Lord to help us come higher. Much LOVE!

…freedom is wonderful…but it’s not easy…for it also brings a lot of responsibility…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 January 2020 1 Peter 3:11.

1 Peter 3:11.    ​Let him eschew (turn away from) evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue (pursue) it.
 
And as the day opens, a whole lot of people around the world emit sighs of relief because it’s that magical day called Friday, when their outside labour will end for a couple of days and they won’t have to face snarled, slow-moving traffic twice a day, and engage in mindless chit-chat with selfish, ignorant co-workers whom they thoroughly dislike! (smile) 

Ah friends, what an evil and deceitful world we live in! And the sad part is that it’s getting worse daily. All the negative stuff that’s currently happening in our world is just creating more tension, anxiety and strife between hitherto comfortable people. But all that us true believers in Christ can basically do is pray for world peace and then do our best to pursue it in our families, friends and neighbourhoods! 

And since it’s Friday, we ought to hear what the ordinary workingman has to say for himself. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes! And am I ever grateful for the two days off! I forgot how hard work could really be. Yeh, now that the new year has truly gotten rolling, the work is pouring in and the slave driving task master we have is flashing the whip often because the more work we do means more money for him. And yes, we do get a little more too, but nothing like what he gets, and certainly not in proper proportion to the amount of work we do to create the extra money… 

But I guess them’s the breaks! It’s how the greedy massa and them build the society – the people who do all the back breaking work, get the smallest amount of the harvest. And to tell the truth, in all the different systems we have in the world, one thing stands out…the handful of people who run the show, always get the best part of the pie! Regardless of how much revolution yuh have, it always end up like that. And right now, I too old to fight it anymore, so I’ll just put mih gear in cruise, and just bide mih time till I retire, and until then keep saying, ‘Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Now that’s the unfortunate reaction of a great number of people in our down-pressed world today, and sometimes you can’t give them wrong because they do seem to be fighting a losing battle. However, as true believers in Christ Jesus we don’t have to accept that defeatist philosophy, because in Christ there’s NO giving up. In fact, He has already won the victory and all we now have to do is walk it through in diligent faith and preordained works. That’s why our Friday Chant is so different from the workingman’s song. 

So let’s chant it now nuh, in strong voice and sincere hearts, so that we can be encouraged this Friday morning. ‘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!’ 

You see my faithful brethren, whatever it looks like, and however life turns out, we believers need to keep on keeping on, fixated on the promises and sacrificial work of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, always looking forward to His wonderful  coming in glory, sometime soon, any day now! In the meantime though, one thing we should all be seeking is that very real, but very elusive thing called peace, because it is a very important part of Christ’s kingdom. 

Now let’s look at some of the many scriptures in the Good Book that call for the making of peace. The first one is the prophecy of John the Baptist’s father, Zechariah re John’s work. ‘To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.’ (Luke 1:79) And if a big part of John’s work was to guide us in the way of peace, and John was the forerunner of Christ, then it means that peace was also a big part of Christ’s ministry. 

And He made that clear often enough. One of the Beatitudes, those 8 states of mind and heart  that Christ said was absolutely necessary for Christian discipleship in the Sermon on the Mount is: ‘Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.’ (Matt.5:9) Yes friends, blessed are those who seek peace and make peace and are at peace with God and man. And Peter makes it quite clear that if we want to have a good, long life: ‘Let him eschew (turn away from) evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue (pursue) it.’ Yuh see people, we have to make a definite decision and action; pursue peace. It doesn’t just come by desiring it, we have to make it happen! 

And I’m chuckling and a tad confused because I have so many scriptures on peace I don’t know which to share because of our time and space constraints. (smile) But since we can’t ever go wrong with Jesus, listen to Him again. ‘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) Yuh see that, Jesus’ peace is an entirely different kind of peace to what we find in the world. His is the kind that surpasses man’s understanding! (Phil. 4:7) And if we’re smart, we’ll diligently seek for His kind and not the world’s. 

And Hebrews so wisely tells us: ‘Follow (pursue) peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.’ (Heb.12:14) Then James proudly proclaims: ‘And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.’ (James 3:18) Yeh friends, peace is one of the fruits of the Spirit, and you can’t get it unless you sow it. And what better way to end than with one of Jesus’ better known sayings on peace. ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

Oh friends with those encouraging words ringing in our hearts and minds, let’s go out today and in our own li’l way pursue peace nuh, because that’s the only way our world will ever improve! Much LOVE!

…as much as possible…follow peace with all men…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 January 2020 Ephesians 2:10.

Ephesians 2:10.    ​For we are his workmanship (creation), created in Christ Jesus unto (for) good works, which God hath before ordained (prepared) that we should walk in them.
 
Ah mih people, another alive day in God’s great universe! Wow! What a blessing! That means there’s a purpose for us to accomplish, otherwise the Lord would not have allowed us to see the light of day. So what say we buckle down and seek out that purpose eh, or if we know it, buckle down and do it, be obedient to the Lord’s will, because that’s all He ever asks of us; simple obedience and trust. And right now I want to share an anomaly with you, one  of which I’m not overly proud, (smile) and I think it’s a symptom of the busyness of our lives. Good excuse! 

And the scoop is that the walls of my office and the door are littered with pictures and articles and handwritten stuff supposedly placed there so when I come into it, I can see them and be encouraged and energized. Hn! But the truth is that I come into the office every day I’m at home, but very seldom, no…don’t ever seem to see them. I just walk in and out, spend time writing the Bit and doing other paperwork, and don’t notice any of the supposed encouraging words and pictures. Now why is that eh? 

I really don’t know nuh. Have I just become so accustomed to them as eye candy rather than brain or spirit candy? (smile) And some of the stuff is big and colourful, especially what’s on the door, but I still pass by them every day, sometimes several times, and they still don’t register on my brain cells. This morning though, as I was going back up the stairs to make some caffeine, I was sombrely presented with that realization, most likely by the Lord, because He desired me to share some stuff about Him and us that’s on one of the posters on the door. 

Now I put that up there some time ago, but I don’t think I’ve ever read it, since I put it up. What a crying shame! And though it’s stuff we all ought to know, it’s also stuff that we have to keep hearing about and keep remembering because it mightily affects our faith walk with God. So here’s what the poster says, the info God wanted me to share this Thursday morning in mid January of the upheaval year of 2020. (smile) 

It says: ‘When God created you…HE CREATED A MASTERPIECE! God created something truly special when He created you. Here are just a few things God says about you: You are holy and blameless, redeemed and forgiven. (Eph. 1:4, 7) You are God’s workmanship. (Eph. 2:10) You are more than a conqueror. (Rom. 8:37) You are healed and whole in Jesus. (Is. 53:5. 1 Pet. 2:24) You are greatly LOVED by God. (John 3:16. Eph. 2:4) You are a brand new creation, alive and made new in Christ Jesus. (2 Cor. 5:17) Your strength, your joy, your provision, your confidence and boldness…it is all found in HIM!’ 

Yes my people, all that we are stems directly from Almighty God! Please check out those scriptures for yourselves so that they can energize you and strengthen your faith. And when you sit down and analyze it seriously, the human body is a masterpiece! Just look at how all the different parts interlock together. They all have different functions but are synced are primed down to the nth degree. No man made piece of machinery is as perfectly primed and synced as the human body, God’s greatest creation! 

And when you add all the other things on top of that; things like the LOVE of God, the saving grace of Jesus, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, and faithful promises like salvation and eternal life…Chuh! A Christian must be the masterpiece of the world! The sad fact is that most of us don’t seem to think so. But then too, we ought not to let that most salient fact go to our heads and boast about it, or be exceptionally proud and prideful because of it. (smile) 

That’s why Bruh Paul stops us in our tracks from the very get go: ‘For by grace are ye (you have been) saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: for it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship (creation), created in Christ Jesus unto (for) good works, which God hath before ordained (prepared) that we should walk in them.’ (Eph. 2:8-10) 

Yeh friends, it’s all God’s handiwork; from our physical birth to our spiritual renewal to the good works we do; it was all a part of God’s plan, because He knew the boastful type of being He was going to make. (smile) But that doesn’t stop us from being boastful and full of ourselves! Why yuh think the world is in the sad and sorry state it’s now experiencing eh? Because mankind has gotten too big for his britches and figures that he runs and controls the universe and all the innovations and otherwise come from his wonderful, puny and finite brain. 

He has forgotten that He’s merely dust in a concentrated form, and that to that dust he must eventually return. Neither does he stop to think that he has no control whatsoever over the length of his days on this God-given earth, and that the breath of life he so arrogantly breathes come directly from the Lord God Himself. And friends, until we come to the true and real realization that we are not our own, but God’s, and we ought to bow to His wishes and desires, then our lives will be in a state of constant upheaval. 

Now for those of us who sincerely believe and sincerely try to do His will, let’s go home declaring (yeah!) our Thursday Blessings, so generously bestowed on us by our heavenly Father so that we can do the good works He ordained for us. All together now in loud voice and sincere hearts. ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! 

I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

And one more thing to remember; Jesus desires us to share those blessings with others, just as generously as He shares them with us. Much LOVE!

…blessings are meant to be generously shared…not selfishly hoarded…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 January 2020 Psalm 119:11.

Psalm 119:11.    ​Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
 

And then it was Wednesday – the hump day of the week – but even more importantly, another new day under the Lord’s safe and protective umbrella! Glory Hallelujah! Yeh friends, we’ve been granted another day of life on earth, for which we all ought to be thankful. So let’s do the acclamation thing nuh! 

All together now: ‘This is the day the Lord has made we will rejoice and be glad in it! As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord! That’s for sure! If God be for us, who can be against us eh? Not a single soul! God will provide all my needs according to his riches in glory through Christ Jesus! I will be a lender and not a borrower! I’m the head and not the tail; above and not beneath; a mighty conqueror through Christ Jesus our awesome Lord and Saviour!’ And finally: ‘Something good is going to happen to me today! Yeah! Something good is also going to happen through me today!’ 

Mama Mia! What a whole lot of positive scripture to reinforce our faith my brethren! With all of that flourishing in our souls how can the evil one ever turn us away from Almighty God eh? No way Jose! Ah mih people, we need to know the Word, so when the enemy comes calling we can turn Him away with what our omnipotent and ever-faithful God says about us. That’s why this second section of Psalm 119 – BETH – with the superscription; ‘Thy word have I hid in mine heart’ is so important to a true believer. 

Please read these miraculous, marvelous and momentous words of the psalmist with me. ‘Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed thereto according to thy word. With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments. Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. Blessed art thou, O Lord: teach me thy statutes. With my lips have I declared all the judgements of thy mouth. I have rejoiced in the way of thy testimonies, as much as in all riches. I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto (contemplate) thy ways. I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.’ (Ps. 119:9-16) 

Ah mih people, if only more supposed Christians would read those words and take them to heart eh! Chuh! What a wonderful place our world would be! The psalmist lets us know the right way, right up front: by following God’s Word. And what is God’s Word? According to the scholars: ‘Word (dabar) is an all-embracing term for God’s revelation in any form.’ And we have to be serious about seeking God and His Word. It can’t be just a wishy-washy, sometime, half-hearted thing like so many supposed believers engage in. The psalmist said, ‘with my whole heart.’ And that’s the way we need to come to God – with serious intentions! 

And then he pleads that he be assisted in not straying from the Lord’s commandments. Oh friends, all of us need to plead with God for help on that matter! And what are his commandments? Per the scholars: ‘Commandments (mitswot)  is a word assuming the authority of the commander and the inherent necessity of obeying the content of the charge.’ That means in simple terms, the commander is the boss, and we must obey his orders. And in this case, God is our commander and His word is the command we must obey. 

And friends, our Bit says it all: ‘Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.’ That’s the whole purpose of the exercise; not to sin against our heavenly Father! But we can only do that when we have His Word safely ensconced in our hearts, and more importantly, use it to thwart the flaming darts of the enemy that he sends against us. Then the psalmist asks to be taught the Lord’s statutes. And what are statutes? The scholars explain them thus: ‘Statutes (huqim) is related to a verb meaning “to engrave” and thus implies permanent and unchangeable regulations.’ 

That therefore means God’s regulations are permanent and don’t change, like we tend to say and believe rather conveniently in these supposed modern times of the 21st century. Then the psalmist talks about declaring (yeah!) the Lord’s judgements. The scholars describe then thus: ‘Judgments (mispatim) or ordinances refers to decisions God has made as a judge in order to make earthly behaviour conform to His heavenly standard.’ And we all know that above all, our God is a God of justice and sin has no part in His character whatsoever; but much to our benefit, He is a righteous judge! 

And I like the psalmist’s next statement about rejoicing in God’s testimonies as much as in the wealth of the world. Wish many more of us would treasure the Lord’s testimonies that much and not pay so much attention to earthly riches. And the scholars characterize ‘Testimonies (‘edot) emphasizes  the content of the Word as that which God has testified of Himself and His will.’ And should we ever rejoice in the Lord’s testimonies my people, because it tells us of the greatness of our God! 

Then the psalmist promises to meditate, ponder on God’s precepts and contemplate His ways. Now that friends, is the only manner in which God’s Word can be written in our hearts; through meditation, contemplation and ‘ponderation.’ (smile) And according to the scholars ‘Precepts (piqudim) refers to  instructions from a superior regarding the duties of those under him, in this case, from God to man.’ Again, we can only know our duties by learning them and continually thinking about them as we make every effort to put them into action. 

But yuh know friends, we will never get it right until we learn to take true pleasure in our God and all that He’s said and done, all on our behalf! We all know that we comprehend and understand stuff quicker and more deeply when we enjoy it. And that’s why so many supposed believers have problems understanding and adhering to God’s Word; they don’t take pleasure in it. But if we want to have a clean heart and a right spirit, then we must learn to enjoy God and all that He is! And He’s such a multi-faceted character that unless we spend real time with Him and His Word, we’ll never truly come to appreciate and LOVE and obey Him like we ought to. End of sermon! (smile) 

Now let’s go home declaring (yeah!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful and ecstatic position in our great God. In full 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 when the joy of Jesus is securely planted in our hearts, then we’re assured that our future with Him will indeed be glorious…Mama Yo…more than we can ever ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…our Christian character will show out…in direct proportion to our knowledge of…and obedience to God’s Word…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 January 2020 Hebrews 12:1.

Hebrews 12:1.    ​Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (endurance) the race that is set before us.
 

Greetings and salutations this dreary looking Tuesday morning my Scrip-Bit friends and families! And as Bruh Paul liked to say in his letters to the New Testament churches: ‘Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ. who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world (age), according to the will of God and our Father: To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen!’ (Gal. 1:3-5) Yes my faithful brethren, EVERY DAY, we ought to remember the Father and the wonderful things He’s done for us through Christ Jesus and give Him the necessary praise and thanksgiving! 

And please don’t tell me it’s too difficult, or you’re too busy and you don’t have time…Make time! You make time for other not so important stuff, but you can’t make time for God, the most important thing, being and element in your life? Steups! Just take a moment and consider your state if He had not shown His amazing LOVE and compassion through the incomparable gift of His Son! You’d be headed straight for hell and the eternal company of Lucifer, the fallen angel and now the deceitful, lying devil! 

But through Christ, He’s offered us another option, much better than what we had – eternal life with Him and Christ in heaven – and yuh boldfaced enough to tell me that you can’t make time to spend a few minutes with Him every day! Chuh! Pure foolishness that mih breddren! Anyway, here’s a most appropriate writing for this time of year and our current winter affliction; SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder – from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. And it’s also appropriately titled ‘January.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘It’s January, Lord – The drab, dreary middle – And my thoughts are as drab As the miserable month. Does everybody hit a January slump Or am I the only one? The first week wasn’t too bad: There were Christmas thank-yous to write A few resolutions to store away The huddle of year-end sales. But thank-you notes bring no returns And resolutions are quickly broken and marked-down trinkets fast lose appeal. When You said “Behold I make all things new” Did You forget January, Lord? Or in January do I sometimes forget You?’ 

Ah friends, I think the correct answer is more like the last one – we forget the Lord, because He’s promised NEVER to leave nor forsake us, and He always keep His promises. That we know for a fact. So if any forgetting goes on, it’s most surely on our side of the equation. And the strange thing is that the drearier and more downcast the weather and our souls are, the more we need to find consolation in God, not forget or move further away from Him. It’s like when you’re sick, that’s when you certainly need a doctor, and the worse you get, the more you need the medic! You run to Him more than ever then, not away from him. 

And it’s the same with our great God; we need Him more than ever when things are not going so good. So let’s think on that some today nuh, and see if we’re falling into that common rut. And we should also think on the Bible Promise from the poem, which is our Bit for today. ‘Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (endurance) the race that is set before us.’ 

Yes friends, we have so many heavenly witnesses looking on at our race of faith, who earlier ran the same race and testified to the LOVE and faithfulness of God, that we need to get serious and put aside any and everything that will hinder us in our own faith walk. And please remember that our race of faith is not a sprint, but a long-distance race, a marathon; one that requires lots of endurance and energy, not merely simple patience. As Bruh Paul said to the Roman church: ‘Rejoicing in hope; patient (persevering) in tribulation; continuing instant (steadfastly) in prayer.’ (Rom.12:12) 

That’s the kind of belly and backbone we need to run our race friends! And though we have plenty of other believers to look at as examples, the best and brightest is as the Good Book says: ‘Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher (originator and perfector) of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.’ (Heb. 12:2) 

Oh my people, how can there ever be a better example than our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ eh? NEVER! For He is the One who blazed the trail, made the way, didn’t consider the shame or rejection or all the other negative stuff thrown at Him, and finished the race in steadfast and enduring faith! Wow! What a giant is our Jesus! That’s why the Father exalted Him to sit at His right hand of His throne ‘and given Him a name which is above every other name. That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of (those) things in heaven, and (those) things in earth, and (those) things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.’ (Phil.2:9-11) 

And likewise my brethren, if we are faithful and run our race with an abundance of the necessary Christian elements, then we too will also be rewarded at the end. As Peter calls it: ‘a crown of glory that fadeth not away.’ (1 Pet. 5:4) So let’s up the ante this cold and dreary-looking winter’s day nuh – and even if you’re in the blazing sunshine too! (smile) Let’s raise the level of our faith so that we can witness for Jesus, like the true salt and light we’re meant to be. 

And we can begin doing that by declaring (yeah!) our Tuesday Mantra with strong voice and sincere hearts. As one now: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

Then the next move is to actually go out and share Jesus’ wonderful LOVE and amazing friendship! Much LOVE!

…the race of life…the hardest to run…but the most rewarding to win…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 January 2020 John 16:33.

John 16:33.    ​These things I have spoken unto you, that in me you might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
 
Now this weather scene is getting to be a bit much yes! Can you believe that after a wet, rainy and icy Sunday morning that by ten a.m. the sun had come out and it became clear and dry, though somewhat chilly, and stayed so for the remainder of the day? Wonder what kind of weather we will experience today eh? But I’m not bothering mihself over it nuh, because with it’s contrariness, if you take it on, it will just drive yuh crazy! You just have to be prepared for whatever comes and say, the Lord be praised! (smile) 

And can you also believe that we’re already into half of January? Time sure isn’t wasting time… like some of us! (smile) Wonder how many sure-fire resolutions have been broken already? No doubt many. But it’s Monday, and that tired, sickly, lazy and unenergized feeling is afflicting some of us, like it will always do, so let’s take our problems to the Lord in prayer as we ought to. Let’s humbly, but confidently declare our Monday Morning Battle Hymn and receive His awesome help to cure our ailments. 

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

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. 

We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

And as always, the positive heavenly reply is not long in coming. We soon feel our spirits lifting, our energy pumping up, and our desires for Jesus, His Word and His work burning like a righteous fire in our being! (smile) Like poor Jeremiah who was tired of declaring the Lord’s word because he was being mocked continually, and thus decided to give up speaking it. However he found that he could not. Why? ‘But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing (of holding back) and I could not stay (endure it). (Jer. 20:9) 

Ah friends, many of us sometimes feel like Jeremiah; getting a lot of negative reactions when we try to speak God’s word, but we cannot give up, we have to endure, whatever it takes. It’s that spirit of NEVER GIVING UP, regardless of our circumstances, or who comes against us, that divides Christians from the rest of the human race. Once you become a believer in Jesus Christ, His Holy Spirit fills you with His awesome strength and courage so that you can keep keeping on with Christ as your Guide and Leader. 

He didn’t have it easy on this earth, and neither will we. But as He faithfully promised: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me you might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ And He certainly has friends, by dying on the cross to save our sinful souls, and then coming to life once again, thus defeating, hell, death and the grave for all time! And we’ll just quote a few scriptures to highlight the truth of what Jesus said in our Bit. 

As pertaining to His peace, hear Bruh Paul to the church at Ephesus regarding the unity of ALL believers. ‘For He (Christ himself) is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition (division) between us. Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances: for to make (create) in himself of twain (the two) one new man, so making peace.’ (Eph. 2:14-15) 

Yes precious people, Christ broke down the barrier between Jews and Gentiles, namely the Mosaic Law which was made to protect the Jews from pagan influences, but which they improperly used to make themselves feel superior to the Gentiles. But Jesus got rid of all of that by making us, Christian Jews and Christian Gentiles, One new man, a unified Church. 

And as per having tribulation in this evil world, hear Bruh Paul to Timothy, re the coming days of apostasy (backsliding). ‘Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. But evil men and seducers (imposters) shall wax (grow) worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.’ (2 Tim. 3:12-13) And we certainly are seeing it all in these strife-filled end times. 

And per overcoming the world, listen to these encouraging words of Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘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. 8:37-39) 

So friends, we have it all in Jesus, God Himself, all that we need to successfully navigate this fallen and sinful world. So there is absolutely no need to worry when things seem rough. Just call on Him and He will faithfully see you through. Much LOVE!

…in times of trouble…Jesus is only a prayer away…

 

 

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