Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 January 2020 1 Peter 3:11.

1 Peter 3:11.    ​Let him eschew (turn away from) evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue (pursue) it.
 
And as the day opens, a whole lot of people around the world emit sighs of relief because it’s that magical day called Friday, when their outside labour will end for a couple of days and they won’t have to face snarled, slow-moving traffic twice a day, and engage in mindless chit-chat with selfish, ignorant co-workers whom they thoroughly dislike! (smile) 

Ah friends, what an evil and deceitful world we live in! And the sad part is that it’s getting worse daily. All the negative stuff that’s currently happening in our world is just creating more tension, anxiety and strife between hitherto comfortable people. But all that us true believers in Christ can basically do is pray for world peace and then do our best to pursue it in our families, friends and neighbourhoods! 

And since it’s Friday, we ought to hear what the ordinary workingman has to say for himself. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes! And am I ever grateful for the two days off! I forgot how hard work could really be. Yeh, now that the new year has truly gotten rolling, the work is pouring in and the slave driving task master we have is flashing the whip often because the more work we do means more money for him. And yes, we do get a little more too, but nothing like what he gets, and certainly not in proper proportion to the amount of work we do to create the extra money… 

But I guess them’s the breaks! It’s how the greedy massa and them build the society – the people who do all the back breaking work, get the smallest amount of the harvest. And to tell the truth, in all the different systems we have in the world, one thing stands out…the handful of people who run the show, always get the best part of the pie! Regardless of how much revolution yuh have, it always end up like that. And right now, I too old to fight it anymore, so I’ll just put mih gear in cruise, and just bide mih time till I retire, and until then keep saying, ‘Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Now that’s the unfortunate reaction of a great number of people in our down-pressed world today, and sometimes you can’t give them wrong because they do seem to be fighting a losing battle. However, as true believers in Christ Jesus we don’t have to accept that defeatist philosophy, because in Christ there’s NO giving up. In fact, He has already won the victory and all we now have to do is walk it through in diligent faith and preordained works. That’s why our Friday Chant is so different from the workingman’s song. 

So let’s chant it now nuh, in strong voice and sincere hearts, so that we can be encouraged this Friday morning. ‘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!’ 

You see my faithful brethren, whatever it looks like, and however life turns out, we believers need to keep on keeping on, fixated on the promises and sacrificial work of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, always looking forward to His wonderful  coming in glory, sometime soon, any day now! In the meantime though, one thing we should all be seeking is that very real, but very elusive thing called peace, because it is a very important part of Christ’s kingdom. 

Now let’s look at some of the many scriptures in the Good Book that call for the making of peace. The first one is the prophecy of John the Baptist’s father, Zechariah re John’s work. ‘To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.’ (Luke 1:79) And if a big part of John’s work was to guide us in the way of peace, and John was the forerunner of Christ, then it means that peace was also a big part of Christ’s ministry. 

And He made that clear often enough. One of the Beatitudes, those 8 states of mind and heart  that Christ said was absolutely necessary for Christian discipleship in the Sermon on the Mount is: ‘Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.’ (Matt.5:9) Yes friends, blessed are those who seek peace and make peace and are at peace with God and man. And Peter makes it quite clear that if we want to have a good, long life: ‘Let him eschew (turn away from) evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue (pursue) it.’ Yuh see people, we have to make a definite decision and action; pursue peace. It doesn’t just come by desiring it, we have to make it happen! 

And I’m chuckling and a tad confused because I have so many scriptures on peace I don’t know which to share because of our time and space constraints. (smile) But since we can’t ever go wrong with Jesus, listen to Him again. ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ (John 14:27) Yuh see that, Jesus’ peace is an entirely different kind of peace to what we find in the world. His is the kind that surpasses man’s understanding! (Phil. 4:7) And if we’re smart, we’ll diligently seek for His kind and not the world’s. 

And Hebrews so wisely tells us: ‘Follow (pursue) peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.’ (Heb.12:14) Then James proudly proclaims: ‘And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.’ (James 3:18) Yeh friends, peace is one of the fruits of the Spirit, and you can’t get it unless you sow it. And what better way to end than with one of Jesus’ better known sayings on peace. ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

Oh friends with those encouraging words ringing in our hearts and minds, let’s go out today and in our own li’l way pursue peace nuh, because that’s the only way our world will ever improve! Much LOVE!

…as much as possible…follow peace with all men…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 January 2020 Matthew 18:20.

Matthew 18:20.    ​For where two or three are gathered together in my name; there am I in the midst of them.
 
Can you believe it friends, we’re already into the third day of this new year of 2020! The days surely are running fast. As the duchess tells me when I complain about how the day ends so quickly: ‘Sit down there and think the day waiting on you nuh!’ It certainly isn’t my people, that’s why we got to get up and make hay while the sun shines, and not put off for tomorrow what we can do today. Another of the duchess’ sayings to me when I tend to procrastinate. (smile) But thankfully it’s Friday, and a lot of us are giving thanks for that fact because we’re still tired and bombed out from the hectic Christmas and New Year’s Eve activities. 

And I guess the workingman is too, so let’s hear what he has to say. ‘Oh mercy me! TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes! I haven’t looked forward to a Friday like this one in a long time. Brother am I ever tired! Having not worked for the Christmas week, and then partied so much for the New Year’s, I was definitely out of sync and not up to snuff these last couple days in doing the slave master’s work. Steups! I should really have taken the two weeks off. Next year I’ll know better. 

But it was a good Christmas and New Year’s. The family got closer together as we did stuff that we hadn’t done in ages, and I promised mihself to keep on doing that, not kill mihself out in the slave driver work, like I did last year. Ah getting older, ah not a spring chicken any more, so the work getting harder, because it entail plenty physical labour. And the wife needs some help with the children too, she not getting any younger either. So hopefully this will be a year when everything comes together, falls into place for us. Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Yes friends, I guess all of us are hoping that for 2020 we’ll turn over a new leaf in our lives, round a serious corner and discover the good life. (smile) And it’s always possible once you have Jesus as the Guiding Light of our lives. But please remember, it’s not going to be easy. It wasn’t easy for Jesus, and won’t be for His followers. But it surely will be interesting, adventurous and worthwhile, because that’s the kind of Leader we have. Now the workingman had some good sentiments in his song, but our weekend song is somewhat different, with checks and balances, as required by our Lord and Saviour to prevent the enemy from getting a foothold in our lives. 

So let’s give out with our Friday Chant nuh, in strong voice with a sincere sense of purpose. All together 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!’ 

Oh my people, is it ever important for us to get our souls, bodies, minds and spirits renewed and refreshed every week, so that we can do Jesus’ work at a high standard, with the diligence and excellence He expects of us. That’s why gathering to fellowship with other believers, on a Sunday, or whenever, is a must! We were made for fellowship, not to be independents or loners. Remember the saying, no man is an island. We can’t do it all on our lonesome. In fellowship there is great joy and togetherness, such that cannot be found on our own. 

Why yuh think Jesus said: ‘For where two or three are gathered together in my name; there am I in the midst of them.’ Because He knew the great benefits that accrued from fellowship. Not that He isn’t with us when we’re alone, but the Father made us specifically to dwell together in harmony, and when we forget our foolish pride and do just that, then all heaven cries out with delight and joy. Yuh think heaven’s happy now with the way we supposed believers living – divided by petty squabbles, full of resentment, bitterness, hatred and anger towards each other? 

Not on your life! Jesus came to break down the barriers that existed between Jews and Gentiles, and form ONE unified church! But we, in our worldly wisdom, have made a mockery of Jesus’ plan, for there’s no other organization or institution that’s as divided as the church in these turbulent end times! It’s ever so sad that when we need to come together the most, we’re drifting even further apart by the enemy’s successful drive to divide and conquer us. Oh my fellow believers, can’t we see that we’re only harming ourselves by all the foolishness that’s happening in Christ’s church? 

We’re only giving Satan a bigger and stronger foothold in our lives and demeaning the sacrifice and work of Christ! Do we need the many denominations and sects, numbered in the thousands, that are supposedly a part of the unified church? Definitely not! Especially when all are preaching something different. And Bruh Paul saw it coming when he warned Timothy about the apostasy (renunciation and doubt of formerly held beliefs) that would eventually appear. 

‘This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous (money lovers), boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers (irreconcilable), false accusers (slanderers), incontinent (without self-control), fierce (brutal), despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady (reckless), high-minded (haughty), lovers of pleasures more than (rather than) lovers of God: Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.’ (2 Tim. 3:1-5) 

Oh my people, we’ve always had some of this in our world, but right now it’s the worse it’s ever been! The false teachers and preachers, the antichrist, as John calls them, are holding too much sway. Too many are preaching that form of godliness; ‘mere religion without power or spiritual life.’ From those we must stay away. But we can only do that successfully when we know the Word. 

That means, this year, more than ever, we need to delve into God’s Word with a vengeance, so that we can know the false teachers and preachers, the antichrist, and stay away from them. Our world is depending on us friends, so let’s put some serious effort into raising our spiritual level, our faith, so that we can be strong, vibrant witnesses for Christ, and thus turn back the enemy. Much LOVE!

…the Word will set you free…but you can’t be free…until you know the Word…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 November 2019 Proverbs 1:7.

Proverbs 1:7.    The fear (reverential awe) of the Lord is the (principal) beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
 

Well thank the Lord for eyes that opened again this Friday morning unto another new day in God’s great universe! Although I don’t think that many of us found the time to do it for real, since we were, and are still too occupied with the man-made commercial day called Black Friday! Ah Lord eh, another day to spend our money, or rather get into debt foolishly for things we don’t need, another snare of supposed sales to get you into the stores and spend what you don’t have. And it’s become so big over the last few years that even in Canada now it’s taken over, ostensibly to stop the northerners from going south to spend their hard earned cash and credit. 

And sadly, it just shows up man’s wild beast behaviour, as we rush and push and fight, and even kill to be the first into the stores, for the storekeepers are smart enough to only advertise a few items at a true sale price, so that mayhem can erupt at their doors. I don’t know how many Thanksgiving Day parties ended early so the participants could go and line up early for Black Friday Door Crashers! 

But let’s hear what the ordinary workingman has to say about all of that nuh: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday again oui! That means the weekend is here, and there’s no more work! And please doh tell me no nonsense about Black Friday eh! I work hard enough for my money, ah not going to go and throw it away now and buy stuff I don’t really need. And on top of that, to get out early and rush and push to get the few items on sale. 

No way Jose! Too much violence does go on in that Black Friday business nowadays yes! It just have we behaving like wild animals…even worse than wild animals, the way we fight each other to get in the stores and them. Steups! Let them do their do yes! I not going nowhere no stores today! I’m just going home after work, as usual, and just enjoy mih weekend, making my preparations for the real big and worthwhile celebration…Christmas! Would you believe Christmas just round the corner! Mamacita! Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui people!’ 

And who says the workingman isn’t wise in his own simple way eh? There’s nothing that says you need a lot of education to be wise. In fact, in these foolish and tremulous times, more education seems to equal less wisdom. But thankfully there’s a group that specializes in wisdom, (smile) true believers in Christ Jesus. Although I’m sure many supposed believers are involved in the Black Friday crush. (smile) Nonetheless, let’s chant our Friday Chant so that we can show the world that we’re somewhat different. 

As one strong and sincere voice 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!’ 

Yeh friends, that’s wisdom personified! If you are sincerely and diligently trying to do the will of Almighty God, then you are certainly numbered among the wise by those in heaven, though not necessarily by those on earth. But heaven is where it truly matters, since this earth will eventually pass away, but heaven, God’s Word and His Will, will not. That’s why Cousin Sol in his Book of Proverbs specified these awesome words of wisdom right at the very beginning: ‘The fear (reverential awe) of the Lord is the (principal) beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.’ 

Oh my people, that is indeed gospel truth! If you believe that the Lord made the universe and all therein it, then to know what the universe is all about, you must first know what’s Creator is all about. I think that’s simple logic. But hear how the scholars explain that verse. ‘1:7. The fear of the Lord means submission to the Lord and His revelation. When one is afraid of something, he either runs from it or submits to it. The latter idea is in view here. It is a healthy fear, like the fear of electricity or the fear of one’s parents, which causes one to act in an appropriate manner. The beginning does not mean that “the fear of the Lord” is left behind in the course of acquiring wisdom, but that it is the controlling principle of wisdom.’ 

Oh friends, how I wish that a much larger portion of this fractious world’s population truly feared, showed a reverential awe of the Lord! Then most of the nonsense that’s now happening would not even exist. And Job said it thus in his discourse on the subject. ‘But where shall wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding? Man knoweth not the price (value) thereof; neither is it found in the land of the living.’ (Job 28:12-13) 

Then after evaluating the pros and cons of the matter (vs. 14-25) Job finally saw the light and announced: ‘When he (God) made a decree (set a limit) for the rain, and a way for the lightning of the thunder (thunderbolt); Then did he see it (wisdom), and declare it; he prepared it, yea, and searched it out. And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.’ (Job 28:28) How much clearer can it get eh people? Not a whole lot! 

Now hear the psalmist: ‘He sent redemption unto his people: he hath commanded his covenant for ever: holy and reverend is his name. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.’ (Ps.111:9-10) 

There’s nothing left for me to say nuh friends, since great men of God have already declared the truth of the matter. All I can do now is to implore us to diligently seek the Lord, seek His face, seek His amazing wisdom though a sincere and reverential awe, so that wisdom can be ours, this day…and forever more! Much LOVE!

…you can’t know the created…until you know the Creator…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 November 2019 Matthew 5:19.

Matthew 5:19.    ​Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:
 

‘Sunshine makes me feel so happy…Sunshine makes me feel so sad…’ Yeh friends, sunshine has the ability to do both those things. When we see it in the early morning hours, it lifts our spirits, but when it gets too hot, or too cold, as it is now in my neck of the woods, it deflates the spirit somewhat. But let’s be thankful for small mercies nuh, be thankful that there’s a bright sun shining in God’s beautiful sky, instead of any negative precipitation like the rain we’ve been recently having, or the snow that’s in our immediate future. And the ordinary workingman reminds us of just that in his weekend song. 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday, and the weekend is upon us! Boy, is that ever the best time of the week! And the sun’s shining to boot…and no snow not falling…not yet anyway. Wow! As Brother James Brown would say: ‘Get on the good foot baby!’ Yes, I’m certainly going to do that, come rain, snow or shine, cause life’s too short to allow the vagaries of the weather to control it. And who doesn’t want to do that, that’s their business, their loss. They don’t know what a good time they passing up nuh. To some of us, it’s okay to work all week, then don’t enjoy the weekend. Well not me nuh! I’m starting right now to enjoy it oui! Come hell or highwater, my weekend going to be a blast! Yes sir! Thank God for Fridays and weekends!’ 

And so should we all, my precious people of God! Because it’s only through His grace and mercy that we can enjoy the fruits of our labour in fairly peaceful surroundings. Unfortunately, a great proportion of humanity are unable to do that, due to strife and wars and other public upheavals. So let’s give some sincere and heartfelt thanks as we declare our weekend song, our Friday Chant.

All together 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.’ 

And as I like to remind us each week, Christianity is an action oriented, outgoing association, but not one that just runs hither, thither and yon without a sensible sense of purpose. (smile) That is to say, our Leader, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ has instituted borders and boundaries that we should not cross over since they would just allow the ever-lurking enemy to get a foothold in our lives, something we need to avoid at all cost. So, unlike the ordinary workingman, we don’t rush out and do whatever we want, or whatever feels good, we need to examine our actions in the context of Christ’s boundaries before we do stuff. 

Now sometimes that’s difficult, or it seems to detract from what we’d naturally consider a joyful time. But friends, it’s better to be safe than sorry, for once we get into certain activities or circumstances, they will certainly come back to haunt us, possibly for the rest of our lives. Please, please, let’s remember that all that glitters is not gold, especially in the enemy’s camp. His stuff is not even gold plated, just covered with a thin veneer of gold paint, and gets rusty real quickly! (smile) That’s why Jesus went to such great length to warn us in His Sermon on the Mount: ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:’ What life changing, world beating advice my brethren! 

And it’s not like we don’t know, or have not experienced the theft and/or fraudulent gain of our earthly treasure by others, yet we continue to kill ourselves in order to accumulate earthly wealth and possessions that can be so easily violated. And Jesus doesn’t leave us hanging, He shows us where to store our treasure. ‘But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through and steal.’ (Matt. 6:20) That’s ageless wisdom people! If you have treasure, the best place to store it is where it’s the safest from thieves and rust…and that’s heaven. 

And furthermore, Jesus reminds us: ‘For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt.6:21) Gospel truth friends! Just think about your earthly valuables right now, wherever you have them stored, your mind is always on them wondering if they are safe; in the bank, or under your mattress, or if they are making you more money, increasing in value, in places like the stock exchange. And in these oh so turbulent times, we’re thinking about our earthly treasure more than ever, since matters totally out of our control can cause us to lose it all. 

Listen to the scholars: ‘6:19-21. The attention of the believer is directed toward treasures in heaven. The term treasures implies the addition or accumulation of things. The two kinds of treasures are conditioned by their place (on earth, or in heaven). The concept of laying up treasures in heaven is not pictured as one of meritorious benefits but rather as rewards for faithful service, as is illustrated elsewhere in the teaching of Jesus.’ Oh friends all the wealth in the world won’t get us into heaven. That doesn’t mean it’s wrong to have earthly wealth, but it’s how we use it. 

Hear Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘Charge (command) them that are rich in this world (present age), that they be not highminded (haughty), nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute (give), willing to communicate (share); Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.’ (1 Tim. 17-19) Yeh friends, once we believe in Christ, we must use our earthly treasures to help others, to further God’s kingdom, thus we will store up rewards, treasures in heaven…and you can’t beat heavenly treasures! Much LOVE!

…labour not to be rich…do not overwork…cease from thine own wisdom… (Prov.23:4)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 October 2019 Proverbs 16:32.

Proverbs 16:32.   ​He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.

 

Yeah, it’s Friday! And though the sun is struggling to get out from under the cloud cover, there is joy in the land, simply because it’s Friday and the workweek is ending! Thus, there are many ‘Praise the Lord’s!’ both sincere and insincere, (smile) ringing out from all parts of the world. And there’s none louder than that of the ordinary workingman, who never shies away from expressing his true feelings. 

And today, he shouts: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! What a week it’s been! I ate and drank and partied so much this past Thanksgiving weekend, that I was truly sick come Tuesday and couldn’t go to the slave master’s work. Obviously he tried to give me a hard time when I showed up on Wednesday, but I just ignored him, because I have my sick time rights and this one was certainly legitimate. He feels that nobody should ever book off sick, because he loses money when they do. 

But when he books off sick is okay though, because he’s the boss… Chuh! Just forget the li’l greedy man yes! And yuh better believe this weekend is going to be strictly rest! I like mih food and drinks, but not to the extent that I want them to get me sick. I surely hope I learn mih lesson this time yes. Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Ah friends, yuh see what happen when we overdo it? Unwanted consequences usually come back to haunt us. As Uncle Charles (Dr. Charles Stanley) likes to say: ‘You reap what you sow; more than you sow, and later than you sow.’ And that’s the gospel truth! It holds in all situations in life! So let’s turn now to our Friday Chant nuh, which isn’t as verbose and in your face as the workingman’s song, but does do the trick for us believers. 

All together in true sincerity 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!’ 

Yes, we do need to be careful how we operate, because the enemy, like the roaring, toothless lion that he is, is always lurking around seeking ways to get into our lives and create havoc. And I have a very good testimony on that point to share. This morning as I was getting ready to write the Bit, my trusty desktop computer began playing the fool. It just would not access the Internet after booting up. 

And as the Lord would have it, I opened the Good Book and began flipping pages and just happened to stop in Proverbs 16…no I don’t think that just happened nuh, because the Word that I read plainly said: ‘He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.’  

That was certainly more than mere coincidence, because every time I turned my computer off and on, and got no progress, I could feel the anger rising up in me and I wanted to give it a few good thumps. But with that scripture staring me straight in the face, and knowing that the Lord, or the enemy was testing my resolve, I managed to not thump it, and it did behave properly after the fifth or sixth time of turning it on and off. 

I believe the Lord saved me though, because I’m pretty sure that I would have thumped it if I had had to go through the annoying rigmarole one more time. (smile) So I passed the test…but just barely. And that’s the way this earthly life is my faithful brethren. Life just likes to test us, to muddy our waters and see how we react. 

Sometimes it’s the Lord, other times it’s the enemy. But whoever or whatever causes us to find ourselves between a rock and hard place, we need to be able to bring up scripture written indelibly in our souls, bodies and minds, to help us handle them in a godly and sensible manner. And today we just going to check out a few of those scriptures that we need to have as our bedrock, our fortification against unnecessary anger. 

Hear Cousin Sol earlier on: ‘He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding: but he that is hasty of spirit (impulsive) exalteth folly.’ (Prov.14:29) And that’s certainly no lie, as many of us have found out over the years. And just recently we featured these immortal verses from Bruh Paul to the Ephesians. 

‘Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.’ (Eph.4:31-32) Words of eternal wisdom my brethren! 

Meanwhile James adds his two-cents worth thus: ‘Wherefore my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not (does not produce) the righteousness of God.’ (James 1:19-20) And if you’re a true believer, you ought to know that. But listen to the scholars’ explanation anyway. 

‘1:19. This is a key verse because it expresses three topics that James develops later: hearing, verses 19-27; speaking, 3:1-12; and wrath, 4:1-12.’ ‘1:20. Trials require silence and patience because talk inflames anger, and anger inflames talk. Anger also distracts from listening to God.’ I hope we all hear that friends: anger distracts us from listening to God, and when we don’t listen to God, we go astray and end up suffering severe consequences. 

And here are some final words on the subject from Cousin Sol once again. ‘The discretion of a man deferreth his anger (makes him slow to anger); and it is his glory to pass over (overlook) a transgression.’ (Prov.19:11) Awright mih people, there’s the ammunition to fight the battle against anger, let’s go out and put it to good use now nuh! It’s Jesus’ desire for all His followers. Much LOVE!

…be ye angry…and sin not…let not the sun…go down upon your wrath… (Eph.4:26)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 September 2019 1 Peter 5:10.

1 Peter 5:10.    ​But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye had suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you.
 

Welcome to Friday my people; the day we all LOVE to LOVE!  Don’t know if I’m LOVING it all that much nuh, because I’m tired like a dog from all that whirlwind world traveller travelling. (smile) I guess jet lag has finally set in, but I do have to go out the street and do some blood work for a visit to the medic next week. I do hope that it will show that my PSA – prostate cancer level is ZERO, because I really don’t want to go back and do anymore radiation treatments nuh. It’s not hard or painful, but it certainly is inconvenient and disruptive to one’s schedule, and the side effects can be rather invasive and annoying. 

Enough on my problem though, and since it’s Friday, let’s hear what the ordinary workingman has to say. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! My time to shout and party. But brother, are we having some good summer weather this far into September! Oh don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining, I LOVE it! And I think I’m going to bring out the barbecue every day that it stays hot, give the wife a break from the kitchen and indulge the children somewhat with dogs and burgers. And I’m not forgetting myself or any friends that might come over; we will indeed be having our brews out there on the deck to cool us down in this summer weather. What else can a man ask for eh? Not a whole lot. When friends and family get together it is the best! As they say, the family that plays together, stays together! Thank God for Fridays and weekend yes!’ 

Ah mih breddren those are certainly words of wisdom from the ordinary workingman! The family that plays together, does stay together! And that’s what’s lacking a lot in this modern day and age; families no longer seem to be the important part of our social setup. And what a pity that is because when families behave like families ought, our whole society benefits. But with the plenty infighting that is currently going on in modern families, it’s just helping to drive us further apart and reduce the already small amount of familial LOVE that we now have. 

And sadly this lack of familial LOVE isn’t only happening amongst unbelievers, but also amongst believers. That surely is sad, for if believers can’t live in unity with their families, how can we live in unity with others eh…and that’s something to which we are seriously called to do by our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! No wonder there’s such little unity and so much division amongst His church. But it’s Friday, and the weekend is upon us, so let’s chant our Friday Chant, though not as colourful as the workingman’s song, but nonetheless it meets our needs as believers admirably. 

So, in strong voice, with sincere hearts, let’s chant! ‘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 my people, for our sake, it does keep us on out toes. However that doesn’t mean to say that we can’t have fun and good times, but just a li’l more cautiously than the ordinary workingman, who tends to let his hair down without any concern for the possible consequences. 

But we believers need to be aware of the enemy and his great desire to get a foothold, or even a toehold into our souls and thus mess up and cause confusion in our lives. That’s his admitted purpose, and he goes after it with zeal, therefore we also have to be careful not to give him even one li’l opening, because he’s quick to jump into any space we allow him. That’s why, as Peter says, we have to: ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:’ (1 Pet.5:8) 

And that’s the gospel truth my brethren, ole Satan just roams the earth, hungry and angry, looking for those whom he can lead into temptation. But please remember he’s a toothless, defanged lion, made so by the death, resurrection and ascension of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and he has no real power over us unless we allow him to. But as the ole people would say, he has a sweet mouth, could talk nice and be very deceiving; yuh see how he deceived Eve long ago, and still deceiving us today? And Peter again gives us some advice re dealing with the prince of darkness: ‘Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world.’ (1 Pet.5:9) 

Ah mih people, we’re not alone in our temptations, for the evil one tempts all believers, as it’s his most precious and desired goal to turn believers away from God to his evil way of thinking and life. But we all need to use our faith to steadfastly resist him. That’s the only way we can be successful against the tyranny of darkness. It’s not always easy as some of his temptations are strong and seem very desirable, but before we fall for them, we must always consider the consequences, unlike what Adam and Eve did. That’s because there are always consequences for falling into sin, into temptation, and we can pay a very hefty price, sometimes for our entire life by making one sinful mistake. 

But please know this, our great God won’t allow us to suffer temptation on our own. As Peter says: ‘But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye had suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you.’ Yes friends, the Lord will on occasion allow us to go through some rough times, to test us and build our faith, because it’s only in rough times that faith is built and /or strengthened, but be assured that He will eventually make a way for us to handle the temptation. Therefore: ‘To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet.5:11) 

Oh, my fellow believers, do we ever need to praise and exalt His holy name for being so kind and generous to the undeserving children of men! Much LOVE!

…the consequences of sin…is death…but belief in Christ Jesus…brings everlasting life…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 September 2019 Proverbs 1:33.

Proverbs 1:33.    ​But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet (safe, secure) from fear of evil.
 

Well a good Friday morning to you my Scrip-Bit friends and family! And so it should be, because it’s as glorious a day as the Lord has ever made! This morning when He took out His brush, palette and paints to produce it, He didn’t miss a stroke! 

He got it all right; the brightly shining sun, a cool, invigorating breeze, leaves as green as ever on the trees, singing birds and insects, a myriad of flowers in a myriad of beautiful colours, and most of all, we His faithful followers and obedient believers with His Holy Spirit dwelling in us to lead and guide us along straight paths! 

Oh glory to our great God! Give Him much thanks and praise my people! And that thanks should not be only through word of mouth, but also be shown by our actions, by the way we live our lives, so that others will want to come to Him and enjoy His salvation, LOVE, forgiveness and mercy! But enough of me. (smile) 

Hear the ordinary workingman as he sings his Friday song. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! Brother! The week’s been somewhat rough after all that Labour Day partying! Good thing we didn’t have to work five days nuh, else I never would have made it nuh. And with the children bouncing around excitedly with the new school year, there wasn’t a moment’s peace in the house this week! 

But I guess now that the summer’s done, I have the whole winter to rest. Let’s hope it’s not a rough one nuh because I’m not as young as I was and thus can’t handle those harsh winters with as much enthusiasm and patience and physical strength as I used to. Might just be time to move to somewhere where it’s always summer! 

Oh, I know right now that’s just a pipe dream, but it’s surely something to think on for later days. For the time being though, I just have to put up with the slave master and his slavish work, so that I can support the family, and enjoy the two short days off on the weekends. Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Yes friends, even the ordinary workingman has to wake up some time to his mortality! We all need to realize that what we might have been able to do in our youth, we simply can’t do in our later years. However, with the help of our amazing God and Creator we can do infinitely more than we think or imagine. And we bring that to remembrance through our Friday Chant. 

So let’s chant up a sincere storm 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!’ 

Yeh friends, like the ordinary workingman, many of us believers extended ourselves over the Labour Day weekend, and had it somewhat rough this past week, but we know the Lord our God, know that we can go to Him for rest and recuperation at any time of the day or night, because He has promised it in His Word. 

Hear how Cousin Sol puts it nuh, when he talks about those who refuse to seek the wisdom of the Lord God Almighty. ‘For the turning away (waywardness) of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity (complacency) of fools shall destroy them.’ (Prov.1:32) And oh my people, if there’s one word that describes too many believers in this day and age it’s that utterly inappropriate word ‘complacency!’ 

Now technically that means something like a ‘feeling of smug or uncritical satisfaction with oneself or one’s achievements.’ However as it pertains to us Christians in this evil and ungodly world it’s more a case of not doing what we ought to do; that’s the work, the purpose, the plan Jesus has for us, the job of spreading His good news to those around us. It’s more like ‘self-satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies.’ 

Yes friends, too many of us are just sitting on our laurels doing nothing to truly further God’s kingdom, just enjoying the good earthly life, totally unaware of the dangers and deficiencies of our behaviour! Merely sitting on the fence, waiting for life to produce whatever we hope it produces is totally unacceptable to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and eventually we’ll only drown in, or choke on our own vomit, as the saying goes. 

Cousin Sol though wisely informs us: ‘But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet (safe, secure) from fear of evil.’ What a wonderful promise my people, but it comes with conditions! We need to listen to the Lord, obey His Word, and do what he tells us to do, when He tells us to do it; not just sit around lazily, complacently, and call ourselves Christians. Christians are action-oriented people, not just lay-abouts! 

And Cousin Sol expands on all of that later, saying when we seek the wisdom of God and also obey it: ‘Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble. When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet. Be not afraid of sudden fear (terror), neither of the desolation of (trouble from) the wicked, when it cometh. For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken (caught).’ (Prov.3:23-26) 

Oh friends, I couldn’t put it any better or clearer! It’s up to us now to accept God’s promises or not. But please remember there are serious consequences to each option, so please be wise and choose the Lord and His way! Much LOVE!

…I have set before you…life and death…blessing and cursing…therefore choose life…that both thou and thy seed may live… (Deut.30:19)

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