Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 January 2021 Ephesians 1:3.

Ephesians 1:3.     ​Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.

And then it was good ole Wednesday, the day that gets us over the hump in our work week, that is for those of that are still working. By then we have become acclimatized to the rigours of the work week and have settled down in our spirits, knowing that we can’t get away from it all, if we want to make a living. What a wonderful thing that we have Jesus to encourage and energize us as we go through the ups and downs of this evil and cruel world! 

Can you imagine the state of our livers right now in these dismal, controversial and calamitous times, if we didn’t have Jesus to hold on to, to be our rock and place of refuge, our safe shelter from the storm? Brother! It would be like the bleak, damp, winter days that we’re currently having in my area, with no sunshine whatsoever, just a grey and dark hood over the land, with nothing to inspire soul, body or spirit. But as Bruh Paul says to the Ephesians: ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.’ (Eph. 1:3) 

Yes friends, our God is indeed worthy of blessings, of much praise and thanks, because He has blessed us, conferred unimaginable benefits upon us. And as the scholars ask, ‘When did He do this? Probably in eternity past (cf. vs. 4-5).’ And I’ll quote those verses here for convenience. ‘According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in LOVE. Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children (as sons) by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.’ (Eph. 1:4-5) 

Ah precious people, it’s so wonderful to know that we have been chosen long ago to be God’s children and heirs through Christ Jesus, who, through His sacrifice made it possible to become holy and righteous and in right relationship with the Father. And what’s amazing is that the Father did this out of His own LOVE and caring for us, greatly desiring to offer us His grace and mercy so we would not die an eternal death, but live with Him in eternity, for ever and ever. Yes, we need to remember that it was all God’s doing and show the appropriate thanks and gratitude by living a life that’s worthy of and appropriate for a believer in Christ Jesus. 

As Bruh Paul said to the church at Rome: ‘But God commendeth (demonstrated) his (own) LOVE toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom. 5:8) Can you imagine any other supposed god doing that for a bunch of ungrateful, disobedient people? Not on your life! But Yahweh, Jehovah God, the Deity we worship did it, because of the magnanimity of His soul and Spirit, the awesome LOVE He had for His most precious creation. Wow! 

And turning back to our Bit, talking of the spiritual blessings conferred on us, the scholars ask: ‘Where are these blessings located? In heavenly places, that is, in heaven. As the Christian’s citizenship (Phil. 3:20), high priest (Heb. 4:14), hope (Col. 1:5), and inheritance (1 Pet. 1:4) are all “in heaven,” as his treasure (Matt. 6:20-21) and affection (Col. 3:1-2) are to be “in heaven,” so also the Christian’s blessings are “in heaven.” These spiritual benefits were granted to the believer and are retained in heaven for him, being progressively dispersed to him on earth in accord with his need and Christian growth.’ 

Oh my people, as we grow in spiritual maturity, we receive more of our heavenly blessings here on earth. It’s like the money we save in the bank; when we need it we take it out. And yuh know what? It was all done through Christ Jesus! Yes, from day one, the Father planned to bless us through His magnificent Son. That was just how it had to be to be done, so it would be authentic, be just and right as demanded by His holy, righteous and just position as judge of the universe! So none of it is an accident, but a well prepared and thought out plan designed to meet all the needs, desires and commitments of all concerned. 

Bless His holy name my fellow saints for being so kind, considerate and compassionate, when we didn’t even deserve one iota of His LOVE, grace and mercy! So why we do refuse to bow down and worship Him eh? Why are we so enamoured with and are so desirous of worshipping a fallen angel, who has nothing of substance to offer but eternal death and damnation, a mere creation of God, just like us, who couldn’t defeat God, but was kicked out of heaven for rebelling against His Creator? 

Do we think that with us in tow, he can now defeat God eh? Hn! Friends, God is the Creator and Controller of this universe, and NOTHING happens in it unless He allows it. I don’t know why that’s so hard for us to accept, especially when our frailties, weaknesses and mortality show that we are no match for the Almighty. 

Friends, it should be oh so clear that we are fighting a losing battle by trying to turf God out of our society. He made it and controls it, and He’s not going anywhere. Look at how long we’ve been trying to resist His word and invitations, thousands of years, and yet still they are here with us today, stronger than ever. Shouldn’t that tell us something? 

Yes! That it’s a waste of time fighting God. And it’s best, as the ole saying goes: ‘When yuh can’t beat them, join them!’ That makes so much sense in these trying and disastrous times my people, since as our efforts are meeting with no success whatsoever. But as they also say, ‘you can only lead a horse to water, but you can’t make Him drink.’ Let’s hope that I have at least led us to Christ, and once we get there, I know that He will do the rest. (smile) 

So for those of us who are truly interested, let’s go home now declaring (awright!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful and most enviable position in Christ Jesus! 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 my brethren, please remember that if we endure until the end, our future will be even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine! That’s the promise of Jesus!Much LOVE!

…step out in faith…trust in Jesus…and you won’t regret it… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 December 2020 Romans 5:8.

Romans 5:8.     ​But God commendeth (demonstrated) his (own) LOVE toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Ah yes, Monday it is – the last Monday in this crazy and unprecedented year of 2020! And believe me, the craziness and ‘unprecedentation’ (smile) won’t be over for a while yet, mainly because mankind is such a foolish, unpredictable animal that refuses to get together under one big, safe and secure umbrella, that of Almighty God! 

And this quote from the website preachology.com explains: ‘The Umbrella of God – what is that exactly? The symbolism of the umbrella is the protection of God’s covering. When we as Christians turn our lives over to God, He in turn promises to guide and protect. As we know an umbrella shields us from the rain pouring down upon us. If we were to picture God holding a giant umbrella over his people, what would happen if one or more decided to walk outside that umbrella? 

Of course, that is obvious; they would no longer have the protection of that shield (umbrella) and they would be drenched with the rains falling. God is always there for us. It is always us that walks away from him. He promises if we will follow his words, and walk in his light, we will have his protection. Often in the faith we can find ourselves walking outside this umbrella without thinking. The cares of the world and burdens of life can at times overwhelm even the most honest of Christians. 

We find ourselves trying to put the problems of life upon ourselves and not giving them to God, and walking in a freedom that boggles the mind of any non-Christian. Often temptations will surround this umbrella and like any, they will attempt to lure all they can away from this protection. Outside that safety zone, they are vulnerable to any attack of the enemy. It is much like a herd of sheep and the wolf that hunts them. The wolf will attempt to frighten the sheep, creating a chaos in the herd – causing them to separate and run away from the protection of the Shepherd. 

Having done this the wolf can search for the weakest one, outside that umbrella of protection, and make his kill. As long as the sheep stay near to the Shepherd, he can protect them. When the sheep begin doing their own thing, that ability to protect is lessened. Much like our Pastors – their words of guidance can only help, if we apply those words to our lives – amen.’ 

And therein lies our problem friends! We wander away from our Good Shepherd, in the mistaken thought that through our free will, we can do better on our own. Or like now, the big bad wolf has frightened us with all the adversity that currently surrounds us and just like the flock of sheep we scatter in fear, helter-skelter and yon. But unfortunately, that doesn’t help us, it just makes matters worse, since by that action we play right into the enemy’s hands. Yuh know the ole army tactic of divide and conquer? That only makes us more liable to capture, for remember there is always more safety in numbers. 

Oh my people, when are going to learn eh, that in times of adversity, or any time at all really, but especially in the rough going, we don’t run from God, but to Him? As Peter so wisely advises in his first epistle: ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.’ (1 Pet. 5:6-7) And if that isn’t the gospel truth, then I don’t know what is nuh! 

Just look at the season we’re celebrating right now nuh; Christmas! That’s when the Lord sent His only Son to earth as a baby boy to begin His wonderful plan of salvation for us disgusting sinners! Why yuh think He went to so much trouble to save us eh? Because He blooming well LOVED us! Why can’t we accept and believe that eh? Are our skulls so thick with egotism and pride and all the other negative stuff of the world, that we can’t believe our Creator LOVES us? 

Chuh man! The Good Book says it loud and clear: ‘But God commendeth (demonstrated) his (own) LOVE toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom. 5:8) How many of us are willing to do something good for those who wrong us before they atone in some form and fashion eh? Not too many! But God in His great LOVE for us, put Himself out by sacrificing His Son for us while we were still deep in sin. Now doesn’t that touch a tender chord in your heart? It ought to. 

And hear what the psalmist had to say about all that nuh in Psalm 91 – God is a refuge and a fortress. ‘He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.’ (Ps. 91:1) Now you couldn’t get any safer than that that friends! And the psalmist continues: ‘I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.’ Ps. 91:2) 

And believe me people, until we come to that very serious realization that our ONLY hope is in God Almighty, the evil wolves of Beelzebub will keep threatening, making us afraid, scattering and devouring us. So let’s do what we ought to be doing all along nuh, casting our cares on the Lord, turning to Him in prayer, what we call our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

Altogether now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive and standing in faith despite the mass confusion that’s currently prevailing in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems; the pandemic of Covid -19, the racial, political, and religious strife that’s ignited worldwide, plus the natural disasters like storms, famine, drought, plagues, climate change, wildfires, earthquakes and erupting volcanoes that suddenly seem to be blossoming more and more as time goes by. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have 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, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction to bring our problems under control. 

And for those who are currently suffering from the many negative situations, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. Father, 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!’ 

And please remember, the Lord doesn’t just listen to our words, but looks at our hearts. So if we’re not sincere…then crapaud smoke we pipe! Much LOVE!

…only under God’s umbrella…are you truly safe… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 December 2020 Romans 5:8.

Romans 5:8.     ​But God commendeth (demonstrated) his (own) LOVE toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

‘Good golly Miss Molly! It’s Monday!’ Yes friends, the Monday before Christmas, four more days to the Big One! Are you ready for it? Have you done all your Christmas shopping? Hn, hn! It will certainly be a different kind of Christmas this pandemic year of 2020; not as much physical gathering, nor even eating and drinking and exchanging of gifts, as lots of people can’t afford the stuff they are accustomed buying. But that doesn’t mean the season can’t be festive, if we remember the real reason for the season in the first place -the birth of Christ. 

Now that was the first step in God’s long promised, great gift of reconciling us to Himself and providing salvation and eternal life through the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ. But to die as a man, Christ first had to be born, born of that virgin mother, in that li’l town called Bethlehem, before He could eventually make His way to the cross in Jerusalem and pay our sin debt in full. 

Wow! No other supposed deity is as magnanimous as our God! All those other supposed gods want us to sacrifice our lives to them, but the wonderful God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob sacrificed His Son for us woeful sinners to show His amazing unconditional LOVE! As the Good Book says: ‘But God commendeth (demonstrated) his (own) LOVE toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom. 5:8) All praise and glory to His holy name! 

And all He asks of us is to believe in His Son and be obedient to His word. But because of the free will God gave us, too many of us are filled with pride and lust and big egos and hard hearts, and thus refuse to bow down to the name that’s above every other name. Now though our God is gracious and merciful and all those other wonderful things, He’s also a stickler for justice and righteousness and obedience, and the non-doing of those things usually cause serious consequences in our lives. And when plenty of us refuse to toe the line, like right now, that means there are plenty of serious consequence in our world, like right now. 

Jesus also said: ‘If ye LOVE me, keep my commandments.’ (John 14:15) And though we claim to LOVE Him, we definitely aren’t keeping His commandments the way He desires, otherwise our world would not be in such a terrible mess. Even this big do we make about Christmas, a lot of it is false and/or pseudo-Christianity, because our attention is more wrapped up in the gifts and food and shopping, the commercial aspect of the situation, not truly in the birth of Christ and what it really meant, and still means for mankind. 

The celebration has taken on too much of a worldly and commercial overtone these days, meaning, that like so much else in this world, the things of God have taken a step or two back, and no longer predominate in our society. And that should give us serious cause for concern my people, for when a society has lost its way, when Almighty God is not first and foremost in the equation, then that society, like Humpty Dumpty, is slated for a fall, and ofttimes a rather big fall at that, from which it never recovers its previous prosperity. 

And right now, I believe we are at that stage, at the brink of the precipice, because God is no longer Number One in our society. Oh yes, we talk the talk, but remember He looks at our hearts, and currently the motives therein are not God-centred. So what’s the position eh? It’s dark and dreary…unless we come to our senses and return to the ways of God; ways that our forefathers embraced more faithfully than we have done. 

Friends, the only thing that can save us now is a revolution; a LOVE Revolution, for there is way more hate and negativity in our world right now than there is LOVE! And remember God is LOVE! So the less LOVE we have, the less of God we will also have. But we are people of faith, great faith, and anything we put our minds to, we can do, provided we have God involved. So if we require a LOVE Revolution to save our world, then we need to go to God to help us. As Jesus specified: ‘Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.’ (Matt. 7:7) 

And the way we go to God is in prayer; that’s His desire. So as one sincere voice, let’s take all our problems to Him now nuh, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive and standing in faith despite the mass confusion that’s currently prevailing in our world. 

We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems; the pandemic of Covid -19, the racial, political, and religious strife that’s ignited worldwide, plus the natural disasters like storms, famine, drought, plagues, climate change, wildfires, earthquakes and erupting volcanoes that suddenly seem to be blossoming more and more as time goes by. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have 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, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction to bring our problems under control. And for those who are currently suffering from the many negative situations, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. 

Father, 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 let me remind us again, that the Lord looks at the motives of our hearts before He answers our prayers, so if they weren’t right just now, and we’re not prepared to turn back to Him in true repentance, then we’ll be left out in the darkness, with no forthcoming light, a rather sad situation indeed. Much LOVE!

…to have a successful society…the LOVE of God…must predominate… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 October 2020 Romans 5:8.

Romans 5:8.     ​But God commendeth (demonstrated) his LOVE toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Here we go again friends, time to sing and praise our wonderful God in Sunday fellowship! There’s nothing better than that! Only problem is we still can’t gather all together in one place and do it. But that’s just a minor setback since those few of us who want to go to church now can, and the rest of us will just continue what we’ve been doing for the last five or six months, worshipping together virtually. How can they stop us when the Lord God is our mainstay eh? No way! 

But enough talk, let’s get to some praise and worship nuh. And today’s hymn is a very old but still popular one, titled ‘At the Cross.’ It was written by one of the great hymn writers, Isaac Watts (1674-1748), and some 100 years later the American choir leader Ralph E. Hudson (1843-1901) added the chorus and the inspiring tune that we now sing it to. According to one commentator, the chorus might have caused Watts hair to stand on end. (smile) And though not much seems to be known about the background story to this song, it does seem as though it inspired another great hymn writer, Fanny Crosby. 

According to her:”It was on November 2, 1850, that I was gloriously converted while the congregation sang the grand old consecration hymn of Isaac Watts. When they reached the 3rd line of the last verse: ‘Here, Lord, I give myself away,’ I surrendered myself to my Savior, and my soul was flooded with celestial light. I sprang to my feet shouting, ‘Hallelujah!’ I gave my heart to Him, and what a Joy I received!” – from the website hymnal-net. Just one more mysterious way in which our Lord moves in the lives of His people; inspiring Fanny Crosby with the words of Isaac Watts. 

So let’s sing it now in an easy rocking, soulful style, and let it inspire us to keep the joy of our Saviour in our hearts and lives. And to help us do that, we’ll begin with the chorus which rocks more than the verse. (smile) (Chorus: ‘At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day!) Alas, and did my Savior bleed? And did my Sovereign die? Would He devote that sacred head For sinners such as I? 

(Chorus…) Thy body slain, sweet Jesus, Thine – And bathed in its own blood – While the firm mark of wrath divine, His Soul in anguish stood. (Chorus…) Was it for sins that I had done He groaned upon the tree? Amazing pity! grace unknown! And love beyond degree! (Chorus…) Well might the sun in darkness hide, And shut His glories in, When Christ, the mighty Maker, died For man, His creature’s sin. 

(Chorus…) Thus might I hide my blushing face While His dear cross appears. Dissolve my heart in thankfulness, And melt mine eyes to tears. (Chorus…) But drops of grief can ne’er repay The debt of love I owe; Here, Lord, I give myself away, ’Tis all that I can do. At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day! Now I’m happy all the day…happy all the day…happy all the day…’ 

Oh friends, I do hope that we are indeed happy after singing those wonderful lyrics of absolute truth! If you’re not, then you had better check your faith, because with all that Christ did for us, when He sacrificed Himself on that old wooden cross at Calvary, believers ought to be not merely happy but exceedingly ecstatic! Remember what the Good Book says? ‘But God commendeth (demonstrated) his LOVE toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom. 5:8) 

Can you imagine that mih people, while we were the enemy of God, He sent His only Son to die in our place! That means we should be eternally grateful! And hear this nuh, while researching the song, I came upon the video of another song also titled ‘At the Cross,’ this one done by the Hillsong group, and brother if yuh see the bruised and battered state Jesus was in while dragging his cross up to Calvary, how he kept falling down under its weight and unwieldiness, then when they pounded the nails in his hands and lifted the cross up and dropped it in the hole…Steups! 

I couldn’t handle it nuh. I had to turn away. And no doubt by what we read in the Good Book, Jesus was in a real beat up state, all for our benefit. So if we can’t appreciate His supreme sacrifice on our part, then something really wrong with us yes. 

And Peter tells us in no uncertain terms, when he talks about the example of Christ’s suffering. ‘For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted (beaten) for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with (commendable before) God. For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile (deceit) found in his mouth: 

Who when he was reviled, reviled not again (in return); but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: By whose stripes (wounds) ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop (Overseer) of your souls.’ (1 Pet. 3:20-25) 

Yes mih people, if anybody should know about Christ is Peter, who walked with Him for three years on this earth and was an eye-witness to all he’s written. And if it doesn’t move you, or you just don’t believe, then there’s no more that I can say, because following Jesus is a personal decision. And I’m going to follow Him, to the best of my ability, hoping that the members of my household will do likewise. Much LOVE!

…Christians should be the happiest people on the planet…because heaven is eternal their home…