Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 November 2019 Psalm 65:2.

Psalm 65:2.    ​O thou that hearest prayer, unto thee shall all flesh come.
 

Come Monday morning, I’ll be up and about with the rising sun, doing my Lord and Saviour’s work, because I know how important it is. His business of saving the world, of reconciling it to the Father is the most important job we disciples, we ambassadors of Christ have to do. Remember His Great Commission: ‘Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt. 28:19-20) 

Well that command still stands today friends, so let’s grab the bull by the horns this first day of the new workweek and get busy nuh, fulfill our bounden duty with diligence and excellence. And yes, because of our human nature, some of us do need a li’l push, some encouragement to get up and get going. But we have just the right medicine for your ailment this morning, it’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn; a cry to our great God for help in handling our current rough situation. So altogether now, let’s sincerely float this prayer up to heaven, where Christ is waiting in the wings to intercede with the Father for us. 

‘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!’ 

Awright precious people of Christ, yuh feel it working? Yuh feel the power of the Holy Spirit, working in you, causing the adrenaline level to rise and your enthusiasm to soar? That’s God’s answer to our sincere, heartfelt prayer! That tells us that God answers prayer my believing brethren; no doubt about it! And today we’re just going to point out a few scriptures which assure us of that undeniable fact.

And we’ll begin with the Lord’s own words of advice to Cousin Sol when he dedicated the temple. ‘If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent (attentive) unto the prayer that is made in this place.’ (2 Chr.7:14-15) 

And the scholars point out right away. ‘7:14-15. While this promise was originally given to Solomon regarding the people of Israel, it is certainly applicable to all who will call on the Lord in repentance and faith. These verses stand as a high expression of God’s LOVING readiness to hear the prayers of a repentant people (cf. 6:37-39; James 4:8-10).’ Yes friends, the first aspect of prayer is coming to God with a sincere and humble heart. Now hear Bruh David from Psalm 65 – God is powerful in nature. ‘O thou that hearest prayer, unto thee shall all flesh come.’ And judging from Bruh David’s record with God, that is the absolute truth. 

And if you don’t believe Bruh David, then listen to Jesus. ‘Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.’ (Matt. 7:7-8) The scholars warn though: ‘7:7-10. The three imperatives ask, seek and knock are in the present tense of the original language, suggesting both perseverance and frequent prayer. Fervent and continual prayer is to be made on behalf of those for whom we are concerned. God promises to answer all genuine prayer (v.8). Everything we need for spiritual success has been promised to us. God leaves us no excuse for failure.’ 

There you have it friends, there’s no excuse for not praying! Jesus also reinforced that last statement by later saying: ‘And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.’ (Matt.21:22) That introduces another essential element of successful prayer; that of belief. You must believe it before you see it! Then John, in his first epistle writes: ‘And this is the confidence that we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us.’ (1 John 5:14) That introduces another aspect of prayer; our petition must fall within the parameters of God’s will; frivolous, greedy and selfish prayers, most likely won’t be answered. 

And we’ll close with some awesome words from the scholars. ‘Prayer. Both Jesus (Luke 18:1) and Paul (1 Tim. 2:1) emphasized the importance of prayer, noting that people ought always to pray. Prayer includes asking and getting answers from God. But it is more than just asking; it is confession, adoration, thanksgiving, and fellowship with God. By its nature, prayer is talking with God. It is the basis of the successful Christian life, and is so important that not praying is considered a sin (1 Sam. 12:23) 

When we pray, we should follow the model prayer that Jesus gave His disciples and address it to our heavenly Father – beginning with adoration, including thanksgiving and confession of sins, making reconciliation with others, praying for our needs and the needs of others, and concluding in Jesus’ name (Matt. 6:9-15; John 14:14).’ 

Now you can’t truthfully say you didn’t know. (smile) So with all of that solid information under our belts, let’s see if we can’t improve our prayer lives nuh, it will be of great benefit to all mankind!  Much LOVE!

…men ought always to pray…and not to faint… (Luke 18:1)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 March 2019 Matthew 4:1.

Matthew 4:1.   ​Then Jesus was led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.
 

Well friends, the ole fella is up much earlier than he would have liked, but that’s because I have to go into the city to check on this ole heart of mine, to keep the appointment I missed during the big snow storm last week. And since I don’t want leave you all bereft of spiritual succour for too long, (smile) I had to get up earlier to write the Bit and get out on time. Last week it was an afternoon appointment, so I had time to palaver, but this week it’s in the morning. That’s how much the ole fella cares about you! Glory to God! 

So what shall we talk about this Wednesday morning, this Ash Wednesday morning, when all the frivolities and sinfulness of Carnival finish eh? I don’t have a clue! (smile) Hope those of you who participated in the festivities, wherever in the world, had a good time and didn’t go too much overboard and thus give the enemy some ungodly purchase in your souls, because it’s very easy to do that when you let your hair down, as so many of us do, at Carnival time. 

But now it’s the season of Lent in the Christian calendar; forty days and forty nights, a reflection of Jesus forty days and nights in the wilderness before He began His ministry and was tempted by Satan, but stood strong in His resolve to do the Father’s work. It’s a time where we hopefully get more spiritual, contemplate the things of God more, get into Bible Studies and spend more serious time with God. 

It’s when fasting and praying and self-examination become a larger part of our lives. The popular action is to give up things we enjoy for Lent. I don’t know if it really makes a difference to most of us, who just do it because it’s the norm, but if it helps to bring us closer to God, then so be it. Now let’s look at what happened to Jesus in the wilderness and how He handled it all. 

The Good Book says: ‘Then Jesus was led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.’ 

And the scholars have a long, involved explanation which I’ll share. ‘4:1. Following His public baptism, Jesus was led up of the Spirit into the wilderness referring to the elevation of the Judean wilderness. The historical setting of the temptation, which was directed against Jesus’ human nature, indicates that this was a literal experience, which He really conquered, not merely a mental victory over His own thoughts. 

That Jesus was tempted of the devil is clearly presented as a fact. The attack against Christ’s humanity was a genuine temptation that would have overcome any ordinary man. However, Jesus was no mere man. As the virgin-born God-man, His divine nature could not sin (cf. 1 Sam.15:29), and this held His human nature in check. Some have objected that the impeccability of Christ (that He was not able to sin) denies the reality of Satan’s temptation. 

Such an objection is meaningless when one remembers that Satan’s rebellion against God has already been defeated in Christ’s atonement, but his rebellion is nevertheless real, even though the outcome of God’s victory is certain. The same is true of the temptation of Christ. One may attack a battleship with a canoe. The outcome of the attack will be certain defeat for the canoe, but the attack is nonetheless real.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, Jesus was indeed tempted of the devil, but did not succumb to that temptation, as the Good Book tells us. ‘And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterwards an hungered (hungry). And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.’ (Matt.4:2-4) 

Yes my people, that temptation was real, and Jesus was there quoting Moses’ words of Deut.8:3, where he reminded the Israelites how the Lord humbled them in the wilderness and made them eat manna so that they could know that He was God, and that bread was not the most important thing in their lives, but His Word. As the scholars put it: ‘The source of bread, is more important than the bread itself.’ Oh so true my fellow believers! 

Before we close today though, I want to share some more of the scholars’ insight into Jesus fasting. ‘4:2-3. Jesus had fasted forty days and forty nights, a remarkable feat of human endurance, indicating the physical strength of the former carpenter. While the three major tests followed this period, other tests evidently had occurred throughout the 40 days (Luke 4:2). 

His real physical hunger serves as the setting for the first temptation by the tempter (Satan). The conditional clause, If thou be the Son of God, indicates Matthew’s purpose for including this record of Jesus’ victory: it proves that He is, in fact, the Son of God.’ 

Yes friends, He was indeed the Son of God, and Satan knew this to be a fact, that’s why He tried to break down His hungry human nature with the temptation of bread, knowing that a great victory would be his if Jesus succumbed. But instead Jesus stood strong and steadfast and rebuked the enemy and won the victory! All praise and honour to our wonderful Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

Now friends, it’s our turn to stand strong and steadfast against the evil enemy! We don’t naturally have all the parts and power that Jesus had, but He’s faithfully promised that through His Holy Spirit, He will empower us to rebuke the tempter when He comes a calling in our earthly lives. And He’ll do just that if we sincerely turn to Him for help! 

Now let’s go home declaring (steups – wrong again) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know our wonderful position in Christ Jesus! Wailing as one now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

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

Ah mih people, it will indeed be so very wonderful in those future times, that our finite minds can’t even begin to comprehend it! Think on it, and let Jesus warm the cockles of our hearts this Ash Wednesday morning! Much LOVE!

…Lent…a time of personal introspection…and a closer look at the kingdom of God…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 October 2018 2 Corinthians 5:17.

2 Corinthians 5:17.    Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (new creation): old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

 

Ah, a rainy Saturday morning, just right for sleeping in! Yeh, woke up to find showers, or rather drizzles of blessings watering the land. And I know that many of you are going to take this opportunity to sleep in this morning, as the mind is saying: ‘Chuh! Forget all the household chores yes! Forget the groceries yes! There’s enough stuff in the fridge for another day!

Snuggle up next to your significant other and enjoy their human warmth, which is like no other warmth in the universe! Just pamper yourself today; rest and relax and smell the coffee gurgling away in the coffee-maker downstairs.’ 

And that ties in quite nicely to our first quote from our friend Anselm, whose quotes we review each Saturday, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow.  He says: ‘You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way.’

Yeh friends, that’s absolutely true! Earthly life is very short in comparison to eternity, so we don’t need to get all uptight and worried, just mosey along confidently and enjoy all the stuff the Lord has placed down here for us to enjoy. 

And that leads us to this next interesting quote: ‘I think being in LOVE with life is a key to eternal youth.’ No doubt about that my brethren! When we LOVE life, it keeps us young and sparkling! We smile a lot, are contented a lot and have much less resentment than those who struggle with life. For it’s really the negative emotions we harbour and display that really drag us down and make us old before our time. (smile) 

Now listen to this quote: ‘You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.’ I don’t necessarily agree with that, because the changes needed are sometimes small and very doable within the existing model. And just look at our current situation, where everyday we have a new model of something; oftimes they are no better than the old one, but inevitably they make the old ones obsolete. 

And look at the amount of different models we have of human societies! People are trying to change them from both inside and outside, but they’re not getting any better. Some of the old models worked much better than the new ones. Look at the French Revolution, and the Communist Revolution in Russia. Neither made life any better. In fact both were more cruel and inhumane than the previous models. 

And there’s much truth in this next quote: ‘People can cry much easier than they can change.’ For sure, for sure! Crying comes much easier than changing because ‘Our dilemma is that we hate change and LOVE it at the same time; what we really want is for things to remain the same but get better.’ What insight into our human nature! 

We all want things to change for the better, but we hate to go through the tough changes that change always brings. As the quote says, we want it to get better while staying the same. That’s because change takes us out of our comfort zone, into one we don’t know, and might not like. But friends, change, whether for good or bad, always means changing something in our lives. 

Look at the butterfly nuh, look at its metamorphosis; how it creeps along like a snail for a while, then sheds its reptile-like skin and suddenly transforms itself into a beautiful butterfly! I’m sure it’s no easy task to shed that skin, but it knows the rewards that will come from making such a painstaking change. 

And so it is with us friends, we all are changed, go through our own metamorphosis, when we come to know, LOVE, and work for Christ. As Bruh Paul says to the Corinthians in our Bit: ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (new creation): old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.’ And that’s gospel truth my people! 

When we accept Christ as our Lord and Saviour we just become entirely different people! We stop living by the carnal lusts of the flesh, by the evil and sinful ways of the world. We are first changed on the inside by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in us, then others gradually see those changes manifested on the outside as the Holy Spirit begins to work Christ-like ways in us. We embrace a totally new way of life; a Spirit filled life. 

As Jesus told the disciples once when they were murmuring about His teaching: ‘It is the spirit that quickeneth (gives life); the flesh profiteth nothing: the words I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.’ (John 6:63)

Yes friends, the flesh is basically worthless, because it eventually dies and returns to the dust from which it was made. However, the spirit lives on forever; either in hell fire and damnation, or in heaven with our Triune God. 

But that distinction can only be made by an earthly decision to accept Christ as our Lord and Saviour. Believe me people, it’s the wisest decision you can ever make in this earthly life, because failure to do so, will bring the worst fate possible to a human soul; eternal separation from Almighty God for ALL of eternity! 

And believe me, that’s a long, long, long…exceedingly long time! So please make that oh so wise decision today nuh; right now, because the Grim Reaper can come calling at any time. And once He comes, it’s too late! Much LOVE!

…don’t put off for tomorrow…what you can do today…it can mean hell fire…instead of heavenly bliss…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 May 2018 John 17:16.

John 17:16.   They are not OF the world, even as I am not OF the world.

Aye friends, it’s a wet one in my area today. And the rain can be so beguiling… Earlier on, for over half an hour, I lay in my bed tossing and turning from side to side, knowing that I was not going back to sleep, especially since my nostrils were all blocked up and my mouth was dry as chip, but yuh think I could get up, as I listened to the gentle rain falling outside? 

No way! There’s just something about the rain that makes you want to stay in bed and curl up under the covers next to your special someone. And don’t forget its potent aphrodisiac properties! (smile) 

And today the Lord pointed me to some stuff I have written here on a piece of paper. I don’t know who or where I got them from, possibly from Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley), but I’m sure we’re not going to like them. They have to do with our behaviour as true and faithful believers in Jesus Christ. 

And they advise: 1. Don’t leap to judgement. 2. Take blame and give credit. 3. Don’t one up people, encourage them. 4. If it hurts say so, but don’t hit back. 5. Pray for your competitors. 

Mamacita! All of that goes against the very grain of our human nature! But that’s the way our Leader and Lord and Saviour wants us to operate in this crazy, selfish and greedy world. That’s how others will know that we’re different from the madding crowd and hopefully come to realize that we have what they’re missing and oh so badly need; the eternal and unconditional LOVE and saving grace of Jesus. 

And as we look back on those five things above, if we’re true to ourselves we will admit that they all play a major part in our lives. We all leap to judgement too quickly, with absolutely no relevant facts at hand. We just see or hear someone and we can spout a litany of things that are wrong with them. 

And when coming to taking blame…Hn! That does not exist in our current society. We’re all about pointing fingers at others and hogging whatever credit there is for ourselves. Oh, and one-upmanship is the name of today’s game. Yuh ever listen to group of people talking about their possessions? 

Each one comes up with something better than the other. And that’s one of the reasons why so many of us are so stressed out and miserable; foolishly, we’re trying too hard to keep up with the Joneses. 

And when it comes to being hurt, we’ll certainly let you know, but the trouble is that we also look for vengeance. But remember the Lord says that vengeance is His, and He will repay. Well I won’t even touch praying for our competitors, because that is definitely out of our behavioural sphere. Oh yes, we’ll pray for them, but for them to go under, not to succeed. 

Oh friends, please remember that we’re supposed to be IN the world but not OF the world; meaning we should not behave as the world does. No wonder Jesus prayed to the Father on our behalf: ‘And now I come to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves. 

I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil (evil one). They are not OF the world, even as I am not OF the world.’ (John 17:13-16) 

Ah mih people, what more can I say eh? Not a whole lot. Jesus prayed that we would not get involved with the world order even though we lived amongst it. That was necessary so that we could tell others about and show by example the good news He ushered into this world. 

And Bruh Paul reiterated the same sentiments to the church at Rome. ‘And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.’ (Rom.12:2) 

Oh my people, we can’t be IN the world, but not OF it, unless we completely renew our minds and bring it into line with the will of God. And the scholars offer this explanation on that subject: Dedication to the will of God. 

‘12:1-2. God’s will refers to His purpose for the life of the believer. It implies His guidance or direction in ALL of life’s decisions. Dedication is an act of surrender or submission to His will for our lives whereby we become a “living sacrifice.” Daily dependence on God results in our transformation into the image of Christ. 

Illustration: When we seek to discern the will of God we must also be committed to doing the will of God as it is revealed in the Word of God. (John 7:17) Application: The believer should evaluate every decision on the basis of biblical principles, knowing that obedience brings God’s blessing. (First Ref. Gen. 22:12; Primary Ref. Rom.12:1).’ 

The long and short of the story my brethren, is that we’re to live the will of God as found in His Word. And the only way we’re going to find out that will is by reading and studying His Word. So let’s get on with it nuh, so that we can all become the ‘living sacrifices’ that our Lord desires. 

Now it’s time to go home letting the world know who and whose we are by declaring our Tuesday Mantra. All together now, in full voice and complete sincerity: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

And the corollary to that: let’s go out and generously share what Jesus has given us. Much LOVE!

…God’s basic wish for us all…to become Christ-like clones…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 April 2018 Nehemiah 1:7.

Nehemiah 1:7.   We have dealt (acted) very corruptly against thee, and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the judgements (ordinances) which thou commandest thy servant Moses.

And then it was Monday once again; but a Monday with a difference; Easter Monday where a fair amount of us don’t have to go to work and we’re still celebrating the miraculous and momentous resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ from the depths of Hades through the awesome power of our omnipotent God! 

What blessed people we are my fellow believers to have such a magnificent and magnanimous Deity as our Creator, Controller and Provider! Give Him some most fitting thanks and praise nuh! 

We have one problem though, some of us have to go to work, so no doubt they will be in a funk, jealous that they have to go out and labour while the rest of us get to stay home and party. Others however, might just be flat out tired and exhausted from their Easter celebrations, so it’s also hard for them to get up and get going. 

But as always, we have the antidote for the Monday morning whatever ails you, namely our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. So let’s belt it out with as much gusto as we can manage nuh, to help our unfortunate brethren who have to go out and labour today. 

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!’  

That was uproarious friends! As usual, you could hear the sore, croaky voices louder than the others, and know that they weren’t going to work, while the soon to be working were barely audible. But that’s just the nature of the human animal. 

Oh, let me apologize for not reminding us of Granny’s serious warning this long, Easter weekend. Sorry, I guess I just got carried away by all the activities myself. But it’s not too late to issue the warning now: ‘Sonny boy, drunk or sober, please mind yuh business!’ 

And that applies to all believers as we celebrate one of the biggest occasions in our Christian faith. It’s a time when we’re liable to let our hair down too much and allow Lucifer and his evil minions to catch us offside. And we don’t want that at all now mih people. So please be careful; give plenty thanks and party hearty, but please mind your p’s and q’s. End of sermon. (smile) 

And today’s Bit is an obscure verse of scripture from Nehemiah’s prayer for Israel when he learned of their sorrowful state back in the homeland. Israel had been punished by captivity in Babylon because of their disobedience to God’s laws. ‘We have dealt (acted) very corruptly against thee, and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the judgements (ordinances) which thou commandest thy servant Moses.’ 

Friends, I believe that right now we’re also holding the short straw, because of the unbelievable sinful ways and attitudes predominant in our current society. And we all need to be seriously praying that the Lord might save us from our shortcomings, for who knows if some of the disasters we’ve been recently suffering are God’s hands at work. 

But I can assure us of one thing, if we aren’t already feeling God’s wrath, then if we continue down the sinful and ungodly path we’re presently travelling, then it won’t be long before we do feel His wrath. For our God does not make promises lightly. What he says He means. 

And here is what He said way back when to the Israelites under Moses, as the consequences of disobedience. ‘But it will come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken  unto (obey) the voice of the Lord thy God, to (carefully) observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee.’ (Deut.28:15) 

And the curses run from verse 16 to 68, while the blessings of obedience only run from verse 1-13. That ought to tell us something friends; that the punishment for disobedience is harsh and long lasting and to avoid it, we need to improve our godliness and righteousness.  We ought to read them for ourselves so that we can better understand the seriousness of our situation.  

And it’s not like there aren’t many examples of societies who got too big for their britches and were eventually cast aside through God’s machinations. Why do we think ours will fare any differently eh? Especially, like Israel, when we were once upon a time God’s poster society for general obedience to His laws and He made us strong with His blessings. 

So friends, this Easter Monday, while we’re celebrating Jesus’ victory, let’s take some time to also ponder our own situation nuh, and see how we can bring our society back into line with God’s law, because our death knell is ringing. Much LOVE!

…he who has ears to hear…let him hear…he who doesn’t listen…will surely feel…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 October 2017 Romans 7:15.

Romans 7:15.   For that which I do, I allow not (I don’t understand): for what I would do (want to do), that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.

Ah friends, it seems like I’m one of those who slept in this October Saturday morn! But mine was not by choice though, I just had no idea of the time. And I went to bed fairly early at that too. I’m trying to go to bed at a decent hour these days… Aren’t you proud of me? (smile) 

That’s because I believe one of my problems is simply not getting enough sleep. The only problem though is when I lie in bed too long, roughly over four hours, my ole back aches like mad when I do get up. But I guess we have to suffer something to gain something better. 

Anyway, I’m up now, and it’s Saturday, so let’s check out some of our friend Anselm’s quotes for this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Hear this first one: ‘A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.’ 

Now that might be true sometimes, but we have to be very careful of what others think we might want, because it just might not jive with God’s will for us. 

That leads us to this one: ‘You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever.’ 

The first part makes sense, but the last part should definitely read ‘put your trust in the One and Only Jesus Christ!’ And if you do that, you certainly won’t do this next quote. ‘Don’t live a limited life.’ 

Yeh mih people, as true believers in Jesus, you will NEVER lead a limited life, because Jesus’ basic philosophy is for his followers to lead a full, abundant and productive life. Glory to God! 

And here is the last quote. ‘Integrity is when our words and deeds are consistent with our intentions.’ And is that ever so true my brethren! 

Unfortunately though, too many of us Christians, in these evil and godless times don’t have much integrity, because our words and deeds are not consistent with our intentions. That’s why so many unbelievers, as well as believers, see us as hypocrites! 

That’s the reason a lot of people, even supposed believers, use for not going to church; they don’t want to join a bunch of hypocrites in praising God. But yuh know what friends, all of us have some hypocritical element in us – not liking someone for some foolish reason, etc. etc. – so when we go to church, all we do, is add one more hypocrite to the bunch! (smile) 

But most of us won’t see it like that. And yes, it’s very possible to have good intentions and do evil deeds, as Bruh Paul declares in our Bit: ‘For that which I do, I allow not (I don’t understand): for what I would do (want to do), that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.’ 

Yeh mih brethren, that’s just the unholy struggle between our two natures; our sinful and worldly one, and our spiritual and heaven-looking other. And as you can see, even Bruh Paul, with all his spirituality, got caught in the battle between those two strong attitudes.  

So it’s not like we are totally immune to the struggle being waged between our two natures. The lure of sin and its vapid pleasures are surely strong, but like a bodybuilder, we have to build our heavenly looking spirit so that it can stand strong and steadfast against our human nature. 

As we saw yesterday, the enemy is always on the lookout to steal our joy and have us feeling guilty and miserable. However, if we do, as the Good Book says, resist the devil and draw near to God, then we’ll usually come out victorious. 

Oh friends, we know that turning away from, resisting the things of the world is not easy, certainly not an easy row to hoe, but as with EVERYTHING else in this life, with God’s help, we can overcome. 

Please don’t ever forget this seminal, foundational, fruit-bearing, productive verse from Bruh Paul to the Philippians. ‘I can do ALL THINGS through Christ which strengtheneth me.’ ((Phil.4:13) 

Yes friends, until we truly believe that and totally incorporate it into our lives, our faith walk will not be as good as it ought to be, and we’ll be doing many more wrong things than we want to do, but not understanding why. 

And sadly, there’s no easy way around the struggle of our two natures. To overcome our natural sinful nature, we just have to gut it out, stick close to Jesus; consistently read His Word, constantly communicate with Him in prayer, and do our best to be obedient to His dictates. 

That means having on our spiritual armour at all times, and continually swinging the mighty, ever-sharp, two-edged sword of God’s Word in the face of the oncoming enemy to keep him at bay. 

Yes friends, to win this battle, we need to keep our wits about us ALL THE TIME, but with God’s help, we can certainly do it. Let’s remember that, and write it indelibly in our hearts, souls and minds, for it’s the foundation of wisdom! Much LOVE!

…ONLY with God’s help…can we win our earthly battles…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 March 2017 1 John 1:9.

1 John 1:9.   If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

And then friends, it was the glorious day of praise and worship; Sunday! The day when we go into the Lord’s sanctuary and exalt and glorify Him as one body, His church, listen to His awesome and inspiring word and leave renewed and refreshed, assured and confident to face another week in this crazy and evil world. 

And as always, we’ll begin with a wonderful rendition of one of our wonderful hymns, ‘Holy, Holy, Holy.’ So let’s offer up the sacrifice of our lips to our heavenly Father with enthusiasm, sincerity and truth. 

‘Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty! Early in the morning our song shall rise to thee; holy, holy, holy! merciful and mighty, God in three persons, blessed Trinity! Holy, holy, holy! All the saints adore thee, casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea; cherubim and seraphim falling down before thee, who wert and art and evermore shalt be. 

Holy, holy, holy! Though the darkness hide thee, though the eye made blind by sin thy glory may not see, only thou art holy; there is none beside thee, perfect in power, in LOVE, and purity. Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty! All thy works shall praise thy name, in earth and sky and sea; holy, holy, holy! merciful and mighty, God in three persons, blessed Trinity!’ 

Yeh mih people, there’s no other God like ours; merciful and mighty; perfect in power and LOVE, one God in three persons, blessed Trinity! That’s why He is the GREATEST! No wonder we need to offer up our praise and worship, our thanks and exaltation, for He rightly deserves it. 

We also need to humble ourselves before Him because He is holy and does not like or overlook sin. 

But in His awesome grace has provided us with an option to be cleansed of the natural evil of our human nature, as our Bit so joyfully tells us. ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’ 

We can’t ask much more than that nuh my fellow believers. He didn’t have to do it, but in His wonderful LOVE and compassion for us, He just couldn’t let us go down to the pit of Hades without giving us a chance to reform ourselves. So here we are with this amazing choice of being able to praise and worship Him and come to Him in humility and ask for forgiveness. 

Wow! No other supposed god gives their worshippers such a mind boggling option! That’s why we’re foolish if we don’t accept it and live up to it. Now hear the words of Bruh David as he talks about the blessed of forgiveness from Psalm 32. 

‘Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord imputeth not (does not charge his account with) iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile (deceit). When I kept silence, my bones waxed (grew) old through my roaring (groaning) all the day long. For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture (my vitality) is turned into the drought of summer.   Selah.  

I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord, and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin.   Selah.  For this shall every one that is godly pray unto thee in a time when thou mayest be found: surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come unto him. Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about (surround me) with songs of deliverance.   Selah.  

I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye. Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must he held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee. Many sorrows shall be to the wicked: but he that trusteth in the Lord, mercy shall compass him about (surround him). Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.’ (Ps. 32:1-11) 

Oh friends, how wonderful it is to be touched by the power of the Lord’s forgiveness! And here is what the scholars have to say about that psalm. 

‘Psalm 32. The psalm describes the blessedness of forgiveness as no other does. This is the theme of especially the first five verses, which include the happiness of the forgiven man (vs.1-2); the physical and psychological effects of unconfessed sin (vs.3-4); and the simple remedy of confession to obtain God’s forgiveness (v.5). On this basis David can experience prayer (vs.6-7); divine instruction (vs.8-9); and personal witness (vs.10-11).’ 

Yeh friends, what a great way to end this series of messages on confession of sin and the Lord’s faithfulness to forgive and cleanse us! So please, let’s not forget the wonderful avenues that are open to us when we sincerely serve and worship the Lord God Almighty, He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Let’s not be foolish and ignore all that He’s provided for us in His grace and tender mercies. Then we can rejoice and shout with joy! So let’s be wise and acknowledge Him nuh,  lean on Him and make our way through Him, for that’s the wisdom of the ages! Much LOVE!

…to forgive is wonderful…but to receive forgiveness is even better…

 

 

 

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