Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 March 2016 Philippians 1:29‏‏‏

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

Aye mih breddren, it’s a white winter’s morn in my neck of the woods this Holy Thursday of 2016. Yes, it’s beautiful to the eyes, but ever so dangerous to the body. A late winter, early spring storm dumped some of the white stuff on us; thankfully not as much as the East Coast and parts to the north of us. 

The problem though is it’s not straight snow but more a combination with freezing rain, which means there’s a high ice content making things very slippery and dangerous. So those of you who have to go out there, please make sure you are very careful because it doesn’t take much under those conditions for accidents to happen. 

Thankfully I don’t have to go out there today. And besides, the last two days have been rather busy, and what with the unusually late nights too, the ole fella needs a bit of a rest. He’s not as young as he was or as mobile and agile as he thinks he is. (smile) 

And we’re going to begin today with a serious and sincere prayer from Gramps Schuller’s (Robert H. Schuller) Hours of Power Devotional. We’re going to give ourselves to God, either for the first time, or if we’ve done so before, rededicate our lives to Him. 

So please pray with me: ‘Almighty God, it is a beautiful way to live to know that you are there with a plan for my life, and through prayer I can draw my life into harmony with your plan. I know, God, that your plan for my life calls for me to follow Christ. 

Jesus Christ, I give my life to you. I’ve never done it before. That has been my problem. That has been my hang up. O God, I give my life to you now. Take my life Jesus Christ, and make it yours. Forgive my sins. Fill me with your LOVE. You are doing it now and I thank you. Amen.’  

Yeh friends, what better time to dedicate or rededicate our lives to Christ than just before He sacrifices His life for us tomorrow on Good Friday! 

We all know it wasn’t an easy time for Him, how He went into the Garden of Gethsemane in the evening and with an anguished spirit, pleaded with the Father, that if it were at all possible, He would be spared the difficult and dehumanizing ordeal. (Matt.26:36-46) 

But it was not, and Jesus knew that, but it just shows that in His humanity He was as vulnerable and anxious as any man would be. 

However, finally accepting that His ordeal could not be put aside, He eventually said: ‘O my Father, if this cup may not pass from me except (unless) I drink it, thy will be done.’ (Matt.26:42) 

Ah mih people, that is how we have to react sometimes too. Even though we know that the going will be pretty rough and painful, if it’s the Lord’s will, we just have to grin and bear it. Remember too, that He will not give us more than we can bear, and will always help us through whatever painful and sorrowful situations we go through. 

Those are the thoughts of faith we must use to get us through the rough times. For as our Bit declares: ‘For unto you it is given in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.’ 

Oh my fellow believers, unfortunately, living for Jesus is a two way street. It’s not easy, but the rewards do outweigh the pain and heartache. And as we promised yesterday, here is the rather appropriate passage from 2 Corinthians. 

‘For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.’ (2 Cor.4:17-18) 

Yeh friends, we can’t afford to merely look at and concentrate on the things that are happening to us in this life, because they are temporary, only for a short while, but through our eyes of faith must keep focused on the things of heaven which we cannot see, but which are so much more valuable and worthwhile than the destructible things of the world. 

My brethren, it’s a serious decision we have to make to follow Christ. We cannot have a wishy-washy, half-baked, fence-sitting attitude, if we really want to be a true Christian. It’s true that Christ died that we may have an abundant life, but he also said that it would be filled with persecution, just because we believed on Him. 

However, He also said that we should not be afraid, because he had already conquered the world, and there was nothing the world could do to us. And we’ll finish with another appropriate scripture passage for this Holy Thursday. 

This one from Hebrews: ‘Looking unto Jesus the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith: who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.’ (Heb.12:2) 

And what was that joy, you ask? ‘Wherefore God hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name; That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of (those) things in heaven, and (those) things in earth, and (those) things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.’ (Phil.2:9-11) 

Yes precious people, that’s how the Father rewarded Jesus for sacrificing His sinless life for us. Will He not amply reward us too if we are obedient to His will? Of  course! 

So please let’s go into Good Friday with a sense of suffering for and with Christ, so that when He is exalted, we also will be exalted with Him. There’s no better wisdom than that! Much LOVE!

…any ‘sufferation’ that comes from doing God’s will…will be amply rewarded….in God’s way…and in God’s time…that’s a proven fact… 

P.S. It’s late and long, but oh so good! (smile) Much LOVE!

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 November 2015 Psalm 42:5

Psalm 42:5.  Why art thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).

And then it was Sunday… the day Christians pray for, so that they can gather in the Lord’s sanctuary and praise and worship Him in all sincerity and truth. Yes Friends, it’s time to get ourselves hither to church. 

The Lord’s waiting for His children to come together to give Him thanks and praise, hear His Word and rejuvenate their spirits, so that they can have the wherewithal to continue walking in His Son’s name on this disgusting and wicked earth.  

So please don’t make any feeble excuses. And if you’re genuinely not able to go, then turn on your television or radio so that you can at least hear the Word. 

What did Bruh Paul write to the church at Rome? ‘So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.’ (Rom.10:17)  Yes my people, faith comes by hearing the word of God; its oral communication. When we hear God’s Word then our faith is raised up, it is strengthened. And we all need to raise our faith this Sunday morning, that’s a fact! 

And we’ll get right into our Bit, because we have a lot of scriptures to share today. ‘Why art thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).’ 

Oh my fellow believers, I know some of you are tired of the same Bit for the last few days, you want to hear something new every day. (smile) But that HOPE it talks about is such an important part of our walk with Jesus that we need to have it written indelibly in our souls, so that we can call upon it at a moment’s notice. 

It needs to come as a natural reaction, not something we have to stop and think about. And the only way that can happen is by constant repetition. So please bear with me, for it’s all for our own good. 

And the first bit of scripture comes from Psalm 16, where Bruh David is seeking preservation and blessing. With his usual self-effacing but confident style, he declares: ‘I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope.’ (Ps.16:8-9)  

Oh what encouraging words of scripture my brethren! When we put our trust in God, we feel safe and strong, and our hearts become glad, which leads us to have oodles of hope, which eventually turns into strong faith! 

And all of God’s people declared a loud and proud: ‘Glory Hallelujah! Blessed is the Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob!’ 

Now listen to these verses from Psalm 119, from the section SAMECH – I hate vain thoughts. ‘Uphold me according unto thy word, that I may live: and let me not be ashamed of my hope. Hold thou me up (uphold me), and I shall be safe: and I will have respect unto (will observe) thy statutes continually.’ (Ps.119:116-117) 

More of the same sentiments Friends! When we put out hope and trust in God, He upholds us. And yuh better believe one thing our God will not do is let us be ashamed of our hope in Him. Definitely not! He takes too much pride in His faithfulness to allow that to happen. 

Meanwhile Peter tells us in his call to Christian dedication: ‘Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind (prepare your mind for action), be sober, and hope to the end for grace (rest your hope fully upon the grace) that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.’ (1 Pet.1:13) 

And the scholars offer these explanations of that verse. ‘1:13. The exhortation to set one’s hope involves an inward resolution. Gird up the loins of your mind: The imagery is that of personal discipline and outward conduct. Be sober (Gr. nephontes): Be free of every sort of mental and spiritual intoxication. The revelation of Jesus Christ is the Second Advent when Jesus returns to earth to set up His kingdom.’ 

Ah Friends, we all need hope, all the time! And I had this passage from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional to share from yesterday, never did though. I guess it was meant for today. (smile) And our God works in such mysterious ways that on the days that I chose to focus on hope, so did Gramps Schuller. 

The day’s devotion was titled You Need Hope. And it ended thus: ‘You need hope…when you’re dying. And you need hope in all your living. There will be no LOVE without it. Hope is what will keep your faith alive. That’s why hope is in the middle of the holy trinity of emotions, “Faith, Hope and LOVE.’  

Now that’s indisputable truth my people! We need hope from birth until death! 

And we’ll close the same way the psalmist closed Psalm 42, from which our Bit is taken. ‘Why art thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health (help, lit. salvation) of my countenance, and my God.’ (Ps.42:11) 

Yes Friends, he words it a little differently, but it still means the same thing; in Almighty God is our hope and our help; now and forever! Please never forget that. Much LOVE!

…now faith is the substance (realization) of things hoped for…the evidence (conviction) of things not seen…  (Heb.11:1)

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 November 2015 Psalm 42:5‏

Psalm 42:5. Why art thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).

So it’s Friday my people… ‘Yes! That’s why we’re loudly declaring: TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and the weekend’s here at last. Oh glory to God for a couple days off from harsh labour! We going to party, and party…and then party some more!’ 

Oh Friends, nothing’s wrong with partying, but like most things too much of it is bad for both our bodies and souls. We need to find a right balance in our weekend activities if we want to be successful in this life. Now our Friday Chant gives us a much better perspective on how to use the weekend, so let’s chant it nuh. 

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.’ 

Now isn’t that a much better way to spend the weekend? It surely is! So hopefully some of us who had the serious party scene and much debauchery envisaged will tone it down to a more righteous state. (smile)  

And without further ado, we’ll introduce our Bit, because we have plenty scriptures to look at today. ‘Why art thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).’ 

That’s gospel truth Friends! And I believe a little personal testimony is appropriate here. Yesterday evening during my time of personal devotions, my spirit was somewhat off kilter, it just was not right and I couldn’t focus on my devotions as I wanted to. 

Now nothing was really wrong, there was no cause for the apparent malaise in my soul that I could put my finger on. So I asked the Lord for some direction and understanding. And would you believe that when I came to Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional, the daily devotion was titled ‘Choose to Be Hopeful.’ 

And we certainly can choose to be hopeful my people. It’s a choice that’s open to us all. So though today might be somewhat rough, tomorrow is on its way, it’s inevitable and does hold the promise of better times. 

And as I read Gramps Schuller’s words, I began to chuckle: ‘The only thing between today and tomorrow is tonight. And that’s when the stars come out! So never give up on hope! Don’t drop the curtain on tomorrow. Great people are ordinary people who just will not give up hope. And what is hope? It is Holding On, Praying Expectantly.’ 

That’s oh so true my fellow believers! And thereafter my spirit was enthused! Glory to God! After my devotions I even got up and did some of the things I wanted to do, but previously had no energy or enthusiasm to do them. 

So you see our heavenly Father responds to our pleas in so many unexpected ways that we should never really lose hope or faith or give up on Him, regardless of how long His answer might be taking to come. 

That reminds me of Jeremiah when he lamented to God. ‘He hath filled me with bitterness, he hath made me drunken with wormwood. He hath also broken my teeth with gravel stones, he hath covered me with (bent me down in) ashes. 

And thou hast removed my soul far off from peace: I forgat prosperity. And I said, My strength and my hope is perished from the Lord: Remembering mine affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall (bitterness). 

My soul hath them still in remembrance, and is humbled (bowed down) in me. This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.’ (Lam.3:15-23) 

Oh my brethren, you see that though Jeremiah underwent all sorts of hardship, even in his remembrance of them, he knew, or was hopeful enough to realize that it was only the Lord’s LOVING-kindness and compassion that keeps us from destruction. His faithfulness is unbreakable and His mercies are new every morning, thus giving us a brand new start every day. 

So if Jeremiah could figure that our after all his misfortune, why can’t we eh, especially when few of us have undergone his woes and troubles? We have to hold on to hope Friends, because that’s the only thing that will see us through. 

What did Bruh Paul say to the church at Rome? ‘For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience (perseverance) (eagerly) wait for it.’ (Rom.8:24-25) Gospel truth that my brethren! 

So it’s imperative that we all get out there today into the topsy turvy world filled with hope, bubbling with it until it overflows, (smile) remembering God’s faithful promises never to leave or forsake us, to bring us safely through each and every trial so that we can enjoy salvation and eternal life with Him at some future date. Now that is the HOPE of every believer! Much LOVE!

…let’s all hold on in hope…praying expectantly and eagerly…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 November 2015 Psalm 42:5‏

Psalm 42:5. Why art thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).

Aye mih Scrip-Bit Family, welcome to a wet and windy Thursday in my neck of the woods! It’s great to be alive! Glory to God! 

And who says you can’t teach old dogs new tricks eh? I went to bed late last night, or early this morning, and got up late. Wow! 

And I’m certainly feeling much better than I did yesterday morning. Instead of the doddering, dawdling old man I was yesterday, I’m hustling around today like a young buck in his prime. (smile) Just goes to show we have the ability to learn from our mistakes and circumstances. 

And this morning I want to share a few words on the ever so important word called HOPE, which all of us so desperately need in these difficult and dangerous times. It comes from Gramps Schuller’s  (Dr. Robert H Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. The title asks the tantalizing and titillating question ‘What is this thing called Hope?’ 

And in his usual enthusiastic and inimitable style Gramps Schuller declares: ‘Hope. It is a marvelous, mysterious mood that comes into your personality. Suddenly your load is lifted, colour returns to your skin, and your eyes get their sparkle back. What is it? It is a scientific experience of the presence of God operating in your personality….

You may not believe in Him, but God believes in you, even if you’re an atheist. He is not going to cast you out without offering you hope. Hope is a mystery. When it happens in the personality, it can only be scientifically described as the presence of a God of LOVE coming into your mind, your spirit, your body, your personality! This is God. This is hope!’ 

Yes Friends, hope is God coming into our spirits and declaring that it’s not over, that there is a future, a better time and place to come. Who or what else can it be eh? That’s why we hold on to the simple but ever so true cliché, that while there is life, there is always hope! 

And that’s no lie, if we’re worshipping the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, because He is all-powerful and can do anything, at anytime, for anyone, in any circumstance. Give Him some thanks and praise my people! 

So if your life or your circumstances are in a tangled mess today, please don’t give up, especially if you’re a believer in Jesus Christ, because there is no giving up in Jesus vocabulary. 

Please note how the psalmist puts it in our Bit. ‘Why art thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).’ 

And that’s how we ought to react my fellow believers anytime our souls are cast down or disquieted within us. We need only to turn to our ever-faithful Creator and Provider in sincerity and truth! 

As the psalmist continues: ‘O my God, my soul is cast down within me: therefore will I remember thee from the land of Jordan, and of the Hermonites, from the hill (Mount) Mizar.’ (Ps.42:6). 

Yes Friends, one of the best ways to increase our hope and faith is to remember all the times when God rescued us from similar situations. For if He’s done it back then, there is no reason for Him not to do it again. 

That’s why, in Psalm 71 – A prayer for help in old age – the psalmist joyfully declares: ‘But I will hope continually, and will yet praise thee more and more. My mouth shall show forth (proclaim) thy righteousness and thy salvation all the day; for I know not the numbers (limits) thereof. I will go in the strength of the Lord God: I will make mention of thy righteousness, even of thine only.’ (Ps.71:14-16)  

Ah mih people, those are words for us to emulate! When our spirits are low, then the best thing for us to do is to praise God, give Him the thanks that He so rightfully deserves. So in rough times, we remember His faithfulness in the past and give him endless thanks and praise for all He’s done. There’s no better way to come up over our sorrow and sadness.

And Jeremiah in his Lamentations tells us: ‘The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.’ (Lam. 3:24-26) 

Oh my people, my people, what wonderful words of wisdom and encouragement. And remember, if anybody should know about sorrow and a despairing soul is the prophet Jeremiah, who went though so much hurt and low times because he dared to tell his people the truth about their sinfulness and lack of sincere worship to the God of their fathers. 

And we’ll conclude with some hope-filled and faithful words from the prophet Micah, when he talked about the moral sins of Israel. ‘Therefore will I look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me. Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord shall be a light unto me. 

I will bear the indignation of the Lord, because I have sinned against him, until he plead my cause (case) and execute judgement (justice) for me; he will bring me forth to the light, and I will behold his righteousness.’ (Mic.7:7-9) 

O Friends, truer words were never spoken! The Lord our God has promised to bring us out of darkness into the light and to destroy our enemies, and we know He is ALWAYS faithful in keeping His promises. 

So please, let’s go about our business today with a hungry hope and expectant faith in our hearts, and a joy in our souls that comes from a right and real relationship with Almighty God. Now that is indeed wisdom of the highest order. Much LOVE!

…one can’t have faith without hope…for hope is the seed… from which the fruit of faith blossoms and blooms…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 November 2015 Psalm 95:1‏

Psalm 95:1.   O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise (shout joyfully) to the rock of our salvation.

Ah Friends, these late nights and early mornings going to be the death of the ole fella yes! But I’m just naturally a night owl! (smile) I awoke earlier on, looked at the clock and decided it was time to get up, but then thought I’d just roll over and soak for a while. 

Hn! But it seems that I fell asleep again, and it was almost an hour later that I finally finished soaking. Hn, hn! What a life eh! 

Then I discovered that today, Thursday, was another British type weather day; constant drizzle. Yesterday afternoon turned out beautifully though, with bright sunshine. Let’s hope that today will do the same. 

But regardless of how the day turns out, it is still the day that our great and wonderful God has made, filled with plenty new blessings and mercies, so let us rejoice and be glad in it, as we were meant to do. 

Now here is something I’ve been trying to share for about three days now, but was thwarted by the Holy Spirit every time. I guess I wasn’t meant to share it until today. So here it is, something from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional titled ‘LEARN TO KNOW GOD.’  

That’s something we all need to do my people! So please pray with me. ‘Dear Jesus, I’ve got to know you better. Please help me! I can feel my spiritual and emotional walls crack. I can hear old chains break. I can feel my heart opening like a heavy old door whose ancient seals have just begun to break. 

I can sense the footsteps of Jesus walking into my life. I am beginning to experience the joy of a soul that is being saved, a life that is being born again. Thank You, Lord! Life’s not fair, but God is good. Amen.’ 

Yes Friends, our God is definitely good, no doubt about it! So hopefully, if we prayed that prayer sincerely, at whatever level of maturity in Christ that we are currently at, we will soon hear new doors opening and feel Jesus beginning to move at a higher level in our lives. 

For remember, it’s all a lifetime process, and we never finish learning and maturing until we take our final earthly breath. And to help us do that, in terms of the praise and thanksgiving aspect, we’ll continue our series of messages along those lines. 

And our Bit once again wisely invites us: ‘O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise (shout joyfully) to the rock of our salvation.’ 

Oh Friends, there’s nothing better in this life than giving thanks and praise to our most wonderful and ever-LOVING God! Why? Because that’s one of the main things we were created for! 

But unfortunately we have relegated it to the back parts of our Christian walk. You don’t hear believers singing as often and as joyfully as we once did, because we have been caught up in, entangled by the tentacles of the evil world and all its false and deceptive deeds and teachings. 

But today my brethren, we’re going to attempt to correct that with some joyful scripture. Here is Bruh Paul’s prescription to the Ephesians ‘And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess (dissipation); but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.’ (Eph.5:18-21) 

Yes my people, we should always be in thanksgiving and praising mode, regardless of our circumstances. Remember how Bruh Paul and Silas reacted during their imprisonment in Philippi? The Good Book tells it thus: ‘And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard.’ (Acts 16:25) 

Yes Friends, even in one the darkest hours of their lives, they were praying and singing hymns, giving glory to God. And you know what happened; an earthquake came and broke down the prison gates, but none of the prisoners fled, which all led to the saving of the jailer and his family, and no doubt some of the other prisoners also. (Acts 16:26-34) 

So you see my fellow believers in Jesus Christ, there is no telling what our God will do when we praise and glorify Him, even in our saddest times. James says it quite right. ‘Is any among you afflicted (suffering)? let him pray. Is any merry (cheerful)? let him sing psalms.’ (James 5:13) 

And Asaph, in Psalm 50 – God is the judge – tells us what our God desires of us. ‘Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the Most High: And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ (Ps.50:14-15) 

Yes Friends, whenever we sincerely and faithfully call upon our God, we give Him a chance to deliver us, and thus glorify His Holy Name. And we’ll end with these beautiful and most assuring words from Psalm 92 – Praises for the Lord’s goodness. 

‘It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sing praises unto thy name, O Most High: To show forth (declare) thy LOVING-kindness in the morning, and thy faithfulness every night, Upon an instrument of ten strings, and upon the psaltery (lute or lyre); upon the harp with a solemn (harmonious or melodic) sound. For thou Lord, hast made me glad through thy work: I will triumph in the works of thy hands.’ (Ps.92:1-4) 

Oh my people, my people, please, I’m imploring us to ramp up our acts of praise and thanksgiving to our God and Creator, regardless of our circumstances. 

Why? Because when we come to Him in praise and thanksgiving, it gives Him an opportunity to work miracles in our lives and thus raise the level of our faith and trust. It’s wisdom at its best! Much LOVE!

…O sing unto the Lord a new song…sing unto the Lord…all the earth… sing unto the Lord…bless his name…show forth (proclaim the good news of) his salvation…from day to day… (Ps.96:1-2)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 November 2015 Proverbs 9:10

Proverbs 9:10.   The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the Holy (One) is understanding.

Oh Friends, welcome to another wonderful day in the annals of mankind! Brother! It’s promising to be a terrific Tuesday in my neighbourhood, with the temperature around 17 Celsius and the sun shining brightly. 

In fact the weather is supposed to be in the mid to high teens for most of this week, accompanied by mostly sunshine. Glory Hallelujah! That’s certainly somewhat unusual weather for this time of year, but we’re not complaining and will gladly take it, even giving off a most thankful ‘Glory to God!’ (smile)  

Anyway, let’s get right to our Tuesday Mantra, for there are lots of things to share today. 

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

Yes my brethren, that’s who we are; children of God! That’s our main identifier in this world – beloved children of God to boot! That means we’re not supposed to fret or worry over anything, just take it all to our trusted Friend, our Brother, our Lord and Saviour, our God, Jesus Christ. 

Wow! Is He many things to us or what! That just goes to show how great and noble He is, and why we should put our complete trust in Him, surrender our entire lives to His will. Oh glory to the Most High God, He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Now here are some inspiring words from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H Schuller) – gone but not forgotten – from his Hour of Power Devotional. It’s titled ‘When the Road Ahead Is Short.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘O God, from the vantage point of today the road ahead looks very short. I sense that I am about to reach the end. Remind me that every time of ending is always a time of new beginning. Every time one door closes, another door opens. 

Every sunset is a move closer to a new sunrise. Death is always the prelude to resurrection. Help me to forgive myself for my imperfections and faults. I dishonour you when I disgrace myself by nursing regrets over my human shortcomings. 

Help me to honour you by recalling great accomplishments you made possible through my life. So let me come to the end of the road with pride behind me, LOVE around me, and hope ahead of me – only to discover that what I thought was the end of the road is a bend in the road leading me into an exciting new world of opportunity or eternity.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, there are lots of truths in that prayer. Every time one door closes, another one opens; the ending of one thing or aspect of our lives is always the beginning of another. And above all when we do reach the end of the earthly road, there is the glory of eternity with God to behold and look forward to! 

And all God’s people declared a loud and thankful ‘Glory Hallelujah! Blessed is the Lamb that was slain, so that we could inherit eternity!’ 

Yes Friends, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is indeed most worthy and deserving of all glory and blessing, adoration and worship! 

Now let’s turn to our Bit which encapsulates all that we’ve said so far, and takes us even further into the real of wisdom and truth. 

Hear now my people, these divine words of Cousin Sol: from the Book of Proverbs. ‘The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the Holy (One) is understanding.’ 

Gospel truth that in spades my brethren! For until we come to reverence the Lord God our Creator and to know His ways and means, we’re like sheep lost in the wilderness. And the only way we can achieve those things is by reading and studying His Word written in His Holy Book, the Bible. 

Now that to some, is like cursing them. But the actual fact of the matter is that when you don’t read God’s Word, that is when you are really cursed and left hanging out to dry, to live by your own wits, which don’t really add up to much, and won’t get you very far. 

But when you know the One and Only True Living God, then the whole world opens up to you; the whole world is your oyster, so to speak. (smile) 

Now let’s check some other scriptures that also give the great advice found in our Bit. First up is Job’s declaration, as he speaks of wisdom being God’s gift. He ends the chapter thus: ‘And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.’ (Job 28:28) No doubt about that my people! 

Meanwhile in the first chapter of Proverbs, Cousin Sol issues this immense warning. ‘The fear (reverential awe) of the Lord is the (principal) beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.’ (Prov.1:7) What glorious words of truth those are Friends! 

And I think we’ll end today with some very useful explanations on that verse from the scholars. ‘1:7. The fear of the Lord means submission to the Lord and His revelation. When one is afraid of something, he either runs from it or submits to it. The latter idea is in view here. It is a healthy fear, like the fear of electricity or the fear of one’s parents, which causes one to act in an appropriate manner. 

The beginning does not mean that “the fear of the Lord” is left behind in the course of acquiring wisdom, but that it is the controlling principle of wisdom.’ 

Okay my fellow believers, let’s write all of that indelibly in our hearts, souls, minds and bodies today, then get to wisely practicing it. Much LOVE!

…true wisdom is ONLY available from and through Almighty God…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 October 2015 Matthew 19:14

 Matthew 19:14.    But Jesus said, Suffer (allow the) little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.

Well hello there Friends and neighbours! It’s another glorious day in God’s great universe and we have so much to be thankful for this autumn Thursday morn! Glory to God! 
 
Now we don’t have a Battle hymn, a Mantra or a Wail to declare this morning, (smile) but we do have a li’l something from Gramps Schuller from his Hour of Power Devotional to welcome the day and give God some thanks and praise and well-deserved recognition and acknowledgement. 
 
Please pray with me: ‘Thank you, Lord, for bringing me to the place where LOVE can knock at the door of my heart. O Father, do not let me be afraid. I shall not resist your affectionate touch. Let me, O Lord, have the spirit of a little child and dare to respond and run with open arms to your call of LOVE. Amen.’ 
 
Yes Friends, a simple but surprisingly wide-ranging prayer. It touches on God’s knocking at the doors of our hearts, willing us to open them and let Him in. ‘Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come into him, and will sup (dine) with him, and he with me.’ (Rev.3:20) 
 
Oh Friends, how many times many of us have heard that knock and refused to let Jesus in eh? That’s not heavenly wisdom at all. So the next time He knocks, please let Him in. It’s a decision you will never regret. 
The prayer also includes the power to not be afraid, because our God is in full control of everything and everyone in His universe. 
 
On that subject, Jesus declared to the disciples: ‘And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell: yea, I say unto you, Fear him.’ (Luke 12:4-5)  
 
And the scholars tell us that:’12:4. The body’s death is not the end of a person’s life.’ ‘12:5. God is the one with this power. (James 4:12).’ 
 
And for our enlightenment, I’ll quote James here, because I know that very few of us will go and check it for ourselves. (smile) And James says: ‘There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?’ (James (4:12) 
 
Then the prayer talks about not resisting God’s affectionate touch, which so many of us unwisely do, for one reason or another. Ah mih people, when God touches us, it’s always for a very good reason. I remember quite well when He called me some eight years ago to write the Bit, my first plea was that I couldn’t because I was not knowledgeable enough. 
 
But when God really wants us, it’s foolish to try to resist, because He will not stop, and we will only be making life harder for ourselves. It’s always best if we answer on His first call, and ask, ‘How high do you want me to jump Lord?’ Remember, He will NEVER give us more than we can bear or ever leave us in the lurch! 
 
Yuh see how Peter and Andrew responded to Jesus’ call? ‘And he saith unto to them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men, And they straightway left their nets and followed him.’ (Matt.4:19-20). 
 
The same goes for James and John. When Jesus called them, the Good Book says: ‘And they immediately left the ship and their father (Zebedee), and followed him.’ (Matt.4:22) 
 
Can you imagine poor Zebedee’s consternation when his two sons, his only help, just got up and walked off after this itinerant preacher. Hn! But that’s the kind of faith and trust we’re called to have in Jesus my people. 
 
Then the prayer talks about the ‘spirit of a little child and run with open arms to your call of LOVE.’ Remember too how the young children ran to Jesus’ opened arms and how He rebuked the disciples for trying to stop them? 
 
And that scripture is our Bit for today. ‘But Jesus said, Suffer (allow the) little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.’ 
 
Oh my brethren that is such an important scripture, one of the most important Jesus ever spoke. And His monologue earlier on, when He explains greatness to the disciples, explains it all. 
 
‘At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. 
 
Whomsoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offend (cause to sin) one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he was drowned in the depth of the sea. 
 
Woe unto the world because of offences (enticements to sin)! for it must needs be that offenses (enticements) come; but woe to that man by whom the offence (enticement) cometh.’ (Matt.18:1-7) 
Yes Friends those are Jesus’ words. And I just read some of the scholars’ explanations and though they will make the Bit longer than I desired, I believe the info there is very worthwhile. 
 
So here goes. ‘18-1-4. The dispute over who is the greatest was settled by Jesus’ emphasis that it was the one who was willing to forgive the most! Be converted means a “turning” (Gr. strepho) of one’s whole life and person toward God. 
 
This is the true biblical picture of conversion. It is far more than a mental acknowledgement of the truth or intellectual assent to certain ideas. To become as little children means to be born again (converted) as a newborn spiritual child, characterized by faith and humility.’ 
 
‘18:5-7. The little child represents a new convert or young believer. To receive such a fellow believer is to welcome Christ Himself. Therefore, the basis of true Christian fellowship is established in Christ Himself. 
 
Offenses are viewed as a reality that must be accepted in the present world, but woe (the prophetic condemnation to death) to the one who is the source of the offence. A millstone is literally an “ass-stone,” or a large grindstone turned by an ass.’ 
 
Yes Friends, that’s it for today. I know it’s long but them’s the breaks! (smile) If you can’t give up a few extra minutes for Jesus, then what’s the point eh? Happy fellowshipping today! Much LOVE!
 
…fear not…little flock…for it is your Father’s good pleasure…to give you the kingdom… (Luke 12:32)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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