Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 February 2020 1 Peter 2:2.

1 Peter 2:2.    ​As newborn babes, desire the sincere (pure) milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby.
 

Another Monday friends… Yes, one more in the long line of Mondays lined up for us to go through in our work experience! And hopefully some of us might eventually wise up and realize that it doesn’t make sense to go through the Monday morning blues every week, and thus find ways to minimize the weekly frustrations and consequently decrease our stress levels and add a modicum of happiness to our lives. (smile) That’s the basic hope of our Monday offering. 

But sadly, for whatever reason(s), not all of us will be able to do that, which means we will always have need for our Monday Morning Battle hymn to help us get our Monday fix of spiritual adrenaline from heaven on high, through the Holy Spirit. Now that’s not a bad thing, but with age and experience, we’re expected to achieve spiritual maturity, meaning our food types ought to improve too, move from soft, baby food, to adult stuff, like meat and spuds. (smile) 

But my people, what the Lord desires more than anything else is that we come to Him, in whatever state we’re in, humbly and sincerely when we need help, regardless of whether we’re still eating baby food when by age and Christian experience, we should be eating solid stuff. (smile) So let’s come before Him now nuh, humbly and sincerely crying out for help, but confidently expecting Him to help, because that’s His awesome promise, and He keeps His promises. 

Altogether now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

And our God is so wonderful, that the answer is on the way before we’ve even finished our supplication! Wow! Give Him some thanks and praise my fellow believers (steups!) for being such and awesome and compassionate Deity! Just look at how we’re all energized and smiling, how our attitudes have suddenly changed, and now we’re excited to go out and work for Jesus! That’s the power of the Holy Spirit friends doing the Father’s timely bidding! 

And today friends, we want to talk about spiritual immaturity, the fact that we ought to grow in our Christian faith and move on from Christianity 101 to higher grades and not have to keep repeating the elementary aspects of our faith. There are several scriptures in the Good Book that deal with the subject, a few of which we want to share, beginning with Peter’s admonishment: ‘Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings, As newborn babes, desire the sincere (pure) milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby.’ (1 Pet. 2:1-2) 

Yuh see that friends, young Christians, like babies need milk to grow, they too need to learn the elementary aspects of God’s Word. But unfortunately, many of us don’t grow spiritually, we remain carnal, doing the things that Peter advises against. Thus Bruh Paul also had to admonish the Corinthians. 

‘And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. I have fed you with milk, and not with meat (solid food); for hitherto (until now) ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able. For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions (dissensions), are ye not carnal (fleshly), and walk as men? For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?’ (1 Cor.3:1-4) 

Of course they are, since spiritually minded believers (steups!) don’t fight about who converted or baptized them, because it’s team work. As Bruh Paul says two verses later: ‘I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.’ (1 Cor. 3:6) Yeh friends, whatever work we do for God, in the long run, it’s He who causes our work to bear fruit. Let’s remember that and stop arguing amongst ourselves as to who’s doing better than the other, because that only causes strife and disunity and destroys our witness. 

Unfortunately, the continual warfare between the flesh and the spirit is a human trait that still exists, and is still causing disunity and division in Christ’s church today. As it was embarrassing to Bruh Paul with the Corinthians, so it is embarrassing today to see people who should know better, because of their long walk as Christians, still fighting and envying over petty stuff. And the scholars tell us that the flesh and spirit warfare was a big part of Bruh Paul’s writings, (cf.  Rom.7:14-8:13; Gal.5:17). Please check out those scriptures, for they are very important and enlightening. (smile) 

And the author of Hebrews didn’t pull any punches, but put it all in a direct manner. In his appeal to believe, he writes: ‘Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered (explained), seeing ye are dull of hearing. For when for the time (by this time) ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles (sayings) of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat (solid food). 

For every one that useth (partakes of) milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat (solid food) belongeth to them that are of full age (mature), even those who by reason of use (practice) have their senses exercised  (trained) to discern both good and evil.’ (Heb. 5:11-14) 

Ah mih people, too many of us are still drinking milk when we should be eating solid food, and it’s only causing serious problems in our church and our world. Please, for Christ’s sake, and with the Lord’s help, let’s try and do better nuh. Much LOVE!

…there is too much warfare…between too many immature believers (yeah!)…in Christ’s church…  
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 October 2018 Psalm 55:22.

Psalm 55:22.    Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer (permit) the righteous to be moved (shaken).
 

 

Another, warm, bright and sunshiny day! Glory to God! Yes friends, yesterday was a beautiful summer’s day, with temps in the twenties, and today promises to be another of the same. How wonderful it is to have two such days in mid October eh!

And yuh know the trees have hardly shed any leaves as yet, many of them are still even as green as the months of spring. But we know that won’t last for much longer, so we’ll enjoy it as much as possible. 

And saying that, I couldn’t pass up sharing this wonderful bit of encouragement with you. It’s called ‘I Asked for a Sign,’ and comes from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin.

Please pray with me. ‘Even as I answer your letter, you are perhaps still waiting while God sends only silence. There is no sudden hailstorm, no writing in the sky. The crisis is real, and you don’t want to be presumptuous. 

Like Gideon in Judges 6, you want to feel the wet fleece. Or the dry fleece – you don’t care which one. You just want to know! You don’t stand alone! All of us who walk with God face conflicts that involve urgent decisions.

God is not a God of confusion. We can know His will. When our faith is very new, He may send a sign to fortify us. However, I am convinced that God’s highest intention is to free us from unnecessary “props.” 

He wants to buttress us, not baby us. Above all, He wants us to trust His Word, not the wool! When He encourages us to hope in a promise, that hope may be our only evidence. At this moment you can’t see ahead.

However, you can still be incorrigibly (incurably) hopeful! You can anticipate as you wait, knowing that God will never disappoint the hope He Himself implants. He is never late. Remember. Not the wool but His Word!’ 

Ah mih people, yuh see why I had to share it. Too many of us believers need a sign to do God’s will. When God called Gideon to lead his people out to battle, he hemmed and hawed and desired a sign about the wet fleece. And even when he got it, he asked for the fleece to come up dry. And only after the Lord granted him the sign did he get the chutzpah to get up and go. 

But the Lord doesn’t want to be continually spoon-feeding us with signs and wonders before we have the necessary gumption to do His will. He’s given us his Word, in which lies all the hope we need. I’m sure that if asked, we’d all say that God never breaks His promise, so why are we so reluctant to act on His Word eh, when it is filled with so many promises that will never be broken? 

My brethren, we have to get stronger and more mature if we ever hope to make a positive difference in this evil world. Let’s stop looking for signs, instead, let’s be buttressed by the omnipotent Word of our omnipotent God!

The problem here though is that we don’t read, understand and accept His Word as much as we ought to. So obviously if you don’t have the Word as a strong foundation in your soul, you won’t be able to stand strong and steadfast on the wonderful hope that it contains. 

You’ll always be like a baby, needing to be spoon fed, needing milk, not able to eat solid food. Like the author of Hebrews wrote to his audience. ‘For when the time (by this time) ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles (sayings) of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat (solid food). 

For every one that useth (partakes of) milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat (solid food) belongeth to them that are of full age (mature), even those who by reason of use (practice) have their sense exercised (trained) to discern both good and evil.’ (Heb.5:12-14) 

Yes my people, only as we grow in knowledge of God’s Word and put it into practice, stand steadfast in hope in His promises, will we ever mature and become as Christ-like as possible. And remember that’s God’s overall purpose and desire for us all: to become like His Son! 

And the Bible Promise for the poem above, which is also our Bit, says it in spades: ‘Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer (permit) the righteous to be moved (shaken).’

Oh friends, that’s the gospel truth! Bruh David said it in his cry against deceitful friends, and it’s only because he kept the Lord first place in his heart that he was able to successfully undergo all the calamity that came against him in his lifetime. 

And since the Lord never changes, and His promises are always faithful, He will do the same for us, but we have to put our sincere trust and faith in Him. Now let’s go home declaring (spelled it right) our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know of our great faith and trust in Almighty God! 

In strong voice, with sincere hearts:  ‘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!’ 

Oh my brethren, what a great joy it is to walk in lockstep with Christ! There’s nothing else that can compare to it! So please be wise and take His safe and LOVING hand…NOW! Much LOVE!

…if walking with Christ on earth is so great…can you imagine what it will be like in eternity…NO…our minds are too finite and puny…(smile)

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 May 2018 John 17:16.

John 17:16.   They are not OF the world, even as I am not OF the world.

Aye friends, it’s a wet one in my area today. And the rain can be so beguiling… Earlier on, for over half an hour, I lay in my bed tossing and turning from side to side, knowing that I was not going back to sleep, especially since my nostrils were all blocked up and my mouth was dry as chip, but yuh think I could get up, as I listened to the gentle rain falling outside? 

No way! There’s just something about the rain that makes you want to stay in bed and curl up under the covers next to your special someone. And don’t forget its potent aphrodisiac properties! (smile) 

And today the Lord pointed me to some stuff I have written here on a piece of paper. I don’t know who or where I got them from, possibly from Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley), but I’m sure we’re not going to like them. They have to do with our behaviour as true and faithful believers in Jesus Christ. 

And they advise: 1. Don’t leap to judgement. 2. Take blame and give credit. 3. Don’t one up people, encourage them. 4. If it hurts say so, but don’t hit back. 5. Pray for your competitors. 

Mamacita! All of that goes against the very grain of our human nature! But that’s the way our Leader and Lord and Saviour wants us to operate in this crazy, selfish and greedy world. That’s how others will know that we’re different from the madding crowd and hopefully come to realize that we have what they’re missing and oh so badly need; the eternal and unconditional LOVE and saving grace of Jesus. 

And as we look back on those five things above, if we’re true to ourselves we will admit that they all play a major part in our lives. We all leap to judgement too quickly, with absolutely no relevant facts at hand. We just see or hear someone and we can spout a litany of things that are wrong with them. 

And when coming to taking blame…Hn! That does not exist in our current society. We’re all about pointing fingers at others and hogging whatever credit there is for ourselves. Oh, and one-upmanship is the name of today’s game. Yuh ever listen to group of people talking about their possessions? 

Each one comes up with something better than the other. And that’s one of the reasons why so many of us are so stressed out and miserable; foolishly, we’re trying too hard to keep up with the Joneses. 

And when it comes to being hurt, we’ll certainly let you know, but the trouble is that we also look for vengeance. But remember the Lord says that vengeance is His, and He will repay. Well I won’t even touch praying for our competitors, because that is definitely out of our behavioural sphere. Oh yes, we’ll pray for them, but for them to go under, not to succeed. 

Oh friends, please remember that we’re supposed to be IN the world but not OF the world; meaning we should not behave as the world does. No wonder Jesus prayed to the Father on our behalf: ‘And now I come to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves. 

I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil (evil one). They are not OF the world, even as I am not OF the world.’ (John 17:13-16) 

Ah mih people, what more can I say eh? Not a whole lot. Jesus prayed that we would not get involved with the world order even though we lived amongst it. That was necessary so that we could tell others about and show by example the good news He ushered into this world. 

And Bruh Paul reiterated the same sentiments to the church at Rome. ‘And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.’ (Rom.12:2) 

Oh my people, we can’t be IN the world, but not OF it, unless we completely renew our minds and bring it into line with the will of God. And the scholars offer this explanation on that subject: Dedication to the will of God. 

‘12:1-2. God’s will refers to His purpose for the life of the believer. It implies His guidance or direction in ALL of life’s decisions. Dedication is an act of surrender or submission to His will for our lives whereby we become a “living sacrifice.” Daily dependence on God results in our transformation into the image of Christ. 

Illustration: When we seek to discern the will of God we must also be committed to doing the will of God as it is revealed in the Word of God. (John 7:17) Application: The believer should evaluate every decision on the basis of biblical principles, knowing that obedience brings God’s blessing. (First Ref. Gen. 22:12; Primary Ref. Rom.12:1).’ 

The long and short of the story my brethren, is that we’re to live the will of God as found in His Word. And the only way we’re going to find out that will is by reading and studying His Word. So let’s get on with it nuh, so that we can all become the ‘living sacrifices’ that our Lord desires. 

Now it’s time to go home letting the world know who and whose we are by declaring our Tuesday Mantra. All together now, in full voice and complete sincerity: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved 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!’ 

And the corollary to that: let’s go out and generously share what Jesus has given us. Much LOVE!

…God’s basic wish for us all…to become Christ-like clones…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 August 2017 Ephesians 5:10.

Ephesians 5:10.   Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

Oh friends, another bright and glorious morning has dawned in my neighbourhood! All thanks to our wonderful God, who gives us our daily bread and heavenly mercies brand new, each and every day! 

What would we do without Him in our lives eh? I don’t know, and I don’t want to find out either. (smile) That’s why we should try at all times to walk faithfully in His word and have constant companionship with Him. 

And please remember, it’s not for His benefit, but for ours. He is God, and controls EVERYTHING! We are His creation, His minions, made to serve and worship Him and spread the good news gospel of His Son, Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ around the entire world. All the while walking in LOVE! 

Now here is some solid advice from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that will help us to do just that. It was given to a young lady having a hard time living with a non-believing husband, but it also applies to all of us across the board. It’s four DON’TS and four DO’S. 

First the DON’TS (1) Don’t push. (2) Don’t preach. (3) Don’t pretend. (4) Don’t puncture his (or anyone else’s) self-esteem. 

And the DO’s tell us: (1) Do permeate your home with LOVE. (2) Do practice forgiving. (3) Do pay compliments to him (and also others) often. (4) Do persist in prayer. 

What a simple but very wonderful and workable way to live my brethren! Oh…there’s one more DON’T. ‘Don’t ever, ever, ever give up!’ 

And yuh know friends, that last DON’T is possibly the most important of them all, for with Jesus, and those who walk steadfastly with Him, there is absolutely NO giving up! 

We need to persevere in the faith and pursue His plan for our lives right to the very end. We need to run our race of life with enthusiasm and chutzpah, patience and perseverance, so that at the end we’ll receive the crown of glory that the Lord has prepared for all those who successfully finish the race. 

And on a point of interest, the lady who gave the advice above, a year later, received a thank-you note from the other lady, informing her that that strategy was working. 

Glory to God my people! Yuh see it works! (smile) We just have to be serious about it and keep working at it… with a LOVING heart, like Jesus does. 

And the scripture promise for that reading today is also our Bit. ‘Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.’ 

And what does that mean? The scholars explain: ‘5:10. Because of constant temptation and solicitations to evil, believers must always be proving or discerning what is and what is not acceptable unto the Lord.’ 

Yes friends, as Christians, we ought always to be considering what is right and wrong in God’s sight, and do the right thing. It’s not an easy row to hoe because of the numerous distractions and temptations floating around our society, but with God’s help, we can certainly discern the right from the wrong. 

Before our Bit, explaining the way of the believer, Bruh Paul said it thus: ‘Let no man deceive you with vain (empty) words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children (sons) of disobedience. Be not therefore partakers with them. For ye were sometimes (once) darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light.’ (Eph.5:6-8) 

And the scholars offer this explanation of that last verse. ‘5:8. Darkness indicates that the readers used to be spiritually unenlightened, and accompanying this ignorance was immorality with its resultant guilt and misery. Light denotes that the recipients are now to be religiously informed. Their knowledge of the truth is attended by moral purity and happiness.’ 

Oh friends, life is so much better and more fruitful when we walk as children of light! That’s why Bruh Paul admonished the church at Rome thus: ‘I beseech you therefore brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable (rational) service. 

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.’ (Rom.12:1-2) 

Ah mih people, God has done so much for us, washing and cleansing and redeeming us from sin and offering us salvation, through Christ, that we now need to be clean before Him. And since our bodies were the original instruments of sin, we now need to present them ‘to God as a channel through which the righteousness of God is manifested.’ 

And we do that by not conforming to the sinful, evil and immoral works, attitudes and behaviour of the world. And since we are indeed the righteousness in Christ (smile) we can now go home declaring our Wednesday Wail which supports that contention. 

All together 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!’ 

Oh friends, what more can we ask eh? Absolutely NOTHING! Much LOVE!

…if you’re walking with Jesus…and don’t have a peaceful joy in your soul…then something is seriously wrong…ask Him to help you fix it…