Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 February 2019 Luke 12:32.

Luke 12:32.   ​Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.
 

Well it’s the middle of the workweek and most of us are catching our second wind, but we have to be careful because we seem to be playing some sort of weather musical chairs. Remember just last week it was a winter storm, then rain and flood? Well this morning I came down and looked outside and it was white as snow! (smile) It didn’t seem like a whole lot, but if the place is covered all over, then there’s too much snow in my opinion…as though that counts. 

But then I heard some noise like stones hitting the window panes, only to discover freezing rain was also in action! And that’s possibly the worst combination you can have. So for all of you who have to go out today, please, please be careful because the snow is going to hide the ice and falling is definitely not recommended for this time of year. (smile) 

But what’s certainly recommended is walking closer with Jesus, walking in lockstep with Him! For as the Daily Bread Devotional quote so rightly tells us: ‘There is no need to fear where you are going, when Jesus is going with you!’ Oh Glory Be my people! And that’s the living truth! Once Jesus is alongside us there’s no cause to fear because He is the MAN! He is the ONE in total control of ALL that happens in heaven and down here on earth! 

So why should we fear if we have the Big Boss Man walking alongside us eh; securely holding our hands and whispering sweet encouragement? No reason whatsoever! So why are so many of us supposed Christians still so afraid of even our own shadows eh? We’re afraid to go out and confront the heathen, the devil, and whoever comes against us. We don’t want to make waves because somebody might complain, so we either stay quiet or compromise ourselves with some unworthy actions. 

Now just think of what would have happened to us, what our situation would currently be like if Jesus had been afraid to make waves and just compromised with the heathen? We’d all be still headed for Hades, for hell fire and damnation, instead of having heaven as a wonderful and viable option! So what we going to do today is just refresh our memories with some doh fear talk from the Good Book that we all know and LOVE to spout, but when push comes to shove, we fraid to put into action! 

And we going to start right at the beginning, where the Israelites on their way out of bondage in Egypt came upon the impassable Red Sea with Pharaoh and his Egyptian army hot on their heels. ‘And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation (deliverance) of the Lord, which he will show to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace (be quiet).’ (Ex.14:13-14) 

And we all know what happened on that most momentous day; the Lord parted the Red Sea through Moses, and the people walked across on dry land, then He closed back up the Red Sea and drowned Pharaoh and his whole army. One would have thought that the Israelites would never have forgotten such a day. But unfortunately, as soon as they got over the other side and found a li’l rough going, they began to complain and carry on against Moses and God, and thus spent forty years wandering in the wilderness for their lack of belief and foolish complaining. 

But don’t laugh nuh friends, because we’re doing the same thing today; full well knowing the power of our God, but still being afraid of life! But moving on: Here’s another verse we all know and spout, but don’t truly action. This is from Bruh David’s famous psalm -the Lord is my shepherd.’ Remember these words: ‘Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.’ (Ps.23:4) 

Think on that friends…and at the same time on these other words of Bruh David: ‘The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?’ (Ps.27:1) Good question that my brethren! 

And the Lord told Isaiah when He promised that Israel would be restored to Zion: ‘Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense; he will come and save you.’ (Is.35:4) And we all know that He did just that! 

And how many times did Jesus tell His disciples and those around Him to fear not eh? We’ll just mention this one when He was talking about man’s first priority should be seeking the kingdom of God. ‘Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’  And if we don’t know that by now, then our Christian walk is really in jeopardy. 

Then Bruh Paul had these words for the church at Rome: ‘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) So friends, if we are the children of God, then what do we have to fear eh? I’ll let you answer that. (smile) 

And we’ll close with this last and oh so popular verse; words of Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind. Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of (share with me) the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God.’ (2 Tim.1:7-8) What more can I say eh friends? Bruh Paul said it all! 

But we can definitely go home declaring (right ho) our Wednesday Wail with sincere hearts and minds, letting the world know our position in Christ! In strong voice now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! 

Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And one of these days, when we’re all in heaven, I’ll remind us of how I kept saying that the future with Jesus would be even greater than we can ask or imagine, and you wouldn’t believe me! (smile) Much LOVE!

…doing anything right isn’t easy…but living for Jesus…oh my,my…it brings out of this world benefits…heavenly rewards…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 January 2019 Luke 4:24.

Luke 4:24.   ​And he said unto them, Verily, I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.
 

And it continues, seemingly unabated…Yes friends, I’m talking about the iron grip that the soul, body, spirit and mind numbing cold spell currently has on most of North America! Brother! It’s something like minus 23 degrees Celsius in my area. In one part of Minnesota yesterday they said it was minus forty, not Celsius, but Fahrenheit. 

Can you imagine what walking around in that weather is like? Give you a li’l example; yesterday evening I took my fresh self and went across the street to get the mail from the communal mail boxes, and would you believe that by the time I got back from the say twenty yards walk, two minutes exposure, I was coughing and hacking like nobody’s business. And the message for all you people down in the southland, where it’s always nice and warm, is please stay there! 

I know that plenty of you want to come a foreign because you believe that it’s so wonderful, but it’s not really as wonderful as you believe and your friends and family don’t just go out and pick up money from the street or the trees so that they can afford to send you all the setta money and expensive foolishness that you all ask for. If you don’t have a work down there, you can at least plant something and stay alive. Up here, if you don’t have a job, nobody gives you much of anything. 

And believe me, you have it real good down there yes. For when it rains you can call and tell the boss it raining, so you not coming to work. Up here though, in all the ice and snow yuh can’t call and tell them it snowing or too icy for you to come in, else most likely that’s the last phone call you’ll make to that number. You get my drift? (smile) 

And I recently saw a video that hit the nail on the head. This Jamaican fella, dressed to the hilt in his snow clothes pleading to his people back home not to send and ask for anything before March, and not the beginning of March, but the end, because it so and so cold, and he has to go out and work in it, and it not easy… so please doh send and beg for anything before the end of March! 

And I think that’s a very good idea for us to adopt because it really hard and unfair to the people up here working their tail of in the cold to send back money and stuff for their people lazing and lounging in the sunshine waiting for the big barrel to roll in or the call to go to Western Union! Steups! I guess by now you know my take on the situation; it’s totally ridiculous! I’m blessed I don’t have any family or friends who behave that way. Thank you yes Lord! 

And now that I’ve finished my rant, what’s next eh? (smile) And I think we’re going to talk a li’l about criticism today. Now Cousin Bobby (Bobby Schuller – Hour of Power Programme) says that ‘Criticism is training: a temporary opportunity for a permanent gift.’ And so it is, if you are wise enough to accept the criticism for whatever it’s worth. 

You’ll never get anywhere, be successful at anything without coming under some form of criticism, whether it be good or bad, and you need to develop a sense of resilience to it, if you want to truly succeed. Like someone else said: ‘To avoid criticism: Say nothing, do nothing, be nothing…’ So there you have the two options available; be damned if you do, and also be damned if you don’t! So what’s it going to be eh? 

As believers in Christ we’re expected to do and be damned! In other words roll with the punches, but get the job done. I don’t believe any of us will ever be criticized as much as Jesus was, and yet He persevered. Even His own family rejected His claim of being the Messiah. Look at how they treated Him in His hometown of Nazareth nuh. 

This Sabbath day He got up to read the scriptures in the synagogue there and read Isaiah 49:8-9 where he wrote: ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised (oppressed). To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.’ (Luke 4:18-19) Then He told them: ‘This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears (hearing).’ (Luke 4:21) 

And they were all filled with wonder at his wisdom, but then they reasoned: ‘Is not this Joseph’s son?’ (Luke 4:22b) And it all went downhill from there, especially when Jesus declared: ‘Verily, I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.’ And isn’t that the living truth! People of fame and success are much less appreciated in their own homes and hometowns than elsewhere in the world. 

And Jesus made it even worse by telling them about the three years and six months of famine in Israel in Elijah’s time, that though there were many widows in Israel at the time, he was sent to a widow in Sarepta (Zarephath) a city in Sidon, outside of Israel. He also told them about the many lepers in Israel at the time of Elisha, but only Naaman the Syrian was healed. (Luke 4:25-27) 

And the response to Jesus words? The Good Book says: And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath (rage), and rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong. But he passing through the midst of them went his way.’ (Luke 4:28-30) Can you imagine it my brethren, Jesus’ own people in His hometown of Nazareth, so enraged by His words, trying to cast Him over the nearby cliffs! 

Now I don’t think that many of us who want to work for Jesus will face such craziness, but we will face serious criticism from all around, even our friends and families, but like Jesus, please don’t let it stop us. Just imagine our position now nuh, if Jesus had succumbed to the overwhelming criticism that He faced in His three years of ministry! Now we’d be like crapaud done smoke we pipe! So let’s be strong and hang in there and do His work, so that we can be ultimately blessed with our Thursday Blessings. 

In strong voice and plenty faith, let’s declare (right ho) them: ‘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!’ 

Now it’s time to go out and share those wonderful blessings with the less fortunate! Much LOVE!

…to successfully work for Jesus…one must have plenty belly and backbone…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 November 2018 Matthew 7:20.

Matthew 7:20.   Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
 
Well friends let me begin by apologizing for the fiasco that was yesterday’s Bit. I don’t know how and why it really happened but it did, and consequently, in the header, I made the mistake of quoting the Bit as being from Job 17 instead of Job 27. But I do know that you, my astute and well-versed readers would have known exactly where it came from. (smile)

Please excuse the ole fella for that. But I just hate to make mistakes when writing about the Lord’s word. Oh I know He’s forgiven me, so in your godliness, I hope you will too. (smile) 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s turn to some quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he nobly aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Here is the first one, which says: ‘Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.’ And that’s oh so true. 

And it’s well encapsulated in a quote from a Rasta breddren who taught me history in High School eons ago. As he thoughtfully scratched his scraggly beard, with his brogued feet up on the desk, he would ask: ‘What is History? And why do we learn History?’ And His answers were: ‘History is a record of the past, and we learn it so we can understand the present and predict the future.’ 

And especially if you are child of God, you need to be continually questioning and learning and growing in the faith; hopefully moving from glory to glory, becoming more Christ-like everyday! 

And the second quote is like unto the first: (smile) ‘Everybody wants to be famous, but nobody wants to do the work. I live by that. You grind hard so you can play hard. At the end of the day, you put all the work in, and eventually it’ll pay off. It could be in a year, it could be in 30 years. Eventually, your hard work will pay of.’ 

Yeah friends, there are no serious rewards without serious work. As the Good Book says, you reap what you sow. And that’s gospel truth. You can’t put in a little work, or only plant a small crop and expect to reap huge rewards and harvest.

And it doesn’t matter how long you have to work hard before you reap those rewards and harvests either, for as the Lord said to the people of Judah through the prophet Azariah, when they were going through tough times: ‘Be ye strong therefore, and let not your hands be weak: for your work shall be rewarded.’ (2 Chr.15:7) 

And if you don’t believe that, then listen to Bruh David from Psalm 31: ‘O LOVE the Lord, all ye his saints: for the Lord preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth (fully repays) the proud doer.’ (Ps.31:23)

And if you still don’t believe that, (smile) then listen to Bruh Paul to Timothy: ‘For the scripture saith, thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn, and the labourer is worthy of his reward (wages).’ (1 Tim.5:17) So friends, whatever effort we put into our work, that is what we will gain from it. 

And all of that runs smoothly into our third and last quote: ‘The value of life is not in its duration, but in its donation. You are not important because of how long you live, you are important because of how effective you live.’ And wiser words were never spoken in that regard my people! 

Listen to this discourse of Jesus on the subject. ‘Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening (ravenous) wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil (bad) fruit.

A good tree cannot bring forth evil (bad) fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.’ (Matt.7:15-20) 

Yes my brethren, it’s ever so important how you live, not so much how long you live. And the longer you live, the more good fruit you are expected to bear in Jesus’ realm. And that good fruit must be exposed to the unbelievers so that they can see it and accept Christ themselves.

That’s why Christ also said that we are the salt and light of the earth, and we’re not supposed to hide our lights under a bushel, for what good is flavourless salt or a hidden light eh? None whatsoever! (Matt.5:13-15) 

And we’ll end with this oh so important admonishing of Jesus on that subject. ‘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) Now that friends, is what all we supposed Christians, believers and whatever we call ourselves are supposed to be about. 

But I don’t think we’re doing such a good job; we’re not bearing as much good fruit as we should, or being as flavourful and bright shining to the heathen world! And that’s why Jesus’ LOVE Revolution is faltering; why more people are seemingly leaving it, than joining it. And we just can’t have that my people! 

So today, I implore us to take a good look at ourselves and truly ruminate on the role we are playing in Jesus’ body, where we are falling down, because all of us have faults and foibles, and sincerely make the effort to do better. Let’s take it to God in prayer and ask for His help, for with God’s help, we can all do better! Much LOVE!

…truly living for Jesus means…being flavourful…a bright shining light…and producing good fruit…in this evil, corrupt world…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 September 2018 Deuteronomy 31:6.

Deuteronomy 31:6.   Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee.

And then it was the Tuesday after the Labour Day weekend; time to go back to school and work! And it seems like it’s going to be another hot, hazy and humid day in my neighbourhood. But we’ll take it, though some of the promised rain would be nice. However, we can’t blame the weather forecasters too much, because with the screwed up climate we have nowadays, their predictions can easily be thrown off. 

Anyway, today we’re going to talk about two words that play a very big part in our lives, both as normal humans and Christian believers. Those words are FEAR and COURAGE! First up are a couple of definitions of those words from Uncle Charles (Dr. Charles Stanley) Here’s what he says about Fear. 

‘Fear – An uneasy feeling, a feeling of dread…an internal alarm that goes off inside of us when we are feeling imminent danger; feel threatened, or feel helpless to avoid or change it.’ In other words, Fear seems to be a negative disposition; one that has us nervous and jittery, feeling weak, especially when we can’t do anything about the prevailing circumstances. 

As per Courage, Uncle Charles says: ‘Courage: The quality of mind or spirit enabling us to meet danger, face opposition, or the challenges of life with fearlessness, calmness and firmness.’ Courage then boosts us up, makes us strong, has us feeling we can do whatever it takes to meet a certain situation. 

But for whatever it’s worth, both of those emotions play a very large part in our lives. These days with our world in such a sorry state of war, resentment, anger, hate and strife, fear is very common and a frequent visitor to too many of us. And it takes a lot of courage to ignore that kind of stuff and move on with a positive and productive life. 

Now we all entertain fear at some time or other in our lives, but as Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say, we need to do it afraid. So courage isn’t necessarily not having fear, but also doing whatever we need to do while being fearful or afraid. 

And one of the first directives Moses gave to the Israelites when he was dying are the words contained in our Bit. ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee.’  

What a magnificent promise my brethren! And when the Israelites held to it, they were fine, and when they didn’t they suffered serious harm. And I’d like you to know that that promise still holds true even to this day, so many thousands of years later. 

And on the death of Moses, the Lord God Himself even reiterated it to Joshua after making him leader of the Israelites. ‘Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:9) 

That seems to intimate that followers of Jehovah God should not be afraid of anything or anyone that comes against them because their great, powerful and caring God is always with them wherever they may go. And that’s the indisputable truth friends: our omnipotent, omniscient and omni-present God is all over, all the time! His eyes are always on us, as He walks, before, behind and beside us. 

So there’s no need to fear. We can be sometimes anxious, but definitely not fearful. And if you don’t believe me, then listen to Jesus with the ultimate word on the situation. ‘Fear not little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’ (Luke 12:32) 

And Jesus was always cheering up His followers, advising them to have courage. Listen to him as He came walking on the water towards His scared disciples on the boat. ‘Be of good cheer (take courage); it is I; be not afraid.’ (Matt.14:27) 

And hear Him again when He tells them He’s going back to heaven and promises to send the Holy Spirit to comfort and guide them. ‘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) 

And later on He again warns them: ‘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 (take courage); I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) That’s the faithful promise of our Lord and Saviour, my people! Powerful words for us to hold on to securely and courageously live by! If you’re a true believer, that’s the ONLY way to live! 

And Bruh David adds his two cents worth (smile) ‘Wait (in faith) on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait (in faith), I say, on the Lord.’ (Ps.27:14) More invaluable advice my brethren! So please take it. But now it’s time to go home, and we’ll do so declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are. 

In strong voice with sincere hearts 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!’ 

So what are we waiting for eh? Let’s go out and do as we just declared. Much LOVE!

…faith in Jesus…that’s the only thing that will quench…fear of the world…

 

 

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 January 2018 2 Timothy 1:7.

2 Timothy 1:7.   For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.

And then it was Saturday…somewhat late in the day though, and many of you won’t notice, because like the ole fella you also slept in some. (smile) But what’s life eh, if once in a while you can’t sleep in and not be run ragged by the busyness of this insane world? The Lord’s LOVE, mercy, grace and forgiveness will still be there when we get up. 

Oh how wonderful is the God we serve and worship my brethren! He is always thinking about our welfare, so we need to be very thankful and grateful as we walk arm in arm with Him. And remember too, that NO ONE can separate us from Him, but us. And such a move on our part would be rather foolish. Nuff said. 

Let’s see what our friend Anselm has to say on this bleak and gloomy Saturday morning. First off, he tells us that ‘Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.’ 

I have serious doubts about that yes, because in this society there are oodles of people right now with lots of formal education, who can’t even get a job, much less earn a living. And if and when they do get one, the wage is definitely not in line with their standard of education. It’s surprising that in this supposed first-world economy, the number of university grads who are making minimum wage. 

And in my province of Ontario, at the beginning of the year, the government raised the minimum wage from eleven something to fourteen something, and as expected all the business people are up in arms, threatening all sorts of retribution. 

Some Tim Horton’s franchises have already cut back paid breaks, tips and stuff, taking away what little the employees already had, in their greedy desire to keep their profit margins high. So who knows, self-education might just be the answer. 

And I like this next quote. ‘If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves.’ That’s oh so true my fellow believers. I’m sure most of us have had that experience at some time(s) in our lives. 

Times when we actually buckled down and did stuff we had to do, and was surprised at the quality and quantity of work we accomplished because we had set our minds to it. Many of us never reach our full capability, because we’re either not challenged to, or we just settle for average results. 

That leads us to this quote. ‘Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.’ And there’s much truth in that advice, especially in these modern times, where a lot of supposed successful people add li’l or no value to the society. Check out the celebrity culture that currently rules the world. 

How many of them add anything worthwhile to the society eh? Not many. That’s a big reason why the world is in such a mess. So friends, in our lives, please let’s concentrate on adding value to our lives and our society. Value usually means success in the real world, but not necessarily the other way around. 

And finally Anselm tells us that ‘Fearlessness is like a muscle. I know from my own life that the more I exercise it, the more natural it becomes to not let my fears run me.’ There is indeed substance to that remark, because the more we practice not being afraid, the more we will learn to conquer fear. 

But the basic foundation for conquering fear comes from our association with Jesus Christ. That’s who gives us the strength and wisdom to conquer fear. Oh friends, throughout the Good Book there are numerous warnings about fear. And one of the most powerful is that found in our Bit; Bruh Paul’s admonition to Timothy. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ 

And that’s gospel truth friends! Our wonderful God has not given us a fearful spirit, we allow the enemy to put fear into our hearts. And all I want to do today is highlight a few scriptures where God warned us not to be afraid. And one of my favourites is the one He commanded Joshua, when He made him leader of the Israelites after Moses’ death. 

Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:9) Ah mih people, the Lord could not have been more explicit. 

Then in Isaiah, re the final restoration of Israel, He warns His people the same way. ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be thou not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’ (Is.41:10) 

Now hear one of the first ‘fear not’ instructions; that from Moses when the Israelites were preparing to leave Egypt. ‘And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation (deliverance) of the Lord, which he will show to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace (be quiet).’ (Ex.14:13-14) 

And so said, so was it done. The Lord drowned the Egyptians in the closing of the Red sea. And we’ll end with these words of Jesus as He talked about care and anxiety and seeking God’s kingdom above all else. ‘Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’ (Luke 12:32) 

And it is indeed the Lord’s desire to give us the kingdom, if we seek Him above all else. So friends, there is no need to fear man nor beast once we are walking hand in hand with our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Please, let’s therefore rid ourselves of all the unwanted and unnecessary fear that is secreted in our hearts, by giving it to God. That’s wisdom of untold proportions! Much LOVE!

…fear can only be conquered by faith…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 September 2017 Luke 12:32.

Luke 12:32.   Fear not little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 

And another one bites the dust…well possibly two! Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic have recently felt the wicked lash of hurricane Maria, and who knows where it’s going to land next. Meanwhile, they are still trying to come to terms with the earthquake in Mexico City… 

Ah mih people, these are certainly rough and tough, but also interesting times in the annals of mankind. How will we end up, what will our society look like after the devastation eh? 

Will it be more of the same evil, godlessness, or will a wiser, repentant and godlier society rise from the ashes of our calamity? Only God knows. And only time will tell. For all our sakes though, let’s hope our future is based sincerely on the latter option. 

But with all that misfortune going on, it still doesn’t stop the workingman from declaring his Friday anthem: ’TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and the weekend is finally here! Regardless of what’s happening in the rest of the world, we going to party hearty…eat, drink and be merry! 

For who knows, tomorrow, or even today we shall die! So bring on the good times, especially in this extra summer weather we getting here! Let the waters flow…the food pile up…and the music blast out! Thank God is Friday and we done work for another week!’ 

Oh friends, that is exactly the kind of attitude we’re trying to counteract. There’s nothing wrong with celebrating the end of the workweek, but the limits to which we go is another story. The workingman’s definitely goes overboard. A more sober and constructive one would be like our Friday Chant. 

So let’s chant it with nuff enthusiasm nuh! ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

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

Yeh mih breddren, to many of the young folks that might sound too retro for them, but it’s the kind of thing that the Lord desires; we enjoy His blessings, but keep our feet on an even keel so the enemy doesn’t get any leeway into our lives. 

And quite rightly, though we are all concerned about what’s happening worldwide, and also close to home, if we are living with and for Jesus then we should not be disturbed or blatantly afraid. 

For as He said, if we seek God’s kingdom as our priority, the Lord will satisfy all our needs. And as a lagniappe, or extra encouragement, Jesus tells us in our Bit: ‘Fear not little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’  

And if Jesus says it’s so, then it’s obviously so, for He has no reason whatsoever to lie or lead us astray. However, our natural sinful nature encourages fear much more than faith, so today we’re just going to concentrate on a few passages from God’s word on the subjects of fear and faith, beginning with this famous verse from Deuteronomy. 

‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee.’ (Deut.31:6) Oh my faithful followers of Jesus, our God can’t say it in any plainer language than that. 

But in Isaiah, He unfailingly repeats the promise, the invitation to partner with Him. ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’ (Is.41:10) 

And friends, if we truly believe the Lord of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the Creator and controller of the universe, then we should not have any problems believing His word. But my favourite verses on fear and faith come from God’s command to Joshua, when He made him leader of the Israelites after Moses’ death. 

‘This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shall meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. 

Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:8-9) 

And if that doesn’t grab you right in your heart my people, then I don’t know what will. But we’ll end with these uplifting words from Ethan, the Ezrahite from Psalm 89 – God’s sure promises to David. 

‘Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of thy countenance. In thy name shall they rejoice all the day: and in thy righteousness shall they be exalted. For thou art the glory of their strength: and in thy favour our horn (strength) shall be exalted. For the Lord is our defense; and the Holy One of Israel is our king.’ (Ps.89:15-18) 

That’s for certain sure my fellow believers in Christ. Now let’s stand strong as soldiers of Christ, and fight the good fight of faith, as He desires of us nuh! Much LOVE!

…one can only stand strong…if one is bolstered by faith…and not debilitated by fear…

 

 

 

 

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