Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 December 2018 Luke 2:7.

Luke 2:7.   ​And she brought forth her first-born son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger (feed trough); because there was no room for them in the inn.
 
MERRY CHRISTMAS!
‘Drink ah rum and ah punchacrema, drink ah rum! It’s Christmas morning!’ Ah mih people, in my area it might be a tad early to drink a rum and a punchacrema, although some of you on the other side of the world most likely have tibbled some already. (smile) I have a brand new bottle of the rich, creamy stuff to check out later. A friend sends me one every year, that’s his Christmas present to me. 

However, let’s get to the important stuff: It’s Christmas morning! Glory be my friends and Scrip-Bit family! We’ve lived to see another one of these monumental days that ushered in the beginnings of our faith! That miraculous immaculate conception of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, which ended up in His humble birth on this day some two thousand years ago in a lowly stable. 

 But that was just the planting of the seed, one of the four most important days in the annals of man, where God finally put His exemplary plan of salvation, free saving grace and eternal life for all and sundry into production, having promised it for numerous years before! Yes, it all began in a dirty animal stable with the birth of a baby boy called Jesus, our Emmanuel, our God with us! And there was such a racket around the fields of that little town of Bethlehem on this momentous night, that the world has never forgotten it. 

Now let’s remember it in praise and worshipful song as we sing the much adored song, ‘Joy to the world,’ written by that prolific writer Isaac Watts way back in the 18th century. Let’s raise the rafters with the joy that emanates from our hearts and souls this Christmas morning of 2018 as we joyously, joyfully, ‘joyeuxly’ (smile) declare: ‘Joy to the World; the Lord is come! Let earth receive her King! Let ev’ry heart prepare Him room, And Heaven and nature sing. (Repeat line twice) 

Joy to the earth, the Savior reigns! Let men their songs employ; While fields & floods, rocks, hills & plains Repeat the sounding joy. (Repeat line twice) No more let sins and sorrows grow, Nor thorns infest the ground; He comes to make his blessings flow Far as the curse is found. (Repeat line twice) He rules the world with truth and grace, And makes the nations prove The glories of His righteousness, And wonders of His love. (Repeat line twice) Joy to the World; the Lord is come! Let earth receive her King! Let ev’ry heart prepare Him room, And Heaven and nature sing. (Repeat line twice).’ 

Yeh friends on this Christmas Day there should be such explosive joy in EVERY Christian heart that we should just want to burst with LOVE for Christ! For He is indeed the Way, the Truth and the Light! The awesome means by which we are saved! For NO ONE comes to the Father BUT through Him! 

Now let’s take a look at some of the miraculous action that happened around Bethlehem on that most auspicious night. Now Joseph and the pregnant Mary had gone up to Bethlehem to be registered per Roman edict. And it so happens that while up there Mary’s time came upon her: ‘And she brought forth her first-born son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger (feed trough); because there was no room for them in the inn.’ 

Now one would think that the omnipotent Lord God Jehovah, His heavenly Father, could have made room for them at the inn, but He was out to prove a point by showing that humble and lowly beginnings don’t mean a thing! If His Son could be born in a loud, foul smelling barn of animals and do great things, so could any one else! 

Oh, listen to this explanation from the scholars: ‘2:7. Swaddling clothes were bandage-like strips of cloth wrapped around an infant to ensure that the limbs would grow straight. Not to swaddle a child would be a form of abuse (Ezek. 16:2-4). This wrapping would aid the shepherds in identifying Jesus.’ 

Now here’s the action! ‘And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon (stood before) them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore (greatly) afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. 

For unto you is born this day in the city of David (Bethlehem) a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes (cloths), lying in a manger (feed trough). And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.’ (Luke 2:8-14) 

Wow friends! Can you imagine that quiet, silent night in the fields around Bethlehem, with shepherds sleepily guarding their animals, when an angel suddenly appears and tells them about the birth of this heavenly child, then a host of other angels arrive and begin singing, glorifying God, and exuding peace on earth and good will to all mankind! The shepherds were probably expecting another quiet, uneventful night, when to their amazement, it suddenly turned into a rather raucous affair of praise and thanksgiving and good news! 

Oh my people, those shepherds were so excited by the news that the Good Book says: ‘And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered (marvelled) at those things which were told them by the shepherd. But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.’ (Luke 2:16-20) 

Ah my people, as we celebrate this most auspicious occasion, please let’s remember why it all happened, for our benefit, and let’s do like those shepherds did so long ago, when they heard the good news, praise and glorify God for the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

And let’s not forget to declare our Tuesday Mantra which says who and whose we are; Christ’s! So as always, in strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ And today is definitely the day to share that awesome LOVE OF JESUS! Much LOVE!

…the first time He came humbly and without much fanfare…the next time though…the heavens will burst forth…and He’ll come as the royalty…the mighty King He truly is…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 December 2017 Luke 2:11.

Luke 2:11.   For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

                   MERRY  CHRISTMAS  EVERYBODY!

Oh friends, it’s Christmas Day! Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas to you and yours! And I do hope you all have a joyous day, a day filled with celebrations and lifting up the LOVING-kindness of God, through His Son Jesus Christ, who was born on this day some years ago. (smile) 

And to lead off the celebrations, let’s give voice to one of our favourite Christmas Carols, ‘Joy to the world,’ written by Isaac Watts, in the early 18th century, and which so appropriately describes the beautiful uproarious sensations that should be felt all over the world, at the miraculous birth of Christ. 

So with grateful and joyous hearts, let’s sing: ‘Joy to the world, the Lord has come! Let earth receive her King  Let every heart prepare Him room  And Heaven and nature sing  And Heaven and nature sing  And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing. Joy to the World, the Savior reigns! Let men their songs employ While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains  Repeat the sounding joy Repeat the sounding joy Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy 

No more let sins and sorrows grow Nor thorns infest the ground He comes to make His blessings flow Far as the curse is found Far as the curse is found Far as, far as, the curse is found  He rules the world with truth and grace And makes the nations prove  The glories of His righteousness And wonders of His LOVE And wonders of His LOVE And wonders, wonders, of His LOVE.’ 

Ah friends, this glorious day is and was indeed all about the wonders of Almighty God’s amazing LOVE toward us.  How does the Good Book put it? ‘But God commendeth (demonstrates) his LOVE toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom.5:8) I don’t think we can ever really comprehend the depth of God’s LOVE for us nuh mih breddren. The magnanimity of God offering His Son as a living sacrifice for us, is just too much for our frail and feeble minds to understand. But that’s another thing; the Lord doesn’t need us to understand, just to accept His goodness and mercy and believe on His Son Jesus.  

And so, as we eat and drink and enjoy goodwill and cheer with our friends and families, let us not forget the reason for all this celebration and enjoyment; the birth of Jesus Christ on a cold winter’s night long, long ago. Consequently, we need to keep Him uppermost in our hearts and minds today, giving Him much praise and thanks for ALL that He’s done for us from the day of His birth to the current time, and ALL that He’s promised to do in the future.  

Unfortunately though, not everyone is able to stay at home and celebrate today, what with our 24/7 society, some of us have to get up and go to work on this cold Christmas Day morn. And though we feel sorry for them, we glad that it’s them and not us. (smile) Anyway, let’s send them off with a rousing rendition of our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, to get their adrenaline flowing and their motors running smoothly in spite of their unfortunate situation.  

As one 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!’ 

And as always, those who are not going to work are the loudest and hoarsest. (smile) But let’s reminisce a li’l, go back to that faithful night, or early morning two thousand years ago. Let’s check out the scene. Shepherds were watching their flocks in the cold weather, when suddenly an angel appeared , ‘and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes (bandage-like cloths), lying in a manger (feed trough). And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying , Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.’ (Luke 2:9-14) 

What an amazing time that must have been eh friends! Angels glorifying God, as they deliver the good news of Christ’s birth and His divine purpose to bring peace and good will to all the people on earth. Unfortunately, that hasn’t been accomplished just yet, but we’re working on it, and today ought to be a reminder of Jesus’ purpose for coming to earth, and subsequently ours, as His faithful believers and followers. 

So let’s celebrate today and get reinvigorated with Christ’s Spirit nuh, so that we can go out tomorrow and ramp up our efforts to bring that peace and good will to Mother Earth. It’s certainly a worthwhile cause. Much LOVE!

…what better way to celebrate Christ’s birth…than by spreading…peace…LOVE…and good will…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 December 2016 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.

One more day friends, one more day! Glory Hallelujah! Yes, we’ve been granted, blessed with life to enjoy another day on God’s great earth! It’s a generous present from our heavenly Father, so we ought to be grateful and use it wisely, following whatever plan He has designed for our lives. 

It’s not to be used in riotous living or perpetrating dark, evil deeds, but for good and godly purposes, whereby our Father can be glorified. Remember, glorifying God is one of our most important jobs down here one earth. In fact, everything we do or say should in some way add to His glorification. 

And having gotten that straight, since it’s Saturday, let’s turn to some quotes from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And this week, Anselm seems to have been rather preoccupied with lies and lying, for all the quotes dealt with some aspect of untruth.  

Here is the first one: ‘A person who says they will never lie to you is probably lying already.’ And does that ever ring true! For if anyone has to convince us that they are telling the truth, then it adds a sort of false ring to their words and quickly raises our suspicions.  

The second quote says: ‘Never lie to someone who trusts you. Never trust someone who lies to you.’ Now that is excellent advice, for trust is very hard to come by, but can very easily be lost! 

But here is my favourite quote of Anselm’s for this week. ‘Never lie to a woman’s question. Sometimes she already knows the answer. That’s why she is asking.’ 

Ah mih male breddren, that is something for us to truly sit and ponder, since women can be so devious when they are ready. And you women reading this, please don’t get all up in arms, because that is the gospel truth! (smile) They’ll often ask an incriminating question, to which they already know the answer, just to see our response, to see if they can catch us lying. 

Ah Lord eh! The wiles that we use against each other! Seriously though my people, lies cause so many problems that we must all try to avoid them as much as possible, rather DON’T LIE AT ALL! That’s what our Saviour and our faith teaches us. 

Once upon a time I used to lie, and I think I was pretty good at it, (smile) but eventually I realized that lying caused more problems than it solved, because for every lie you told, you had to make up another one to cover the one before it, and the lies just keep multiplying until you forget whom you’ve told what, and in the long run you get caught out anyway. 

So it’s always better to tell the truth, even though it may get you in hot water. And I can certainly remember getting in plenty hot water for telling the truth, (smile) but then your conscience is clear and you don’t have to worry about what you’ve said to whom. Now I never set out to preach a sermon on lying, but we never know where the Holy Spirit will lead us. 

And likewise, it lead me unawares to today’s Bit. As I was flipping through the Good Book, looking for something I could get my head around, I suddenly came upon it, and realized right away that that was my Eureka moment. So what does it say? ‘The fear (reverential awe) of the Lord is the (principal) beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.’ Ah friends, Cousin Sol never spoke truer words! 

But before we get into any scriptures that corroborate it, let’s hear from the scholars. ‘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.’ 

Yes friends, before one can acquire wisdom, one has to have a reverential awe of the Lord because it is through Him that wisdom is dispensed. What did James say on the subject? ‘If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not (without reproach), and it shall be given him. 

But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering (not doubting). For he that wavereth (doubts) is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive anything from the Lord. A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.’ (James 1:5-8) 

Yuh see mih people; wisdom comes from God, but we must have the right awe and respect for Him, and when we ask for it, there must be no doubting in our spirit, else He won’t grant it to us. And we’ll end with some precious words from Job, in chapter 28, re wisdom being the gift of God. 

The scholars tell us: ’28:1-28. This chapter is one of the most beautiful poems on wisdom found in the Scriptures. After describing how laboriously man works to extract the ores and precious metals from the earth (vv. 1-11), Job raises the ultimate question of the sufferer. ‘But where shall wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding?’ (v.12). 

It cannot be purchased with earthly wealth (vv.13-19) but is conveyed only through the controlling factor of the fear of the Lord. ‘And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.’ (v.28). The concept of the fear of the Lord unites all the wisdom books (cf. Prov.1:7; Eccl.12:13).’ 

Yes friends, without a healthy respect for the Lord God Jehovah, wisdom will never be ours. So if we’re smart, (smile) we’ll begin developing that healthy respect and awe right now! Much LOVE!

…the first aspect of wisdom…is fearing God…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 August 2016 Psalm 50:15.

Psalm 50:15.    And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.

And then it was Wednesday; a bright and shiny, but somewhat cloudy day! (smile) I know it sounds somewhat confusing, but the sun is shining and there are a few grey clouds hovering overhead. 

However, the important thing is that the Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is shining as brilliantly as He always does. There’s never an element of cloudiness in Him! Praise His holy name! 

And so, in honour of His constant faithfulness, I want us to begin today by singing this soulful ditty I heard the Hour of Power choir and congregation singing last night. I don’t know it personally, but the simplicity and practical nature of the song touched my heart and made me want to share it. 

So let’s get soulful and sing: ‘Jesus is all the world to me, My life, my joy, my all; He is my strength from day to day, Without Him I would fall. When I’m sad to Him I go.No other one can cheer me so; When I am sad he makes me glad, He’s my friend. 

Jesus is all the world to me, I want no better friend. I trust Him now, I’ll trust Him when Life’s fleeting days shall end. Beautiful life with such a friend, Beautiful life that has no end; Eternal life, Eternal joy, He’s my friend!’ 

Oh what wonderful sentiments my brethren. And as I said earlier, I just LOVE it’s simplicity and practicality. And besides, there’s truly no better friend than Jesus; He is able to satisfy all our needs, calm all our fears and comfort us in the deepest and darkest times of our lives! No human being can do all that for us. 

And to further honour and glorify Him, as well as lift our spirits, let’s declare our Wednesday Wail nuh with plenty enthusiasm, and sincerity. 

Wailing: ‘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 my people, my people, how beautiful it is to be alive on this glorious morn, feeling the breath of God coursing through my body as I look forward to the wonderful future that Jesus has planned for us, if we stick to the programme that He’s outlined! It doesn’t get any better than that friends! 

No wonder our Bit seems so appropriate. ‘And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ Yes my fellow believers, it’s all about glorifying Jehovah God, our Creator and heavenly Provider! 

And we do that by living the life God has set before us, doing so in faith and sincerity, and in times of trouble, crying out to Him for succour so that He can uplift us and further glorify His holy name. Oh what a wonderful Deity we serve and worship my people! 

Now let’s turn to some scriptures that corroborate our Bit. And to begin, we’ll go all the way back to the days of the prophet Samuel, when he lead Israel to repentance. 

‘And Samuel spake unto all the house of Israel, saying, If ye do return unto the Lord with all your hearts, then put away the strange (foreign) gods and Ashtaroth (images of Canaanite goddesses) from among you, and prepare your hearts unto the Lord, and serve him only: and he will deliver you out of the hands of the Philistines.’ (1 Sam.7:3) 

Oh friends, that is exactly what we need to do in this current evil and godless world. Like the Israelites back then, we’re worshipping all sorts of idols and false gods, thus our world is quickly going to hell in a hand basket. And the only thing that will save it is repentance and a sincere return to serving and worshipping the One and True Living God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Yuh see how all the other societies that abandoned Him and worshipped other gods fared? There was never any true peace, just constant war, destruction and despair. Now why do you think our society would be any different, suffer a different fate eh? 

Yes, our God is a merciful and gracious, forgiving and LOVING God, but He’s no push over, He’s very serious about whatever He says. And He’s said several times in His word that if you don’t serve and worship Him, you’ll be destroyed. So I don’t know where we’ve gotten this foolish idea to abandon God, kick Him out of our society, and then expect to prosper. Steups! 

Ah friends, it’s up to us believers to bring about that repentance. It’s not going to be easy, but with God’s awesome help we can do it. Remember we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. 

And we’ll end with this appropriate passage from Job, where his buddy Zophar reproves him. ‘If he (God) cut off (passes by), and shut up (imprisons), or gather together, then who can hinder (restrain) him? For he knoweth vain (deceitful) men: he seeth wickedness also; will he not then consider it? 

For vain (empty-headed) man would be wise, though man be born like a wild ass’s colt (when a wild donkey’s colt is born a man). If thou prepare thine heart, and stretch forth thine hands toward him; If iniquity be in thine hand, put it far away, and let not wickedness dwell in thy tabernacles (tents). 

For then shalt thou lift up thy face without spot; yea, thou shalt be steadfast, and shall not fear. Because thou shalt forget thy misery, and remember it as waters that pass away. And thine age (life) shall be clearer (brighter) than the noonday; thou shalt shine forth, thou shalt be as the morning.’ (Job 11:10-17) 

Yes my brethren, though Zophar was wrongly ragging on Job, believing that some hidden, serious sin caused his tribulations, his advice was right on. An omniscient God could clearly see man’s sin, and if he confesses and repents, the Lord will forgive Him and make his life better. 

Now that is what we need to do in this ungodly world; bring about confession and repentance, so that our beautiful world can be lifted up, be without spot and without fear. That’s the wisdom of the age! Much LOVE!

…only Christ’s LOVE Revolution can save our sinking world…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 July 2017 Philippians 1:6

Philippians 1:6.   Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.

Ah friends, it’s the best day of the week – Sunday –the Sabbath of the Lord! That means it’s time for worship and praise and thanksgiving and fellowship, so that we can glorify our heavenly Father together and receive His endless LOVE, grace, mercy and forgiveness in a renewal of our spiritual strength and well-being! Wow! 

And what better way to begin our day than with a song of praise. So please sing with me, this old but highly treasured hymn, ‘Holy, Holy, Holy.’ Let’s raise the roof with our sincere and heartfelt praise, so that heaven stands up and takes notice. 

‘Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty! Early in the morning our song shall rise to thee; holy, holy, holy! merciful and mighty, God in three persons, blessed Trinity! Holy, holy, holy! All the saints adore thee, casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea; cherubim and seraphim falling down before thee, who wert and art and evermore shalt be. 

Holy, holy, holy! Though the darkness hide thee, though the eye made blind by sin thy glory may not see, only thou art holy; there is none beside thee, perfect in power, in love, and purity. Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty! All thy works shall praise thy name, in earth and sky and sea; holy, holy, holy! merciful and mighty, God in three persons, blessed Trinity!’ 

Yes my brethren, a most appropriate way to get us clearly tuned into our God, with no static buzzing around to distort the message, ready to hear His word and consequently have His Holy Spirit move in a godly manner within us. 

And from Gramps Schuller’s (Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional comes this prayer titled ‘MY WALK.’ I might have shared it before, but what’s to stop us from sharing it again eh? (smile)  

Please pray with me. ‘O God, I’m inspired, for you have just impressed this truth into my mind. The most powerful force in the world is a positive idea in the mind of a believer who is walking in your will! I now reach forth my life and say, “God, put my life into the centre of your will.” Amen.’

 Now I do hope we all mean that friends, because there’s really nothing as powerful as a positive idea in the mind of an obedient follower of Christ! And if we’re truly sincere, God will put just such an idea into our minds and cause us to successfully run with it, right to the finish line. 

Now most likely whatever God puts in our minds to do won’t be easy, but we know that He will ALWAYS assist us in any task we undertake on His behalf! 

No wonder Bruh Paul could write to the Philippians: ‘I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy. For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now.  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.1:3-6) 

Yes my fellow believers, Bruh Paul is letting the Philippians know that he continually thanks God for their help in spreading the good news of Christ, even from the very first day that they heard it, right up until the time of his writing. He was also grateful for their prayers and financial support. The church at Philippi was a strong one early on in its formation. Thus Bruh Paul could write the words of our Bit, confident that they would grow and mature under the Lord’s tutelage and guidance. 

And the scholars offer these explanations. ‘1:6. Will perform it is said “will finish it.” Paul is convinced that the work of grace that God began in the Philippians at conversion will be divinely continued until the day of Jesus Christ. That is, the Lord will keep working in these believers until Jesus returns to earth, at which point He will finish His work, bringing it to completion. 

This speaks of the Christian’s eternal security. For God had a purpose in view when He began His saving work in the Philippians, and that purpose will neither be abandoned nor unrealized.’ 

Now friends, doesn’t that just give us encouragement and reassurance, since it’s the same programme the Lord has in mind for each believer. His avowed desire and purpose is to conform us as closely as possible to His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and once He’s begun that process, He won’t stop until He takes us home or Christ returns to earth, whichever comes first. 

Please remember my Christian brethren that God is ever-faithful, and once He takes you under His comforting wings, He’ll never let anything untoward happen to you. In other words, we are secure in His everlasting LOVE, care and concern. 

And Bruh Paul ends this section with more reinforcement. ‘And this I pray, that your LOVE may abound yet more and more in knowledge and judgement (discernment): That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ. Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.’ (Phil.1:9-11) 

Oh my people, the same expectations have been set in place for us in these modern times. Nothing has really changed. God’s plan is still the same for all of us. 

And the scholars explain. 1:10. Things that are excellent means “things that really matter.” This refers to important issues. As the Philippians’ LOVE increases in knowledge and discernment (v.9), they will be able to accurately distinguish the vital and worthwhile things in life from those that are not. 

Contextually, the readers’ LOVE for Paul vexes them as they are anxious over his imprisonment. He wants them to perceive his imprisonment as being among “those things that really matter” because of the good that God will bring out of it. The purpose for such discrimination is that ye may be sincere (or, morally pure) and without offense till the day of Christ.’ 

And re ‘1:11. This verse could be translated, “Filled with the fruit that is righteousness, which comes through Jesus Christ for the purpose of glorifying and praising God.” The believer who is pure and without offense before God (v.10) has divinely developed in him a practical “righteousness” or daily moral life that measures up to God’s standards in character and conduct. The ultimate purpose for this “righteousness” is to glorify God.’ 

Ah friends, that says it all. So let’s ponder what we’ve said today and see if we’re measuring up to God’s standards, then sincerely ask Him to help us do better. That’s both common sense and eternal wisdom! Much LOVE!

…without exception…believers are expected to bear righteous fruit…for the purpose of glorifying Almighty God…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 June 2016 Psalm 68:3

Psalm 68:3.   But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice.

Oh friends, oh friends, the ole fella’s just gushing with excitement this morning because a new and glorious day has been born, which means that we have another day ahead of us to give much thanks and praise to our wonderful Creator! 

So let’s begin the praise and thanksgiving by singing this awesome song nuh. As one harmonious choir now: ‘From all who dwell below the skies, Let the Creator’s praise arise. Alleluia! Alleluia! Let the Redeemer’s name be sung, Through every land, in every tongue! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! 

In every land begin the song, To every land the strains belong. Alleluia! Alleluia! In cheerful sound let voices raise, To fill the earth with joyful praise; Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! 

Eternal are your mercies Lord! Eternal truth attends your word! Alleluia! Alleluia! Your praise shall sound from shore to shore! ‘Till suns shall rise and set no more! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!’ 

Yes my faithful brethren, the sounds of our thanks and praise ought to be raised to high heaven as often as possible because our God is such a wonderful Deity! And besides that, He just LOVES to hear us praising and adoring Him! It warms the cockles of His heavenly heart! (smile) 

And to prove His awesomeness, let’s now declare our Thursday Blessings with much vim and vigour, sincerity and sense of purpose. No other faith can do this, like we can. 

‘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 my people, a blessing is not a blessing until it’s been spoken, so we need to remember to continually bless our friends and families, so that they can enjoy the goodness and LOVING-kindness of our merciful and oh so gracious God! 

And all of that jives so nicely with our Bit taken from Psalm 68 – God has gone before His people. ‘But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice.’ 

Oh my faithful followers of Jesus Christ, that directive of Bruh David is one we should all heed with joyful hearts! For where is there another Deity like ours eh? There is NONE whatsoever my brethren! 

And as we keep saying Christians should be the happiest people on planet earth because we have such a wonderful faith, such a wonderful Lord and Saviour, and we serve such a magnificent and magnanimous God! 

Oh, I know that our circumstances don’t always allow us, or encourage us to give such thanks and praise, but the whole point of the matter is that when we do, we feel better inside, our spirits are lifted and we can handle our situations better, because we are in the very presence of our God, who likes nothing better than hearing us glorifying Him in song. 

Now hear how Bruh David continues after our Bit. ‘Sing unto God, sing praises to his name: extol (praise) him that rideth upon the heavens by his name JAH, and rejoice before him. A father of the fatherless, and a judge (defender) of the widows, is God in his holy habitation. 

God setteth the solitary (lonely) in families: he bringeth out those which are bound with chains (causes them to prosper): but the rebellious dwell in a dry land.’ (Ps.68:4-6) 

Oh friends, right there is sufficient cause to praise God’s holy name! And that doesn’t even include all the other stuff He has done, is doing and will do for us! 

Now let’s check out a couple more instances where praise and thanks are offered up to heaven. Listen to this excerpt from the song of Deborah and Barak when the Israelites overcame their superior enemies. 

‘Praise ye the Lord for the avenging of Israel, when the people willingly offered themselves (volunteered). Hear, O ye kings; give ear, O ye princes; I, even I, will sing unto the Lord; I will sing praise to the Lord God of Israel.’ (Judg. 5:2-3) 

And we’ll end with this exhortation from Psalm 97 – The Lord is far above all gods. ‘Ye that LOVE the Lord, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked. Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart. 

Rejoice in the Lord, ye righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness (for the memory of his holy name).’ (Ps.97:10-12) 

Oh my brethren, I do hope that today, as we go about the Lord’s business, that thanks and praise will continually be in our thoughts and mouths and reverberate in our souls and bodies, all to the glory of our magnificent and majestic God! Much LOVE!

…a Christian who isn’t joyful…is surely lacking in faith…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 April 2016 James 1:25

James 1:25.   But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed (in what he does).

Aye mih breddren, it’s Tuesday; Monday has been relegated to the annals of History, so let’s not procrastinate and put off nuh, but use this present day to do what needs doing, above all, glorifying our wonderful, amazing, awesome God! Yes friends, for that’s the number One reason we were so wonderfully made. 

And I believe we can truly say that spring has finally sprung in my area, because for the second consecutive day, there’s a soft rain falling gently on the land, the grass is green, and there are buds on the branches of the trees. 

And more importantly, a few trees are even brave and bold enough to have some leaves already budding out. Oh glory to God, that winter has finally gone back to wherever it came from – for at least another few months! (smile) 

So since our great God is still on His throne, and everything is right in our world, let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with true sincerity and godly enthusiasm nuh. 

All together now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen.’ 

Oh my people, my people, what beautiful words of encouragement and assurance! When we sincerely believe that mantra, then we have absolutely nothing to worry about. Oh, there will be trials and tribulations, Jesus promised that, but deep down we will be assured that they will be properly taken care of in God’s time and in His own particular way. That’s the beauty of our faith! 

So please, let’s not allow the wily enemy to deceive us into thinking otherwise. As I said last week, using Cousin Bobby’s (Robert Schuler 111) testimony, if you’re not sure, not convinced, then please repeat the mantra everyday, several times a day, until you can feel truly assured in your soul. 

Now let’s turn to our Bit, which I hope to conclude today – no promises though. (smile) ‘But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed (in what he does). And that’s a sincere promise from our ever-faithful God! 

And as we’ve been doing, we’ll continue looking at the references the scholars gave about the perfect law of liberty. ‘It is a law of liberty because it frees from the principles of sin and death.’ 

And today’s reference comes from Galatians, where Bruh Paul gives forth on Living by faith. ‘Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.’ (Gal.5:1) 

And the scholars explain that verse thus: ‘5:1. The verse could be rendered: “For freedom Christ freed us. Therefore stand fast and do not again be subject to a yoke of bondage.” The “freedom” in view is freedom from the law, here called “a yoke of bondage.” Paul wants the Galatians to “stand fast,” that is, retain their spiritual freedom.’ 

And I’m asking us today to do the same thing my fellow believers: let’s not fall back, lapse back into the bondage of the law, but continue truthfully and vibrantly in the spiritual freedom that Christ died for us to have. 

And later on in that same chapter, Bruh Paul further advises the Galatians: ‘For brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by LOVE serve one another.’ (Gal.5:13) 

And the scholars explain thus: ‘5:13. Having shown freedom from the law to be proper protection from legalism (vv.1-12), Paul now demonstrates it to be a proper antidote against unrestrained license to sin (vv.13-26). 

Believers are not to abuse their liberty from the law for an occasion (opportunity) to the flesh (sinful nature). That is, don’t think freedom from the law means you can indulge in sin; it means instead that you are free to serve God by serving one another.’ 

Now that’s something we all seriously have to work on friends, since many of us falsely believe that because of that very freedom, plus the overwhelming forgiveness and mercy of our magnanimous God, we have a licence to willfully sin. 

But that’s the furthest thing from the truth my brethren. When we truly come to God and truly have Him ensconced in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls, then because of the great LOVE we bear Him, willfully falling to sin and temptation should not even enter our consciousness. It ought to make us strive not to sin. 

And the last part of the explanation re the law of liberty is: ‘James also describes it as the royal law (2:8) for it is the law of the messianic King.’ 

And pertaining to that, James 2:8 says: ‘If ye fulfill the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well. But if ye have respect to persons (show partiality), ye commit sin, and are convinced (convicted) of the law as a transgressor.’ (James 2:8-9) I felt that last verse was necessary to show the true context of verse 8. 

And that brings us to Galatians again, where Bruh Paul is talking about applications of new principles. ‘Brethren, if a man be overtaken (caught) in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of meekness (gentleness), considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.’  (Gal.6:1-2) 

Yeh friends, if we deliberately overstep those divine boundaries and fall into sin, those of us who walk by the Spirit, whose life shows the fruit of the Spirit, ought to talk to the Christian believer who has gone astray and try to bring them back to their normal moral condition. 

And we need to do it all in LOVE, handle it delicately, while all the time making sure that we aren’t caught up in the same carnality, which is so easy to do. 

And per verse 2, the scholars explain: ‘6:2. Contextually, the burdens are the moral faults of verse 1, but can have wider application to other kinds of burdens. The law of Christ is the sum of all Jesus’ teachings and desires; it is Christianity itself.’ 

And here endeth the lesson for today friends. (smile) We have indeed concluded the last message in the perfect law of liberty series. I do hope that we now have a much better understanding of what it means and how it applies to us, both as individuals and as the church, the body of Christ. 

Please, let’s put all that we have learned into proper use nuh, so that we can advance the gospel of Christ, which is our bounden duty as believers. Much LOVE!

…Christianity…the law of Christ…is not as burdensome as legalism…the law of man… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 December 2015 Isaiah 9:2

Isaiah 9:2.  The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.

  MERRY  CHRISTMAS !

Oh my fellow believers, friends, neighbours and the great unwashed, Jesus Christ is born! Glory Hallelujah! At long last the day for which we’ve waited is here, so to show our appreciation and gratitude let’s offer up some sacrificial praise and thanksgiving nuh! 

Please sing with me: ‘Joy to the world! The Lord is come; Let earth receive her king; Let every heart prepare him room, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven, and heaven, and nature sing. 

Joy to the earth! The savior reigns; Let men their songs employ; While fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat, repeat the sounding joy. 

No more let sins and sorrows grow, Nor thorns infest the ground; He comes to make his blessings flow Far as the curse is found, Far as the curse is found, Far as, far as, the curse is found. 

He rules the world with truth and grace, And makes the nations prove The glories of his righteousness, And wonders of his LOVE, And wonders of his LOVE, And wonders, wonders, of his LOVE.’ 

Yes my brethren, our Lord and Saviour was born some two thousand years ago in the dirty and ‘dingy’ stable with the all the animals and their funky smell, but that didn’t bother Him one iota. And a lot of people wonder if God is so omnipotent and otherwise why He allowed His blessed son to be born in such lowly and humble surroundings. 

Well Friends, that’s just because God wanted to show that Christ came to save the lowly, the lost, the needy, not the righteous and wealthy. Plus He also likes to ‘confuffle’ mankind by using the lowly and poor when others expect Him to use the wise and wealthy. 

But be that as it may, today is Christ’s birthday and it is being celebrated all around the world with joy and gladness and good tidings to one and all. Even those who are being relentlessly persecuted are celebrating, because their faith is strong enough to withstand the persecution, for it’s based on the wonderful and faithful promises of Jesus! Glory to God my people! 

And now turning to our Bit: ‘The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my believing brethren? It certainly is, because Jesus is the LIGHT of this dark world, and when He was born His healing and comforting and saving light was let loose on the darkness and the people rejoiced, because they could then see their way clear by the brilliant LIGHT that Jesus brought to planet earth. 

Now here is why our God is so great, especially when coming to promises. The prophet Isaiah foretold centuries before Christ’s birth this wonderful news that the people faithfully held on to for so long. 

‘For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. 

Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgement and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord will perform this.’ (Is.9:6-7) 

And though it took many centuries for this to happen, in God’s time, His zeal did perform the promise through the miraculous birth of Jesus through the Virgin Mary. 

Yesterday we saw how Mary’s faith was great, as she acceded to the Lord’s purpose in her life without any hesitation. Oh friends, are we doing the same eh? Are we getting in agreement with God’s plan for our life without too much hassle and doubt and anxiety? I surely do hope so, because that’s when the Lord performs His miracles in our lives and raises us up. 

Now let’s turn to Luke and get his account of Jesus’ birth. ‘And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in their field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon (stood before) them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore (greatly) afraid. 

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you: 

Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes (cloths), lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace, good will toward men.’ (Luke 2:8-14) 

Yes Friends, that is what Jesus came to earth to bring; peace and good will to all mankind. Let’s never forget that because it’s one of the basic tenets of our faith. 

And time and space has run out on us, but we all know how the shepherds ran to where Jesus lay and found Him just as the angels had declared, then they spread the good news all around the area, praising and glorifying God. (Luke 2:15-20) 

Now that’s what we ought to do today and everyday my people. Anyway, today is Friday, and I believe it is one day when we badly need our Friday Chant to keep us in line, since the celebration of Christ’s birth is so phenomenal. So let’s go home chanting it with sincerity and enthusiasm 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.’ 

And please remember Granny’s plea, that drunk or sober we must mind our business. That is ever so important in these times of celebration.  Merry Christmas my brothers and sisters in Christ! Much LOVE!

…Christmas…the time when Christ’s light…first shone in a darkened world… 

P.S.  The Bit’s early today friends, so no complaints. (smile) That’s because I wrote it right after I came from the 11 0’clock service at church. This way I can do my own celebrations without having to worry about waking up to write it. Oh there is indeed method to my madness! (smile) And though it’s somewhat long, I think it’s good. Hope you do too. Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 October 2014 Psalm 118:28.

Psalm 118:28. Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee.

Oh Friends, it’s a brand new day! Glory Hallelujah! A brand new day filled with new mercies, new blessings, and new forgiveness! Wow! And to make matters even better, we’re alive to enjoy it all! What a most wonderful Deity we serve and worship my people: the ONE and ONLY TRUE LIVING God!
 
So let’s give Him some thanks and praise, as we loudly and boldly proclaim these wise words of the psalmist in thanksgiving for the Lord’s salvation. Please declare with me: ‘This is the day which the Lord hath made; we WILL rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24)
 
Yes my people, let’s enjoy the goodness and LOVING-kindness of our magnificent and magnanimous God today and everyday, as long as the breath of life is flowing through our mortal bodies. That is simply wisdom and common sense, for if He grants us all those things, we’d indeed be foolish not to enjoy them.
 
And believe me, for whatever reason(s), some of us are indeed foolish enough not to enjoy the blessings of God, thinking it wrong and sinful to enjoy what the Lord has provided. Nothing could be further from the truth my people!
 
Why would the Lord provide all that wonderful stuff if He didn’t intend for us to enjoy it eh? And why would Jesus, our great Lord and Saviour declare that He had come to earth, so that we could have life, and have it more abundantly eh, if He didn’t mean for us to be joyful, even in the rough times? (John 10:10)
 
So Friends, I implore us to stop having these foolish ideas and thoughts about enjoying life nuh. We’re supposed to have heaven right here on earth; standing steadfast and strong while doing God’s work – and enjoying it too, not living beggarly and miserable.
 
And believe me again, if we are truly doing God’s work, with the peace of mind that He provides, then we will truly enjoy this earthly life, regardless of the many dangers, disappointments and troubles with which it is fraught. End of sermon! (smile)
 
Ah mih breddren, it never ceases to amaze and amuse me how the Holy Spirit will give me a starting idea, then let me run with it, or rather, help to let it flow smoothly! I would therefore be wrong, foolish and disobedient, if I didn’t enjoy and appreciate that blessing.
 
And you know there’s no greater tragedy for a writer than writer’s block! Thankfully, the Lord doesn’t allow me to suffer from it too often and for too long. Then I’d really be up heifer dust creek. (smile)
 
And Friends, our Bit this morning comes from that same Psalm 118, where the psalmist is giving thanks for the Lord’s salvation. And it’s a rather appropriate Bit too; highlighting what our behaviour ought to be, as it boldly and rightly declares: ‘Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee.’
 
Oh Friends, what words of joy, LOVE, obedience and truth! If we do that sincerely, on a continuous basis, then our lives will be forever enriched and blessed!
 
And it’s mostly because we’re not fully and sincerely embracing that bit of gospel truth that our lives and our world are in such a disastrous mess. We are trying desperately to remove God from all aspects of our society, but that’s a fool’s wisdom my people.
 
We claim to have been redeemed by the spilled blood of Christ, through His sacrificial death on the cross at Calvary, so why aren’t we more thankful and moving closer to Him eh, instead of being obnoxious, ungrateful and trying to distance ourselves from Him?
 
If we truly believe that we are indisputably redeemed, then we ought to be singing praises like redeemed people; praises like Isaiah’s declaration: ‘O Lord, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.’ (Is.25:1)
 
Yes Friends, those are the kinds of words that ought to be emanating from our hearts, souls and mouths. Not the simpleton, worldly foolishness that we’re now spewing forth in this oh so talkative age, when we really have nothing much to talk about because our lives are dull, bland and miserable.
 
As 3 Canal would say, we have no real business, so we keep on minding the business of others, glorifying man with his Achilles heel, putting him on a flimsy pedestal instead of Almighty God. Oh my brethren, it’s high time we got some business of our own, by turning to our mighty God for help, and start glorifying Him, rather than mortal, worthless, fickle, feckless, untrustworthy man!
 
We should be singing the Lord’s praises like His obedient servant Moses did: ‘The Lord is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him a habitation (praise Him); my father’s God, and I will exalt him.’ (Ex.15:2)
 
And we’ll end with more worthy words of praise, this time from Bruh David, another of God’s obedient servants. And just as I was about to write those last few words in my rough draft, the lights flickered out for a couple seconds.
 
Chuh! It’s a good thing I wasn’t on the computer, then I might have lost some stuff and be sorely disappointed. Consequently, I’ll take it as a positive sign, (smile) and continue in God’s direction. Therefore, please declare with me, my Friends and fellow believers, these words of thanksgiving for deliverance, as Bruh David saw it.
 
‘I will LOVE thee, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength (lit. my rock), in whom I will trust; my buckler (shield), and the horn (strength) of my salvation, and my high tower (stronghold). I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.’ (Ps.18:1-3)
 
Now that’s wisdom from on high, my brethren! So let’s go out today and put it into practice, put it to the test nuh; praise and magnify our most worthy God, and see if our lives don’t improve substantially. Much LOVE!
 
…a believer’s faith is only as strong as…the sincere thanksgiving in his heart…

 

 

Previous Older Entries