Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 April 2021 John 3:16.

John 3:16.     ​For God so LOVED the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

So friends, we have at last come to that sorrowful day of mourning in the lives of Christ’s followers! A day that we contrarily call Good Friday. But the truth is, that day, two thousand years ago, was one in which a most horrific crime was committed, the inhumane abuse and eventual crucifixion of Jesus Christ on an old, rugged cross on the hill of Calvary on the outskirts of Jerusalem. And the unbelievable thing is that this took place, less than a week after they had welcomed Him in such a wonderful manner on Palm Sunday, hailing Him as their Saviour, their Immanuel, with Hosannas to the Son of David! 

And it’s not so much the crucifixion itself that was most hurtful, but the shameful manner in which the dastardly act was perpetrated. As the song, ‘The Old Rugged Cross’ puts it, that Cross was and still is ‘the emblem of suffering and shame.’ But the most important point of that day is the purpose behind Christ’s crucifixion, why He allowed Himself to be so abused and demeaned. Hear His fateful words on the subject as He talks about there being one fold and one shepherd in His kingdom. 

‘Therefore doth my Father LOVE me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it up again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.’ (John 10:17-18) Yes friends, as Jesus said, they didn’t take His life from Him, He gave it to them, willingly, so that a world of lost sinners could be saved, so that our horrible sins could be forgiven by a just and righteous God the Father, otherwise we would be heading directly to eternal damnation! 

But Christ’s sacrifice on that old, rugged cross gave us another option, a most wonderful one, that of reconciliation with our Creator! And all God’s children declared a loud and grateful: ‘All praise to Jesus and His atoning death on our behalf!’ And what’s so great about Jesus’ sacrifice, is that the Father didn’t force Him to do it, but He did it willingly, because of His LOVE for the Father, and knowing the Father’s great LOVE for us! And that’s why we call it Good Friday, because the good of salvation, of atonement, of sin debt relief in full was embedded in, and born of that fateful act! 

Oh, glory be mih people! What a mighty and unselfish act! And that’s why we cherish that old, rugged cross, though it’s the ‘emblem of suffering and shame,’ the manifestation of an act that could only be described as ‘sufferation!’ And yuh know what friends? We ‘LOVE that old cross with the dearest and best, for a world of lost sinners were saved.’ And we’ll keep cherishing that old, rugged cross ‘till my trophies at last I lay down. I will cling to the old, rugged cross, and exchange it some day for a crown.’ 

Oh my fellow saints, what a wonderful Saviour Christ is! Who else would have spilled His divine blood on a rugged, man-made cross for a bunch of ungrateful sinners eh? NOBODY! In fact, nobody else possessed the ability to pay for the sins of a lost and fallen world, just the sinless Son of God. And God LOVED us so much, despite the bunch of disobedient ingrates we had become, that He broke His own heart and sent His Son to earth to sacrifice His life on our behalf, so that we could have an opportunity to be reconciled to Him. Now if that isn’t real, true LOVE,I don’t what is nuh. 

As Jesus so graciously puts it. ‘For God so LOVED the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’ (John 3:16) Yes precious people, all we need to do is believe in Christ, and we become saved, sanctified, justified, forgiven, indwelt by His Holy Spirit, with our name written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, that means eternal life with Christ! Now what could ever be better than that eh? Absolutely NOTHING! 

So those of us who simply refuse to accept Jesus as Lord and Saviour are just fooling ourselves, laying down a most unwelcome path to eternal damnation with that ole fool Satan, when we could have a most excellent journey through eternity with Christ. But as the saying goes, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink. And that’s the same way with us hard-headed, stubborn sinners, who believe in the now pleasures of sin, and don’t think of the serious then consequences of our ungodly behaviour. 

Oh yes, there are always consequences to sin, because our righteous and just God can’t stand sin, can’t stand disobedience, and the pleasures of sin only last for a fleeting moment, while the consequences can last a lifetime, even an eternity. So my people, there’s no better day to embrace Christ and all that He stands for, than on this Good Friday, when He selflessly gave His life, His all for us, so that we could be filled with new and eternal life. 

And do we ever need His saving grace in this time of pandemic and strife that’s engulfing our entire world. So please, let’s go to Him in prayer nuh, the medium that He’s set out to communicate with us. So as one strong, sincere, but humble voice, let’s offer up our Friday Chant. ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. Yuh know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and the racial strife causing. We not accustomed to that kind of life Lord, and it really telling on us. And we know we can’t handle it on our own, that we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the sure and wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, so that we can avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to also bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. It’s also a good opportunity to introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion because of the way we, your faithful believers, handle the situation. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

Now let’s go out and show the Lord that we are indeed faithful believers nuh, by handling the situation in a godly manner! Much LOVE!

…weeping may endure for a night…but joy comes in the morning…Easter Sunday soon come…

P.S. I didn’t forget the ordinary workingman’s spiel, but he was so angry today because the province wide lockdown that starts tomorrow, has cancelled his long awaited return to work, and he bluntly refused to talk to us. Them’s the breaks! (smile) Much LOVE!

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 March 2021 Matthew 21:11.

Matthew 21:11.     ​And the multitude said, This is Jesus, the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.

Oh friends, it’s Palm Sunday! That awesome day two thousand years ago, when Jesus rode into Jerusalem, triumphant on a donkey, like the King He was, and still is, thus fulfilling the prophecy of the prophet Zechariah to the people of Israel. ‘Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy king cometh unto thee: he is just (righteous), and having salvation; lowly (humble), and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.’ (Zech. 9:9) 

Yes my people, the kings of the earth usually came to bring devastation and destruction, but our King came to bring peace. Now that doesn’t mean He’s a soft-touch, or a lightweight, because that was just the foreshadowing of His coming in glory with all the host of His saints and angels, riding upon a white charger, with a sharp sword coming out of his mouth, with which He would smite the nations, trod them down like a winepress with the fury of God’s wrath and rule them with an iron fist for a thousand years. (Rev. 19:15) 

So please don’t think that Christ’s final coming will be a sing-along. The first time He came in humility and sacrifice, the next time it will be with glory and power. He created the world with His Word, (Heb. 11:3), He’ll most likely also destroy it with His Word, that would then become that two-edged sword, quick (alive) and powerful, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow…’ (Heb. 4:11) 

Ah mih bredrin, let’s remember that our majestic Lord and Saviour is anything but a pushover, and the many who think that they can get away with evil and sin, will find out, too late though, that they won’t. Let’s hope that we are not amongst that unfortunate lot. And it seems like the ole fella has gotten ahead of Himself. But that’s what the excitement of Jesus does to you! (smile) So getting back to the matter in hand, Palm Sunday, let’s sing praises and honour to our wonderful Jesus. 

And today’s hymn is a most appropriate one, titled ‘Hosanna in the Highest.’ It’s exactly what the crowds were chanting that first Palm Sunday. So altogether now, in sweet, sincere harmony, in an up-tempo version, let’s raise our song to high heaven. ‘Hosanna, Hosanna; Hosanna In The Highest, Hosanna in the Highest! Lord We Lift Up Your Name With Our Hearts Filled With Praise Be Exalted Oh Lord Our God Hosanna In The Highest. Holy, Holy, Holy Is The Lamb Of God, Holy, Holy, Holy Is The Lamb Of God. Lord We Lift Up Your Name With Our Hearts Filled With Praise Be Exalted Oh Lord Our God Holy Is The Lamb Of God. 

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus Is The King Of Kings, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus Is The King Of Kings! Lord We Lift Up Your Name With Our Hearts Filled With Praise Be Exalted Oh Lord Our God Jesus Is The King Of Kings. Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna In The Highest, Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna In The Highest! Lord We Lift Up Your Name With Our Hearts Filled With Praise Be Exalted Oh Lord Our God Hosanna In The Highest. Lord We Lift Up Your Name With Our Hearts Filled With Praise Be Exalted Oh Lord Our God Hosanna In The Highest. Be exalted Oh Lord our God Hosanna in the Highest…. Hosanna in the Highest…’ 

Yes my fellow believers, most appropriate praise and honour to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Now, I don’t remember where I got all of this upcoming information, but I believe it is the truth. (smile) ‘The phrase hosanna in the highest appears only twice in the Bible, once in Matthew and again in Mark, during the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. The word hosanna comes from a Hebrew word meaning “save now” or “save us, we pray.”  In the Hebrew Bible it is used only in verses such as “help” or “save, I pray” (Ps. 118:25). 

It is applied in numerous verses of the New Testament including “Hosanna; blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord” (Mark 11:8), “hosanna in the highest” (Mark 11:10); “hosanna to the Son of David” (Matt. 21:9). In that context, the word Hosanna seems to be a “special kind of respect” given to the one who saves, saved, will save or is saving now. If so Hosanna means “a special honor to the one who saves”. The old interpretation “Save, now!”, based on Psalm 118:25, does not fully explain the occurrence of the word in the Gospels as a shout of jubilation, and this has given rise to complex discussions.’ 

And yuh better believe that there will be complex discussions on the Word of God, right up to the day Jesus returns! So what was all the hurrah about that first Palm Sunday eh? Let’s hear what the Good Book has to say nuh. After Jesus told two of His disciples to go to a nearby village and bring and ass and its colt they would find there, (Matt. 21:2-3) the disciples did as He commanded. 

‘And (they) brought the ass (donkey), and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set him thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strewed (spread) them in the way (road). And the multitude that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest. And when he was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this? And the multitude said, This is Jesus, the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.’ (Matt. 21:6-11) 

How moving a picture and story my people! The Jewish people thought that their Messiah had eventually come, and He did come, but not to take them from under the stranglehold of the occupying Roman army, as they had been led to believe. That’s why on the following Friday, a different spectacle took place. It wasn’t a joyous one, because everybody was then screaming for Jesus’ head: ‘Crucify Him, Crucify Him’ the masses cried. The same ones who a few days before were singing His praises. But that’s the nature of mankind. 

And we do have to forgive them because they didn’t know better, didn’t have all the facts at their fingertips like we do today. And most likely, in their place, we would have behaved the same way, so onerous was the Roman rule. In any case, let’s celebrate today, Christ’s triumphant entry into His capital city. Next week, will be time enough for sadness. (smile) 

And we’ll close with this very interesting footnote. “Hosanna in the highest” is used when we acknowledge Jesus for His ultimate sacrifice and what it means for us and mankind as a whole. This may not be something we often say out loud, but we can think it in our minds and feel it in our hearts in times of worship.” What awesome words of wisdom my brethren! So let’s do just that today nuh. Much LOVE!

…we can’t think or talk about Jesus…without LOVE and worship…in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 March 2015 Matthew 21:10

 Matthew 21:10.    And when he was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this?

PALM  SUNDAY!

Well Friends, today is Palm Sunday, the first day of one of the most important weeks in Christianity – Holy Week.  It’s the day that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ made His triumphal entry into the holy city of Jerusalem, riding on a donkey. And thus it is a very important day for Christians to go to church to worship Christ and fellowship with each other.

It’s a preview of things to come. The first time, He humbly enters Jerusalem on a lowly donkey, but the next time…the next time… Oh my people, Jesus will be coming in might and majesty, as Lord of Lords and King of Kings, sitting astride a snow white charger, that’s snorting and impatiently stamping its feet, anxious to join the fray, the impending battle for world supremacy.

Ah mih breddren, this day also shows how frail and fickle and foolish humans can be, and are so easily led astray by those with the power of the mouth; the gift of the gab. Why do I say that? Because on that first Palm Sunday, the populace of Jerusalem worshipped and glorified Jesus, but a week later they were crying out to crucify Him, all because their leaders incensed them to do so, for the leader’s private purposes.  

Sadly Friends, the same thing is happening in our world today; a large amount of people are being led astray on numerous fronts by their leaders, not for the benefit of the people, but for the selfish and greedy purposes of those in power. Is this misuse and abuse of power ever going to end?

Who knows? But it will only end when we raise up righteous and godly rulers and hold them to account, instead of the parasites who now feed greedily on the fears, foibles and wealth of the people, and rob and steal with impunity.

But that’s a sermon for another day. (smile)  Today we’re featuring Palm Sunday, so let’s focus on that. And please note Friends, that his day was prophesied hundreds of years before Jesus’ time by the prophet Zechariah, when he proclaimed to Israel: ‘Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just (righteous), and having salvation; lowly (humble), and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.’ (Zech.9:9)

And the scholars offer this information. ‘9:9-10. The ass (donkey) was an animal of peace. The kings of the earth come to bring destruction and devastation; Israel’s King comes to bring peace. The prophecy was fulfilled when Jesus made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem (Matt.21:4-7; Mark 11:7; Luke 19:38; John 12:14-15).’ 

Yes Friends, centuries later, Jesus appeared on the scene, and on this fateful day, set His sights on Jerusalem. So let’s see what happened nuh. The gospel of Matthew tells it thus: ‘And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethpage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, Saying unto them, go into the village over against (opposite) you, and straightway ye shall find an ass (donkey) tied, and a colt with her: loose (untie) them, and bring them unto me.

And if any man say aught (anything) unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them; and straightway he will send them. All this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Zion, behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek (humble), and sitting upon an ass (donkey), and a colt, the foal of an ass.

And the disciples went and did as Jesus commanded them. And brought the ass (donkey), and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set him thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from trees, and strewed (spread) them in the way (road).

And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord, Hosanna in the highest. And when he was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this? And the multitude said, this is Jesus, the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.’ (Matt.21:1-11)  

Ah Friends, what a carnival-like day, an atmosphere of celebration that must have been eh, with everybody rejoicing to see their prophet, their Messiah being kingly paraded through their streets. But as we said earlier, the euphoria didn’t last very long, for some five days later they were crying out for His head, for Him to be crucified.

Now here is some info from the scholars, re those verses. ’21:1-9. This event is traditionally known as the triumphal entry, when Jesus officially offers Himself to the nation of Israel as her long-awaited Messiah. However, in many ways it was far from a triumph, for the day ended in Jesus’ public prediction of His rejection by His own people. (See Mark 1:1-10; Luke 19:29-39; John 12:12-15).

Bethpage was a village near Bethany, about a mile east of Jerusalem and apparently hidden from it by the summit of the Mount of Olives, which was the hill on the east of Jerusalem. The quotation in verse 5 is a combination of Isaiah 62:11 and Zechariah 9:9, taken substantially from the Septuagint, the ancient Greek translation of the Old Testament.

Hosanna is the transliteration of a Hebrew term meaning “please save,” and occurs in 2 Samuel 14:4 and Psalm 118:25. From the following verse of this psalm the acclamation Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord is taken. Riding on the colt of an ass marked the official entry of Israel’s kings. Thus Jesus arrives in the full declaration of His kingship.’

There we have it my brethren; lots of info on the Palm Sunday scene, so please let’s ponder and study it and thus increase our knowledge of Jesus and His Word, and consequently also increase our faith and belief in Him, for He is truly the ONLY WAY through which salvation can be had.

So let’s be wise and embrace Him and all that He stands for RIGHT NOW, for tomorrow might just be too late. Much LOVE!

…the zenith of wisdom is… surrendering one’s self to Jesus Christ…accepting Him as your Lord and Saviour…your ticket to eternal life…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 April 2014 Matthew 21:9b

Matthew 21:9b.    Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord: Hosanna in the highest.

The trumpet sounds: Spah na na na na na! The gates open – and the triumphal entry begins: in rides our wonderful Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ on a magnificent charger, just a prancing and dancing down the paved streets of gold, lined with palms and cedars of Lebanon!
 
Our conquering hero is dressed in splendid robes befitting His exalted position. A crown of gold and precious jewels sits perfectly on his head, while the scabbard containing His mighty sword dangles from His waist. It’s a picture of pure magnificence, of pure kingship!
 
A radiant smile spreads across His handsome face as the highly exuberant crowds cry out: ‘All hail the King of Glory! Jesus Christ, the Son of God; before whom all knees must bow and all tongues confess that He is Lord indeed!’
 
And at that unforgettable greeting, our glorious Redeemer raises His right hand and waves it in a beatific greeting.
 
The angels have a hard time keeping the crowds at bay, while Jesus and His legions march down the main street of Jerusalem, victorious over the foolish and fallen ingrate Lucifer – forever! 
 
Oh forgive me Friends, in my overwhelming exuberance, I jumped ahead to the Second Coming of our Saviour, arrayed in full splendour and glory as the true King of Kings and Lord of Lords! I’m so excited, looking forward to that day so much, that I let my emotions run away on me. (smile) But it sure is a marvellous picture though my brethren, and one we can definitely look forward to sometime in the not too distant future.
 
Today though, we’re celebrating His first triumphal entrance into Jerusalem some two thousand years ago, not yet as a conquering hero, but as a lowly and humble preacher on the verge of miraculous doings, to fulfill that ‘which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Zion, behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek (lowly), and sitting upon an ass (donkey), and a colt, the foal of an ass.
 
And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them. And brought the ass, and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set him thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strewed (spread) them in the way (road).
 
And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest. And when he was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this? And the multitude said, This is Jesus, the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.’ (Matt. 21:4-11)
 
Yes my brethren, that is how it was on Jesus’ first heralded entrance to Jerusalem, a rather low key affair in comparison to what His Second entrance will be. But it served its purpose, spread His name around some more, got people talking, wondering, filling them with expectant faith and hungry hope, just the way we are today; eagerly looking forward to the next time.
 
That’s because the next time there will be no reversal of fortunes, there will be no fickle and fearful people to change their minds about Jesus and sit idly by or enjoy His demeaning treatment and eventual crucifixion at the hands of the cruel Roman soldiers, so assiduously engineered by the greedy and politically corrupt Jewish elite. But that first Palm Sunday though was Jesus’ day, when the people really seemed to rally around Him.
 
However, listen to a couple of interesting points raised by the scholars. ’21:1-9. This event is traditionally known as the triumphal entry, when Jesus officially offers Himself to the nation of Israel as her long-awaited Messiah. However, in many ways it was far from a triumph, for the day ended in Jesus’ public prediction of His rejection by His own people. (See Mark 11:1-10; Luke 19:29-39; John 12:12-15).
 
Bethpage was a village near Bethany, about a mile east of Jerusalem and apparently hidden from it by the summit of the Mount of Olives, which was the hill on the east of Jerusalem. The quotation in verse 5 is a combination of Isaiah 62:11 and Zechariah 9:9, taken substantially from the Septuagint, the ancient Greek translation of the Old Testament.
 
Hosanna is the transliteration of a Hebrew term meaning “please save,” and occurs in 2 Samuel 14:4 and Psalm 118:25. From the following verse of this psalm the acclamation Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord is taken, Riding on the colt of an ass marked the official entry of Israel’s kings. Thus Jesus arrives in full declaration of His kingship.’
 
And all God’s people gave a rousing and joyful shout of ‘Praise the Lord, our King cometh!’
 
Yes my fellow believers, today is one of the many red letter days in the celebration of our great faith, so please let’s give it the true attention it deserves, by going to the Lord’s House and celebrating it with others of the same ilk. 
 
And we’ll end with an interesting word from Jesus as He denounces the hypocrite scribes and Pharisees. ‘For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.’ (Matt.23:39)
 
Yes Friends, we can all look forward with great pleasure to that awesome day! Meanwhile, enjoy today’s blessings with plenty praise and thanksgiving! Much LOVE!
 
…oh to be wrapped up in the warm and LOVING arms of Jesus…nothing to it compares…