Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 August 2017 John 14:6.

John 14:6.   Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.

Ah mih people, it’s the Sabbath Day; the day for gathering and fellowship in the Lord’s sanctuary, where His ardent followers praise and worship His holy name! It involves hearing His wonderful word which brings peace, strength and assurance to our tired and fragile souls, while filling His house with glorious song! Oh what a pleasure, a gift of grace it is to be able to worship Almighty God in freedom, with a strong sense of purpose. 

However, many believers around the world have to do it in hiding, afraid of serious persecution, but standing strong on His faithful promises, they do it nonetheless. And as we offer up the sacrifice of praise with our lips this Sunday morning, I want us to think about all those who are not free to worship as we are, and pray that the Lord will give them that freedom someday soon, or at least keep them safe from further persecution.

Now let’s raise the roof with loud and harmonious voices, as we sing that blessed hymn ‘Turn your eyes upon Jesus.’  

‘O soul, are you weary and troubled? No light in the darkness you see? There’s light for a look at the Savior, And life more abundant and free. (Refrain: Turn your eyes upon Jesus, Look full in His wonderful face, And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, In the light of His glory and grace.) 

Through death into life everlasting He passed, and we follow Him there; O’er us sin no more hath dominion For more than conqu’rors we are! (Refrain: Turn your eyes upon Jesus…) His Word shall not fail you, He promised; Believe Him and all will be well; Then go to a world that is dying, His perfect salvation to tell! (Refrain: Turn your eyes upon Jesus, Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of the earth will grow strangely dim, In the light of His glory and grace.)’ 

Oh friends, what words of perfect assurance! If your soul is weary and troubled, and floundering in perpetual darkness, then Jesus is the One to turn to for relief. He died that we might live, might have eternal life, so there is NO ONE better to offer us comfort and safety and light in this tragic world. As the song says: Turn your eyes on Him, look Him straight in the face, and all of a sudden the worries and problems of this world will begin to recede. 

What a tower of strength we have in Jesus, our Lord and Saviour, our Prince of Peace, our High Priest, our heavenly Intercessor, our unmatched Messiah! He is the ONE and ONLY ONE my brethren: the King of Kings and Lord of Lords! In Him, majesty and holiness reign supreme! But what is even more important, is that He knows our fears, and can empathize with us on our pilgrim’s journey, because He faced the same things in His brief sojourn here on earth. 

That’s why He is such a Champion, such a Leader and could utter the words of our Bit to His doubting disciple Thomas with the utmost sincerity and truth. ‘Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.’ 

And if you want to see why he could truly say that, then read Isaiah 53, where he describes the ‘Suffering Servant,’ a foretelling of what Jesus would suffer. I’ll just remind us of the last three verses. ‘Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise (crush) him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand. 

He shall see of the travail (distress) of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many: for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil (plunder) with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.’ (Is.53:10-12) 

Yes my fellow believers, that’s what Jesus suffered on our behalf, and therefore earned to right to say what He said. Now here are some explanations from the scholars. ’53:10-12. It pleased the Lord to bruise (from daka; “to crush”) him refers to the same condition in verse 5 (utterly crush Him for our moral iniquities). Put him to grief reads “pierce” Him in the Dead Sea Scroll copy of the text. His seed refers to those who will come to believe in Him. An offering for sin (asham, “guilt offering”) involves the trespass offering described in Numbers 5:5-10. 

The phrase he shall prolong his days indicates that the Servant’s ministry will not end with His violent death, and certainly implies His resurrection. The pleasure of the Lord refers to God’s ultimate purposes which will be accomplished by the atoning death and resurrection of the Servant. His intercession refers to His high priestly ministry, by which He makes intercession on the basis of His own substitutionary death.  The chapter ends with the glorification and exaltation of the Servant of the Lord.’  

And so it very well should my people! Hn, hn! I’m chuckling because I used some poetic license there, switching the position of the last two sentences because I thought it a better ending. Christ should be glorified and exalted at the end, that’s the proper climax! (smile) 

Anyway friends, that’s just an inkling of what Jesus suffered for us, so we could be set free from sin and receive everlasting life. Shouldn’t we therefore show Him much more appreciation and gratitude? Of course we should. So let’s do better than we doing nuh! All of us can improve in some area(s) of our lives that will exalt and glorify Jesus much more than at present. 

Remember it’s in OUR best interest do so, since Jesus doesn’t really need anything from us, but we desperately need lots of stuff from Him! So please let wisdom and common sense abound! Much LOVE!

…He knew NO sin…but was made the bearer of ALL sin…FOR US…

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 June 2017 2 Corinthians 5:21.

2 Corinthians 5:21.   For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

Aye mih breddren, Saturday has rolled around once again! What are your plans eh? I know I’m not planning to do much of anything productive. It will be mostly a day of rest and relaxation, especially if it’s another nice one like the last few. And it’s supposed to go up to around thirty degrees Celsius. 

Mama yo! Many will now complain that it’s too hot, and the a/c will be blasting cold air. But many others will also break out the sunscreen lotion and work on their tans. It’s a good thing that my tan is natural yes, I don’t have to work at it. (smile) Thank You Lord! 

Anyway, since it’s Saturday, let’s look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm offered this week nuh, in his marvelous effort to inspire us to aspire to a better tomorrow. Hear this one: ‘Without action you aren’t going anywhere. An ounce of practice is worth more than tons of preaching.’ 

And is that ever so true and rather appropriate to our Christian faith my brethren, because we’re certainly doing more talking, more preaching, rather than putting the preaching into action, as is most necessary in this lost and evil world. 

Then he tells us: ‘Forgive and let it go. The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. An eye for eye only ends up making the whole world blind.’ I guess you have to be strong to be able to forgive and let go of hurts inflicted by others. And the eye for an eye thing will certainly make the world blind. 

What did Jesus have to say about the blind leading the blind? ‘And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.’ (Matt.15:14) Gospel truth that! For Jesus doesn’t lie. 

This next quote is a bit touchy. ‘You are in control. Nobody can hurt you without your permission.’ Technically speaking it’s true, we allow others to hurt us. But when someone does dreadful things to us, it’s not that easy to say ‘I won’t let them hurt me,’ and just turn off the hurt. 

The penultimate quote advises: ‘You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.’ The only problem there is that our current ocean of humanity has much much more than just a few dirty drops in it. 

And I’ve left the best for last. ‘A good leader is a person who takes a little more than his share of the blame and a little less than his share of the credit.’ More gospel truth friends! And there’s no better example of that than our own Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

Just look at all He did for us nuh, all the ‘sufferation’ He endured on our behalf, and from then to now, He’s never gotten the plaudits He so rightfully deserves. But he didn’t do what he did for praise and glory, but for LOVE! Can you imagine it? Hn! Most of our leaders today are simply out for their own glorification. 

However our Bit declares of Jesus: ‘For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.’ 

The Father really put Him between a rock and a hard place, but He did what He had to do without a lot of complaining. No, it wasn’t easy, even for Him as the Son of God, but it’s what the Father desired, and He wanted to please the Father. Oh, how I wish that more of us supposed Christians could feel the same way; simply desirous of pleasing the Father and doing what He asks of us without a lot of hemming and hawing. That would be the day! 

Ah friends, it’s not easy living a true Christian life, but when we put our minds to it, with the help of God, it is certainly exciting and adventurous. And I’m not talking from hearsay there, but from personal experience. 

And all I want to do today is highlight a couple of scripture verses that enhance our Bit, from the magnificent prophecy of Isaiah in chapter 53, re the Suffering servant. ‘He is despised and rejected of (forsaken by) men: a man of sorrows (pains), and acquainted with grief (sickness): and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. 

Surely he hath borne our griefs (pains), and carried our sorrows (sicknesses): yet we did esteem (reckon) him stricken, smitten of (struck down by) God, and afflicted. But he was wounded (pierced through) for our transgressions, he was bruised (crushed) for our iniquities: the chastisement (discipline, self-control) of our peace was upon him, and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.’ (Is.53:3-6) 

Yes friends, our leader showed us the way, by walking His talk with strength of purpose. He bore our sinful burdens selflessly and gave us His peace and righteousness. Now why can’t we just live up to the little He asks of us eh…to LOVE the Father, LOVE ourselves, not in a narcissist manner, and to LOVE our neighbours as ourselves? 

Is that so hard to do my Christian brethren? What a wonderful world we’d truly have! And there would be supreme joy both in heaven and on earth! Let’s try and make that a reality nuh my people. With God’s help it’s possible. But we have to sincerely want to do it and then put out the great effort necessary. Much LOVE!

…that tremendous gift of atonement…paid for with Jesus’ blood…should have us chomping at the bit…to do God’s bidding…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 January 2017 2 Corinthians 5:7.

2 Corinthians 5:17.    (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)

Aye mih people, the ole fella’s here again – later than I had planned, but earlier than the last few days. (smile) 

And I am feeling better, spiritually and physically. But I am certainly not out of the woods yet – though with perseverance and the Lord’s help I hope it won’t be too long or difficult a trip back. 

Oh friends, I can never consider the goodness and LOVING-kindness of our magnificent and magnanimous God without feeling a deep, tender and abiding LOVE for Him! He’s been ever so good to me, that sometimes it just boggles my imagination. 

Now don’t get me wrong, it has not always been wine, roses and song, there have been some serious trials and tribulations along the way, many of them unexpected and out of the blue, like this past week in the hospital with heart problems. 

You know with that sort of stuff you usually feel a pain or something of the sort… well I have NOT felt a pain up to this day, just a constant shortness of breath. And thankfully I listened to the Holy Spirit that guided me to the hospital’s Emergency Department, otherwise I might not be alive to tell the tale today. 

And come to think of it, this is the tenth year – can you imagine- ten years since I’ve been writing the Bit, and I certainly never expected to ring it in with heart problems in the hospital. 

But our God is such a dramatic and mysterious God, that with Him anything is possible at any time. And you know what, somewhere along the line He is going to use this episode of my life for His glorification. I don’t know how, why or when – but that’s why He is God! (smile) 

Ah mih breddren, I think I’ve gotten lost somewhere along the line yes, (smile) I don’t remember what point I was trying to make. 

The long and short of the story though is that I could not have written the Bit for so long, especially if you knew how it began; with just a simple verse from the Good Book and maybe some inane comment from me, to where it is now. 

But it was ALL the Lord’s guidance and doing my people! I took the leap of faith and He extended His faithfulness. That’s why, if nothing else, I can always proclaim His faithfulness. But the important thing is that one first has to take whatever leap of faith He is advocating. 

Now that brings us to our Bit; a few simple but very powerful words: ‘(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)’ That’s the basic foundation of our great action movement – Christianity! 

As the Good Book says: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb.11:6) So you see friends, we have to faithfully believe in and diligently seek the Lord if we expect to reap His blessings, grace and mercies. 

Listen to this wonderful promise relayed through Jeremiah. ‘For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end (a future and a hope).’ (Jer.29:11) 

Now isn’t that just a marvellous promise from an omnipotent God? It certainly is! The question then is why don’t we supposed believers cling to it the way we ought to eh? 

Is it that we don’t truly believe, or our faith level isn’t that high, and on top of it all the lustful pleasures and material things of this world obscure God’s wonderful and faithful promises? 

And Jeremiah though he was used and abused in his prophetic ministry could still say: ‘Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is. For he shall be as a tree planted by waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see (fear) when heath cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful (anxious) in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.’ (Jer.17:7-8) 

Oh friends, Christians would be a whole lot better of in all respects if we would only take hold of the thousands of God promises in His Word and cling to them the way we cling to the foolishness of the world. 

And we’ll end with some marvellous sentiments from Jeremiah’s Lamentations. ‘And I said, My strength and my hope is perished from the Lord: Remembering mine affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall (bitterness). My soul hath them still in remembrance, and is humbled (bowed down) in me. 

This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. 

The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.’ (Lam.3:18-26) 

Oh my people, if Jeremiah could have been as abused as he was, and still have hope, faith and trust in the Lord, then why can’t we who have not faced such persecution do the same eh? 

That’s a question we have to answer individually. Let’s hope we do it positively and soon, for we know not when our Lord and Saviour Jesus will return. And once He comes back, ALL bets are off! Much LOVE!

…following Jesus is not an easy row to hoe…but it provides the greatest rewards…that’s for sure…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 March 2016 Philippians 1:29‏‏

Philippians 1:29.   For unto you it is given in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.

Oh friends, the ole fella had a rather rough day yesterday, as I guess many of you also had. But yuh know what? Yesterday is dead and gone, and tomorrow never comes, so the only thing we have to deal with is today! 

And there’s nothing better than today when you’re a believer in Jesus Christ, because every morning that you awake your life is flooded with new mercies and blessings. No other faith promises, much less guarantees that! 

And all believers shouted ‘Glory to God in His high heaven, who looks after His wayward children with such care, compassion and LOVING-kindness! Bless His holy name!’ 

Yes my brethren, there’s none that can compare to Jehovah God! And in keeping with all that, let’s wail our Wednesday Wail nuh with enthusiasm and sincerity as befits the followers of Christ. 

‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. 

I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Oh isn’t it just wonderful to be associated with Jesus my people! It surely is! With His breath of life flowing through our frail bodies we can do anything, even move mountains! All it requires is that we focus on Him and just keep looking straight ahead to the glorious life He has planned for those who believe and work on His behalf. 

And all God’s people loudly declared another joyful and grateful ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And I must apologize for the rather late Bit, but as usual, I went to bed pretty late this morning, consequently got up late, then had to go out the street to run a necessary errand. But I’m here now, all fired up with the Holy Spirit, ready to bend your ears with the Word! (smile) 

And what better way to begin than with our Bit. ‘For unto you it is given in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.’ 

Ah friends, we cannot expect to have the good without the bad, as Job told his wife (Job 2:10) for that’s just life. So if we believe in Christ and receive all the benefits that flow from such belief, then we also have to accept whatever disadvantages spring from it. 

Now listen to Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. 

The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ: if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. 

For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creature (creation) waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.’ (Rom.8:14-19) 

Oh my brethren what a blessed situation, if we only bear the problems that we do encounter with faith and steadfastness! Now let’s see what the scholars have to say about some of that. 

‘8:15. The Spirit of adoption: The Holy Spirit places the believer as a son in God’s family. Abba (Aramaic for “father”): This is the intimate name used only by members of the family. Its use here denotes the intimacy of the believer’s relation to God.’ 

How wonderful is that eh friends, to be on such an intimate basis with Almighty God, who so LOVINGLY adopted us when we became believers in His Son Jesus Christ! 

‘8:17. Joint-heirs with Christ: All believers share all the inheritance together. They also have the promise of glorification if their lives are lived devotedly and sacrificially unto the Lord.’ 

Mama mia! Our God is so wonderful that He adopts us when we become believers, and makes us heirs of the kingdom along with Jesus! Glory be! That happens in no other faith but Christianity, so why should I embrace any other eh! 

‘8:18. The sufferings of this present time: See 2 Corinthians 4:17-18. [You can look that up yourself, or we’ll deal with it tomorrow]. The glory which shall be revealed: The blessed hope of the Christian looks ahead with anticipation to this great moment. See also 1 Thess.4-15; Titus 2:13.’ 

Yeh friends, the suffering of this age cannot be compared with the glory to come, that’s why we have to keep our focus on the future, looking ahead to our glorious time with Christ! 

‘8:19. The creature, or creation, eagerly looks forward to the revelation of the sons of God in the Millennium (Christ’s thousand year earthly reign) because that is the time when the curse will be lifted and creation will be restored to Edenic conditions.’ 

Mama yo! What a time that will be my fellow believers, when we’ve gone back to living in conditions that reflect the Garden of Eden! I can’t wait for it. (smile) But we have to learn to handle the suffering down here first friends. 

So as everything tells us, let’s not focus on the rough times we endure down here right now, but instead, have our mind’s eye set on the time of glorious fellowship with Christ, when He comes back to reign here on earth and when all wrongs will be made right. That’s the only way to handle our troubles right now. Much LOVE!

…through our eyes of faith…let’s see the good times afar off…and let them help us to endure today’s suffering… 

P.S. Sorry, but I had another couple of distractions which made the Bit even later than it should have been. But as they say, better late than never. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 October 2015 Ephesians 6:13

Ephesians 6:13.   Wherefore take unto you (take up) the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Well my brethren, it’s Wednesday, and unfortunately my ole right knee is still acting up. Chuh! But it did not stop me from going down to the Hershey Centre last night and enjoying the proceedings…and actively partying too, I would have you know, ably supported by my African Rosewood cane, though not as energetically as I would have liked. 

The Festival of Praise Concert was put on by a group of American Gospel Artistes. They included recognized gospel singers like Fred Hammond, who was the main man in putting the show together; Hezekiah Walker, Kim Burrell, and Donnie McClurkin. 

Oh Friends the joint was hopping from the time the M.C. a Christian comedian, who was pretty good himself, stopped and the first notes of the music rang out. Hn! You couldn’t sit if you wanted to because everybody was standing. 

And what amazed and pleased me a whole lot is that there were no openers and no headline artists. I’ve never seen this done before, but they all came out onto the stage from the very beginning and stayed there till the end, taking turns singing and backing up each other. Oh glory to God, they left their egos at home! 

I didn’t know most of the songs because I don’t follow American Gospel music that much, but believe you me, the crowd of between three and four thousand knew them, including a chubby white boy who was right up at the stage singing and dancing all night long, holding up a banner that read ‘Polaski.’ 

And then in the ending round of celebrations he and his group of white females found themselves on the stage singing and dancing and hugging the performers. It was indeed a good night my people. 

Oh, there was also an altar call, and some one hundred and thirty one (131)  persons came down to the front and received Jesus! Oh glory to God!  Praise His Holy Name! 

The lighting was good and so was the music, just a little too loud though for my liking, and that’s because I was down on the floor, about ten rows from the stage because my young daughter bought the tickets and she figured I’d like to be close to the stage. 

But at those kinds of events I like to be up in the back seats, where the music isn’t as loud. But thank the Lord, this morning I don’t have tinnitus (ringing in the ears); my ears seem perfectly all right! 

Anyway Friends, it was a good night. I just hope that those who were saved woke up this morning feeling different and that they will continue their new relationship with Jesus. Let’s pray that they will indeed do so. 

Now there was so much praise and thanks and glorification given to God there last night, that it makes me wonder where all of that is during our normal everyday lives eh? If we would only expend a half of that godly energy in our normal lives, this world would be truly a wonderful place. 

But sadly, outside of the church and these kinds of gatherings we seem to lose our Christian flavour; our salt is dead and our light diminished. In real life, we just don’t seem to walk our talk. 

But though that’s been the bane of Christianity for a long time now, it’s time we change it, especially in these difficult and crucial times that we’re facing. Only truly walked Christianity will make a significant difference in this wicked and ungodly world. 

Anyway, to day is Wednesday, that means it’s wailing time! So please let’s wail together: ‘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 am I ever glad to be alive Friends, despite my numerous aches and pains. (smile) And yuh better believe I am looking forward to a glorious future with Jesus! And if you are not, I will strongly advise you to get your act together and get to know Him, for He is the BEST thing, the BEST gift ever given to man! 

Praise our heavenly Father for sacrificing His only Son so that we could be cleansed of our abominable sins and be reconciled to Him! What an awesome show of LOVE! 

And with all my enthusiasm and writing about the gospel concert last night, (smile) I guess we only have time and space now for our Bit. ‘Wherefore take unto you (take up) the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, that’s what every believer needs to do: put on God’s armour so that we can withstand the evil attacks of the enemy, because that’s the only way we can withstand them. 

And what I truly like about that verse is the last part; ‘…and having done all, to stand.’ That means my people, once we’ve done all that we can about the situation, we just need to stand; stand up strong and steadfast, unmovable in our beliefs and actions, and let God do His part, because the battle is not ours but His. We can’t defeat the enemy without His awesome help. 

So today, please, I implore us to put on the armour of God, we all know what that is (Eph.6:14-18), then let us just stand strong in the might of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! That is indeed heavenly wisdom, and if we do it, we will eventually reap a substantial harvest, be the salt and light of the earth. Glory Hallelujah! Much, much LOVE, my people!

…oh living for Jesus…is such a wonderful and interesting way to live this earthly life…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 August 2015 Philippians 3:13

Philippians 3:13.  Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before. 

Top o’ the morn, mih breddren! A glorious day lies ahead of us, filled with all sorts of wonderful goodies prepared by our wonderful God, especially for this Saturday in August 2015. Glory to God! 

He is so good to us that there are no words to truly do Him justice. Magnificent, majestic, magnanimous, mercurial, come close, but still leave something unsaid. His unconditional LOVE, and the undeserved blessings, mercies, forgiveness and compassion poured out on us, especially the sacrifice of His only Son Jesus… 

Oh Friends, they are indescribable. (smile) And the least we can do is return His LOVING-kindness with that of our own, to the best of our ability, through obedience, praise, worship, thanksgiving and glorification. 

And having said all of that, here is an interesting quote from Laura Palmer. It seems that she was a character on the 1990 hit TV. show Twin Peaks, which apparently is being revived.  I guess there is also a book called the Secret Diary of Laura Palmer with a number of her quotes. 

This one says that, ‘The past should be culled like a box of fresh strawberries, rinsed of debris, sweetened judiciously and served in small portions, not very often.’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my people. The past should not be dwelt upon, as so many of us do, thereby hampering the present and shortchanging the future.  Like Laura says, we ought to just wrap it up nicely and occasionally trot out the good parts. 

And my One More Day Devotional for People with Chronic Illness, from which I got the quote, further states. ‘Fond memories are healthy when they remind us how our lives are formed and shaped by our experiences. Memories reveal our development into the productive people we are today. Life does get better every day because we have both the joys of the present and some sweet memories of the past.’ 

But Friends, we MUST NOT LIVE IN THE PAST, but rather concentrate on each day as something new and alive with lots of wonderful promise. Too many of us look to the past too often and either dredge up the distasteful bits, or talk too much about the good old days. 

Certainly the old days were good, but believe me my people, our best days are still out in front of us. And until we realize this, our days will be gloomy and miserable reminiscing too much  on what’s already past, and not making new and wonderful dreams for today and tomorrow. 

That brings us to our very appropriate Bit from Bruh Paul to the Philippians. ‘Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before.’ 

Yuh see that Friends, though Bruh Paul had reached some glorious heights in his ministry and walk with Jesus, he still maintained that he hadn’t reached where he really wanted to be. His objective is to know Christ as fully as can be; ‘experiencing His power, sharing His sufferings, being made like Jesus in death, and experiencing resurrection from the dead. 

At this point in his life the apostle does know Christ, but not to the full extent possible. He has experienced His power, but not to the degree he desires. He has been made like Jesus in His death, but can still die more to sin and self. He does “walk in newness of life,” but there is room for improvement.’ 

And so is there for all of us my fellow believers. Those are some explanations from the scholars on verse 12. Therefore since Bruh Paul has not attained his objective, he’s intent on putting everything behind him, so that he can concentrate on what is coming on the next wave.  

The scholars explain verse 13. thus: ‘3:13. Forgetting those things which are behind refers both to his religious credentials (vs. 5-6), now counted “as loss” (v.7), and to his past Christian achievements and successes. In ever pursuing his goal to know Christ, (v.10), he refuses to let past guilt pull him down, or to rest on past laurels. Either could spell spiritual disaster.’ 

Oh my fellow believers are we pursuing the things of Christ, pressing on towards the mark, reaching out to those things which are in front of us, not letting the past distract us from the future, wanting to know Christ so badly that we can think of nothing else? 

Oh, I know that not all of us can have Bruh Paul’s zeal, knowledge and perseverance, but we can all do much better than we’re currently doing. If we are truthful with ourselves, many of us are not really concentrating on maturing in our Christian walk, but are just ambling along, without any real zeal or purpose. That certainly is not good enough Friends. 

As believers in Christ, we have to have a hunger for Him, for the things which pertain to Him. ‘That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable to his death.’ (Phil.3:10) That’s what Bruh Paul desired, and what we should also be desirous of; that strong feeling to get to know Christ as well as we possibly can. 

It’s not easy, as Bruh Paul certainly found out, but he never gave up on his quest, and neither should we, for as we know, all things are possible with Jesus who strengthens us. (Phil.4:13) 

So today my brethren, please let’s stop living in the past and look to the glorious future that Jesus has in store for us. Remember too what He said way back when, in talking about the tests of discipleship. ‘No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of heaven.’ (Luke 9:62) 

Yes Friends, anyone who puts other matters before God’s work, is of little use to Him. Please don’t forget that, for it’s the wisdom of heaven!  Much LOVE!

…but his wife (Lot’s) looked back…and she became a pillar of salt… (Gen.19:26)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 March 2013 Isaiah 51:12

Isaiah 51:12.      I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass.
 
Oh Friends, isn’t it most excellent to see another blessed day on God’s wonderful earth? It certainly is! So let’s all take a deep breath, hold it for a moment, then slowly let it out, while simultaneously contemplating the miracle of life that exists in us, and the goodness of God that enables us to keep on breathing minute after minute, day by day. And having done that, and realizing what rich and exquisite gifts the Lord has bestowed on us, both through ordinary physical life and spiritual rebirth, reconciliation through His Son Jesus Christ, all His earth bound children declared a heartfelt: ‘Thank You Lord! We LOVE You and praise Your Holy Name! We know that it’s nothing we’ve done, but Your monumental, unconditional LOVE for us that causes You to continue looking upon us with such awesome and amazing LOVING-kindness. We faithfully pray that our wonderful LOVE relationship will continue forever, throughout eternity. In Jesus Name. Amen.’ Yes Friends, what a great LOVE our heavenly Father bears towards us, and consequently desires us to bear to each other. No wonder St. Therese of Liseux, the Saint of the Little Flower, emphasized in her short, rough but productive earthly sojourn, that ‘What matters in life, is not great deeds, but great LOVE.’ And if that isn’t an undeniable truth, then I don’t know what is! Sadly though, of all the emotions, that noble emotion of LOVE, which we need the most, is what we have the least of. Granted, the word is constantly bandied about, but there’s no true substance to it. It’s used mostly in a worldly, carnal manner, oftimes as a synonym for fleshly lust. But when coming to true LOVE for God, and true LOVE for our fellow man, our world is sadly lacking. True LOVE for God doesn’t mean continually disparaging Him and removing Him from our society. And true LOVE for our neighbours certainly doesn’t mean the worldwide strife, resentment, bitterness and other stressful emotions that currently dominate our days and nights. And unfortunately my people, without real LOVE, we’re just spinning our wobbly wheels in self-destruct mode. That’s because the negative emotions opposed to LOVE aren’t conducive to building or creating, but are all forces of destruction. And if we keep letting those negative forces rule the roost, then we’ll just keep going the way we are now…falling, falling, falling into the disastrous pit of an earthly hell. It doesn’t take a genius to see that my brethren. But it does take a wise, considerate and LOVING human being to want to do something to stop the carnage, the ever-quickening downward trend. And as I keep reminding us, it’s only the true believers who are capable of catching the reins of this runaway horse and carriage we call modern-day life and bringing it to a halt and then reversing its sordid direction to that which leads to sincere repentance, praise worship, glorification and LOVE for our Creator, Jehovah God. Ah mih people, unless this reversal of directions happens, and happens soon too, we’ll all end up in dire circumstances. The terrible plight of our world is there for all to see; what with the tough and getting tougher economic situations creating worldwide joblessness, the immense poverty, sickness, homelessness, famine, drought, climate change and all the other negatives now consuming us. None of that speaks of real LOVE, especially when there’s more than enough of everything to go around. And we haven’t even mentioned the numerous social uprisings, the wars and rumours of wars that are concurrently taking place alongside all the other disastrous situations. Oh Friends, what a mess we’ve made of God’s wonderful creation! And it all stems from a sad lack of LOVE. The unfortunate thing about LOVE though, is that it takes time to build, because it needs trust and faith, things that cannot be had instantly. Meanwhile, hate, anger and strife can be raised up immediately and produce immense destruction at the proverbial drop of a hat. Anyway my fellow believers, the moral of the story, the purpose of this epistle (smile) is to have us wake up and realize that it’s imperative we get the ball of LOVE rolling as quickly as possible. There’s absolutely no time to lose, since Lucifer and his wicked cronies already have a substantial head start on us. That means we have lots of ground to make up, before we can even think of forging ahead of the evildoers. So please, if we seriously and sincerely LOVE Jesus and want to please Him, want to help build His glorious kingdom, then let’s get it together nuh. Let’s cut out all the pussyfooting and blah blah blah, and get some real action going. We can’t allow the immense sacrifice of Christ’s sinless life on Calvary’s cross to be wasted, to go for naught under the evil onslaught, because we’re too comfortable, lazy and/or afraid. Remember Bruh Paul’s strong assurance to Timothy: ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7) Therefore, as true believers, we ought to come out swinging, giving no quarter to the workers of iniquity in this LOVE Revolution, if we want to see a return to God and all the things that make for a safe, satisfied, wonderful, godly and righteous life. Now let’s allow our Bit, and the three verses after it, to take us home, so that we can ponder on the truth contained in them, and how our lives reflect that truth. ‘I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a (mortal) man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass; And forgettest the Lord thy maker, that hath stretched forth the heavens, and laid the foundations of the earth; and hast feared continually every day because of the fury of the oppressor, as if he were ready (preparing) to destroy? and where is the fury of the oppressor? The captive exile hasteneth that he may be loosed, and that he should not die in the pit, nor that his bread should fail. But I am the Lord thy God, that divided the sea, whose waves roared: The Lord of hosts is his name.’ (Is.51:12-15) Oh my people, please let’s contemplate today on those harsh words of our mightily displeased God. Yes, He is mightily displeased because we’re doing just like, and even worse than the Israelites of old, to whom Isaiah directed those words. And having pondered them, let’s then rise up and do better. If not for our sakes, then for Jesus and our children’s. It’s the wisdom of the ages. Much LOVE!…he who has ears to hear…let him hear…otherwise he’ll surely feel the wrath of God…