Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 January 2020 Psalm 71:23.​

Psalm 71:23.    My lips shall greatly rejoice when I sing unto thee; and my soul, which thou hast redeemed.
 
And another Sunday has dawned; wet and icy and dark in the Greater Toronto Area! We did get that rain storm that was promised, and sincerely hope that it soon peters out to dry weather, because it has caused some damage in several areas. Unfortunately, I know that the inclement weather is going to be used as a convenient excuse not to attend the Lord’s sanctuary today and fellowship with other believers. 

But friends, we’re only doing ourselves a serious injustice when we stay away from church, unless it’s for a very good reason. That’s because we miss the camaraderie, the encouragement, the praise and thanksgiving, and the hearing of the Lord’s uplifting and guiding Word that such fellowship entails, and which allows us to leave the proceedings filled with trust and confidence in our omnipotent God! But to each his own. And as always, we’ll get the celebrations going with a song of praise. 

And today’s song is a wonderful one, officially titled ‘Hymn of Joy,’ but which most of us know as ‘Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee,’ from its first line. Apparently it was a poem written by minister Henry van Dyke in 1907, inspired by the beauty of the Berkshire Mountains in Massachusetts, with the intention of musically setting it to the famous “Ode to Joy” melody of the final movement of Ludwig van Beethoven’s final symphony, Symphony No. 9. 

Van Dyke explained the hymn thus: ‘These verses are simple expressions of common Christian feelings and desires in this present time—hymns of today that may be sung together by people who know the thought of the age, and are not afraid that any truth of science will destroy religion, or any revolution on earth overthrow the kingdom of heaven. Therefore this is a hymn of trust and joy and hope.’ And therefore rather appropriate for today’s gathering! So let’s raise our voices in sweet harmony to heaven, with joy, hope, trust and overwhelming sacrifices of praise in our mouths and our hearts. 

As one awesome choir now: ‘Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, God of glory, Lord of love; Hearts unfold like flow’rs before Thee, Op’ning to the sun above. Melt the clouds of sin and sadness; Drive the dark of doubt away; Giver of immortal gladness, Fill us with the light of day! All Thy works with joy surround Thee, Earth and heav’n reflect Thy rays, Stars and angels sing around Thee, Center of unbroken praise. Field and forest, vale and mountain, Flow’ry meadow, flashing sea, Singing bird and flowing fountain Call us to rejoice in Thee. 

Thou art giving and forgiving, Ever blessing, ever blest, Wellspring of the joy of living, Ocean depth of happy rest! Thou our Father, Christ our Brother, All who live in LOVE are Thine; Teach us how to LOVE each other, Lift us to the joy divine. Mortals, join the happy chorus, Which the morning stars began; Father LOVE is reigning o’er us, Brother LOVE binds man to man. Ever singing, march we onward, Victors in the midst of strife, Joyful music leads us Sunward In the triumph song of life. You bring us joy, joy, joy, We adore thee…You bring us joy, joy, joy, We adore Thee, Lord of mercy and of grace…We adore thee…You bring us joy, joy, joy…’ 

And does our great and wonderful God ever bring us joy by the bucketful my faithful brethren! You also see the amazing sentiments we can glean from merely admiring God’s handwork in nature, making the hymn one of the most joyful in our English language hymnal! Oh, friends, our God is indeed exceptional; exuding trust, LOVE, hope and faithfulness in miraculous and enormous quantities! There is none other like Him in this universe precious people! 

That’s why the psalmist who penned Psalm 71 – A prayer for help in old age – could confidently declare: ‘I will praise thee with the psaltery (lute or lyre), even thy truth (faithfulness), O my God: unto thee will I sing with the harp, O thou Holy One of Israel. My lips shall greatly rejoice when I sing unto thee; and my soul, which thou hast redeemed. My tongue also shall talk of thy righteousness all the day long: for they (mine enemies) are confounded, for they are brought unto shame, that seek my hurt.’ (Ps. 71: 22-24) 

Yeh friends, the old man had seen enough of God’s goodness and mercy in his younger days that he had ho hesitation in placing his utmost trust in Him during the winter of his days! Can we say the same thing? I certainly hope so! And just to stir us up some more, (smile) listen to Bruh David as he offers thanksgiving for God’s mercy. 

‘Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with LOVING-kindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.’ (Ps.103:1-5) 

Oh friends, it couldn’t be put any simpler and more straightforward than that! God’s goodness to the children of men is so wonderful, and the truth is, we don’t deserve any of it. But that’s the kind of magnanimous God He is! So please, I implore us, today, let’s spend some time pondering on His individual goodness and mercy and grace and forgiveness etc. etc. to us nuh, so that our spirits will be refreshed and our trust renewed, and thus give us the courage and confidence to go out and work diligently and excellently for Christ in this upcoming week. Much LOVE!

…remembering God’s goodness in our lives…raises our trust and faith in Him…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 April 2018 Matthew 3:2.

Matthew 3:2.    And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

Well friends, it’s been a helluva weekend in North America! From the Gulf of Mexico all the way up to Canada, it’s been a succession of high winds, rain, snow, sleet, ice, tornadoes, and any other kind of bad weather one can experience, and it has caused havoc in all areas of life, especially travel and power outages. And in some places in the U.S it hasn’t eased up yet. 

In the Greater Toronto Area we had mostly ice, high winds and rain, and outside still looks like the frozen tundra of the Arctic. At one stage at the Billy Bishop Airport in Toronto they experienced winds of 90 km/h per hour. Wow! Why would one want to be flying, or even be out in winds that strong eh? Let’s hope that the rising temps today along with the rain will melt and wash away all of that ice. 

I can imagine the state of the commute this morning. And the warning still stands; if you don’t have to go out, don’t go out. And yuh better believe I’m going to take my advice, because I have a doctor’s appointment in the city at lunchtime, but I can guarantee you it’s not happening. Anyway, enough about the weather, let’s turn to our faith, which helps us to handle the inclement stuff. 

And this is one day that we definitely need our Monday Morning Battle Hymn to raise our adrenalin level as we contemplate the severe negative aspects of getting to work safely. So with sincere heart and strong voice, let’s sing: 

‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Now that ought to raise our level of confidence and courage and energize us this dreadful looking morning. And please remember that regardless of the outward circumstances, the SON is still shining brightly, and is always there to help us in whatever area we may need it. 

Now let’s turn to our Bit: ‘And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ 

Yeh friends, those were the warning words of John the Baptist as he began his ministry foretelling the coming of Jesus. And I think we’d do well to seriously consider them in these evil and ungodly times. Too many out of the ordinary things and circumstances are happening all over the world for them to be just coincidence or happenstance. 

And as believers, we know that NOTHING just happens by accident or chance, the hand of the Lord is always involved somehow or the other. And remember how He destroyed the world when it was so sinful in the time of Noah? Well He only promised not to destroy it by water again – possibly by fire and brimstone next time. And it just seems that we’re playing with a lot of fire and explosive material these days. 

A lot of destructive stuff is happening in these especially sinful times, and I just wonder if the Lord is not giving us a not so subtle message to beware, He’s getting fed up with our endless shenanigans and trying to rid our society of His presence. Friends, I’m suggesting that we be safe, rather than sorry, and REPENT, give up our evil ways and return to the Lord’s fold. 

As the scholars explain: ‘3:2. Repent (Gr. metanoeo) means a change of mind that results in a change of conduct. Repentance is not merely sorrow. It involves a complete change of attitude regarding God and sin and is often accompanied by  a sense of sorrow and a corresponding change in conduct. Such repentance does not arise in man himself, but is the result of God’s mercy in leading man to it. (Acts 5:31; Rom.2:4; 2 Tim.2:25).’ 

Oh my people, please look at those scriptures and let them work in our hearts, for the end times are drawing nigh, and if we are not prepared then salvation and eternal life will be denied us, and that’s the worst thing that could ever happen to a human being. 

The world is too sinful and ungodly for the Lord to put up with it much longer. And if we keep going the way we are, with or without His help, we’ll either implode or explode. But the status quo cannot last much longer. Remember too, that Jesus can return at any time, like a thief in the night, and once He comes back, all bets are off. 

So it behooves us, believers, to talk to the world, to spread the message, to get it ready. Saying, let’s repent, let’s change our sinful, blasphemous attitude towards our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, be born again, and accept His free offer through grace, of salvation and eternal life. That’s the wisest and best offer going! Otherwise…crapaud smoke we pipe! Much LOVE!

…a word to the wise is sufficient…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 July 2017 1 Corinthians 15:57.

1 Corinthians 15:57.   But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Well friends, the 150th Canadian Birthday Party continues unabated. And though it was constrained a little by an afternoon thunder storm, after that, the sun came out brightly and the outside celebrations went on with much zest and enthusiasm, with brilliant fireworks filling the night air in many parts of the Greater Toronto Area. 

Now some people felt that all the hoopla was somewhat hypocritical because of the blemishes on our Canadian record, re the very poor treatment of the Aboriginal People up to this day, plus the insensitive handling of Chinese and Japanese immigrants during the Great War, not to mention the racism and sexism that are currently rearing their ugly heads. 

And all of those are serious problems for us to address, but if we only focus on our bad side, then no country would ever have cause to celebrate because every one has its own dark and evil problems and secrets. At least, hopefully, if we come together to celebrate a major anniversary, that togetherness will help to dissipate some of the current animosity found in our society. 

But even if we’re not together in our country, please, let’s show that we are together in our churches, in the Body of Christ, as we offer sacrifices of praise and worship in His sanctuary this Sunday morning. And today’s hymn is the old stalwart ‘At the Cross.’ So let’s rock God’s house my faithful brethren with powerful song. 

‘Alas, and did my Savior bleed? And did my Sovereign die? Would He devote that sacred head For such a worm as I? (Refrain: At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day!) Was it for crimes that I had done, He groaned upon the tree? Amazing pity!  grace unknown! And LOVE beyond degree! (Refrain)

Well might the sun in darkness hide, And shut his glories in, When Christ, the mighty Maker died, For man the creature’s sin. (Refrain) But drops of grief can ne’er repay The debt of LOVE I owe: Here, Lord, I give myself away ’Tis all that I can do. (Refrain: At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day!’ 

Oh friends, the cross of Jesus is ever so significant in our Christian faith, for it’s there where Jesus sacrificed His life so that we could be reconciled with God and have the wonderful options of salvation and eternal life. Wow! It is indeed the centrepiece of our faith! It’s where everything begins and ends! Without it, we’d be nothing, still mere slaves to the evil Lucifer, facing death and eternal separation from Almighty God, our Creator. 

But thanks to Jesus, hanging in shame and utter cruelty on that tree at Calvary, we’ve been set free from every kind of bondage. Glory to God my people! And as the song says, once we’ve seen the light at the cross, all our burdens are rolled away, and we can be happy each and every day! Mama Mia! Thank the Lord for Jesus yes! 

And as Bruh Paul so aptly puts it in our Bit: ‘But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ Now that’s the awesome truth my fellow believers? Without Christ, we’d have no victory whatsoever! That’s why we have to be ever so thankful and show proper gratitude for all of God’s great mercies towards us. 

Remember, He didn’t have to do anything for us. But because we were His creation, and so dear to His heart, He couldn’t just sit by and see us all go the way of Beelzebub! And Jesus didn’t have to give of Himself so selflessly and sacrificially either, but He delighted in doing the Father’s will, even though it was outrageously painful and shameful. 

That’s why the Father highly exalted Jesus afterwards, ‘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) Oh what a mighty champion is our Lord and Saviour! 

And hear how John saw it in his vision in Revelation. As Jesus took up the Book of Life, ‘the four beasts  (living creatures) and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps and vials (bowls) full of odours (incense), which are the prayers of the saints. 

And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book (scroll), and to open the seals thereof; for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred (tribe), and tongue, and people, and nation. And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth. 

And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts (living creatures) and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands and thousands: Saying with a loud voice, worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.’ (Rev.5:8-12) 

And that’s exactly how it should be. So please my fellow believers, let’s praise and honour Jesus, and live for and LOVE Him down here on earth nuh, so that we will be able to praise and worship Him later on in heaven. That’s wisdom of everlasting proportions! Much LOVE!

…if you don’t honour Jesus on earth…you won’t praise Him in heaven…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 April 2016 Psalm 89:6

Psalm 89:6.   For who in heaven can be compared unto the Lord? Who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto the Lord?

Oh precious people living in the Greater Toronto area, please be careful as you go out to work this Monday Morning because it’s wet, snowy, icy and slippery! Ah Lord eh! I thought now was supposed to be spring. But I guess since we did not get much snow during the official winter season we’re getting some now. 

As the Maytag man used to say in his advertisement; ‘Pay me now, or pay me later,’ intimating that one way or another you’re going to pay. It looks like the same thing with the snow; you might get away for a while, but eventually that white stuff will come back to haunt you when you least expect it. 

So friends, please leave home even earlier than normal, and please take your time, look out for the other drivers, because ofttimes they are the ones causing the problems. End of sermon! (smile) 

Now let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with much verve and chutzpah.  I know that the crappy weather will dampen your spirits, but we’ve got to rise above it and offer the sacrifice of praise with a fair measure of passion. 

All together now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Ah friends, that wasn’t the greatest nuh. It wasn’t really bad, but it did not come up to the level of our recent renditions. Our choir master, Jesus wasn’t really displeased either, because He knows our frailties and our weaknesses and knows firsthand how we can wax hot and cold in relatively short periods of time. (smile) 

Now let’s turn to our wonderful Bit. ‘For who in heaven can be compared unto the Lord? Who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto the Lord?’  

Yes my fellow believer, we might not be able to sing well this morning, but we do know that the answer to that question is ‘ABSOLUTELY NOBODY!’ 

Ah friends, when will the rest of the world wake up and realize that eh? When Jesus comes back in His full might and glory? Unfortunately it will be too late then, so we have to issue them a serious wake-up call right now my people. Let the heathen know that Jesus Christ is Lord and Master of ALL, and only through Him will true salvation and eternal life be accessed. 

Anyone not found written in the Lamb’s Book of Life will face eternal separation from God, and that is certainly the worse fate than can ever befall a human being. Now hear how the psalmist, Ethan the Ezrahite continues after our Bit. 

‘God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had (held) in reverence of all them that are about him. O Lord God of hosts, who is a strong Lord like unto thee? Or to thy faithfulness round about thee? Thou rulest the raging of the sea: when the waves thereof arise, thou stillest them. 

Thou hast broken Rahab (Egypt) in pieces, as one that is slain; thou hast scattered thine enemies with thy strong arm. The heavens are thine, the earth also is thine: as for the world and the fullness thereof, thou hast founded them.’ (Ps.89: 7-11) 

And we all know that as gospel truth, so how can any other being be greater than our God eh? No way Jose! 

And furthermore, from Psalm 113 – God’s mercies are many – the psalmist proudly proclaims: ‘Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and for evermore. From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the Lord’s name is to be praised. The Lord is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens. 

Who is like unto the Lord our God, who dwelleth on high, Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven and in the earth! He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth the needy out of the dunghill (ash heap); That he may set him with princes, even with the princes of his people. He maketh (causes) the barren (childless) woman to keep house (dwell in a home), and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the Lord.’ (Ps.113:2-9) 

My sentiments exactly my brethren!  A God who has mercy and looks down favourably on the poor and needy is definitely my kind of God! 

Ah mih people, we’re going to end here today; make the message short and sweet. (smile) In any case, we know that our God is great, rather THE GREATEST, and greatly to be praised. We don’t have to prove that to anybody. 

Nonetheless, let’s go out today, and by our words and conduct, let’s show the heathen how a child of the Most High, the One and Only God Jehovah operates out of LOVE, care and compassion, for it’s what our Lord and Saviour Jesus desires of us. Much LOVE!

…to be a Christian…a servant of the Most High God…is the very essence and purpose of life and living…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 December 2014 Jeremiah 31:31

Jeremiah 31:31.   Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah. 

Well Friends, we’ve finally reached that day for which we’ve all been waiting and longing for – Friday! 
 
But it’s a cold and snow filled one for those in and around the Greater Toronto Area. That means it will be a longer, slower and more miserable drive this morning.
 
So please leave home a little earlier and be very careful in your driving, if you want to get to work on time and in one piece, that’s bodily piece, because your mind might be very frustrated after this morning’s commute. (smile)
 
But that warning fell on deaf ears, it didn’t stop some of us from still declaring, ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday! And snow or no snow won’t stop me from giving thanks that the last day of the workweek is here. Glory Hallelujah!
 
My time will soon be my own, to do what I please with it during this upcoming weekend. No more listening and kowtowing to slave driver supervisors! Let’s give God some more praise nuh. Thank God is Friday yes! Wow!’
 
Ah mih people, Friday has such an appealing and restorative function in our lives that we care less about the inclement weather conditions than the end of the workweek.
 
But remember though, the weekend is not ours to do completely as we please; we have to have a bit of circumspection about our time and our doings. So let’s chant our Friday Chant, which helps to give us a better perspective of our insufficient two days off.
 
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 brethren, that’s the way we ought to spend our weekend. I know though, that this close to Christmas, the weekend will be filled with a flurry of activities, like shopping, wrapping presents, putting up lights, and all the other necessities we feel the season ought to have.
 
But just be sure to get enough rest, relaxation and fellowship, so that you can go back out on Monday bright and fresh to battle the heathen to a standstill. (smile)
 
And today we have a beautiful, heartwarming and ever so wise quote from the recently passed away Leader of the Opposition New Democratic Political Party in Canada, Jack Layton (1950-2011). Jack is reputed to have said: ‘Cherish every moment with those you LOVE at every stage of your journey.’
 
And that’s heavenly wisdom Friends! For life is so finicky and uncertain that our LOVED ones could be here today and gone tomorrow, either to another earthly place or to the big house in the sky. So we do need to cherish any time we get to spend with them. And this Christmas season is one of those times.
 
Around the world, a lot of us don’t see our friends and families except at holiday time like this upcoming one. I therefore encourage us to just enjoy each other’s company, forgive and forget old hurts and disappointments, live in the now, not the past, because that’s already gone, neither in the future, for who knows what the future holds for each of us.
 
So please enjoy the present, not the material gifts now (smile) but the time spent with those we cherish, for this might just be the last opportunity to do so.
 
That brings us to our Bit: ‘Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah.’
 
And my brethren, this Christmas season, or rather, the first one, two thousand years ago, is when our most wonderful God decided to implement that new and forever covenant, beginning with the miraculous birth of Jesus Christ.
 
And the Good Book details it thus: ‘Not according to the covenant I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was a husband unto them, saith the Lord.
 
But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts (mind), and write it in their hearts, and will be their God, and they shall be my people.
 
And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord; for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and will remember their sin no more.’ (Jer.31:32-34)
 
Oh Friends, what a mighty promise! One that we all know has been fulfilled by the coming of Jesus and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit amongst believers.
 
And the scholars explain this New Covenant thus: ’31:31. In this prophecy Jeremiah foresees the new covenant (testament) that God will make with mankind by extending His grace to the Gentiles. Under this new covenant, God will call out a people for Himself from all the nations of the earth to form the bride of Christ (Rev.21:1-9).
 
This new and unconditional covenant is better than the old covenant because it rests on the efficacy of Christ’s atonement for the sins of mankind (Heb.8:10-12). (First Reference, Jer.31:31; Primary Reference, Luke 22:17-20; cf. Eph.1:10.)’
 
Oh Friends, please take a few moments and check out those references, because they will help us in better understanding the scriptures.
 
And now may the Lord bless and keep us, guide us safely and give us His peace that passes all understanding, till we meet again tomorrow, Him willing. Much LOVE!
 
…nothing on earth compares to the joy and other positive human emotions…that resonate between true and LOVING friends and family…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 November 2014 Isaiah 48:18

  Isaiah 48:18.  O that thou hadst hearkened to (heeded) my commandments! then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea.

Well Friends, we’ve made it down to Thursday – Glory Be! Only one more day to go before some freedom time. But yuh know what? Unfortunately the first big snowstorm of the season has visited, in fact is still visiting my area!

Chuh! Regardless of how long you dwell in these climes, I don’t think you ever really get accustomed to the wintry climate nuh. Even those born and bred here get fed up with it.
 
It’s beautiful to look at from your window inside the warm and cozy house, but going out in it can be a rough experience for some people, especially the elderly. I guess you can number me in that category now. (smile)
 
But in the Greater Toronto Area, we do have one thing to be thankful for; we weren’t hit as hard as poor Buffalo on the other side of Lake Ontario. I heard one fellow over there say that they received one year’s worth of snow in some thing like three days.
 
Ah Lord eh! But what yuh going to do eh? Not much. It’s all part and parcel for the area. You just have grin and bear it, as well as literally dig down deep, both in the snow and in your spirit to find the resources to weather the storm.
 
And fellow believers, we all know that there’s only ONE way to successfully weather any and every storm in this life, be it literal or figurative; and that’s under the protective wings of Almighty God! Any other way usually ends up being futile.
 
With all the promises of God to be found in His Word, there’s always something in it to guide and comfort us in times of sorrow and adversity. The Lord has a healing, soothing balm for each and every wound we suffer. So please don’t give up hope, don’t even think of quitting, when the rough times come, as come they will. Stay strong in faith and trust.
 
And talking about hope, here’s an interesting definition from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from his Hour of Power Devotional. ‘HOPE: Holding On, Praying Expectantly!’
 
And that’s no lie Friends, for when we hope, we do indeed hold on to God’s promises and pray with great expectations for them to come true. It’s all about faith and trust, surrender and obedience to God’s wise and holy will my brethren.
 
But sadly, like the Israelites of old, and many other once upon a time powerful nations who no longer darken the earth, we have failed to live up to the dictates of our great and wonderful God. And what He said so long ago to the Israelites, His chosen people, He’s now saying to us in these terrible times. ‘O that thou hadst hearkened to (heeded) my commandments! Then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea.’
 
Oh my people, those words do hold a bundle of indisputable truth! I don’t have to explain the great mounds of evil, of unrighteousness, ungodliness and unfaithfulness that’s currently dominating our world, and consequently the many wars, rumours of war, endless strife and general dissatisfaction that’s evident all over the globe.
 
But the strange, sad part though, is that everyone’s clamouring for peace, but there’s really no peace, for as Bruh David rightly declares: ‘The Lord sitteth (sits enthroned) upon the flood; yea, the Lord sitteth King for ever. The Lord will give strength unto his people; the Lord will bless his people with peace.’ (Ps.29:10-11)
 
So if we’re not interacting obediently with Jehovah God, how can we expect peace eh, when He’s the one who grants it? That’s also why Bruh David strongly advises: ‘Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile (deceit). Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.’ (Ps.34:13-14)
 
Oh my people, it’s something we have to actively look for and pursue! It just doesn’t come upon us of its own will. But doing that, then allowed him to say with confidence: ‘I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep; for thou Lord, only makest me to dwell in safety.’ (Ps.4:8)
 
Isaiah also echoed Bruh David’s call in his hymn of praise, where he boldly proclaims: ‘Thou wilt keep them in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on (sustained by) thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the Lord for ever; for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength (the Rock of Ages).’ (Is.26:3-4)
 
Meanwhile Bruh Paul says to the Philippians: ‘Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:6-7)
 
And it’s only fitting that we close with Jesus’ greatest pronouncement on peace. ‘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.’ (John 14:27)
 
That says it all my people! If we faithfully and obediently embrace Jesus as our Lord and Saviour, then His special peace, not that of the world, will fill our bodies and souls, lighten our burdens and increase our joy!
 
Now that’s certainly something worthwhile working towards! So let’s get a move on and do it nuh! Much LOVE!
 
…let us therefore follow after…the things which make for peace…and things wherewith…one may edify (build up) another… (Rom.14:19)

 

 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 December 2013 Isaiah 33:22

Isaiah 33:22.   For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he will save us.

 
And the clean up continues…slowly but surely… Yes Friends, the clean up of Southern Ontario continues on this cold, freezing, winter’s day, Christmas Eve of 2013. Ah Lord eh!
 
I would like to apologize though to my fellow Ontarians for my somewhat cavalier attitude towards our recent ice storm. Well it wasn’t really cavalier nuh, but I just didn’t take it as seriously as I should, and was more preoccupied with my little area, which wasn’t too badly hit, neither did we lose power.
 
But on watching the news yesterday morning, I was shocked to see the damage that had been done in the Greater Toronto Area, especially in the City of Toronto itself. They really got blasted! Many neighbourhoods have still not even been reached because of the fallen trees and wires, and they’ve been in total darkness and freezing cold since at least Saturday night, early Sunday morning.
 
It’s been reported that at the height of the storm over six hundred thousand Ontarians were without power, half of that in the Greater Toronto Area. And though the relief crews are working around the clock, the damage is so extensive and requires so much manual, physical labour, that it will take a fair amount of time to clean it up.
 
You know when these disasters strike, it’s simply human nature that all of us who are affected want and expect relief right away. But unfortunately that’s seldom possible, so many of us have to bear the affliction as best we can, with God’s help and whatever our fellow man can provide.
 
And one of the arguments going on is whether an Emergency situation should have been declared. Mayor Ford said that he didn’t think the situation warranted it. If the wind and rain we had expected during Sunday had happened, then he might have called it.
 
But I’m sure those who are still suffering the black out and freezing temps will be of another opinion. One of the problems with calling an Emergency is that many of the people who would come and help are unfortunately dealing with disastrous situations in their own areas.
 
However, it’s sure that this Christmas of 2013 – Chuh! I’m somewhat ahead of the game yes, for it’s the second time on my rough draft that I wrote 2014. Yes Friends, this Christmas of 2013 will not be such a joyous one in many parts of Southern Ontario, and possibly in the Maritime Provinces on the East coast too, since the storm is supposed to be heading there now.
 
There will be many memories, but certainly not joyful, Christmas ones. One good thing that seems to have come out of this calamity though, is that neighbours and friends are actually going out of their way to help each other. Praise the Lord! As they say, good can usually come out of bad.
 
And please Friends, as we ask whenever disaster strikes, that you pray for those suffering it. Today I ask you to pray for us here in Ontario and the Maritimes, and also help in whatever other way you can. When you sit down to enjoy your family relationships, please remember to float up a sincere word or two for all the beleaguered families who can’t enjoy it like you.
 
Now let’s turn to our Bit. ‘For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he will save us.’ 
 
Yesterday Friends, we were looking at scriptures that corroborated that awesome truth, and today we’ll continue doing the same, for it’s very important that we understand the importance of Christ being our EVERYTHING, and in this particular case, our JUDGE! 
 
Listen now to Bruh Paul as he talks to the Roman church about Christ being the ONLY JUDGE. ‘For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s.
 
For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived (lived again), that he might be Lord both of the dead and living. But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why does thou set at nought (despise) thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgement seat of Christ.’ (Rom.14:7-10)
 
Yes my people, once we accept Christ as our Lord and Saviour, we belong to Him completely, and live and die for Him, just as lived and died for us.
 
Now check out this info from the scholars’. ’14:10. The judgement seat of Christ: See 1 Cor. 3-10; 2 Cor. 5:10. The judgement seat of Christ is not punitive. It is for the sake of rewards, and every believer will be there, though some will receive special rewards for faithfulness.’
 
And here again is Bruh Paul, as he gives Timothy the charge to preach. ‘I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick (living) and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom.’ (2 Tim.4:1)
 
Meanwhile, the psalmist Asaph in Psalm 75, a warning to the wicked, boldly and rightly proclaims: ‘But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up (exalts) another.’ (Ps.75:7)
 
Indisputable truth, my brethren! And we’ll conclude with some more memorable words of truth from Peter’s first epistle, where he is talking about being good stewards of God’s grace.
 
‘For the time past of our life is enough (may suffice) to have wrought (done) the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness (licentiousness), lusts, excess of wine (drunkenness), revellings, banquetings (drinking parties), and abominable idolatries:
 
Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot (dissipation), speaking evil of you: Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick (living) and the dead.
 
For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit. But the end of all things is at hand; be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.’ (1 Pet.4:3-7)
 
And isn’t amazing and amusing my people, how we’ve come to that scripture in this Christmas season, a time when we’re usually prone to excesses of the flesh? (smile) There must be a godly reason for it. So please let’s take Peter’s words as a warning on two counts; of Christ being our eventual and eternal judge, as well as not to overdo the eating and drinking this Christmas season.
 
Let’s spend some more time pondering on the great gift of Jehovah God; the birth of Jesus, the real reason for the season. Much LOVE!
 
…He shall call to the heavens from above…and to the earth…that he may judge his people… (Ps.50:4) 
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
   
 

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