Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 July 2021 Romans 8:35a.

Romans 8:35a.     Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ?

It’s the mid-week rest period – Wednesday- when we catch our second wind to ready us for the homestretch. And someday, hopefully soon, the four-day workweek that people are now clamouring for will be a reality. Now, that would certainly make the workweek less ominous and frightening. (smile) It would also give us more free time. But please consider the other side of the coin; if you work less, you will also earn less, and that might not fit well with your financial situation. So please, let’s be careful of what we wish for, because ofttimes the reality of the situation is totally different to its theoretical side. 

But here is something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that offers blessed assurance from the vicissitudes, the vagaries of life. It’s titled ‘Romans 8…to Me.’ Please pray with me. ‘God I may fall flat on my face I may fall until I feel Old and beaten and done in Yet Your LOVE for me is changeless. All the music may go out of my life My private world may shatter to dust Even so You will hold me In the palm of Your steady hand. 

No turn in the affairs Of my fractured life Can baffle You. Satan with all his braggadocio Cannot distract You. NOTHING can separate me from Your measureless LOVE. Pain can’t Disappointments can’t Anguish can’t. Yesterday, today, tomorrow can’t. The loss of my dearest LOVE can’t. Death can’t. Life can’t. Riots war insanity unidentity Hunger neurosis disease – None of these things Nor all of them heaped together Can budge the fact That I am dearly LOVED. Completely forgiven And forever free Through Jesus Christ Your BELOVED Son.’ 

Oh friends, what a powerful and totally true statement! If we believe in Christ Jesus, NOTHING in this world can ever cause us to lose the LOVE of our heavenly Father! Wow! That ought to be ever so reassuring and encouraging to those of us who know Christ as Lord and Saviour. And where does all this reassurance and encouragement come from? From the Good Book obviously… from Romans Chapter 8, as our poem declares. Let’s read exactly what the passage about separation from God says nuh. 

‘Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For Thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the LOVE of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ (Rom. 8:35-39)

Yes, precious people of God, those are all undeniable facts and divine truth that Bruh Paul is writing there to the church at Rome and subsequently to us. As believers in Christ, we are inseparable from the LOVE of God! Nothing this world can throw at us will ever do it. Now here the scholars tell it. ‘8:38-39. We cannot be separated from God’s LOVE, because it is set forth in a person who is God Himself. Jesus Christ, our Saviour. God’s desire to redeem believers cannot be frustrated, because He is infinitely greater than any potential enemy. His plan will be realized because it is His purpose (cf. vs. 28).’ 

And that’s the living truth! But unfortunately, too many of us believers don’t seem to believe that God is greater than any enemy the world can cause to rise up against us. That’s why we cringe and eventually bow down to the evil of this world. That’s why Jesus would sadly accuse us: ‘O thou of little faith!’ We talk a good talk, but when the chickens come home to roost, it’s an entirely different story; we falter, and then crumble under the reality of the situation. And no one’s saying that living a meaningful life for Christ is easy, but what’s the point, if as soon as the tough times come, we scatter and run like sheep eh? 

And very often, it doesn’t even take the real tough times to scatter us, but merely some simple recurring difficulty. Unfortunately, too many supposed believers today fall into the second and third categories of Jesus’ parable about the sower sowing seed. ‘Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith (immediately) they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth. And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprung up, and choked them.’ (Matt. 13:5-7) 

Obviously those two categories are not good my people, because the seed never grows to maturity, blossoms and bears fruit. Now listen to Jesus’ explanation of those two categories. ‘But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon (immediately) with joy receiveth it. Yeh hath he no root in himself, but dureth (endures) for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended (immediately he stumbles). He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word, and the care (cares) of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.’ (Matt. 13:20-22) 

And the scholars define those two categories thus: ‘13:20-23. The stony places are shallow-hearted individuals who anon (at once) receive (outwardly) the message with joy. This emotional convert is not truly born again, for hath he not root and withers away. The one who is among the thorns (cares of this world) is the carnal, worldly convert, who never really breaks with his past. Worldliness and materialism choke the word in his life, and he is finally unfruitful (unsaved).’ 

Ah mih people, what Christianity desperately needs today to conquer the power and territorial superiority of the enemy is a bushel of what Jesus described as: ‘But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some a hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.’ (Matt. 13:8) And He explained that part of the parable thus: ‘But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it, which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth (produces), some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.’ (Matt. 13:23) 

And the scholars follow up with this: ‘The one who received seed in the good ground is the one who both heard the word and understood it, which also beareth fruit (evidence of true conversion). While such evidence may vary in its amount, all true believers will produce some fruit.’ 

Oh friends, do we ever need more believers bearing fruit in these troubled times. It’s not so much a matter of how much fruit we bear, but that we do bear some good fruit! The world and its cares are robbing us of the good and abundant life Christ died for us to have, so please, let’s try and turn this thing around nuh. We can, if we sincerely try. And remember, with Christ in our lives, we can do all things, because He strengthens us. 

Now let’s go home declaring (awright!!!) 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 as we do that, let’s remember that if we endure to the end, that future will be even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…Christians make a great difference…when they bear good fruit…                                                                                             

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 October 2014 1 Corinthians 9:24

1 Corinthians 9:24.   Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run that ye may obtain.

Wednesday…oh Wednesday…you’re my ‘renewer’…my lifeline…!

Yes Friends, it’s a big Wednesday morning! That means we’re halfway home; we have won the first two rounds of the workweek battle… Glory Hallelujah!

So please don’t give up now. Don’t even think about letting go! Instead, it’s time for us to take stock, like a marathon runner, to catch our second wind, and put on a brilliant dash to the finish line that’s Friday! And all God’s people said a loud and hearty ‘Amen!’

Ah mih breddren, we need to be very thankful that we’ve been allowed to see another sunrise, because it means God’s plan for our lives isn’t over as yet. He still has a purpose for us to complete, His plan is still in full swing since we haven’t yet accomplished what He’s set forward for us to accomplish.

Therefore, we need to be trusting, faithful, energetic, courageous, bold and confident in the promises of our magnificent and magnanimous God, for there’s NO other like Him in this great universe!  

As our Bit so wisely reminds us: ‘Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.’

Yes Friends, we need to run our race of life with plenty vim and vigour, so that we may obtain that awesome victory which awaits us at the end.

And the scholars give us some background info into what Bruh Paul was referring to. ‘9:24. Paul draws on a scene familiar to his Corinthian readers in order to drive home his point. The Isthmian Games were an athletic event known to all his readers.

They were held on alternate summers in the vicinity of Corinth. It was an event not to be missed by anyone of importance in all parts of Greece. As a national institution, it was as familiar to his readers as modern football to most Americans.’

Oh mih people, the race of life is never an easy one. In the first place it’s often a marathon-like adventure, spread over a long period of time, and certainly strewn with all sorts of pitfalls, pratfalls, options of different paths and untold kinds of obstruction along the way, stuff that wants to discourage, depress and deflate us and get us to quit in mid-stream.

But please remember that that awful word ‘quit,’ doesn’t exist in a believer’s vocabulary. And besides, we have the antidote for that rotten, wearisome word right at hand, as our great God and Guide has caused it be so eloquently written in our earthly Guidebook, the Bible!

‘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.

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher (originator and 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. For consider him that endured such contradiction (hostility) of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint (discouraged) in your minds (souls).’ (Heb.12:1-3)

Yes my people, we have to buckle down now and do what is necessary to run the race of life with excellence and finish with style, as Jesus desires of us. And at those times when we falter or stumble, as we all will do, we need to look to our supreme champion, Jesus Christ, for guidance and strength, for He is also our most worthy example of successfully running this earthly race.

And as we just read, He is indeed ‘the author and finisher of our faith.’ He began our faith by running His earthly race with outstanding conviction and sense of purpose, combined with loads of perseverance and endurance. As the scholars declare: ‘He has already blazed the trail and finished the course.’

The author of Hebrews also boosts our confidence earlier on as he tells us: ‘Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him; Called of God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek.’ (Heb.5:8-10)

And though we will never have all the parts that He possessed, per His being the incarnate Son of God, we can nonetheless rest assured that He WILL enable us to run our race with the same winning qualities and meet us at the finish line with a radiant smile, a big bear hug, a warm kiss, and sincere words of…

‘Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.’ (Matt.25:21)

Now NOTHING will ever surpass that glorious moment my fellow believers!

So, starting today, right now, let’s get out there and run our race of life with power and confidence nuh, so that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ will be magnified and glorified, as He so richly and justly deserves! That’s the wisdom of Almighty God! Much LOVE!

…to run…to run…and yet to run…even when the spirit seems to be tiring and wants to stop…by looking unto Jesus…the author and finisher of our faith…our supreme champion…

 

 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 May 2014 Jeremiah 5:23

Jeremiah 5:23. But this people hath a revolting and rebellious heart; they are revolted and gone (departed).

And then it was Wednesday; the middle of the week already! Wow! 
 
How we doing mih people? We’re halfway there, so please don’t falter, don’t give up now. Today is the day to catch our second wind. 
 
Like the marathon runner, who halfway to the finish line, finds his breath and strength faltering, let’s take a deep breath, then boldly declare: ‘Let’s go Jesus! It’s you and me against the world! And I know that once You are in my corner, that we are a majority, and can’t be beaten by anybody, ever!’ 
 
Yes Friends, with Jesus walking beside, before and behind us, we are invincible, like one of those impregnable fortresses of old. I guess that’s why Bruh David continually referred to Him as his rock, his fortress and his high tower. 
 
There’s a certain strength, power, awesomeness and magnificence inherent in not only the name of Jesus, but also in His abilities, which we will do well not to forget. 
 
Unfortunately though my fellow believers, those of us who can feel that impregnable and invincible aura and spirit seem to be in the minority these days, as most of our world is better described by our Bit: ‘But this people hath a revolting and rebellious heart; they are revolted and gone (departed).’ 
 
How sad and heart-rending my brethren, that most of God’s supposed greatest creation have returned to an ungodly time, as did the nation of Israel in Jeremiah’s day! 
 
Listen to the description of those ungodly times: ‘Neither say they in their heart, Let us now fear the Lord our God, that giveth rain, both the former and the latter, in his season: he reserveth unto us the appointed weeks of the harvest. Your iniquities have turned away these things, and your sins have withholden good things from you. 
 
For among my people are found wicked men: they lay (lie in) wait, as he that setteth snares; they set a trap, they catch men. As a cage is full of birds, so are their houses full of deceit: therefore they are become great, and waxen (grown) rich. 
 
They are waxen (have grown) fat, they shine (are sleek): yea, they overpass (surpass) the deeds of the wicked: they judge (plead) not the cause, the cause of the fatherless, yet they prosper; and the right of the needy do they not judge (defend). 
 
Shall I not visit (punish) for these things? saith the Lord: shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this? 
 
A wonderful (astonishing) and horrible thing is committed in the land; The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means (rule by their own power); and my people LOVE to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?’ (Jer.5:24-31) 
 
Ah mih breddren, mih breddren! How sad and disgusting! And as I said yesterday, those words so aptly and thoroughly describe our current society, that it seems as though the prophet Jeremiah is within our midst penning our awful sinfulness. 
 
And we’ll just share a very interesting note from the scholars’ on one of those verses. ‘5:30. Judah’s sin is so exceedingly evil that it is being described as being appallingly horrible and staggeringly wonderful (wondered at in shocked disbelief).’ 
 
That ought to give us some idea of how terrible, how ungodly the situation was back then in Judah. And yuh know, the saying that history repeats itself, is proving to be ever so true in this case. We’re behaving just like Judah did in those sorry and sinful times. 
 
And I daresay worse, because some of the sin, perversity, immorality and disgusting behaviour that we are currently propagating, flaunting and revelling in, were unknown back then. Ah Lord eh! 
 
I’m sure that even the most perverted and sinful in those olden times, would be greatly astonished and perplexed at the extremely high levels to which we’ve taken sin and disobedience to God. 
 
But Friends, as we said above, history often repeats itself, and thus, if we’re behaving like Judah did, then isn’t it logical to expect that we’ll also suffer a fate akin to theirs – namely destruction, captivity and exile from our homeland? 
 
And we all know the words that that astute sleuth Sherlock Holmes would have replied in answer to that question: ‘Elementary, my dear Watson!’ 
 
And it is an elementary bit of logic Friends! But sadly, despite the supposed advances in our level of intelligence and otherwise over the intervening years, we’ve become too proud and egotistical, believing that those advances were all our own doing. 
 
Thus we can’t see the proverbial trees for the forest before us, (or is it the other way around – smile) and we consider history as merely a dead thing of the past, which can’t happen to us again. But my people, I have news for us; history is alive and kicking, just like our great God! 
 
And as the Rasta breddren that once taught me History back in High School, many moons ago, was wont to so wisely note, as he put his ‘brogued’ feet on the desk, stroked his scruffy beard with his right hand and deeply intoned: ‘What is History? History is a lesson of the past. And why do we learn History? So that we can understand the present and the future!’ 
 
And that’s gospel truth my fellow believers! But just like so many of us, who either refuse to read the Bible, or simply don’t believe it, the same way we’re making fools of ourselves by not paying sufficiently close attention to the very important, indelible and irreversible facts of History! 
 
Oh my brethren, I’m pleading with us today, please, please, let’s not be like those who have gone before us, ignoring the facts of history. But instead, let’s be wiser and pay serious attention to the repeated history of mankind, sorry though it may be, and also give greater attention to God’s Word found in His Holy Bible. 
 
That is wisdom of the heavenly kind, which we so badly need nowadays, and which is the only thing that will save us from destruction, like the ungodly, disobedient nations of old. 
 
Therefore, today, let’s contemplate, let’s seriously ponder those last words of our scripture passage: ‘and what will ye do in the end thereof?’ Now that’s the most important question, we need to answer. Much LOVE!
 
…how many times does Jesus have to say it eh… before we listen…he that hath an ear…let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches…He says it several times in Revelation…please check it out…and LISTEN…