Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 July 2019 Hebrews 10:23.

Hebrews 10:23.    ​Let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)
 

Oh brother, I can’t believe it’s Thursday already nuh! The week’s flying by so fast, it gets sorta blurry! (smile) And was yesterday ever a strange sorta day. In my area we had intermittent periods of sun and rain, until in the early evening hours the sun finally prevailed. But Toronto seemed to be completely different. They apparently had long periods of steady rain that resulted in severe flooding in several areas. 

And today it looks cloudy out there again, plus I’ve got to go into the city for a doctor’s appointment. What a life! But what to do eh? Nothing but put our sincere trust and hope in Jesus and believe that He will do as promised; meet all our needs through His riches in glory. (Phil.4:19) That’s what our faith is all about people, and it’s in times of adversity and trouble that we need it to show up in large amounts. 

Consequently, I want to share two interesting and reassuring quotes. The first one is comprised of these wise words reputedly attributed to Grady Nutt (1934-1982) a Southern Baptist minister. It says: ‘God should be a resource in the struggle, not a way around it.’ 

And is that ever so true my fellow believers. We ought to use God to help us get through the adversity rather than as a way to get around it. But in these days of easy and comfortable living, no one wants to go through anything, we all want to avoid, to go around it. But the truth is that it’s only when we go through stuff with God that we really grow and mature in our faith. 

And the second quote is from a Daily Bread Devotional footnote that dispenses these words of wisdom: ‘The best reason for hope is God’s faithfulness.’ Oh my people, my people, that is indeed gospel truth! Our God is so wonderfully faithful that there’s nothing we can’t face when we place our hope and trust in Him! All praise and glory be to Him, my faithful brethren! If we were even one smidgen as faithful as our great God, what amazing changes would take place in our troubled world! 

That brings us to these intriguing and most interesting, uplifting and reassuring words of scripture found in the Book of Hebrews. ‘And having a high priest (Jesus) over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)’ (Heb.10:21-23) 

Oh friends, if there’s anything I can personally testify to it’s God’s faithfulness, because that’s the only way that I can write this Bit everyday. He called me to do it, and without His faithful help to do His work, I’d be lost without a prayer and /or a hope. But through His faithfulness, His guidance and assurance, I come down here every morning, not knowing what I’m going to write about most days, but eventually write more than I can ask or imagine. 

Like today, I only had the beginning and the end, absolutely nothing in the middle. But look at how much I’ve written. And most of the time it does make sense. (smile) And those of you who are mature in faith know what I’m talking about, because you’ve put in the time and effort and patience and waiting and seen Him work wonders on your behalf. 

For you young believers though, you just have to take our word for it and go up to bat assuredly with your great God, for that’s the only way you’ll ever discover His true faithfulness. You’ve got to go through the fire with Him and experience Him bringing you out like the three Hebrew Boys, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, without even the smell of smoke on you. (Dan.3:27) 

Yes mih people, faith and faithfulness are works in progress, you’ll never stop needing them and having to grow in them until the day you go over to the other side. And don’t think that just because you seem mature in faith that you’ve conquered it all nuh, because the more you grow in faith and get promoted, the more the Lord will test you. 

Oh we don’t want to hear that, but it’s an unavoidable fact. We like to think that once we reach a certain level, we’ll free from all temptations and tests and troubles, but Bruh Paul’s words to the Philippians seem to contradict that. ‘Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.1:6) 

So friends, that seems to mean until we die or Christ comes back we’ll be growing and becoming more Christ-like every day. That’s the Lord’s plan, and once He begins it, He won’t stop until we go home to Him, so we’d better be prepared to face adversity and negative stuff throughout our lifetime. And the best way to do that is through hope, faith, trust and surrender in Almighty God. 

As Cousin Sol so wisely puts it: ‘Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.’ (Prov.3:5-6) There’s no wiser advice in all the world my brethren, so please let’s take it to heart as we go home declaring (yeh!) our Thursday Blessings. Out loud now, because a blessing is not truly a blessing until it’s declared. 

‘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 every Thursday I have to warn us that those blessings are not granted for us to selfishly hoard, but to generously share with the less fortunate, with those who don’t know Christ. So let’s go out and do just that nuh, and thus warm the cockles of Jesus’ heart. Much LOVE!

…you can’t have faith without hope…and hope is that which springs eternal from God…

 

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Today​’s Scrip-Bit 20 March 2019 Philippians 1:6.

Philippians 1:6.   ​Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.
 
‘It’s spring! It’s spring! Springtime is here! Thank God it’s spring!’ Hn, hn, hn! Yeh friends, the Spring Equinox has finally reached the North Country, but please don’t be deceived by the ebullient nature of that statement because that’s just man’s calendar. Mother Nature however, doesn’t hold to man’s demarcation of time, she does her own thing, so the temps will not always be above freezing, and some of that white stuff is possible in the next month or so.  

And having set the record straight on that topic, let’s move on to this interesting poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, titled ‘What is Your Schedule, God?’ The first time I read it, I had to laugh because it applies so appropriately to my present position and no doubt to some of you readers also. 

So please pray with me: ‘Lord Many years ago Martin Luther King said “It is God’s nature To make something out of nothing. That is why God cannot make anything Out of him who is not yet nothing.” In ways I had never anticipated, Lord Slowly but persistently You continue Your hammering and crushing In every hidden crevice of my life. 

You seem determined To reduce me to nothing In order to make something. I wonder… What is Your schedule, God? As You creatively continue To reshape and remake me How long will it last? Lord, could You hurry a little’ 

My sentiments exactly my people! It’s taking a rather long time for Him to complete His renovations in me! Oh I know that I will be a much better person, both physically and spiritually when He’s done, but did I need so much work, that it’s taking so long? (smile) I guess He seems to think so. And He’s the Boss, the Renovator, so there’s not much I can do but grin and bear it, knowing that He’s faithfully promised that He eventually will work out all things for our good. 

Even the bad stuff, He’ll make eventually work in our favour. And there’s also this other important and incomparable promise found in the Bible verse for today’s poem, which is also our Bit for today. In the immortal words of Bruh Paul to the Philippians: ‘Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ 

Ah mih people, our God is not a wishy-washy deity, who just does things vikey-vie, but an outstanding and upstanding Father figure who has an airtight plan and completes what He begins! That means that though I’ve been going through some rough times as He renovates me, and it seems to be taking a rather long time, I can yet be assured that he will finish those renovations in His own timing. 

We all know that His timing and ours very seldom coincide; (smile) we want it done now for now, but He’s in no rush whatsoever. That’s why He gives us His powerful grace to bear up under such tough and unwanted conditions. 

Now hear what the scholars say about our Bit. ‘1:6. Will perform it is said “will finish it.” Paul is convinced that the work of grace that God began in the Philippians at conversion will be divinely continued until the day of Jesus Christ. That is, the Lord will keep working in these believers until Jesus returns to earth, at which point He will finish His work, bringing it to completion. This speaks of the Christian’s eternal security. For God had a purpose in view when He began His saving work in the Philippians, and that purpose will neither be abandoned nor unrealized.’ 

Give our great God some thanks and praise my brethren, because He also has a purpose in saving us, and that purpose will neither be ‘abandoned nor unrealized!’ Wow! You can bet your bottom dollar on that! The Lord will continue working in and on each of us until Jesus comes back to claim His birthright! Isn’t that good news? Yes, it sure is wonderful news, to know that our heavenly Father is on the ball, even though we may not like what His work entails in our earthly days. 

But we’ve just got to hang on to those promises of His, the many promises found in His awesome Word, like those above and like He’ll never leave nor forsake us, will always comfort us, give us beauty for ashes, joy for mourning, keep us safe under His mighty wings from the always lurking enemy and life’s inevitable storms, just like a mother hen protects her chicks! And the list goes on and on my faithful followers of Christ! 

Remember, we are partners in this life with our Maker; that means He has a part to do, and we also have our part to do. And as Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say: ‘God will not do our part, and we can’t do His part, though we often try to!’ And that’s gospel truth friends! So our part of the covenant is to hold on tightly to the promises of the Almighty, and walk obediently to His will, regardless of the circumstances, and just let Him get on with His renovation and renewal of our lives. 

Remember His thoughts and ways are higher than ours and a thousand days in His sight is like one in ours, so we will very seldom see eye to eye. (smile) But all will turn out well if we just believe and hold steadfast to His Word! It’s not always easy to do, but He’s also given us the grace and the help of His Holy Spirit do it. So let’s stop complaining and just get with the programme nuh! Jesus didn’t have it easy, so why should we have it so eh? No reason whatsoever! 

So let’s smarten up, and with the Lord’s strength and joy in our hearts, let’s go home declaring (steups – wrong again) our Wednesday Wail, telling the whole world our wonderful and enviable position in the Lord Jesus Christ, our most wonderful Leader and Saviour! 

Altogether 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 please remember, that future will be even more glorious than we can think or imagine! Way to go mih people! Much LOVE!

…a house built on sand will not stand…but one built on the rock that’s Jesus…will surely last forever…

P.S. Yuh see what happens when you all get the ole fella excited…he just keeps on writing…(smile)  Much LOVE!

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 April 2018 Proverbs 1:33.

Proverbs 1:33.    But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet (secure, at ease) from fear of evil.

One more morning…one more Monday… to go out and face the cold, cruel and evil world! Or would you rather not be around to face it eh, have your picture staring back at you from the obits instead? (smile) Definitely not! Most of us would vote for seeing another Monday morning though they seem to cause us constant distress. 

That’s possibly because what awaits us on the other side of the river appears to be so grand, too good to be true, and nobody has ever come back from there and told us the real story.  So until we just can’t help it, do otherwise, we’ll stay on this side of the river, unhappily accepting the hell we know, instead of the heaven we don’t.  

But friends, we ought to believe God’s Word because it is true. So if He says a wonderful life awaits us on the other side, why doubt it eh? As we saw yesterday the Bible, though actually written by men, was inspired by God, and one truth from it is greater than the wisdom of all mankind. Anyway, we still on this side, (smile) and we still have Monday to get through, so let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn to help us get started nuh. 

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!’ 

Yeh friends, I know our pulses are beating a little faster and the adrenaline is now swiftly coursing through our bodies, so let’s get a move on before we lose the rush nuh. (smile) And today we’re going to continue talking about the great and wonderful promises of God. 

And the first one today is our Bit; wise and holy inspiration of God to Cousin Sol. ‘But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet (secure, at ease) from fear of evil.’ A promise of absolute truth my people! When we listen to God and obey Him, we are not afraid when evil comes against us. Why? 

Because as Jesus told His disciples and consequently promised us: ‘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) Wow! What a promise! Exactly what we need in this evil, confused, hateful, ungodly and angry world. And it’s available to whosoever wants it. 

All you have to do is to accept Jesus’ Great Invitation: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt.11:28-30) 

Glory be my breddren! How can you beat that promise eh? No way Jose! And if yuh still having doubts, then try this promise for size. The inspired words of Bruh Paul to the Philippians, after letting them know that he’s been praying for them from the first day that they received Christ. ‘Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.1:16) 

Yeh friends, whatever God begins in us, He will complete it, or keep it going until Jesus returns. There are no if, ands, or buts about that! And we going to end with some more of Bruh Paul’s wise and inspirational words, this time as he talks to the Roman church about life in the Spirit. 

‘Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He 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.8:30-32)  

Oh precious people,  if God, gave up His only Son to save us, and if we are obediently following Christ, then God will obviously be on our side. And once He’s with us, NO ONE, or NOTHING can come successfully against us, because God and any one of us constitutes a majority in any situation.  Let’s remember that so we can live it too nuh. More on God’s awesome promises tomorrow, if He wants it that way. Much LOVE!

…God’s promises were never made to be broken…but for each and every one to be fulfilled…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 July 2017 Philippians 1:6

Philippians 1:6.   Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.

Ah friends, it’s the best day of the week – Sunday –the Sabbath of the Lord! That means it’s time for worship and praise and thanksgiving and fellowship, so that we can glorify our heavenly Father together and receive His endless LOVE, grace, mercy and forgiveness in a renewal of our spiritual strength and well-being! Wow! 

And what better way to begin our day than with a song of praise. So please sing with me, this old but highly treasured hymn, ‘Holy, Holy, Holy.’ Let’s raise the roof with our sincere and heartfelt praise, so that heaven stands up and takes notice. 

‘Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty! Early in the morning our song shall rise to thee; holy, holy, holy! merciful and mighty, God in three persons, blessed Trinity! Holy, holy, holy! All the saints adore thee, casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea; cherubim and seraphim falling down before thee, who wert and art and evermore shalt be. 

Holy, holy, holy! Though the darkness hide thee, though the eye made blind by sin thy glory may not see, only thou art holy; there is none beside thee, perfect in power, in love, and purity. Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty! All thy works shall praise thy name, in earth and sky and sea; holy, holy, holy! merciful and mighty, God in three persons, blessed Trinity!’ 

Yes my brethren, a most appropriate way to get us clearly tuned into our God, with no static buzzing around to distort the message, ready to hear His word and consequently have His Holy Spirit move in a godly manner within us. 

And from Gramps Schuller’s (Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional comes this prayer titled ‘MY WALK.’ I might have shared it before, but what’s to stop us from sharing it again eh? (smile)  

Please pray with me. ‘O God, I’m inspired, for you have just impressed this truth into my mind. The most powerful force in the world is a positive idea in the mind of a believer who is walking in your will! I now reach forth my life and say, “God, put my life into the centre of your will.” Amen.’

 Now I do hope we all mean that friends, because there’s really nothing as powerful as a positive idea in the mind of an obedient follower of Christ! And if we’re truly sincere, God will put just such an idea into our minds and cause us to successfully run with it, right to the finish line. 

Now most likely whatever God puts in our minds to do won’t be easy, but we know that He will ALWAYS assist us in any task we undertake on His behalf! 

No wonder Bruh Paul could write to the Philippians: ‘I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy. For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now.  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.1:3-6) 

Yes my fellow believers, Bruh Paul is letting the Philippians know that he continually thanks God for their help in spreading the good news of Christ, even from the very first day that they heard it, right up until the time of his writing. He was also grateful for their prayers and financial support. The church at Philippi was a strong one early on in its formation. Thus Bruh Paul could write the words of our Bit, confident that they would grow and mature under the Lord’s tutelage and guidance. 

And the scholars offer these explanations. ‘1:6. Will perform it is said “will finish it.” Paul is convinced that the work of grace that God began in the Philippians at conversion will be divinely continued until the day of Jesus Christ. That is, the Lord will keep working in these believers until Jesus returns to earth, at which point He will finish His work, bringing it to completion. 

This speaks of the Christian’s eternal security. For God had a purpose in view when He began His saving work in the Philippians, and that purpose will neither be abandoned nor unrealized.’ 

Now friends, doesn’t that just give us encouragement and reassurance, since it’s the same programme the Lord has in mind for each believer. His avowed desire and purpose is to conform us as closely as possible to His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and once He’s begun that process, He won’t stop until He takes us home or Christ returns to earth, whichever comes first. 

Please remember my Christian brethren that God is ever-faithful, and once He takes you under His comforting wings, He’ll never let anything untoward happen to you. In other words, we are secure in His everlasting LOVE, care and concern. 

And Bruh Paul ends this section with more reinforcement. ‘And this I pray, that your LOVE may abound yet more and more in knowledge and judgement (discernment): That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ. Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.’ (Phil.1:9-11) 

Oh my people, the same expectations have been set in place for us in these modern times. Nothing has really changed. God’s plan is still the same for all of us. 

And the scholars explain. 1:10. Things that are excellent means “things that really matter.” This refers to important issues. As the Philippians’ LOVE increases in knowledge and discernment (v.9), they will be able to accurately distinguish the vital and worthwhile things in life from those that are not. 

Contextually, the readers’ LOVE for Paul vexes them as they are anxious over his imprisonment. He wants them to perceive his imprisonment as being among “those things that really matter” because of the good that God will bring out of it. The purpose for such discrimination is that ye may be sincere (or, morally pure) and without offense till the day of Christ.’ 

And re ‘1:11. This verse could be translated, “Filled with the fruit that is righteousness, which comes through Jesus Christ for the purpose of glorifying and praising God.” The believer who is pure and without offense before God (v.10) has divinely developed in him a practical “righteousness” or daily moral life that measures up to God’s standards in character and conduct. The ultimate purpose for this “righteousness” is to glorify God.’ 

Ah friends, that says it all. So let’s ponder what we’ve said today and see if we’re measuring up to God’s standards, then sincerely ask Him to help us do better. That’s both common sense and eternal wisdom! Much LOVE!

…without exception…believers are expected to bear righteous fruit…for the purpose of glorifying Almighty God…