Today’s Scrip-Bit   21 September 2022 Matthew 5:9.

Matthew 5:9.       Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children (sons) of God.

Brother, oh brother! What a morning! More costly interruptions than yesterday…but at least these were legitimate. (smile) We ordered some stuff and it came earlier than we expected, so I had to spend time checking it out to make sure it was what we had ordered, because in this flim flam world of new commerce and employee disregard for good service, more often than not you don’t get exactly what you ordered. 

Thankfully, it seems to be what we had ordered, and the Duchess is happy. Now that’s the most important thing; the Duchess’ contentment with her purchase. And though the saying that a happy wife makes a happy life, isn’t always true, yuh better believe that an unhappy wife does make for an unhappy life. (smile) 

Enough of my sob story though, let’s see what the Lord will have us write about today. And as I opened the Good Book, it fell at the Beatitudes in Matthew; those attributes that Jesus spoke of that characterize a saved person. After looking through them, it struck me that the one we most need in our world right now is: ‘Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children (sons) of God.’ (Matt. 5:9) And do we ever desperately need peacemakers in this current warmongering, strife filled, angry and hate consumed world! 

It’s so much easier to name the few places in our world that are not currently strife-filled, than to name those where strife is rampant. It’s so very sad to see the numerous places, where brother is at odds with brother, even to the level of internecine war, that’s serious internal destruction and displacement. There are more refugees in our world now than ever before, because every day more unfortunate people are being displaced by strife-filled actions and activities. 

And there are so many Bible verses that preach the importance of peace in Christ’s people and kingdom, that it’s ever so sad to see so many of His supposed believers and followers blatantly ignore them in favour of anger, hatred and strife. Let’s take a look at a few of those scriptures nuh, and see if they can bring us back to the overwhelming importance of peace in Christ’s affairs. 

And this first one from Psalm 34, says it all my brethren. Bruh David writes in the fullness of God: ‘What man is he that desireth life, and LOVETH many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile (deceit). Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.’ (Ps. 34:12-14) 

Oh my people, peace doesn’t just come to us, we have to do the things that cause or bring peace, like stopping the flow of evil in our lives, and then consciously seeking peace and pursuing it! We have to run down peace if we truly want it. That’s possibly because our human nature isn’t naturally one that tends to peace, but more towards evil and strife. 

And Bruh Paul wrote it thus to the church at Rome. ‘Let not then your good be evil spoken of. For the kingdom of God is not meat (food) and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. For he that in these things serveth Christ is acceptable to God, and approved of men. Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify (build up) another.’  (Rom. 14:16-19) Yes friends, God’s people are enjoined to do the things that make for peace, not for strife. How much clearer can it get eh? 

Meanwhile, Peter, in his advice re the behaviour of wives and husbands, writes in heartfelt passion. ‘Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, LOVE as brethren, be pitiful (tenderhearted), be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing (reviling) for railing (reviling): but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye should inherit a blessing.’ (1 Pet. 3:8-9) Then he goes on to quote Bruh David in Psalm 34 as we’ve done above. 

It’s oh so obvious my fellow believers that peace, kindness and brotherly LOVE is of the utmost importance in Christ’s world. Just listen to what the fruit of Christ’s Spirit breeds nuh: ‘LOVE, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control. (Gal. 5:22) Wow! There’s absolutely no strife, anger or hatred involved in it! So why are we being so envious, angry, resentful, hateful and deceitful to our brothers in Christ eh…and even to our own brothers and sisters by blood? 

Because the devil has invaded our spirits. We have allowed him to gain strongholds in our minds and lives, believing his atrocious lies and deceits. And the author of Hebrews tells us quite clearly that’s not how we ought to behave. Listen up to some of his warning on disobedience…and basically that’s what allows the devil to get his evil grip on us. 

‘Wherefore lift up (strengthen) the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way (dislocated); but let it rather be healed. Follow (pursue) peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord. Looking diligently lest any man fail (fall short) of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled.’ (Heb. 12:12-15) 

Ah mih people, I know life here on earth is not a bed of roses, it’s not an easy experience, and like the scholars say’ some of us ‘have grown so weary that we have become stooped and need spiritual strength to be straightened up again. We must be given help, yet we ourselves also must straighten our paths by avoiding obstacles that would spiritually trip us up.’ 

And is that ever so true. The easiest way to stay sinless is to avoid those things and areas we know that have sinful power over us. We all have weaknesses, and to improve or conquer them, it’s very necessary to take them to Almighty God for help. That’s the only way we’ll ever overcome them, or at least keep them in check. 

Now listen to some more of Bruh Paul’s words to the church at Rome. ‘Recompense (repay) to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest (have regard to good things) in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in (depends on) you, live peaceably with all men. …Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.’ (Rom. 12:17-18. 21) 

And we couldn’t end without these majestic verses of scripture on peace, directly from Christ’s lips. ‘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) Then there’s this even better one. ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

Glory be mih people! What wonderful words of inspiration and encouragement! And if you choose not to accept them, then that’s your problem. You will suffer the anxiety, fear and worry that comes from not accepting Jesus’ encouragement. However, for those of us who accept and believe it, let’s go home declaring (oh yeahhh!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful 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 just a li’l more encouragement my fellow saints. If we endure to the very end, then that future will be even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine. So, see you at the end. (smile) Much LOVE!

…the peace of God…which passeth all understanding…shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds…through Jesus Christ… (Phil. 4:7)   

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 January 2020 1 Peter 3:11.

1 Peter 3:11.    ​Let him eschew (turn away from) evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue (pursue) it.
 
And as the day opens, a whole lot of people around the world emit sighs of relief because it’s that magical day called Friday, when their outside labour will end for a couple of days and they won’t have to face snarled, slow-moving traffic twice a day, and engage in mindless chit-chat with selfish, ignorant co-workers whom they thoroughly dislike! (smile) 

Ah friends, what an evil and deceitful world we live in! And the sad part is that it’s getting worse daily. All the negative stuff that’s currently happening in our world is just creating more tension, anxiety and strife between hitherto comfortable people. But all that us true believers in Christ can basically do is pray for world peace and then do our best to pursue it in our families, friends and neighbourhoods! 

And since it’s Friday, we ought to hear what the ordinary workingman has to say for himself. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes! And am I ever grateful for the two days off! I forgot how hard work could really be. Yeh, now that the new year has truly gotten rolling, the work is pouring in and the slave driving task master we have is flashing the whip often because the more work we do means more money for him. And yes, we do get a little more too, but nothing like what he gets, and certainly not in proper proportion to the amount of work we do to create the extra money… 

But I guess them’s the breaks! It’s how the greedy massa and them build the society – the people who do all the back breaking work, get the smallest amount of the harvest. And to tell the truth, in all the different systems we have in the world, one thing stands out…the handful of people who run the show, always get the best part of the pie! Regardless of how much revolution yuh have, it always end up like that. And right now, I too old to fight it anymore, so I’ll just put mih gear in cruise, and just bide mih time till I retire, and until then keep saying, ‘Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Now that’s the unfortunate reaction of a great number of people in our down-pressed world today, and sometimes you can’t give them wrong because they do seem to be fighting a losing battle. However, as true believers in Christ Jesus we don’t have to accept that defeatist philosophy, because in Christ there’s NO giving up. In fact, He has already won the victory and all we now have to do is walk it through in diligent faith and preordained works. That’s why our Friday Chant is so different from the workingman’s song. 

So let’s chant it now nuh, in strong voice and sincere hearts, so that we can be encouraged this Friday morning. ‘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!’ 

You see my faithful brethren, whatever it looks like, and however life turns out, we believers need to keep on keeping on, fixated on the promises and sacrificial work of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, always looking forward to His wonderful  coming in glory, sometime soon, any day now! In the meantime though, one thing we should all be seeking is that very real, but very elusive thing called peace, because it is a very important part of Christ’s kingdom. 

Now let’s look at some of the many scriptures in the Good Book that call for the making of peace. The first one is the prophecy of John the Baptist’s father, Zechariah re John’s work. ‘To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.’ (Luke 1:79) And if a big part of John’s work was to guide us in the way of peace, and John was the forerunner of Christ, then it means that peace was also a big part of Christ’s ministry. 

And He made that clear often enough. One of the Beatitudes, those 8 states of mind and heart  that Christ said was absolutely necessary for Christian discipleship in the Sermon on the Mount is: ‘Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.’ (Matt.5:9) Yes friends, blessed are those who seek peace and make peace and are at peace with God and man. And Peter makes it quite clear that if we want to have a good, long life: ‘Let him eschew (turn away from) evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue (pursue) it.’ Yuh see people, we have to make a definite decision and action; pursue peace. It doesn’t just come by desiring it, we have to make it happen! 

And I’m chuckling and a tad confused because I have so many scriptures on peace I don’t know which to share because of our time and space constraints. (smile) But since we can’t ever go wrong with Jesus, listen to Him again. ‘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) Yuh see that, Jesus’ peace is an entirely different kind of peace to what we find in the world. His is the kind that surpasses man’s understanding! (Phil. 4:7) And if we’re smart, we’ll diligently seek for His kind and not the world’s. 

And Hebrews so wisely tells us: ‘Follow (pursue) peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.’ (Heb.12:14) Then James proudly proclaims: ‘And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.’ (James 3:18) Yeh friends, peace is one of the fruits of the Spirit, and you can’t get it unless you sow it. And what better way to end than with one of Jesus’ better known sayings on peace. ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

Oh friends with those encouraging words ringing in our hearts and minds, let’s go out today and in our own li’l way pursue peace nuh, because that’s the only way our world will ever improve! Much LOVE!

…as much as possible…follow peace with all men…