Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 March 2020 Hebrews 5:8.

Hebrews 5:8.    ​Though he were a Son, yet  learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.
 
Awright mih bredrin, it’s Saturday, so let’s get busy! And I hear a hoarse groan and sad chuckle, as they ask: ‘Busy doing what eh? The same boring things we’ve been doing for the last how long?’ And I have to answer: ‘I guess so. What else yuh going to do eh? Go out the street and walk around, go to work, go to the park or the supermarket? Yes and no to all of them!’ (smile) Ah friends, it’s indeed a sad time, but also a rather important time of learning; of learning to get along with ourselves, our families and the world around us. 

This time of isolation isn’t just for helping us to stay healthy, but also for learning the Lord’s most important attribute; that of LOVE! For it’s LOVE that truly keeps us going: LOVE for ourselves, our friends and families, the world, and most importantly for God! And I believe our LOVE tank was very near empty, especially in our reverence for God, that’s why we’ve found ourselves in this untenable situation. Anyway, it’s Saturday, so let’s proceed to consider the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And the first one is certainly interesting: ‘If God gives you something you can do, why in God’s name wouldn’t you do it?’ Now that’s a very good question. And I’m being the devil’s advocate here, understanding the operative words to be ‘can do.’ (smile) If you are a believer and God gives you something you can do, why not do it eh? And I guess most of us have no real, sincere, justified answer. We might have a lot of excuses, but no good reason to not do His will. It’s not like He’s given you something that seems impossible. And even then, please remember that our wise and wonderful God, NEVER gives us anything to do without the wherewithal to do it. Matter fix! 

And this next quote is tied into the first: ‘You can’t fulfill your calling in your comfort zone!’ And that’s a fact! For our calling always requires us to get up off of our fat fannies and do something that takes some effort. You can’t just lie back and expect to do what is expected without some blood, sweat and tears. Please remember these reassuring, but also galvanizing words from Jesus: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

Now when you add those marvellous words of our Lord and Saviour to the facts above, that God never gives us something to do without giving us the tools to do them through the awesome power of His Holy Spirit, then we should have no hesitation in getting up and doing what we’re called to do, since we have the assurance and strength of our omnipotent Triune Deity! That leads us into this next quote: ‘If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.’ That’s gospel truth my people! 

And we not talking about Jesus’ comment that what you put in you won’t defile you, but what comes out of you. (Matt. 15:17-20) But we’re referring to the dreams and desires and plans that the Lord has put in your personal portfolio. Yes, the Lord has a special and separate plan for each life He creates, and unless we fulfill that plan, we’re doomed to an unfulfilled life that could eventually include spiritual destruction and hellfire. That’s why it’s oh so important to know, and to hold on tightly to these words spoken through the prophet Jeremiah: ‘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 (a future and a hope).’ (Jer. 29:11) 

Oh friends, if we don’t know that scripture and believe it with every fibre of our being, then we have nothing to really serve as a proper foundation and give us the hope and faith to carry on regardless of whatever happens. And in effect, our lives would have been worthless. But when we accept the Lord promises and all that he has to offer then our lives blossom and good fruit is produced for His kingdom. For as the next quote tells us: ‘I survived because the fire inside me burned brighter than the fire around me.’ 

And that’s more awesome gospel truth my believing brethren! We can only conquer this evil world when the fire in us burns brighter and hotter and longer than that of the world! And remember Jesus said that the world is full of tribulation but in Him we can find peace since he’s overcome hell death and the grave… And all His followers declared a loud and proud: ‘Thank You Jesus!’ And John reassures us of this fact when he reminds us: ‘Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them (the spirits of the antichrist): because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.’ (1 John 4:4) 

Mama Mia! That’s why the fire inside believers burns brighter than that that’s in the world: our Lord and Saviour, through his Holy Spirit dwells within us and He’s a million times stronger and hotter than Beelzebub who rules over the world! Thus we come to this last quote: ‘Grow through what you go through.’ And that’s the motto for the true believer. You can only grow when you go through something that flexes your muscles; physically, spiritually, emotionally and mentally. Without a testing of our strength and endurance, there is NO GROWTH! 

So for those of us who want to grow in faith and do great things for Christ without going through some rough and struggling times, forget it. Even Jesus, though he was the Son of God went through serious ‘sufferation.’ As Hebrews so plainly puts it: ‘Though he were a Son, yet  learned he obedience by the things which he suffered. And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.’ (Heb. 5:8-9) Yes my people, we can only learn obedience by going through things that challenge our sinful fleshly nature. 

And remember that Jesus though God, was also fully man, so His man side had to learn by going through tough times. And that’s why now, since He knows and has experienced the same things we experience, He is fit and capable to sit beside the Father’s throne and advocate on our behalf. Yes, living a life for Jesus is not easy, but following His obedient example and with His strength and power, we can become good and solid Christians and make this evil world a better place! Much LOVE!

…only a few of us will suffer like Jesus…but ALL of us will suffer some…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 January 2020 John 15:5.

John 15:5.    ​I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
 

And yes, I know some of you are patting your chests, feeling self-satisfied and proud as a peacock, because you have now darkened the church doors on your usual two occasions for the year; at Easter and Christmas. And I still don’t understand why you go at all because twice a year is certainly insufficient if you consider yourself a true believer in Jesus Christ! Church ought not to be a sometime thing. The Lord planned it to be a regular occurrence, and if you think twice a year is sufficient, then you are totally fooling yourself and seriously suffering from the sin of pride, which the Lord abhors more than most others. 

Church was made for fellowship, so believers could gather together and enjoy each other’s company, encourage each other, sing and praise the Lord and hear His enlightened Word, thus refreshing and renewing our tired minds, bodies and spirits from a stressful week of work, so that we can begin the cycle all over again on Monday. Anyway, mine is not to judge, just to point out the inadequacies. (smile) So let’s get the show on the road with today’s song of praise. And since we’ve all resolved to have a closer walk with Jesus this new year of 2020, I figured the most appropriate song would be the old faithful: ‘Just a closer walk with thee.’ 

But before we get into it, here is something from the website Hymnary.org, which gives us food for thought as we sing. ‘In this song, we acknowledge our human inability to live righteously, but we also express awareness of the grace and strength that God gives us in our daily walk. Even such an esteemed saint as the apostle Paul acknowledged his need for this grace: “But he [God] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” … For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9a, 10b ESV).’ 

So as we sing, as we raise our voices to high heaven in perfect harmony and true sincerity, let’s contemplate the sentiments we utter in that light nuh. All together now: ‘I am weak but Thou art strong; Jesus, keep me from all wrong; I’ll be satisfied as long As I walk, let me walk close to Thee. (Refrain: Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it, Jesus, is my plea, Daily walking close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.) Thro’ this world of toil and snares, If I falter, Lord, who cares? Who with me my burden shares? None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee. [Refrain] 

(And Anne Murray inserts this chorus here: ‘Take my hand Lord Jesus, take my hand. Take my hand Lord Jesus, take my hand. There’s a race to be run, there’s a victory to be won, every hour, give me power to go through.) When my feeble life is o’er, Time for me will be no more; Guide me gently, safely o’er To Thy kingdom shore, to Thy shore. [Refrain] (Take my hand Lord Jesus, take my hand. Take my hand Lord Jesus, take my hand. There’s a race to be run, there’s a victory to be won, every hour, give me power to go through.) Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it, Jesus, is my plea, Daily walking close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be. Just a closer walk with thee, Dear Lord let be…let it be…’ 

Ah mih people, the only way to walk this earth successfully is to be continually in close proximity to Jesus; the One who bore all our sins on Calvary’s cross, then rose triumphantly from the dead and ascended into heaven where He sits at the Father’s right hand advocating on our behalf. Glory Hallelujah! And if you don’t believe me, then hear it from Jesus Himself: ‘Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:4-5) 

Now if that isn’t telling it in plain and straightforward language, I don’t know what is nuh! Yes friends, if we don’t stay tightly attached to Jesus then we’ll be lost like sheep without a shepherd, headed straight for naïve and innocent slaughter by falling for the enemy’s lies and deceit. That’s the gospel truth! Jesus is the ONLY ONE who can provide us with the strength and the wherewithal we need to make it through these dark, dismal and turbulent times! 

And Bruh Paul puts it thus to the Corinthians in the last chapter of his second letter, when he speaks of his coming to them and warns of prevalent sin in their church: ‘For though he (Jesus) was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you. Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates (unless you don’t stand the test, are counterfeit Christians)?’ (2 Cor.13:4-5) 

Ah mih people, in this new year, these trying times of history, it’s ever so necessary for each and every one of us to examine ourselves and make sure we’re not fakes, counterfeit believers! If we’re true believers, then Christ ought to be in us. And if Christ is in us, then we have the awesome responsibility to act and behave in a manner that is worthy of Him. That means bearing the fruit of the Spirit: LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), meekness, temperance (self-control). 

Today, let’s take a few moments and examine ourselves to see if we are bearers of such fruit nuh. And whether we are or not, let’s sincerely ask the Lord to help us bear such fruit so that we can exalt and glorify His most worthy name through His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Much LOVE!

…not that we are sufficient of our selves…to think any thing as of ourselves…but our sufficiency…is of God… (2 Cor.3:5)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 December 2019 Proverbs 13:17.

Proverbs 13:17.    ​A wicked messenger falleth into mischief (trouble): but a faithful ambassador is (brings) health.
 
Well I hope we all had a good and pleasant weekend, filled with God’s mercy and compassion, and were not too traumatized by the inclement weather a lot of us had to undergo. (smile) But be that as it may, today’s that great day we call Monday, where we get our acts together and get out and face the music! So what we waiting for eh? Let’s do it nuh! Yeh, I know, there will always be some laggards, some of us who are just not up to it, for whatever reason. But don’t despair because we have you covered. 

Our great God has taken all possibilities into consideration and has designed this one specially for our Monday morning ills. It’s titled our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, because it gets us fighting ready for battle with the devious and deceitful enemy. So as one pleading, but humbly hopeful and expectant voice, let’s take our problem to the halls of heaven nuh, where our Advocate, Jesus Christ, is there waiting to take our case to the Father. 

‘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 with a wonderful Advocate like Christ on the case, what else can we expect but VICTORY! Yes friends, almost immediately, we all feel the renewing of our spirits and the overwhelming enthusiasm filling our souls through the miraculous working of God’s Holy Spirit! And now we’re just bursting with a flaming desire and seemingly inexhaustible energy to get out into the evil world and knock some sense into some foolish heads on Christ’s behalf! 

But the truth of the matter is that Jesus doesn’t really want us to physically knock sense into the heads of those who refuse to accept Him as their Lord and Saviour, but rather to teach them, by the quality of our lives, our own LOVE, care and compassion for them in this rough and tumble world. For remember, as the man said so long ago, (smile) … Oh brother, now I can’t remember the rather appropriate quote from the 18th century novel, ‘Joseph Andrews’ by Henry Fielding. Steups!  But in today’s parlance it boils down to something like actions speak louder than words. And indeed they do. 

Thank God for computers yes, they do serve some useful purposes sometimes! (smile) I got the bright idea to google the book and author’s name, and lo and behold, much to my surprise, there it was; the whole book. But all I needed was the first line of the first page: ‘It is a trite but true observation, that examples work more forcibly on the mind than precepts: and if this be just in what is odious and blameable, it is more strongly so in what is amiable and praiseworthy.’ Wow! It’s amazing how that passage has stuck with me, having read it fifty something years ago in High School. 

That means our lives, as living examples for Christ, will touch others much more than what we say to them. It’s like people will forget what we say, but not how we treat them. That’s why Jesus encourages us to be good salt and bright lights in the world, leading exemplary lives. Note, not perfect ones, but as close as we can get. Remember we’re supposed to be ambassadors for Christ, His earthly  messengers, and in the wise words of Cousin Sol: ‘A wicked messenger falleth into mischief (trouble): but a faithful ambassador is (brings) health’ 

That’s why in this world ambassadors are carefully chosen and have to know a fair amount of the culture and laws and mores of the places where they are sent, so they don’t bring shame and disgrace or trouble to their country or government. Likewise friends, we can only be good ambassadors for Christ if we read and study and inculcate His Word, so that we know what to do and how to live in this evil world, so that we don’t bring disgrace to His name and His kingdom. For as Cousin Sol also says: ‘For as the cold of snow in the time of harvest, so is a faithful messenger to them that send him: for he refresheth the soul of his masters.’ (Prov.25:13) 

Are we refreshing Christ’s soul with our earthly lives friends? No wonder Bruh Paul told the Corinthians: ‘Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray (implore) you in Christ’s stead (on Christ’s behalf), be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him’ (2 Cor. 5:20-21) Yes my people, it’s all for Christ’s sake! How can we not settle down and be good ambassadors for Him eh, after the Lord put our sins on Him, and His righteousness on us? 

So this Monday morning, as we’re in the process of celebrating Christ’s birth, please, I implore us, let’s take a serious look at our ambassadorship in His name and with God’s help try to make it better. We can all come up higher for Christ, that’s a fact! Much LOVE!

…for what Christ has done for us…a worthy ambassadorship is…the best gratitude we can show…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 November 2019…Psalm 3:3.

Psalm 3:3.    ​But thou, O Lord, art a shield for (around) me; my glory, and the lifter up of (the one who lifts up) mine head.
 

Top o’ the day my Scrip-Bit friends and family! Sorry, but it looks like another wet and cloudy day in my area. Chuh! That’s three in a row! But what to do eh? Not much but grin and bear it and open our hearts, minds, bodies and souls even more to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, because He is the One who can help us do all things through His amazing strength and goodness, mercy, grace and compassion! Glory be mih people! How blessed we are to have such a wonderful Leader, Guide and Enabler! 

And all God’s people declared in a loud and grateful voice: ‘Bless His holy name! Bless the Lamb that was slain for us; our High Priest and Advocate at the Father’s right hand, who understands our problems because He faced them too, but yet did not sin. Consequently, the only one found worthy to open the seven seals!’ Yes friends, whatever we need, we can find it in Jesus…our EVERYTHING! 

And as Bruh David so rightly declared long ago in Psalm 3 – his prayer of confidence in God: ‘Many there be which say of my soul, There is no help for him in God.    Selah.  But thou, O Lord, art a shield for (around) me; my glory, and the lifter up of (the one who lifts up) mine head.’ (Ps. 3:2-3) Ah mih breddren, today the infidel is still doubting the power and LOVE of our great God, but ever so wisely, we are still rocking and rolling in His utmost faithfulness and tender mercies for those who come sincerely seeking Him! 

Bruh David in his day had numerous problems and enemies, but he was able to confront them all because of his amazing trust in the God of his forefathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. And regardless of why he was crying out to God, he always made sure to declare his ultimate trust in God. For example, in Psalm 28 – a prayer for God’s help, he confidently proclaims: ‘The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.’ (Ps.28:7) 

And I’m sadly chuckling here, because in these troubled and perilous times, I don’t think many of us take the time to acknowledge God’s power and majesty when we cry out to Him for help, we just want His help immediately. But the Lord likes it when, even in rough times, we take a moment to sincerely acknowledge His might and power, because then we truly show our trust in His everlasting faithfulness and LOVE, we’re not just out to get our wants satisfied. Remember, the true motives of our hearts are more important to God, than our outward actions. 

Now hear the kind of absolute declaration we can make when that absolute trust in our God permeates our entire being: ‘I cried unto the Lord with my voice, and he heard me out of his holy hill (mountain).   Selah. I laid me down and slept; I awaked; for the Lord sustained me. I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people, that have set themselves against me round about.’ (Ps.3:4-6) Oh my fellow believers, if we put our whole faith and trust in the Lord God of Israel, it’s the same way He will sustain us when we cry out to Him, because that’s His faithful promise. 

As I keep saying, despite all Bruh David’s faults and foibles, he knew on which side his bread was buttered, and the Lord certainly rewarded him for that sincere trust. And He will do the same for us if we come to Him in all sincerity? But unfortunately, too many of us supposed believers don’t put our whole and absolute faith and trust in Christ Jesus, we still try to do too much in our own strength, that’s why our lives are not as steady and forthright as they ought to be. And yes, I know that putting our last ounce of faith in Christ can sometimes be difficult, but that’s what faith is all about, and you won’t grow or learn until you step out of your comfort zone and take a radical step towards Him. 

Oh, believe me, I can only spout this stuff because I’ve learned from personal experience, and hard personal experience too…and I’m still learning…from hard experience, because it’s a process. God is working a work of faith and trust in us, so that hopefully, everyday we can become more like His Son. That’s the long term plan. And remember His Son did not have it easy here on earth, so we should not complain if we occasionally have it rough. 

Thus, we need to believe like Bruh David prayed: ‘But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that LOVE thy name be joyful in thee. For thou, Lord, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass (surround) him as with a shield.’ (Ps.5:11-12) Ah friends, what a great God we serve and worship, but we can’t get ALL the benefits available unless we invest ALL the trust! It’s as simple as that. 

Now for those of us who are sincerely trying to do that, let’s go home declaring (steups!) our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our solid and uncompromising position in Christ. As one sincere voice: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And if you stand steadfast and true, that future will be even more glorious than you can ever imagine! Much LOVE!

…it’s all about…trust…surrender…and belief…in Christ Jesus…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 November 2019 Hebrews 4:16.

Hebrews 4:16.    ​Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

Time to refuel once again friends; time to revitalize our spiritual energy with a visit to the Lord’s house this Sunday morning, or evening, where in fellowship with other believers, we give thanks and praise to our heavenly Father, hear His awesome Word, filled with wisdom and encouragement and come away strong and confident, empowered to face our turbulent world for another seven days, diligently doing His holy will! Hn, hn! I like that sentence; though it’s long, it’s chocked full of truth! And as believers in Jesus Christ, that ought to be a major priority in our lives. As Bruh David says in Psalm 25: ‘All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth unto such as keep his covenant and his testimonies.’ (Ps.25:10) If you are a true believer, you certainly can’t deny that. 

Anyway, let’s get on with the praise and worship, beginning, as always, with a song of heartfelt LOVE being floated up to heaven. And today’s song is an old favourite, ‘How sweet the name of Jesus sounds,’ written by none other than John Newton (1725-1807); the licentious sailor, slave trader, abolitionist and priest, who contributed numerous songs to our Hymn Book, the most famous being the immortal, ‘Amazing Grace.’ So let’s sing out our souls in all sincerity to Jesus, letting Him know how much we LOVE, adore and appreciate Him. 

As one voice, in perfect harmony: ‘How sweet the name of Jesus sounds in a believer’s ear! It soothes our sorrows, heals our wounds, and drives away our fear. It makes the wounded spirit whole and calms the troubled breast; ’tis manna to the hungry soul, and to the weary, rest. Dear name! the rock on which I build, My shield and hiding place, My never-failing treasury, filled, With boundless stores of grace. O Jesus, shepherd, guardian, friend, my Prophet, Priest, and King, my Lord, my Life, my Way, my End, accept the praise I bring. How weak the effort of my heart, how cold my warmest thought; but when I see you as you are, I’ll praise you as I ought. Till then I would your LOVE proclaim with every fleeting breath; and may the music of your name refresh my soul in death.’ 

Ah friends, there’s really no sweeter sound to a believer’s ear than that magical, mysterious, powerful and all-encompassing name of Jesus! Give Him much heartfelt thanks and praise for all He’s done for us miserable, sinful human beings nuh. I guess because of Newton’s ungodly early life, he was able to hit the nail on the head when writing this hymn. Most likely Jesus did it all for him; soothed his sorrows, healed his wounds, drove away his fear. I’m sure He made whole his wounded spirit and calmed his troubled breast…and undoubtedly, He was manna to his hungry soul, and in his weariness, gave him peaceful rest. And yuh know what my people, Jesus will do the same for each and everyone of us, if we will just accept Him into our hearts and be obedient to His will. 

Listen to some of the awesome, but oh so truthful statements that Jesus made in His time here on earth. ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but my me.’ (John 14:6) Right there the situation is explained in living colour: only through Jesus, by believing in Him, and living a lifestyle in concert with His, will we ever get to see the Father’s face and behold His immaculate glory! Then hear Him on the shepherd scene: ‘I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knoweth me, even so I know the Father, and I lay down my life for the sheep.’ (John 10:14-15) And did He ever lay down His sinless life in a most sacrificial manner for us, the sinful and willful sheep of His pasture! 

And as for obedience, hear Him: ‘A new commandment I give to you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:34-35) He also emphasized the LOVE factor later on in talking about the Holy Spirit. ‘If you LOVE me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever.’ (John 14:15-16)  And He kept His promise, that’s why we have the Holy Spirit indwelling each and every believer today! 

And there’s nothing in this whole wide world like 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 unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt. 11:28-30) Coming obediently to Jesus is wisest way to find rest friends! I can certainly vouch for that, and so too can many of you. 

And if you want more, He is also the King of Kings and Lord of Lords (1 Tim. 6:15); the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last (Rev.1:8); The name above every name, to which every knee will bow, and every tongue confess that He is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Phil. 2:9-11) He is also our Advocate, our lawyer in heaven. ‘And if any man sin, we have an advocate (intercessor) with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous’ (1 John 2:1b) Glory be mih breddren! 

And finally, Jesus is also our High Priest: ‘Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God’ let us hold fast our profession (confession) For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (sympathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’  (Heb. 4:14-16) That’s the best advice to end with today friends! Please pay significant heed to it. Much LOVE!

…Jesus is our Be All…and our End All…our Everything in ONE…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 August 2019 1 John 4:4.

1 John 4:4.   Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them (the spirit of the antichrist): because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
 

Awright people, let’s go get ‘em this Monday morning nuh! Yes it is Monday, and the battle lines are already drawn! Satan is already working against you as sit on the side of the bed contemplating what to do; to call in sick, or force yourself to get up, do the three esses, get dressed, then face the awful traffic jam involved in getting to a job you totally detest. And in the midst of all that, you’re wondering how Monday has come around again so quickly? I’m sorry, but I can’t help you there nuh, because I’m wondering the same thing too. (smile) 

But I can help you to drive the enemy away and consequently change your thinking and attitude towards the whole scenario. And we do that through prayer, our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, which we put forth as the antidote for whatever ails you on a Monday morning. (smile) But believe me, it  works! So let’s try it nuh. All together, as one voice, in sincerity of hearts and minds. 

‘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!’ 

Yeah friends! Yuh feel the Holy Spirit moving ahready nuh! Yuh see how yuh spring up from the bed, full of vim and vigour, when just a minute ago yuh didn’t have the energy to even lift a finger! And now yuh enthusiastic as ever to get out there and do battle with ole Beelzebub himself! That’s what yuh call the power of the Holy Spirit! When it moves, it moves like a magnet, separating the sheep from the goats, the men from the boys, and God’s saints from Lucifer’s evil minions! 

Wow! So why wouldn’t you want that positive, powerful, vibrant life-force moving within you, and guiding your footsteps through this evil world eh, rather than the debilitating, negative, evil spirit that belongs to Satan? If you are wise, you will follow it, because it indwells every believer. And please remember Jesus’ words to the disciples when He promised them the Holy Spirit. ‘If ye LOVE me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he will give you another Comforter (Helper, Advocate), that he may abide with you for ever.’ (John 14:15-16) 

And the scholars explain: ‘14:16. Another (Gr. allon) stresses that the Holy Spirit would be “another” like Jesus. A Comforter (Gr. Paraclete) is an advocate called alongside for aid in time of trouble. See the same word in 1 John 2:1, “Advocate.” And Jesus continued: ‘Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless (orphans): I will come to you.’ (John 14:17-18) 

Yuh see friends, the world didn’t even know the Holy Spirit back then, and it still doesn’t! But we believers do, because as of Pentecost Sunday the Holy Spirit began dwelling in believers as Jesus promised: ‘But ye shall receive power, after that (when) the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.’ (Acts 1:8) 

And yuh see how the Holy Ghost come and mash up the place, create havoc on Pentecost Sunday: It showed up ‘like a mighty rushing wind from heaven and filled the house where they were sitting… appearing unto them (the disciples) like cloven (divided) tongues of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:3-4) That’s the amazing power of the workhorse of the Holy Trinity! 

But it can also work silently and subtlety, as Jesus indicated when He first promised it to His followers. ‘But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.’ (John 14:26) Ah mih people, that Holy Spirit is usually a silent worker these days; it talks to us from within, and we ought to pay serious and strict attention to what it says, because it is there to lead us along paths of righteousness and godliness. 

But here is one fact that we should always keep uppermost in our minds. John puts it nicely in his first epistle. ‘Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them (the spirit of the antichrist): because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.’ Mamma Mia! What a wonderful and encouraging statement of fact my faithful brethren! 

The scholars explain it thus: ‘4:4. Christ indwells believers; Satan is likewise the Lord of his own followers. But Christ is GREATER than he who wreaks havoc in the world. Have overcome is in the perfect tense, stressing the abiding nature of their victory. Their strength lies in the fact that they are (born) of God.’ 

Oh my people, please remember that all of that also applies to us, because we are also born of God, and Jesus has also provided us with the abiding victory over Satan, hell, death and the grave, our job now is to simply keep that victory going strong! Much LOVE!

…true believers…wisely use the Holy Spirit…to guide them aright…in this evil world…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 May 2019 Matthew 10:28.

Matthew 10:28.   ​And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
 
Aha! It’s Wednesday – the middle of the week already, and we’ve only worked one day so far! Glory to God! Ah mih people, what a holiday on the first day of the week can do for us eh! But on the other hand, many of us are still tired from all the Victoria Day celebrations and are just dying for Friday to come! So reflective of our desire to eat our cake and still have it! (smile) 

Anyway, if Jesus is truly in your heart, then you will be able to do whatever you need to do with diligence and excellence, because He empowers His followers through His Holy Spirit that dwells within them. And as He faithfully promised, will supply all of their needs through His riches in glory! Give Him some thanks and praise for that wonderful promise my people! 

Our Jesus is the BEST! Not only did He sacrifice His life on the cross at Calvary for us, but He’s still advocating, pleading our cases for us before the Father in heaven! Wow! How tireless a worker is He on our behalf! That’s why we need NO ONE but Him! He’s our EVERYTHING; our BE ALL and END ALL! 

And with Him constantly riding shotgun with us, or as the Good Book says, ‘If God be for us, who can be against us eh?’ NOBODY! Because Jesus and us are a majority in EVERY situation! Mama Mia! Is that ever reassuring! It certainly is! 

And I want to stir up the applecart here a bit, with this quote from Joshua Loth Liebman (1907 – 1948), the famous American Rabbi, who penned the Best Seller, ‘Peace of Mind.’ And Liebman is reputed to have said these stirring words: ‘Stripped of all their masquerades, the fears of men are quite identical: the fear of loneliness, rejection, inferiority, unmanageable anger, illness and death.’ 

And is that ever so true friends! Be we rich or poor, powerful or lowly, we ALL experience those fears at some stage in our lives. They are just common to all mankind because of the frailties and weaknesses of our human nature! Yes, we have been given dominion over the earth, but that does not make us God! 

When God decided to give us free will to rule over the earth, He realized that He must retain some kind of control, otherwise we’d all run amok, drunk with such power. So He made it that NONE of us was able to be self-sufficient in all matters. At some stage in life, we all would need to come to Him, our Creator, for help! 

And he who was proud and haughty and arrogant enough to believe he could do it all on his own, then He would be lost in eternal hellfire and damnation, separated from His Creator forever!  What a sad and sorry state of affairs! All because of foolish pride! 

Yes friends, we all have fears, fears which cause numerous problems, sometimes even irreparable problems in our lives. But they don’t have to prevent us from doing our bounden duty, from reaching our God-given destiny. That’s because our great God wants us to call out to Him for help! That’s why He made us frail and incomplete! 

And He’s just there, dying for us to come to Him, waiting with opened arms for His creation to come to Him and sincerely declare: ‘Oh my heavenly father, I need your help!’ That’s all it takes my people! And if you don’t believe me, then hear some words of our Lord, Saviour, and Advocate, Jesus, while He lived here on earth. 

Listen as He advises us to first seek the kingdom of God. ‘Fear not little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’ (Luke 12:32) And to the disciples, re the workers of iniquity: ‘Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered (veiled), that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known. 

What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops. And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.’ (Matt.10:26-28) 

Yes friends, mankind might be able to kill our physical bodies, but not our souls, and will therefore not prevent our ‘blessed resurrection to life everlasting.’ The only person who can do both is Almighty God! That’s why it’s more important to fear our Creator, not only in reverence, but also in true fear, for He is the ONLY ONE who has the authority to cast men into hell, and not the evil one, who will himself be eventually cast into eternal hellfire. 

And after that Jesus tells them: ‘Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? And one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered, Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows. Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.10:29-33) 

Oh my faithful brethren, from those verses we learn two things: (1) Our heavenly Father cares for all of His creation, even the lowly sparrows, but He cares for us a whole lot more; His greatest creation. So much so that even the hairs on our heads are numbered. As the scholars say: ‘Here we are reminded of God’s gracious providential care over His saints.’ 

(2) To be an eligible disciple of Christ, we need to publicly confess Him before men! As the scholars explain: ‘In reality, secret discipleship is a practical impossibility. Jesus constantly called for an open confession of Himself by His followers. That our confession is to be before men clearly indicates that a public confession of true Christian faith is a virtual necessity.’ 

So let’s be wise and be of strong faith nuh, so that our fears, legitimate though they may be, don’t prevent us from publicly acknowledging Christ and doing His work in a diligent and excellent manner. And with all of that good stuff written indelibly in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls, let’s go home now declaring (yes!) to the world our position in Christ as set out in our Wednesday Wail. 

As one proud and sincere voice 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 as I like to remind us, that future will be even more glorious than our puny minds can even imagine! (smile) Much LOVE!

…in our free society…one can’t truly live for Jesus…in secret…

 

 

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