Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 July 2020 Zechariah 4:6.

Zechariah 4:6.     ​Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.
 

Well hello there mih lovelies! Greetings and salutations! It’s so good to come to you again in fellowship with LOVE and peace in Christ uppermost in our minds and souls! It means that the Lord has granted us another day to do His work down here on earth, to complete the plan He’s ordained since the beginning of time for our lives. And this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin admirably describes how our heavenly Father works in our lives when we are obedient to His will. It’s simply titled ‘The Task.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘Lord you give me a task So utterly impossible So totally beyond comprehension – The very thought of it Startles me. I want to run hide escape Anything, Lord. Then you electrify me You invade and permeate me You penetrate every fibre of me Until the task is accomplished By Your own magnificent power. Then You praise the performance Your creativity achieved And You reward me beyond expectation – As though I had done it All by myself. My Father.’ 

Now how wonderful is that eh? I’d say, most wonderful! (smile) That’s why I keep telling us about the magnificent and magnanimous God we serve. No other supposed deity would ever do such a thing; give you a tough task, then help you do it, then give you credit for it when it was done strictly under His watchful eye and mighty power! But that’s how the great God; Jehovah, Yahweh, I Am, whatever you choose to call him, operates! And that’s why I also can’t understand why we don’t live in greater obedience to Him, but foolishly prefer to run behind the things of the world. 

And our stupidity just boggles my mind, because He’s most faithfully promised that if we seek first his kingdom and His righteousness that all those worldly things we need…and much more too, will be given to us! Our problem is that we’re proud and greedy and impatient. We want it all, and right now, so we kill ourselves working for it, and sadly end up with no time to truly enjoy the worldly fruits of our labour. Now does that make sense my brethren? Obviously not! 

And even in these dangerous times of pandemic and strife, it’s still the worldly things for which we’re hungering, instead of being peaceful and calm and using this imposed time to come closer to our God, the One who LOVES unconditionally, and so much that He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to earth to die, to be led like a sacrificial lamb to the slaughter, so that our sins could be paid for by His sinless blood. And yet still…we refuse to believe and obey… Ah mih people, I don’t know what else to say nuh to get us to truly embrace our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and to do His works down here on earth as He so greatly desires. 

So let’s turn back to our poem and the Bible verse to which it’s associated. It’s a promise of our God to the prophet Zechariah, re His doing of difficult or seemingly impossible things. In a vision the prophet saw a golden candlestick and two olive trees and did not understand their meaning. The angel of the Lord told Zechariah. ‘This is the word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.’ (Zech. 4:6) Oh friends, what a most wonderful promise! 

And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘4:1-14. The fifth vision, the golden candlestick and the two olive trees: The work of God (the rebuilding of the temple) would be accomplished through God’s leaders, Joshua and Zerubbabel, who would be enabled to perform their tasks by the Spirit of God….’ Ah mih people, that was not the first time that the Lord had used His Spirit to enable His followers to perform His work. How do you think that Nehemiah was able to rustle together the remnants in Jerusalem and rebuild the walls of the city in only fifty two days eh? (Neh. 6:15) It was through the Spirit of the Lord! 

And it’s a promise that the Lord made several times in the Old Testament. Hear Him to the prophet Hosea with his unfaithful wife. ‘But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the Lord their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen.’ (Hos. 1:7) And then to the prophet Joel, our great God proclaimed: ‘And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions. And also upon the (men) servants and the handmaids (maidservants) in those days will I pour out my spirit.’ (Joel 2:28-29)

 Oh what a marvellous promise! And we’ll go back to the scholar’s explanation of Zechariah’s vision. ‘…The vision indicates that future Israel will be a blessing to all the nations of the world through an abundant supply of the Spirit of God as the result of the coming of the Messiah, who will unite the offices of priest and king in Himself.’ 

And yes, that’s exactly what happened when Jesus came, and when He promised the coming of the Comforter. ‘And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever. Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you’ (John 14:16-17) 

And furthermore, Jesus reassured them.. and us: ‘But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.’ (John 14:26) Ah my fellow saints in Christ, how beautiful is our Lord and Saviour eh! And it happened exactly as promised on the day of Pentecost, some fifty days after Jesus ascended to heaven, after telling them to stay in Jerusalem and wait for the promise of the Father. (Acts. 1:4) 

They were all in one place, with the same purpose in mind. ‘And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like of fire, and sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak in tongues, as the spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:2-4) 

Oh mih people, yuh think we God easy nuh! Not at all! He likes to show off His awesome power on behalf of His people, and since that momentous day of Pentecost, His Holy Spirit has dwelt within every believer, leading and guiding, comforting and renewing and helping us to live this earthly life in godly fashion! Wow! What more can we ask for eh? Not much! So let’s go home now declaring (yeahhh!) our Wednesday Wail letting the world know of our awesome position in Christ Jesus! 

All together now, 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!’ 

And we know for sure that if we hold our positions, endure to the end, then that promise will be kept, even more gloriously than we can ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…to sincerely follow Jesus…that’s the ONLY way to live…   

P.S. Yes, it’s somewhat long…but oh so informative and reassuring! (smile) Much LOVE! 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 February 2019 Joel 2:28.

Joel 2:28.   ​And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.
 
And after the snow and the freezing cold, come the rain and the flood! Yeh friends, flood warnings have been issued in these parts for the next couple days due to the quickly melting snow and the rain accompanying it. As they say, when it’s not one thing, it’s another! 

But that’s just life, and we have to roll with the punches, and as believers in Christ we are better prepared to do that than most of the population, so there should be no cause for overly serious concern.

Nonetheless, we’re only human and still liable to fall prey to the deceitful whispers of the enemy, which means we’re somewhat less than up to scratch this wet and rainy Monday morning. (smile) But it’s all good, for we have just the right pick-me-up to solve your problem; that’s our Monday Morning Battle Hymn; antidote of much repute! 

So without further ado, let’s get seriously, but humbly and confidently communicating with the Father. As one body 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!’ 

There you go friends, matter fixed! We’re bright and bubbly now as the Holy Spirit works in us to put a smile on our faces, strength and confidence in our hearts and souls and have us excited to go out now and work for Jesus! Wow! What a transformation can take place when the Spirit of the Lord God Jehovah goes to work in His children! There’s nothing else like it in this whole wide world! 

And that points us to God’s promise of that future event through the prophet Joel: ‘And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.’ 

And then Joel goes on to prophesy about the things that will go on during the Great Tribulation and the establishment of the earthly Davidic millennial kingdom that follows the events of the Great Tribulation. However, we’re only interested here in the pouring out of the Holy Spirit upon all flesh, and we all know that happened on the miraculous Day of Pentecost! 

What a majestic showing that was mih people! Nobody can put on a show like our omnipotent God nuh! Can you imagine sitting down in that room with the disciples, and all of a sudden you hear this sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind which then proceeded to fill the whole house? (Acts 2:2) I know they were all waiting for and anticipating the coming of the Holy Spirit as Jesus promised, but I doubt that they were expecting it to be so such a heart-stopping event. 

And the mighty rushing wind wasn’t all, for as the Good Book tells it: ‘And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:3-4) 

And can you imagine the confusion when these uneducated men from the surrounding area came out and began speaking in the languages of the different Jews who had come to Jerusalem for the big feast? They were all amazed, some even claimed that they were drunk: ‘Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.’ (Acts 2:13) 

But that’s when Peter gave his great speech: ‘ But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said, unto them, Ye men of Judea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words: For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day (9.am). But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;’ (Acts 2:14-16) And then he goes on to specify the words of our Bit and the rest of Joel’s prophecy.  

So you see friends, it’s not wise to write off any of God’s promises, especially if He doesn’t give a definite time frame, for remember His thoughts and ways and times are not like ours, so some of those promises could be earmarked for hundreds of years later, like that of the pouring out of the Holy Spirit upon all believers. 

Now I sincerely hope we have all been encouraged some this Monday morning, and that our faith has also been strengthened by this review of one of God’s great promises! So please hang in there and don’t ever give up, even when things seem like they can’t get any worse, because they can always get better when our hope and trust and faith are safely placed in our Triune God! Much LOVE!

…logic dictates…that when you’re at the bottom…the only place left to go is up…and Jesus can…and will reach down and pull you up… 

P.S. I’m chuckling here as I just realized that I passed the test, and thus have a testimony! Hear it nuh. The ole fella had a rough night, and so was one of those in the not up to scratch group today, (smile) and was really struggling to write the Bit. But I hung in, didn’t give up, and yuh see how Jesus eventually reached down and pulled me up out of the mire and helped me to write something sensible. (smile) Bless His holy name and His faithfulness! That means He can and will do the same for you too. Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 May 2018 2 Corinthians 9:8.

2 Corinthians 9:8.    And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work.

It’s Sunday once again friends, the Lord’s Day, and all roads lead to His sanctuary, to praise, worship, fellowship, hear His word and receive strength and confidence to go out and do His work with diligence and excellence in the upcoming week! 

And that’s partly why the Bit is this late; the ole fella finally darkened the church’s door after about three or four weeks of absence. Hn! I can’t remember being that long away from church for several years now. Anyway, we’re back, and did enjoy the fellowship and the reading of the word. 

And as always, on Sundays we begin by opening our mouths, and lifting up our voices in songs of worship and praise. It helps to soften our hearts for the word that comes later. (smile) And today’s song of praise is simply titled ‘Our God is able.’ And that’s an undeniable fact. So let’s belt it out with sincere hearts and strong voices. 

‘Our God is able. He will never fail. He is Almighty God. Greater than all we seek. Greater than all we ask. (Chorus: He has done great things. Lifted up. He defeated the grave. Raised to life. Our God is able. In His name we overcome. For the Lord, Our God is able.) 

God is with us. God is on our side. He will make a way. Far above all we know. Far above all we hope. (Chorus) God is with us. He will go before us. He will never leave us. He will never leave us. God is for us. He has open arms. He will never fail us. He will never fail us. (Chorus -repeat).’ 

Oh friends, every word we sang there is indeed gospel truth, for our God is indeed able, as Bruh Paul declared to the Corinthians in his second missive to them. ‘And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work.’ What an awesome God we serve and worship my brethren! 

And if you don’t believe, just look at what happened on the Day of Pentecost, which the church is celebrating today. Before Jesus ascended to heaven, He told the disciples to remain in Jerusalem: ‘For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.’ (Acts 1:5)

…But ye shall receive power, after that (when) the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.’ (Acts 1:8) 

Yeh friends, who could make such a remarkable promise and keep it eh? ONLY our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! And we read it every year at Pentecost time, but it still boggles our imagination. 

The Good Book says that on the Day of Pentecost, ‘they were all with one accord (purpose or mind) in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:1-4) 

Wow, mih people! Can you imagine that scene back in ole Jerusalem on that first day of Pentecost? It must have been really wild, since there were oodles of people in Jerusalem at that time, many of them foreign born, and when the disciples emerged from their house and began to speak in several languages, so that those foreign born could understand in their own languages. Mama Yo! It must have been almost cataclysmic! (smile) 

‘Now when this was noised abroad (the sound of the wind occurred) the multitude came together and were confounded (confused), because every man heard them speak in his own language. And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans? 

And how hear we every man in our own tongue (language or dialect) wherein we were born? …And they were all amazed and, and were in doubt (perplexed), saying one to another, What meaneth this?’ (Acts 2:6-8, 12-13) 

Oh fellow believers, ONLY our God is great enough to turn things on their head like that! But as always there are disbelievers and mockers, who said that the men were drunk. But Peter got up and preached his finest sermon that day, informing them that it was the coming to pass of an old promise of our God, from the days of the prophet Joel: 

‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God. I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams… And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ Acts 2:17,21) 

Yeh mih people, the Lord promised many other signs and wonders within that passage, but the most important was the last one; that whosoever should call on His name will be saved. Glory Hallelujah! The most glorious promise in the Good Book! 

And that also marked the beginning of the Holy Spirit coming to dwell within every believer to lead and guide them in the ways of the Lord. So it’s obvious that our God is able my brethren…able to do all that’s necessary to keep us going. Please don’t ever doubt God’s ability, and give Him plenty thanks and praise, for that is wisdom at its highest. Much LOVE!

…if God could speak the world into existence…what other mighty works can’t He do eh…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 May 2018 Ezekiel 11:19.

Ezekiel 11:19.    And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you (them); and I will take the stony heart out of your flesh, and will give them a heart of flesh.

Wow friends, it’s Friday already! A week since I had the surgery, and hopefully I’m on my way to a full recovery. But it’s going to take time.  And isn’t it strange how time seems to go by quickly when you don’t want it to, and slowly when you want it to go by quickly. 

Hn! I guess you’d call that life. But anyway, there’s not much we can do about it, but hope that it comes up in our favour and we have the patience and perseverance to bear how ever long time takes. (smile) 

Anyway, sorry about that break, a friend came to visit and we had a nice long chat. Thanks for the visit Mabel. And regardless of what I might have to say, the workingman is still going to sing his song: 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! Oh people, oh people, the weekend here! Is we time now. No more work…just party and enjoy we selves… and doh care who doh like it. Heh, heh, heh! Enjoy yourself…Enjoy yourself…it’s later than you think…and yuh better believe it! Time not waiting on you. Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Ah friends, as usual, the workingman does have some good points, but he just goes a tad too far out on the limb. We believers are not allowed, or rather supposed to go that far out. We have boundaries that serve to keep the enemy from getting even a toehold in our affairs. That’s why our Friday Chant is so different from the workingman’s song. So with just as much, if not more enthusiasm, let’s chant it now nuh. 

‘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 mih breddren, as faithful followers of Jesus, our lot is to stay within the boundaries that Jesus set. Enjoy ourselves, but don’t get too lustful and licentious. Don’t allow our flesh to control us, but rather let the Spirit of Jesus lead and guide our earthly journey. 

Oh my people, from way back when, the Lord promised that Holy Spirit. Listen to Him through Ezekiel from our Bit.‘And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you (them); and I will take the stony heart out of your flesh, and will give them a heart of flesh.’ 

Why, you wonder? ‘That they may walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances (judgements), and do them: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God.’ (Ezek.11:20) And as always friends, the Lord kept His promise on that first day of Pentecost. 

As the Good Book tells it: On that faithful day, the apostles were all sitting together, ‘And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:3-4) 

What a faithful and awesome God we serve people! One who keeps His promises though we may have to wait on His timing for them. Under the Mosaic covenant, the Holy Spirit would fall upon individual people at certain times, and act in an external manner, but after Jesus ascended back to heaven, the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Holy Trinity, then was sent to dwell in the hearts and souls of each and every believer. 

The Lord took away our hearts of stone and gave us hearts of soft, pliable and malleable flesh, hearts filled with His LOVE and compassion, rather than the enemy’s hate, anger and evil purposes. Glory to our great and wonderful God my brethren! Such an awesome and ever-LOVING Deity who while we were yet sinners, sacrificed His Only Son, Jesus Christ, to pay for our abominable sins, so that we could be made sons, heirs to His kingdom. 

Mama Mia! How could we not LOVE and revere, and adore and exalt Him eh? We’d have to be the most ungrateful and selfish of creatures. And unfortunately there are way too many of us like that. And I’m not going to get into all the works and actions of the Holy Spirit in our lives, we all know them, or should by now. 

I’m just going to end with two pieces of Old Testament scripture that are still very relevant to our modern day lives. The first is a warning from Cousin Sol: ‘He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.’ (Prov.16:32) 

That means, controlling ourselves is of enormous importance, and although the Holy Spirit is there to lead and guide us, we still have to make the decision to listen to the Spirit’s guidance and accede to His wishes. And we’ll end with this beautiful bit of heart-felt scripture from Bruh David, after he acknowledges his sin with Bathsheba. 

‘Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right (steadfast) spirit within me.’ (Ps.51:10) Yeh friends, our magnanimous God will NEVER turn down a sincere, heartfelt plea like that. So when we feel things aren’t right with us, don’t be afraid to call out to Him for help. He’s always available to help us. Much LOVE!

…the worker bee of the Holy Trinity…Holy Spirit…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 September 2017 John 14:16.

John 14:16.   And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.

Arise my brethren, it is the Lord’s Day, and we must be trekking to His sanctuary to engage in blissful fellowship with other believers. What a time it will be, with joyful songs of praise and worship, the reading of God’s word, which enlivens our spirit, and words of encouragement and prayer for and with each other. 

But notwithstanding all of that, these are indeed disastrous times in our world, and we need extra comfort from our faith, thus we’ll open this morning with the old hymn ‘Precious Lord, take my hand’ that fits the bill. The song was written in 1932 by Thomas A Dorsey, a black man from Chicago after his wife Nettie died while giving birth to a child (who also died shortly thereafter). Dorsey sang the song for his friend, Gospel singer Theodore Frye, and Frye’s choir sang it the next Sunday at the Ebeneezer Baptist Church. 

So please friends, and fellow believers, let’s offer up the sacrifice of praise from our lips, as we seek comfort from our comforting God. In rich and soulful harmony now, as we feel it down in our very beings. ‘Precious Lord, take my hand, Lead me on, let me stand, I am tired, I am weak, I am worn; Through the storm, through the night, Lead me on to the light: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) 

When my way grows drear, Precious Lord, linger near, When my life is almost gone, Hear my cry, hear my call, Hold my hand lest I fall: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) When the darkness appears And the night draws near, And the day is past and gone, At the river I stand, Guide my feet, hold my hand: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) 

Precious Lord, take my hand Lead me on, let me stand, I’m tired, I’m weak, I’m alone; Through the storm, through the night Lead me on to the light Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home (lead me home)’ 

Oh my brethren, there is NONE other than Almighty God who can satisfy that need for reassurance and comfort in our hurting souls! That’s why we need to call out to Him first when terrible times overcome us, for He is our indispensable Healer and Comforter. Listen as Jesus offers assurance to His disciples in our Bit. ‘And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.’ 

Oh friends, what a wonderful Lord and Saviour we have! He knew that He had to go away and that the disciples would be left in the lurch without Him around.  So He made arrangements with the Father to send them another Comforter, like Jesus, the Holy Spirit, that would dwell within them forever. And he continues: ‘Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.’ (John 14:17) 

And the scholars tell us: ’14:17. The Spirit…shall be in you: The ministry of the Holy Spirit, promised to believers of this age, is unique, since it is given to all believers alike, and is permanent (dwelleth, that is “takes up residence”). See verse 23.’  

And we all know that the Holy Spirit made that magnificent appearance to all believers on the Day of Pentecost. Jesus had told them to stay in Jerusalem until the new Comforter came, because they would not have had the parts to go out and do what He required of them. The Good Book describes that momentous event thus: ‘And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord (one purpose, mind) in one place. 

And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:1-4) 

Ah mih friends, our God doesn’t too things in half measures! When He decides to put on a show, He puts on a big one, with all the bells and whistles, not a little Mickey-Mouse event! (smile) But Jesus’ most touching words to me, were the ones He spoke after promising to send the Holy Spirit. ‘I will not leave you comfortless (orphans): I will come to you.’ (John 14:18) 

What care and compassion Jesus shows for those distraught men who had given up everything they had to follow Him, thinking that He would be setting up a new kingdom at that time, only to later learn that He would be killed and then He would go away and leave them…but not alone. That’s not Jesus’ style friends. Once you come to Him, He will ALWAYS be with you: ‘for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Heb:13:5) 

Oh my people, in ending, all I can says is that the best place to find comfort and compassion in times of sorrow, is in the ever-open and ever-LOVING arms of Jesus. He has already offered the great invitation: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek (gentle) and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matt.11:28-30)  

Friends, it doesn’t get any better than that. But please remember, YOU have to make a serious decision to go to Him to find succour. It won’t just fall in your lap. Much LOVE!

…on a comfort scale of 1-10…Jesus is 11 plus…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 June 2017 Acts 1:5.

Acts 1:5.   For John truly baptized with water, but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

Welcome friends to Pentecost Sunday; that great day in our faith, fifty days after Jesus rose from the dead, when the Holy Spirit made its miraculous entry into the lives of each and every believer at the time, in Jerusalem, the city of God! 

Wow! What a momentous and memorable day that was my fellow believers! Before His ascension, Jesus told His disciples to wait in Jerusalem so that they could be baptized with the Holy Spirit. ‘For John truly baptized with water, but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.’ And as loyal followers they obeyed His command and stayed in Jerusalem, and were they ever amazed by the happenings on that fateful day. 

Hear how the Good Book puts it nuh. ‘And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord (purpose of mind) in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:1-4) 

Can you imagine that scene on that fateful Sunday friends? It must have been literally and figuratively mind blowing with the sudden appearance of a mighty rushing wind, the cloven tongues of fire and all of a sudden their ability to speak in other languages! Glory to God for His omnipotence and His awesome generosity to His people! 

Now let’s clarify a couple of things. Jesus said in our Bit that the disciples would be ‘baptized’ with the Holy Ghost, but on Pentecost Day the Good Book says they were ‘filled’ with the Holy Ghost. I’ll try to paraphrase a long explanation that the scholars offer. ‘2:4. The filling and baptism are two different works performed by the Holy Spirit. 

Note their contrasts: (1) Following Pentecost every believer receives the baptism of the Spirit (1 Cor.12:13), hence the New Testament never commands the Christian to receive it. But the filling of the Spirit is not experienced by all believers, and so is commanded (Eph.5:18). 

(2) The baptism is permanent, happening but once for all. The filling is ongoing, occurring continuously as seen in the present tense imperative of Ephesians 5:18, that is, “Keep on being filled.” The verse commands: “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess (riotousness), but be filled with the Spirit.” 

Since Paul compares the influences of wine and the filling of the Spirit, the word ‘control’ can aptly express the idea of either. The filling of the Spirit is the controlling influence of the Spirit within the believer. Such control is neither universal nor unending, thus it must be commanded and does recur within the believers… 

The baptism is the act by which Jesus, through the Spirit, at conversion brings the believer into relation with Himself and makes the believer a part of God’s people, the church. The filling is the continuous experience within the Christian whereby the Spirit, who already indwells him, keeps control over his life.’

Phew! Hope you all understand that friends. I guess we can compare it somewhat to God breathing life into us ONE time, but then we have to keep on refilling our lungs with air, if we want to stay alive. 

Yes my brethren, Jesus’ words certainly came true, as just before He ascended to heaven, He told them: ‘But ye shall receive power, after that (when) the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.’ (Acts 1:8) 

And they certainly made mas (smile) in Jerusalem that day, (read the rest of Acts 2) and around the country later on, and we are now spreading the gospel of Jesus to all parts of the world with the aid of technology! Glory Hallelujah! 

Oh friends, I know it’s our custom to begin each Sunday with some praise and worship, but today I was filled with, controlled by the Holy Spirit to do it differently. (smile) I was so enthused by the Spirit’s working in me, that I had to get to the heart of the matter right away. (smile) 

And Oh, our church held a wonderful Pentecost Prayer Breakfast yesterday morning, with plenty good food, music, and fellowship from several other churches and denominations, plus a couple of Muslim leaders. And it was all rounded out by a moving address on ‘Prayer,’ by our new Bishop, Jennifer Anderson. As usual, a fine time was had by all. And I’m sure Jesus was delighted by that little bit of unity shown by His church, instead of the disunity we are so prone to show. 

Now let’s go home singing one of the songs we sang yesterday. And how appropriate it is eh on this Pentecost Day! So let’s raise out voices in song, and pour forth, the peace, joy, and LOVE that fills our Spirit. 

‘I’ve got peace like a river, I’ve got peace like a river, I’ve got peace like a river in my soul, I’ve got peace like a river, I’ve got peace like a river, I’ve got peace like a river in my soul. I’ve got love like an ocean, I’ve got love like an ocean, I’ve got love like an ocean in my soul, I’ve got love like an ocean, I’ve got love like an ocean, I’ve got love like an ocean in my soul. I’ve got joy like a fountain, I’ve got joy like a fountain, I’ve got joy like a fountain in my soul, I’ve got joy like a fountain, I’ve got joy like a fountain, I’ve got joy like a fountain in my soul.’ 

And that’s the way it ought to be my people! So let’s go out now and faithfully spread that peace, LOVE and joy the way Jesus desires of us nuh. Much LOVE!

…when the Spirit moves you…you’re helpless to resist…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 December 2016 Luke 1:42.

Luke 1:42.   And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.

Oh friends, oh friends, the ole fella has two good… no not two good, but two of the most wonderful and exciting bits of news to share! 

First of all I was told that our bubba Scotty was back at church last Sunday…Glory to God! And he was looking good too…Give the Lord even more glory! 

He still is not a hundred percent, but He is much better than he was. So let’s keep on praying that the wonderful healer, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, will soon restore him to full health. Isn’t our God great? He surely is! 

And the second excellent piece of news is that I finally saw Christianity in true action. Wow! 

The story goes like this: A few days ago, a plumber, a tall white guy, possibly in his forties, came to check out a couple of slow running sinks and a blocked toilet in my house. He fixed the sinks without a problem, but could not unblock the toilet. Finally he called a different department and got them to send someone else the following day. 

This guy had to take down the toilet, and after much travail, (smile) finally removed the object that was blocking it. However, to the duchess and I, he did a somewhat shoddy job of putting the toilet back together. So she called and they sent the first plumber back yesterday. 

On viewing what we thought was shoddy workmanship, he declared that the fella had actually done his job, but not as well as he could have. And you could see that in good Christian fashion, he was reluctant to discredit the other plumber. 

Now, from his first visit, we had established that he was a Christian, also a trumpet player, and we had spoken some about our faith, but not to a great extent. And much to our surprise, he then began to work on improving the job. 

Now he didn’t have to do it, and even though he was still on call and getting paid, a lot of others would have just left it and walked away. His manner was also pleasant and friendly and you could feel the Christian feeling exuding from him. 

It was actually LOVE in action, not just talk. And I was really moved by his attitude. I saw the proverbial salt and light in his genuine, happy to serve, down to earth behaviour. And it sort of renewed my confidence in our faith. 

Ah mih people, I don’t know if I described it properly, but a genuine caring for his job, and the way he did it enthusiastically, worked wonders on the duchess and I. Oh how good it would be to see more of that kind of attitude amongst our Christian brethren! 

Anyway, here’s our Bit for today, don’t know if we have space for all I want to say now. (smile) ‘And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.’ 

Now that was Elisabeth, John the Baptist’s mother talking as Mary, her relative, Christ’s mother came to visit her. 

The Good Book describes the scene thus: ‘And Mary arose in those days, and went into the hill country with haste, into a city of Judah; and entered into the house of Zechariah, and saluted (greeted) Elisabeth. 

And it came to pass, that when Elisabeth heard the salutation (greeting) of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost.’ (Luke 1:39-41) 

That’s when she declared our Bit. And isn’t it amusing, amazing, and mysterious, just like our God, to engineer such a meeting. Mary greets Elisabeth, and John the Baptist jumps for joy in his mother’s womb. He is having his first encounter with the mother of His Lord, whom he will be born to proclaim. 

And Elisabeth continues after our Bit. ‘And whence (why) is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy.’ (Luke 1:43-44) 

Yeh mih people, the Holy Ghost obviously filled in Elisabeth with the enormous task that would befall Mary, and she ends with these powerful and most significant words. ‘And blessed is she that (who) believed: for there shall be a performance (fulfillment) of those things which were told her from the Lord.’ (Luke 1:45) 

Elisabeth could only have known those things through the power of the Holy Ghost. What a way our wonderful God, the greatest scriptwriter of all time, tied together the cousins who would bear two of the most important and influential people ever to walk this earth! 

How could we not adore, praise and give Him all the glory He deserves eh! 

Now let’s go home on a further positive and upbeat note by declaring our Thursday Blessings. Remember, a blessing is not a blessing until it’s been proclaimed over someone. 

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

I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! 

I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Yes mih people, blessings and more blessings! Now let’s go out and bless others and be salt and light in the world as Jesus expects us to be. Much LOVE!

…behold…how good and pleasant it is…for brethren to dwell together in unity… (Ps.133:1)

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 December 2015 Luke 2:33

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

Oh my people, this Sunday morning, the first after Christmas Day is the perfect opportunity for us to sing and ponder this song, sung by several artists. It’s titled ‘Mary Did You Know?’ 

Please sing along with me: ‘Mary did you know that your baby boy Will one day walk on water? Mary did you know that your baby boy Will save our sons and daughters? Did you know that your baby boy Has come to make you new? This child that you’ve delivered Will soon deliver you? Mary, did you know that your baby boy Will give sight to a blind man? 

Mary, did you know that your baby boy Will calm a storm with his hand? Did you know that your baby boy Has walked where angels trod? And when you kiss your little baby You’ve kissed the face of God. 

Oh, Mary did you know   Ooh…  The blind will see, the deaf will hear, The dead will live again The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, The praises of the lamb? Mary did you know that your baby boy Is Lord of all creation? Mary did you know that your baby boy Will one day rule the nations? Did you know that your Baby Boy Is Heaven’s perfect Lamb? This sleeping child you’re holding Is the great I am?’ 

Oh Friends, I don’t know how many of those things Mary knew, but I am sure she knew that her baby boy was very special, especially from the manner in which He was conceived! Then there were so many signs and wonders along the way, how could she not know that He would indeed be a mover and a shaker. 

As our Bit so pointedly puts it:  ‘And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of him. 

Now let’s look at some of the signs and wonders. First off is the manner in which she was apprised of the situation by the sudden appearance of the angel telling her that she had found favour with God and would conceive and bring forth a son to be called JESUS, who would be great and called the Son of the Highest (Most High) and the Lord God shall give him the throne of his father David. And the angel went on to explain how it would all come to pass. (Luke 1:27-38) 

Now if that didn’t give her some indication that something important was going to happen, then I don’t know what would have. And by the way, Mary was no simpleton, so her unhesitating agreement, ‘Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done unto me according to thy word,’ was more a matter of faith, rather than a lack of understanding. 

After that Mary went to visit her cousin Elisabeth, who previously considered barren, was then some six months pregnant with John the Baptist. And when she entered Elisabeth’s house and greeted her, John jumped for joy in his mother’s womb. (smile) 

‘And Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: and spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence is this to me (why is it) that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance (fulfillment) of those things which were told her from the Lord.’ (Luke 1:41-45) 

Then Mary declared the awesome words we now call the Magnificat. ‘My soul doth magnify (exalt) the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded the low estate (lowly state) of his handmaiden (maid servant): for behold from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.’ (Luke 1:46-48) You can read the rest of it for yourselves my people. It runs up to verse 56. 

And according to the scholars: ‘1:46-56. This passage is called “the Magnificat,” based on the first word of the Latin translation (the Vulgate). It is rich in Old Testament imagery: Jesus’ coming was in fulfillment of Old Testament promises.’  

So even if Mary wasn’t too sure of the situation, once she heard Elisabeth’s pronouncement and spoke the immortal words of the Magnificat, then spending three months with Elisabeth, she must have been aware that an event of great importance was going to take place in her life. 

I am sure too that Mary was quite relieved when most likely, she very anxiously told Joseph about her situation, because the consequences of adultery or fornication were great in those days, even leading to the stoning of the woman. 

But the Good Book tells us: ‘Then Joseph, her husband, being a just (upright) man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily (secretly). 

But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.’ (Matt.1:19-21)  

Now all of that was done to fulfill Isaiah’s prophecy re the virgin birth of a child called Immanuel, God with us. (Is.7:14, 9:6) 

‘Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife. And knew her not (kept her a virgin) till she brought forth her first-born: and he called his name JESUS.’ (Matt.1:24-25) 

And the scholars explain: ‘1:19-20. Because Joseph was a just man, he decided to put her away (divorce her) privately (“privily”). The Jewish betrothal had to be legally broken. Joseph’s merciful attitude gives an insight into his true nature as a man.’ 

Yes friends, it wasn’t an easy row for either Mary or Joseph to hoe with the Saviour of man placed in their laps, but hoe it they did, with strength, wisdom, faith and obviously the Lord’s help. May we go forward on our own row today doing the same thing, of course with Jesus’ help. 

And we’ll continue Mary’s story tomorrow, God willing. Till then may we rest in the peace, comfort, joy and LOVE of our heavenly Father. Much LOVE!

…it’s Sunday…and still the Christmas season…so please let’s fill the churches with people…giving thanks and praise to God…as we ought to…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 March 2015 1 Corinthians 3:11‏‏‏

1 Corinthians 3:11. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

Well my people, it’s Wednesday, another brand new day on God’s wonderful earth! Wow! And all God’s appreciative children declared a loud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord! Glory Hallelujah!’
 
Yes Friends, we need to be thankful for every new day we see, every breath of life that we breathe, for that means God still has something planned for us to accomplish, else He would have taken us home already.
 
So please don’t be lackadaisical and churlish about greeting each new day, please come to God in prayer and ask Him what are His plans for you on that particular day? Have no fear, if you don’t know, He will certainly inform you of what He desires, and like the wonderful God that He is, will then give you the wherewithal to perform His work successfully.
 
Oh my brethren, I can’t comprehend the magnitude and LOVING-kindness of our God, that’s why I keep reminding us of the wonderful Deity we serve and worship. There’s none other like Him!
 
And how could there ever be eh? No two all-powerful Beings like Him could ever survive in this world together. But fools like Lucifer and his evil minions try to usurp God’s power, unsuccessfully of course!
 
But what is it about power that drives us so crazy eh, that has us doing things that we won’t normally do? And what a lot of us don’t realize is that power for power’s sake is a complete waste of time. And also that with power comes responsibility; the more power, the more responsibility.
 
And that’s where the problems crop up; so often we don’t take seriously enough the responsibility that power brings, that’s why there’s so much corruption and bad decisions in the power bases of our society. Everybody wants power, but apparently just to use it for his or her own selfish purposes and aggrandizement, not for the benefit of the society or world in which they live.
 
But fortunately for us there is one with true power, who uses it selflessly, and for the benefit of all humankind. Yes my fellow believers, we’re talking about our most august Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! He had all power in heaven, but chose to give up that awesome power for a while and come to earth to help poor sinners like you and I get salvation and eternal life.
 
Now why can’t our fellow man do more good works with their earthly power eh, instead of using it for mainly evil and ungodly purposes? I guess that’s just the nature of the human animal. And truly, when most of us get power, especially if we’ve never had much power before, it goes to our head and we just seem to lose the ability for sensible thought and reasoning.
 
Ah Friends, right now the fight for power, for supremacy is proving to be the bane of our existence. Just look at all the people and groups that are jostling, vying and fighting for power in all walks of life. That’s why there are so many wars and rumours of war, so much hate, resentment, anger, selfishness and envy in our world. It’s all about power!
 
And I’m chuckling here Friends, because I don’t know how I ended up writing this treatise on power. (smile) That was never my intention at the beginning. But I guess that’s just where the Lord wanted me to venture.
 
In conclusion, I just want us all to realize the enormous responsibility that comes with power, and if you are a true believer and follower of Jesus Christ, then you are expected to use whatever power you have responsibly, and for the well being of your fellow man, ultimately to lead Him to Jesus, not merely for selfish purposes.
 
End of sermon! Just hope it didn’t or doesn’t fall on deaf ears. (smile)
 
Now here’s our Bit. And I believe today is the last day for it. ‘For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.’ Words of awesome truth my people! And if it were not so, I would have told you. (smile)
 
But there are so many references to it in the Good Book that it has to be true. Let’s check out a couple of them, beginning with Bruh Paul’s message to the church at Rome.
 
When talking about the Jew and the gospel, he declares: ‘What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith. But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness.
 
Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumbling stone. As it is written, Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed (put to shame).’ (Rom.9:30-33)
 
And here’s a word of explanation from the scholars. ‘9:32. They sought it not by faith: Israel mistook the possession of the law as a means of righteousness, when the law was given only to confirm the Fall and to show the need of God’s righteousness (cf. 5:20). Stumbling stone: This is a reference to Messiah (cf. Is.7:14; 1 Pet. 2:8).’
 
Now listen to Peter from Acts, when they were accosted by the chief priests and elders, the day after John and himself healed the blind man in Solomon’s porch at the temple. The Jewish rulers wanted to know by what name or power they had done the healing.
 
‘Then Peter filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, If we this day be examined of (are judged for) the good deed done to the impotent (helpless) man, by what means he is made whole;
 
Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.
 
This is the stone which was set at nought of (rejected by) you builders, which is become the head of the corner (chief cornerstone). Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.’ (Acts 4:8-12)
 
Yes Friends, that’s indisputable truth! There is no other name under heaven by which mankind can be saved from his abominable sins!
 
And as the scholars note: ‘4:12. The name of Jesus Christ is the centre of contention (v. 7,10, 12) and ever will be. Salvation for Jew and Gentile alike is exclusively through the name of Jesus Christ. (John 14:6).’
 
Now let’s remember that as we go about doing Jesus’ work today my people, for it’s wisdom that will stand us in very good stead. Much LOVE!
 
…I am the way…the truth…and the life…no man cometh unto the Father…but by me…  (John 14:6)  
 
P.S. Oh Friends, the Bit’s late because I went to bed late and then had to get up early to do something else, and by the time I was finished, the brain still wasn’t in functioning mode, so I just went back to bed until it was ready to function. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 June 2014 Acts 4:31

Acts 4:31.     And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

Oh Friends, it’s Saturday! Yeh, and you’ll notice that no evil spirits took hold of you yesterday, Friday the 13th. (smile)

That’s because you believe in Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit of Christ is immensely stronger than any evil spirit that exists. Our downfall though is when through ignorance and/or foolish pride, we don’t acknowledge the presence of the Holy Spirit and then follow His lead and guidance.

And yes, we’re going to continue looking at the works of the Holy Spirit after its widespread dispersal on that fateful day of Pentecost. And that’s because my people the Holy Spirit is such an integral part of our Christian lives, and if we don’t understand its use and its immense power we’ll be selling our faith and ourselves short. So please bear with the ole fella as he tries to raise our understanding of the most important element in our lives. (smile)  

Yesterday we saw, where in the face of the multitudes glorifying God, and the lame man healed in their presence through the power of the Holy Spirit, the Jewish rulers had no just cause to punish Peter and John, so they simply threatened them before setting them free.

‘And being let go, they went to their own company (companions), and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them. And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is: who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine (plot) vain things? The kings of the earth stood up (took their stand), and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord and against his Christ.

For of a truth against thy holy child (servant) Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together. For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel (purpose) determined before to be done. And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, by stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by (through) the name of thy holy child (servant) Jesus.’ (Acts 4:23-30)

Oh my brethren, how beautiful and heartwarming it is to our most gracious and wonderful God, when believers unite in praise and prayer! Remember, as Jesus so avidly and faithfully promised: ‘For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.’ (Matt.18:20)

And was He ever amongst that group of believers that day!

Hear the Good Book tell it, through the words of our Bit: ‘And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.’

Oh Friends, what a mighty mover and shaker is the Holy Spirit of Christ! And the scholars remind us: ‘4:31. As with Peter in verse 8, so now the whole body of believers experiences a renewal of the controlling influence or filling of the Spirit. See the note on 2:4.’

That deals with the difference between being baptized with the Holy Spirit, or the first anointing as a new believer, as opposed to the being refilled and refreshed at different stages of our walk of faith. Back in verse 8, Peter was recharged with the Holy Spirit which enabled him to stand up and boldly speak to the Jewish rulers.

And not only were the believers emboldened that day by the Holy Spirit, but their communal living was also vastly enriched. ‘And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that aught (any) of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things in common. And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.

Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices (proceeds) of the things that were sold, and laid them down at the apostles feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need. And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is being interpreted, The son of consolation (encouragement), a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus, Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.’ (Acts 4:32-37)

Oh my people, how good and how pleasant it is when believers dwell together in unity!

And though we know that kind of communal living won’t work properly in our society, there’s no need, no reason why we can’t be a more caring and considerate community of believers. The problem there is that we allow the world and its ungodly ways to come between us. For despite all the talk we talk, we’re still ruled by the things of the world and not by the things of God.

Yuh see how none of those early believers lacked for anything, and everyone was given as they had need? Hn! In our society though, so many lack and have need, while others have excess that they will not share. We’re always looking for a way to increase. And generally that’s not a bad thing…but at what cost? At what cost to others in our community, and at what cost to our relationships with our families and with our God?

That’s the question we need to ponder today my people; how much is our involvement in the ungodly world destroying our godly nature. Remember, we must be IN the world, but not OF it.

So let’s seriously consider our positions, then, with God’s ever-available and always generous help, try and come up better. For that’s eternal wisdom. Much LOVE!

…for though we be Jew or Gentile…of different creed and race…we all fall under the same all-encompassing LOVE of Jesus…

 

 

 

Previous Older Entries