Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 September 2018 Luke 9:23.

Luke 9:23.   And he (Jesus) said to them all, If any man will (desires to) come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.

Cooler days are here again! You can bet your bottom dollar on that friends! Come September, the cool weather just explodes on us. Although in these times of climate change who knows what will happen. Yesterday evening though, I noticed that some maple trees in my area have already begun turning brown in preparation for the long, dry, cold, winter months. 

Do they know something that we don’t know! It’s possible. But not to worry, once we’re walking hand in hand with Jesus, we can face anything that comes against us, remember we’re conquerors in His Name! Glory to God! 

And with it being Saturday, let’s take a look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Hear this first one: ‘Throw kindness around like confetti.’ 

Mama Mia! And if you’re a sincere follower of Jesus, that is exactly what you ought to be doing, for kindness is, was, and always will be the hallmark of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and if it’s not in your repertoire of attributes, then you’re not a sincere follower. 

And this next one says: ‘It is better to walk alone, than with a crowd going in the wrong direction.’ And that’s the gospel truth my brethren! You’re certainly better off alone than with the crowd going in the wrong direction. Some of us will remember being cautioned by our parents: ‘Don’t follow the crowd!’ And that’s usually wise advice, for the crowd is usually taking the easy way out, following Lucifer, and doing what they’re not supposed to do. 

So even if you get lonely treading that wise path that leads in the right direction, remember you’re NEVER really alone, because Jesus is ALWAYS with you, faithfully keeping His promises to never leave nor forsake you! Oh, our Jesus is so wonderful! How could we not LOVE Him eh! 

And this next quote reminds us to: ‘Remember, for everything you have lost, you have gained something else. Without the dark, you would never see the stars.’ Likewise friends, if we didn’t have rain, we would never appreciate the sun and its brilliant light. So please try to not focus so much on what you’ve lost, but on what you’ve gained through the loss. (smile) 

Now hear this tongue breaker: ‘One day it just clicks. You realize what’s important and what is not. You learn to care less about what other people think of you and more about what you think of yourself. You realize how far you’ve come and you remember when you thought things were such a mess that you would never recover. And you smile. You smile because you are truly proud of yourself and the person you’ve fought to become.’ 

Glory be for that day my brethren! That’s the day when we truly discover the Lord in our hearts! When we truly surrender our lives to Him and realize that He is ALL that really matters! Wow! What an enlightening day that usually is! 

And this last quote is the basis for our writing today: ‘Sometimes the right path is not the easiest one.’ And that’s no lie my fellow believers! The right path in this life is following Jesus, but hear what He says in our Bit for those who want to follow Him. ‘And he (Jesus) said to them all, If any man will (desires to) come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.’ 

Now that’s definitely not an easy row to hoe my people! That’s a daily denial of self! Note the young ruler who came to Jesus seeking eternal life. Note his sad, despondent reaction when Jesus told him eternal life would be his, if he sold his many possessions and gave to the poor, then came back and followed him. (Matt.19:16-22)

Unfortunately too many of us feel that way about our earthly possessions. But yuh see what Jesus went through on our behalf? It wasn’t easy for Him, even though He was God in human flesh. Now we most likely won’t go through as much ‘sufferation’ as He did, but we will definitely go through some, most likely more than we desire or care for. (smile) 

And Jesus didn’t mince words on the subject. He very clearly informed the disciples, and consequently all who came after, like us: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace: In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

Wow! What reassuring words my breddren! Though He tells us very clearly that we will face trouble in this evil world, we’re not to worry about it, because He has overcome the world with His sacrificial death and resurrection. And even when trials come against us, if we’re sincerely walking with Him, we’ll find peace; the peace of God, which passes all human understanding, that shall keep (guard) our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:7) 

Yeh friends, that peace is so special, that only true believers in Christ can experience it. Hear how Jesus explains it. ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ (John 14:27) Yeh friends, that peace is not of this world, but it comes from the Prince of Peace, so it’s a mighty tool in the lives of believers. 

And we’ll close with some more authoritative words of Jesus, re our Bit. ‘For whosoever will (desires to) save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose (loses) his life for my sake, the same shall save it. For what is a man advantaged (benefited), if he gain the whole world, and lose himself (is destroyed), or be cast away (lost)?’ (Luke 9:24-25) 

Now that’s a very good question friends? Do we want to have all the earthly wealth and lose our eternal soul, be separated from our Triune God in eternity? For all our sakes, I hope not. That means we have to seriously buckle down, and each and every day, pick up our cross and walk with it, the way Jesus did with His, in true obedience to His Father’s will. Much LOVE!

…earthly life might be difficult…but the rewards of eternity with God are certainly worth it…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 November 2017 Hebrews 1:3.

Hebrews 1:3.   Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person , and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged (cleansed) our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high. 

Welcome, welcome, one and all, to another wonderful day on God’s great earth! He has so much good stuff planned for us that I’m not sure we can handle it all. (smile) But of this one thing I’m sure; that He will give us all the help we need to walk in obedience and do His awesome will. Glory to our great God my people! 

And without further ado, let’s get right into our Bit, because we have lots to say today. As if we don’t have lots to say everyday. (smile) But this is a long and intricate Bit, needy of much explanation. 

‘Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged (cleansed) our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high.’ Oh my people, what a magnificent and awesome being is our Jesus! 

Now yesterday we got some explanation as to the importance of Jesus in the revelation of God, and His position re the prophets and angels. He has presented the full story of what the Father planned from the beginning to the end. So here is what the scholars have to say re our Bit. 

‘1:3. Christ’s person, power and position are all expressed in this verse. He is described as being the brightness of God’s glory. The word being, whose force is “eternally being,” guards against the idea that Jesus became the Son at some point during His earthly ministry. He did not become deity; He always was equal with the Father. The attributes ascribed to Him express His very nature. They were neither added to nor taken from Him during His earthly life. 

The “brightness” spoken of here refers to a radiance or a shining forth of the divine glory. As the rays are intrinsically related to the sun, with neither one existing apart from the other, so the Father and the Son are essentially one. Further, the Son is the express image or imprint (as of a die perfectly representing the original design) of the Father’s person (nature). 

The radiant light implies the oneness of the Son with the Father; the imprint expresses the distinctness of the Son from the Father. Yet, oneness and distinctness are implicit in each: thus they enhance and balance each other. 

Upholding all things manifests the power of the Son. Verse 2 has already presented Him as Creator and hence the heir of all things. Certainly He is far superior to the prophets with whom He has just being compared, (vs.1) and to the angels to whom He will be compared (vs.4). 

“Upholding” (Gr. pheron), more precisely stated, describes the Son as “carrying” all things. Christ is not viewed simply as an Atlas supporting the dead weight of the world, but as the Creator who is now sustaining and bringing it to its goal. Compare the similar teachings of Colossians 1:16-17. 

Sat down…on high reveals the position of the Son. When He had provided purification for sin, He sat down on high. This sitting does not imply a present inactivity; rather it suggests His finished redemptive work, quite in contrast to the unending sacrifices of the Levitical priest (cf. chs.7, 9,10). 

The author of Hebrews is virtually silent concerning Christ’s resurrection, yet he repeatedly stresses the Ascension and its significance (cf. 4:14; 6:19-20; 7:26; 8:1; 9:24; 10:12; 12:2).’ 

Oh friends, yuh see what I meant when I said we had plenty to talk about. And I do hope we understand it all. I know it sounds somewhat confusing, but if we take it line by line, one step at a time, we will eventually get what the scholars mean. 

And by the way, I just looked up all those scripture references at the end, and they are interesting. Taking a moment to do so yourself would indeed be beneficial.(smile) 

The long and short of the story is simply that Christ is El Numero Uno; Number One; the Father’s Right hand man! He came to earth as a man and saved us by sacrificing His sinless life on our behalf, which means NO MORE sacrifices are necessary. The big debt of sin was paid by Christ’s death ONCE and FOR ALL TIME! 

We just need to believe or not believe in Him now to be saved or suffer eternal separation from the Holy Trinity forever. So it’s now up to each individual to make his or her choice. And for those of us who choose to believe, let’s go home today sincerely declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the evil world know, without a doubt, who and whose we are. 

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

And now, beloved children of God, let’s go out and share that beautiful and wonderful LOVE of our friend Jesus with the world, as He desires of us. Much LOVE!

…having Jesus in one’s life… is…is so refreshing and rejuvenating…why would I follow anyone else eh…

 

  

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 November 2017 Psalm 103:5.

Psalm 103:5.   Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

So we’re into the second day of our workweek friends…what’s new and exciting eh? And most of us simply shake our heads and mutter: ‘Nothing nuh. Just the same ole, same ole, work and more work.’ 

And yes, unfortunately, that’s the way most of life is; bland and unexciting. But if we are followers of Jesus, we ought to at least have some of His LOVE, joy and peace in our supposedly bland lives, because those are three attributes He endeavours to give to all who sincerely believe in Him. 

Now here is this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, which demonstrates Jesus’ LOVE and doting on us. It’s titled, ‘Lord, You LOVE to Say Yes.’  

Please pray with me: ‘Lord, I asked you for abundant life Rich, challenging, full of adventure And You said Yes. I asked you for an undisturbable joy Independent of transitory change And You said Yes. 

I asked You to thread my tears into a song When I was shattered and torn with grief And You said Yes. I asked You to steady me when I staggered – To hold me when I struggled To seize me when I resisted And You said Yes. 

I asked You to forgive my vain grasping My foolish fears, my willful pride And You said Yes. I asked You to be my Helper, my friend My Light in the darkness And You said Yes. 

I asked You to guide me all my life With Your wisdom, Your counsel Your captivating LOVE And You said Yes. Sometimes Lord I feel like a spoiled child Who gets whatever he asks for. You overwhelm me with joy For You LOVE to say Yes!’ 

Oh friends, I don’t know about you all nuh, but typing out that poem just made me chuckle and lifted my spirits, because that’s exactly how our heavenly Father treats us when we come to Him in sincerity and truth – like a spoiled child. 

And oh, isn’t it wonderful to have a doting and concerned Father like that? A Father who looks after ALL our needs, brings joy and gladness to out hearts, makes straight our paths with His eternal wisdom, dries our tears and comforts us when we hurt? Ohhhh, it surely is! 

The problem though is that most of us don’t see and appreciate the upside of our wonderful God, when He uplifts us. We just see the downside, when he doesn’t do, or give us what we want. Then we really behave like spoiled, ungrateful brats! 

That brings us to these wonderful and immortal words of Bruh David from Psalm 103 –Thanksgiving for God’s mercy. ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; 

Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with LOVING-kindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.’ (Ps.103:2-5) 

Oh my people, what a wonderful God we serve and worship! And the Bible Promise for the poem above is also our Bit! Glory to God! He satisfies us with good things and renews us like an eagle, so that we can soar and fly in His universe and do all the things He requires of us! 

So why won’t we LOVE, adore, exalt, glorify, worship and obediently serve Him eh? Why are we allowing the evil fool Lucifer to get the better of our world and us eh? Please listen to these prophetic and true words of Isaiah on the subject. 

‘Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint (weak); and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. 

Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.’ (Is.40:28-31) 

What a glorious bit of scripture my people! We all know it, and oftimes spout it too, so why don’t we live it eh? Only God really knows. 

However, from this day henceforth, I’m asking us to promise God, and us, to live with that awesome promise boosting our hearts and spirits, so that we can diligently do His work with joy and peace, knowing that He will always be with us. 

And all God’s people said a loud and heartfelt ‘Amen!’  

Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, proudly letting the world know who and whose we are! In strong voice and sincere sense of purpose: 

‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am thebeloved 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!’ 

Mama Mia! What gospel truth! Now let’s go out and prove it to the unbelieving world as Jesus desires of us. Much LOVE!

…children of God…be not faint…arise and retake his kingdom…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 May 2017 Exodus 34:6.

Exodus 34:6.   And the Lord passed by before him (Moses), and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.

Well mih breddren, the Mother’s Day celebrations over now! Hope we celebrated our mothers in fine style, but that we’ll also show them a greater level of appreciation and gratitude all throughout the year, rather than on just this one day. I know they like the fuss and bother on their special day, but I’m sure they’ll prefer to have a li’l of that each and every day where possible. 

Anyway, it’s time to get back to the common grind and daily task, the humdrum aspects of a working life, so that we can enjoy the fruits of our labour. And I know that many of us are suffering from too much celebrating, and it’s difficult to get up and face the very idea of going to work, but get up and go, we must. 

So to help us with the Monday morning wake up, we have this antidote, this prayer called the Monday Morning Battle Hymn that jolts us awake even better than a hot, strong cup of java. (smile) So let’s sing it now with lots of enthusiasm, expectant faith and hungry hope nuh. 

‘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!’ 

That was pretty good friends, considering the state of our livers! (smile) Jesus, our choirmaster smiled knowingly at some of the harshness, but He respected and acknowledged our enthusiastic effort. So with the adrenaline bubbling in our veins, let’s go out now and take the battle to the heathen, this Monday morning in Jesus’ name, for the glory of God the Father! 

And all God’s people declared a loud and proud: ‘Praise the Lord! His goodness reigns forever!’ 

And that it surely does, as the Lord Himself proclaimed to Moses when he went up the mountain the second time for the tables of stone containing the Ten Commandments. ‘And the Lord passed by before him (Moses), and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.’ 

Now that’s our great God Himself, extolling some of His many wonderful attributes, goodness being one of them. And since we know that he cannot lie, then we must accept His words as gospel truth. Now, let’s just look at a few scriptures, from the human perspective, which prove the point. 

And one of the most well-known is that verse from Psalm 27 – The Lord is my light and my salvation, where Bruh David ardently proclaims: ‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.’ (Ps.27:13) 

So true friends, so true! What’s the purpose of having this good God eh, if we can’t experience some of His goodness in our earthly pilgrimage? 

Now hear another mighty man of God, Bruh Paul, as he admonishes the Romans re judging others is to condemn self. ‘And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgement of God? Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and long-suffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?’ (Rom.2:3-4) 

Ah mih people, so wonderful is God’s goodness that it leads us to repentance! Praise his Holy Name! 

And listen to Bruh David again, this time from Psalm 31 – In thee O Lord, do I put my trust. ‘Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men! Thou shalt hide them in the secret (places) of thy presence from the pride (plots) of man: thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion (shelter) from the strife of tongues.’ (Ps.31:19-20) 

Oh friends, we can’t ask any more than that from God! He’s got all those who believe in Him covered on all fronts. And what’s the purpose of all that goodness eh? So that we can go forth here on earth and proclaim it, as well as show it through the way we live our daily lives. The Lord’s goodness is meant to be shared my people, not merely hoarded for one’s own good! 

Now let’s go out today and show it in spades nuh; let’s broadcast it to all and sundry: the Lord is GOOD! He is GOOD INDEED! Much LOVE!

…true goodness can only beget goodness…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 November 2016 Psalm 139:1.

Psalm 139:1.    O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me.

Ah friends, I think I prefer the going to bed late and getting up late yes. At least when I get up I don’t have any back pains. I might be a li’l groggy (smile) but a few sips of java usually banishes that grogginess. 

And if I so desire, I can always go back to sleep after writing the Bit. I know it makes the Bit later than I want it to be, but I can’t change the night owl nature in me. I just feel more comfortable that way. 

Anyhow, enough of my rambling, the grogginess is gone. (smile) Here is something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, which I think is quite applicable to many of us Christians. It’s called ‘Turnabout.’ 

Please read with me: ‘God, for so long I thought that by praying I could change Your mind. Often I prayed Fervently, pleadingly Until I felt Emotionally pulverized. 

Then I gradually began to grasp That the purpose of prayer Is to find Your mind And let You change mine. 

Little by little The turnabout is renewing me. Slowly I begin to feel A settling quietness. I wait while You woo me To Your will, dear Lord. I wait until my thoughts Harmonize with Yours. 

For in my deepest heart Despite my guarded resistance I somehow sense That what You want for me Is stupendously more Than anything I could Dream or wish or want For myself.’ 

And isn’t all of that the gospel truth friends? It surely is! So many times we get these ideas and try to bend God to our will, rather than bending our will to His. 

But if we’re serious about our relationship with Him, gradually, li’l by li’l, He’ll show us that life is so much better when we bow to His will than if we try to force ours on Him. Remember who is the Big Boss? 

He is the Creator and Controller, we are merely His minions, beloved though we might be. And thus it is our job to bow to Him, rather than the other way around. 

And the promise for that poem is our Bit for today. ‘O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me.’ 

And if we hearken back to what we were just saying, we’ll understand that our great and wonderful God knows everything about us, since He created us. Listen to Bruh David as he continues to expatiate (smile) on the everlasting presence and power of God. 

‘Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising; thou understandest my thought afar off. Thou compasseth (comprehendeth) my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. 

For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O Lord, thou knowest it altogether. Thou hast beset (enclosed or hedged) me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.’ (Ps.139:2-6) 

That says it all my brethren! The Lord knows EVERYTHING about us, even before we do. That’s why it doesn’t make sense to hide anything from Him. We’re just foolishly fooling ourselves if we think we can do that. 

Now let me share an interesting explanation from the scholars, re the Comparative Attributes of God. ‘Psalm 139. The comparative attributes of God contrast human abilities with the divine nature. Everyone has some knowledge, but only God has all knowledge (omniscience). Every person has some degree of power, but only God has unlimited power (omnipotence). 

Illustration: Psalm 139 lays a foundation for understanding the comparative attributes. The omniscience of God is seen in verses 1-6. The omnipresence of God is seen in verses 7-11. The omnipotence of God is seen in verses 12-16. 

Application: A Christian’s response to the comparative attributes of God should be to surrender to His leadership because He is wise, He is able to protect us, and He knows the true way to life with Himself. (First Ref. Gen.3:8; Primary Ref. Ps.139:1; cf. Eph.1:8).’ 

Oh my people, yuh see the only behaviour that makes sense in our position is to surrender our will to the Lord, because He knows best! 

Even Jesus in His gravest and greatest time of need – before His crucifixion – pleaded with the Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane: ‘O my father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except (unless) I drink it, thy will be done.’ (Matt.26:42) 

Yeh friends, we can plead for grace and mercy and whatever, but in the long run we must, or ought to submit to the Lord’s will, for that’s what it means to be a true and faithful Christian. End of sermon! (smile) 

Now let’s go home wailing our Wednesday Wail with true passion and sincerity. All together 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 I sincerely hope we put all of that into action today my people. Oh, what a joy it is to be in league with Jesus! Much LOVE!

…when a Christian surrenders to God’s will…he has no more worries…Glory Hallelujah…!

P.S. I know it’s late, but it’s glorious! (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 September 2016 Galatians 5:16.

Galatians 5:16.    This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

‘Monday, oh Monday! Oh how do I LOVE thee? Let me count the ways…’ (smile) 

Ah friends, so many of us dislike Monday, and it’s such a wonderful day… And I hear all the steupsing and complaining of those who disagree with my praise of Monday. That’s because we haven’t handled the weekend right, or we just blooming lazy and don’t want to go to work, but yet still expect to enjoy all the perks of working. 

Anyway, the long and short of the story is if you expect to eat, then you must work, as per Bruh Paul to the Thessalonians. (2 Thess.3:10) Too many of us nowadays, including supposed Christians, feel entitled, are expecting hand outs and believe that the world owes them a living. 

But the truth is my brethren, the world owes us nothing whatsoever! We owe the world, to try and make it a better place than how we found it. How did John Kennedy, the U.S President put it? ‘Consider not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.’ And that’s how it ought to be! 

Enough palaver though, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn and get ourselves together to go out and make the world a better place. 

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

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

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

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

That wasn’t bad at all my people, somewhat raspy, but it put a smile on the face of our choirmaster Jesus. And that’s the important thing; keeping Jesus happy with our earthly doings. And the very best way to do that is by being obedient to our Bit. ‘This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.’ 

Now yesterday we looked at what basically constituted walking in the flesh, today we’ll check out what it means by walking in the Spirit. Listen to Bruh Paul expatiate to the Galatians. (smile)  

‘But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.’ (Gal.5:22-23) 

Yes friends, those are the attributes that a Christian is supposed to show when walking in the Spirit. And the scholars give us a lengthy explanation, which I feel compelled to share, since it will help our understanding of the situation. 

‘5:22. The word fruit is significant for three reasons. (1) It means the result, product, outcome or effect produced by the Spirit in the believer’s life. (2) Unlike “the gifts of the Spirit” (plural), only some of which are given to a Christian, each believer is to have all nine virtues composing “the fruit of the Spirit” (singular). (3) As fruit on a tree takes time to grow and mature, so the Spirit does not cultivate these virtues in the believer’s life overnight. 

LOVE is the willing, sacrificial giving of oneself for the benefit of another without thought of return. Joy is the gladness of heart. Peace is tranquility of mind, freeing one from worry and fear. Long-suffering is patience with others, the opposite of a short temper, a disposition quietly bearing injury. Gentleness is kindness. Goodness is generosity. Faith is dependability.’  

‘5:23. Meekness is gentleness, that is courtesy and consideration in one’s relations with others. Temperance is self-control, that is, the ability to harness and control one’s passions and lusts.’  

There we have it my people, a breakdown of the nine virtues that are associated with the fruit of the Spirit. Yuh see, a lot is expected of us Christians, because our Lord and Saviour, our indisputable Leader, Jesus Christ, expects excellence from His followers, not some wishy-washy, leggo-beast, compromising, sitting on the fence behaviour. 

And we all know it’s not easy to come up higher in this evil world, but it doesn’t happen overnight. As the scholars remind us these virtues take time to grow and mature, as the Holy Spirit that dwells within us nurtures them. 

So please, let’s not beat up ourselves if we are falling down in any virtue(s), because that does not help the situation. When we find we’re not measuring up to our true potential, let’s turn to God in prayer and ask Him for help in whatever area we’re lacking in. 

You know He’ll never refuse us anything that makes us more like His wonderful Son, Jesus Christ. So let’s sincerely and faithfully work at those virtues as we go out and face the enemy today and everyday of our earthly lives. It’s oh so necessary, if we are to spread the gospel to the whole world and fulfill Jesus’ LOVE Revolution. Much LOVE!

…Christians ought to be fertile ground…so that the Holy Spirit can grow good fruit within them…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 February 2016 Psalm 103:11

Psalm 103:11.   For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy (LOVING-kindness) toward them that fear him.

Once again friends and neighbours, on this bright and beautiful Sunday morning, I’m coming to you from my little cottage by the sea in sweet Tobago, aptly called ‘Sea Breeze.’ (smile) 

Got back here late last night. And is it ever so good to be back home in Tobago again! As they say, there’s no place like home. And this is my home away from home right now. 

Anyway, this morning I’m bringing words of LOVE, compassion, mercy, forgiveness, understanding, grace, and blessings from our heavenly Father; all the attributes of which He is the Supreme Possessor and Giver. 

And all God’s people declared loudly: ‘Thanks be to God, who gives us generously of all His attributes!’ And we all know that as gospel truth friends! 

Now I’ve got a lot to share today, so let’s begin right away with this quote from our friend Anselm, who delights in inspiring us to live a better tomorrow. And this rather appropriate quote tells us that: ‘Believing is seeing. You gotta believe something will happen for you before you see it. Have faith in the process of getting there.’ 

And that’s ever so true my people! In Christ’s realm, you have to believe it before you see it. With Christ, believing is seeing, not like the world thinks, that seeing is believing. That’s where those two great attributes, hope and faith come in; for without them we can’t believe without seeing. 

And to help us along in that regard, Gramps Schuller (Robert H. Schuller) from his Hours of Power Devotional tells us about our EQ as opposed to our IQ. 

Now our IQ or Intelligence Quotient is naturally related to our intelligence. However, our EQ or Emotional Quotient is related to our hope and faith. Gramps defines a high EQ as ‘a heart that has strong faith, unquenchable hope, and passionate LOVE.’ 

Glory Hallelujah! Oh how I wish that all God’s children were blessed with such a high EQ! Unfortunately though, we’re not, but fortunately it is indeed possible and very necessary that we build up that high EQ. And that is all a part of what out Bit is about; trying to keep us focused on God, His Word and His plan for our lives. 

Now remember though, that the Bit IS NOT sufficient reading and studying material for a child of God. It is a useful catalyst, but we all need to get deeply involved in the Word and fellowship with other believers on our own. That’s the only way we’ll ever truly grow to a likeness of Christ, achieve a high EQ, which is our basic objective. 

Now I haven’t kept you all up to date on my recent activities, sorry about that, (smile) but I can only write what the Lord directs me to write. And thankfully He’s given me some room for that today. 

Well you all know that I was in Trinidad for the last few days. You also know I went to the Southland by water taxi and had a great time. 

On Friday evening we also had a rollicking time as some friends and family gathered with me in the lobby bar area of the Radisson Hotel where I was staying. The hotel has a happy hour every Friday evening from 5 to 7, but our happy hour lasted from about six to eleven. Hn, Hn! 

We laughed and talked and drank and munched some chicken wings the hotel provided, shared old memories and made some new ones that we can share at a later date. Glory to God! 

I saw a couple of friends whom I hadn’t seen since I left the UWI Mona campus in Jamaica in 1969. Brother! That’s something like 45 years. But what I like about these old friendships is that though we don’t see each other often, when we meet, it’s just like we saw each other yesterday, we pick up from right where we left off. That is what true friendships and relationships are all about! 

Enough about my activities though. I’ll leave yesterday’s activities for tomorrow though, because it was truly an eye opener for me, and will take up too much time and space. 

So let’s get to our oh so wonderful, encouraging and edifying Bit. ‘For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy (LOVING-kindness) toward them that fear him.’ 

Yes Friends what a wonderful analogy to show how great God’s mercy is towards those of us who revere and worship Him – as high as the heaven is above the earth! Wow! That’s pretty high! So just imagine how much LOVING-kindness He has stored up and pours down on us nuh. 

And all I can say in response is: ‘All glory and honour be to our magnificent and magnanimous God who is so interested in our welfare, in every aspect of our lives!’ 

The problem here though is that many of us have a problem in truly believing that Almighty God, that great entity on high, can be interested in our plain and simple, lowly and mundane lives. But my people, He truly does. He made us and has a big stake in everything that happens in our earthly sojourn. 

Listen to how Bruh David continues in Psalm 103, from which our Bit is taken. ‘As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it (remember it) no more. 

But the mercy (LOVING-kindness) of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear (revere) him, and his righteousness unto children’s children.’ (Ps.103:15-17) 

Ah mih breddren, our God’s mercy spans time from whenever it began to whenever it ends, if ever, and is available to all generations during that time. What more can we ask eh? Not a whole lot, except His guidance and strength to keep on LOVING Him and being obedient to His holy will, so that we can keep on enjoying His (LOVING-kindness.) 

Yes friends, it is somewhat of a conundrum; we have to LOVE and obey God, but at the same time we do need His strength, wisdom and guidance to do it. Yuh see how we’re inextricably tied up with our Creator! 

And we’ll end with these wise words from Bruh David. ‘Bless ye the Lord, all ye his hosts; ye ministers (servants) of his, that do his pleasure. Bless the Lord, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the Lord, O my soul.’ (Ps.103:21-22) 

Now that’s wisdom for all the ages! Much LOVE!

…yes…we do have free choice…but to wander away from God…means we’re not using that free choice wisely…

 

 

 

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