Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 November 2018 1 Chronicles 29:13.

1 Chronicles 29:13.   ​Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name.
 

And so it’s Thursday…Already? Yeh! That’s what happens when you spend the first two days of the week traipsing into the big city for medical appointments; you lose track of both the days and the time and nothing productive gets done at home. Yesterday was a rest day…not a lazy day. (smile) So let’s hope some productive stuff can be accomplished today…and yuh better believe there is a lot to be accomplished! (smile) 

And to help us get on the productive side, here is this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s titled ‘There Are No Words.’ Please pray with me: ‘How can I put into words, my Lord The flooding, transforming power That sweeps my life because of You? 

How can I explain to anyone The soaring, surging peace That You alone can give? All the wonder-filled things in my life All the joyful, glorious things I owe to Your goodness, Your grace, Your LOVE. Nothing is ever the same since knowing You. And the longer I know You The deeper my LOVE!’ 

Oh my people, my people, what awesome words of truth are contained in that short poem! Every line is filled with gospel truth regarding our great God! Oh friends, once you get to know Him, NOTHING will ever be the same in your life! For when you begin to truly experience, His grace, His mercy, His forgiveness, and above all His unconditional LOVE…

Oh Mama Mia! The change in your life will be so awesome and so magnificent that you’ll be left wondering what kind of life you lived before, and why didn’t you get to know the Lord before this? But it just wasn’t the right time! Have no fear, when He’s ready for you, He brings you into His fold in ways you cannot imagine, until they happen. 

But please note one thing friends; our God might be magnanimous and magnificent, but He’s no push over! He might have a soft heart for His wayward, disobedient children, but don’t think you can take advantage of His goodness, because if you ever feel His wrath…Hn! It can be just as great as His goodness and mercy and LOVE! 

So please try your best not to get on His wrong side, although when you come to know and LOVE Him, that’s sort of difficult to do. Why? Because you’ll be overflowing with such LOVE and desire to be obedient to His will, that mistakes will more likely be of ignorance than of purposeful disrespect. 

And to celebrate all that we’ve said, I don’t think there’s a more appropriate passage in scripture to describe it than Bruh David’s words of prayer and thanksgiving, when he was raising funds to build the Lord’s temple. Please read and pray with me: ‘Wherefore David blessed the Lord before all the congregation: and David said, Blessed be thou, Lord God of Israel our Father, for ever and ever. 

Thine, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O Lord, and thou art exalted as head above all.

Both riches and honour come of thee, and thou reignest over all; and in thine hand is power and might; and in thine hand it is to make great, and to give strength unto all. Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name. 

But who am I, and what is thy people, that we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? For all things come of thee, and of thine own have we given thee. For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners (temporary dwellers), as were all our fathers: our days on earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding (no hope for any).

O Lord our God, all this store that we have prepared to build thee a house for thine holy name cometh of thine hand, and is all thine own.’ (1 Chr.29:10-16) 

What beautiful words of prayer and thanksgiving my brethren…and also of truth! Oh friends, until we recognize, and realize, and understand that everything we posses is God’s and comes from Him, we’ll never be able to truly appreciate all that we have, and give Him the kind of thanks and praise He deserves. 

That’s the basic difference between Bruh David’s time and ours. They seemed to know where there goodness came from, so they could afford to be generous toward the Lord. But in our time, generosity towards the Lord and His purpose…Hn! It’s like pulling teeth! Because we don’t truly recognize the source of all our goodness and grace and mercy. 

Anyway friends, let’s hope that all we’ve said and read today touches our hearts and souls and makes us more appreciative of what our heavenly Father does in our earthly lives when we truly come to know Him. So let’s go home now, shouting out loud and proud, the great blessings He’s showered down on us believers, as found in our Thursday Blessings. 

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!’ 

Now, two things to remember; Blessings aren’t blessings until they are shared and declared over someone! So let’s go out and warm the cockles of Jesus’ heart by doing those two things nuh! Much LOVE!

…truly knowing our great God is so amazing…that sometimes…without sincere faith… it’s hard to believe…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 November 2018 Ecclesiastes 3:22.

Ecclesiastes 3:22.   Wherefore I perceive that there is nothing better, than that a man should rejoice in his own works; for that is his portion (heritage): for who shall bring him to see what shall be after him?
 
Can you believe it people…another wet morning! Chuh! I’ve lost count now. But thankfully, it has been mostly drizzles and not pouring rain, else we would have certainly been flooded out by now. I thought it was only in the British Isles that you had that kind of weather! (smile) And despite the cold, rainy weather this Friday morning, like the post office delivers be it rain, sleet, or snow, the workingman is out there singing his song. 

‘TGIF!  Thank God is Friday oui! This week’s been a hard one; the massa really drive we plenty! Steups! He must be think we is oxen or something; the way he want to yoke we up and drive we. Chuh man! Ah sure he would beat we too, if he could get away with it. And all for the li’l pittance he pay we when the week done! 

But these is new times, we learn sense, and we don’t put up with that kinda nonsense no more! But enough about the slave driver oui! This is we time to do as we please, to eat and drink and party like if there was no tomorrow…for who knows if we’ll see another day eh? 

So let the food…and the waters flow…and remember this is Remembrance Day weekend…so we have to remember all them good people that fight so that we could enjoy this good life. So lift them up…and doh forget to treat the ones that still alive right eh! So leh we thank God for Friday’s, weekends and Remembrance Day, that we not warring no more, and we still around to remember!’ 

Yeh friends, the workingman was really worked up this morning! (smile) But as usual, he got most of it right, except the limitless, boundary less partying, which only encourages the enemy to feast on our souls.

That’s why as believers in, and followers of Jesus Christ, we institute limitations on our natural, animalistic, carnal behaviour. And that’s why our Friday Chant is different to the workingman’s song. 

So please chant it now with me, bringing the same enthusiasm and effervescence that he brought to his praise offering. As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through.

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

Yes my fellow believers, we also have the right to enjoy life, because that’s one of the things Jesus came and died for; that we might have life, and even have it more abundantly, till it overflows. (John 10:10) We only have to be careful we don’t go overboard and keep Jesus first in all that we do. 

And there’s no better scripture for our Bit today than Cousin Sol’s immortal words on man’s destiny and heritage. As the richest and wisest man ever, in his search for fulfillment – and he had plenty time, money and opportunity to do so – he finally came to the conclusion: ‘I said in mine heart concerning the estate of the sons of men, that God might manifest (test) them, and that they might see that they themselves are (like) beasts. 

For that which befalleth (happens to) the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no pre-eminence (advantage) above a beast: for all is vanity (futility).

All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again. Who knoweth (knows if) the spirit of man that goeth (goes) upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth (goes) downward to the earth?  

Wherefore I perceive that there is nothing better, than that a man should rejoice in his own works; for that is his portion (heritage): for who shall bring him to see what shall be after him?’ 

Wise words indeed my brethren! As we saw above that’s one of the reasons Jesus came to earth; enjoying earthly life while we worked towards heavenly eternity. And He also answered one question of Cousin Sol’s; that regarding whether man’s spirit goes upward or not? 

And we can say with a joyful shout that the spirit of ALL true and sincere believers go UPWARD, to enjoy a rich and glorious life with the Triune God in heaven until time eternal! Glory to God my people! Give Him much thanks and praise for His wonderful goodness to us, for He undoubtedly deserves it! 

What would we be without God’s LOVE and the selfless sacrifice of Jesus eh? Absolutely nothing but dust and hell bound spirits! Thankfully now though, we’re still dust, but heaven bound spirits! Glory Hallelujah! So please friends, let’s remember all that we’ve spoken about today and work it into our earthly lives, so that we can enjoy eternity with God, for that’s our destiny! Much LOVE!

…a glorious heaven… patiently awaits…those who sincerely LOVE God…and who diligently and faithfully serve Him…down here on earth…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 November 2018 Galatians 5:22-23.

Galatians 5:22-23.  But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.
 

Another wet morning, without even a hopeful ray of sunshine! Steups! But thankfully, there’s no precipitation currently descending from on high! (smile) Ah friends, the gloom persists, but as believers and followers of Jesus Christ, we have all we need to handle it. And to boot, we can also truthfully declare: ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’ (Ps.118:24) 

And we would indeed be foolish if we did not enjoy this extra day the Lord has granted us on His great earth. And yes, every day we’re here is an extra day, so be wise and enjoy it and live obediently for Christ, do the work God has entrusted to you!

For we each have a purpose and a plan of God for this earthly life. Our God doesn’t move vie-ke-vie; in a careless, unplanned manner, so each day we’re down here means we still have work to do under His awesome, gracious, merciful and LOVING plan. So let’s get to it nuh! 

And it being Saturday, we will take a look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first quote says: ‘The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams.’

And that’s oh so true! But unfortunately very few of us ever get to truly live the life of our dreams, because life is such a series of ups and downs, and none of us ever experience any downs in our dream life. (smile) 

The fact is that most of us have unreasonable dreams, and even with the reasonable ones, we’re not willing to work towards them. Now dreams are important in this life, but until we’re willing to action them, they will always remain dreams. 

 And the next quote tells us: ‘Live life to the fullest, and focus on the positive.’ Now that ought to be motto of the Christian believer! Christ said: ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10b) What’s the point of having abundant life and not enjoying it to the fullest eh? It would only make Christ’s sacrifice a waste down. 

But to enjoy our lives, we also have to focus on the positive aspects, especially of Christ’s teaching, because the negative aspects of the world only beat and break us down. 

And the last quote says: ‘Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live.’ Now that is gospel truth my brethren! In fact, death is not a loss of life at all, for believers it’s only a journey from one realm to the other, and even more importantly it’s from a short, finite and rough earthly life, to a long and glorious infinite eternal life. So we don’t suffer a loss of life at all, but move up to a higher, spiritual one. 

The problem is the stuff that dies inside of us while we’re living this earthly life. We’re talking about stuff like, hope, faith, joy, LOVE, mercy, forgiveness, empathy, self-control and self-discipline; the attributes of God we need to live a faithful and fruitful life; things we call the fruit of the Spirit.

Thus our Bit: ‘But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.’ 

Yes my believing brethren, those are the things we want alive and well in all of us, so that we can live the life Jesus died for us to have, and to do His work. Unless those things are reigning in our lives we’ll be unable to live good, Christian, fruitful lives like Jesus desires of us.

The Holy Spirit of God dwells in each believer, and is there for the express purpose of leading and guiding us in God-filled lives. That means we have to follow the Spirit’s direction if we want to live successful Christian lives. 

As Bruh Paul so astutely continues: ‘And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts (its passions). If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.’ (Gal.5:24-25) 

Now here are a few explanations from the scholars: ‘5:22-23. The word fruit is significant for three reasons (1) It means the result, product, outcome or effect produced by the Spirit in the believer’s life. (2) Unlike “the gifts of the Spirit” (plural), only some of which are given to a Christian, each believer is to have all nine virtues composing “the fruit of the Spirit” (singular). (3) As fruit on a tree takes time to grow and mature, so the spirit does not cultivate these virtues in the believer’s life overnight. 

LOVE is the willing, sacrificial giving of oneself for the benefit of another without thought of return. Joy is gladness of heart. Peace is tranquility of mind, freeing one from worry and fear. Long-suffering is patience with others, the opposite of a short temper, a disposition quietly bearing injury.

Gentleness is kindness. Goodness is generosity. Faith here is dependability. Meekness is gentleness, that is, courtesy and consideration in one’s relations with others. Temperance is self-control, that is, the ability to harness and control one’s passions and lusts.’ 

And there you have it friends, ‘the Fruit of the Spirit Lecture 101!’ (smile) Yes, I know it’s not easy to cultivate all those wonderful attributes, especially with the world on our back to do differently, but with the help of the Holy Spirit we can certainly work towards them and be fairly successful if we set our minds to it. 

Remember, as believers in Christ, we are done with carnal fleshly matters, and are supposed to live by the Spirit of Christ imbued in us. So let’s do that nuh, and consequently fulfill Bruh Paul’s desire: ‘Let us not be desirous of vain glory (conceited), provoking one another, envying one another.’ (Gal.5:26). Much LOVE!

…to grow good fruit…we have to sow good seed…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 October 2018 1 Peter 5:10.

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

 

Oh friends, oh friends, a reprieve, a reprieve! Yes the ole fella’s been granted a reprieve! He’s not going home today as originally planned! Glory be! The good Lord looked down from His throne on high and apparently saw that I was not doing, recuperating as well or as fast as expected, and in His infinite wisdom and abundant goodness and LOVING-kindness granted me a few more days in this paradise called Jamdown (Jamaica)! 

Wow! Praise His holy name my people because He is such a wonderful deity who comes through for you when you least expect it. Ah friends, it’s like Jesus said, all you need is a grain of faith as small as a mustard seed and you’ll be able to move mighty mountains. (Matt.17:20) 

And  it was indeed a small seed that was planted. A few days ago the idea of extending our stay suddenly flitted into my thoughts and I shared it with the duchess. Then unbeknownst to me, she picked up the baton and ran with it. Between her and our two daughters they made it a reality.

Oh my people, the Lord’s been so good to me, how can I not LOVE Him with all my heart, mind and body, be eternally grateful, testify to His amazing faithfulness, help spread His Word and seek to maximize His LOVE Revolution?  I would be exceedingly ungrateful if I did anything less, and He would be quite right to cut me off. 

And if you’re wondering why and how come the Bit is so early today, as always, with the ole fella the answers are invariably simple. (smile) I got up around five to go to the bathroom, then went back to bed. However, after an unsuccessful half an hour of trying to find a comfortable position for back, knees and elbows to coexist so I could fall asleep again, I just decided to get up and begin the day earlier than expected. 

Ah Lord eh friends! The things we are asked to go through in our later years! (smile) But I’ll gladly put up with them in return for the many blessings I’m currently enjoying. 

And my faithful brethren, I couldn’t think of a more appropriate Bit for today than these most reassuring words of Peter to the scattered diaspora of Christians in the early days of our faith. ‘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.’ 

What a wonderful God we serve my fellow believers! After allowing us to go through the fire, the flood and whatever adversity He might deem appropriate to move us from glory to glory, to mature us and make us more Christlike, He will eventually settle us down, strengthen and establish us. 

Mama Mia! Let’s hope that’s what He is doing with me right now yes, because I really don’t feel up to any more sickness and suffering at the present time. I need a break from it, so I can recuperate properly and thus be able to handle the next round with a good attitude. But I’m not really worried because I know the Lord doesn’t give us more than we can handle, so whatever He allows to come against me, He will help me to overcome. 

Remember friends, we are covenant partners with the Lord, and whatever we can’t handle, He’ll step in and control. That’s the awesome benefit of partnering; what one can’t do the other will. But remember too that we first have to do OUR part, or the Lord will not step in to help. 

Now listen to these majestic and most reassuring words of Bruh Paul to the Corinthians on the subject of grace and being called and confirmed by Christ. ‘Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. I thank my God always on your behalf (concerning you), for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; That in everything ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge; 

Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: So that ye come behind (short) in no (spiritual) gift; waiting for the coming (revelation) of our Lord Jesus Christ; Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (1 Cor.13-9) 

Oh my people, we are like those Corinthians; granted grace and peace through Christ, brought into and everlasting union with Him and strong communion with each other. So let us enjoy it all and work diligently and excellently to preserve and spread it nuh, so that at Jesus’ return we might be found blameless. For whatever God has promised to those who believe in His Son, He will fulfill. 

Now let’s go home declaring (Steups! Spelt it wrong again!) our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our exact position in Christ Jesus.  In true sincerity and strong sense of purpose: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday!

I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

 And that’s a future we can’t even begin to imagine! Much LOVE!

…and am I ever glad…in fact ecstatic…to be alive…on this bright and sunny day…hope you are too…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 September 2018 Psalm 34:4.

Psalm 34:4.    ​I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.

 

Oh mercy, mercy me! Another medical journey into that confused, misguided and badly governed city of Toronto! Hence the early publication of the Bit. But it’s all to my benefit, so cheers! Let’s have a shot of caffeine to celebrate the occasion. (smile) 

Oh, this great adventure in sickness is drawing to a close…at least I think so, so hopefully it won’t be much longer before I stop having all these medical appointments. At least they will be much fewer and further between. That’s my prophetic declaration! (smile) 

But here is something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, that we all could use this fall morning. It’s titled ‘Fear Not.’ Please pray with me. ‘Again and again, dear Lord I read Your words, “Fear not.” Surely You would not say it so often If there were any reason to fear. Nor would You command it so explicitly If You could not keep me from fearing. 

God, You have given me a Fear Not For every puzzling circumstance For every possible emergency For every trial and testing Real or imagined. Yet I confess wasted hours – Even days, dear Lord When fear clutches and clobbers me Until I am physically and emotionally spent. Lord, when David cried to You, You delivered him from all his fears. On this gray-sky morning I kneel before You with David’s cry. O my Father, I cannot believe You would be less kind to me Than you were to David.’ 

And NO, God will NEVER turn away or be less kind to one of His very own children! That’s His ever-faithful promise! So we can be assured that whatever fear that’s troubling us, if we take it to God in prayer, we will receive relief and succour from it. 

But isn’t it somewhat troubling that despite all the assurances and commands of our heavenly Father, re not to fear, we’re still such a fearful people? ‘Fear not!’ was one of the most used phrases by Jesus in His earthly sojourn. And when He said, ‘O ye of little faith,’ meant that we were also fearful, because faith dispels fear. 

And the Bible promise for that poem is also our Bit for today; the immortal words of Bruh David from Psalm 34: ‘I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.’ Yeh friends, simple, but ever so life changing words! And those from a great man of God! 

That means, although we should not be always afraid, when those times arise, we should NEVER be afraid to call on our helpful and ever-faithful God for help. Note, Bruh David said, he called out in desperation, and the Lord heard and helped him. And He WILL do the same for each and every one who calls out to Him in all sincerity and truth! 

And this is how Bruh David continues after our Bit: ‘They looked unto him, and were lightened (radiant): and their faces were not ashamed. This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them. 

O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the Lord, ye his saints: for there is no want (lack) to them that fear him. The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the Lord shall not want (lack) any good thing.’ (Ps.34:4-10) 

And all God’s children declared a loud, proud and ever grateful: ‘Praise the Lord for his everlasting goodness to the children of men!’ Yes friends, we know it’s the truth, even though we don’t always follow it! 

And that ‘fear’ we’re talking about is not ‘fear’ in the sense of being physically afraid of God, though we should have a touch of that because of the awesome things He can do, but it’s a sense of reverence, of acknowledgement of His strength and power and goodness and LOVE towards us. 

And the scholars offer this interesting comment on ‘Psalm 34. The historical background of this acrostic psalm (Hebrew poem of which the lines begin with the successive letters of the alphabet) is related in 1 Samuel 21:10-15. (Bruh David flees to Gath from Saul’s many attempts to kill him.) It bears all the marks of the testimony of one who narrowly escaped death, just as the passage in Samuel describes. As such, it contains the praise and testimony of the one who was redeemed  (vs.1-10) and the seasoned instruction that can stem from such deliverance (vs.11-22).’ 

Now let’s hear some of that seasoned instruction: ‘Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the Lord. What man is he that desireth life, and LOVETH many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile (deceit). Depart from evil, and do good: seek peace and pursue it.’ (Ps.34:11-14) 

That’s wise advice indeed from someone who experienced it! So let’s remember that today nuh, as we go home now declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘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 if we’re truly sincere, we’ll go out and share it all with others, as Jesus desires of us. Much LOVE!

…between fear and faith…there’s Jesus…Glory be…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 March 2018 Matthew 5:20.

Matthew 5:20.   For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case (by no means) enter the kingdom of heaven.

One more day friends! Yes one more day; that’s what we’ve been given, and that’s why it’s called a present, a gift, as well as the present, because it’s all we have to work with.  

Yesterday has gone by for ever, and tomorrow has not come as yet, if it ever will.  Therefore, we need to do all that we can in this present day to exalt the ONE and ONLY, True, Living God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, as best we can. 

And all God’s children said a loud, proud and grateful, ‘Praise the Lord! Thank Him for all His goodness and LOVING-kindness to the undeserving children of men. Amen! 

And as the li’l thought from the Daily Bread Devotional tells us: ‘Jesus gave His ALL; He deserves our ALL.’ I couldn’t have put it any better my brethren. Jesus did not penny-pinch and play the scrooge when He sacrificed His sinless life for us. He gave it everything He had, put His whole heart and soul into what He was doing for us. 

Now, after He died for us, then rose from the grave, from the dead, so that we too can rise eventually, given us salvation, and is interceding for us at the Father’s right hand in heaven, while His Spirit lives in our souls, leading and guiding us in all truth, don’t you think the least we can do in return is to work tirelessly and faithfully to bring His wonderful church to fruition? 

Wow! What a mouthful my people! (smile) But it is the living truth. We’re definitely not doing as much as we ought to grow Jesus’ church. And WE ALL KNOW IT! We’re still letting the evil world and it’s evil associates control too much of our time and our actions. We talk a good talk, but don’t walk a good walk. 

That’s why the unbeliever looks at us askance, with a knowing smirk on their faces. They know that many of us are just a bunch of ole hypocrites, like the scribes and Pharisees of bygone days. That’s why Jesus declares so definitely in our Bit: ‘For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case (by no means) enter the kingdom of heaven.’ 

What a bam bam my people! Imagine that nuh; the most righteous, or supposedly righteous people of Jesus time could not get into heaven. And I know that we’ve used this scripture as our Bit fairly recently, but the Lord just put it on my heart to do it again today, possibly because He knows that we need the warning badly. So don’t get vex with the messenger. (smile) 

Now listen to the scholar’s explanation, once again. ‘5:20. Because of the necessity of righteousness as a requirement to enter heaven, Jesus then declares that except their righteousness should exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees they could not enter heaven. 

The significance of this is seen in the fact that the Jews of Jesus’ day considered these people to be the most religious in all Israel. However, their religion was largely an outward show of self-righteousness. In communicating the depth of His message, Jesus used a series of contrasts between the outward behaviour demanded by the law and the inner attitude of the heart desired by God. 

Here we discover the practical application of genuine Christian character to true spiritual living. Here we see the gospel in action.

                 Law                                                                  Spirit

            No murder                                                          No anger

            No adultery                                                         No lust

            No divorce                                                          Commitment

            No oath-taking                                                 Speak the                                                                                                          truth

            No retaliation                                                   Forgiveness

            Hatred for your enemy                                  LOVE for                                                                                                        your enemy 

  (tradition allowed it)                                            (commanded)

And there you have it friends! As Christians we need to come up higher in the spiritual realm than in the law of the world, if we are to be sincere believers. And I’m pleading with us today to stop giving Christ a bad name with our hypocritical behaviour. If we can’t live up to what He expects of us, then let’s stop talking the high talk we talk, and walk whatever low walk we can. Let’s not talk more than we can do. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings, blessings that the Lord has specially prepared for us who sincerely try to do His will. As one 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!’ 

Oh friends, doesn’t it make you feel bad when you enjoy all those heavenly blessings and don’t at least try to reciprocate as best we can? It ought to. Much LOVE!

…righteousness is simply…the LOVE of Jesus…in action

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 March 2018 Psalm 23:1.

Psalm 23:1.   The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

It’s time once again friends for our weekly rejuvenation; meaning it’s the Lord’s Day and we need to go to His sanctuary to get oiled and lubed, (smile) so we can handle the upcoming week’s affairs with strength, faith, hope and confidence. 

Oh by the way, for those of us who live in the Daylight Savings Time zones, please be reminded that the clocks went back one hour tonight, which means that church will held an hour earlier. So please don’t miss it by pleading ignorance of the time change. (smile) I won’t put it past many of you to do so. 

And as always, before we hear the Lord’s word, we offer up sacrifices of praise and worship, letting our heavenly Father know that we certainly do adore, glorify, exalt and LOVE Him. Today we’ll sing one of the most well-known and heartwarming passages in the Good Book – Psalm 23 – The Lord is my shepherd. 

Those immortal words of Bruh David had to be inspired by the Holy Spirit of God. They are too meaningful and applicable to our earthly lives to have simply come from a man’s finite mind. But be that as it may, let’s raise our voices in sweet adoration and wonderful harmony, as we lift up those words to heaven, words written so long ago, but which still retain their awesome power even to this day. 

‘The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters: He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. 

Thou preparest a table in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Amen!’ 

Oh friends, did you feel the power of the Holy Spirit moving in your individual soul and felt like He was present everywhere in the sanctuary, just enveloping us all with His amazing and unconditional LOVE?  I surely did! But what a mighty work of God that Psalm is! Almost every believer knows it, and/or has used it in some tough and unforgiving times.  

And the opening verse, our Bit: ‘The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want,’ is so all encompassing and comforting that I don’t where or how to start describing it, so I’ll just share the scholar’s explanation. ‘Psalm 23. The psalm has been a favourite of God’s people through the ages with due reason: it expresses as simply and clearly as any the role of God as our protector and provider in life. 

The charm of the psalm rests on two figures of speech: the Lord is compared to a shepherd and the believer to His sheep (vs.1-4); then the Lord is likened to a host with the believer as the guest (vs.5-6). The image of the Lord as shepherd is a frequent one in both the Old Testament (Is.40:11; Jer.31:10) and the New Testament (John10:11-16; Heb.13:20). 

Believers are never pictured in Scripture as mighty lions, independent and self-sufficient; rather, they are sheep who are dependent on their Shepherd for His provision and protection. The believer is more than a dependent sheep; however, he is also like and honoured guest, since the Lord prepares a table for him (v.5). 

Connected with this honoured position is abundant provision, vindication before one’s enemies, and eternal celebration of God’s goodness.’ 

Wow mih people! In what other faith can you have all of that goodness and LOVING-kindness eh? NONE WHATSOEVER! Only if you are a believer in Jesus can you have a Deity, lead and guide you in safe paths, beside quiet waters, look after all your needs, down here on earth, then take you to dwell with Him eternally in heaven when your earthly sojourn is over. 

And please note my fellow believers, the life of eternity in heaven will even be better than that we experience on earth. So you can imagine how wonderful heaven must be! I doubt it, because our minds are too small to imagine it, but Jesus has promised it, and He does not renege on promises. 

Now here are a couple of those other verses above that quote God as a shepherd, starting with Isaiah. When he talks about finding comfort through trust in God ‘He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.’ (Is.40:11) 

And here is the piece de resistance from Jesus Himself. ‘I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep… I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.’ (John 10:11, 14) 

And we’ll close with these most appropriate words from the author of Hebrews: ‘Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect (complete) in every good work to do his will, working in you what which is well-pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.’ (Heb.13:20-21) 

And that’s my wish for all of us today, my fellow believers. Much LOVE!

…oh how blessed we are to have a wonderful shepherd like Jesus…

Previous Older Entries