Today’s Scrip-Bit   19 December 2022 John 13:34.

John 13:34.       A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another.

And then it was the Monday of Christmas week, and I hope that we are all excited to go to work this morning to meet and greet our friends and co-workers with a ‘Merry Christmas and a ‘Happy New Year!’ Yes my people, if the Monday before the birth of Christ can’t get us enthused about work, then I don’t know what will, especially when a lot of us don’t do much at this time of year anyway. (smile) What with the shopping, office parties and what not. 

But please, I implore us to take a moment every so often and remember the real reason for this Christmas celebratory season, which is unequivocally the birth of Christ, some two thousand years ago. Without that incarnate birth of the Son of God, there would be no holidays and/or celebrations now. So, as the old people would say, let’s give jack his jacket and Jim his gym boots. Yes, let’s give Jesus the recognition He so appropriately deserves, by remembering Him in our hearts and souls and sharing the miraculous and marvellous story of His birth with others. 

Let them know that Jesus’ birth was the first step in God’s plan of salvation, in His plan to bring us woeful sinners who had gone astray from Him, back into His fold. To redeem us, to make us righteous, to reconcile us back to Himself, so that we could be rightly called the children of God, and eventually enjoy eternal life in His company! Now nothing could be better than receiving God’s unmerited grace and favour my faithful brethren! 

And we who believe, are supposed to be His disciples, His ambassadors and spread His Word all over the earth. As he said in the Great Commission He assigned to us: ‘Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always.’ (Matt. 28:19-20) Now that is our basic assignment as believers. 

And I just LOVE how Bruh Paul explains the spreading of Christ’s gospel, as he talks about righteousness by faith in Christ to the church at Rome. Quoting the prophet Joel (Joel 2:32), he writes: For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things.’ (Rom. 10:13-15) 

And it’s ever so interesting how Bruh Paul uses his vast knowledge of the Old Testament scripture to make his New Testament points. In that last verse he quoted Isaiah 52:7 and Nahum 1:15. Now not everybody needs to be a preacher, but every believer needs to know and grow in the scriptures so that they can share their faith with others. For how can you truly share what you don’t know about eh? Neither do we have to breathe down people’s necks with the scriptures, but the Holy Spirit will lead and guide us when an opportunity arises for us to witness in Christ’s name. 

And there’s no better season to witness than at Christmas time, when everyone is joyful and receptive to good tidings. But friends, you know the best witness ever? Our everyday lifestyle. If we model it on that of Christ, then we won’t have to do any shouting from the rooftops, but others will just see the difference in us and want to live the life we’re living. 

And that’s just what I want us to go out and do this Monday morning, and all through this Christmas week: live a life that’s reflective of Christ; one filled with LOVE, kindness, compassion, mercy, goodness, gentleness and peace, while getting in some scriptures edgewise, as the Holy Spirit directs us! I don’t think we can do a better job of reminding the world of the reason for this holiday season than to live a rich and full life based on Jesus’ teachings. 

So, this Christmas season, let’s be the salt of the earth and light of the world as He desires. Not forgetting this most important directive: ‘A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:34-35) 

Oh my fellow saints, it’s remarkable that because of the birth of Christ, this is the season when even the unbelievers show LOVE and caring to each other, so why can’t we do the same eh? And I’ll leave us to ponder for a moment on that thought.   Selah. Now, let’s go to God in heartfelt prayer, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

As one voice: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now, it’s time to get our hearts and our motives right with God showing the world the LOVE of Christ! Much LOVE!

…only the birth of Jesus… could bring peace and tidings of good things…to our embittered and embattled world… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ    

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   15 November 2022 Hebrews 4:15.

Hebrews 4:15.          For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (sympathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (our weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

Oh my people it’s Tuesday! Yes, we’ve successfully kicked Monday, our old nemesis into the dustbin of history, and are beginning on a new journey with our great God, which promises exciting things and wonderful adventures. Wow! What an interesting God we serve, for we never know what a new day will bring, except for His new mercies and compassions of that day. That’s all we are ever sure of. However, because He’s faithfully promised in Hebrews 13:5, to never leave nor forsake us, we are confident that though He takes us through the wildest and most dangerous scenarios of life, He will bring us safely through them. 

Sometimes we’ll be anxious and scared to the point of trembling, but never will we doubt or give up on this most mighty and wonderful promise. ‘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) And all God’s people gave a grateful shout of: ‘Thank You Jesus for promising never to leave nor forsake us and to eventually work everything out for our good! We LOVE You and gloriously praise Your Holy Name! Amen!’ 

Ah mih faithful bredrin, it’s so awesome to know that when you awaken on a morning, alive and kicking, or even just barely alive (smile) that you have an amazing Deity looking out for you, regardless of what comes against you. It just fills you with an unimaginable joy and sense of purpose, knowing that you can go out and accomplish anything that’s in the Lord’s will. Listen to this promise of empowerment nuh, so graciously offered since the time of the prophet Isaiah. ‘No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgement thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of (from) me, saith the Lord.’ (Is. 54:17) 

Oh my my, what a glorious promise! But friends, there is a caveat to that promise and most of God’s other promises; that we act in His will, in righteousness and be true servants of God. We can’t just behave willy nilly, irresponsible and evil, like so many supposed believers are doing nowadays and expect to receive the benefits of His promises. No! Our God is indeed a good God, but He’s not a dithering, faltering grandfather, who just does whatever we wish, regardless of our behaviour. Certainly not! We are in a partnership with Him, and He does expect a certain standard of behaviour from His believers, and a high standard at that. One of diligence and excellence, like Jesus showed during His earthly sojourn. 

No, the Lord doesn’t expect us to do everything right like Jesus, because He did not make us perfect, but He does expect us to walk as closely as possible in Jesus’ footsteps, with LOVE, and compassion being first and foremost in our lives, regardless of our personal difficulties, for that’s what Jesus did! And please remember that though Jesus was God, He was also human, so He experienced and felt the exact same things we do, but He just never sinned or gave into the temptations of the enemy. As the author of Hebrews tells us: ‘For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (sympathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (our weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.’ (Heb. 4:15) 

There again, our wonderful God has made provision for our falling into diverse temptations because of our sinful nature. Through the blood of Jesus shed on the cross of Calvary that brought reconciliation between man and God, we are also entitled to come to Him for forgiveness through sincere repentance. Now, which other faith has such wonderful provisions for a bunch of ungrateful sinners eh? None! And yes, the Lord’s given us free will to choose whatever we want to do, but it doesn’t mean we can just sin and be disobedient as we like and get away with it. No siree, for there are consequences, ofttimes major, life-changing ones to every sin that we commit. 

Please don’t forget what Bruh Paul said in his letter to the Romans about that soul-defeating, challenging, enemy hurled thing called sin. He clearly outlined. ‘For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ our Lord.’ (Rom. 6:23) Yes friends, that tells us what we deserve, as opposed to what we get through God’s unmerited favour! If we insist on being sinful and not embracing Christ as Lord and Saviour, then our eventual disposition will be unequivocal death, just like the sinful and disgusting enemy Satan. 

However, if we sincerely embrace Christ, and do our best to live for him, though we may sin, but not live a life of knowing and continual sin, we will end up with Him in a miraculous place called heaven, where eternal life is guaranteed. Now, I can’t think or conceive of a better place to spend eternity. But if you can, please share it with me, like I’m sharing my best idea with you. (smile) Oh my people, God’s Word found in His Holy Library, the Bible, is so chocked full of promises that if we don’t read, study and meditate on it, we’ll never find success in this crazy and evil world. 

And it’s not me saying that, but it’s what the Lord himself said to Joshua many moons ago, when He made him leader of the Israelites after the death of Moses. Please listen very closely to this oh so important scripture. ‘This book of the law shall not depart out of (be constantly in) thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written there: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.’ (Josh. 1:8) 

Oh my fellow saints that’s possibly the most important scripture in the Bible! Why? Because when you constantly meditate on God’s word and keep it continually in your mouth, note it is to be kept continually in your speech, then you will know what the Word says, and you will be able to practice it and live a successful life! In summation, I sincerely offer that there’s nothing better than that in this earthly sojourn! (smile) But the only way you’ll ever find out if I’m telling the truth or not, is by doing what the Lord says, and what I’m passing on. (smile) 

Anyway, for those of us who have accepted Christ as Lord and Saviour and are doing our best to live for him, let’s go home now declaring (steups!!!) our Tuesday mantra, letting the whole world know to whom we belong, lock, stock and barrel. As one strong and sincere voice. ‘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 my immediate neighbours, as well as with the whole wide world! Glory be!’ 

Now, let’s go out and do just that nuh; share our amazing LOVE and friendship with Christ, so that others can come to know and LOVE Him like we do! Much LOVE!

…choosing to follow the enemy brings certain death… choosing to follow Christ means living forever…please use your free will wisely…

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ       

Today’s Scrip-Bit   31 October 2022 Romans 6:23.

Romans 6:23.       The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Ah friends, can you believe it’s already the last day of October; what we term Halloween Day, a pagan ritual to darkness, evil and the making of money! Yes, the dark night will be filled with young children going around their neighbourhood dressed up in ghoulish, ugly costumes, crying, ‘Trick or treat!’ hoping to get some candy from the house owners. At one stage it also involved fruits, but then wicked people began putting things like razor blades and other sharp, harmful objects in the fruits, so now it’s mostly a candy-based operation. 

Remember how once upon a time the dentists would caution us against too much candy? But apparently those days are over, for the dentists, like the retailers, also seem to welcome the brisk business they get from Halloween. Hn! It’s all about the money, and any evil or foolish scheme that will fill the coffers is fair game. But as true believers, we have to resist the devil and his deceitful schemes and instead of accepting his darkness and lies, seek, accept and nurture within our souls the light and truth that’s Jesus Christ! 

And He said it out loud and clear. ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.’ (John 14:6). Then there’s this other concrete pronouncement to the unbelieving Pharisees. ‘I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.’ (John 8:12) Thus, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is ‘the way, the truth, the life and the light’ of this troubled world. If you want to come out of the darkness and into the light, and find the way, which is based on truth, that leads to eternal life, then He is the answer! 

Now, that’s why Bruh Paul warned the Corinthians thus: ‘Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship (in common) hath righteousness and unrighteousness (lawlessness)? And what communion (fellowship) hath light with darkness?’ (2 Cor. 6:14) Now those are very good questions, but the answer to both of them is absolutely nothing in common! Although light and righteousness should be always trying to invade darkness and turn unrighteousness around. That’s one of our jobs as a disciple of Christ. We don’t hook up with those who don’t believe in hope and goodness, don’t let their toxic energy cannibalize our godliness, but do our best to turn them around. 

And these words of Bruh Paul to the church at Ephesus also remind us of the great care we need to take regarding darkness and unrighteousness. ‘Let no man deceive you with vain (empty) words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them. For ye were sometimes (once) darkness, but now ye are light in the Lord: walk therefore as children of light. (For the fruit of the Spirit (Light) is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.’ (Eph. 5:6-10) 

Excellent words for us to remember and live by! And the scholars offer these explanations. ‘5:8. Darkness indicates that the readers used to be spiritually unenlightened and accompanying this ignorance was immorality with its resultant guilt and misery. Light denotes that the recipients are now to be religiously informed. Their knowledge of the truth is attended by moral purity and happiness.’ ‘5:10. Because of constant temptations and solicitations to evil, believers must always be proving or discerning what is and what is not acceptable unto the Lord.’ 

Then these words of James anchor us even more to the truth and the light. ‘Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried (has been proven), he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that LOVE him. Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man. But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust (desires), and enticed. 

Then when lust (desire) hath conceived, it bringeth forth (gives birth to) sin: and sin, when it is finished (full grown), bringeth forth death. Do not err (be deceived) my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness (variation), neither shadow of turning. Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.’ (James 1:12-18) 

Yes friends, the unchangeable Father of lights made us with the word of truth to be the shining light of His creations. But the devil, the prince of darkness tries to mess up our witness with his evil temptations, not God. And please note that the temptations that James is speaking of here are different from the ones in verses 2-12. In our verses ‘the source is identified as internal, from one’s own lust, and the outcome is death. 

In verses 2-12 the “temptations” or trials have an external origin in that they fall on man. Those trials cannot be avoided, so believers are encouraged to endure them, and mature as a result. The temptations of verses 13-15 must be avoided, according to God’s express commandments (Rom. 13:14; 1 Tim. 6:11; 2 Tim. 2:22). The progression of sin, from temptation to death, has an analogy in the physical life cycle: conception, birth, maturity, and death.’  

Wow! Isn’t that last sentence rather interesting? It surely is! That’s why Bruh Paul wrote to the church at Rome: ‘The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (Rom. 6:23) In other words: ‘Wages: Emphasizes what we deserve. Gift of God: Emphasizes God’s unmerited favour.’ And sadly, right now our world is in a terribly sinful state, so you know what we are looking at; death, rather than life. But there is always hope when you believe in Christ, so let’s call on that hope right through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

Altogether now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. 

That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems.  And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now it’s time to turn from our sinful ways, keep on praying and asking for forgiveness, so that we receive eternal life and not death. Much LOVE!

…only two options in eternity…life…or death…your choice… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ         

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 September 2021 Matthew 6:21.

Matthew 6:21.     For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, on this Labour Day Monday, may ‘Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord (and Saviour).’ (2 Pet. 1:2) Yes friends, we do need a lot of grace and peace in these trying times, times when everyone seems to be angry, displeased and dissatisfied over some thing or the other. And the only way to get those two precious commodities is through sincere belief in the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who sacrificed His sinless life on the cross of Calvary to pay our sin debt in full! 

All praise and glory be to that wonderful Saviour of ours! He’s promised that despite our circumstances, if we believe in Him, the Father will grant us His divine grace, and thus peace, through all the vicissitudes of life. And let’s remember that it’s by God’s divine grace that we are saved, through faith; and that not of ourselves; it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.’ (Eph. 2:8-9) Or as Saint Therese of Lisieux so wisely put it a while back: ‘Everything is grace!’ 

And it certainly is friends, for all that we are and do, all that we have and will ever have, from the breath of life flowing through our bodies, to the eternal life we receive through believing in Christ, is based on the divine grace of our heavenly Father. That’s God’s unmerited favour, that nothing we can ever do will be good enough to deserve it. And all God’s people gave a loud and grateful shout of ‘Thank You Lord for Your awesome gift of grace!’ 

Sadly though, too many of the earth’s inhabitants don’t know of Jehovah God and His wonderful goodness to the children of men. And even worse yet, too many of those who do know of Him, refuse to accept that divine grace He offers, through faith in His Son Jesus Christ. Now that’s to their detriment, for it will only lead to eternal separation from God, which is the worst thing that can ever happen to a human soul. 

Oh my people, how many times do I have to reiterate that eh, before you all believe me? Eternal separation from God means not being in heaven with Him till eternity, but with Satan, the Devil, Beelzebub, or whatever name you choose to call him, facing damnation in the fiery halls of hell, and eventually being cast into the lake of fire with all the other unbelievers. Now tell me, are the sinful pleasures of this world truly worth such a terrible end? I don’t think so friends. And if you stop for a moment and really consider the situation, you will also realize that the pleasures of this world are not worth such a disastrous end, and can never be better than those found in heaven. 

That’s why in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus adamantly warned: ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt. 6:19-21) 

And we all know that’s the gospel truth friends, for wherever we store whatever we treasure, we will always be thinking of and contemplating on it. So, it’s much better if we store up treasure in heaven, that is, rewards for faithful service, where moth and rust nor any negative thing can destroy them, than store up earthly stuff, that’s useful today and old and rusty or stolen tomorrow. Yes my brethren, earthly things don’t last. Just look at any junkyard nuh. Everything in there was once brand new, shiny and useful, but like the shine on all earthly things it soon wore off and they became old and rusty, of no further use to anyone. 

And to further illuminate us, please listen to the warning James gave to the rich, those who stored up earthly treasures. ‘Go to ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted (have rotted), and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver is cankered (corroded); and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days.’ (James 5:1-3) 

Sadly my brethren, that same earthly treasure that the rich have laid up for their retirement, is what the Lord will use against them in the last days, for a lot of it was treacherously and deceitfully gained; robbing the poor and not paying the labourer a fair wage. That’s the basic story friends; don’t store up too much useless earthly stuff, which you will die and leave here anyway. But try and store up as many rewards for faithful service as you can in heaven, where you will eventually go and enjoy them – providing you accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, because He is the ONLY Way to the Father in heaven! 

Now, let’s talk to the Father, pour out our troubles and problems to Him, the ONLY One who can help us to put a lasting fix on them. So as one strong voice, let’s invoke our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now let’s remember that all our prayers will fall on deaf ears, if we don’t keep the promises we just made. Much LOVE!

…earth’s treasures are temporary…short lived…but heaven’s treasures are eternal…run from everlasting to everlasting…                                                                                                  

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8           

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 July 2020 Hebrews 10:35.

Hebrews 10:35.     ​Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward.
 

And then it was a cloudy and uncertain Tuesday morning, just like the cloudy and uncertain Monday we had yesterday! But it’s oh so refreshing and wonderful when you don’t have to depend on the physical weather to get your sunshine; when you have the bright, amazing and beautiful light of Jesus and His everlasting salvation shining in your souls! Mama Mia! Yeh friends, you can tell that the ole fella is definitely glad to be alive to see another glorious day, be it physically rain or shine! It’s the only way to live this life! It also means that once we’re still here the Lord has big plans for us! Glory be! 

One person who’s no longer here with us though enjoying our earthly friendship is our ever-faithful church sister Mavis Harvey. Mavis died last week, thankfully with her family by her side, after being in poor health for a long time. But you would never have known it from her staunch and positive behaviour. She was the epitome of the sweet, quiet, godly, grandmotherly woman. Didn’t say much, but whatever she said had value. She was one of the few people who religiously attended our Wednesday morning service. 

And talk about stubborn! In the days before the church was shut down, Mavis, who lived a few blocks away and had some ambulatory problems, most always refused a ride to or from church unless the weather was real bad. She had her walker and that gave her exercise. She will always be remembered for her LOVING-kindness; baking stuff for the church, as well as knitting blankets and other baby stuff. It was good that our pastor, Father Jeff, was able to spend some time with her before she went home to glory. Our sincere condolences and prayers go out to her family. May your wonderful soul rest in peace Mavis, my sister. 

Ah friends, for more saints like Mavis in our church families, instead of the rango- tango, gossipy, resentful, petty cliques and divisions that seem to currently proliferate. Sometimes it makes one belief that the world is more inside the church body than outside, the way we behave so much like it. And especially in these tumultuous times when unity is so badly needed, it’s sad and sorrowful that we have such a divided and fractured church. 

But I firmly believe that these tumultuous times are instances that our great and mysterious God has allowed to come upon us partly for the purpose of bringing us together and showing the world that His people, Christ’s church are actually whom they claim to be; kind, LOVING, understanding, unified, helpful and godly folks, by actually doing Christ-like work amongst the poor, sick and needy. Yes, I know it’s a rather convoluted sentence, but full of truth, what I like to call a Bruh Paulian sentence. (smile) 

That’s why precious people of God, I’m here to encourage us, to exhort us to take a true and sincere stand in these uncertain and trying times to be salt of the earth and lights of the world like Jesus desires of us, so that we can rebuild, renovate, fix, make right, whatever is currently wrong with His church. Remember, actions speak much louder than words, and if ever there was a time that plenty action was needed from the church it’s right now! So let’s not faint and give up during this time of pandemic and strife nuh. 

Instead, let’s write this scripture indelibly in our hearts and action it with much vim and vigour. ‘Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience (endurance, perseverance), that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.’ (Heb.10:35-36) Yes friends, remember giving up is not in Christ’s vocabulary. And whosoever will endure to the end will receive a crown of glory. And even then, it’s not so much about the eventual reward nuh, but the fact that we LOVE and admire Jesus and all that He’s sacrificed for us and we just want to do His will as best we can. The eventual reward is just lagniappe, brawtha, icing on the cake. It’s not what should really move us. 

And I think this scripture from Peter is very useful for us in these non-understandable times. ‘But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent charity (LOVE) among yourselves: for charity (LOVE) shall cover a multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging (grumbling). As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles (utterances) of God; if any man minister. Let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet. 4:7-11) 

Oh friends, please remember that whatever we have, be it earthly wealth and power, or spiritual gifts they still belong to God, and we are only stewards down here on earth to ensure that they are well used and distributed. And please allow these words of Bruh Paul to sink deeply into our consciousness and truly live by them. ‘For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. 

For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office (function): So we being many, are one body in Christ, and every one (individually) members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith.’ (Rom. 12:3-6) 

Ah mih people, the long and short of the story is that through the grace, the generosity, the undeserved favour of God, we have all been given certain gifts in different areas, and we must use them diligently, without grumbling or greed, to effectively promote Christ’s church. That’s it in a nutshell! (smile) And there’s truly no better time for us to come together and do our thing (stir up the gift of God) than right now when the world is in such a state of confusion and we are the ONLY ones with the ONLY solution: Jesus Christ! 

Now let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. 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 do we ever need to share Jesus’ LOVE and friendship with this sad and sorrowful world! Much LOVE!

…in tough times…tough people…namely Christians…stand tough…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 May 2019 John 14:27.

John 14:27.   ​Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
 
To all my Scrip-Bit friends and family, ‘beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ!’ Yes fellow saints in Christ, may God’s grace and peace be with us this day, as we go out to do His will. 

And the scholars offer this interesting explanation of Bruh Paul’s favourite greeting. ‘1:7. Called to be saints: This tells how they got to be saints, namely by way of God’s call. (cf. Rom.8:30) Grace is the typical Greek greeting, whereas peace is the traditional Hebrew greeting.’ 

So canny man that he was, Bruh Paul put the two together to make his own. And believe you me friends, we need both the grace and peace of God, everyday we awaken to the cacophony and evil that’s currently going on in our world, if we’re to ever make a move forward! They are the only things that will keep us steady and steadfast and allow us to manoeuvre successfully in this world. 

And what is grace you ask? It’s simply God’s unmerited favour! He gives us stuff that we don’t deserve; stuff to help us get through this life in His way, as we seek first His kingdom. Just like mercy is basically not receiving the punishment we truly deserve. Yeh, they are simple terms, but are they ever important and effective if we want to live a truly Christian life! 

And peace…Oh friends, that’s the most wonderful of all God’s valued gifts. For when there is peace in your soul and spirit nothing moves you, nothing disturbs your equilibrium! Even in the most dangerous and life threatening storms you are calm and unmoveable because you have that wonderful peace of Jesus within you! Wow! 

And what kind of peace are we talking about, what peace is that, that’s so powerful it can calm us even in the time of storm? Remember, He’s the man who literally calmed the storm! ‘Even the winds and the sea obey him!’ (Matt.8:23-27) Oh friends, there is ONLY one kind of peace that’s so powerful, and that is the peace we receive from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ when we sincerely believe in and follow Him! 

And all His saints gratefully cried out: ‘Thank You Lord Jesus! Thank You for Your amazing peace so that we can handle this crazy, strife-filled, ungodly and evil world!’ And why is this peace so different from any other kind of peace? Because it comes from Jesus and it’s just different. Hear him tell it: ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ 

Hello there mih breddren! Jesus’ peace is nothing like what the world offers, because He’s conquered the world and all it’s evil, and like a mighty conqueror gives his citizens peace after the war, so does Jesus give His peace when you come to Him in humble sincerity. Hear these winning words of His later on. ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 1:33) 

Glory to God my people! Jesus, by His triumphant resurrection on Easter Sunday, has indeed defeated hell, death and the grave and taken away the keys from the evil one. Therefore in that immortal victory, all of His followers can find a substantial peace, a peace that’s not available to anyone else, or from anywhere else! 

As Bruh Paul so appropriately declared (yeh!) to the Romans: ‘Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us.’ (Rom.8:35-38) 

Mama Yo! What powerful and reassuring scriptures my brethren! If we sincerely believe in Jesus then all the problems of the world will not separate us from His awesome, amazing and ever-so-wonderful LOVE! That’s the power that’s found in Him! And you see it in Bruh Paul’s own life. All the trials and tribulation he endured, didn’t turn him away from Christ! In fact it made him stronger! 

As he said so powerfully in his missive to the church at Philippi: ‘Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.3:13-14) 

Yes friends, Bruh Paul wisely put his guilt from his earlier harassment of the church, as well as all his previous successes in building Christ’s church behind him, so that he could press on to the high calling of God, meaning there was still work to be done, and he could not afford to rest on his laurels. 

Oh my people, the same thing applies to us today. Please, let’s put all our guilt and whatever else behind us and press forward to the high calling that God has in store for each and every one of us! It’s time we took the bull by the horns and just moved forward as one, as one body, as Christ’s strong and immovable church! Amen! (smile) 

And with that stirring plea, let’s go home now declaring (yes!) our Thursday Blessings, outlining some of the grace that our God has so plentifully bestowed on us as believers in His only Son, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. In full voice, sincere hearts and strong sense of purpose: ‘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!’ 

Glory be mih people! But please note the proviso in that bountiful display of grace: we are not to hoard it, but to share it generously with others, just like Christ shared it generously with us! Much LOVE!

…sailing in this life… with Jesus as your guide and pilot…NO storm can disturb your peace of mind…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 April 2018 2 Peter 1:4.

2 Peter 1:4.    Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

Oh friends, this salutation seemed like the best way to begin today’s message, as it runs with our Bit. And if it was good enough for Peter, it’s good enough for me. (smile) Randy O’Brien, ‘a servant of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like (the same kind of) precious faith with us through the righteousness of (our) God and Saviour Jesus Christ.  Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through (in) the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, 

According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to (by) glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.’ (2 Peter 1:1-4) 

Oh my fellow believers, you all hear that? Through our belief in Jesus Christ, we’ve been given ALL things that pertain to life and godliness, accompanied by ‘great and precious promises’ which help us get away, and stay away from the lustful and licentious behaviour of this evil world. Wow! What could be better than that eh friends? NOTHING REALLY! 

The Lord has implanted His Holy Spirit to dwell in ALL believers, and the power of the third person of the Holy Trinity provides ALL that we need, or will ever need to be successful in this life. Please remember that, and seriously take hold of it nuh. 

The fruit of the Spirit has already been planted in us, all we have to do now is ask the Lord to help us water and nurture them so that they can grow and show up in our lives, so that we can be good examples to the world, salt and light, and glorify and exalt His most precious and Holy Name! Glory be my brethren! 

And we going to continue looking at some of God’s promises today. And this is one of my favourite, because I am currently living it. The immortal and oh so true words of Bruh David. ‘Trust in the Lord and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed (feed on his faithfulness). 

Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgement (justice) as the noonday.’ (Ps.37:3-6)

Oh friends, if it’s one thing I can testify to is the Lord’s faithfulness. Although I’ve been going through a rough time medically this past year and a half, with no real relief in sight, you wouldn’t believe how the Lord has been blessing me during this time, surprisingly making some of the desires of my heart come to pass. Brother! Is he ever a wonderful God! 

The problem with most of us is that we expect something for nothing – both from man and God. But that’s not real life my people! Generally speaking, you get back when and what you give. As Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) likes to say; ‘You reap what you sow, more than you sow, and later than you sow.’ That’s just a fact of nature! 

That brings us to this awesome but also frightening promise: ‘For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (Romans 6:23) Yeh mih breddren, if you insist on following the sinful, lustful world, death will be your eventual reward. 

However, if you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour and do your best to be obedient to His rules and principles, then you will receive the most wonderful gift there is; that of salvation and everlasting life with Christ. As the scholars tell us: ‘6:23. Wages: Emphasizes what we deserve. Gift of God: Emphasizes God’s unmerited favour.’ 

Yuh see the difference friends? One is what you deserve; the other is mercy, giving you something good that you don’t deserve. And please remember that salvation is indeed a gift from God, we can’t do anything to deserve it. All the good works we do mean nothing unless we believe in Christ as Lord and Saviour, for that’s the way the Lord set it up, so that none of us could boast about our good works. 

And that, I think, brings us to the end of these messages on the promises of God. I implore us to study them and take them to heart, because as Peter says, they’ve been given to us so that we can lead a good and prosperous life here on earth. Please don’t let them go to waste, and then complain about your bad luck and other negative situations. Then you only have yourself to blame. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings which have been showered down on us because we have tried to be obedient to God’s law and have taken up and held on to His many generous promises. All together now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! 

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

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

And one of God’s most important laws is for us to now go out and share those blessings with the less fortunate! Much LOVE!

…promises…promises…I’m standing on the promises of Christ my God…