Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 August 2019 Matthew 6:9.

Matthew 6:9.    ​After this manner pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
 

‘I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord.’ (Ps.122:1) Oh my fellow believers in Christ, that’s exactly the invitation I’m offering us this Sunday morning, the Lord’s Day! Yes, it is good and right that we venture into His house on His day to acknowledge His sovereignty, holiness, grace, compassion and mercy towards us, miserable sinning saints that we are. In fellowship with other believers, we are expected to lift our voices in songs of praise and thanksgiving and receive encouragement from listening to His holy Word. 

And since there is strength in numbers, it means when we gather together, we are a powerful group, able to move mountains with our faith, but we also spread the joy of the Lord amongst each other, encouraging each other as needed. So please don’t refuse this invitation today, because you never know what wondrous blessings or opportunities the Lord has in store for you in His sanctuary today. 

And even if there is nothing special, you leave there like a preening peacock, (smile) full of confidence and joy in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! And believe me nothing is better than that in this cruel and oppressive world! Glory to the Most High God Jehovah! Ah mih people, like the ole fella getting excited…And why not eh, since Christ is the greatest thing to ever happen to mankind. And if I have to tell you that, then something wrong with yuh faith yes! (smile)

Anyway, putting all of that aside, let’s begin the proceedings with praise and worship. And since we sang the second most popular Bible scripture last week; the Lord is My shepherd, I figured it’s only right to sing the most popular one today, The Lord’s Prayer. So let’s get to it nuh, in strong, sweet, sincere and solemn harmony, so that the Father has no choice but to look down on us with favour. 

‘Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those that trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever…for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen!’ 

Yeh friends, short but sweet! And we all know it as the prayer that Jesus taught His disciples. Luke describes the scene thus: ‘And it came to pass, that as he (Jesus) was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.’ (Luke 11:1) And the scholars offer this footnote: ‘11:1. Religious communities of the time customarily had their own distinctive prayers. Perhaps the disciples wanted theirs.’ 

And we know what Jesus told them: ‘After this manner pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.’ And He went on to tell them the awesome, far-reaching words that we just sang. It’s amazing how it seems to cover all that our earthly life calls for. But if it comes from Jesus, what else would we expect eh? 

Now the scholars offer some interesting explanations on the prayer, and I’m going to share them. Let’s hope we have enough space. (smile) ‘6:9. The beginning phrase, Our Father, is completely uncommon to the prayers of the Old Testament. The two major elements of the prayer are adoration and petition. Hallowed be thy name addresses the attention of the prayer toward God and reverence for His name and His person. Hallowed (Gr. hagiazo) means to be held in reverence and holy awe.’ 

‘6:10. The phrase Thy kingdom come refers to the eschatological (study of end times) nature of this prayer. Notice that the kingdom is to be prayed for, implying that it has not yet arrived. The kingdom represents the full and effective reign of God through the mediatorial office of the Messiah. The recognition of Thy will be done emphasizes the idea that prayer is to bring about the conformity of the will of the believer to the will of God. Prayer is an act of spiritual expression that brings us into conformity to the very nature and purpose of God.’ 

‘6:11. The section of petitions begins with the request to give us this day our daily bread. Bread (Gr. artos) may be applied to the provision of food in general. The term ‘daily’ (Gr. epiousios) denotes “indispensable.” The concept of daily provision of bread fits perfectly with the Old Testament example of the daily provision of manna to the Israelites while they were wandering in the wilderness. (Ex.16:14-15).’ 

‘6:12. Forgive us our trespasses refers to sins, which are our moral and spiritual debts to God’s righteousness. The request for forgiveness of sin is made here by the believer. In order to be saved one need not necessarily name all his sins, but he must confess that he is a sinner.’ ‘6:13-15. Lead us not into temptation is a plea for the providential help of God in our daily confrontation with the temptation of sin. God does not tempt us to do evil, but we are tempted by our own lusts (James 1:13-14). 

However, God does test us in order to give us the opportunity to prove our faithfulness to Him. He never desires to lead us into evil itself. Therefore if we resist the Devil, we are promised that he will flee from us. The prayer closes with a doxology of praise (expression of praise to God): For thine is the kingdom and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen, which is a liturgical (pattern for worship) ending similar to 1 Chronicles 29:11) Though omitted in some manuscripts, these words constitute a fitting and climactic affirmation of faith.’  

And so it does my fellow believers! I also hope that those explanations give you a better understanding of what our most beloved prayer is all about. I certainly learned a lot from them. And neither did it take up as much space as I expected. (smile) So let’s get ourselves to church sometime today nuh and enjoy fellowship with other believers in the holy presence of Almighty God! That’s my prayer and wish for all of us today! Much LOVE!

…in humble prayer…praise ought always…to come before petition…

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 January 2017 Psalm 27:13.

Psalm 27:13.   I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.

Oh friends, oh friends, it’s Sunday, the Lord’s Day, so let’s have church like we’re supposed to nuh! And as always, let’s begin with some praise and worship to open up our hearts to receive the word of our magnificent God. 

So in full voice and strong belief, let’s sing, let’s cause our souls and voices to soar heavenward. ‘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.’ 

Now that was certainly a rousing rendition my people, heaven couldn’t help but pay attention! 

And today’s sermon is based on our Bit, which exudes one of God’s great promises. ‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.’ 

Yes friends, God’s goodness is a primary function of our earthly existence, else why would He make it as beautiful and provident as He did eh? A lot of us talk about seeing hell on earth, but as the Belinda Carlisle song declares: ‘They say in heaven, LOVE comes first We’ll make heaven a place on earth Ooh, heaven is a place on earth!’ 

And that is exactly what our God intends it to be, else why would He send His Son to earth to die for our sake and say: ‘The thief cometh not but for to (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10) 

If we were not meant to have a decent life down here on earth, Jesus’ life, words and death would be meaningless. 

Oh, Jesus certainly did not mean that everything on earth would be hunky dory, but even when it wasn’t we would be okay. Listen to Him: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

He couldn’t be any clearer. Life on earth will have its problems, but even then, when we sincerely believe and trust Him, we will be able to handle those problems because He has already overcome the world’s nonsense. 

And yuh know what friends, when those problems confront us and we stand strong in His name, we come through them ever more mature in our Christian faith, for good times don’t increase faith, it’s the rough times that do. 

Just take me now as a good example. A couple weeks ago I figured I was hale and hearty, but all of a sudden I discover that I have heart problems and the whole tenor of my life changes. 

So what should my reaction be eh? Should I bang my head on the wall and blame God? Absolutely not! Because that won’t help my problem, just cause it to get worse. My reaction is to believe that God has a purpose for my problem, and wait and pray and hang in until He is ready to divulge the solution to His plan. 

Now I don’t know when that is going to happen, but in the meantime I’m expected to be faithful and relax in the peace that He gives me. Oh, it’s not easy, but with God’s help, it is possible. 

All I’m trying to say friends, is that though life can be rough down here on it, it can also be a heavenly place. The problem is that we don’t count our blessings, we count our problems and magnify them. However if we put our troubles and blessings side by side, the majority of us will discover that our blessings far outweigh our problems. 

As somebody said: ‘Count your blessings, while others are adding up their troubles.’ It’s basically a problem of attitude. We allow the world system to influence us too much, when the certain and faithful promises of Jesus ought to be our mainstay. 

And we’ll end with some more strategic and encouraging words of our wonderful Lord and Saviour. When He taught the disciples to pray, this is the basic outline He gave them. ‘After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven…’ (Matt.6:9-10)

Yes friends, we ought to seek God’s kingdom and through our prayers and consequently our actions, the will of the Father must also be done here on earth as it is in heaven. 

As the scholars tell us: ‘The recognition of Thy will be done emphasizes the idea that prayer is to bring about the conformity of the will of the believer to the will of God. Prayer is an act of spiritual expression that brings us into conformity to the very nature and purpose of God.’ 

So my fellow believers, let’s stop thinking of our lives as being hell on earth nuh, and instead consider them as the Lord desires – heaven on earth. That’s wisdom at its zenith! Much LOVE!

…Jesus came to earth to set us free…show us a slice of heaven…not to keep us in bondage…which hell is all about… 

P.S. We’re getting a li’l earlier each day. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 October 2015 Proverbs 8:17

Proverbs 8:17.    I LOVE them that LOVE me; and those that seek me early (diligently) will find me.

Oh Friends, oh Friends, it’s labouring time, labouring time! Monday morning is here, and Jesus is calling to us to join the fray… 

But first He says, just take a few moments and pray: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day, our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever…and ever. Amen.’ (Matt.6:10-13) 

Yes my people, it’s a simple and somewhat generic prayer, but nonetheless powerful in its simplicity. According to the old time formula for prayer, it begins with adoration …’Hallowed be thy name…’ then moves into petition…’Give us this day our daily bread…’ then ends in more adoration…’For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory…’ 

And though it’s a useful prayer, per the scholars: ‘This prayer, often called the “Lord’s Prayer,” is in reality a disciple’s prayer. In no way does the prayer itself embody all of Christ’s teaching about prayer; and having just warned against vain repetition (v.7), He did not intend for this particular prayer to be merely recited with empty meaninglessness.’ 

Unfortunately though, that’s what many of us do; recite it without any true heart-felt feeling. Please let’s stop doing that, because it just demeans and lessens the power and purpose of the prayer. 

And having said all of that, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with a joy and exuberance that will put a brilliant smile on Jesus’ face, and have the Father tapping His toe and clapping along with us. 

In perfect harmony 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!’ 

Oh my people, that was indeed wonderful…magnificent…magnifico! You could see the joy in Jesus’ eyes as He wielded His baton with grace and majesty, while the angels sang along. And, wonder of wonders, the Father, unable to help Himself, had to get up and dance, so moving and exhilarating was the performance! Mama Mia! 

Now that ought to get us all ‘adrenalized’ (smile) to go out and do God’s will, and thus invoke the sentiments of our Bit. ‘I LOVE them that LOVE me; and those that seek me early (diligently) will find me.’ 

Ah mih breddren, how truly wonderful it is to LOVE and serve the Most High God and be able to seek and find Him under any and all circumstances. Let’s make sure though that we just don’t seek Him when times are rough and we need help, as so many of us tend to do. 

It’s ever so important to seek Him during both the bad and good times, so that we don’t give the impression that we’re only in it for what we can get from our omnipotent God, but because we truly LOVE and adore Him and we feel refreshed and enlightened in His company; He just brings out the best in us. 

Now let’s check out a couple of scriptures which corroborate our Bit, beginning with words from the promise of a glorious return to Jerusalem of the captive Israelites in Babylon. ‘Thus saith the Lord the maker thereof, the Lord that formed it, to establish it; the Lord is his name; Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not (are inaccessible).’ (Jer.33:2-3)

Yuh see Friends, Judah had turned away from the Lord, been corrupt, proud and unfaithful to their covenant with Him, so they had to suffer the unfortunate consequences. Likewise, we, individuals as well as nations will suffer serious consequences for our disobedience. However, our God is so gracious, merciful and forgiving, that if we repent and sincerely turn back to Him, He is willing to accept us back into His fold.  

That brings us to Job being implored to repent of his sin by his buddy Eliphaz.  ‘Acquaint now thyself with him (God), and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto thee. Receive, I pray thee, the law (instructions) from his mouth, and lay up his words in thine heart. If thou return to the Almighty, thou shall be built up, thou shalt put away iniquity far from thy tabernacles (tents)… 

For then shalt thou have thy delight in the Almighty, and shalt lift up thy face unto God. Thou shalt make thy prayer unto him, and he shall hear thee, and thou shalt pay thy vows. Thou shalt also decree a thing, and it shall be established unto thee: and the light shall shine upon thy ways.’ (Job 22:21-23, 26-28) 

Yes my people, all Eliphaz says there is gospel truth, and since our God and His Word does not change, that means it all still applies to us today. So please let’s grab hold of wisdom, and understanding and sincerely turn to God, and follow Him faithfully from now until eternity, for that’s the only thing that makes any sense in this lost and forlorn world. Much LOVE!

…if you’re not following Jesus…then you’re not doing the right thing…and will suffer the eventual consequences…which won’t be very pleasant…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 April 2015 1 Thessalonians 5:17

 1 Thessalonians 5:17 PRAY WITHOUT CEASING!

Ah Friends, it seems like the ole fella’s Easter Monday celebrations were a bit much for him, because he could not get up at a reasonable time this morning. Hn, hn! But the sad part is that the celebrations weren’t anything big, just a simple gathering of immediate family.

Now can that mean the ole fella is getting too old for even the simple celebrations? Definitely not! And I take great umbrage at anyone who endorses that erroneous idea! (smile)

For here are some great truths; the caffeine is hot and sweet and strong, and our great and LOVING God is still on His throne controlling His universe, which means all is well!

Now why wouldn’t things be okay eh, especially since the Father sent His only Son to be a sacrificial Lamb, to die for our sins, and then rise triumphantly from the grave a couple of days ago, so that our sins could be forgiven, our souls washed as white as snow, and we could be reconciled to Him?

That testimony Friends, I now put to us, should be the uppermost thought in our lives, not only at this Easter season, but all year round! We ought to let it buoy us up, keep us strong and faithful.

Just thinking about what Jesus did for us should raise our spirits to great levels and cause us to want to work diligently and ceaselessly to bring His Word and undying, unconditional LOVE to the heathen, to the unbelieving hordes.

And you know that’s all He really asks of us; to live according to His will and let others see the wonders He works in the lives of those who display total obedience to Him.

And I have a most appropriate and beautiful quote from my One More Day Devotional, Meditations for People with Chronic Illness. Someone in their innate wisdom gave me that devotional long before I even had any chronic illness. (smile) But this quote is attributed to one Hartley Coolidge, for whom I couldn’t find any proper info, although it seems he might have been the son of the famous British poet, Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

Anyway, Hartley is reputed to have made this statement which I’ve shared with you some time before, but it is so noteworthy that it needs to be shared again and again: ‘Be not afraid to pray, to pray is right. Pray if thou canst with hope, but even pray.’

Oh my people what wisdom and godly advice! Prayer should indeed be our number one response to our every problem and our every need. And further to that, here is how the devotional describes prayer. ‘Prayer is a creative expression of my spiritual needs. It offers me a deep sense of personal satisfaction and continuously reminds me of all life’s forces.’

And is that ever so true my people! Prayer is our lifeblood, our lifeline to our Creator, and it should never be broken! We can’t afford to have it malfunction in any way whatsoever, otherwise our lives will lose all semblance of hope, of right and wrong, of faith, of good and bad, of God and the evil one. That means, as our Bit so rightly informs us, we should ‘Pray without ceasing.’

Now it doesn’t mean we should always be audibly praying, but we should constantly have an attitude of prayer about us, which will help us ‘maintain gratitude in the face of adversity.’

That means Friends that prayer is ever so important in the life of a Christian. Even to the extent that Bruh Paul tells Timothy: ‘I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.’ (1 Tim.2:8)

So whatever your geographical position or location, you ought to pray, espousing a pure and truthful life, without disputes and angry tensions.

Meanwhile Cousin Sol tells us in Proverbs that ‘The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.’ (Prov.15:8)

Yes my people, our God delights in the prayers of His people. Nothing warms the cockles of His heart like when His people come to Him in sincere prayer. Remember that is our most important line of communication with Him. Prayer is so important that even Jesus, though being of the Godhead, resorted to it each and every day, in every situation.

Mark informs us: ‘And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary (deserted) place, and there prayed.’ (Mark 1:35)

Jesus made it a habit to pray, to get with God before He began His day, so the Spirit of God would be there to guide and lead Him on a right and true path, give Him the wisdom to make proper decisions.

Oh Friends, so do we also need to come to God in prayer, as early as possible on each day of our lives, so that we can receive the wisdom, strength and guidance to handle our day in a way that pleases God.

And we’ll end with this eye-opening situation, where Jesus teaches His disciples about prayer. The Good Book describes it thus: ‘And it came to pass, that, as he (Jesus) was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.

And he said unto them, when ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, as in heaven, so on earth. Give us day by day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive everyone that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil (the evil one).’ (Luke 11:1-4)

There we have it Friends, the basic foundation of our foundational prayer! So as we go about our earthly pilgrimage in this wild, woolly and wicked world, please let us never forget to keep prayer uppermost in our hearts and lives, for that is God’s desire for us, as well as eternal wisdom on our part. Much LOVE!

…to pray…to pray… and yet to pray…that is the substance of faith…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 July 2014 Matthew 6:19

Matthew 6:19.       Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin, destroy), and where thieves break through and steal.

Aye mih Friends, it’s Thursday, what’s new, what’s on the agenda for today eh? I know that all of us have lofty plans for the day, but just remember, for them to succeed, we have to commit these plans to the Lord, link them with His plan and will for our lives.
 
As Bruh David so wisely advises in Psalm 37 – The true state of the wicked. ‘Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgement (justice) as the noonday.’ (Ps.37:5-6)
 
But first things first my brethren; let’s give our wonderful God a mighty shout of praise and thanks for causing us to see another marvelous day here on earth, for without His goodness and tender mercy, His LOVING-kindness and forbearance, that wouldn’t be possible.
 
So please pray with me, this prayer that Jesus taught us. ‘Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (the evil one): for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.’ (Matt.6:9-13)
 
Yes my people, it’s always best to acknowledge our heavenly Father before we begin asking Him for this and that. It just shows our respect, our reverential awe for His holiness, His spectacular majesty and awesome power, and that we’re not merely interested in whatever good things He might have to offer us.
 
For also remember that He can see, and does read the true motives of our hearts, so any hypocrisy we try to hide from Him WILL BE exposed to His supernatural sight. Consequently, I don’t understand how so many of us still come to God with deceitful thoughts and attitudes, thinking to fool Him. Absolute stupidity!
 
Anyway, that brings us to our Bit, a very significant teaching of Jesus. ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin, destroy), and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt.6:19-21)
 
Oh Friends, what a very instructive and hopefully convincing passage of scripture, that all of us will sincerely and confidently take note of!
 
And the scholars have this to say about those verses. ‘6:19-21. The attention of the believer is directed toward treasures in heaven. The term treasures implies the addition or accumulation of things. The two kinds of treasures are conditioned by their place (either on earth or in heaven).
 
The concept of laying up treasures in heaven is not pictured as one of meritorious benefits but rather of rewards for faithful service, as illustrated elsewhere in the teaching of Jesus.’
 
Yes my brethren, unlike the world’s theory that we should aggrandize ourselves with the worthless physical riches of the earth, Jesus is advising us to store up the favours and rewards for godly and righteous service in heaven.
 
And it’s a proven fact that wherever the choice things of our heart are located, that’s where our attention will be focused. So if the treasures of the world hold the place of highest esteem in our lives, then that’s where our focus, our priorities, will lie.
 
However, if the rewards and riches found in heaven speak more to us, then it’s on heaven and heavenly things that our focus and priorities will be trained.
 
And though the riches of the world are nice to have, running behind them, making ourselves slaves to collecting them is not a very wise idea. For that path only brings immense headaches and pain, in the long run causing us to forsake our friends and families, and most importantly our God.
 
Now let’s look at some scriptures that support our Bit. And the first comes from the pen of wise Cousin Sol, where he unequivocally declares: ‘Labour not (do not overwork) to be rich: cease from thine own wisdom.
 
Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? (Will you cause your eyes to fly on it, and it is not?) For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven.’ (Prov.23:4-5)
 
And who should know the effect of riches my people, better than the richest man ever eh? And it is the gospel truth, as we can see from the many who have laboured long and hard to attain material wealth, then lost it all, in no time at all.
 
And there are also many stories of people who have made and lost several earthly fortunes in a lifetime. So it’s essentially easy to amass earthly riches, but the problem is keeping them.
 
And we’ll end today with those wise, famous and memorable words of Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment (clothing) let us therewith be content.
 
But they that will (desire to) be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful (harmful) lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition (ruin and destruction).
 
For the LOVE of money is the root of all (kinds of) evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith (for which some in their greediness have strayed from the faith), and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
 
But thou, O man of God, flee these things (shun a LOVE of money); and follow after (pursue) righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.’ (1 Tim.6:6-12)
 
Oh my people, that passage of scripture says it all! So please, I implore us, let’s all look seriously today at our attitude towards material wealth, and wisely place it at the nether end of our priorities, not make it the goal of our lives.
 
Instead, let’s make the accumulation of heavenly rewards our raison d’etre, our reason for living. Now that’s the wisdom of everlasting life! Much LOVE!
 
…earthly wealth can easily be lost…and in any case we leave it all behind…when we go to collect our heavenly rewards…so why doggedly pursue it eh…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 April 2014 Psalm 66:19

Psalm 66:1.     But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer.

Oh Friends, blessings and greetings and salutations this Wednesday morning! It’s certainly good to be alive, although all might not be right with us. 
 
And remember that new mercies and LOVING-kindness from our magnanimous God will be filtering down to us all day, so that’s something joyful to look forward to. 
 
Therefore, let us not give in to any negative circumstances that are coming against us. Instead, let us stand strong and steadfast in faith and trust, for we know not what the end of the day will bring, for the Lord has promised to work all things out for the benefit of His people.
 
So if you consider yourself to be one of God’s people, then it’s your bounden duty to hold on to the Lord’s faithful promises. And if that is proving difficult to do, then there is always the option of crying out to Him in prayer, asking for help to handle the situation until He is ready to deal with it. 
 
Remember, prayer is the NUMBER ONE means of communicating with our heavenly Father, and we shun it to our own detriment. And that’s not a trumped up situation, but one established by thousands of years of factual data. 
 
That’s why the author of Hebrews could say with much conviction: ‘Wherefore seeing (since) we are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance) the race that is set before us. 
 
Looking unto Jesus the author (originator) and finisher (perfecter) 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.12:1-2) 
 
Oh my people, do you think the ‘cloud of witnesses’ went through all of their trials and tribulations for nothing? Or that the Father sent Jesus to die for us with no great plan envisioned? 
 
Obviously not! The Lord made us in the first place so that he could have communion with us, which came about through prayer and answer. And even though we fell and became sinful, it was still the Lord’s intention to have meaningful communion with us. 
 
Therefore He sent Jesus to pay the price needed for us to come before Him…again in prayer. Communicating with God has always been, and will always be first and foremost through prayer my people! 
 
That’s why the psalmist could say in our Bit with such utter conviction, even before Jesus came to earth to save us: ‘But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer.’ 
 
That Friends, is also why I’m trying to drive home to us the fundamental importance of prayer in believers lives! For it surely is surprising the number of supposed believers who don’t engage in serious prayer. But how can you call yourself a sincere believer in Jesus Christ and don’t indulge in serious and sincere communication with Him eh? 
 
For how do you think Jesus managed to bear His trials and tribulations on earth? By prayer! Although he was God in the flesh, He still needed the Father’s help to bear the painful tasks set out for Him. 
 
Hear the Good Book on the subject: ‘And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.’ (Luke 6:12) 
 
Oh my brethren, if the Son of God needed prayer down here on earth to help Him, why do we mere mortals think that we don’t eh, and don’t seriously consider it? 
 
And the importance of prayer is further highlighted my people by this episode: ‘And it came to pass, that as he (Jesus) was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.’ (Luke 11:1) 
 
Yuh see Friends, knowing the importance of prayer in their lives, John must have thought his disciples to pray. And according to the scholars: ’11:1. Religious communities of the time customarily had their own distinctive prayers. Perhaps the disciples wanted theirs.’  
 
But whatever the reason, Jesus granted their request, giving them this prayer as an example. ‘After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 
 
Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. 
 
For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.’ (Matt.6:9-15) 
 
Ah mih breddren, yuh see how important Jesus considered forgiveness that after the basic prayer, He went on to talk about it? 
 
That should tell us all something, basically we ought to obey the golden rule: do unto others as you would that they do unto you, for as you do to others God will do to you. And that’s all I have to say for today. (smile) 
 
Now may the Lord bless us and keep us safely under the protection of His powerful presence, and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. Much LOVE!
 
…the best way to ask, seek and knock…is through heartfelt prayer…