Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 October 2018 John 7:37-38

John 7:37-38.   In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly (heart) shall flow rivers of living water.

‘Sunday morning coming down…’ And the Lord’s sanctuary is filled to overflowing! Bless His holy name! The faithful believers have come to renew their connection to Almighty God; to sing His praises and give Him thanks, hear His Word and receive His body and blood in the symbolic gesture of communion, thereby reawakening and reenergizing their listless and tired souls. 

Wow friends! What a blessing it is to have fellowship every Sunday with other believers under the remarkable auspices of our Creator! So as we do every Sunday, let’s begin the proceedings with some praise and worship to soften up our hearts and make them more receptive to the word. 

And today’s song of praise is that old but magical hymn, ‘Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring,’ taken from the 10th and last movement of the cantata ‘Heart and Mouth and Deed and Life,’ composed by Johann Sebastian Bach in the early 18th century. This version we’re going to sing today, is apparently the most common English one, written by poet laureate Robert Bridges. 

So without further ado, let’s raise our heads, hearts, eyes and voices to high heaven in sweet, adorable and exalted praise, accompanied by the scintillating symphonic music of the master composer, as performed by the full orchestra. As one harmonious choir now: ‘Jesus, joy of man’s desiring, Holy wisdom, LOVE most bright; Drawn by Thee, our souls aspiring Soar to uncreated light. 

Word of God, our flesh that fashioned, With the fire of life impassioned, Striving still to truth unknown, soaring, dying round Thy throne. Through the way where hope is guiding, Hark, what peaceful music rings; Where the flock, in Thee confiding, Drink of joy from deathless springs. Theirs is beauty’s fairest pleasure; Theirs is wisdom’s holiest treasure. Thou dost ever lead Thine own In the LOVE of joys unknown.’ 

And isn’t that the awesome truth my brethren! Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ ALWAYS leads us, His faithful people, with LOVE, to unknown, unbelievable gasps of joy! Praise His Holy Name! Oh friends, Jesus is indeed the joy of our desire!

And why not eh? He has Holy wisdom, the brightest LOVE that exists and shines in the universe, not to mention the everlasting hope of salvation and eternal life He’s provided for us through His ever-faithful promises and sacrificial actions of two thousand years ago. 

Now let’s hear his Word, which fashioned our flesh, then breathed the fire of impassioned life into it, as we strive to uncover unknown truths from it. And today’s scripture deals with ‘Drink of joy from deathless springs.’ Listen as our Lord and Saviour expounds on His abilities with thrilling confidence. 

‘In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly (heart) shall flow rivers of living water.’ (John 7:37-38) 

And can you imagine the confusion those statements caused amongst the mainly ignorant crowd. ‘But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believed on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given, because that Jesus was not yet glorified.’ (John 7:39) 

Yes friends, Jesus was talking about the Holy Spirit that was to come upon every believer after His crucifixion, resurrection and ascension back to heaven. And if we’re truly spiritually thirsty, the best place to seek relief from that thirst is in Jesus.  He is the ONLY one who can quench, can satisfy, can satiate our thirsty souls! 

And in the end of the Good Book, He again declares unto John: ‘I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star’ (Rev.22:16)

And what does this revealing angel make known to John? ‘And the Spirit (Holy Spirit) and the bride (the church) say, Come (to Christ in faith for eternal life). And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst (thirsty) come. And whosoever will (desires), let him take the water of life freely.’ (Rev.22:17) 

Oh friends, you can’t beat that offer! It’s the best offer going in this mish-mash world! And we’ll end with these beautiful words of scripture as prophesied by Isaiah about the Lord’s doings through Jesus.

‘Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation. 

And in that day shall ye say, Praise the Lord, call upon his name, declare his doings (deeds) among the people, make mention that his name is exalted. Sing unto the Lord; for he hath done excellent things: this is known in all the earth. Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion: for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee.’ (Is.12:2-6) 

And our Lord and Saviour is indeed great in our midst my brethren! So let’s be wise and do like the prophet advised nuh; let’s call on His name, declare His deeds, exalt His holy name and above all, accept His free offer of grace, whereby we can receive salvation and eternal life! That is wisdom of everlasting proportions! Much LOVE!

…in Jesus…we have EVERYTHING…we can ever need…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 October 2018 Deuteronomy 26:9.

Deuteronomy 26:9.    And he hath brought us into this place, and hath given us this land, even a land that floweth with milk and honey.

HAPPY  THANKSGIVING  DAY  CANADA!

 

Yes my people, it’s Thanksgiving Day in Canada! Glory to God! As the psalmist says: ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we will rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24) In fact, all weekend we’ve been celebrating and doubly rejoicing. Why? Because we have been obeying the Lord’s ordinance, as delivered to the Israelites by Moses, bringing the fruits of our prosperity to offer it before the Lord, sending portions to the poor and offering succour to the stranger! 

And why wouldn’t we eh my brethren when ‘He hath brought us into this place, and hath given us this land, even a land that floweth with milk and honey.’ And does this great land of Canada ever flow with milk and honey? It surely does, because we are living so much better than most of the world. Oh, like everyone else, we have our problems, but thankfully we have not sunk as deep in the mire as some of the other countries around. 

We have not pushed God out of our society as much as they have. But if we continue on the wide and destructive path we’re currently on, we will eventually get like them. And the only thing that will stop us is by concentrating on staying on the straight and narrow path of Jesus; fomenting His LOVE Revolution, and thus keeping God first place in our society. And to do that successfully, we need all Christian hands on deck because it’s a formidable task, and no one else can do it, or is even interested in doing so.

Hn! Looks like I’ve preached the Sermon before the preamble. (smile) Anyway, the Holy Spirit knows where it’s leading me. And let’s not forget that today is Monday; the day so many of us LOVE to hate. And Glory be! It’s a holiday in this great land, therefore many of us won’t be going out to labour today… 

And I hear a great groan from those who have to go to work because our modern society runs 24/7. But as always, we do have the cure for your Monday Blues. We call it our Monday Morning Battle Hymn! And it does work. So let’s get to it nuh…with whatever enthusiasm you can muster. 

‘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 all God’s people continued with a loud, hearty and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord!’ as they feel their spirits miraculously lifted and their minds and bodies become more alert. Oh friends, that’s the power of the Holy Spirit; the worker bee of the Holy Trinity! And if we’re wise, we’ll pay more attention to Him as He tries to guide us in godly fashion, moment by moment. 

And as always, the loudest and most raucous voices belong to those not going to work and have been deeply involved in the celebrations. And before I forget, for all you celebrators, Granny’s warning is a must this weekend. Don’t care if yuh tired hearing it, but it will protect your soul! Sonny Boy; drunk or sober, please mind your business!  

Now getting back to the Thanksgiving story, here is some interesting scripture the Israelites were told by Moses to say and do after they had presented their offering of first fruits. ‘And now, behold I have brought the first fruits of the land, which thou, O Lord, hast given me. And thou shalt set it before the Lord thy God, and worship before the Lord thy God: And thou shalt rejoice in every good thing which the Lord thy God hath given unto thee, and unto thine house, thou, and the Levite, and the stranger that is among you.’ (Deut.26:10-11) 

Yes friends, it’s our God-given right to enjoy the fruits of our labour with the poor and the stranger in our midst, but only after we have given the Lord His share first. Remember, EVERYTHING belongs to the Lord, and it’s only through His grace and LOVING-kindness that we are able to get wealth and become prosperous. So for those of us not going to work today, let’s rejoice and celebrate in the gifts God has blessed us with, but also remember to share our blessings with the less fortunate. Much LOVE!

…give thanks to the Lord…for His goodness endures forever…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 October 2018 Proverbs 4:26.

Proverbs 4:26.    Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established.

 

And I can see all the joyful smiles and hear all the joyful conversation simply because it’s Friday, and the working population has only the upcoming weekend on their minds. What a way our attitudes can change from one day to the next, when something that seems good is on the horizon. Wish we could have that joyful attitude come next Monday morning. (smile) 

And there is no stopping the ordinary workingman come Friday morning, for he will sing his song, come hell or high water. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday mih breddren! The weekend come…and while it brings joy to our lives, it brings tears to the slave massa’s eyes, because he has to pay us for not working for two whole days! Glory be! 

You wouldn’t know how that eats away at his thieving sinful soul. But God is good…and fair too. And after plenty fighting and dying we finally get some days off with pay. Wow! And as always, we going to party hearty and celebrate that fact, because we entitled to enjoy the fruits of our labour! Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Ah friends, the workingman does make some good points in his song, but just goes too far out on the limb in pursuit of the ripest, juiciest fruit. Yes my brethren, there is inherent danger in pursuing that at the edge of the limb, it’s liable to break more easily, because it’s usually smaller and more brittle out there. And when the bough breaks, you’ll fall, and down will come cradle, baby and all. (smile) 

And as that pertains to our Christian faith walk, it means allowing the enemy to get into our lives and settling in to spoil them, and have us walk away from Jesus, rather than with Him. Now that’s one thing we definitely don’t want to happen, and the best way to avoid it is to stay away from what appears to be the juiciest fruit at the edge of the limb. 

We need to erect some boundaries as to how far we’re going to go, so that we don’t invite the enemy into our lives. That’s why our Friday Chant is different from the workingman’s song, with more circumspection and awareness of the pitfalls of unbridled carnal living. So let’s chant our Friday Chant nuh, with even more enthusiasm than the workingman, because we know that we have Jesus on our side. Glory to God! 

Altogether 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.’ 

Ah friends, to live sincerely for Jesus means always being aware of the world around you and its constant efforts to make you succumb to its evil ways. But we’re blessed, for Jesus’ Holy Spirit that dwells within us warns us of the pitfalls. Oh, we don’t always pay attention to, or take heed to the Holy Spirit’s advice, so we have no one else to blame but ourselves, when that unwise attitude gets us into trouble. 

That’s why Cousin Sol warns us in our Bit and beyond: ‘Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil.’ (Prov.4:26-27) And that jells nicely with these words of the Lord spoken through the prophet Isaiah. ‘And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.’ (Is.30:21) 

Yes friends, anytime we veer off the straight and narrow path that Jesus advises us to follow, we will hear His Holy Spirit calling us back to it, for the broad way of the world only leads to eventual destruction. As Cousin Sol further declares: (Chuh! Spelled it wrong again). ‘For the ways of man are before the eyes of the Lord, and he pondereth (weighs, observes) all his goings.’ (Prov.5:21) 

So please don’t foolishly believe that we can do stuff that the Lord doesn’t see, because His eyes are always on our goings and comings. That’s why we have to pay close attention to the warning against disobedience in Hebrews: ‘Wherefore lift up (strengthen) the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way (dislocated); but let it rather be healed.’ (Heb.12:12-13) 

And the scholars explain: ‘12:12-13. Some of the runners of verse 1 have grown so weary that they have become stooped and need spiritual strength to be straightened up again. They must be given help, yet they themselves also must strengthen their paths by avoiding obstacles that would spiritually trip them up.’ 

Yuh see friends, neither the Lord, nor our fellow man can or will do everything for us. At some stage of the game we need to strengthen ourselves, pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps and set out eyes firmly on that straight and narrow path. 

And here’s a fitting end from Hebrews to today’s message. ‘Follow (pursue) peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.’ (Heb.12:14) So let’s be wise and try our best to do that nuh my people! Much LOVE!

…there’s only ONE way to stay on the straight and narrow…keep your eyes fixed steadfastly on Jesus…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 September 2018 Matthew 7:14.

Matthew 7:14. Because strait (how narrow) is the gate, and narrow (difficult or confined) is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

 

Awright friends, it’s bright and sunshiny out there, so let’s get with the thanks and praise, as we all joyfully declare: ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’ 

And we’d be very foolish and ungrateful not to do so my brethren, because that’s why the Lord made the beautiful day – so that His precious people could enjoy it. Glory to our Most High God, whose kind, gracious and LOVING thoughts are always upon us, ‘thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end (a future and a hope).’ (Jer.29:11) 

Yes my dear brethren in Christ, our God only has our best interest at heart, but we foolishly screw it up when we don’t pay Him His much-deserved obeisance and obedience. Anyway, He’s also overflowing with forgiveness, so when we realize the error of our ways and come to Him in sincere repentance, He WILL have mercy on our poor human souls, and forgive us. That’s just how magnanimous and generous He is! 

And that’s why the workingman, even in his somewhat mislead agenda, can cry out in thanks and appreciation this Friday morning to the Most High: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! MamaYo! The weekend is at hand; the time to celebrate life is upon us. So what we waiting for eh? Let’s celebrate life! 

We alive and kicking, and the wisest man ever, Solomon, said that it was good for a man to eat drink and enjoy the fruits of his labour! So leh we do that nuh, celebrate the end of another back breaking week of slave-like labour, as we give thanks for Fridays and weekends!’ 

Ah friends, as always, I have no complaints re the workingman’s song, except that he takes the celebrating thing a little too far, so that he opens wide the door for Lucifer and his evil minions to get a foothold in his soul. And that’s why, as believers, our Friday Chant is somewhat different; still exuberant and enthusiastic, but with tighter boundaries and a li’l more circumspection. So let’s chant up a storm now nuh, as we declare our thanks for the weekend to Almighty God. 

‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yes people, we have to be careful to not go too far out on the limb of freedom, so that we don’t allow the enemy to muddy our clean, clear waters. And remember too, that not because a wide door or path has been opened to us, that we have to go through or take it, for oftimes, it is the enticement of the enemy. 

That’s why Jesus warned us: ‘Enter ye in at the strait (narrow) gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in there at. Because strait (how narrow) is the gate, and narrow (difficult or confined) is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.’ (Matt.7:13-14) 

 And that’s the God awesome truth friends! Living and working for Jesus, does take away some of our wiggle room. (smile) Meanwhile, Luke puts it thus: ‘Strive to enter in at the strait (narrow) gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.’ (Luke 13:24) Yes my brethren, the way to eternal life is narrow and fraught with difficulty, and only those who sincerely seek it and are willing to pay the price will find it. 

And it’s not only narrow, but there’s only ONE WAY, that through Jesus, as He succinctly informed doubting Thomas. ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.’ (John 14:6) Right there you have that narrow, one-way street to eternal life my people! Jesus didn’t mince words; He told it exactly like it is: ONLY through Him can one get to the Father and bypass eternal damnation with Lucifer in the lake of fire! 

So what’s it going to be eh: eternal salvation in the amazing company of our Triune God, or hell fire and damnation with the fallen angels? It’s a decision each individual has to make for themself; nobody else can make it for you. They can suggest it, or even lead you to that narrow path, but it’s always going to be your decision to tread or not to tread it. 

 Let’s hope today my people, that we all make the wise decision; that to follow Jesus on the narrow but difficult and self-sacrificing path to victory and everlasting life. It’s the best and wisest decision we can ever make in this lifetime! And we will never regret it, all the way through eternity! Much LOVE!

…if Christ…who cannot lie…says He is the ONLY way to the Father…then it must be true…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 September 2018 Daniel 9:9.

Daniel 9:9.    To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him.

Ah mih breddren, I know you’re feeling it in your soul; the fact that you have to go out and labour this Monday morning! Hn, Hn! And yuh know what? Many of us will feel like that at the beginning of every week for most, if not all of our working lives. It’s just something about being away from work, for even a couple of days, that causes a disconnect, and it’s so difficult to reconnect. (smile) 

I think too that the human spirit has a built in aversion to very word ‘work’, as it brings to mind, toil, physical labour and all those things that run counter to our human nature. So please don’t beat yourself up if you’re one of those who have problems getting it together on Mondays, even though you’ve rested and fellowshipped and done all the right things. Just join with us as we take it to Jesus in prayer, in our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

Believe me, it will do you a lot of good; lift your spirits and have you chomping at the bit to get out there and do excellent and diligent work for Jesus. I like to call it our antidote for all that ails us on a Monday morning. So let’s get busy and sing; sing with as much enthusiasm as you can muster, but make sure that your heart’s sincere. 

All together 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!’ 

Oh mih people, yuh see the ole fella wasn’t lying when he said that it would do you good; lift your spirits and get you enthused for Jesus! Glory be mih breddren! There’s nothing like sincere and humble prayer to lift our spirits and get us back on the tried and true narrow path where Jesus reigns secure! 

And today I just want to remind us, to bring to our attention, the wonderful God we serve and worship, the way Daniel did when he prayed for his sinful people. He said: ‘O Lord, to us belongeth confusion (shame) of face, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee.’ (Dan.9:8) And believe me people, we are living in the most sinful times ever. 

Daniel thought his time was bad, but today he would hold his head and bawl at the atrocities and shameful stuff that we’re doing, and even considering some of it normal and right. Steups! Our world’s leadership is petty, greedy, self-seeking and ever so hungry for wealth and power! And to that end, the latest trend is that they all want to be dictators, but they are the most inept and inefficient group of leaders I’ve seen in my life time. And yuh know what? 

Unfortunately their behaviour sets the tone for our society’s lifestyle and behaviour. And it’s sad how we adopt their bad habits, including turning away from God. Ah friends, it’s a good thing we have the God we do have yes, otherwise crapaud surely smoke we pipe! For as Daniel rightly says in our Bit:‘To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him.’ 

And all God’s people declared a loud and grateful ‘Thank You Lord for not giving us our just desserts, but instead showering us with your LOVING-kindness and forgiveness!’ And so should we be ever grateful and thankful! Oh friends, I don’t know what it’s going to take for us to realize the seriousness of our world situation nuh, with all the negative, ungodly stuff we’re so blithely and blatantly affirming. 

And as the psalmist rightly asks in Psalm 130: ‘If thou, Lord, shouldest mark (take note of) iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?’ (Ps.130:3) And the overwhelming answer to that is ‘NOBODY!’ Why? ‘For all have sinned and come (fallen) short of the glory of God.’ (Rom.3:23) Yes friends, we have all gone astray, overstepped our boundaries, transgressed God’s law! Put it any way you want it, we’re simply not good enough to stand before a holy and almighty God in our own right. 

However, as the psalmist continues: ‘But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared (reverenced with awe). I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope. My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning’ (Ps.130:4-6) That’s how strong the psalmist faith was!  

And in closing, I’d like to strongly advise us all to do as he suggests; wait and watch for the Lord and faithfully and patiently hope in His word, ‘for with the Lord there is mercy (LOVING-kindness), and with him is plenteous (abundant) redemption.’ (Ps.130:7b) Much LOVE!

…only by embracing God’s mercy and forgiveness…will we escape eternal damnation…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 September 2018 2 John 7.

2 John 7.   For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

It’s glorious out there friends! Both the sun and the Son are shining forth in all their brilliant glory! That’s why we can joyfully acclaim: ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we WILL rejoice and be glad in it! Most definitely my brethren! We’d be foolish not to rejoice in the good things our generous God has so richly provided, for they do outweigh whatever adversity comes against us. 

And I know that a lot of people are facing serious adversity all over the world, like those in North Carolina facing the ravages of hurricane Florence. But what yuh going to do eh? Just sit and bemoan your misfortune? That’s not going to help any, just make you feel worse. We need to get up and do what we can to ease the situation ourselves, plus have a good attitude, while turning prayerfully to God, our Creator and Provider. 

Remember friends, it’s God who created us and allows whatever comes against us to do so, so it just makes good sense to turn to Him in times of need. Remember too that He has promised never to leave nor forsake us, so He won’t leave us in the lurch all on our lonesome. If he decides that we should battle through the adversity, then He will be in there battling with us. That’s for sure! 

And the workingman gives us a good example of facing adversity in his song. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! Glory be! It’s the weekend and no more labour, no more labour, no more labour for that  wicked man called massa! He can’t touch me now, so I’ll just do my own thing; eat and drink and party hearty! And when I go back Monday, if I go back, I’ll deal with that then! But right now it’s the weekend which spells, party time! Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Yes, he is pushing a bit to the extreme, but he’s not allowing his unfortunate work predicament to spoil his overall attitude. And so should we, my fellow believers. That’s why we have our Friday Chant; to keep us level headed and aware of what’s happening. As followers of Jesus, we can’t behave like the workingman, we need some more circumspection in our faith walk, but that doesn’t preclude us from having fun, fun within certain boundaries. 

So let’s chant up a storm today nuh! In unison and with sincere sincerity: (smile) ‘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 mih breddren, it’s time to relax from our weekly labour, but not get so relaxed that we forget about Lucifer and his ever constant attacks against our immortal souls. For as John the Revelator tells us in our Bit: ‘For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.’ 

And the scholars offer this explanation: ‘7. The deceivers seem to have been Gnostics, pseudo-Christian individuals who denied that the Son of God had really taken on human flesh (see 1 John 2:18-27, 4:1-6). John realizes that to attack the doctrine of the Incarnation (Christ’s taking on human flesh) is to strike at the very root of Christianity.’ 

And it is! For how else would we get a sinless body to atone for our sins eh? Anybody born of man and woman will always have a sinful nature and won’t qualify as propitiation, atonement or worthwhile sacrifice for the myriad of sins we commit against a most holy God. Thus John warns: ‘Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought (worked for), but that we receive a full reward.’ (2 John 8) 

Now hear the scholars on that verse: ‘8. The first and third we should probably be “you” (plural) according to many ancient manuscripts. It is dangerous for any person, including a believer, to follow teachings contrary to Scripture.’ 

And so it is! ‘Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.’ (2 John 9) And per that verse, the scholars advise: ‘9. John makes Christology the central doctrine of the faith.’ But what else could it be eh? If the basic doctrine of Christ is not the central theme in the study and advocacy of Christ, then the whole thing is false. 

So John continues his warning. ‘If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him (give him a greeting) Godspeed. For he that biddeth him (greets him) Godspeed is partaker of (shares in) his evil deeds.’ (2 John 10-11) 

And if you’re wondering why that is, listen to the scholars’ explanation. ‘10-11. In the early decades of Christianity, local churches were planted and sustained by itinerant preachers and teachers. For those workers to survive, it was necessary for believers to show hospitality. However, one had to be sure that he was not aiding and abetting false teachers, that is, those with unorthodox views of the person and work of Christ. 

To take such people in, John says, is to endorse their teaching. John’s command forbids true Christians to actively support the ministry of false teachers. It is not a prohibition against having non-Christians (e.g. unsaved family members or neighbours) into one’s home – unless, of course, they are spreading anti-Christian doctrine, and seeking to use one’s home as a base of operations.’ 

And you know what friends? All of that still holds true today, because there are even more false teachers and preachers out there than in John’s time. So please, let’s be careful as to whom and what we open ourselves to nuh in these trying and oh so deceitful end times. Much LOVE!

…if you don’t believe exactly what Jesus says about Jesus…then you’re not believing the truth…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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