Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 November 2019 Mark 2:22.

Mark 2:22.    ​And no man putteth new wine into old bottles (wineskins): else the new wine doth burst the bottles, and the wine is spilled, and the bottle will be marred (ruined): but new wine must be put into new bottles.
 

Oh brother, I can’t believe how dark it is still is in my area at eight o’clock on this early November morning! Not even a wisp of sunlight is showing on the eastern horizon. But the good thing is that it’s not raining…at least not yet. (smile) Nowadays, who knows what the weather will turn out to be on any given day, so it’s best not to worry about it. Just remember that Jesus is our Lord, Saviour and Guiding Light, and once He is in us, and we are in Him, then everything will work out for good eventually, as He faithfully promised! Glory to our great and ever-LOVING God! 

And since we said it’s Saturday, I guess it’s time to look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first one says: ‘One small positive thought can change your whole day.’ And that’s the absolute truth my people! And we have the perfect example above, where we just think about Jesus, and our whole day gets brighter! There’s no more positive thought that that! So let’s wake up thinking on Jesus…and during the day think on Him…and go to bed at night…still thinking on Him! Wow! That way our whole day will be positive! (smile) 

Now listen to this next quote: ‘Every new day is another chance to change your life.’ I certainly can’t dispute that reasoning, for everyday that we’re given to breathe God’s air, is a new chance to improve our lives. God gives it to us because He knows that we need more time to come to Him, to grow more Christ-like and to complete the work He’s assigned us. So please, let’s not waste every new day that we’ve been so generously given nuh. Instead, as the old people would say, make hay while the sun shines, because you don’t know when the sun will stop shining, neither for how long, and if it isn’t shining, then you certainly can’t make hay. (smile) That means you can’t waste time; you must do whatever you have to do while there’s time – that means today – since there’s no guarantee that we’ll ever see tomorrow. Were the ole people ever so wise my brethren! Wish we were even half as wise. 

That brings us to this quote: ‘When life changes to be harder, change yourself to be stronger.’ Ah friends, that’s the only way to survive, for if you don’t get stronger as life gets harder, life will only beat you down. And this life is certainly getting harder, despite all our improvements and amenities. And don’t fool yuh fat either (don’t be deceived), for some reason I can’t fathom, life just enjoys beating us down. I’ve seen it happen often enough in my three score and ten. So you have to possess plenty belly and backbone to live what we call life. You also have to keep improving, keep adding to the strength of your backbone and belly everyday, because life doesn’t ever take a day off, so neither can you. And we all know the best way to do that is by accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour and let him lead and guide our mis-mash lives! 

And here’s another area where following Jesus will come in ever so handy. ‘Opportunities are usually disguised as hard work, so most people don’t recognize them.’ Oh my people, is that ever so true! Very few good opportunities are ever easy. I guess by definition they are innately difficult, and in this lazy, selfish, greedy society of ours, hard work is something we don’t relish. We don’t even want to work, much less work hard. That’s why so many glorious opportunities are passing us by in this prosperous society where good opportunities abound…if we’re only willing to work hard at them. Here again, with Jesus running our lives, we will see the opportunities, and we will work diligently and excellently to bring them to fruition. Glory be! 

Now here’s the last quote: ‘Old ways won’t open new doors.’ But we still try anyway. As Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say; ‘You can’t keep doing the same thing and expect a different result.’ So we’ve got to stop trying to open new doors with old ways. That brings us to some very interesting  words of Jesus when asked by John’s disciples, why they and the Pharisees fasted, but His disciples did not? Apparently the Pharisees fasted twice weekly. He basically answered that fasting is done in times of grief, not of joy, and while He was with them, they were joyful, but when He went back to heaven, that would be the time for grief and fasting. (Mark 2:18-20) 

And furthermore, Jesus enlightened them: ‘No man also seweth a piece of new (unshrunk) cloth on an old garment: else the new piece that filled it up taketh (pulls) away from the old, and the rent (tear) is made worse. And no man putteth new wine into old bottles (wineskins): else the new wine doth burst the bottles, and the wine is spilled, and the bottle will be marred (ruined): but new wine must be put into new bottles.’ (Mark2:21-22) Oh friends, how can you not be impressed by Jesus eh, no one else uses simple words and ideas like He does! 

And what does all of that mean? Listen to the scholars: ‘2:22. Bottles are wineskins, the old ones figuratively representing Judaism and the new ones Christianity. Old wineskins lose their elasticity and would be burst open by the fermentation of new wine put into them. The point: the old faith of Judaism and the new faith of Christianity cannot be mixed, nor can the practices or traditions (e.g., the time of fasting) of Judaism be forced on Christianity.’ Now that doesn’t mean we have to throw away all that is old, because it’s the old stuff that gives us the true and solid foundations, but if old ways aren’t working, then we do have to try new, but always godly ones. (smile) Much LOVE!

…new brooms sweep clean…but old brooms know the corners…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 December 2015 Luke 2:33‏

Luke 2:33.  And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of him. 

Well mih people, at long last we got a taste of the white stuff. Last evening a blanket of snow finally covered my neighbourhood. This morning around 3 o’clock, before I went to bed, I opened my front door and it was just a pretty picture as you can get of an all white scene, before man defiles it. 

However, a while ago, when I went to put out the garbage, most of it had already melted and instead the rain was falling. So the purists who did not get their white Christmas are also in danger of not getting a white New Year’s either, if these warm and above seasonal temperatures persist. 

The man I pay to clean the snow from my driveway won’t be working today either. He’s still collecting money under false pretenses. But I guess them’s the breaks. (smile) 

And as you can see above, I went to bed late, hence the abnormally late Bit. My intense and sincere apologies, but the ole fella is really a creature of the night, and going to bed early is sometimes difficult. (smile) 

Anyway, it’s a festive Tuesday in the Christmas season, so let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra like we really mean it nuh. All together now: ‘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 is all of that is ever so true my fellow believers in Christ! 

Yes friends, we’re not defined by what we have or do! Our identity is found in being the children of God: His beloved offspring, in whom He is well pleased! We are also Jesus’ close Friend and confidant. That’s who we are! So let’s stop defining ourselves by our material possessions and worldly positions nuh. Nuff said! 

And I’m sure some of you must be wondering how I got on this Mother Mary kick. But there’s no rocket science behind it. It’s just that over the last couple of years, as I delve deeper into the Good Book, I’ve come to LOVE and appreciate Mary. 

So much so, that I’ve come to believe that she is the one who most understood Jesus, also the one who had the truest and strongest faith in the Good Book, after Jesus Himself. We all know the miraculous things she went through at a tender age, but her faith never wavered. In fact I believe it got stronger. 

As the saying goes, she became a mother, while still a child. And yuh better believe my brethren that motherhood is the hardest job in the world, as most mothers would agree, because there are no real instructions on how to do it, especially if you have several children, all with different personalities and needs, as Mary no doubt had. 

And one of the reasons she knew Jesus best, besides the mother and son angle, is that she had the best idea of what His mission was all about, having participated in His miraculous birth and hearing all the magnificent things that were said about Him from his very birth. As we saw yesterday, all those things she kept note of them in her heart and sincerely pondered them. 

My favourite story about Mary and Jesus though is the one at the wedding in the village of Cana in Galilee, where Jesus performed His first miracle; the making of wine from water. I just LOVE the way she handled Him. 

As reported by John, they had run out of wine at the wedding and Mary came and shared that fact with Jesus. ‘Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee (what concern is that of mine)?’ (John 2:4) 

Mary must have chuckled and said to herself: ‘So you think you’re a big man now eh, with your biggish answers? Well just look out for me and you today.’ Then she put her motherly and feminine wiles, her devious plan to work. 

‘His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.’ (John 2:5) Then she flounced off and left Him. Hn, hn!‘ Typical woman and mother eh. 

‘And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after (according to) the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece.’ (John 2:6) 

Now here is some important info from the scholars on that verse. ‘2:6. Waterpots were normally used for washing feet. Firkins were about nine gallons, so each pot held 18 to 27 gallons (total capacity: 108 to 162 gallons).’ 

So friends, these must have been some rather big waterpots. Then ‘Jesus saith unto them (the servants), Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. (That means roughly 162 gallons). And he saith unto them, Draw (some) out now, and bear it unto (take it to) the governor (master) of the feast. And they bare it.’ (John 2:7-8) 

What a bam-bam that caused friends! For when the master of the feast tasted the wine that had been made from the water, and didn’t know where it had come from (though the servants knew), he called the bridegroom and admonished him. 

‘Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse (inferior): but thou hast kept the good wine until now.’ (John 2:10) The poor bridegroom must have been at a loss to know what the master of the feast was talking about. 

But here is some more info from the scholars re that wine. ‘2.9. Much has been written about the wine Jesus created. Oinos is the New Testament word for the fruit of the vine, but it implies nothing concerning fermentation. Whatever Jesus re-creates (water) is better than it was and better than man can make it (fermented wine).’ 

For sure friends! That was probably, no, not probably, but the best wine ever made and drunk in this world! I would have LOVED to taste it! (smile) So you see my people, Mary indeed had more knowledge of Jesus’ capabilities than anyone else. 

And the Good Book afterwards, comments thus on the situation. ‘This beginning of miracles (signs) did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth (revealed) his glory; and his disciples believed on him.’ (John 2:11) 

I guess the disciples had no choice but to believe, after they witnessed such an outstanding event. But deep down inside, because of her natural maternal instincts, plus all the unexpected and unusual things she had experienced during His growing up, His mother Mary knew what He was capable of. 

And we’ll end on that note today. It gives us stuff to keep in our hearts and to ponder on, just like Mary. Much LOVE!

…oftimes…because of the normally close relationship and the natural maternal instinct… a mother has the best knowledge of her child…