Today’s Scrip-Bit   28 September 2021   1 Corinthians 1:9.

1 Corinthians 1:9.      God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

What’s happening this new day filled with new compassions and mercies eh friends? And I know that most of us would say: same old, same old stuff. And to a certain extent that might be true, but just think that we are still alive and kicking, the marvellous breath of God is still flowing through us! Glory be! That means there are still lots of things for us to do down here on earth, otherwise the Lord would have taken us home. 

And you know that living and working for God is not easy, but it sure is chocked full of excitement and adventure, because we never know what He will do next, where He will send us or what He will allow to come upon us. The only thing we are sure of is that He won’t allow anything untoward to happen to us, and that He will bring us safely through any storms He allows us to go through. 

Remember His awesome promise in First Corinthians… ‘There hath no temptation taken (overtakes) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able to bear; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear (endure) it.’ (1 Cor. 10:13). Now that promises a lot my brethren, but it also does not promise what some of us believe and/or expect. 

What we ought to learn from that is not that the Lord will always help us to escape the temptation, but rather He will give us a way to bear up under or endure it. Too many of us just want to escape from anything that’s difficult, but that’s not the way our God operates. Yuh don’t think that Jesus wanted to escape from all the horrific sufferation he went through? He certainly did! 

But the Father asked Him to suffer on our behalf and gave Him the grace, strength and power to bear up and endure the inhumane treatment He underwent for us. The Holy Spirit imbued Him with the power to handle it, and the same Holy Spirit imbues us with power to handle our problems. So, let’s stop thinking about ways to escape problems and instead forge ahead and come up over them through the power of the Holy Spirit. 

As one commentator, Vern Nicolette, puts it in an article on the subject found on the Active Christianity website. ‘In 1 Corinthians 10:13 it speaks about the time of temptation and that God makes a way of escape so we can bear it. How hopeful it is that we have a God who measures each temptation so we can bear it! God has a way of escape for us in every single temptation. The way of escape is to go before the throne of grace and pray for grace in time of need; in other words, before we fall. Then we have God’s promise that we shall receive the grace, which is strength and help at the right time, so we can stand after we have overcome all things.’ 

And the author references two scriptures there; Hebrews 4:16, and Ephesians 6:13. And since I like to spoon feed us, (smile) here are those two scriptures. The first one says: ‘Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’ (Heb. 4:16) And the second comforting and strengthening verse of scripture in times of need is this: ‘Wherefore take unto you (take up, put on) the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.’ (Eph. 6:13) 

Yes friends, those are the two basic things we need to withstand the demonic onslaughts that occasionally come against us: the grace and armour of God! And with those working on our behalf, through the empowering Holy Spirit, Satan doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of defeating us! Now here are some more scriptures that will help us in our fight against temptation. Up first is this beautiful scripture: ‘God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (1 Cor. 1:9) I like that verse because it tells me of God’s faithfulness, and that’s something I’ve totally experienced in my own life, so it boosts my spirit. 

And the next scripture comes from Psalm 125 – God surrounds his people. It confidently declares: ‘They that trust in the Lord shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed (moved), but abideth for ever. As the mountains are round about (surround) Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people from henceforth even for ever. For the rod of the wicked (the sceptre of wickedness) shall not rest upon the lot (land) of the righteous; lest the righteous put forth (reach out ) their hands unto iniquity.’ (Ps. 125:1-3) 

And here are two more scriptures to sustain those last two. (smile) Isaiah tells us in no uncertain terms: ‘The Lord hath broken the staff of the wicked, and the sceptre of the rulers.’ (Is. 14:5) And Cousin Sol confidently proclaims from the wisdom of Proverbs: ‘He that soweth iniquity shall reap vanity (trouble): and the rod of his anger shall fail (wrath shall perish).’ (Prov. 22:8) 

Now that further recalls the rebuke of Eliphaz to his friend Job, where he says: ‘Remember, I pray thee, who ever perished being innocent? Or where were the righteous cut off? Even as I have seen, they that plow iniquity, and sow wickedness, reap the same. By the blast of God they perish, and by the breath of his nostrils (anger) are they consumed.’ (Job 4:7-9) 

And though Eliphaz didn’t know about Job’s unique situation, he knew from personal experience that we reap what we sow., which is the living truth, just not in Job’s case. So though there may seem to be a lot of problems, temptations and enemy attacks in our lives, let us not forget that the Lord God Almighty has placed within us the power of His Holy Spirit to enable us to fight our earthly battles and be victorious in all of them. But we must get His grace and put on His spiritual armour if we want to win the spiritual battles that take place in our lives. End of sermon! (smile) 

Now for those of us who are sincerely trying to live for God, let’s go home declaring (yeah!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who we belong to. In strong voice: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world. Amen!’ 

And having said that, we must now go out and share that amazing LOVE and friendship of Christ with others, so that they too can come to know Him. For that’s His greatest desire. Much LOVE!

…I have been young…and now I am old…yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken…nor his seed begging bread… (Ps. 37:5)                                                                                                                             

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 March 2021 1 Corinthians 10:13a.

1 Corinthians 10:13a.     ​There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful,

Come on friends, it’s time to stop singing the new work week Monday Blues and rise to the level that Jesus desires of us. That means, be the circumstances rough or smooth, our attitude will be bright and positive and Christ-like! Awright! So that’s not so easy to do, especially in these pandemic times, but what else yuh going to do eh? Will a bad, sour or resentful attitude help any? No, it will just make matters worse. And besides, if you’re a follower of Jesus, then you need to have the attitude that He had, and try to behave like He would behave…And that’s certainly not sad, miserable, sour or resentful! 

Oh precious people, it’s not that we don’t need Jesus in the good times, for then we can probably get by on our own steam, though not live the abundant life He promised. But it’s in the times that we’re caught between a rock and a hard place, damned if we do and damned if we don’t, like now, that we truly need Him most. For ofttimes, He is the only one who can extricate us from those painful and hurting situations. And even if He chooses, for whatever reason, not to extricate us from them, then He will enable us, give us the wherewithal to handle them with a good attitude, and thus grow and mature from the experience. 

Remember Bruh Paul’s warning of Israel being a good example of a disobedient attitude in the wilderness. ‘Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape that ye may be able to bear it.’ (1 Cor. 10:12-13) Now that’s a very important scripture friends, and a very misunderstood one. 

And I like this explanation from Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers, found on the Bible Hub website. ‘(13) There hath no temptation taken you.–What is meant by a “temptation common to man” (or rather, suited to man) is explained further on as a temptation which one is “able to bear.” From the warning and exhortation of the previous verse the Apostle passes on to words of encouragement, “You need not be hopeless or despairing.” God permits the temptation by allowing the circumstances which create temptation to arise, but He takes care that no Fate bars the path of retreat. 

With each temptation he makes a way to escape from it. And that is so, must be so, because God is faithful. The state of salvation to which God has called us would be a delusion if there were an insuperable difficulty to our continuing in it. We have in this verse, perhaps, the most practical and therefore the clearest exposition to be found of the doctrine of free-will in relation to God’s overruling power. God makes an open road, but then man himself must walk in it. God controls circumstances, but man uses them. That is where his responsibility lies.’ 

So God provides all the tools, there are always options for us, but it’s our responsibility to find them and walk in them. Oh friends, the basic idea of the epistle is that God is faithful, as Bruh Paul states in the beginning. ‘God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (1 Cor. 1:9) 

As the scholars explain. ‘1:9. Unto the fellowship of his son: The term fellowship includes both union and communion. The Corinthian believers had been brought into union with the Lord Jesus Christ. Accordingly, this great truth implies that they had been brought into communion with one another. Here in a nutshell is the theme of this epistle.’ 

Yes my people, it’s all about fellowship, about fellowship with God and with each other. But are we living in true fellowship with either God or each other eh? Sadly, the answer is no, not nearly enough as required. And that brings to mind these appropriate words of Bruh David from Psalm 133 – The joy of Brotherhood. ‘How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! ‘ (Ps. 133:1) And that friends is the basic reason why our world is in such a mess; we’re not living in true fellowship with either God or man. 

So, no wonder all our efforts to clean it up are failing. It’s only when we get serious about our relationship with God and our fellow man are we ever going to have a harmonious world. So let’s take that first step right now nuh, by going to God in prayer, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn and letting Him know that at long last we are serious about changing our sinful ways. 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 many natural disasters that now seem more prevalent than ever. 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!’ 

So the ball is in our court now people. We need to show the Lord that we are serious about what we just prayed, and we can only do so with changed behaviour. And until we do, nothing much will improve. Much LOVE!

…it’s time to throw aside unprofitable sin…and dwell together in unity…