Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 May 2018 Isaiah 1:19.

Isaiah 1:19.   If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land.

And then it was Wednesday; the midway point of the work week… And we’re getting a li’l bit earlier everyday with the Bit. (smile) Hope within the next few days we’ll be back to an early morning Bit. And when are we going to dance the Maypole eh people? Wonder if some of the young people even know what that is. 

It’s a celebration for the month of May. You have a tall decorated flagpole with long ribbon streamers attached at the top, and then everybody takes a ribbon and dances around it to form an intricate pattern all the way down the pole. I remember going to May fairs as a boy in High School, but usually thinking myself too macho to dance the maypole. That was something for girls. 

Now here is a li’l something from Matt Chandler, lead Pastor of the Village Church, a Southern Baptist Church in Texas. He tells us that ‘God is awesome. He doesn’t need us to be awesome. He needs us to be obedient.’ And isn’t that the gospel truth friends? 

All our magnanimous and magnificent God really wants from us is obedience to His law. If we’d only practice greater obedience, we’d be surprised at how blessed we’d truly be. But we insist on choosing our own areas of obedience. However my brethren, our God wants total obedience from His people. Not some obedience here, and some obedience there, like a hodgepodge of obedience and disobedience. 

And friends, the Lord made His intentions clear a long time ago to the Israelites through the prophet Isaiah in our Bit. ‘If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land.’ That’s fairly simple and straightforward eh my fellow believers. 

And the corollary to that is the next verse: ‘But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.’ (Is.1:20) And it’s not like the Israelites, who were found to be disobedient several times did not suffer by the sword and all kinds of pestilence. 

I don’t know why we think that the Lord isn’t going to keep His word. He kept it with the Israelites and He’s going to keep it with us too, as our disobedience level is riding sky high. Can’t we see all the unusual things that are happening in our society? And even though we’re the most advanced civilization ever, we’re still flailing along in a mire of poverty, sickness, greed and poor relationships. 

A lot of our trouble stems from our disobedience. The Lord is not going to allow us to continue the way we’re currently going forever, so we need to smarten up as soon as possible, if we want to get out of the quicksand that we’re slowly drowning in. 

Now let’s look at some important scriptures that tell us about obedience. And we’ll begin at the beginning, with the words of Bruh Paul to the Roman church. ‘For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.’ (Rom.5:19). 

Yeh friends, by Adam’s disobedience in the Garden of Eden, sin flooded the world, likewise by the sacrificial death of Jesus, on the cross at Calvary, grace, salvation, and eternal life were provided by our Lord to overcome the bondage of sin. 

And more words from Bruh Paul, this time to the Philippian church, pertaining to Jesus. ‘And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.’ (Phil.2:9) 

Oh my people, there’s no better example of obedience than our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!  Though He was God Himself, once He took the form of man, He didn’t try to boost His ego or importance here on earth, but gave total obedience to His heavenly father. Even when He tried to get out of going to the cross in the Garden of Gethsemane, He finally gave in and said, ‘not my will, but thine,’ acknowledging the Father’s supremacy. 

As Hebrews tells us: ‘Though he (Jesus) were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered. And being made perfect, he became the author of salvation unto all them that obey him.’ (Heb.5:8-10) Yeh people, Jesus learned obedience just like all of us do, through suffering, through adversity and trials. That’s the only way to learn it. And that’s why the Father elevated him to the highest position there is; the one to whom all knees will bow, and all voices will cry Lord to the glory of the Father. 

Now listen to this last scripture from Peter in his call to Christian dedication. ‘Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind (prepare your mind for action), be sober, and hope to the end for the grace (rest your hope fully upon the grace) that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 

As obedient children, not fashioning (conforming) yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance. But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation (conduct). Because it is written, Be ye holy, for I am holy.’’ (1 Pet.2:13-16) 

I can’t say anything more friends, except to lead us in our declaration of our Wednesday Wail, which tells the world our strong and obedient position in Christ. 

As one 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 we can’t even imagine how glorious that future will be, because our minds are too small and finite! Much LOVE!

…to obey is better than sacrifice…and to hearken than the fat of rams… (1 Sam.15:22b)

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 May 2015 Psalm 22:9 ‏‏‏‏‏‏‏‏‏

Psalm 22:9.   But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me HOPE (caused me to trust) when I was upon my mother’s breast.

And then it was Friday – the first day of May – May Day, May Day!
 
And the working population readily chimes in with: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday, and the weekend is here! Thank God it’s Friday yes! This has been a brutal week, and we do need the rest from slaving for massa.’
 
Now that might be so, but here’s another iron in the fire. Do you remember those May Day High School dances, the first Saturday in May, where we’d dance the maypole? If you do, then you are a real old-timer, but one filled with lots of wisdom and experience.
 
Ah Friends, it’s another glorious morning to be alive, brimming with the joy, LOVE, peace, mercy, grace, compassion and forgiveness that’s only to be found in Jesus Christ! Glory be to God!
 
Now here’s an interesting quote from Cervantes (Miguel Cervantes 1547-1616) the famous Spanish writer, whose novel Don Quixote, was supposedly the first novel to gain international acclaim. Anyway, Cervantes reputedly said that ‘Where there is music, there can be no evil.’
 
And that’s very true to a large extent, for when sweet music is bubbling forth from our hearts how can we ever imagine evil thoughts eh? Plus music lifts us out of our bad moods, out of our depression, and helps us forget our problems for a while. It’s also a special source of happiness that we can take with us wherever we go.
 
And I can personally vouch for all of that Friends, for music has been the mainstay, the constant companion of my many years on this earth. When Friends and family forsake you, music NEVER will. And hopefully it will continue to be my companion for the rest of my days, and even afterwards in heaven, where music and singing seem to be a big thing.
 
And since we seem to be into music this morning, let’s chant our Friday Chant nuh, with all the passion it deserves. ‘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.’
 
Yes my people, regardless of the day, the celebration or occasion, we need to have the right perspective on the weekend, if we’re going to be ready for Monday when it comes around. And that means being careful not to give Beelzebub even a toehold in our lives.
 
And one way to do that is through HOPE, the HOPE that is found in Jesus! For as Bruh David truthfully declares in our Bit: ‘But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me HOPE (caused me to trust) when I was upon my mother’s breast.’
 
Yes my people, our Creator wisely put that never give up emotion of HOPE in our hearts from the moment we were born! And we’d be very foolish to let it go out, disappear from our souls, for it’s our pilot light, the steady flame that keeps our mojo working at all times. (smile)
 
Now let’s see what great scriptures on the subject we can find in the Good Book to titillate our senses. And we’ll begin with an interesting verse from Ecclesiastes, where the Preacher informs us that: ‘For to him that is joined to all the living there is HOPE: for a living dog is better than a dead lion.’ (Eccl.9:4) I guess he is just saying what we believe, that while there is life there’s always HOPE.
 
Now listen to Jeremiah: ‘Truly in vain is salvation HOPED for from the hills, and from the multitude of mountains: truly in the Lord our God is the salvation of Israel.’ (Jer.3:23) Yes my brethren, ONLY from the Lord God Jehovah can salvation be HOPED for and truly found!
 
And the author of Psalm 119, the longest chapter in the Bible, has this to say on the subject. ‘Uphold me according unto thy word, that I may live: and let me not be ashamed of my HOPE. Hold thou me up (uphold me), and I shall be safe: and I will have respect unto thy statutes (observe thy statutes) continually.’ (Ps.119:116-117)
 
Oh my people our God will NEVER let us be ashamed of our HOPE in Him! That’s a forgone conclusion! All who HOPE in Him will be upheld with His powerful right hand! That’s His faithful promise!
 
But by the same token, we have our part to play in the relationship; to observe His statutes. And sadly that’s where the relationship usually breaks down. We want to have our HOPE upheld, but aren’t too keen on observing God’s commands. And that just can’t work Friends, for the relationship with God is a two way street, not just a one-way lane.
 
And we’ll end this series of messages on HOPE with a rather appropriate verse from Psalm 39, where Bruh David is praying for self-understanding. In the midst of his prayer, he loudly proclaims: ‘And now, Lord, what wait I for? My HOPE is in thee.’ (Ps.39:7)
 
Words of absolute truth and wisdom my fellow believers! Let’s keep that verse as a red flag always before us, so that we know why, and where our HOPE in this evil world comes from.
 
And I do HOPE that all we’ve said about HOPE in these past few days will continue to resonate and reverberate in our hearts, minds and bodies, so that we don’t lose our strength, faith and direction that’s to be found in our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Much LOVE my fellow believers!
 
…HOPE…it is the eternal channel…that keeps us tuned into…our Creator…the Most High God Jehovah…