Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 October 2019 Isaiah 1:3.

Isaiah 1:3.    ​The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib (manger or feed trough): but Israel doth not know (understand), my people doth not consider.

 

Oh yeah, the sun finally won the battle of the weather titans yesterday! It came out shining brightly in the afternoon, but without any real strength, so there was a resultant chill in the air. And some premonition tells me that this is the time for the big chill to finally begin! (smile) 

There will now be very few warmish days, as autumn gets into full swing. The leaves on the trees are already losing their green colour and turning a rustic brown, yellow and gold. Despite the cold winter months it heralds, autumn is still the most beautiful of all the seasons, colourful like a Carnival Tuesday in T&T! Remember, God invented colour! (smile) 

And the last time I looked, the sun was valiantly trying to peek out of the large cloud cover that hid it from sight. But regardless of what happens, today, or any other day, the Good Book assures us that we can do anything and everything through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, who strengthens us. (Phil, 4:13) 

And that’s gospel truth my Christian brethren! Through the LOVE and grace and mercy of Christ, NOTHING is impossible to us, we can handle any situation or circumstance that comes against us with true assurance and courage…if we believe! Now let’s turn to our Saturday programme, looking at the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he sincerely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And I had a good chuckle at this first one: ‘It’s better to sit in a bar and think about God, than to sit in a church thinking about beer.’ Now that might sound like blasphemy or some such thing, but it’s really the truth! Wherever you are, it’s always better to think about God, than what your situation might naturally induce you to think about, simply because when we think about God, we’re led to do godly things, even in a house of sin. (smile) 

Listen to this next one: ‘Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.’ Yes that’s what we all need to do. God promises us the best, but in this evil world, the worst is also possible, that means we have to be prepared for anything that comes against us. And we’ve already said that we can handle it with Christ’s help, so there’s no need to worry there, especially since we also are assured that no weapon formed against us will prosper. (Is.54:17) Glory to God my faithful brethren!  

That brings us to this similar quote: ‘When obstacles arise, you change your direction to reach your goal; you do not change your decision to get there.’ Ah mih people, in this evil and ungodly world we’re sure of one thing, obstacles! Whatever we do, especially if it’s for God, the enemy will always try to put obstacles and impediments in our way, so that we don’t reach our goals. But then we don’t need to give up or change our goals, but merely change the direction in which we originally planned to meet them. And does it ever feel good when we thwart the enemy, with God’s help of course! 

And the necessary ingredients for doing that are found in this next quote. ‘You build on failure. You use it as a stepping-stone. Close the door on the past. You don’t try to forget the mistakes, but you don’t dwell on them. You don’t let them have any of your energy, or any of your time, or any of your space.’ Yes friends, if we try to do anything in this world, some failure is inevitable. As the saying goes, you can’t succeed until you fail. 

But please remember too that failure is not permanent, unless you allow it to be. Most of the successful people in this world have failed on numerous occasions, but they got back up, hopefully with God’s help, and kept pressing on until they were successful. And we all have to do the same thing; don’t let one or two, or even three failures cause us to give up on our godly dreams, but learn from each failure, for each one has lessons to teach us, then get up and keep on fighting the good fight. That’s the only way to really succeed. 

And this last quote is really interesting, something that most of us never really consider. ‘A person can LOVE you and still cheat, just like we LOVE God and still sin.’ Think on that for a moment nuh! So many of us claim to LOVE God, but yet we engage in a lot of sin and think nothing much of it. But let someone who claims to LOVE us go astray, or step out of line slightly, yuh see the big noise we make, the way we carry on as though the world is falling down on us! 

But have we ever considered how God feels when we betray Him? We obviously don’t class our sinful behaviour towards God in the same light as someone’s wrong toward us. We behave as though the latter is ever so important, while we sort of overlook the former, saying or thinking that God will forgive us. But what about us forgiving those who do us wrong eh? That brings us to an interesting and oh so appropriate scripture from Isaiah, where the Lord complains. 

‘Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the Lord hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me. The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib (manger or feed trough): but Israel doth not know (understand), my people doth not consider.’ And as it was true of God’s chosen people, Israel, way back then, so is it also true of us in these sinful and ungodly times; we have rebelled against Him after enjoying His goodness and grace and mercy, becoming proud and arrogant, behaving as if we gave ourselves all the good things we have. 

And as the Lord continues: ‘Ah sinful nation, a people laden (weighed down) with iniquity, a seed of evil-doers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the Lord, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone (turned) away backward.’ (Is. 1:4) And if we are truthful, we will admit that our society, like that of ancient Israel, has become oh so evil and turned away from God so much, even trying to force Him out, that He must be seething with anger. 

And don’t tell me that God doesn’t get angry; it says so throughout the Good Book. He’s just long-suffering; holds in His anger for a long time, but when it finally erupts, as it has done, and will again some day if we keep on the way we’re going; it’s deadly! The scholars explain it thus: ‘1:2-4. Children…rebelled: Isaiah pictures the southern kingdom of Judah as ungrateful children rebelling against their parents. These verses serve as a “great arraignment” of the chosen people who have become corrupt and backslidden. The prophet calls them back to obedience to God.’ 

Likewise friends, the Lord is calling us back to obedience, to repentance and the godliness our society once knew. And if we don’t obey, but continue down the ungodly path we’re now treading, then someday, sooner or later, He’s going to lose His patience with us, and we’ll end up like the Israelites did, when they did not heed His warnings; devastated, hounded by calamity! Now that’s not a very good legacy to bequeath to our descendants, so please let’s seriously try and change it now nuh! That’s about all I can say. Much LOVE!

…continued rebellion against God…will always bring disastrous consequences…

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 July 2019 Luke 21:15.

Luke 21:15.    ​For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay (refute) nor resist.
 

So it’s Wednesday; the middle of the week, and everybody breathes a sigh of relief, saying: ‘Three down, only two more to go!’ Ah friends, what is it with us and work eh? The majority of people don’t like what they do for a living, and would rather not do it, but they have limited choices, so they acquiesce and do the job half-heartedly. And that includes Christians too! 

The only problem there is that as Christians we’re not supposed to be working unto man, but unto God, and if we have Jesus dwelling in us then we’re supposed to do as good a job as possible even if we don’t like it. And furthermore we’re supposed to be contented and grow wherever He plants us. 

So if you’re the lone believer where you work and get a lot of heat for it, then believe that’s where Jesus wants you at this time, so you can shine your light in that dark world of unbelief and allow your salt to spice up and make tasty the corrupt and corroded atmosphere! But hear what Jesus says will happen when we suffer for His name’s sake. ‘Take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say; for the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.’ (Luke 12:11-12) 

Now here is an interesting explanation from the scholars. ‘12:12. The Holy Ghost shall teach: Remember that (1) these men had Jesus as a personal teacher; (2) these disciples being Jews, had a great command of Old Testament Scripture; and (3) the New Testament was not yet begun. 

This is not to say that Jesus’ promise has no application today, since the experience of persecuted Christians in this century proves otherwise. Yet it would be dangerous to presume on direct, supernatural guidance without doing all possible to avail oneself of means already at hand to learn of God and His ways.’ 

Yeh friends, they’re not saying that supernatural guidance is impossible, but it’s much easier for you to stand up strong in Jesus’ name when you know His Word and thus for the Holy Spirit to remind you of certain truths to use when you’re under the gun. 

And I like how Luke further puts it: Jesus tells them: ‘Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer. For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay (refute) nor resist.’ (Luke 21:14-15) 

Ah mih people, we don’t have to beat up ourselves as to what we ought to say when we encounter opposition, for the Holy Spirit, our guide and comforter, our inspiration and constant companion, will lead us to say the right things. But you have to know the Word so you can associate it with whatever and wherever He guides you. 

And we have this further assurance from Jesus: ‘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) And if you’re a true believer that verse of scripture ought to quell whatever anxiety and worry that’s in your heart right now! 

That’s the wonderful thing about our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ; when you sincerely believe in Him, even in the midst of trials and tribulation we can have peace in our souls! No other faith can promise, guarantee and deliver such a wonderful situation! But friends, it doesn’t just happen overnight, you have to go through those trials so you can grow and mature in the faith. 

And I can testify to that because years ago, I was holidaying in California when my mother died unexpectedly up here. Obviously I was devastated by her unexpected death, but I clearly remember a surprising peace that suddenly came over me, and I was able to handle the situation with the necessary fortitude. But the people around me were also surprised at how cool, calm and collected I was despite the devastating news. 

It doesn’t mean that I wasn’t sad and didn’t cry and display all the other emotions associated with unexpected loss, but the important thing is that I didn’t fall apart and become useless to myself and those around me. And every time I look back at that situation, I can only smile and realize that it was indeed the goodness of God, the overwhelming peace of Jesus that got me through the situation. 

And what made that peace even more welcome is that I had disembarked in Las Vegas and driven to California, and the price to change my flight to leave from California was astronomical, so I had to drive all the way back through the desert to Las Vegas that took a fair amount of time. But though my heart was heavy, it was at peace, thanks be to Jesus! 

And yuh know friends, even during these last two and a half years of sickness and medical procedures, I was never worried about making it through, I was more annoyed than anything at having to go through all that stuff. (smile) And that’s because by then I had matured enough to believe God’s promise of if He puts me through it, He will bring me through it, stronger than before. And I am stronger than before! 

That’s my testimony and I’m sticking to it. (smile) Hope it does offer some encouragement to those of you who are going through serious problems right now. You just have to believe, despite the darkness of the situation. And the Lord might not change the situation, as He might just be testing you, but He will change you, so that you can handle the situation! 

Enough sermonizing for today though! Let’s go home declaring (yeah!) our Wednesday Wail telling all and sundry our wonderful position in Christ! As one strong, sincere and enthusiastic voice 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 please remember that if we stand strong and finish our race with vim and vinegar, that future will be even more glorious than we can ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…true faith…only comes and grows…by experiencing trials…and sincerely believing in…the faithful promises of Jesus…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 October 2018 Matthew 5:13a & 14a.

Matthew 5:13a & 14a.     Ye are the salt of the earth… Ye are the light of the world…
 
And Saturday has dawned somewhat cloudy, chilly and damp from early evening drizzle. And in Mother Nature’s eccentric way, a lot of the trees that only two days ago I said were surprisingly still green, are now almost all golden yellow. She’s delivered the final message; it’s time to buckle down for the cold winter months ahead. And we, people of God, should also be heeding Mother Nature’s missive, because I believe we’ll be in for some rather tough times in the near future. 

And talking about tough times, I was negligent in mentioning Hurricane Michael that devastated parts of Florida a couple days ago. It came up suddenly, did, it’s dirty work and was gone again. Please let’s pray for those unfortunate people, and do whatever else we can to help them. But that might just be the pattern of natural disasters, or really any kind of disaster that might soon befall us. 

You’ll notice how disasters of all kinds have happened all over the world this year with surprising regularity. I don’t want to read too much into it, but friends, if we are wise, we will at least suspect the hand of our omnipotent God somewhere about in them, sending us a warning, to repent from our sinful ways. 

I don’t know if the world has ever been this evil, adding to the fact that we’re trying so desperately to oust God from our society. Do you think He’ll just sit quietly by and let it happen? I doubt it. But that’s just a word of warning to the wise. 

And since today is Saturday, let’s look at some of the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And first up is this: ‘All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.’ I’m not so sure about that nuh. 

Yes, life is indeed experimental; you have to try stuff to see if it works for you. But I truly wonder if the more experiments we try, the merrier, or better off we are? I think at some stage, when we find our true calling, that the experimenting must either cease or slow down. 

Then there is this: ‘A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life.’ Now that’s basically true, but some will need a definition of wasting time before they agree, since to them doing nothing, is not always a waste of time, sometimes it can be a means of refreshing and renewing oneself. But generally speaking, just letting time fly by, and it does fly by, without doing positive and productive stuff, even if it’s simply regenerating oneself, isn’t a wise way to use it. 

Now hear this quote: ‘All of life is peaks and valleys. Don’t let the peaks get too high and the valleys too low.’ That makes sense. We can’t afford to be moving too often from top to bottom, because that just saps the energy and spirit of our souls. We need to try and establish a nice balance between the good times and the rough times, plus don’t stay down too long, or fly too high before we develop wings. (smile) 

And the last quote says: ‘My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.’ 

Now that is gospel truth my brethren! We were not placed down here to merely survive, to go about like ‘poor me ones,’ but to be salt and light and magnificent examples to the unbeliever: in other words to be excellent ambassadors of Christ. As Jesus so adamantly stated in His famous Sermon on the Mount: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth… Ye are the light of the world…’ 

Yes friends, that’s what Christ’s followers are expected to be; full of vim and vigour, showing their excellence in all matters, leading the parade in His name! Now are we leading the parade in Jesus’ name, my fellow believers? I don’t think so nuh, otherwise the evil-doers would not be having the upper hand in the world today, and we’d not be trying like hell to kick Christ out of our society. 

That just shows we’re not on top of things. We seem to be more like how Christ described flavourless salt: ‘but if the salt has lost his savour (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden underfoot of men’ (Matt.5:13b) Likewise: ‘A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt.5:14b-15)  

Now if those two negative situations Jesus describes are true of us in these trying times, then it doesn’t speak well of us my believing brethren. And sadly, there is a whole lot of truth to it! Our efforts for Christ are simply not up to scratch; there are too many divisions, too much petty resentment and feuding between so-called believers, plus too much compromise with the heathen, and too much of just sitting on our laurels and figuring everything will just work itself out for good. 

No friends, winning souls for Christ, and the world for His LOVE Revolution WILL not happen without our saltiness and light blaring forth, dazzling the entire world! 

Now listen to Jesus final words on the subject. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:16) 

Yes friends, that’s how true believers ought to be behaving, so that God can be glorified! Remember that’s our chief mission here on earth! So let’s pull up our socks and go out and do better for Jesus nuh mih breddren! Don’t you feel bad that we’re letting the world blaspheme His holy name and kick Him around like a bloody football, after all He’s done for us? We ought to! Much LOVE!

…if you’re not flavouring the world with your saltiness…and dazzling them with your light…then you’re a poor ambassador for Christ…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 September 2017 Luke 8:50.

Luke 8:50.   But when Jesus heard it, he answered him, saying, Fear not: believe only, and she shall be made whole.

Well friends, it’s Saturday, we’re alive and kicking and into the weekend in full swing now! For that we should be grateful and give our great God some thanks for His grace and mercy, because that’s the only reason why we’re still alive today. Many people have not been so fortunate or blessed. 

But then again friends, is there ever a day when some sort of disaster isn’t taking place in our world? I understand that tropical storm Jose has now strengthened back to hurricane status and is heading for the East coast of North America, including the Eastern Canadian Provinces. 

And on another sorrowful note, the island of Barbuda, which was flattened by hurricane Irma now has no one living there, for the first time in some three hundred years. 

It was so badly devastated that they had to move all the residents to the sister island of Antigua. It’s a good thing that Antigua did not feel the full force of Irma, otherwise it would have been truly catastrophic. 

But what to do eh? We just have to have hope and carry on, for we know that once there is life, there is hope, and once there is hope, anything’s possible. And normally on a Saturday, we’d turn to those priceless quotes from our friend Anselm, in his heroic endeavour to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

However, because of hurricane Irma, I have only received one missive him from him this week, and that was yesterday. He lives some where in Florida and was most likely without power until then. He is apparently one of the fortunate ones, because there are millions down there who are still without power. 

And yesterday’s quote aptly said: ‘Believe in yourself.’ And that’s something we all need to do friends, if we hope to have any success in any and every aspect of our lives. However, I would like to add one proviso to that statement…but first, believe in God! 

Now that’s the kick-starter for ALL things; belief in Almighty God! For without that assurance and trust in our Creator and heavenly Father, nothing will go right in our lives. 

That brings us to our Bit, where, Jesus, on his way to a synagogue ruler’s house to heal his daughter, got waylaid into some other healing, and then a messenger came and told the ruler: ‘Thy daughter is dead; trouble not the Master (Teacher). But when Jesus heard it, he answered him, saying, Fear not: believe only, and she shall be made whole.’ 

Yeh friends, everything in our lives first has to start with belief of some kind, and the best kind of belief is that which is based on Almighty God! It’s only logical my brethren. If He is the creator of everything, then there is none better to put our belief, our faith and our trust in! 

How did Jesus put it? ‘Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.’ (John 14:1) And so should we, seeing that Jesus IS the Son of God, as well as our Lord and Saviour, who sacrificed His sinless life so that we could be cleansed and set free from our sins. 

Oh my people, our Christian experience is based strictly on belief, on faith, on sincere trust in the Holy Trinity, consisting of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. If we don’t believe in their ascendancy, then our Christian faith is valueless. 

Jesus made the connection very often. Look at when the woman with the issue of blood for twelve years, believing she could be healed if she could only touch the hem of His robe, pushed through the crowd and did exactly that. She was healed immediately. 

And what did Jesus say to her afterwards? ‘Daughter, be of good comfort (cheer): thy faith hath made thee whole (well); go in peace.’ (Luke 8:48) 

And it works both ways friends. Hear how Jesus admonishes the crowd that followed Him only to be relieved from their physical hunger and not their spiritual lack. ‘I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. But I said unto you, That ye have seen me, and believe not.’ (John 6:35-36) 

And like wise He chastises Phillip, when he asks Him to show them the Father. ‘Have I been so long time with you, and yet thou hast not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, show us the Father? 

Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you, I speak not of myself (on my own authority): but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works‘ sake.’ (John 14:9-11) 

And we’ll end with this admonishment to Thomas who refused to believe that Jesus was indeed risen from the dead until he saw His scars. ‘Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.’ (John 20:29) 

Yes faithful followers, that pertains directly to us, who have believed in Jesus and all that He has said and done, without actually seeing Him in the flesh, like the disciples did. We are indeed blessed for that act of faith! Please don’t doubt, or ever lose that belief. Much LOVE!

…again we say…belief in Jehovah God…is the true beginning…and the sure foundation of…EVERYTHING…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 April 2017 Matthew 26:38.

Matthew 26:38.   Then said he (Jesus) unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye (wait) here, and watch with me.

‘Oh what a beautiful morning! Oh what a beautiful day! Oh what a beautiful morning! Everything’s going my way!’ (smile) Well not exactly everything on this Holy Thursday morn, but sufficient stuff to keep me rather grateful. Glory to God! 

Some of you ole fogies might remember that song from way back when, but it’s still very applicable in these trying times, for everyday that we open our eyes and greet the world, it’s a beautiful day and things are going our way! 

And today I want to especially give thanks and praise to our ever-faithful heavenly Father for getting me out of the quandary that I was in yesterday; meaning having my friend Jackie’s funeral and an important doctor’s appointment the same time to day. 

But in His wonderful mysterious workings I called the doctor’s office and was able to get my appointment time pushed back to later. Thank You Lord! 

I would have been very disappointed if I couldn’t go to Jackie’s memorial service, because over the last year or so we had gotten fairly close, and would take interest in each other’s medical affairs, boosting each other to hang in and hope for the best. 

Right now she indeed has the best, while I am still here doing my pilgrim’s thing, (smile) but with her memory forever etched on my heart. 

And yuh know what friends, our God is so good and wise and wonderful, that the very night before Jackie died, I was watching a programme ‘At the Cross’; a call in religious show for prayer and godly help, and the topic of the night just happened to be, ‘Are you grieving a loss?’ 

And that loss could be anything at all, a house, a dear one, a job, finances, etc. Once the loss touched you severely, there was room for grief. And the host of that night’s programme identified two types of grieving; one he called demonic grief and the other cleansing grief. 

The demonic one was obviously the type of grief that just throws you down and keeps you down for a long time, where you can’t function at all, can’t go on with your life, and there is a lot of bitterness and anger and negative emotions in your soul. 

Meanwhile the cleansing grief is the grief that helps you get over your loss. It may take a long while, but in the meantime you will be able to function, because you have given your grief and sorrow to Christ and He has kept His promise of Matthew 11:29: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.’ 

Yeh friends, that’s the only way that makes sense; take it all to Jesus, admit that you can’t handle it and ask for his saving grace and LOVING-kindness. Then and only then will you be able to handle your grief in a wholesome manner. 

And that is one testimony that I can most definitely attest to; a moment in time I’ll never forget. I’m talking about when my mother unexpectedly went to be with the Lord some years ago while I was in California, an unexpected aura of peace just floated over me. 

I was most surprised by it, and though deep down I was devastated by the loss, I was able to hold up quite well. Some people were skeptical bout my calm attitude, but I never took offense, because I knew that the Spirit of the Lord had imbued me with the peace to set things in order. 

And yuh know what friends? Even Jesus had grieving and sorrowful moments, the main one being His rough moments in the Garden of Gethsemane on the Holy Thursday night before he was crucified. 

Listen to our Bit. ‘Then said he (Jesus) unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye (wait) here, and watch with me.’ 

Yes friends, Jesus agonized over stuff too, that’s why He can understand our human frailties and emotions. Thus the Good Book tells us: ‘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.’ (Matt.26:39) 

Then He went back to the disciples and found them sleeping, and admonished Peter, ‘What could ye not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.’ (Matt.26:40-41) 

Extremely good advice for us to take to heart my brethren! Then Jesus went away and prayed a second time, ‘Saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except (unless) I drink it, thy will be done. And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy. And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words.’ (Matt.26:42-44) 

Yes my people, three times Jesus prayed for the cup to pass away. Meanwhile Luke tells us that during His first prayer session: ‘And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.’ (Luke 22:43-44) 

And the scholars explain thus: 22:43-44. Only Luke notes this. Jesus is borne up in His hour of greatest need, when He must intercede not only for Himself but for His followers, who are about to leave Him in the lurch. 

Agony appears only here in the New Testament; it points to the intensity of Jesus’ struggle. Surely Jesus wrestles not so much with death itself, but with His own destiny to be made the sin-bearer for all mankind for all the ages. The punishment that had to be borne for our sins brings Jesus to His knees in anguish.’  

Now hopefully friends, we’ll truly appreciate the great weight, the severe burden that Jesus had to bear on our behalf, and in future give Him much more thanks and praise. So let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings, which, despite our sinfulness, the Lord still doles out so generously to us. 

‘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!’ 

Now remember a blessing is not a blessing until it’s declared over someone, so let’s go out now and declare blessings over plenty some ones. Much LOVE!

…grief and sorrow are natural human emotions…but through Jesus …we can bear them successfully…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 December 2014 Luke 1:38

Luke 1:38.   And Mary said, Behold the handmaid, (maidservant) of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. and the angel departed from her.

Well Friends, it’s Wednesday, what’s usually the middle day of the workweek! But fortunately for many of us, it is the last day of this workweek… And all God’s people shouted a loud and grateful, ‘Glory Hallelujah!’

Yes my brethren, that’s because it’s Christmas Eve, the day before the big one, the fateful day on which our most wonderful Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, was born, some two thousand years ago. What a momentous occasion my people, one that changed the direction and fate of all humankind!
 
Oh Friends, the birth of God’s Son had to be a wonderful and auspicious moment! Why? Because it meant that our Immanuel, our God was with us in human form, thus adding humanity to His Deity.
 
And I know that many of us are still busy with the preparations for the Great Day tomorrow, but as we go through our motions, please let’s remember the real reason of the season, the real reason why we’re so busy making plans of and for celebration; the birth of Christ!
 
And consequently, let’s try to focus on that, rather than the worldly accoutrements we’re so busy with. Let’s consider what it would have been like if Jesus had not been born, so that we could eventually be reconciled to the Father and thus enjoy His blessed and free gifts of mercy, grace, forgiveness, unconditional LOVE, salvation and eternal life.
 
Oh Friends, whenever I remember or mention those wonderful gifts and attributes of Almighty God, our magnificent and magnanimous Creator, I get all choked up inside, and have to give the Lord a big shout of thanks and praise.
 
Because, just think what our situation would have been like if all that good stuff was not available to us eh, and free to boot. Hn! Our lives would have been totally miserable, and we would have been surely bound for Hades, death, and eternal separation from our heavenly Father!
 
That’s why I say; ‘Thank You Lord! Thank You ever so much for sending Jesus to light the way of darkness, so that we can now look forward to spending eternity in heaven with You, rather than in Hades with Lucifer! Thank You ever so much! We laud and magnify Your Holy Name! Amen!’
 
And today Friends, I just want to highlight the enormous faith of Mary, Jesus’ mother, because I don’t think she gets enough recognition for the great faith she possessed, even before it was such a popular thing.
 
I guess it was partly because she was a woman, living in a very patriarchal society, but without her supreme trust and complete surrender, none of what we’re currently celebrating would be possible.
 
The Good Book tells the story thus: ‘And in the sixth month (of Elisabeth’s pregnancy with John the Baptist) the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused (betrothed, engaged) to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary.
 
And the angel came in unto her and said, Hail (rejoice), thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind (considered) what manner of salutation (greeting) this should be.
 
And the angel said unto her, Fear not Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.
 
He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest (Most High): and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.
 
Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man (I am a virgin)? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest (Most High) shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing (one) which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
 
And behold thy cousin (relative) Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. For with God nothing shall be impossible. And Mary said, Behold the handmaid (maidservant) of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.’ (Luke 1:26-38)
 
Now just imagine that scene nuh Friends! You’re a female, Jewish teenager, living in a backwater town in Galilee, most likely without much formal education, engaged to be married, when this angel suddenly shows up with this outlandish proposal.
 
Wow! Would any of us have taken it so easily, so in stride and even accepted the proposition at all? I doubt it. The first thing was how could she get pregnant without lying with a man? Even in today’s advanced society, where there are all sorts of fertility methods, a man’s sperm is still essential for human reproduction.
 
But just supposing getting pregnant without actual intercourse was possible, we still need to remember Mary’s very sensitive position. If she were found pregnant before marriage, despite all her pleas of innocence, all hell would break loose in the small, steadfastly Jewish town.
 
Joseph, her fiancé would be thoroughly shamed, and become a laughingstock of the community. Mary’s family would be totally devastated, and she would possibly be an outcast for life.
 
But strangely enough my people, none of those possibilities fazed her. She did not even ask for time to consider the proposition. And in all of that, she only asked one question; how could she get pregnant without knowing a man?
 
And surprisingly, she seemed quite satisfied with the angel’s answer.  She obviously felt the leading of the Holy Spirit deep down in her soul and responded accordingly.
 
And so my fellow believers, should we also respond with alacrity when we feel the Spirit of God moving in us, although the circumstances may seem rather difficult, and even impossible in the natural realm, because as Gabriel so rightly said to Mary: ‘FOR WITH GOD NOTHING SHALL BE IMPOSSIBLE!’
 
Let’s remember that today Friends, as we go about making preparations to celebrate the incarnate, seemingly impossible birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! It is indeed worthy to ponder, because it generates wisdom and faith of the highest order! Much LOVE!
 
…faith can move mountains…by turning them into molehills…with the help of Jesus … we just have to believe…