Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 February 2019 James 4:3.

James 4:3.   ​Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts (pleasures).

 

Different day, friends, but the same khaki pants! Hn! Ah have to laugh yes, because it seems like more inclement weather is forecasted for today. Steups! Yuh just can’t win with this weather nuh! But you can’t let it keep you locked up indoors forever either. So if you have to go out, just go out and be damned the consequences! 

Just take Jesus’ hand and let Him guide you! He’ll take you out and back safely; that’s His promise! But then again, if you don’t have to go, don’t just go for the sake of going! (smile)  

And today we’re going to talk a li’l about the most powerful tool of communication in our world…it’s called prayer! We know of it, talk a lot about it, but for whatever reason, don’t use it sufficiently. And the first words on it come from the celebrated German writer, philosopher, dramatist and art critic Gotthold Ephraim Lessing (1729-1781), one of the bright lights of the German Enlightenment era. 

And he said way back then: ‘A single grateful thought toward heaven is the most perfect prayer.’ And so it is my brethren. We don’t have to have long, gushing, ornate prayers to be praying right, but just a heartfelt thank you and request is sufficient. And not only that, it’s possibly more quickly answered than the long, overflowing, flowery words prayer. 

The important thing though my Christian brethren is that we pray, and pray sincerely, whether they be long or short, they must be constant and sincere, because remember, God looks at state of our obedience and the motives of our hearts and not our outward show, before He replies to our prayers. 

Now hear these awesome words from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) on the subject of prayer, from His Hour of Power Devotional. He starts out by making this true and most incredible claim: ‘The greatest power in the world today is the power of people to communicate with Almighty God. 

Prayer is not a scheme whereby we can move God into our lives, but rather a spiritual exercise through which we draw ourselves toward God until we are a part of His plan and His purpose. The purpose of prayer is not to give you what you want when you want it, but to make you the kind of person God wanted you to be when He put you on the planet earth.’ 

There you have it friends, the true purpose of prayer; to draw closer to God and to become what He wants us to be! Not to merely be asking Him for stuff that we desire, most of the time to be applied to our fleshly lusts and desires. Now it’s not wrong to ask for stuff that we need, and even our hearts desires, but they must fall under the will of God, be somewhere in His plan for our lives. 

As James castigates us when he talks about worldliness and pride: ‘Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts (pleasures).’ And most of us can’t find fault with that statement, especially in today’s sinful and ungodly world! 

But listen to Job’s discourse on the hypocrite’s hopelessness: ‘For what is the hope of the hypocrite, though he hath gained, when God taketh away his soul? Will God hear his cry when trouble cometh upon him? Will he delight himself in the Almighty? Will he always call upon God?’ The most likely answer to all of that is a simple ‘NO!’ 

For as the psalmist declares (right ho) plain and straight: ‘If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me.’ (Ps.66:18) And that’s the gospel truth; anytime the Lord discovers improper motives in our hearts, He won’t answer our prayers!

That brings us to these most important questions of Jesus: ‘For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?’ (Matt.17:26) And the answer to the first question is ‘ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!’

And the psalmist answers the second one this way: ‘They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him: (For the redemption of their soul is precious (costly), and it ceaseth for ever.’ (Ps.49:6-8) That ought to teach us friends to trust absolutely in God, and not in wealth! 

And Job’s supposed friend, Elihu, adds his two cents worth, as he talks about the results of Job’s sins: ‘Because there is wrath, beware lest he take thee away with his stroke: then a great ransom cannot deliver thee. Will he esteem thy riches? No, not gold, nor all the forces of strength.’ 

Again we see my people, that nothing that the world possess is sufficient to ransom our immortal souls, only the word of God and belief in His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ can keep us from the hell fires of death and destruction! 

Now, enough of all that negative talk (smile), let’s go home declaring (right ho) our Thursday Blessings that the Lord has so magnanimously poured down on us nuh, for being such good followers of His Son Jesus Christ! (smile) 

All together now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline!

I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life!

I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

And He didn’t grant us all that because we were so sweet and obedient, but also to share it with others less fortunate. So let’s go out now and do just that nuh! Much LOVE!

…as Jesus shared the Father’s LOVE and benefits with us…so must we share His LOVE and benefits with others…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 December 2018 Luke 1:45.

Luke 1:45.   ​And blessed is she that (who) believed: for there shall be a performance (fulfillment) of those things which were told her from the Lord.
 
And so we’ve finally arrived at Saturday; a day unlike any other, where we can work, play or simply rest…or even do all three if we so desire! I guess you can call Saturday a day of different things to different people, filled with a hodgepodge of situations and choices. 

But it is a good day also for reflection on our past week; what we’ve done, what we haven’t done, what we liked, what we didn’t like, and most importantly, if we’ve walked with the Lord on a satisfactory level. Let’s hope we will all reflect and discover that we’ve made good progress in our daily walk with the Lord. Praise His holy name! 

Now since it’s Saturday, let’s see what gems of wisdom our friend Anselm sent us this past week in his noble aspiration to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first one tells us: ‘At the end of the day, life is about being happy being who you are, and I feel like we are so blessed to have the support system and the best family to really just support each other no matter what we’re going through.’ 

Now that is surely the epitome of family relationships! But unfortunately too many of those relationships nowadays are clothed in distrust and resentment, turning against each other, instead of standing strong for and trying to help one another. Even when we are happy and contented in being who we are, our support systems are usually sub-par. And one can’t build a good life on that! 

However, having solid support systems, regardless of our differences is something that  ALL families, especially the Christian ones, should purposely aspire to. And with Christ dwelling securely in us, it IS possible, we just have to put our minds to it, and our shoulders to the wheel. 

Then the next quote wisely advises: ‘Stay true to yourself, yet always be open to learn. Work hard, and never give up on your dreams, even when nobody else believes they can come true but you. These are not clichés but real tools you need no matter what you do in life to stay focused on your path.’ You can’t beat that wisdom my people! 

The only proviso is that our path coincides with that of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, for remember He specifically stated a long time ago: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man cometh unto the Father but by me.’ (John 14:6)

And that hasn’t changed my brethren! Jesus is still the ONLY way to the Father! So unless all our dreams and desires are in sync with His plan for our lives, all our efforts will not produce much success. Yes friends, it all depends on taking the route Jesus maps out for us! 

And the last quote simply states: ‘Live life to the fullest, and focus on the positive.’ That’s also gospel truth! Remember Jesus’ immortal words: ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10b) Oh my fellow believers, life was definitely made for living! 

That’s why God made us and gave us all the wonderful things we have, and why Jesus came and died to continue that line of thinking. We are not to be filled with a lot of negativity and dark, evil forebodings, but be filled with the positive effects of the light that’s Jesus! 

And there again, that’s why I like Mary so much. She understood this principle long before Jesus spoke it. Though a young girl who had not seen much of life yet, she realized her call by God and accepted it without any fuss, regardless of the upheaval she knew it would cause in her life. 

Just contrast her behaviour with that of Zechariah, John the Baptist’s father, earlier on in Luke 1.11-22. Zechariah was a man about town, so to speak, a priest who had seen much life, but when Gabriel showed up and told him he would have a son, John the Baptist, he doubted, claiming he was too old and all the other nonsense that we conveniently find to obstruct God’s work.  Thus he became dumb until John’s birth. 

Mary however was like a breath of pure, fresh spring air, positive and constantly moving forward in God’s appointed path. And after the angel Gabriel left her, The Good Book says: ‘And Mary arose in those days, and went into the hill country with haste, into a city of Judah: And entered into the house of Zechariah, and saluted (greeted) Elisabeth. 

And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation (greeting) of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence (why) is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation (greeting) sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in mine womb for joy.’ (Luke 1:39-44) 

Oh friends, oh friends, how great, marvellous and mysterious is our God eh! Elisabeth didn’t know anything about Mary’s predicament, but once she heard her voice, John the Baptist jumped for joy in her womb, because he felt the good and positive vibes that were emanating from Mary, and the Holy Spirit let Elisabeth into the secret, so much so that she could continue their discourse with these prophetic words: 

‘And blessed is she that (who) believed: for there shall be a performance (fulfillment) of those things which were told her from the Lord.’ Mama Mia! Does our God ever move in mysterious ways! Elisabeth’s eyes were opened in a second, and she knew that it would all end the way it was stated. And so it did, with the Immaculate Conception and magnificent birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! 

Ah my fellow believers, how great is our God eh! Hope you enjoyed that heartwarming story as much as I did! (smile) Much LOVE!

…it all begins…and ends…with sincerely believing in Almighty God…the undisputed Creator and Controller of the universe…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 May 2018 1 Corinthians 3:13.

1 Corinthians 3:13.    Every man’s work shall be made manifest (become evident): for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try (test) every man’s work of what sort it is. 

Ah friends, more glorious weather is in the offing in my area, but in a couple of other parts of the world, that doesn’t seem to be a likelihood. Apparently the ash from the Hawaiian volcano is still causing problems and the North East coast of the U.S. has been battered by a wicked wind and hale storm, leaving thousands without power. 

Brother! That area of the U.S has certainly taken a pounding this year. Let’s keep hoping and praying and doing whatever we can to help, because we never know when we’ll find ourselves in such a disastrous situation. 

And today I want to share some words attributed to John Maxwell, pastor, author and famous leadership expert. I think I might have shared them before, but if so, they are indeed worthy of being repeated again. (smile) And here John talks about dreams and positive attitudes. 

‘A dream without a positive attitude produces a daydreamer. A positive attitude without a dream, produces a pleasant person who never makes any progress. A dream, together with a positive attitude produces a person with unlimited possibility and potential.’ 

And isn’t that the living truth friends! You can’t have one without the other and be successful. So from today, let’s start putting our dreams together with our positive attitudes nuh, so that we can become people of unlimited possibility and potential. 

The Lord has put many dreams and desires in our hearts, and He has also given us all the tools to bring them to pass. It is now our duty to blend and meld whatever is necessary to produce the good works that God has planned for us to do in this life. 

That brings us to our Bit. ‘Every man’s work shall be made manifest (become evident): for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try (test) every man’s work of what sort it is.’ 

Yes my brethren, come the judgement day our works will be tried by fire to see what they were made of. Hence before our Bit, Bruh Paul writes: ‘According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. 

But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stone, wood, hay, stubble (straw);’ (1 Cor.3:10-12) 

Yuh see friends, the ONLY sensible foundation for us to build on is Jesus. But even then it’s very important what materials we use to build on Jesus. There are a lot of different things we can use, but we have to be sure that whatever we use can withstand the fire come that fateful day. 

And the scholars offer these explanations: ‘ 3:13. The day is the day of the judgement seat of Christ (cf.4:5; 2 Cor.5:10). Fire is figurative for judgement, more specifically, the absolutely righteous judgement of God. Fire is used here to denote, not enlightening power, but consuming power. Of the six types of material mentioned (vs.12), three are combustible and three are incombustible. See also Deuteronomy 4:24; Malachi 3:2; 2 Thessalonians 1:8; Hebrews 12:29).’ 

And friends, I’d strongly suggest you look up those last four scriptures, I just did, and they surely convinced me of the awesome firepower of our God. So for our works to last we not only have to build upon the foundation that’s Jesus, but also build with incombustible material, meaning, strong serious, worthy work. 

For as Bruh Paul continues: ‘If any man’s work abide (endures) which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by (through) fire.’ (1 Cor.3:14-15) 

And the scholars explain: ‘3:14. Reward (lit. “wages,” cf. 3:8): Of course even the “wages: mentioned here are entirely a gift of grace (cf. 1 Cor.9:17; 2 John 8; Rev.11:18).’ ‘3:15. Saved: Such a one does not suffer the loss of his salvation, but the loss of reward. The stress in this entire passage is not on a person’s relationship to Christ, but on service to Christ.’ 

That’s good news in a sense friends! If our works don’t hold up, we’ll still be in heaven, just somewhat the poorer! (smile) But I know that ALL of us will like our works to stand the test of time and fire, we don’t want to be the poor relations in heaven, therefore we will ALL endeavour to build on Jesus with time tested, incombustible materials. 

And to help us do that, let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world clearly know our position in Jesus. In loud voice and sincere heart 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 will that future ever be glorious my believing brethren! Much LOVE!

…now he that planteth…and he that watereth…are one…and every man shall receive his own reward…according to his own labour… (1 Cor.3:8)

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 September 2017 Matthew 5:41.

Matthew 5:41.   And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain (two).

Oh friends, autumn has begun with a bang in my area! On the first day, yesterday, the temperature was in the high twenties. And for the weekend, a heat warning has been advised by the Health Department because the temps will be in the thirties all weekend. Wow! Usually by this time the leaves would be brown and falling. 

And wonder of wonders, no little cyclones of leaves from my lane have begun spinning around my driveway as yet, as that’s where they all seem to gather in their death knell. Even when all my trees are bare, my driveway is full of them. But right now all the trees are still green, though we haven’t had any rain for at least a couple of weeks during the nice weather. 

Unfortunately, a lot of others can’t say the same thing because they have gone through devastating losses because of hurricanes, earthquakes or fires. Ah Lord eh! What’s causing all this sudden unusual disaster eh? Is it simply climate change, or God’s wrath on our sinful souls? Who knows? 

But the smart thing would be to try and improve our caretaking of the planet, and turn our eyes and hearts heavenward in repentance to our ever merciful and forgiving God. Those are the only two actions that make sense in these calamitous days my people. Anyway, all true Christians should be praying even more than before, and helping our unfortunate brethren in any way we can. 

Now since today is Saturday, let’s look at some quotes from our friend Anselm for this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And this week they were all simple one-liners, like: ‘Upgrade your values.’ Now that should be always a priority in our lives, but the fact is that as we get more intelligent and prosperous, our standards are sadly falling. But who cares? Jesus does, as He expects diligence and excellence from ALL His followers. 

And Anselm also recommends: ‘Don’t stop working towards your dream.’ Now why would we want to do such a foolish thing eh, when working towards fulfilling them is exactly why God put dreams and desires in our hearts? We need to cherish them, hold them close to our hearts and make every effort for them to come true. And if they adhere to God’s law and will, they will eventually do so, but we do have to keep working diligently and enthusiastically towards them and never give up. 

And this quote is interesting. ‘Someone’s opinion is not your reality.’ So true! Ofttimes the opinions of others just don’t jive with what you are about. But please don’t just dismiss them offhandedly; learn to wisely consider those opinions, for sometimes they do contain a grain of truth or wisdom. (smile) 

And thus, you can also ‘Take full responsibility for your life.’ Now that quote brings forth a sarcastic chuckle, because we all know that in today’s world, shunning responsibility is the name of the game. It’s always everybody else’s fault but our own. It’s called the blame game: blame everybody else but ourselves. 

But then in the last quote, Anselm tells us that we should ‘Give more than you are paid for.’ Hn! Hn! Another no-no in this society! We don’t even want to do what we’re paid to do, much less to give more. Chuh! It’s ingrained in our work habits, to do as little as we can get away with; to take advantage of the benefits wherever we can. So doing extra is just very seldom an option in this modern day and age. 

But it was very important to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ as He talks about LOVING our enemies in the Sermon on the Mount, from which our Bit comes. ‘And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain (two).’ 

So friends, shirking our duty and not willing to give more than we are asked for does not fall into Jesus’ portfolio at all. He expects us ALWAYS to live up to our responsibility and to do and give more than we’re asked. That’s just another example of why, as Christians, we should not be following the dictates of the world. We must be in the world, but not be of the world. 

Now here’s an explanation of our Bit from the scholars. ‘5:41. In ancient times government agents were in a position to compel forced service upon a subjugated people. A Roman soldier, for example, could compel a Jewish native to carry his armour or materials for one mile. Jesus now states that if someone compels you to walk a mile, go with him twain. The believer is to be willing to “go the extra mile.” Doing double our duty not only proves our loyalty to human authority, but likewise proves the spiritual intention of our heart.’ 

Ah mih people, how many of us supposed Christians hold to that action eh? Not as many as should, for we insist on following the poor example of the world, because it’s so much easier, less challenging and less responsible too. But my brethren, as true believers, we should instead be following the outstanding example which Jesus set, and wants us to follow, even though it’s difficult and very challenging. 

Yes friends, Jesus is all about coming up higher in EVERY walk of life, and to be His sincere followers, we need to fashion ourselves after Him. Nothing else will do! Much LOVE!

…the tests and trials of this life…are God’s way of remaking us…into the image of Jesus…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 February 2017 Matthew 26:39.

Matthew 26:39.   And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.

And then it was Tuesday – a semi-cloudy, chilly day in my area, but it sure feels great to be alive! 

Yes friends, there’s nothing to beat waking up to a new God-given morn, regardless of all the problems you know await you, once you set your feet on the ground. I guess the only thing better would be waking up in heaven and seeing Jesus face to face! Wow! 

But we’re not ready for that just yet, (smile) and I don’t think He’s quite ready for us yet either, otherwise we we’d be reading our names in the obits this morning. 

So let’s give Him a great big shout of praise in a ‘Thank You Lord! We LOVE You and bless Your Holy Name, and will do our very best to walk in Your will this Tuesday morning! Amen!’ 

In addition to that, let me share a li’l prayer from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. I believe I’ve shared it before, but like so many other prayers – it’s like forgiveness – (smile) one worthy of being shared again and again. 

Please pray with me. ‘Father, I turn these minutes over to you. Do something beautiful in my mind, in my heart, and in my life today. So I will look back and say: “I was caught up by an inspiring spirit of the eternal God in this moment of prayer.” In the name of Christ I pray. Amen.’ 

Oh friends, it’s so beautiful when the Holy Spirit inspires us! A wave of joy just spreads through our entire being, because we know that our heavenly Father has just communicated with us, and we are definitely on the right path, the straight and narrow one. Glory Hallelujah! 

I don’t know about you all nuh people, but my problem is not so much doing God’s will, but knowing what is His will? That’s why I ask for discernment and focus every day in my prayers. Once I know the path He wants me to tread, then I can usually set my mind to it. 

Too often I’ve thought that I knew His will, only to discover that it really wasn’t His will, but my own, which led to unfortunate circumstances. And the way the world is so flashy and insistent and persistent today, it’s very easy to get thoughts into our heads that seem to be God’s, when in actual fact they are our own longings and desires. 

So we have to be very careful in our discernment, otherwise we can be very easily led astray by the wiles and deceptions of the enemy. And my fellow believers, knowing the will of God, and pursuing it is one of the most important aspects of our faith. 

And we can see how important it was to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, so it had to be even more important to us. At the time of His greatest anxiety, the night before His crucifixion, in the Garden of Gethsemane, what was His prayer eh? 

After telling Peter, James and John, the three disciples that were with Him: ‘My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry (stay, wait) ye here, and watch with me.  

And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.’ 

Ah mih breddren, Jesus was every bit as human as us, with all the aches and pains and fear of death. Now wouldn’t you be afraid if you not only knew the time of your death, but also the unimaginable cruelty and disgrace involved. 

However, Jesus knew that He was also born for that momentous, world-changing event, and as always put the Father’s will before everything else. So too should we my believing brethren. Listen to a couple of Jesus’ pronouncements on doing the Father’s will. 

After the episode of the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well, (John 4), the disciples pleaded with Jesus to eat. ‘Jesus saith unto them, My meat (food) is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.’ (John 4:34) 

Yuh see friends, He’s more interested in doing the Father’s will, than in physical food, which He needed to keep His body strong and healthy. How many of us are willing to make such a serious statement eh? 

Not too many. But that is exactly the kind of statement we Christians ought to be able to make, if we are to be successful in Jesus’ work here on earth. 

Now hear Jesus’ statement when the Jews tried to persecute Him after healing a lame man on the Sabbath. Here He is talking about the Son’s relationship with the Father. 

‘I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgement is just (righteous); because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.’ (John 6:30) 

So friends, just like Jesus, let’s seek to do the Lord’s will at all times nuh, because that is the secret of true Christian living. Now let’s go home loudly and proudly declaring our Tuesday Mantra as one body secure in Christ. 

‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am thebeloved 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!’ 

Oh Glory Hallelujah my people! Let’s go out now, fully clothed in the LOVE of God, and share it with all we come into contact with nuh, for that is the stated desire of our friend Jesus! Much LOVE!

…the Lord gives us LOVE…not only for ourselves…but also to share with others…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 January 2017 Galatians 5:16.

Galatians 5:16.   This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

Ah friends, the ole fella must be getting better yes, because I woke up this morning and actually felt for a cup of coffee! Glory Hallelujah! 

That does say something, since I haven’t been drinking any since I left the hospital. The couple cups I had earlier on, just didn’t sit right, so I just left it alone. But this one actually tastes good. Glory to God, my taste buds are being revived! 

And in honour of that, this chilly and gloomy Saturday morning, here is a poem from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional titled ‘Beauty!’ 

Please pray with me. ‘Thank you, Father, for filling the world with beauty. I thank you for the beauty of life, the beauty of LOVE, the beauty of children, and the beauty of old people. I thank you for the beauty of Christ and for the beauty of any life when Christ is invited through the Holy Spirit. Thank you, Father, that you have made my life beautiful too. Amen.’ 

And I don’t know about you all nuh friends, but the Lord has indeed made my life beautiful! I can plainly see it after that scary, life threatening moment a couple of weeks ago. 

You never seem to truly appreciate something until you almost lose it. And yuh better believe, I am very appreciative of life right now, regardless of the state I’m in! And it’s all to the glory of God! 

Now here is an interesting quote from our friend Anselm, who aspires to inspire us. This one says: ‘Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.’ 

And is that ever so true friends! A lot of us are clock-watchers, especially when it comes time to quit work and go home (smile) but you’ll notice that despite the circumstances surrounding it, the good ole clock just keeps on ticking on its merry way to wherever. 

Likewise, Christians are not to let our circumstances stop us from ticking on for Jesus. It will not always be easy to do, but if the Father has brought us to it, He will bring us through it, that’s His faithful promise. 

However, we also have to do our part in the partnership between Christ and us. It’s not a one-way street. Thus the advice of Bruh Paul to the Galatians: ‘This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.’ 

Yeh mih people, to walk with God, means to walk in His Spirit, so that our carnality doesn’t come to the fore. 

Listen to this explanation from the scholars. ‘5:16. Walk in the Spirit (i.e. “live by the Spirit”): Christians are to live with the Spirit’s help. How does one “live by the Spirit”? (1) The Christian must believe that the Spirit is with him, having been sent by God into his heart (4:6). (2) In every spiritual confrontation the believer must yield to the Spirit, that is, submit his own desires to those of the Spirit. 

(3) One must depend on the Spirit for help, enabling him to live a God-pleasing life (v.5). (4) The believer should anticipate the effects of the Spirit’s help in his daily life. The believer who “lives by the Spirit” will not fulfill (accomplish, carry out) the lust (strong desires) of the flesh (sinful nature).’ 

Ah mih breddren, I know all of that sounds hard and confusing, but it is the basis of our Christianity. We can’t live on the fence, it’s either Spiritual or carnal, fleshly living, and the first only comes by working constantly and continually at it, with God’s help. 

Please realize friends that true spirit living doesn’t come overnight, but like everything else in life takes practice and time to develop and mature. 

And the reason for Bruh Paul’s admonition in our Bit is: ‘For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.’ (Gal.5:17) 

Yeh friends, it is a controversy within our souls. And the scholars tell us: ‘5:17. One’s sinful human nature (flesh) and the Holy Spirit lusteth against one another, that is, they have desires and yearnings contrary to one another. 

The Christian then is a battlefield, having desires to do good and evil. The outcome is that ye cannot do the things that ye would: the flesh seeks to thwart the Spirit, who, in turn, attempts to frustrate the flesh’s evil desires.’ 

But you know what friends, it’s not really a tug of war, because once we’ve made up our minds to live by the Spirit, we consciously try and remove sin from our lives, so that the flesh doesn’t have much hold over us, and we can just go on sincerely and seriously ticking for Jesus. Now that is wisdom at its zenith! Much LOVE!

…each tick and tock of our spiritual clock…means one more point for Jesus…Glory to God…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 September 2016 Galatians 5:16.

Galatians 5:16.    This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

Aye mih people, another great day is ahead of us, courtesy of our wonderful God! So please, let’s use it wisely nuh, guided by the Holy Spirit of God that dwells within us. 

It’s okay to shout ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and the weekend’s here…’ and what we going to do from what we not going to do, but not if they simply relate to the lustful and dangerous pleasures of the world. 

We desperately need to have better groundings, a better foundation for the way we spend our time off, if we are going to have any kind of godly success in this crazy world of ours. And our Friday Chant provides us with that solid footing, that godly balance that we need. 

So let’s chant it nuh, with sincerity, honesty and truth, praying that it will help us do better than we’re accustomed doing. As one now: ‘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.’ 

Yeh friends, that’s a much better template for our weekends, than just wild and crazy, dissolute, leggo beast behaviour, which so many of us unfortunately indulge in when we have the couple of days off. 

That’s why Bruh Paul spent so much time warning us against just such a thing, and gave us this godly direction in our Bit. ‘This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.’ 

Yes my believing brethren, the Holy Spirit was sent to dwell within us so that we would follow it’s godly leading and direction, but first we have to stop and listen to it, otherwise we won’t know what it’s saying or where it wants to guide us. 

And the scholars explain it thus: ‘5:16. Walk in the Spirit (i.e. “live by the Spirit”): Christians are to live with the Spirit’s help. How does one “live by the Spirit”? (1) The Christian must believe that the Spirit is with him, having been sent by God into his heart (4:6). (2) In every spiritual confrontation the believer must yield to the Spirit, that is, submit his own desires to those of the Spirit. 

(3) One must depend on the Spirit for help, enabling him to lead a God-pleasing life (v.5). (4) The believer should anticipate the effects of the Spirit’s help in his daily life. The believer who “lives by the Spirit” will not fulfill (accomplish, carry out) the lust (strong desires) of the flesh (sinful desires).’  

There you have it friends, a scholarly guide as to how the Holy Spirit should operate in our lives. Oh, we know it’s not easy living a godly and spiritual life; it takes patience, perseverance, listening, sacrificing, questioning and praying, but with God’s help we can do it all. 

And why is it so difficult to lead that godly life we so ardently desire? Bruh Paul gives us some indication in the verse after our Bit. ‘For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things ye would.’ (Gal.5:17) 

Ah mih people, it can be a monumental task, a veritable war, if we’re not strong, faithful and persevering. 

Hear how the scholars tell it. ‘5:17. One’s sinful human nature (flesh) and the Holy Spirit lusteth against one another, that is, they have desires and yearnings that are contrary to one another. The Christian, then, is a battlefield, having desires to do good and evil. The outcome is that ye cannot do the things that ye would: the flesh seeks to thwart the Spirit, who, in turn, attempts to frustrate the flesh’s evil desires.’ 

Gospel truth that my people! As Bruh Paul told the Roman church in his missive to them, talking about the struggle of our two natures. ‘For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal (fleshly), sold under sin. 

For that which I do I allow (understand) not: for what I would (want to do), that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto (agree with) the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.’ (Rom.7:14-17) 

What a battlefield of life my brethren! Now listen to this important explanation of the scholars. ‘7:14. The law is spiritual: The law has the characteristics of the Spirit and is consistent with the character of God. I am carnal: What follows is autobiographical and designed to reveal the real struggle the apostle experienced in the flesh. His experience is also exemplary, for it shows the problems all believers experience in their battle with sin.’ 

So friends, if you are experiencing problems in fighting your fleshly desires, don’t beat yourself up, for it’s just a natural part of this earthly life. We will always have problems trying to be godly, even Bruh Paul had a hard time doing what he wanted to do, as per living by the Spirit. 

What we need to do is to be patient and persevering; keep on reading God’s word, studying it, meditating on it, storing it in our hearts for future use, praying, fellowshipping, and listening intently to what the Holy Spirit tells us. 

And we won’t always be successful, but our compassionate and understanding God knows our weaknesses and frailties, and once He sees us sincerely trying, that our hearts and motives are right, He will be forgiving and compassionate. So please, let’s all stand strong and steadfast in His great LOVE, mercy, compassion and grace. Much LOVE!

…fighting our carnal nature…is a full time spiritual job…

 

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