Today’s Scrip-Bit   20 December 2021 Psalm 60:11.

Psalm 60:11.     Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man. 

Come on friends, time to roll out and get on with the Monday morning show! The real winter season seems to be finally here, with temps now consistently in the minus category, that means we need to give ourselves some extra time to warm up the cars and ourselves. We can’t be late for work…Jesus was never late for anything, (smile) and as His ambassadors we need to aim for the same heights of diligence and excellence. And I’m only partially joking, because Jesus does want His people to be upstanding and excellent representatives of His kingdom. 

On the other hand though, the traffic might not be as bad as it normally is, since a lot of people might be returning to work from home situations, or have no work at all, because of the new Covid-19 regulations handed down this past week, in an effort to stem the crazy spread of the Omicron variant, which they say might not be as dangerous as its forerunners, but spreads more quickly than them. Whatever our situation though my brethren, we must all be diligent and aware and take the necessary precautions to keep us safe, because this virus doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon, what with all the confusion and disagreement over what it is and how to stem its tide. 

But on an interesting note, a little while ago I was looking through the psalms for something to talk about today and hit upon what I believe is a rather appropriate comparison to our current situation. It’s a situation found in Psalm 60 – A prayer for help against the foe. It seems while Bruh David was doing battle in the north, other enemies attacked in the south, so he had to split up his army and send his mighty warrior Joab to deal with the situation down there. And these were some of the words Bruh David voiced. ‘O God, thou hast cast us off, thou hast scattered (broken) us, thou hast been displeased; O turn thyself to us again (restore us again). (Ps. 60:1) 

And there is ample reason to believe that God is very displeased with us right now and has left us to fight our battles on our own as we so adamantly desired. What with all the sinfulness, ungodliness, irreverence and blasphemy raging all over the world, why should that surprise us. And Bruh David continues: ‘Thou hast made the earth to tremble; thou hast broken it: heal the breaches thereof; for it shaketh.’ (Ps. 60:2) 

Now there is absolutely no doubt that the Lord has made the earth to tremble in the last few years. Please note the unusual amount of earth trembling and shattering things like earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes and tornadoes during that time, and also the unusual intensity of them all. And only through God’s mighty hand can the resulting breaches be healed. 

But I like the next verse, as Bruh David shows his prowess also with words. He says: ‘Thou hast showed thy people hard things: thou hast made us to drink the wine of astonishment (staggering).’ (Ps. 60:3) Oh friends, has the Lord ever showed us hard things and made us to drink the wine of astonishment! So many tough situations have come upon us recently, not to mention the ongoing Covid virus pandemic, the numerous strife-filled areas of our world, with more coming on board every day. 

Don’t talk about the famines and droughts, the economic disasters, the worldwide poverty in the face of untold wealth and all the inhumanity we are showing to each other. I don’t know if there’s ever been a time when the saying, ‘man’s inhumanity to man makes countless thousands mourn,’ has ever been truer. 

And I know that many of us don’t think that the Lord has anything to do with the terrible state our world is currently experiencing, but I think that’s a fool’s wisdom. He might not be causing some of the disasters, but He’s surely not putting forth His hand to help us the way we expect Him to. And what else can we expect when we don’t reverence Him and obey His commandments eh, but are instead desperately trying to rid our society of His name and memory? 

But yuh know what, Bruh David despite all his problems and his laments over them, knew exactly on which side his bread was buttered, on the Lord’s side. That’s why he ended the psalm thus. ‘Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man. Through God we shall do valiantly: for he it is that shall tread down our enemies.’ (Ps. 60:11-12) And that’s the indisputable truth my fellow saints! Only God can right our world, and only if we acknowledge that He is our Creator and Controller, our God and heavenly Father, the One and Only True and Living God! 

What will it take for us to discover and acknowledge that our bread is buttered on His side eh? Look at the mess man has made and is still making of the world. Are we going to continue to put our trust in man’s evil ways, his greed and perfidy? That’s his deceptive ways, his duplicity and inability to keep promises. I certainly hope not. So, since there’s no time like the present to begin the turnaround, let’s go to fountain of life, that’s God, for help through prayer nuh, sincerely voicing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

Altogether now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems.  

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now if we are serious and want positive answers to our prayers, then we must keep our promises, else the Lord will just ignore us. Much LOVE!

…to God be the glory…for His goodness to the children of men…who don’t seem to want or appreciate it…                                                                                                                                                           

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 January 2021 Jeremiah 13:15.

Jeremiah 13:15.     Hear ye, and give ear, be not proud for the Lord hath spoken. 

Oh mih people, it’s Saturday! Wow! Already? And if you’re reading this, then it means that you have opened two of the most precious gifts man can ever receive; we talking about your eyes. (smile) 

Oh friends, what a beautiful universe our great God has created, with mankind as its top exhibition! And if yuh believe that, then shout a loud, proud and grateful ‘Amen!’ Yes my brethren, let’s give thanks and praise to Almighty God for all the wonderful things He’s done, is doing and has promised to do for us nuh, for without Him we’re nothing! 

And as they say, if you’re alive, you have plenty to be thankful for. And if you have food, clothing and shelter, then you’re more blessed than most of the world. And if you also have a LOVING family and good friends, then you’re blessed like a mighty child of God! Glory be! 

So let’s not waste any time this day moaning and begroaning whatever unfortunate circumstance(s) that might have come our way nuh, for if we’re children of the Most High God then we know that they have not come to stay, that they too will eventually pass away and leave us stronger in body, soul, spirit and mind, for that’s the way our heavenly Father has set it up. Give Him a much deserved round of applause nuh mih bredrin! 

And I guess, by now you have deduced that there are still no quotes from our friend Anselm. Sorry to say it, but that’s the truth. Don’t know what’s happened to him, like he just dropped off the face of the earth. Hope that he’s all right though. Please say a word of prayer for him, just in case he’s in trouble. 

And while we’re doing that, let’s also remember these fateful words of the Lord to His people of Judah through the prophet Jeremiah, when they were revelling in disobedience and ungodliness, just like our society is doing right now. 

‘Hear ye, and give ear, be not proud for the Lord hath spoken. Give glory to the Lord your God, before he cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and while ye look for light, he turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness.’ (Jer. 13:15-16) 

Oh friends, that warning is so apropos for us in these trying and troubled times that we need to pay instant heed to it. For many of us are already stumbling in the darkness of sin, disobedience and doubt, and many are going through the valley of the shadow of death because of it. The corona pandemic isn’t helping us any either, just adding to our concerns. 

So why aren’t we listening to the voice, the divine warning of our heavenly Father eh? Is it because we’re too proud to ask for help, or because we think we are the rulers of the universe and we know what we’re doing and nobody must tell us anything? Hn! What foolishness! 

Why would we think such a stupid thing eh? Can any of us define our times or do anything to stop them? No! So why do we still insist on thinking of ourselves more highly than we truly are eh? 

Now hear how Jeremiah continues with the Lord’s words. ‘But if ye will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret places for your pride; and mine eye shall weep sore, and run down with tears, because the Lord’s flock is carried away captive.’ (Jer. 13:17) 

Yes, the Lord will weep and be sorrowful for our demise, but being a God of justice and righteousness, He must band His belly and punish sin, like He had to do when Jesus died for us. And oh my people, are we ever proud and haughty in these days of the modern technological revolution! 

We think we’re the cat’s pajamas! But in fact we’re not. We’re still God’s creation, and still beholden to Him for everything we have, receive or do! So listen to this explanation from the scholars on those verses above. 

‘13:15-17. A third illustration (in the series of God’s warnings to Judah) concerns a weary traveller in danger of being overtaken by the falling darkness of night. Such was Judah. It must renounce all pride and give God His rightful glory before the final darkness of national catastrophe engulfs it.’ 

Oh my people, my people, what’s wrong with our minds eh? We claim to be the wisest civilization ever, but still, we turn away from our Creator with blasphemy, vehemence and downright cursing, and we yet expect to prosper forever? Hn! What fools we are my friends! 

The Lord LOVES us like a real Father, but also, like a real father He’s not going to let us get away with sin and willful disobedience forever. Remember, He’s given us free choice for a reason, to test our true LOVE for Him. And believe me, we have been tested and found sadly wanting. 

Now a lot of people are claiming that we’re in the last days, the days before Jesus’ return, and they just might be, because many of the signs He spoke about that would herald His Second coming are currently playing out. But who knows just when that will be? Only the Father Himself! (Matt. 24:36) 

But be assured that the last days are much closer than they have ever been. (smile) Remember too, Jesus’ warning about Him coming like a thief in the night. (Matt. 24:43) And in Revelation: ‘Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.’ (Rev. 16:15) 

Yes friends, Jesus’ Second Coming will be an unexpected affair, therefore we must take His warning very seriously. ‘Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.’ (Matt. 24:44) 

Oh my fellow believers, I think those are very fitting words to leave us with this Saturday morning in this troubled year of 2021. Please, let’s ponder them seriously and make the appropriate decisions nuh. That’s wisdom at its zenith! Much LOVE!

…watch ye…watch ye and pray…watch ye and pray… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 July 2018 Mark 12:29.

Mark 12:29.   And Jesus answered him, The first (foremost) of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; the Lord our God is One Lord:

                                  HAPPY  BIRTHDAY  CANADA !

Yeh friends, today is officially Canada’s 151st birthday, but we’ll talk about it tomorrow, when the Big Bang really happens. (smile) But just remember to follow Granny’s advice: Sonny boy, drunk or sober, please mind yuh business. Words of absolute wisdom my brethren! 

And my humblest apologies for the Bit being this late, but as the old people would say, what ent meet you, ent pass you. (smile) Now thank the Lord, I don’t usually have headaches, but I had a truly disgusting one this morning. I couldn’t even move my head without it feeling like it wanted to explode. I haven’t had anything like that in years. 

Steups! And I definitely didn’t want to venture writing the Bit under those less than positive circumstances. So I just took a couple of extra strength Tylenol and went to lie down. I didn’t even go to church. But I do have a new empathy for those who suffer with constant headaches, especially migraines. I guess the Lord felt I was having things a li’l too easy nuh. (smile) 

Anyway, enough pity party chatter, let’s get on with our Sunday morning, or rather afternoon proceedings. And as usual we’ll open with a song of praise to soften our stone hard hearts and make them more receptive to God’s word. And today’s ditty is taken from the old musical Godspell (1971), supposedly based on the Gospel of Matthew. 

It’s a song composed by Stephen Schwartz, one we’ve heard a thousand times down through the ages, but really haven’t paid much attention to – at least I haven’t, until I heard it this past week on commercial radio and had to check it out to see if the lyrics I heard were truly true. And by gosh, they were! 

That’s why we can now belt out the song ‘Day by Day’ with much gusto and heartfelt sincerity. As one earthly choir, sounding like a heavenly one though, (smile) let’s sing: ‘(Slow) Day by day, Day by day, oh, dear Lord, three things I pray: To see thee more clearly, LOVE thee more dearly, Follow thee more nearly, day by day 

(Chorus (fast) Day by day, day by day Oh, dear Lord, three things I pray: To see thee more clearly, LOVE thee more dearly, Follow thee more nearly, day by day Day by day, day by day, by day, by day. (Slow) Day by day, Day by day, oh, dear Lord, three things I pray: To see thee more clearly, LOVE thee more dearly, Follow thee more nearly, day by day (Chorus (fast)… Day by day, day by day, by day, by day…. Day by day, day by day, by day, by day…’ 

Yes friends, the words aren’t plentiful, and are somewhat repetitive, (smile) but you can’t find a better prayer than that anywhere! We’re only asking for three things: to see the Lord more clearly, LOVE Him more dearly, and follow Him more nearly… Wow! If we could only get those three things, we’d be in seventh heaven, doing exactly the things the Lord desires of us, the things He created us for! Would there ever be great joy and peace on earth! Hn! 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘And Jesus answered him, The first (foremost) of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; the Lord our God is One Lord: And thou shalt LOVE the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first (foremost) commandment.’ (Mark 12:29-30)  

Yes my brethren, that was Jesus’ answer to the question one of the scribes asked Him, one day when He was holding forth on the topic of resurrection, trying to trip Him up, and thus find reason to accuse Him of blasphemy or some other foolish crime. 

But Jesus, as usual was too much for those hypocritical fools. If they had believed Him, they would have realized that He wrote the Good Book and thus knew all the answers. But such is man’s foolish pride, that he figures he knows everything, when in actual fact he knows nothing whatsoever! 

And as the scholars explain: ‘12:29. See Deuteronomy 6:4. These are the opening words of the Shema, the Jewish call to worship. They establish the basis of LOVE for God in the fact of God’s being the Lord our God, the God who has covenanted to redeem us to Himself.’ 

Yes my brethren, those were the words Moses spoke unto Israel when he gave them the Great Commandment, warned them that they were to worship ONE absolute God!  Logically speaking, there couldn’t be more than one, Supreme Being, else there would be no absolute, and thus oodles of confusion. 

And please notice the meaning of the word ‘Shema’, the first word in Hebrew: ‘HEAR!’ That’s what Moses was trying to drive home to the people when he gave them that message. And it’s what I am trying to drive home to us today my faithful followers of Christ: ‘Hear! Listen!’ so that we too can obey it, as well as the continuation of Moses’ message. 

‘And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.’ (Deut.6:6-9) 

And NOTHING has changed since then friends and fellow believers: we are still supposed to do all those things…as well as the Second Great Commandment that Jesus added: ‘And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.’ (Mark 12:31) 

And to tell the truth, that wasn’t even Jesus invention at that time, because Moses had already told the Israelites in Leviticus: ‘Thou shalt not avenge (take vengeance), nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.’ (Lev.19:18) 

What more can I say eh friends…nothing really. It’s all spelt out there for us. We must now use wisdom and accept and action it. Much LOVE!

…only two things are really asked of us in this earthly life…LOVE the Lord our God…and our neighbours as ourselves…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 July 2017 James 1:19.

James 1:19.   Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.

Oh friends, I’m so glad to be alive, especially on such a wonderful summer’s morn that I just wanted to jump for joy, click my heels, and shout ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ 

But fortunately, the wise One that dwells within me immediately cautioned that the first two actions would be somewhat foolhardy, given my precarious physical state. So I simply shouted ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ (smile) 

What a bam bam it is when your body can’t keep up with your mind eh? But them’s the breaks! It’s what happens when you’ve lived a long and productive life and have finally reached the winter years. So we just have to grin and bear it. 

And with Jesus Christ in our lives, there are so many other pleasures for us to enjoy than just the physical ones, that we really lack for nothing. All glory to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

And let me apologize now for the lateness of the Bit. It seems that the pain medication I took before going to bed this morning also has some sleep inducing properties, which made it difficult to get up at an earlier hour. 

Now here is a li’l something, which I shared way back when, but is still very useful in these trying times. It’s from Sholem Asch (1880-1957), a London born dramatist and writer of Polish-Jewish background, who later settled in the U.S. 

He tells us that: ‘Not the power to remember, but the power to forget is a necessary condition for our existence.’ 

And that’s quite true mih breddren, otherwise our minds would be so riddled with memories, and mostly the bad ones too, that our lives would be even more confused that they already are. 

But thankfully many of us old fogies don’t have to worry about that condition of life, because in our advanced stage we automatically forget most things anyway. (smile) 

And though it’s convenient to forget, we have to remember to follow the critical command and warning of our Bit, even in old age. ‘Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.’ 

And why is that you ask? Listen to James’ explanation that follows. ‘For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.’ (James 1:20) Yeh friends, uncontrolled anger and speaking have no place in the Christian’s life, because they lead us to ungodly decisions and consequently harsh repercussions. 

Hear the scholars take on those verses. ‘1:19. This is a key verse because it expresses three topics that James develops later: hearing, verses 19-27; speaking, 3:1-12; and wrath, 4:1-12.’ 

‘1:20. Trials require silence and patience because talk inflames anger, and anger inflames talk. Anger also distracts from listening to God.’ 

There you have it friends, several good reasons for controlling talk and anger! And I guess it’s only right for us to continue listening to James on the subject of hearing. 

‘Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity (abundance) of naughtiness (wickedness), and receive with meekness the engrafted (implanted) word, which is able to save your souls. (James 1:21) 

And the scholars offer an interesting explanation to that verse. ‘1:21. Engrafted word might better be translated “implanted word” and may reflect Christ’s parable of the seed planted in the four different soils (Matt. 13:3-9). Both Christ and James focus on the proper hearing of God’s Word (Matt.13:13, 19-20, 22-23). 

One needs to hear that Word, for it is able to save your souls. Though the phrase accurately describes the Word’s work of producing initial salvation, it is better in this context to understand it as the Word’s ability to preserve and mature the Christian’s life through trials.’ 

So anyway we cut it people, God’s Word is of the utmost importance in a believer’s life; both for producing our initial salvation and then keeping us on that straight and narrow path which allows us to grow in faith and trust in our wonderful Creator. Praise the Lord for His wonderful Word that leads and guides us safely on our earthly pilgrimage! 

And it isn’t coincidence that Bruh Paul wrote some of those same things to the Colossians. ‘But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. 

Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond (slave) nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.’ (Col.3:8-11) 

Yeh friends, the believer is called to a much higher standard of living than the great unwashed. (smile) And hear Bruh Paul again agreeing with James on the power and benefits of the Word. 

This while preaching at Antioch. ‘Men and brethren, children (sons) of the stock (family) of Abraham, and whosoever among you feareth God, to you is the word of this salvation sent.’ (Acts.13:26) 

My people, I implore us, to never forget that! Consequently, we can go home now truthfully and sincerely declaring our Wednesday Wail. ‘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!’ 

Let’s do it for Jesus nuh mih people! Much LOVE!

…a Christian’s earthly life contains difficulties…but the rewards of heaven…especially Jesus’ eternal company… totally compensate for them…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 April 2017 2 Peter 2:2.

2 Peter 2:2.   And many shall follow their pernicious (destructive) ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of (blasphemed).

Oh friends, we constantly talk about the many wonders of nature, but oftimes forget its eccentricities! And I have a perfect example of that. 

Yesterday the rain fell around here all day, and not mere drizzles, but strong, steady showers. I even got caught in it going to and from the heart clinic in afternoon. It just went on and on, with the wind wailing and howling like crazy. 

Now at minutes to three this morning, on my way to bed, I opened my front door and looked out to view the situation. It was extremely wet and incredibly windy! However, at minutes after eight, when I finally got up and looked outside…lo and behold, it was white with snow! 

Mama Mia! I know I heard something on the T.V about wet snow in the evening, but apparently nothing happened until the early morning hours, and this was a little more than the wet kind. (smile) 

But yuh know what? It didn’t kill the workingman’s enthusiasm for the upcoming weekend…not at all! He was still out there in the cold, enthusiastically declaring: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and the weekend is here! At long last, our little break from sweatshop work and paltry pay! 

A man can’t even afford to really party on the slave wages we make…Steups! But we’ll certainly do our best! And we going to have a rollicking good time in spite of it! Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Ah mih people, paltry pay is certainly a major factor in our world’s abject poverty today. Even in the supposed first world countries, it’s difficult to have a decent standard of living just working one job, so can you imagine what’s happening in the third and fourth class countries? Hn! Absolute robbery and immense ‘sufferation!’ 

And the last thing we need is a whole lot of partying and licentiousness. Our focus should be instead on action like what our Friday Chant advises. So let’s chant it out nuh in true sincerity and a strong sense of purpose. 

‘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, unless we renew and refresh ourselves over the weekend, we’ll be no good for the new week of work. That brings us to our Bit. ‘And many shall follow their pernicious (destructive) ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of (blasphemed).’ 

Now all of us have encountered some of that false teaching and blasphemy at some stage of our lives, and I reiterate, the only way to counter it is by knowing the Word of God. And you can’t know the Word of God unless you are constantly and faithfully and deeply immersed in it. 

Over the last couple of days, we saw what Peter had to say about the false teachers and prophets. Today we’ll get some insight into Bruh Paul’s predictions of apostasy, in his first letter to Timothy. 

‘Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing (deceiving) spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron. 

Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats (food), which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: For it is sanctified (consecrated) by the word of God and prayer.’ (1 Tim.4:1-5) 

Yuh see friends, Bruh Paul also knew how evil we’d become in the last days. Now here are some explanations from the scholars. 

‘4:1. Expressly means clearly. To depart means to apostatize. Apostasy is the deliberate and permanent rejection of Christianity after previous profession of faith in it. Doctrines of devils, that is doctrines taught by demons.’ 

‘4:2. Speaking lies in hypocrisy (or, “by the hypocrisy of liars”): The demons of verse 1 expound their doctrines, not directly, but indirectly through such human ministers. These are further described as having their conscience seared with a hot iron, that is branded (scarred) in their conscience. 

Permanently defaced, the moral life of these hypocrites is scarred by sin as they carry around the awareness of their guilt, yet continue preaching to others.’ 

‘4:3. Two examples of demonic doctrines are cited here: (1) prohibition against marriage, and (2) abstaining from certain foods.’ 

‘4:4. Every creature of God is good (or, “Everything created by God is good”). This substantiates the remark in verse 3 that God created foods to be eaten, not abstained from.’ 

‘4:5. By divine statements (by the word of God) declaring all foods fit for man, and by the believer’s giving of thanks before meals (by…prayer), food is sanctified. This means food is set apart (reserved) for consumption by Christians.’ 

So friends, let’s remember today that there are numerous false teachers and doctrines in our world, trying to take us away from following the true Christ, and we need to be very diligent and careful in what and whom we listen to, else we can be very easily led astray. Much LOVE!

…the only antidote for false doctrine and teaching…thorough knowledge of God’s Word…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 October 2016 Isaiah 53:7.

Isaiah 53:7.    He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought (was led) as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. 

‘Oh friends, I, I am blessed, Yes, I want to tell the world that I, I am blessed!’ Sing it with me: ‘Oh we. We are blessed! Let’s tell the world, that we, we are blessed!’

And that’s the gospel truth my brethren! For as children of the Most High God Jehovah, followers of Jesus Christ, and fertile soil in which the Holy Spirit dwells, then we must be blessed! Only thing is that a lot of the time, many of us don’t behave as though we are blessed. Instead, we moan and groan and complain about insignificant stuff. 

And yuh know what friends, a lot of the things we consider problems, are things that most of the world would only be too glad to have, along with the many benefits that we take for granted.

We are just too spoiled and complacent, expecting everything to be handed to us on a silver platter. But that’s not real life friends, for in this world serious problems abound, many of which fortunately don’t touch or concern us. 

Most of us have a job, a roof over our heads, food on table and we are reasonably healthy, and if not, we have the opportunity to go to a doctor. Meanwhile, billions of people around the world have none of those amenities, or rather necessities. But yet, we complain about petty stuff. 

Anyway, it’s Saturday, so let’s check out a couple of quotes from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And this week’s quotes are both short and to the point. The first says: ‘Don’t expect people to listen to your advice and ignore your example.’ 

And that’s one of the biggest problems in our Christian faith! We talk a good talk, but don’t walk the necessary walk. Consequently we acquire a reputation as hypocrites, like the Jewish leaders, the Pharisees of Jesus’ day.

Oh mih people, that hypocritical aspect of our earthly pilgrimage is hurting our cause so badly that Jesus’ church has now become something of a laughingstock among unbelievers. Sad but true. And it’s our own fault too. 

My fellow believers, we badly need to clean up our act on that front, otherwise all our efforts to mobilize the heathen to join Jesus’ LOVE Revolution will fall on deaf ears, and we’ll be laughed to scorn.

Now is that the result we desire for Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross? NO WAY! So let’s get serious and start practicing what we preach nuh, if we truly want to represent Jesus in the best manner possible. Remember, actions work more forcibly on the mind than precepts, mere words.  

And the second of Anselm’s quotes declares: ‘Instead of complaining–contribute.’ Now that’s what we were talking about earlier on. We are a society that complains way too much about petty stuff, when we should be contributing to the solutions of the numerous problems we have.

And yuh know mih people, complaining is a sin! Too much complaining doesn’t sit right with our heavenly Father. He wants us to be giving thanks and praise, regardless of our difficult situations. 

Just look at Jesus, whom we are supposed to be the mirror image of. He had real serious problems down here on earth. But He never complained. The Good Book tells us in our Bit: ‘He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought (was led) as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.’ 

And in yesterday’s Bit, we saw where it said that Jesus ‘endured the cross, despising the shame….’ He certainly put up with a lot of affliction and rejection for our sakes without a whole lot of complaining. Now I know that we all can’t be as stoic and uncomplaining as Jesus, but we can surely do much better than we’re currently doing. 

And when we have problems, the best way to resist the temptation to complain and carry on is to help others with their problems. It works wonders friends! It not only takes our minds off of our own troubles, but it also pleases and glorifies our heavenly Father! 

Now here are a couple of situations where Isaiah’s prophecy about Jesus not speaking came to pass. First up is His interrogation before the high priest, where two false witnesses stated. ‘This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days. And the high priest arose, and said unto him, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness (testify) against thee? But Jesus held his peace (remained silent). (Matt.26:61-63a) 

However, shortly after, when the high priest said unto Jesus, ‘I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God. Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said (it is as you said): nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.’ (Matt. 26:63b-64) 

Possibly Jesus should have kept quiet then too because that only caused the high priest to throw a tantrum, rent his clothes and declare that Jesus’ statement was blasphemous for which the council found Him guilty and began to abuse him, physically and emotionally.  (Matt.26:65-68) 

But I guess Jesus had to say something like that, otherwise they would not have had a case against Him, because it’s that charge of blasphemy for which they finally brought Him before the Roman authorities, seeking His death.  

That brings us to the other time when Jesus remained silent. He was before Pilate the Roman governor. ‘And when he was accused of the chief priests and elders, he answered nothing. Then said Pilate unto him, Hearest thou not how many things they witness (testify) against thee? And he answered him to never a word; insomuch that the governor marvelled greatly.’ (Matt.27:12-14)

Oh friends, I know it’s difficult, but sometimes it’s best for us too to keep quiet when we are being wrongfully accused. It throws off our accusers, gives us time to think and also time for God to act on our behalf. 

Well enough for us to chew on today. Please take your time, chew slowly, and ponder while you chew. (smile) Much LOVE!

…silence is usually golden in most situations…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 September 2016 Joshua 1:6a.

Joshua 1:6a.   Be strong and of a good courage…

And then it was Thursday…another glorious day in the life! Yes friends, we are alive to face another day, to action the good plans God has for our lives. Isn’t that wonderful? 

It surely is! Because there is no other God like ours; the ONE and ONLY, TRUE and LIVING GOD! He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob – The Creator, the Provider, the Comforter, the Healer, the Redeemer, the Saviour, the Giver of Salvation and Eternal Life! 

Wow! What a powerful and wonderful God we serve my people! He is a God full of mercy, grace, forgiveness, wisdom, compassion, long-suffering and understanding. So let’s wisely acknowledge Him each and everyday of our lives nuh; make Him the NUMBER ONE priority in our lives, because that’s what He desires and what He also deserves. 

And having expounded the goodness and greatness of our magnificent God, listen to this story of His moving in mysterious ways. Recently a lady, Lisa Bevere, an international speaker and writer, was a guest on the Hour of Power Show. She claimed that one day after returning from a long trip, she was somewhat jet-lagged and fell asleep at her computer. 

Realizing that she needed rest, she got up and went to her bed, but just as she was falling asleep she heard the Holy Spirit say, ‘I do not LOVE all my children equally…’ At that she jumped up and declared, ‘Wait, that’s blasphemy! You have to LOVE us all the same!’ 

And He said, ‘I don’t. Same would mean that one of you were replaceable. And equal would mean that my LOVE could be measured.’ He said, ‘I do not LOVE my children equally, I LOVE them uniquely!’ 

Now we won’t argue over it, but it’s certainly an interesting concept. We’re each uniquely made, that means there is only one of us, and we cannot be replaced, and neither can the LOVE of our amazing God be measured. We just know that it’s so great that He gave His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ as a sacrificial lamb for our sins, and He LOVES each and everyone of us unconditionally. 

And yuh know what? Whether He LOVES us the same, equally, uniquely or whatever, it really doesn’t matter. As long as I know that He LOVES me, then that’s quite sufficient for me! Hope it is for you too. 

That brings us to the ever-important aspect of our Thursday Blessings. Let’s declare them with joy, enthusiasm, and strong belief. For remember, a blessing isn’t a blessing until it’s been spoken over someone. 

All together now: ‘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!’ 

Way to go mih people! And that just enables us to put our Bit into action. ‘Be strong and of a good courage…’ 

Yes friends, with those blessings under our belt, we can’t help but be strong and courageous in this sinful, ungodly and evil world! The problem though is to keep up that strength and courage, all, or at least most of the time. And that can only be done by hearing, reading, studying and meditating on the word, on the truth of God, and then by constantly communicating with Him through prayer. 

And eventually, we’ll reach that stage of maturity where we can proclaim like Bruh David. ‘I will bless the Lord, who hath given me counsel; my reins (heart) also instruct me in the night seasons. I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. 

Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest (dwell securely) in hope. For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell (the abode of the dead); neither wilt thou suffer (allow) thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou wilt show me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.’ (Ps.16:7-11) 

Oh friends, what wonderful words of assurance in God’s goodness and mercy! If that doesn’t encourage and uplift us, then I don’t know what will. Nonetheless, listen to this awesome promise from our God, spoken through the prophet Isaiah, re Israel restored to Zion. 

‘Strengthen ye the weak hands, and confirm (make firm) the feeble knees. 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. 

Then the eyes of the blind will be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap as a hart (deer), and the tongue of the dumb (mute) sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.’ (Is.35:3-6) 

Ah mih breddren, more wonderful promises from our magnanimous God! And what’s so great about those promises is that He can bring them to pass! No other supposed deity can do it, but our God can. 

So let’s go out today full of vim and vigour nuh, strong, courageous, exuding much hope and faith in the mighty God we serve, so that the unbelievers will sit up and take notice and shout, ‘I want what they have! I want Jesus too!’ That’s my hope and prayer for us today. Much LOVE!

…only as a believer is strong, courageous, enthusiastic and faithful…will others seek what he has…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 January 2016 Hebrews 12:1

Hebrews 12:1.  Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance, endurance) the race that is set before us.

Ah mih people, it’s another cold, bleak winter’s day! But we have to remember that that’s what winter is all about; cold and bleak, though it doesn’t seem so bad when the sun shines through in all its glory. (smile) 

And since this is where we live, we just have to learn to live with it, knowing that through God’s faithful help we will be able to handle it, and eventually come out victorious in the glorious springtime. Oh glory to God friends for His unceasing help! 

Now here is something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that probably hits the nail on the head with many of us. I couldn’t help but share it. 

It’s simply titled ‘January,’ and reads thus: ‘It’s January, Lord – The drab, dreary middle – And my thoughts are as drab As the miserable month. Does everybody hit a January slump Or am I the only one? 

The first week wasn’t too bad: There were Christmas thank-yous to write A few resolutions to store away The huddle of year-end sales. But thank-you notes bring no returns And resolutions are quickly broken And marked-down trinkets fast lose appeal. 

When you said Behold, I make all things new Did You forget January, Lord? Or in January do I sometimes forget you?’ 

Oh friends, that poem certainly does resemble the mid January funk that many of us find ourselves in. The weather is the pits, the Christmas bills are starting to come in, and we don’t know where the money is going to come from to pay them, and added to that anxiety, we’re still physically and mentally tired from all the Christmas and New Year’s hoopla. It certainly is a familiar predicament. 

But to answer the poets ending question, the response is a definite Yes! We do seem to forget God in these anxious times, when these are the times we should be drawing ever closer to Him. God doesn’t make mistakes or lie. If he says that everything is made new, then it IS made new! 

That means the problem lies with us, which brings us to the promise for that poem, which is also our Bit. ‘Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance, endurance) the race that is set before us.’ 

Ah my fellow believers that is exactly the kind of advice we need this cold morning in mid-January. And the Lord moves in such mysterious ways, that it’s only last night I watched Uncle John (John Hagee) preach a sermon on that same verse. He titled it ‘Run To Win!’ 

And so it should be my fellow believers. Why else would we run a race if it were not to win eh? And the particular race we’re talking about here is the race of life! 

Bruh Paul likened our earthly lives to a race, having in mind the ancient Greek Olympics, which we can compare to out own modern day Olympiads. 

And the first thing he does is remind us of all the other saints, the heroes that have run this race before us, the ‘great cloud of witnesses,’ who are looking down on us as we run our race. So it’s not like we don’t have any examples or mentors to look back at. 

Then we have to ‘lay aside every weight,’ that prevents us from running this race of life. Yes my brethren we have to get rid of all the impediments that weigh us down and prevent us from putting forth our best efforts. 

And Bruh Paul refers to some of them in Colossians. ‘But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not to one another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: 

Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond (slave) nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.’ (Col.3:8-11) 

Oh my precious friends of faith, those are the kinds of things that prevent us from properly concentrating on running this magnificent race of life that’s set before us. 

And here are some explanations from the scholars, which will help us to further understand those scriptures. ‘3:9. Seeing means “since.” The old man is all that a person was prior to salvation: his worldly thinking and sinful acts. Since all this was renounced at conversion, one should lie not. Falsehood ill becomes the person claiming to be a disciple of Him who said, “I am the…truth.” 

‘3:10. The new man is the person one becomes after conversion: he possesses a new nature, values, aspirations, and a new life-style. This “new man” is constantly being renewed or developed until he attains a mature knowledge of the God who (re)created him. The more a believer knows and understands of God, the more he will be like God in character and conduct.’ 

‘3:11. Not only is the “new man” to put sin to death, he is also to put away man-made barriers that divide people and that nourish the vices of the old life. Among renewed humanity there are no national, ceremonial, cultural, or social distinctions. To the redeemed Christ is all: that is, He is everything and He is what matters most to them. And Christ is…in all; that is, He dwells in all believers.’ 

Yes Friends, we’ll end with those wonderful words of wisdom: Christ is everything to the believer, and He dwells in each and every one of us. Oh what a wonderful scenario! 

Let’s remember that, and ponder on all that we’ve said to day, so that we can increase in the knowledge and maturity of Christ our Lord and Saviour. Much LOVE!

…to know, know, know Him…is to LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Him…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 March 2015 1 John 1:9‏‏‏

1 John 1:9.     If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Ah Friends, the ole fella is somewhat slow and doddering this chilly Tuesday morning in Holy Week. So please cut him some slack, have a heart, show him a li’l LOVE nuh. (smile) But the caffeine is hot and strong and sweet, and our great God is still in control, which means that all is well. Praise the Lord!

And when I say that our God is something else it’s true, for He just provided me with a lead in to what I want to preamble about today; laughter; laughter in times of trouble. I was just outside putting out the garbage and chuckling at my slow doddering steps. Hn, Hn!
 
Ah mih people, it’s not easy, but please remember that our GOD IS GOOD; He will provide for us in each and every circumstance. He’s promised never to leave nor forsake us, and He faithfully keeps all of His promises.
 
Now listen to this quote attributed to Ed Howe, and though I found several Ed Howes in my research, I do believe the one we’re looking for is Edgar Watson Howe (1853-1937), an American novelist, magazine and newspaper editor. Howe is quoted as saying ‘That if you don’t learn to laugh at trouble, you won’t have anything to laugh at when you grow old.’
 
Ah mih breddren, that is so true that it’s not funny. If we don’t learn to laugh at some of our problems, especially when we encounter a chronic illness, we will be continually miserable and have nothing to laugh at in our winter years.
 
Thankfully, I learned that truth at a fairly early age, possibly because of the early onset of some back and knee problems, and over the years have developed that attitude. So when the aches and pains set in, though they can be very trying, I still manage to chuckle at them, while asking the Lord what’s next?
 
I don’t usually get an answer, but I know that He empathizes with my condition, and He is definitely the One who has kept me going all these years, and will keep me going for as long as it takes to fulfill His plan for my life. Glory to God!
 
So my brethren, I’d advise us to develop that attribute of laughter, for it’s often the best remedy for whatever ails us, and it’s certainly free and readily available at all times.
 
Now here’s another remedy that’s also readily available, this time for our biggest problems, our sins. ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’
 
Wow! What a promise my people! And it’s the gospel truth, since our God does not lie, and has put the necessary systems in motion by sacrificing His Son Jesus as atonement for our abominable transgressions.
 
What more can we ask eh? Nothing really my fellow believers! Everything’s set in place, we just have to come to the throne of grace and ask for mercy and forgiveness and it will be granted. But foolishly, too many of us refuse to do that, that’s why we’re still tied up, mired in the quicksand that’s life.
 
Oh Friends, the only way out of that mire is by accepting Jesus Christ as the Lord and Saviour of your life, both physically and spiritually. With that acceptance comes a brand new life, you’re become a new creation in Christ; (2 Cor.5:17; Gal.6:15) with new values, new ways of thinking, accomplished by putting Christ first and foremost in all your doings.
 
Anyway, I want to close off these messages on the confession of our sins with a dramatic rendering of Jesus on the subject. This occurs when He talks about a house divided cannot stand.
 
‘He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad. Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.
 
And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world (age), neither in the world to come.’ (Matt.12:30-32)
 
Oh Friends, strong words indeed from our Saviour!
 
And we’ll let the scholars explain that for us. ‘12:31-38. The blasphemy against the Holy Ghost is deliberate rejection of Christ, His Spirit wrought miracles and His salvation. It is the ultimate sin that by its very nature puts a man beyond the opportunity of salvation.
 
The Holy Spirit brings the offer of salvation to the heart of man. To reject Him is to act “presumptuously” and thus to “blaspheme” God. Those who reject His offer of salvation are in reality blaspheming the very nature of God Himself and the genuineness of His grace.’
 
Heavy stuff Friends!
 
And the scholars continue further with some basic Sins against the Holy Spirit. ’12:31-32. All sin is serious, and to some degree challenges and attacks the character and authority of God. But six sins are specifically identified as sins against the Holy Spirit. Since the Holy Spirit is a person, He may be sinned against. Since He is also God, it is an extremely serious matter to be guilty of sinning against Him.
 
These six sins are blaspheming (vv.31-32; Luke 12:10), lying or tempting (Acts 5:4,9), despising (Heb.10:29), resisting or striving with (Gen.6:3; Acts 7:51), vexing or grieving (Is,63:10; Eph.4:30), and quenching (1 Thess.5:19) the Holy Spirit.
 
Illustration: Because of the severity with which Jesus describes blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, some people unnecessarily fear that they may have committed the unpardonable sin. One of the characteristics of such sin is that the Holy Spirit ceases to convict of sin in one’s life – so the fact that someone may be concerned about a particular sin indicates he is not beyond grace. He should immediately repent of that sin to restore fellowship with God.
 
Application: The keys to not sinning against the Holy Spirit are to: (1) be led by the Spirit, (2) be filled with the Spirit, and (3) be illuminated by the Spirit. (First Reference, Gen.6:3; Primary Reference, John 16:13).’
 
Oh Friends, that is wonderful information, please accept it and follow it up by reading those Bible references, I just did, and they’re very enlightening and encouraging. That’s your homework for today. (smile)
 
Seriously though my people, if you want to truly understand the Lord’s Word you have to spend time in it; reading, pondering, questioning, and inwardly digesting it, so that it can become a natural way of life for you. A lot of us just pay minimal attention to the Word, but expect to be illuminated and enlightened, but that only comes with serious study.
 
So let’s decide to do that due diligence nuh my people, so that the Word can guide us through the Holy Spirit to the land of the truly living and LOVING and serving God. That is the wisdom of heaven for all ages! Much LOVE!
 
…Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people…thou hast covered all their sin…Selah… (Ps.85:2)

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 January 2015 Hebrews 12:1

Hebrews 12:1. Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance) the race that is set before us. 
 

All hail my fine Friends in Jesus Christ! It’s a brand new spanking day! Yes my brethren, we’ve been granted the fabulous gift of life on a new day through the wonderful grace of Almighty God, so please, let’s rejoice and be glad in it!
 
Let’s joyfully enjoy (smile) the new mercies and blessings that have been specially prepared for us for this day. Let’s also do our best to live up to the high ideals of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, whose motto is excellence at all times.
 
And having said all of that, on this chilly Thursday morning, the 15th day of January 2015, I have this most appropriate passage for this time of year to share from the One Year Book of Promises, with writings from Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s simply titled ‘January.’
 
Read with me: ‘It’s January, Lord – The drab, dreary middle – And my thoughts are as drab As the miserable month. Does everybody hit a January slump Or am I the only one? The first week wasn’t too bad: There were Christmas thank-yous to write A few resolutions to store away The huddle of year-end sales.
 
But thank-you notes bring no returns And resolutions are quickly broken And marked-down trinkets fast lose appeal. When you said Behold, I make all things new Did you forget January, Lord? Or in January do I sometimes forget You?’
 
Oh my people, those sentiments are so true, for many of us feel that way at this time of year. I guess we can call them the ‘dog days’ of January, where we’re somewhat lost in the middle of it all. The celebrations are over and done with for the old year, and the new one hasn’t quite taken shape or hold as yet.
 
Plus we’re wondering and contemplating how we’re going to pay the bills that we’ve amassed over the Christmas season. (smile) But yuh know what my fellow believers in Christ? In this time of uncertainty, we can all hold on to the promise attached to that passage, which we’ll use as our Bit.
 
‘Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance) the race that is set before us.’
 
Yes Friends, there are so many heroes of faith that have gone before us that we don’t lack for good and positive examples in living our Christian faith. But we need to do certain things if we’re going to be successful.
 
First of all we need to throw off any weight, both literally and figuratively, any impediment at all that is holding us back from running our race. We also need to throw off any sin, large or small, that’s entangling us, that has us struggling or keeping us back from reaching the lofty goals that Christ has planned for us.
 
And above all, we need to do those things with patience and perseverance, keep a steadfast and true pace. Yes my people, we need to be always trying to improve as we run this race of life.
 
And as the author of Hebrews so wisely and rightly continues, we ought to be: ‘Looking unto Jesus the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith: who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.’ (Heb.12:2)
 
Oh Friends, what an encouraging and uplifting picture! Jesus is the best example of earthly living we can, and will ever have! He both began and finished the course of our faith. So we need to look to Him for proper guidance and strength to face this rat-race world that we’re currently living in.
 
We’ll never be perfect as Him, but the important thing is to try, to do our best to get as close to a Christ-like character as we can. That brings us to our New Year’s resolution of endeavouring to have a closer walk with Jesus.
 
I do hope that we haven’t already forgotten it as we get caught up again in the busyness of life. And I believe that if we’re feeling like the passage above from the Book of Promises, then we have indeed forgotten that resolution.
 
Please, let’s realign our priorities, with Jesus as NUMBER ONE, so that we can have a fruitful and successful 2015, for I firmly and faithfully believe that this will be the BEST YEAR in many of our lives!
 
Now let’s look at a scripture passage that adds weight to our Bit and empowers us in our faith. Hear Bruh Paul’s advice to the Colossians, where he’s talking about the new life in Christ. Here are some weights that we might need to throw off to lighten our load in running this race of life.
 
‘But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds. And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him. Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond (slave) nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.’ (Col.3:8-11)
 
Truly words of wisdom, my people! Now let’s close with some interesting and important notes from the scholars re those verses. ‘3:9. Seeing means “since.” The old man is all that a person was prior to salvation: his worldly thinking and sinful acts. Since all this was renounced at conversion, one should lie not. Falsehood ill becomes the person claiming to be a disciple of Him who said, “I am the…truth.”
 
3:10. The new man is the person one becomes after conversion: he possesses a new nature, values, aspirations, and a new life-style. This “new man” is constantly being renewed or developed until he attains a mature knowledge of the God who (re)created him. The more a believer knows and understands of God, the more he will be like God in character and conduct.’
 
‘3:11. Not only is the “new man” to put sin to death, he is also to put away man-made barriers that divide people and that nourish the vices of the old life. Among renewed humanity there are no national, ceremonial, cultural, or social distinctions. To the redeemed Christ is all; that is, He is everything, and He is what matters most to them. And Christ is…in all; that is, He dwells in all believers.’
 
Oh my people, it’s not easy trying to live a truly Christian life in this evil and ungodly world, but if we stick like glue to Christ, He will empower us to run this earthly race successfully, and that’s no lie! Much LOVE!
 
…just a closer walk with thee…grant it Jesus…is my plea…daily walking close to thee…let it be…dear Lord…let it be…

 

 

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