Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 September 2018 Isaiah 43:2.

Isaiah 43:2,    When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned, neither shall the flame kindle upon (scorch) thee.

 

Awright my faithful brethren, let’s walk one more time, one more time to the Lord’s sanctuary! It’s Sunday and our presence is required in the house of our great God, to worship and give Him awesome praise, exalt His holy name with other believers, hear His Word and receive His confidence and assurance that He will always be with us, never leave nor forsake us. 

No other Deity has ever made the promises our God has, because they’re not really interested in their followers, and in any case they don’t have the omnipotence to keep such promises. But our heavenly Father sincerely cares about and LOVES us so much that He gave His only Son as a sacrifice for us. Glory to God! And all He expects from us in return is obeisance and obedience. 

And as always, to soften up our hard hearts, we’ll begin with a song of praise. Today’s song is one written by Don Moen, once the music director for the Hour of Power television ministry, but now retired. I believe the story behind this song is one late night in the mid 1980’s Don was awakened by the incessant ringing of the phone. On answering it, he was shocked to hear the news that His brother in-law and his sister had met in an accident with their four children, and one of the boys had died. 

In his grief and sorrow, Don cried out to God for help, and these are the words he found solace in, as he put them to music in the song, ‘God will make a way.’ So let’s raise our voices in all sincerity and truth, declaring the words of Don’s song with heartfelt thanks. 

In soulful unison now: (‘God will make a way Where there seems to be no way He works in ways we cannot see He will make a way for me. He will be my guide Hold me closely to His side With LOVE and strength for each new day He will make a way, He will make a way.) (Repeat) 

By a roadway in the wilderness, He’ll lead me And rivers in the desert will I see Heaven and Earth will fade but His Word will remain And He will do something new today. Oh, God will make a way where there seems to be no way He works in ways we cannot see He will make a way for me.’ 

And that’s the awesome truth my brethren as all of us sincere believers can testify, because at some stage in our walk with Almighty God, He has made a way for each of us, when there absolutely seemed to be no way! Praise his holy name my people! Give Him enormous thanks for being the wonderful Deity He is! 

And if you don’t believe me, listen to this mind boggling promise of our Bit nuh. ‘When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned, neither shall the flame kindle upon (scorch) thee.’ 

And there are instances where He kept all those promises: When the Israelites fled bondage in Egypt and came to the Red Sea, with Pharaoh and his army hot on their heels, it seemed like they were destined to either drown or be slaughtered by their enemy. But their omnipotent God made a way for them by simply parting the Red Sea and giving them dry land to cross over upon. And it was the mighty Egyptians who drowned that day. (Ex.14:21-31) 

Likewise, when they crossed the Jordan River to go into the Promised Land, the Lord parted the river for them to walk across on dry land once more. (Josh. 4) And if yuh think His talk about the fire scene was just idle talk, then read Daniel 3: 8-30, where the story of the three Hebrew young men, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego is told. 

 They refused to bow to a golden image made by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon and were thrown into a furnace of fire heated seven times hotter than normal. Hn! It consumed the men who threw them in, but those faithful young men came out without a scorch, not even smelling of smoke! 

Wow mih breddren! As I rave every day: what a wonderful and powerful God we serve and worship! Give Him the praise and thanks He so rightfully deserves nuh! And the hordes of foolish people, believing Lucifer’s lies that we ought to get rid of God from our society? Deh mad yes! We ought to be begging Him to come back, not go away! 

And if yuh think all of that was in the now irrelevant Old Testament, then listen to Bruh Paul writing to the church at Corinth. ‘There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear (endure) it.’ (1 Cor.10:13) 

Yes friends, even when the tempter comes with His best shot, our ever-faithful God will find a way for us to escape the temptation entirely, or walk through it with us, helping us to endure it. But He will NEVER allow us to handle more than we can bear! That’s His promise! 

And even more compelling are these words of assurance from Bruh Paul to the Roman church. ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.’ (Rom.8:28)

Oh my people, our wonderful God is working out ALL things for good, but we who LOVE Him appreciate that fact more than others because we LOVE Him no matter what! Like Shadrach and them told King Neb, we know the Lord can save us from the fire, but whether He chooses to save us or not, we not bowing to yuh foolish lifeless golden idol! And that is that! You could do whatever yuh want now! 

Oh my fellow followers of Jesus, that is the kind of salt and belly and backbone that we need to have in these oh so evil and ungodly times!  For Jesus’ sake, let’s get our act together and be solid nuh. We way too wishy-washy and compromising with the world! Much LOVE!

…remember…we must be in the world…but showing Jesus’ glowing colours…not be of the world…in the dark and evil likeness of Beelzebub…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 September 2018 John 10:11.

John 10:11. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
 

Ah friends, sorry for the Bit’s lateness, but I went to bed late, got up late, and had a few things to do before I began writing. But the good news is, here I am at last! Glory! Glory! (smile) 

 Oh isn’t it just great to be alive? To be able to laugh and sing, run and jump, (not me… just yet), and even cry once in a while? It surely is, especially when we are living with and working for our wonderful Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ! Oh praise His holy name my faithful brethren; exalt the name that’s above EVERY other name, to whom ALL knees MUST eventually bow! 

Yeh, that’s our Messiah, our Prince of Peace, our heavenly Advocate, Our Burden Bearer, Our Comforter, in fact our Be All and End All, our EVERYTHING! Wow! Are we ever so blessed to have a Leader of such awesome proportions! Let’s give Him the thanks and praise He deserves…and all day long at that! 

Yeh, the ole fella’s in a joyful, exclamatory mood this morning! And why not eh? I just got some most excellent news; news that my heart problems have improved…Glory to God! And I’m now medically fit to travel…Oh mih brethren, that’s the best news ever! 

It’s been almost three years that I’ve been parked up here without the ability to get on an iron bird. But yuh know what, as I keep saying our God is ever so faithful, because many a day I’ve lain in my bed and looked through my window at the iron birds coming and going to and from the nearby airport, wondering when I’d be able to get on one. 

And the Good Lord has always quieted my heart by promising that one day, in the not too distant future, He will lift the medical limitations and free me from this onerous bondage… And now He has done just as He has promised! Bless His holy name! So in light of that extraordinary faithfulness, why wouldn’t I just offer up my whole heart and soul, thanks and praise to Him eh? No reason whatsoever my people! 

But enough of my excitement…let’s get on with the Bit. It’s Saturday, that means we need to look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week. And we do have a whole slew of then this week, all dealing with change. And we will begin with this one: ‘If you don’t like change, you will like irrelevance even less.’ 

I’m not so sure about that nuh, because the human animal is so eccentric and confusing, and dislikes change so much, that a lot of us will probably prefer to be irrelevant rather than to change. That leads us to this quote: ‘The price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change.’ 

Now that I definitely disagree with! In my many years and much trial and testing on God’s earth, I’ve usually found that the price of change is usually much higher than the price of standing stationary. In particular the effort that one has to put out to make whatever change is necessary. That’s why so many people just stay the same way in the same place. 

That’s why this next quote is the living truth! ‘Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts.’ Now that’s exactly why so many of us resist change, even change that’s obviously in our best interest! Change just doesn’t come easy. And this one mirrors the truth of the last. ‘The world hates change, yet it is the only thing that has brought progress.’ And so it has my brethren… though not always for the better! 

That brings us to the last quote: ‘I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better.’ And isn’t that that the undeniable truth people? Unless our world changes, and drastically too, and also towards Jesus, until we stop trying to drive God out of our society and instead, embrace Him with all our hearts, souls, bodies and minds, our world will just continue sinking inexorably, relentlessly into the muck and mire of Lucifer’s evil empire. 

And that is not what our Saviour came to earth and suffered so much for. That’s definitely not why He suffered such pain and humiliation and eventually gave up His sinless life on that wooden cross at Calvary. If He wanted us to become part and parcel of Lucifer’s evil empire, He would have just remained in His cozy corner in heaven enjoying all the exotic delights provided by His Father. But He sacrificially gave all of that up to come and save our sinful souls. 

Remember friends, Lucifer is the master of thievery, lies and deception, an evil genius in leading mankind astray. Just look at how he deceived Eve in the Garden of Eden, and he’s still doing it to us to this day. However Jesus declared, and proved it too: ‘The thief cometh not, but (except) for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.’ (John 10:10-11) 

And there is absolutely no doubt that that’s what Jesus did on the cross at Calvary; give His sinless, holy life on behalf of our abominable sinful souls, so that the Father could justifiably forgive us and reconcile us to Himself. So why are we still foolishly running behind Lucifer and his evil, lustful, carnal, ungodly way of life eh? A way of life that will only lead to eternal separation from our heavenly Father; the worst fate that can ever befall a human soul! 

I don’t know the answer to that nuh friends, but I am surely trying my best to stay away from that end result…and I sincerely hope that you are trying to do the same, because that’s the ultimate in wisdom! Much LOVE!

…as for me and mine…we will definitely follow Jesus…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 May 2018 Matthew 9:29.

Matthew 9:29.    According to your faith be it unto you.

Well friends, it’s the big day, Sunday, the time we make our way to the Lord’s sanctuary to fellowship and worship and receive reassurance and confidence in our faith walk.  Unfortunately I couldn’t make it today because of my illness, but my Pastor, Fr. Jeff has promised to come and visit and give me communion after church. So I’m still in the loop. (smile) 

Anyway, as usual, let’s get prepared to hear the word, soften our hearts, by offering up some praise and worship to heaven. And today we’ll offer up that old spiritual song from the movie ‘Student Prince,’ made famous by Mario Lanza. It’s called ‘I’ll walk with God,’ and is such a beautiful way of reaffirming our faith, in this most appropriate time of spring rebirth and a troubled world. 

Let’s sing my brethren, with sincere hearts and strong lungs. ‘I’ll walk with God from this day on. His helping hand I’ll lean upon. This is my prayer, my humble plea, May the Lord be ever with me. There is no death, tho’ eyes grow dim. There is no fear when I’m near to Him. I’ll lean on Him forever And He’ll forsake me never. 

He will not fail me As long as my faith is strong, Whatever road I may walk along. I’ll walk with God, I’ll take His hand. I’ll talk with God, He’ll understand. I’ll pray to Him, each day to Him And He’ll hear the words that I say. His hand will guide my throne and rod And I’ll never walk alone While I walk with God.’ 

And is all of that ever so true my people! If we walk faithfully with God, He’ll look after us. That’s his promise! And He doesn’t ever break promises. I particularly like that last line, about I’ll never walk alone, while I walk with Him. Glory be people! What an awesome statement of truth! 

But first, before all of the above can happen, we need to have the faith to submit, to completely surrender our lives to Him, because God wants to be involved in EVERY aspect of our lives. He can’t be included in some things and not in others. And that’s where the problems come in. We either don’t have faith, or we suffer from weak faith, but a sincere and successful walk with God requires strong faith. 

Oh I know that faith is a process, a continuum along which we grow, from glory to glory, but we have to make the solid, and conscious commitment to do it. We can’t be wishy- washy and stop, or faint as soon as problems arise, because its those same problems that cause our faith to grow. Yeh friends, unfortunately faith only grows by experiencing God’s LOVE, mercy and favour at work in our lives, especially during the rough periods. 

And to show that I know what I’m talking about (smile) listen to this testimony. It’s been a year and half since I’ve been diagnosed with head and heart problems, and in the natural, you’d expect them to be fixed much sooner than they have been. 

Oh, only the head problem has been fixed so far, and that just last week, the heart still remains an enigma. I went into the hospital a month ago to fix the heart problem, but some other thing cropped up and they changed their minds. I’m still waiting to hear from them. 

But what amazes me is that everybody claimed I was so sick, but yet they had me traipsing from hospital to doctor to heart clinic and back again, taking all different kinds of medication and nothing was getting done. Now I could have given up hope and said, ‘Chuh! Forget all this nonsense yes!’ 

But I didn’t, because I’ve been walking with God long enough now to understand that He will keep His promise to work everything out for our good, but in His own time. That’s the cut-tail part about walking with God; in His own time. And unfortunately, His time is seldom our time. He uses these opportunities to grow our faith. 

So if you’re going through some tough and dark times, please, please don’t give up or lose faith. The Lord WILL see you through eventually. He’s just checking to see if you’re truly into Him, as you claim. It isn’t easy people, but our God is faithful, that much I can tell you for sure. And if He sees that you’re willing to take up your cross and walk with Him, without a doubt, He’ll help you to carry it, just like He sent Simon the Cyrene, to help Jesus carry His on that fateful day. (smile) 

He will NEVER leave you in the lurch. And until you sincerely believe that, your faith won’t grow. If you want to work for God, you better had be prepared to suffer stuff, because he doesn’t want people without the necessary experiencing telling His people a whole set of Anansi stories, on subjects they know nothing about. That’s why, most of the stuff I tell you, I can vouch for it from personal experience. 

And I have to chuckle here, because this was never meant to be a personal testimony, but that’s what the Lord apparently wanted. And who am I to say him nay eh? (smile) 

And we’ll end with this most pertinent scripture, when two blind men came to Jesus to receive their sight. ‘And when he was come into the house, the blind men came to him: and Jesus saith unto them, Believe ye that I am able to do this? They said unto him, Yea, Lord. Then touched he their eyes, saying, According to your faith be it unto you.’ (Matt.9:28-29) 

Yes friends, according to the level of our faith, the Lord will work in our lives. It’s as simple as that. He’ll meet us at whatever point we are, but we have to first believe that He can do what He’s promised. That’s what faith is all about. Much LOVE!

…faith is believing without seeing…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 November 2017 Jeremiah 13:15.

Jeremiah 13:15.   Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the Lord hath spoken.

Add another one friends! Yes, add another blessed day to your earthy life. The Lord’s just overwhelming in His generosity towards us, for which we ought to be thankful. And it’s Friday too, thus the workingman is singing his song. 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday… And am I ever ready for the weekend! The waters (alcoholic beverages) going to flow like water…the food’s going to be so plentiful that it’ll just blow yuh mind… and the music loud and heavy, with the bass line just thumping through yuh heart… Bredder! It going to be a great weekend of simply partying….party, party, party! Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Ah mih people, I don’t know about you all nuh, but I simply cannot handle that much partying…and I definitely don’t want that bass line thumping through my chest. I’ve felt it already, and it’s not a pleasant sensation. 

On the serious side though, all of that is just too much. Where is our Maker in all of it eh? Shouldn’t we find some time for Him in all the ‘kerfuffle’ of the weekend? Surely we should! 

What about resting and getting ourselves ready to go back out next week and fight the good fight eh? None of that is contained in the workingman’s song, but there certainly is need for it, if we are to live well-balanced, godly lives. 

That’s why our Friday Chant is a much better tribute to the weekend. So let’s sing it with much gusto now nuh. ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

That’s much more realistic and sensible and doesn’t go overboard in any one direction, but keeps us balanced in God’s sensibilities. And it brings us to our Bit for today: ‘Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the Lord hath spoken.’  

And yuh know what friends, until just now, I had no idea what the Bit would be. But as usual, I asked for guidance and then opened the Good Book… And lo and behold it opened unto the book of Jeremiah, and those were the first words that caught my eye. 

Yuh see how our God is faithful! And today He didn’t even have me searching for long. (smile) Some days He does though. So, as I keep saying, He won’t ask you to do something without giving you the wherewithal to do it. 

And in this particular case, though Jeremiah was having problems communicating with his people Israel, the Lord was still putting immortal words in his mouth. This section deals with Israel being like a drunken sailor come ashore; like the workingman above, with sin and virulent vice and ungodliness rampant in the nation. 

Therefore Jeremiah is crying out to his people, the warning words of their God. ‘Give glory to the Lord your God, before he cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and while ye look for light, he turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness.’ (Jer.13:16) 

Oh my people, I believe the Lord is giving us the same warning today, because there’s no doubt that our world is as sinful, ungodly and licentious as that of Israel back then. I’ll even wager that we are worse than them. And if the Bible is our Guide Book for earthly living, then we ought to pay careful attention to such words of warning anytime our world parallels those gone before. 

And moreover, I believe that all the natural and man-made disasters that have been recently befalling our world are also warning signs from God. We can sit down and debate and contemplate all we want, but the truth of the matter is that Almighty God exists, and He does not cotton to sin in any society in His universe. 

And eventually, there comes a time, after giving that society time to repent and move away from their sinfulness, that He unleashes His awesome wrath on selfsame society, and either brings them to heel, or wipes them out completely. 

We just have to go back through history to see the many societies which became powerful and sinful, and not worshipping Holy God, that eventually became extinct. Some of them were so violently and rapidly wiped off the map, that we have very little information or artifacts from their ascendancy here on earth. 

Oh my people, all I’m saying is that it’s better to be safe than sorry. Let’s take in front before in front takes us nuh. Let’s take God’s warnings seriously and change our sinful ways, before He obliterates us in His anger. 

As the psalmist recommends in Psalm 96 – A call to praise God: Let’s ‘Give (ascribe) unto the Lord, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the Lord glory and strength. Give (ascribe) unto the Lord the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come into his courts. 

O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness: fear (tremble) before him, all the earth. Say among the heathen (gentiles) that the Lord reigneth: the world also shall be (is firmly) established that it shall not be moved (shaken): he shall judge the people righteously.’ (Ps.96.7-10) 

All I can say friends, is that for our own sakes, we had better take that wise advice, otherwise…crapaud will eventually smoke we pipe! Much LOVE!

…a word of warning to the wise…is sufficient…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 October 2017 John 5:24.

John 5:24.   Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death into life.

Looks like it’s going to be a somewhat cloudy day outside, but on the inside…it’s surely going to be bright and sunny! 

Oh friends, how can life be anything else but sunny and wonderful eh, when we have the Holy Spirit of Jesus dwelling within us and riding shotgun on the outside? Every breath we take, and every move we make, He is right there in us and beside us. 

Oh glory to God for His Saviour Son Jesus Christ, and His holy comforter, Holy Spirit! With those two around us, we need NOTHING or NOBODY else to see us through both this earthly and the heavenly eternal life to come! Glory Hallelujah! 

That’s why Bruh Paul could confidently proclaim to the church at Philippi: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:19). 

The Philippians had sent Paul a gift of money and other treats, for which he was grateful, and in return he was assuring them that God would look kindly upon their generosity towards him. 

The scholars offer this explanation of that verse. ‘4:19. Because the Lord is aware of the sacrifice (v.18), the Philippians made in meeting Paul’s needs, God will surely supply all their need. God will meet their “need” (1) according to his riches, that is, in proportion to His unlimited resources; (2) in glory, that is, He will meet their need “gloriously” or “in a splendid manner”; (3) by Christ Jesus.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, once we live under the mighty umbrella of Almighty God, He will satisfy all our wants and needs. And long before Bruh Paul ever came around, Bruh David declared that truth in Psalm 37 – The true state of the wicked. 

‘I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed (descendants) begging bread. He is ever (always, all the day) merciful, and lendeth; and his seed (descendants) is blessed. 

Depart from evil and do good; and dwell for evermore. For the Lord LOVETH judgement (justice), and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.’ (Ps.37:25-28) 

And that is gospel truth my brethren! Our great God is very faithful and kind to those who serve and worship Him! I can personally testify to that, as I experience it EVERYDAY when I come to write the Bit. 

No way could I be doing it for almost eleven years without His wonderful help. So please don’t be foolishly led astray from under His all-encompassing LOVE. 

And if you don’t believe Bruh David, Bruh Paul, or me, then listen as Jesus, the Son of God, our Lord and Saviour, assures us of the very same thing in our Bit. 

‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death into life.’ 

Now what can be more joyous than that eh friends? Nothing really! To know that when we believe in Christ our lives will rise to such a higher level is the utmost in joy. As this quote I got from somewhere, so rightly tells us: ‘Joy is the most reliable evidence of God’s presence!’ 

Mama Mia! What indisputable truth and heavenly wisdom are contained in those few words! For it’s only when God truly reigns in our souls that we can ever experience true joy in this crazy, evil, strife-filled, sinful, godless world! 

And if after all of that, you still are not convinced of God’s goodness and great LOVE for mankind, then listen to these immortal words of Jesus; His raison d’être; His purpose, the reason why He came to be. 

‘For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.’ (John 3:16-17) 

And all God’s people declared a loud, proud and grateful: ‘Thank you yes Lord! Thank you for sending Jesus Christ to save us! We LOVE You, honour, worship and obey You. In Jesus’ name. Amen!’ 

Yes friends, no greater gift has ever been bestowed on mankind! And wonder of wonders, the gift is free and ever so easy to obtain! 

Hear Jesus again, as He reiterates the truth, efficacy and simplicity of our Bit: ‘He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.’ (John 3:18)  

Oh my people, my people, it’s oh so simple! For some though, just too simple. But God, in His eternal wisdom, knew that the best way to bring us to Him would be to make it as simple and easy as possible. 

All it takes is belief in Jesus Christ being the Son of God. Are you going to throw away that wonderful gift of salvation and eternal life with Jesus over simple belief? I certainly hope not. 

Now, for those of us who truly believe, let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, telling all the world, in sincerity and truth, who and whose we are. 

‘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 now it’s time to action those statements! Much LOVE!

…only as believers…SHARE the LOVE of Christ…will the world…ACCEPT the LOVE of Christ…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 July 2017 Matthew 6:13.

Matthew 6:13.   And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

Saturday, O Saturday! What have you got in store for me today eh? Will it be an easy day, just lazing around the house or going out and taking in the sights? Or will it be pure drudgery, like household chores and grocery shopping?  

Whatever kind of day you turn out to be though Saturday, I’m sure of this one thing; I’ll constantly have the company of Jesus with me, always by my side to provide a healthy chuckle or lend a helping hand when times get difficult. And we’re going to have good time, because this is the day the Lord has made, therefore we shall rejoice and be glad in it. Glory be, mih breddren! 

What a joy and a pleasure it is to have Jesus hanging out with us. Chuh! It couldn’t get any better than that nuh! And though I could go on singing the praises of Jesus all day, He requires me to look at some of the quotes that our friend Anselm blessed us with this week, as he aspires to inspire us to a better tomorrow. 

And this first quote is something many of us believers need to put into practice. ‘If you have a positive attitude and constantly strive to give your best effort, eventually you will overcome your immediate problems and find you are ready for greater challenges.’ Remember friends, it’s a good, Christian attitude and always putting your best foot forward that eventually brighten your way. 

This next quote should be obvious. ‘We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.’ Doing the same thing, or thinking the same way, won’t get different results. 

Now these next two, which I’ve made one, are certainly interesting. ‘Problems are only opportunities in work clothes. Problems are not stop signs, they are guidelines.’ And there’s lots of truth in them both, for problems usually show us opportunities, as well as guide us in sound decision making. 

And this last quote is a definite winner! ‘Do what you want to do. Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.’ 

Gospel truth that friends! But we need to do our do with a modicum of circumspection and with God always predominant in the mix. And I can give a personal testimony to that, because over the years I’ve gone out on a limb – am still doing it (smile) – and done some of my heart’s desires. 

Now they were expensive in terms of time, energy, money and emotional distress, but the Lord allowed me to experience them, and I don’t regret them, because they were all learning experiences. But I have to chuckle when I remember how the Lord eased me out of them all, when He considered it time to seriously get into His Word and write His Bit. God gives us dreams, my brethren, so that we can go after them and bring them to fruition and glorify His holy name. 

Okay, enough rambling, let’s turn to our Bit, everlasting words of our Lord and Saviour Jesus, as He taught the disciples, and by extension, us, how to pray. ‘And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.’ 

Now yesterday we saw from the scholars’ explanation that God doesn’t tempt us, though He allows some to come against us to test our faithfulness. James gives us this talk on the subject. ‘Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them the LOVE him.’ (James 1:12) 

And the scholars have some interesting opinions on that verse which give us better understanding. ‘1:12. Mankind understandably may look on tragedy as the curse of God, as Job’s friends did. Trials are, however, the means through which God’s blessings can come. One’s endurance in and victory over trials bring God’s blessings. Christians, therefore, are not instructed to seek avenues of escape. 

God desires that they mature in the situation rather than move from it. (cf. Rom.5:3-5; 1 Pet. 1:6-7). He does, however, promise to provide an escape if the testing becomes unbearable (1 Cor.10:13). God’s people need to meditate more on James 1:12 than 1 Cor.10:13. The reason for this, and why God allows trials in the lives of His people is revealed in the Mosaic Law: “That he might humble thee, and that he might prove thee, to do thee good at thy latter end” (Deut. 8:16).’  

Ah mih people, I know that doesn’t sit well with some of us, since we’d prefer to escape all the trials and tests. But then how will we ever grow in faith eh, if we keep running from difficulties, because it’s in difficult times that we grow and mature? 

And we’ll end with the verse from Bruh Paul to the Corinthians which the scholars believe makes us too soft and sappy. ‘There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear (endure) it.’ (1 Cor.10:13) 

And please note friends, the scholars tell us that the Greek term used in that verse refers more to a safe landing place for a ship, than for an actual escape. So the Lord’s plan is not for us to entirely escape the temptation, but help us to endure it and come out safely on the other side. 

Let’s therefore stop thinking about only escaping temptation, but more about fighting through them and coming out victorious on the other side, with God’s help of course.  That’s wisdom of eternal proportions! Much LOVE!

…only by fighting through trials…rather than escaping them…can a believer grow in faith…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 May 2017 1 Peter 5:8.

1 Peter 5:8.    Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.

Awright mih breddren, it’s Monday morning, so let’s be up and at ‘em nuh! 

‘Not today,’ claim our U.S. breddren. ‘Today is our Memorial Day Holiday, where we celebrate our fallen war heroes, so no work for us today. Praise the Lord!’ 

Yes friends, the shoe is on the other foot this week; last week we in Canada had Monday off for our Victoria Day Holiday, this week the U.S honours their patriots. But since it’s still a day of labour for most of us, we still need to sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn to get us going. So with as much verve and enthusiasm as we can muster, let’s sing. 

‘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 expected, the loudest and most off key voices were those who did not have to go to work today, and were already into the celebrations. But just remember, please listen to Granny’s advice. ‘Drunk or sober mind yuh business.’ We don’t want to go giving the evil one any foothold in our souls, for he is always lurking around, always on the prowl to find someone he can invade and cultivate. 

That’s why Peter, after telling us to humble ourselves before God, and to cast our care on him, because He cares for us, so strenuously warns in our Bit. ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.’ 

And that’s the gospel truth friends!  Remember when Satan came before God in Job? ‘And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.’ (Job 1:7) 

And the scholars offer this explanation: ‘1:7. From going to and from in the earth refers to Satan’s activity. Though he does not admit it here, Satan’s character clearly shows that his many travels are for evil purposes.  In 1 Peter 5:8. Satan is described as “your adversary the devil…seeking whom he may devour.” 

The activity of Satan indicates that he only has limited access to God. This account in Job emphasizes that God is sovereign over Satan. It also teaches that Satan is a finite being and therefore not omnipresent (can’t be everywhere at the same time). Nor can he touch God’s servants without God’s permission.’ 

Oh glory to God my people! That means Satan has no direct say over us, he can only invade our souls and spirits if God gives him permission, or of we foolishly allow him to enter therein. That’s why Peter continues after our Bit. ‘Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world.’ (1 Pet.5:9) 

Oh friends, I know it’s no great consolation to know that our brethren are experiencing the same temptation as us, but it just goes to show that we are not alone in being tempted, as Bruh Paul tells the Corinthians. ‘There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.’ (1 Cor.10:13) 

Now friends, we have to be careful and understand that God will not always make us escape the temptation, but will often allow us to go through it, to build our faith, but will eventually bring us out safely on the other side. Remember too, that even Jesus was tempted by Lucifer during His earthly sojourn, but He successfully rebuked Him, and we ought to try and do likewise. 

James also warns us. ‘Submit yourselves therefore to God: Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.’ (James 4:7) Yes my fellow believers, if we keep resisting Lucifer, he will eventually flee from us; not that he won’t come back and try to tempt us later on, (smile) because he can be very persistent. 

However, we’ll end with these reassuring words of Peter. ‘But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you. To him be the glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet.5:10-11)

What a blessed and faithful assurance my people. So let’s go out today strengthened in the Word of God, so that we can do His will. Much LOVE!

…the stronger our faith in Jesus…the more we are able to resist temptation…

 

 

 

 

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