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…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 May 2019 John 14:27.

John 14:27.   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.

 

And the rain fell with a vengeance, for much of the day! And it wasn’t the measly drizzle we’d been getting for the last li’l while, but full blown showers accompanied by booming claps of Thor’s thunder and threatening bolts of fiery lightning! The sun would come out for a li’l while and you’d think, ‘Yes, the rain’s over!’ But that would be a wasted thought, for shortly thereafter the rain would come pouring down again. Chuh! 

And that’s the worst kind of rainfall, because it just leaves you in limbo, never knowing what it’s going to do! But the good thing is that was yesterday, Saturday, today is Sunday, a different day completely, so let’s hope the weather will be different too. (smile) And it looks different, bright, but with some scudding clouds. 

But even if it’s the same, please, don’t let us allow it to stop us from gathering in the Lord’s sanctuary to celebrate His day, the Sabbath, to give Him praise and thanks, to hear His faithful and wonderful Word, and receive His enabling blessings, without which we can’t successfully navigate the storms and trials of this earthly life. And as always, we’ll begin the celebrations with a song of praise and worship to lighten our souls and prepare our hearts to hear His Word. 

And today’s song is a fairly new one, written in the second half of the 20th century, by one Artie Glenn, but was popularized by one Elvis Presley. So let’s get serious, soulful and sincere as we raise up our voices in praise and thanksgiving to heaven, through the words of ‘Crying In The Chapel’ It’s a soulful morning friends, so let’s feel it in our hearts and souls and trill as one harmonious songbird. (smile) 

‘You saw me crying in the chapel, The tears I shed were tears of joy, Now I know the meaning of contentment, And I’m happy with the Lord. Just a plain and simple chapel, Where humble people go to pray. I prayed the Lord that I’ll grow stronger, As I live from day to day. I’ve searched (I’ve searched) and I’ve searched, But I couldn’t find, No way on earth to gain peace of mind. 

But now I’m happy in the chapel, where people are of one accord (One accord). Yes, we gather in the chapel, Just to sing and praise the Lord. Oh you’ll search, and you’ll search, but you’ll never find, No way on earth to gain peace of mind. Take your troubles to the chapel, get down on your knees and pray, Then your burdens will be lighter, and you’ll surely find the way, Yes, you’ll surely find the way!’ 

People oh people! Such simple but heartrending words of absolute truth! Wow! And we sung it so sweetly that all heaven was moved to tears! Don’t you just like it when we move all heaven to tears? Of course, because it means that we’ve done something, touching, sincere and truthful! That calls for another ‘Wow!’ this auspicious Sunday morning. 

But on a serious note though, it’s certainly amazing how the sentiments in such a short and simple song could be so true. For example; the tears many of us shed when we go to church are usually ones of joy, because something happens within our souls and spirits and we’re lifted up, we become contented through the power of the Holy Spirit flowing through us and renewing and refreshing us. 

And yuh know what? We don’t have to go to no big cathedral to search for God and pray, because we’ll find Him just as well in a simple chapel, where the folks are humble, because that’s one of the requirements of coming to Him in prayer. And we not asking for a whole lot usually – well some of us are (smile) but simply to grow stronger each day as we live in the presence of God’s amazing grace. 

And yuh better believe that there is no other way of finding peace on this ungodly earth than through the auspices of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! That’s for sure! As He unambiguously told the disciples, and consequently us: ‘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.’ 

Yes friends, the peace we get from Jesus is nothing like what this world has to offer; it’s an out of this world kind of peace, that ONLY He possesses and ONLY He can bestow! And that’s why we end up being contented and cry tears of joy in the chapel! And the best piece of advice there is to take ALL your troubles to God’s sanctuary, or really anywhere quiet and convenient, get down on your knees and pray; unburden your heart before Him, and He will lift your burdens and show you the way. 

Just listen to Jesus as He makes this wonderful offer to ALL those who are weighed down and burdened nuh. We call it the Great Invitation: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek (gentle) and lowly (humble) in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt.11:28-30) 

How can you ever beat that offer eh friends? Nobody has ever offered anything even close to it. And yes, I do know that when things seem too good to be true, they usually are, but that’s in the lying and deceitful world of Satan, not in Jesus’ realm! He is God and has no cause to lie! And better still, He also has the power to perform whatever He promises! All praise and glory to His Holy Name! That’s why this song, ‘Crying in the Chapel’ is so perfect in its simplicity and truth! 

Oh how I wish more of us supposed believers would take hold of the simplicity of Jesus’ message and just run with them! It would make all of our lives so much easier. Our Lord and Saviour is not a complicated man, and His pronouncements are not complicated either. All He asks of us is to believe and obey! Is that so hard to do my people? Not at all! 

So this Sunday morning, let’s take a serious and sincere stand nuh promise ourselves to just live and work for Jesus, in whatever manner He desires of us! That’s the unadulterated, God-given wisdom of heaven, by which earth should be guided! Much LOVE!

…to whatever question you might ask…Jesus is the answer…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 July 2016 Psalm 142:1.

Psalm 142:1.     I cried unto the Lord with my voice; with my voice unto the Lord did I make my supplication.

O glory be friends! Another blessed and wonderful day of working for Jesus is upon us! Hn! Without a doubt, He is the best employer there is! Working for Him is so stimulating, eye-opening and ofttimes miraculous, plus His rewards are to die for; salvation and everlasting life in His company! Wow! Nothing could be better than that my people. 

Oh I know tests, trials and tribulation will often beset us in this sinful world, but when we have the Holy Spirit of Jesus dwelling within us, we can withstand anything that comes against us. That’s His promise, and we all know that He is ever-faithful where promises are concerned. So what say you that we give the foolish, defeated devil a run for his money today eh?

Let’s just glory in the name of Jesus and do His will with diligence and sincerity. There’s nothing that gets Lucifer madder than having people truly live for and talk about Jesus. So let’s talk up a Jesus storm today friends, and rile Lucifer for a change, instead of him always trying to rile us. (smile) 

Now here are this week’s two quotes from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us. The first one is plain, simple and straightforward. ‘Health is your greatest material asset; if you’re healthy, you are rich.’ And that my brethren is indisputable truth, especially in this sickly society of ours today! 

One would think that in our supposed advanced society, sickness would not be as prevalent as it is, but unfortunately it is, and all of us would be wise to carefully guard and look after our health. But sadly it’s not that easy to do with the busy society we live in, plus all the junk food we’re eating, with all the untested chemicals that are being put in even the simplest things nowadays. 

Just try reading the label of one of your favourite snacks nuh, you’ll be amazed at the amount of stuff that’s in it, most of them you’ve never even heard about before. But they need something to keep it fresh and long-lasting, while making it look enticing. So please friends, let’s pay careful attention to our health, especially that giant killer stress, which doesn’t play favourites, and will knock you down with the same intensity whether you sixteen or sixty. 

And the opposite of that is also true; we have too many couch potatoes and inactive screen watchers. And sadly that lifestyle begins from young, so what will they turn out to be as adults eh? Anyway, they say that a word of warning to the wise is sufficient. You have been warned… so please be wise. (smile)  

And the second of Anselm’s quotes tells us: ‘Never discuss your problems with someone incapable of contributing to the solution because those who never succeed themselves are always first to tell you how.’ 

Now there is also truth in that my people. Everybody and their brother have good advice to give. Meanwhile some of them can’t even spell the word. That’s why so many people are being led astray in today’s supposedly wise, but really fraudulent and deceitful world. 

And my Christian brethren, please pay special attention to that, because the first person we’re to go to for advice is our Creator and heavenly Father, not the last, after everybody else have led us down the garden path. Then if God so desires, He will lead you to another human being for help. 

So there are two things for us to ponder today; the state of our health, and the quality of our advisers. And then ask God to help us improve them. You know He’ll never refuse our sincere requests, once they fall into line with His will. 

And we have a wonderful testimony of that from Psalm 142- Thou art my refuge – a contemplation of Bruh David, when he was hiding in the cave from his enemies, who wanted to take his life. Listen to our Bit. ‘I cried unto the Lord with my voice; with my voice unto the Lord did I make my supplication.’ 

Yes friends, as I keep saying Bruh David knew on which side his bread was buttered. Most of the time he sought the Lord’s help and guidance; the main exception being his adulterous relationship with Bathsheba.  But nonetheless, the Lord heard him and kept his pursuers from harming him. 

And Bruh David continues: ‘I poured out my complaint before him; I showed (declared) before him my trouble. When my spirit was overwhelmed (fainted) within me, then thou knewest my path. In the way wherein I walked have they privily (secretly) laid a snare for me. I looked on my right hand, and beheld, there was no man that would know (acknowledge) me. 

I cried unto thee, O Lord: I said, Thou art my refugee and my portion in the land of the living. Attend unto (give heed to) my cry; for I am brought very low: deliver me from my persecutors; for they are stronger than I. Bring my soul out of prison, that I may praise thy name: the righteous shall compass me about (surround me); for thou shalt deal bountifully with me.’ (Ps.142:2-7) 

Ah friends, can you imagine the magnitude of Bruh David’s situation. There he was, the anointed king of Israel, running and hiding like a common criminal. But he never allowed his faith in the God of his fathers to waiver. His pride and ego did not prevent him from crying out for help to his heavenly Father. 

Likewise my fellow believers, in times of trouble, we should never let pride and/or ego prevent us from crying out to Almighty God for help! It’s the wisest thing we can do, for our wonderful God never turns away a sincere plea for help.  And please note the last verse. Bruh David believes that God will save him, and promises to offer thanksgiving when it occurs. 

Oh friends, today we need to take a page from Bruh David’s book and cry out to God! With a sincere heart, let’s lay all our troubles, fears and worries before Him, so that He can release our souls from the bondage that Lucifer’s trying to keep it in. There’s no greater wisdom that that my fellow believers in Jesus Christ! Much LOVE!

…it’s not wise to put your trust in fallen, finite man…but in the risen, infinite Being called Jesus…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 March 2016 Psalm 77:13‏‏‏‏‏‏

Psalm 77:13.   Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary (holiness): who is so great a God as our God?

Oh friends, it’s the day of the Lord, as celebrated by a majority of Christians! So I do hope that we have all gotten, or are in the process of getting our weekly celebration, gathering with other believers to worship and praise and give thanks to our great God and receive his encouragement and strength and peace and wisdom to endure the vicissitudes of life for another week! Praise His holy name, for He is indeed a great God! 

Now please note that the Bit is not late. (smile) That’s just the way God planned it. You see I was up early this morning, participating in some devotions, then got ready and went to church. 

And you know on this paradise island of Tobago, like everything else, church is also laid back and does take some time. I read the first reading and I shook my tambourine and sang as loudly as I could, given my current asthmatic condition! Glory Hallelujah! 

Then I came home and had breakfast, some bake and saltfish, and the obligatory nap came after. (smile) Only thing is it turned into a little more than a nap, since I had not had a decent night’s sleep last night.  So you see everything is indeed working out according to God’s plan; I’m up now bright and beautiful and rearing to go! 

And talking about bright and beautiful, I see some dark clouds massing up over the southern horizon, seemingly portents of rain which we desperately need in this continuing dry season. 

But I won’t hold my breath because over the last few days it has been particularly cloudy, but nary a drop of heavenly blessing has fallen. The strong winds seem to blow them away at the last minute. But then again that might just be God’s plan, and indeed His prerogative. 

And this Sunday morning, or rather afternoon, I want to remind us of one thing; it’s a quote attributed to the renowned British playwright and novelist, William Somerset Maugham (1874-1965). He reputedly declared that ‘The unfortunate thing about this world is that good habits are so much easier to give up than bad ones.’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my people! We all have been plagued by habits, both good and bad, at some time(s) in our lives and unfortunately, or in some cases fortunately (smile) the bad ones were always the hardest to give up. 

Now why is that eh? I suspect that it has something to with our fallen nature, because most of the bad habits are usually associated with the wrong thinking and beliefs of the lustful and deceitful world which we ofttimes seem to cherish more than the good habits of our wonderful God. 

Now that’s just a reminder to be very careful of those bad worldly habits. When they come a calling, or rear their ugly heads in our lives, we need to resist them with every ounce of our beings, through prayer and fellowship, or else they will most certainly lead us down the garden path to more confusion and corruption in our lives than is necessary. End of sermon. (smile) 

Now let’s turn to our Bit which espouses the greatness of our God Jehovah. ‘Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary (holiness): who is so great a God as our God?’ 

And for all true believers, we know that there is NOBODY as great as our God! As I keep asking, how could there be, when He is the one who created the universe and all therein basically through the spoken word. Who, or what, could be mightier than that eh, to just talk the world into existence? 

NOTHING or NO ONE! 

And we’ll continue looking at some scripture that proves our contention, beginning with the patriarch Abraham, who left his family at seventy-five years of age and wandered out into the unknown because of God’s promise to magnify Him if he obeyed His will. (Gen.12) 

And we all know that God did magnify him, because today, thousands of years later, we talk about and worship the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. 

And how about the Lord’s promise that Abraham would have an heir out of his own loins with his aged wife Sarah? (Gen.18, 21) Who but a great and mighty God could fulfill such a promise when one party was a hundred years old and the other ninety eh, both way past childbearing age? 

The Lord God Jehovah is His name! 

And again when the prophet Samuel’s mother, Hannah, beseeched the Lord to end her barren womanhood, because she was having a hard time with the mocking of her husband Elkanah’s other fruitful wives, what happened? 

Having promised to give the child into His service, the Lord looked down with favour and granted her her heart’s desire, and made him a great prophet amongst his people. (1 Sam.1) 

And who caused Bruh David to kill the mighty Philistine giant with five small stones and a sling shot (catapult) eh? Nobody else but the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Now listen to these immortal words that Bruh David spoke to Goliath. ‘Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied. 

This day will the Lord deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite (strike) thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcasses of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. 

And all this assembly shall know that the Lord saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give you into our hands.’ (1 Sam.17:45-47) 

And it happened just as he declared it! 

Oh friends, I have to chuckle at Bruh David’s belly and backbone yes! Wish we all could have a little bit of it. Just imagine this little runt of a shepherd boy, talking to the mighty Philistine warrior like that nuh! 

But as I’ve always said, if nothing else, Bruh David knew on which side his bread was buttered, for despite all his mistakes and disobedience, he never forsook the God of his fathers. 

Oh my people, this Sunday, please let’s take all the stuff we’ve talked about and diligently mould it into our minds, bodies and souls nuh, so that we can have the courage, the chutzpah of Bruh David, to stand up strong and declare our great God, when the enemy comes against us. 

This I pray in Jesus name. Amen! Much LOVE my people!

…a believer’s bread is buttered on only one side…that of the Lord’s…