Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 January 2021 Romans 8:31.

Romans 8:31.     ​What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

Oh chuh friends! Late risings and early morning chores certainly inhibit the doing of the Lord’s work yes! (smile) But what to do eh, better late than never on this snowy Tuesday morning. 

We can’t complain because we have not seen any real precipitation of any kind for a while now, so the white that’s beginning to cover the ground is a nice change from the dark, damp days we’ve recently been having, except for the few cold and sunny ones last week. 

Hope you can figure that one out. (smile) And thank the Lord I don’t have to go out in it! But whatever we have, nice or not, we still give our wonderful God much thanks because we know He’s promised to work everything out, both good and bad for our benefit if we keep LOVING, trusting and being faithful and obedient to Him! Glory to His precious name my brethren! 

And if you don’t believe me, then listen to this mighty piece of scripture that details it all. ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.’ (Rom. 8:28) 

And according to the scholars’ explanation. ‘8:28. To them that LOVE God is the human perspective. God is working all things together for good, but those who LOVE God are best able to appreciate that fact because they LOVE Him no matter what (cf. Job 13:15). To them who are the called is the divine perspective. Scripture often refers to believers as “the called” or “the elect.” 

But we just got started with the whole contextual thing: ‘For whom He did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the first-born among many brethren.’ (Rom. 8:29) Yes friends, this foreknowing is a strong sense of knowing and being known, not merely an acquaintance kind of knowing! (smile) 

And the scholars tell us: ‘8:29. Foreknowledge is God’s determination from eternity to bring certain ones into a special relationship with Himself (see also 11:2). Predestinate: See Ephesians 1:5. (To mark off or choose before. God chooses those He knows will participate in His plan of salvation and extends it to all who respond in faith). 

To be conformed to the image of his Son: The goal of predestination is not to send some to hell and some to heaven, but is the believer’s glorification, to make every Christian increasingly more like His Son.’ 

Glory be mih people! As Bruh Paul said to the Corinthians: ‘But we all, with open (unveiled) face beholding as in a glass (mirror) the glory of the Lord, are changed (being transformed) into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.’

Oh fellow saints of God, unlike Moses’ who had to put a veil over his face when the Lord’s glory shone through Him (2 Cor. 3:13) but which glory eventually faded, ‘under the New Covenant the believer is changed into the same image. This transformation takes place by the abiding presence of the Spirit of God.’ That means it’s a gradual process, so we have to keep on trusting and being faithful right to the very end. 

But getting back to our original topic, Bruh Paul declares (yeah!) ‘Moreover, whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.’ (Rom. 8:30)Wow! What wonderful news! ‘Predestinated, called, justified, glorified!’ Brother only our wonderful God can make those things happen! 

As the scholars explain: ‘8:30. Called: The calling of 8:28 is pretemporal; it occurred before the creation of the world (Eph. 1:4). The calling here is temporal and refers to the effectual communication of the gospel, resulting in salvation. Justified: See 3:24. (And that says being justified means being declared righteous, signifies the believer’s judicial standing before God). 

Glorified: Glorification is God’s doing. While God’s foreknowledge and predestination take place in eternity, and while God’s calling and justification are realized in history, God’s glorifying is yet future. It is as certain, however, as the previous works. Hence glorified is in the past tense. From God’s point of view it is already accomplished.’ 

Oh Mama, Mama! How great is our God eh? What assurance we have, that although something, our glorifying, is not done yet, He talks of it in past tense, as though it has already been done! So how can we not LOVE and obey and trust and surrender our ALL to Him eh? I just can’t understand it. 

Consequently, as Bruh Paul continues: ‘What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?’ (Rom. 8:31) And the loud and clear answer to that my precious people of God is ‘NOBODY! NOT A SINGLE SOUL!’ And you ask a doubting why? 

Bruh Paul also gives us the answer. ‘He that 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. 8:32) Yes people, that makes mucho sense! If God gave up His sinless Son to save sinners, why would He then refuse to help us in time of need eh? No reason whatsoever! 

No wonder, Job in all his adversity could calmly and stoically proclaim: ‘Though he slay me, yet will I trust him: but I will maintain (defend) mine own ways before him. He also shall be my salvation: for a hypocrite shall not come before him. Hear diligently my speech, and my declaration with your ears.’ (Job 13:15-17) 

Powerful words of faith friends! But are we able to proclaim such words ourselves? Now that’s the ultimate question. But if we consider ourselves true and faithful believers, we should be able to declare (yesss!) them without a pause or doubt in our minds and speech. 

So let’s consider all that we’ve said today nuh…I know it’s plenty, but at this stage of our spiritual journey we should be eating meat and spuds, not still drinking milk, (smile) and thus be able to digest more scriptural technicalities and meanings than when we first came to Christ. 

Anyway, it’s all in the reading and learning and doing and persevering that we mature, and are raised from glory to glory; a lifelong process. So if you don’t get it all now, just keep on keeping on and eventually you will get it. That’s the Lord’s promise! 

And for those of us who are sincerely trying to keep on keeping on, let’s go home now declaring (oh yes! – three times I got it right today, on the first try) (big grin) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know WHO and WHOSE we are. 

In strong voice, 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!’ 

And it follows that our task is to now go out and share Christ’s LOVE and friendship with others, as He so greatly desires! Much LOVE!

…to know, know, know Him…is to LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Him….no doubt about it…

P.S. Yes, it’s long and late…but sweet! (smile) Much LOVE!

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 January 2021 John 8:12.

John 8:12.     I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

Once again it is time to come together my brethren to celebrate the Lord’s Day, as we’ve been instructed to do. So please gather round your technological devices and let’s have virtual church since physical church has been shut down due to the Corona virus pandemic, with many strains now proliferating in our world. But widespread as it is, the virus will not stop us from praising God and giving Him much thanks on a Sunday morning. 

And, as we are wont to do every Sunday, let’s begin with a song of praise and thanksgiving, one of my recent real, real favourites. It’s the Denise Plummer rework of her earlier soca chutney hit ‘Na Leaving,’ done up in gospel language, and now titled ‘Ah Cyar Leave Him.’ which is the gospel truth mih people. And I remember the first time I heard this reworking of one of my favourite soca songs, both lyrics and music, I almost went crazy. (smile) Yeh friends, music has the habit of doing that to me. 

Anyway, enough talk – no wonder they say I talk too much. Let’s get to the singing. And remember, is a nice, easy rocking chutney soca riddim, a mixture of African and East Indian music, but with plenty feeling and movement. So after the first few bars, with the Indian tassa drum pounding in the background, we shout out: ‘Jesus…Yahweh…Yeshua… Jahovah! From revelry to righteousness…Cyar leave Him. From hell-bound to holiness…Cyar leave Him. From sin to salvation…Cyar leave him. A kingdom destination…Cyar leave Him. 

There I was, in my glee, wallowing deep in a pig pen, full of life, but so empty, on my way to a fiery end. But someone told me about a Saviour, who said He LOVES me and He cares. In times of storm He is my shelter, so in His arms you’ll find me there. Yuh see ah cyar live life without Him, He is my King of Kings, He’s the reason I’m still living. Ah cyar leave Him…ah cyar leave Him. Never condemn or forsaken me dread…Ah cyar leave Him…ah cyar leave Him. For God man I living, For God I go dead. 

There are so few, who made it through, and come from the darkness of this world. But I saw the light, I found the truth. I have more than silver, more than gold. I gave my life over to Jesus, the greatest decision I’ve made. Boy I recommend you try Him, Jesus is the best upgrade. He came to earth and died on the cross, rose up just like a boss, when yuh see me smiling, He’s the cause. Ah cyar leave Him…ah cyar leave Him. Never condemn or forsaken me dread…Ah cyar leave Him…ah cyar leave Him. For God man I living, For God I go dead. 

I am under the rock. The rock is higher than I. Jahovah hides me. I am under the rock. Go tell my enemies, that I am under the rock. Jahovah hides me, I am under the rock. I am under the rock. The rock is higher than I. Jahovah hides me. I am under the rock. Go tell my enemies, that I am under the rock. Jahovah hides me, I am under the rock. From revelry to righteousness…Cyar leave Him. From hell-bound to holiness…Cyar leave Him. From sin to salvation…Cyar leave him. A kingdom destination…Cyar leave Him. Jesus…Yahweh…Yeshua… Jahovah! (And we shout again) Jesus…Yahweh…Yeshua… Jahovah!’ 

Oh mih people, mih people, ah see yuh moving with plenty energy as the music touch yuh soul, and the lyrics ring out with indisputable truth and touch yuh heart! The same thing was happening in heaven too mih bredrin! And that’s how it ought to be, because our Jesus is everything that the song says…and more too! 

Just look at how coming to know Him does change us nuh: From worldly revelry, we turn to righteousness; from heading straight for hell, we get holy, and doh talk about how He wash away we sins through His death and resurrection and give us salvation, destined for heaven! Glory be! Yeh, Jesus rose up strong and vibrant, just like the awesome Boss He is! Brother, how yuh go beat that eh? NO WAY Jose! He is indeed our King of Kings, as well as Lord of Lords; the highest name in the universe, right after that of the Father, to which all knees will someday bow and proclaim Him Lord of all, with much glory to the Father. 

And yes friends, when we wallowing deep in our pig pen of misery, looking hell and Satan straight in the face, is ONLY Jesus who has the ability to pull us out from that dreadful mire. That’s because He’s a Saviour, He gives us a reason for living, takes us out of the darkness of this world and shows us the light, the bright, shining light that He is. That’s why He could proclaim in all truth: ‘I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.’ (John 8:12) 

And once you put your hand in His hand, and your trust in His promises, then your eyes are opened to the sinful reality of this world, and you never want to go back to the dark state you were previously in. Oh bless His holy name my people for He is indeed our EVERYTHING! 

And to verify, to corroborate all of that, remember this other proclamation: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.’ (John 14: 6) That means mih bredrin that Jesus is the way, the truth, the life and the light! So when you come to Him, you find all of that! Oh Bubba! What else can we ask of Him eh? NOTHING! Who else can truthfully make those claims eh? NOBODY! 

But yuh know what precious people, our Jesus is even plenty more than that. He’s our shelter in the time of storm. Hear how Isaiah puts it nuh: ‘ For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible (ruthless) ones is as a storm against a wall.’ (Is. 25:4) How can you beat that eh friends? You can’t! 

And then He never condemns us, just shows us the error of our ways, and has also promised never to leave or forsake us. (Heb. 13:5) And furthermore, when our enemies looking for us, Jesus going to hide us, for He is our Rock, our fortress, our strong refuge! Yuh see how He hide Bruh David although Saul was all out to get Him? Friends that’s the same thing He will do for all those who believe and trust in Him. And yuh see what He says about our enemies? They shall come against us one way, but flee seven different ways. (Deut. 28:7) 

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, there’s a lot more we can say about our Lord and Saviour, but we don’t have time nor space. Suffice it to say, He is the biggest difference maker our world has ever seen, and once we surrender our lives to Him, such an amazing, mind boggling transformation comes over us, that it’s just becomes impossible for us to leave Him after that. Such is the LOVE, compassion, inspiration, assurance and comfort that He provides, that’s why we’re willing to both live and die for Him. And the only appropriate thing for us to do now, is to go home singing ‘Ah Cyar Leave Him…Ah Cyar Leave Him…No ah just cyar leave Him…’ Much LOVE!

…remember…Jesus is the Rock…His work is perfect… a God of truth…just and right is He… (Deut. 32:4)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 October 2020 John 8:12.

John 8:12.     ​I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

Another wet and dreary day seems to be in the offing. But yuh know, unlike what the Carpenters said in their hit song way back in 1971, it’s not only rainy days and Mondays that get me down, but rainy days period. (smile) It’s just that rainy days seem to have this inherent touch of melancholia in them; just like sunshiny days have a built-in sense of upliftment. You see the sun and spirits automatically lift despite your circumstances. Likewise, you experience the wet and dreary looking weather and your spirits tend to fall somewhat, the attitude of relaxation and laziness also seem to pop up. (smile) You have to actively lift them up again. 

And so it is with this Tuesday morning, after a rather melancholy Monday. But yuh know friends, when you have Jesus as your Guiding Light, the kind of physical day doesn’t really matter, because He Himself is such a wonderful ray of sunshine that just thinking of Him and talking to him automatically lifts you up! Glory to God my people! Jesus Himself revealed His awesome Light. ‘I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.’ (John 8:12) 

But unfortunately, the Pharisees disputed His authority because He witnessed to Himself, which to them, invalidated His claim. That however did not change anything, all it meant was that the Pharisees would remain on the outside looking in; stubborn, like the head-butting goats they were. (smile) As Jesus’ reply indicated. ‘Though I bear record (witness) of myself, yet my record (witness) is true: for I know whence I came, and whither I go; but ye cannot tell whence I come, and whither I go.’ (John 8:14) 

Now here is an interesting explanation on Jesus being the light of the world from the www.biblestudytools.com website. ‘Jesus saying He is the Light of the world is the outer recognition of His Father’s creation and presence, and the inward dwelling of the Holy Spirit, by which we know our Father and walk with Jesus. Jesus is the Light of the world, our world, and in the world. Like God is omnipresent, so Jesus is Light.’ Ah friends, what a wonderful depiction of Jesus; His light just shining everywhere, being the ever-present reality, our invaluable and unbreakable connection to the Father! 

And it’s obvious that the Pharisees, supposedly the most learned scriptural group back then, didn’t know or understand the true meaning of the scriptures, or were simply being egotistical and guarding their earthly power, for Isaiah said it loud and clear. ‘The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.’ (Is. 9:2) 

The prophet Malachi also told us about the bright Light that would come. ‘But unto you that fear my name shall the SUN of righteousness will arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall (grow fat like stall fed calves).’ (Mal. 4:2) 

Now if the Pharisees were so wise or knowledgeable of the scriptures, they would have put two and two together and come up with four and not three, especially since Jesus was healing people like crazy, something they’d never seen before. Or, possibly, as I said earlier, they did come up with four, but were wary of losing their upper crust position if they acknowledged Jesus for whom He really was. 

One stumbling block for the whole Jewish society though, seemed to be the thinking that the Messiah would be this great warrior king who would come and through war-like means, free them from the Roman atrocities, not a gentle, meek, peaceful Rabbi with LOVE as the basis of His testimony. And no doubt we have also been influenced by what or whom we believe Jesus to be in our lives, not what He truly is, and thus have erred in our direction, belief and behaviour, just like the Pharisees did. 

That can clearly be seen in all the different religions and denominations, doctrines, beliefs and behaviour held under the same great umbrella called Christianity. Thus the great disunity amongst Christ’s supposed followers. And thus, the lack of substantial testimony from us on Jesus declaration. ‘Ye are the light of the world.’ 

Yes friends, when Jesus returned to heaven, He designated us as His replacement for light in this ungodly world. But have we done that? Not to the extent that we should have, for there are still too many unbelievers out there, who have never heard about Jesus, or heard about Him and refused to believe because of our dark, unlit testimony. 

So my people, this dark and cloudy morning, please let’s remember Jesus words and do our best to put them into action nuh. ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lampstand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt. 5:14-15) 

Those are words of awesome truth people, and if our light was shining as bright and as far reaching as possible, our hold on life worldwide right now would certainly not be as intimidating and tenuous. That means we have to raise our level of shining. In the immortal words of Jesus: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:16) 

And that’s all Jesus really expects of us yes friends; that we give good testimony of Him through our beliefs and behaviour, so that the Father can be glorified, which is what the Father sent him to do. And in these dangerous and uncertain times, it behooves us Christians to come up higher than we ever have, so the world around us can take some courage and assurance in Christ’s guiding light that shines forth through us. So let’ step up to the plate and do better nuh mih people. 

And now, as we go home, let’s boldly and confidently proclaim to the world, who and whose we are by declaring (steups!) our Tuesday Mantra. ‘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!’  

And if we’re sincere, we’ll now go out and share that awesome LOVE and friendship of Christ with others who, in these desperate times, so desperately need to know and come to LOVE Him! Much LOVE!

…light will always overcome darkness…but only when it’s shone there… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 September 2020 Romans 8:18.

Romans 8:18.     ​For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

Well Thursday has opened wet and gloomy… Let’s hope it doesn’t stay that way. But the caffeine is excellent – strong and sweet. (smile) And though life might be filled with trials and adversities, anxieties and fears, we believers are able to keep on moving forward successfully because the most powerful person in the universe, Jesus Christ, dwells within us, and we are also in Him! Wow! What a wonderful situation to be in my brethren! That’s why we say with such positivity and assurance: ‘I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me!’ (Phil. 4:13) 

That’s basic logic. If you are indwelt by the ONE to whom nothing is impossible, then you must also be a champion in life like Him! Glory be! So today, please let us not fall prey to the wiles and deceits and outright lies of the enemy as he tries to encumber our lives with more confusion than we already have. Let’s remember who we are; children of the Most High God Jehovah, believers in Christ Jesus, who ought to be living a Spirit filled life. As Bruh Paul said to the church at Rome: ‘There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.’ (Rom. 8:1) 

Yes friends, as believers who are indwelt by the Holy Spirit of Christ, we ought to listen to Him and follow His direction, because He is our guide, comforter and general advisor. And Bruh Paul continues: ‘For they that are after the flesh do mind (set their minds on) the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.’ (Rom. 8:5) And it’s been clearly stated that believers in Christ need to live by the Spirit of Christ else they don’t belong to Him. 

Hear How Bruh Paul puts it. ‘For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.’ (Rom. 8:14-15) Oh my people, what beautiful, faith filled scriptures! We have not received Christ and his Spirit only to be filled with fear again, but have been made fearless children of God, through adoption. 

Listen to the scholars. ‘8:15. The Spirit of adoption: The Holy Spirit places the believer as a son in God’s family. Abba (Aram for “father”): This is the intimate name used only by members of the family. It’s use here denotes the intimacy of the believer’s relation to God.’ Now isn’t that a most magnificent and desirous position to be in? Certainly! How can one not desire to be in an intimate relationship with Almighty God – Creator and sustainer of ALL – and be able to go to Him with father-like intimacy, just like we can go to our earthly fathers? That’s definitely not wisdom! 

So Bruh Paul relates: ‘The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.’ (Rom. 8:16-18) 

Mama Mia! Yuh hear that mih people? If we suffer for and with Christ, we’ll also be glorified with him! And what we suffering down here on earth today can’t be compared with the glory of life with Christ when His kingdom rules! Glory be! So instead of pouting and complaining about the sufferings down here, we should be concentrating on the joys and pleasures that we will receive later on when we’re glorified with Christ! 

But let’s hear what the scholars have to say: ‘8:16. The witness of the Spirit is the inner assurance of God’s truth. One of the conditions of this inner conviction concerning the things of God is obedience to His known will (John 7:17). God uses this ministry of the Holy Spirit to convince us of truth that cannot be understood other than through divine help (Matt. 16:17). 

Illustration: This witness was obvious in Peter’s confession of Christ (Matt. 16:16-17) Even though others had observed Christ and drawn certain erroneous conclusions, Peter received spiritual insight from God as to who Jesus really was (Matt. 16:17). This enlightenment did not mean he had nothing more to learn, because perhaps within minutes of his confession, he was being rebuked by Jesus for his lack of spiritual insight – (Get thee behind me Satan) (Matt. 16:23)

Application: Christians should be careful always to obey the clearly revealed will of God, so as not to hinder this ministry in their lives. (first ref. Matt. 16:17; Primary Ref. Rom. 8:16, cf. Heb. 6:1-2).’ 

‘8:17. Joint-heirs with Christ: All believers share all of the inheritance together. They also have the promise of glorification if their lives are lived devotedly and sacrificially unto the Lord.’ Yeh friends, just like the inheritance business works down here on earth, so it going to work in Christ’s kingdom…if we live obedient to God. ‘8:18. The sufferings of this present time: See 2 Corinthians 4:17-18. The glory which shall be revealed: The blessed hope of the Christian looks ahead with anticipation to this great moment. See also 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18; Titus 2:13.’ 

It’s all about anticipation precious people, about belief, about faith! And I wanted to share some of those scriptures, but we just don’t have the time or space…maybe tomorrow, if the Lord wills. But if you can, please peruse some of them, they are all very relevant to our Christian life. Now let’s go home declaring (steups!) our Thursday Blessings, which have been magnanimously bestowed on us to help us in our earthly ministry. 

All together now, in strong, sincere voice: ‘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 having confessed all those wonderful blessings, let’s get to sharing them just as magnanimously nuh! Much LOVE!

…walk in the Spirit…so we don’t fulfill the lusts of the flesh… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 September 2020 John 14:19b.

John 14:19b.     ​…because I live, ye shall live also.

The last Sunday friends, the last Sunday of purely technological worship! Glory be! Yeh, the Anglican church is finally reopening its doors next week…and about time too. It will certainly be strange and somewhat uncertain entering those portals of the Lord’s sanctuary to worship after such a long time. But as prime believers we’ll handle it very nicely, just as we handled the sudden stop in physical worship some months ago. Now we don’t expect everyone to show up, since many are still timid and uncertain about the Covid-19 scene and don’t trust the arrangements put in place for the resumption of physical worship. But that’s okay because the important thing is for everyone to feel safe and comfortable in what they do. 

So let’s get the show rolling with a magnificent Christian contemporary song nuh. Something titled ‘Because He Lives,’ written by the popular song writing team of Bill and Gloria Gaither. And if you think the Lord doesn’t move in mysterious ways, then think again nuh, for up to Saturday I couldn’t think of a song to sing today. But a couple days ago a friend had shared a version of ‘Because He Lives,’ and later on Saturday I further shared it with some other believers and that was the end of that. I was so touched by it that I knew it was today’s Song. 

Therefore, without further ado, let’s offer up some sacrifice of praise in a soulful, harmonious and passionate manner, meaning truly believing what we sing. ‘(Chorus: Because He lives, I can face tomorrow Because He lives, all fear is gone Because I know He holds my future And life is worth the living Just because He lives.) (Repeat) God sent His Son they called Him, Jesus He came to LOVE, heal and forgive He lived and died to buy my pardon An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives. (Chorus) 

How sweet to hold a newborn baby And feel the pride and joy he gives But greater still that calm assurance This child can face uncertain days because He lives And then one day I’ll cross the river I’ll fight life’s final war with pain And then, as death gives way to vict’ry I’ll see the lights of glory and I’ll know He lives Because He lives, I can face tomorrow Because He lives, all fear is gone Because I know He holds my future And life is worth the living Just because He lives And life is worth the living Just because He lives And life is worth the living Just because He lives…’ 

And isn’t that the awesome truth my brethren…because Jesus lives, we too will live, and moreover be able to face any and everything that comes against us. As one pastor says, Jesus is alive, and that’s enough! Give Him thanks and praise my people! 

Now most of you don’t know that there’s a rather interesting and touching story behind that song. And here it is, as told by Gloria Gaither to interviewer Lindsay Terry. ‘In the late 1960’s, while expecting their third child, the Gaithers were going through a rather traumatic time in their lives. Bill was recovering from a bout with mononucleosis. It was a special period of anxiety and mental anguish for Gloria. The thought of bringing another child into this world, with all of the “craziness,” was taking its toll on her. 

On New Year’s Eve, she was sitting in their living room, in agony and fear. The educational system was being infiltrated with the God is dead idea, while drug abuse and racial tensions were increasing. Then suddenly, and quite unexpectedly, she was filled with a gentle, calming peace. It was as if her heavenly Father, like an attentive mother bending over her baby, saw his child and came to her rescue. The panic gave way to calmness and an assurance that only the Lord can impart. She was assured that the future would be just fine, left in God’s hands. 

Shortly after the baby was born, both Bill and Gloria remembered that the power of the blessed Holy Spirit seemed to come to their aid. Christ’s resurrection, in all of its power and affirmation in their lives, revitalized their thinking. To Gloria, it was life conquering death in their daily activities. Joy once again dominated the fearful circumstances of the day Those events gave rise to one of the most famous Christian songs of our time, “Because He Lives.” 

In this song, which begins, “God sent His son, they called Him Jesus,” we are reminded that Christ came to this earth. And the purpose for His coming was that we might be able to face tomorrow, with all of the uncertainty that it brings. She also reminds us that God holds the future right in his hands and makes life worth living for all who trust in him.’ 

Ah mih people, what a magnificent, magnanimous and comforting God we serve and worship…and One who moves in such mysterious and unexpected ways His LOVING-kindness to accomplish! So tell me why the world doesn’t gladly and joyfully serve and worship Him eh? Pure pride and stupidity! And that brings us to His simple but yet so important promise: ‘…because I live, ye shall live also.’ (John 14:19b) Glory Hallelujah my faithful friends! 

Oh saints of Christ, His death on the cross of Calvary was important, because there He paid our sin debt in full, but the real crowning glory is His resurrection; His immortal victory over hell, death and grave! Wow! Hades couldn’t hold Him, and because of that it won’t hold those who sincerely believe in Him either! Our faith wouldn’t have been worth anything if Christ had stayed dead, but that miracle of rebirth – for want of a better word –  (smile) makes all the difference. No wonder Bruh Paul’s greatest desire was: ‘That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death.’ (Phil. 3:10) 

What a powerful scripture! And the scholars explain it thus: ‘3:10. This verse may also be paraphrased: “In order that I may personally know Him, that I might both experience His resurrection power and share in His sufferings, and thus I will be more and more conformed to His death.” Paul wants “the righteousness…of God” (vs.9) so that he can obtain a personal relationship with Jesus in actual day to day experience. This knowledge of Christ is obtained by experiencing in daily problems, needs, ministry, and so forth, the same power that raised Jesus from the dead. 

Knowing Christ also entails participating in His sufferings. Paul desires to share in the Lord’s sufferings because they bring him into a deeper and more meaningful relation with Him, companionship in sorrow establishes the most intimate and lasting of ties, as afflicted hearts cling to each other. The result of participating in Christ’s sufferings is that Paul is made like Him in death. This word “death” has a double meaning here, including inward and outward, ethical and physical death. As Jesus died in regard to sin on the cross, so Paul is doing more and more in his daily life. As Jesus was bodily slain, so the apostle, should Caesar’s verdict go against him, is prepared to be slain.’ 

Wow! Now that is the height of discipleship and faith! It’s doubtful though that many of us can attain it, but it’s nonetheless a good standard to aspire to. Let’s see how close we can come to it nuh. (smile) Much LOVE!

…Christ’s death and resurrection…the best news ever… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 July 2020 1 Corinthians 1:25.

1 Corinthians 1:25.     ​Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
 

Grace and peace and LOVE from our heavenly Father be unto you this Friday morning my fellow believers in Christ Jesus! It’s a new day and His mercies are new! Glory be! And the message is that we must abide in Him, regardless of the uncomfortable and dangerous circumstances that surround us, we must be strong and not falter, not give up, for he who endures to the end will be richly rewarded! And all God’s children said a loud and grateful ‘Amen!’ 

Yeh friends, there’s no other name in the universe like that of Jesus, our Lord and Saviour, to whom NOTHING is impossible and through whom we can do ANYTHING He desires of us! So let’s take courage, strength and assurance from those facts today nuh and keep on keeping on, keep on fighting the good fight for which we were created so that we can eventually win the crown of glory that we’ve been so faithfully promised! Sermon done! (smile) 

It’s time to hear what the ordinary workingman has to say. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! And best of all, the weekend is upon us! But what a hot week this has been! Oh brother, both outside and inside, especially in the blooming slave master factory that don’t have no air conditioning! Steups! 

What a cheap man! He refuse to spend the few dollars to put it in, even though they tell him it going to make the machinery last longer, not to mention his employees. We all lost a couple pounds this week, including him, slaving in the boiling heat! To tell the truth though, sometimes the AC not even good enough at home to quench the fiery heat during the nights and them. It’s what you call a real heatwave…and it looks like it going to last even longer. 

Just hope the weekend not too bad nuh so I can get some much needed rest… And then this pandemic and strife thing still going on, with no end in sight to them either…What a bam bam! Pandemic, strife and heat! What a glorious trio! And not even a drop of rain to put out the fire. Although Toronto got a good deluge this week for an hour or so that cause a whole lotta flooding and damage, but nowhere else on the outskirts had anything but a li’l drizzle. 

But what yuh going to do eh? Life’s never been easy…and nobody ever said it was ever going to be either. Yuh just have to live it as best yuh can…look yuh best and be yuh best, enjoy the fruits of yuh labour and say thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Ah mih people, the ordinary workingman might not have a lot of book learning, but he does have life experience that no amount of formal education can ever teach, and it would be very wise of us to pay some attention to his pronouncements, because remember the Lord uses the simple and foolish to upset the applecart of the wise and powerful. 

As Bruh Paul so nicely and wisely put it to the fractious, infighting and thus divided church at Corinth. ‘Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer (debater) of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching (the message preached) to save them that believe.’ (1 Cor. 1:20-21) 

Yeh friends, it wasn’t by wisdom that the world learned of Christ Jesus, but by the message of the cross preached by simple men and women, to those who chose to believe. As Bruh Paul continues: ‘For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom. But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness. But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.’ (1 Cor. 1:22-25) 

Oh my people, even on His worst day, God’s foolishness and weakness is much wiser and much stronger than man’s best! For remember, He said quite plainly that His ways and thoughts are way above ours. (Is. 55:8-9) And logically, they would have to be for Him to do all the awesome things that He’s done. So please let’s pay serious attention to Him nuh, for though it might sound like foolishness to the world’s way of thinking, it’s actually wisdom in spades. 

Now let’s go home showing true wisdom, falling on our bended knees and offering up prayerful sentiments to Him in the form of our Friday Chant. All together now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. It’s been pretty rough…some of it from work, as many of us are now back to work in varied ways, but most of our anxiety still comes from all the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus still causing. We not accustomed to that Lord, and it really telling on us. 

And now, on top of all that, we have racial riots and protests to put up with. Oh Lord, yuh know we can’t handle it on our own and desperately need Your help. Yes, heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. 

So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the sure and wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, so that we can avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to also bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. It’s also a good opportunity to introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion because of the way we, your faithful believers, handle the situation. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And having said all of that, our only recourse now is to be faithful believers, both in word and deed! Much LOVE!

…whether times are good or bad…Christ is ALWAYS the answer…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 June 2020 Matthew 5:14a.

Matthew 5:14a.     ​Ye are the light of the world… 
 

Yes, we’re disappointed because there’s still no corporate worship on this Sabbath Sunday, but since we’re true and faithful followers of the great, powerful and imaginative Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, we will find a way to worship and celebrate the Sabbath while physically distancing! (smile) No doubt about that my people! And we’re not worried, because we know that some day, as soon as the Lord is good and ready, all these present troubles will pass. And all God’s children gave a loud and positive shout of ‘Glory Hallelujah! This too shall end!’ 

But until it does, we have to keep worshipping through technological means, and to tell the truth we still get to do most things, except the physical gathering and touching. But enough talk…we come here to worship not engage in idle chatter. (smile) And as always, we open with a sacrifice of praise, today’s hymn being titled, ‘Give Me Oil in My Lamp.’ And to tell the truth, I didn’t even know that was the correct name until I looked it up yesterday. I always knew it as a local spiritual ditty called, ‘A li’l more Oil in My Lamp,’ sung in some of the more evangelical churches, that got the spirit moving and the feet dancing. 

And so, in honour of that ‘Ole Time Religion,’ we going to sing it that way. I hope you like this one, mih pardner Scotty… hope it brings back memories. (smile) So let’s get the hands a clapping and the feet a dancing and voices in full, harmonious throat, as we sing praises to the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords! 

‘A li’l more oil in my lamp, to keep it burning. A li’l more oil in my lamp, I pray. A li’l more oil in my lamp, to keep it burning. Keep it burning till the break of day. (Refrain: Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King of kings! Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King!) A li’l more LOVE in my heart, to keep me sharing. A li’l more LOVE in my heart, I pray. A li’l more LOVE in my heart, to keep me sharing. Keep me sharing till the break of day. (Refrain) 

A li’l more joy in my heart, to keep me singing. A li’l more joy in my heart, I pray. A li’l more joy in my heart, to keep me singing. Keep me singing till the break of day. (Refrain) A li’l more faith in my heart, to keep me praying. A li’l more faith in my heart, I pray. A li’l more faith in my heart, to keep me praying. Keep me praying till the break of day. (Refrain: Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King of kings! Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King! Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King of kings! Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King!)’ 

Ah mih people, that was indeed a rousing rendition. It reminded me of how the Pentecostal Church where I grew up would be humming and jumping when they gave praise. But I guess to each his own, and I don’t think the Lord refuses any kind of praise, once it’s sincere. And I have one person’s view point on the benefit of the song. ‘For the religious, one interpretation is that it signifies a thirst for spiritual food—spiritual food to get one through the darkest of times in hopes of a brighter day, a clearer vision of one’s path or until one gains their salvation.’ 

And believe me friends, it certainly gives us spiritual food for dark and tough times! When we seek to have more, light, LOVE, joy and faith in our hearts and souls, it does inspire us to rise above our earthly problems and also receive divine guidance and wisdom to do the work that Christ desires of us. And right now I’m seeking some of that divine guidance and wisdom to know where to go from here. (smile) And I believe this is where I’m being guided. 

The first place is to the parable of the ten virgins; five who were wise enough to take extra oil for their lamps, and five who were foolish not to do so. We are expected to be like the first five; wise and take oil with us when we go to wait for the bridegroom at the wedding feast, so that our lights don’t go out if He takes a long time to come. Remember, Jesus expects us to be bright, shining beacons to the world: As He clearly says: ‘Ye are the light of the world… Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:14a; 16) 

And to do that in an excellent and diligent manner, as the song says, we need other things; like LOVE. And hear Jesus on the subject: ‘A new commandment I give unto 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) Oh friends, that seems clear and straightforward! But does our behaviour tell that story? Not nearly enough as it ought to! 

And would you believe that if we truly followed Jesus’ advice, our lives would be filled with that unsurpassable blessing called joy? And not the joy of this world, but Jesus’ special kind. ‘These things have I spoken unto you; that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy may be full.’ (John 13:11) And later on, He again told the disciples: ‘Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.’ (John 16:24) And let’s not forget ‘that the joy of the Lord is our strength.’ (Neh. 8:10) So without it, we’re weak, fragile and unable to do His work properly. 

That brings us to the last piece of the puzzle, but the first one we need to acquire, and the one that keeps us keeping on; faith. That ‘substance (realization) of things hoped for, the evidence (conviction) of things not seen.’ (Heb.11:1) Yes friends, buoyed by hope, we achieve faith; assurance in the New Testament, and this brings us to a certain and sure conviction in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Obviously we can get deeper into all of those topics, but hopefully this will suffice for now, will serve as a catalyst to keep us strong and steadfast in prayer, with LOVE for each other, like shining lights filled with joy, and doing the best we can in these turbulent times. Much LOVE!

…to know Christ’s joy…and LOVE…and peace…is to accept Him forever…as Lord and Saviour…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 May 2020 John 6:39.

John 6:39.    ​And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. 
 
Ah mih people, life really not fair nuh, and it is indeed a bully-boy. Just when you’re down, it chooses to put you even further down! Steups! Good example. A few minutes ago I came down with my coffee, already feeling lousy from lack of sleep, and telling the Lord that I needed His help ever so badly this morning because of my poor state. Next thing I know, I put down the coffee and spill it! Chuh man! That only made me more aggravated and later than I already was, because I had to spend some valuable time cleaning up the mess. 

And would you believe in all the years I’ve been doing this, I can’t remember ever spilling the coffee, even one time before now. But as they say, after one time is two. And I have to chuckle, because I didn’t have any opening remarks in mind, so the Lord gave me something to write about. Oh, how He does move in ever-faithful but ofttimes mysterious ways eh! (smile) How then can we not LOVE and adore Him eh? The One who LOVED us so much that He gave His only Son as a sacrifice for us while we were yet sinners and had no positive relationship with Him? 

The One who created us from the dust of the earth, then breathed His miraculous and marvellous breath of life into our mortal souls eh! The One who makes a way, where there seems to be no way, and eventually works everything out for our good, despite the prevailing circumstances! And yuh know what friends, our great, merciful and miracle working God is the same one who will find a way for us to withstand the rigours and trepidation and calamity of this Coronavirus pandemic that has so many of us living in fear. As He says, this too will pass! 

But as Jesus told His disciples when they could not cure a young epileptic boy: ‘Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.’ (Matt. 17:21) Likewise, this pandemic will only pass through sincere prayer and repentance! Oh friends, I don’t know whether I’m right or wrong nuh, but I feel it deep down in my soul that this plague is a serious wake up call from our heavenly Father. Yes, He is long-suffering and merciful and all that, but there comes a time when even He must get tired of our disobedience and say enough is enough! 

And I believe this is what He’s saying right now. He’s tired and fed up with our efforts to throw Him out of our society and the awful sinful way in which we’re currently living. Remember, He’s a living God, with feelings and emotions just like us, and He’s promised that NO ONE will ever take away His glory: ‘I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.’ (Is. 42:8) And right now in our sinful, idol worshipping society, that’s exactly what we’re trying to do; rob Him of His awesome might and power and honour and glory! 

So don’t be surprised that He might be fighting back. I can assure you, He’s not going to go down without a major fight. That again just goes to show how much He LOVES us, that He’s not willing to see us waste our lives and end up eternally separated from Him, dwelling with the fallen angel Lucifer in Hades, and being eventually destroyed in the lake of fire. Oh friends, Jesus came to earth to save us from sin, and as our Advocate in heaven right now He’s still fighting to save us and give us eternal life. 

Hear these wonderful, reassuring words He spoke down here on earth nuh. ‘I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.’ (John 6:35). Yeh mih people, Jesus is the One through whom eternal life is found! Glory be! And remember what He told the Samaritan woman at the well? ‘Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water (fountain) springing up into everlasting life.’ (John 4:13-14) 

And how can we consider ourselves wise and not want that eternal life eh? But here’s the crux of the matter. Jesus said: ‘All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise (certainly not) cast out. For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up the last day.’ (John 6:37-40) 

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, what wonderful and encouraging sentiments! And if that doesn’t touch you, then listen to these further words of Jesus to the doubting Jews: ‘My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck (snatch) them out of my hand. My Father which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck (snatch) them out of my Father’s hand. I and my Father are one.’ (John 10:27-30) 

And the scholars say of those verses: ‘10:27-29. Never perish: These verses declare the assurance that all believers will be utterly safe from any creature that might wish to destroy them.’ Mama Yo! That’s the best news I’ve heard for the day mih bredrin! No one can take us away from Christ or destroy us if we walk sincerely with Him! So why wouldn’t I want to walk in company with him eh? Ah friends, to me it’s cut and dried that the best way to live this life is by following Christ. 

But we each have to make our own decision on that matter, that’s why the Father gave us free will. But please remember that whatever decision we make, once we depart this earthly life, or Jesus comes again, we cannot change our minds then, and we’ll have to bear whatever consequences those decisions bring, come eternity. Matter fix! 

Now for those of us who choose to follow Christ, let’s go home declaring (steups!) our Wednesday Wail, telling the world of our wonderful and secure position in Christ. All together now, in strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘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 we endure until the end, then it will be even better than we can ask or imagine! Much  LOVE

…let him who has ears to hear…hear…else he’ll certainly feel…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 February 2020 1 Chronicles 16:25.

1 Chronicles 16:25.    ​For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised: he also is to be feared (held in reverential awe) above all gods.
 
And by now, on this bright and sunshiny, but somewhat chilly Wednesday winter’s morn, most of us will have gotten accustomed to the tumbling tumbleweed motion of our lives as we go through the challenging workweek. (smile) Ah, but friends, we believers don’t need to worry about that tumbleweed motion of our lives because our most remarkable Maker has it purposefully planned, right down to the last teardrop, the last breath! And nothing is going to interfere with His plans to work everything out for our good as He grows our faith and matures us into beautiful replicas of His wonderful Son, Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour! Yes, that’s the Master Plan! 

Wow! What a blessing and privilege it is to be a replica of Christ! The inherent problem in accomplishing that though, is that such a feat requires a lot of hard slugging, it certainly doesn’t come easy, and we often have to band our jaw and belly, sacrifice a whole lot, cry plenty eyes water just to get a pass mark in the class. (smile) But the wonderful thing about our amazing, magnificent and magnanimous God is that He never asks us to do anything and not give us the tools to do it. 

Thus, in our desire to become like Christ, He gives us His grace, His mercy, LOVE, compassion, forgiveness, strength, assurance, justification, sanctification, confidence, and whatever else we might happen to need to do His will! And He does it all through the power of His Holy Spirit, the third member of our Holy Trinity, our Triune Godhead. Oh my people, we certainly couldn’t ask for anything more! However, sad as it is, we ofttimes ask for more; because we’re too lazy, too afraid, or some such human frailty. In other words, we want God to not only give us the tools to do the job, but also to do it for us. 

But friends, He’s not going to. We have a covenant, a partnership with Him, whereby He does His part and we do ours. End of story! He will certainly help us accomplish our part, but definitely not do it for us. So let’s not hold out any hope in that regard nuh. We’ve got to stand up on our own two feet sometime or the other, whatever it takes! We’re Christ’s ambassadors down here on earth, His hands, feet, eyes and ears, and He’s depending on us to get His work done, to spread the good news of His gospel all over the world. 

Please note the marvellous words of Bruh David in the psalm he gave to Asaph, the cymbals man and band leader, as they celebrated the bringing of the Ark of the covenant to Jerusalem: ‘Sing unto the Lord, all the earth; show forth from day to day his salvation. Declare his glory among the heathen; his marvellous works among all nations. For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised: he also is to be feared (held in reverential awe) above all gods. For all the gods of the people are idols (worthless things): but the Lord made the heavens. Glory and honour are in his presence; strength and gladness are in his place.’ (1 Chr.16:23-27) 

Oh my people, what awesome truth are contained in those words! And until we fully grasp the truth contained therein, we will not fully realize the awesome position we hold in Christ’s company! Now the bringing of the Ark to Jerusalem was a really big do; a most noteworthy event in the annals of the Jewish people, and Bruh David went out all, both in his activities – dancing and playing before the Lord in the company of his subjects, as well as writing some amazing praise music that a whole big band of established musicians played along with him. 

Can you imagine the scene? It must have been like Carnival Tuesday in T&T; the sun shining hot and bright, the big fancy costumes, the bright dazzling displays of colour, the music jamming loud, and people jumping to high heaven! Mama Yo! Who say they didn’t know how to party in them days eh! (smile)  

Now hear some more awesome truth from Bruh David on the occasion nuh: ‘Give unto the Lord , ye kindreds of the people, give unto the Lord glory and strength. Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come before him: worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness. Fear (tremble) before him, all the earth: the world also shall be stable, that it be not moved. Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice: and let men say among the nations, The Lord reigneth.’ (1 Chr.16:28-31). 

Oh my people, my people, that is exactly what we ought to be saying in these perilous and troubled times! Unless we believers acknowledge the sovereignty of our omnipotent, merciful and gracious God, and behave like it too, how are the unbelievers going to know about Him and the wonderful life that awaits them with Him eh? They won’t. That’s why it’s ever so important that we sing the praises of the Lord and show His true colours to the unbeliever. 

Now here is some interesting info from the scholars on the psalm. ‘16:7. This psalm (with slight variations) is woven into several of the psalms in the Hebrew Psalter (cf. vs. 8-22 with Ps.105:1-15; vs. 23-33 with Ps.96; vs. 34-36 with Ps.106:1, 47-48). It is learned here that those later liturgical adaptations originated with David. The psalm was especially suited for this auspicious occasion. 

This particular psalm exhorts the people to praise Israel’s wonder-working God (vs. 8-11), and encourages its hearers to remember God’s deeds (vs. 12-14), and His unfailing covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (vs. 15-22). David then directs all nations to join Israel in its praise of the holy God to whom all the universe is subservient (vs. 23-33), and closes this song with a section of thanks, petition, and praise (vs.34-36).’  

Let’s do the same nuh: ‘O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever. And say ye, Save us, O God of our salvation, and gather us together, and deliver us from the heathen, that we may give thanks to thy holy name, and glory (triumph) in thy praise. Blessed be the Lord God of Israel for ever and ever. And all the people said, Amen, and praised the Lord.’ (1 Chr. 16:34-36) Oh my fellow believers, that’s how it ought to be, every day of our lives! And yes, we’re only humans with a frail and fickle nature, but that’s no excuse for not praising and worshipping and thanking our great God! 

And now, for those of us who sincerely try, let’s go home declaring (chuh!) our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our true position in Christ. As one body, in strong voice with sincere hearts. ‘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 will that future ever be glorious…more than we can ever ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…O…give thanks unto the Lord…for He is good…for His mercy endureth for ever…

P.S. Yes, it’s a tad long…but it’s ever so nice and encouraging…and I enjoyed writing it! (smile) Hope you enjoy reading it… Much LOVE!

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 November 2019 Romans 8:35.

Romans 8:35.    ​Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

 

It’s that day friends, Sunday, when all roads lead to the Lord’s sanctuary, to praise, give thanks and glorify His holy name, with a humble attitude and penitent heart! Yes, it’s time to refuel our hearts, souls, bodies and minds with His word and the encouragement and confidence that the faithful fellowship of like believers brings. And as always, we begin our worship with a song of praise.

Today’s praise offering is simply titled ‘The Promise,’ a wonderful song of contemporary Christian music, as sung by the Martins, that popular Christian Family Trio out of the Southern U.S. So let’s get soulful and sincere as we raise our voices to heaven, letting our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ know how much we LOVE and adore Him, and how grateful we are for all that He’s done for us through His sacrifice on the cross, but also faithfully keeping the promises He made while down here on earth. 

In strong voice and sweet harmony, let’s sing: ‘I never said that I would give you silver or gold, Or that you will never feel the fire or shiver in the cold. But I did say you’d never, walk through this world alone… Hnnnn! And I did say, don’t make this world your home. I never said that fear wouldn’t find you in the night, Or that loneliness was something, you’d never have to fight. But I did say, I’d be right there by your side… Thank You sweet Jesus! And I did say, I’d always help you fight. ‘Cause you know I made a promise, that I intend to keep…My grace will be sufficient in every time of need…My LOVE will be the anchor, that you can hold on to. This is the promise…This is the promise, I’ve made to you. 

I never said that friends will never turn their backs on you, Or that the world around you wouldn’t see you as a fool. But I did say, like me, you’ll surely be despised. And I did say, my ways confound the wise. I didn’t say you’d never taste the bitter kiss of death, Or have to walk through chilly Jordan to enter into rest, But I did say, I’d be waiting, right on the other side… (yeah, yeah…He is waiting!) And I did say, I’ll dry every tear you cry. ‘Cause you know I made a promise that I’ve prepared a place, and someday, sooner than you think, you’ll see me face to face… And you’ll sing with the angels and the countless multitude. This is the promise…This is the promise, I’ve made to you. 

(Talk – I don’t know where you’ve been walking, but I know in life’s devastation, He will pursue you forever. You’ve picked the One who will never let you go! He’s able to do above and beyond anything we can ever ask or think. Hallelujah!) So just keep on walking, don’t turn to the left or right, And in the midst of darkness, let this be your light, That hell can’t separate us, and you’re gonna make it thru… This is the promise…This is the promise, I’ve made to you. ooooooh, this is the promise, I’ve made to you…this is the promise, I’ve made to you…’ 

Ah mih people, where to begin eh? I really don’t know. Originally I’d thought of finding a scripture for every promise, but when I came to do it, I realized that it would be a humongous task, taking up much more space and time than I have. Anyway, I’ve found a passage of scripture, one that we know really well, that somewhat encompasses all our hopes, dreams, faith and assurance in Christ. Listen to Bruh Paul as he expatiates to the church at Rome. 

‘Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or 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. 8:35-39) 

Yeh friends, if we truly believe and trust and surrender our lives to Christ, NOTHING can, or will ever separate us from His eternal and unconditional LOVE! Now check out this explanation from the scholars: ‘8:38-39. We cannot be separated from God’s LOVE, because it is set forth in a person who is God Himself, Jesus Christ, our Saviour. God’s desire to redeem believers cannot be frustrated, because He is infinitely greater than any potential enemy. His plan will be realized because it is his purpose (cf. v.28).’ Who can thwart the well laid plans of the Creator eh? Nobody! 

And I’ll spoon feed us, though we know v.28 better than most other verses. (smile) ‘And we know that all things work together for good to those that LOVE God, to them who are the called (the elect, the saints) according to his purpose.’ (Rom. 8:28) Oh faithful saints, as the scholars say, God is working out all things for good, but we who LOVE Him can appreciate it best, because we LOVE Him come what may. Whatever happens doesn’t change our LOVE for Him one iota! And that’s certainly how it ought to be! So let’s go out and show that to a disbelieving  the world nuh! Much LOVE!

…and, lo…I am with you always…even unto the end of the world… (Matt.28:20b)

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