Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 May 2016 Joel 2:28.‏

Joel 2:28.   And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.

Welcome to another brand new day in the life friends! It means that God still has great plans for us to accomplish, other wise He would have taken us home. 

Now we got through Monday with a smile, so Tuesday should be even easier, especially when it abounds with new mercies and blessings from our wonderful Father in heaven. 

And even if the physical state of your day is rainy, or cloudy like mine, just remember that that physical aspect doesn’t really matter that much, because we ALWAYS have the brilliant spiritual light of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ shining in our hearts. Glory to God! 

And since today is Tuesday, let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with plenty verve, sincerity and truth. All together now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen.’ 

And that’s the gospel truth my people! What the world says and does, doesn’t define us. We are the beloved children of God! That’s who we are. And NOBODY can take that from us! 

Please remember that. Let’s write it indelibly in our hearts, souls, minds and bodies. We are the beloved children of God! Never forget it! 

But please remember too that those great privileges – a child of God, and a friend of Jesus – also carry a great responsibility; sharing Christ’s LOVE with the world. We cannot be true believers or faithful Christians until and unless we are doing that. 

Oh I know I’m preaching to the choir, (smile) but sometimes even the choir needs preaching to. Now let’s get to our Bit. ‘And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.’ 

Yes friends, we’re continuing with the Pentecost story, another great day in the annals of Christianity! Yesterday we began looking at Simon Peter’s great sermon on that most momentous day, and we’ll continue with the same today. 

After quoting the prophecy of Joel and tying it into the Pentecost situation, he then declared: ‘Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of (attested by) God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know. 

Him being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken and by wicked (lawless) hands have crucified and slain: Whom God hath raised up having loosed (destroyed) the pains (birth pangs) of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of (held by) it.’ (Acts 2:22-24) 

Hey people, just imagine Peter pontificating to that crowd nuh. Then he went on to quote Bruh David from Psalm 16:8-11, where he talks about the Lord not leaving his soul or Jesus’ in hell. 

‘Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulcher (tomb) is with us unto this day. Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne (Ps.132:11); 

He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell (Hades) neither his flesh did see corruption (Ps.16:10). This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we are all witnesses. 

Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear. For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, 

The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, Until I make thy foes thy footstool. (Ps.110:1) Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.’ (Acts 2:29-36) 

Wow friends, Peter is surely on a roll! Now here are some explanations from the scholars. ‘2:22-36. The main point of Peter’s sermon is to prove that Jesus is both God and the Messiah (v.36). Peter seeks to prove this through Christ’s miraculous works (v.22), His resurrection (vv.23-32), and His sending of the Holy Spirit (vv.33-35).’ 

And some more scholarly explanations: ‘2:27. Hell is the word Hades and does not refer to the eternal lake of fire but to the intermediate state of the Old Testament dead. In the New Testament the term also refers to the grave. Peter states that David’s words of Psalm 16:10 are a prophecy concerning the immediate resurrection of the Messiah, of whom David is a type.’ 

Ah mih people, the Day of Pentecost was indeed a red letter day in the history of Israel, also in the annals of Christianity, marking the true beginning of the body of Christ, His church. 

So please, as we go about our earthly business today, let’s contemplate the miraculous events that took place on that momentous day in Jerusalem, some two thousand years ago, and let’s also contemplate the part that the Holy Spirit has played, is playing and will play in our own lives, for that is indeed the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!

…the workhorse of the Holy Trinity…the Holy Spirit…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 May 2016 Psalm 107:29

Psalm 107:29.    He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still.

So how goes it this beautiful morning eh, my fellow believers in Jesus Christ? I do hope that it is going well, but as usual, if it isn’t, then let me remind us that there’s no need to fear or be worried. 

We just have to take it all to Jesus, lay it at the foot of the cross, and He will take our burdens and instead offer us His comfort and His wonderful peace that surpasses all understanding. 

Remember His Great Invitation: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek (gentle and humble) and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt.11:28-30) 

Yes friends, there’s no better invitation than that in the entire world! And if we’re wise, we’ll gladly take it whenever times become overwhelming. 

And if you’re in a full-blown storm this morning, then here is some more good advice from Gramps Schuller (Robert H Schuller) from our Hour of Power Devotional, to help you weather it. It’s titled ‘When I Face a Storm.’ I believe I’ve shared it before, but when it’s good, it’s always best to wheel and come again. (smile) 

So please pray with me. ‘You never promised, Lord, that I would be forever sheltered from stormy times in my life. You have promised that the sun will outlast the storms. You issue the grand command from outer space and the renegade storm clouds break up, scatter, and flee like hoodlums furtively racing from the streets, back to their hidden lairs in some forbidding alley. 

The bright stars come out to laugh again, like little children returning once more to safe streets for happy play. The sky clears. A huge, yellow moon sails once more calm and serene through the silent skies. 

Even as you restore peace after the storm, so will you bestow a renewed calm to my troubled mind through your peace-instilling presence that is surrounding me now. Your quiet and calming spirit is flowing within me now. My fear is gone! Thank you, Lord! Amen.’ 

Ah mih people, let’s hope that whatever fear we were holding is now gone and the calm and peace of Jesus is now controlling our hearts, minds, bodies and souls, like He promised. 

And since today is Tuesday, let’s further bolster our faith by declaring our Tuesday Mantra with lots of hope, vision and sense of purpose. 

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

Yes friends, that’s such an important declaration and distinction, one we need to carry with us at all times. For we are indeed God’s children, and no one can take that away from us. 

But on the other hand, we also have a responsibility to behave like children of God, so that the world can see what He’s like, through the living examples of our lives. We need to have the fruit of God’s Spirit showing brightly through our godly behaviour. 

And just in case we’ve forgotten what’s the fruit of the Spirit, let’s refresh our minds. ‘But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness). Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.’ (Gal.5:22-23) 

Oh my brethren, those are the things the heathen ought to see in our lives! That’s the only way we can ever make a good and fruitful impact on them. All our words are meaningless unless and until we back them up with true action! 

That brings us to our Bit, taken from Psalm 107 – God’s wonderful works to the children of men. But first let’s set the scene. ‘They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. 

For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble. They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wit’s end (all their wisdom is swallowed up). 

Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, and he bringeth them out of their distresses. He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then they are glad because they be quiet; so he bringeth them unto their desired haven.’ (Ps.107:23-30). 

Yes my precious people, the same way the seafarers cry out to God in times of storms on the sea, the same way we ought to cry out to our heavenly Father when the vicissitudes of life, our ever-changing circumstances, overwhelm us. And as promised, He will calm the storms and bring us safely to the haven of His LOVE.  

Oh friends, there’s none other like our great God! That’s why the psalmist so wisely advises: ‘Oh that men would praise (give thanks to) the Lord for his goodness (LOVING-kindness), and for his wonderful works to the children of men! Let them exalt him also in the congregation of the people, and praise him in the assembly of the elders.’ (Ps.107:31-32) 

There’s nothing more I can say friends, except to implore us to do as the psalmist and Jesus wisely advise: before anything or anyone else, turn to your omnipotent and merciful God in times of trouble. Much LOVE!

…why turn to impotent man in times of trouble…when we have an omnipotent God to turn to…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 April 2016 James 1:23

James 1:23.   For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding (observing) his natural face in a glass (mirror).

Oh friends and neighbours, would you believe that yesterday afternoon, around 5 o’clock, the ole fella was outside catching some rays, working on my tan, making some natural vitamin D! Oh all praise and glory be to our wonderful God! 
It was actually around an abnormal 23 Celsius yesterday, although with a strong wind. We haven’t seen temps like that in the northern climes in over six months. Hn! And truthfully, I don’t believe we’ll see them for another couple months yet on a regular basis. 
Today however, has also dawned bright and sunshiny, but with eventual temps only around 15 or so. But that’s more like normal, and much better than the cold wintry stuff we’ve been experiencing so far. So you can come and check out my tan anytime…and there are no tan lines. (smile) 
Now let’s check out our Tuesday Mantra or the Prayer of the Beloved. Let’s declare it loudly and sincerely. ‘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.’ 
Oh my fellow believers that’s indeed who we are – the beloved of God and friends of Jesus! 
And I heard a testimony on that recently from Cousin Bobby (Bobby Schuller – Robert Schuller 111) grandson of Gramps Schuller (Robert H Schuller), who now runs the Hour of Power T.V. Programme. He said that when he began saying that prayer everyday, he began to become more secure and self-confident in his Christian walk. 
So if it could help him, it can surely help many of us who just don’t feel that confident in who we are and whom we belong to. So it might indeed be worthwhile to pray it everyday. 
And now I want to share a quote from the well-known American Rabbi, Bernard S Raskas (1924-2010). He is reputed to have said these interesting words: ‘Any real progress in the tangled world of emotions must be made by the individual. Each of us must hold the mirror to our own soul and gaze intently at what we see there.’ 
And that’s oh so true, my brothers and sisters in Christ, especially in our Christian faith, because it all begins with an individual relationship with Christ. The church, the body of Christ is made up of individual believers, who look to Him for salvation and eternal life. 
But unless, and until, you have made that individual decision to follow the Lord and Saviour of mankind, you’re simply not a part of His flock and won’t have any of the benefits provided therein. 
And it’s not only in our Christian walk that we need to check ourselves in the mirror, but also as a normal human being. There are decisions to be made, and reactions to be framed, whether positive or negative, and in the natural course of life, a lot of this is based on our individual approach. 
So though we live in a plural society, much of that plurality is based on individual thoughts, feelings and sentiments. Consequently, whatever we do or think or feel, will have a substantial bearing on our lives and the lives of those around us.
That’s why it’s ever so important for us to make wise, Christian based decisions, controlling our natural emotions with self-discipline and circumspection. 
That brings us to our Bit, which reflects what we’ve been talking about. Let’s listen to it in its full context. James solemnly declares: ‘But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding (observing) his natural face in a glass (mirror). For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.’ (James 1:22-24) 
Yes my people, that’s oh so true of many of us. And it’s not that hard to do either, when we are wrapped up in the things of the world, as so many of us are. 
We can either look at ourselves in a real mirror and consider the good and kind person that we are, or think of our wonderful Christian persona, then shortly thereafter forget it all and go out and behave unwisely and against all our Christian principles. 
Friends, the pull of the flesh in this evil and ungodly world is great, and we have to be ever so careful of falling into the traps that Beelzebub designs and lays before us.
That’s why James continues: ‘But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed (in what he does).’ (James 1:25) 
And the scholars offer this explanation of that verse. ‘1:25. The perfect law of liberty probably refers to the teachings of Christ and His apostles. This law is perfect since Christ brought to completion the teachings and work of the Mosaic Law (c.f. Matt.5:17-20; Rom.10:4). 
It is a law of liberty because it frees from the principles of sin and death (Rom.8:2-3); Gal.5:1,13). James also describes it as the royal law (2:8) for it is the law of the Messianic King (c.f. Gal.6:2).’ 
Ah mih breddren, it would be real nice and comforting if you’d check out all those references. I just did and found them all quite interesting and they helped me to better understand what we’re talking about. 
Now I’m not going to hold my breath thinking or expecting that that’s going to happen, (smile) but one can surely live in hope, which our faith so greatly and wisely espouses. 
And on that note of hope, we’ll end today. (smile) Now may the Lord bless and keep us all my people, and guide us wisely and safely along our earthly pilgrimage, until we come to finally rest in Him, on that wonderful day! Much LOVE!
…our outer man ought to reflect…the true Christian principles of our inner man…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 March 2016 Deuteronomy 31:8

Deuteronomy 31:8.   And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.

And then it was Tuesday my friends – Easter Tuesday! Now that means it’s also time for the great spectacle of goat races in Tobago! 

Yes my brethren, it’s time to get us down to Buccoo and enjoy an afternoon of goat races and great partying at possibly the only stadium in the world built to host that sport. Only in T&T, you say! 

They had a small offering while I was there the other day and it was really enjoyable. I hadn’t seen goat races in many a year. I vaguely remember the last time as being completely wasted and partying down the place with a friend’s sister on the verandah of a house near the track. 

Ah Lord eh! Those were the days! In those times they had individual parties at houses that surrounded the track. But now, progress has come along, and it’s held in a brand new state of the art facility, with all the amenities; food, drink, music, etc, all in one place. So don’t hesitate to check it out. (smile) 

And since Today is Tuesday, it’s of the utmost importance that we declare our Tuesday Mantra, with sincerity, joy and a true sense of belief and purpose. 

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

Yes my fellow believers, that’s exactly who we are, the beloved of God; a fact that NO ONE can take away from us. So as many of us go back out to work after the long Easter weekend, let’s hold that thought, that fact, close to our hearts, and let it empower us as we go about our day, doing the Lord’s work. 

Let’s remember too that Jesus is our friend, in fact our BEST Friend; one who sticketh, stands closer with us than a brother, as Cousin Sol says in Proverbs 18:24. And basically, all we are called to do is share His LOVE with the world. Now that shouldn’t be too hard to do, should it? (smile) 

Unfortunately though, our world today is not interested in true LOVE, the agape, the brotherly kind of LOVE that Jesus desires to share. But friends, we’ve got to keep on keeping on and pursue our vocation to LOVE with a strong, never-ending zeal, for that’s what makes us true believers and followers of the triumphantly risen Christ! 

Now here is something from our One Year book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. This one is titled ‘At Such Times.’ 

And it says: ‘God, there are times In the midst of heartache and heartbreak When there is no comfort, no solace Anywhere at all. There are times When in my crumbling state of mind I feel I can no longer endure – Not for a day, not even an hour. 

It is at such times, O God That I draw heavily upon Your unfathomable LOVE. At such times I implore Your transforming peace. At such times I live By the power and promises Of a Father who cares infinitely more Than I can begin to grasp or comprehend. Today, dear God, is a “such time.” 

Oh my precious and beautiful people of God, I’m sure that resonates so truthfully with us all, because there are times in all our lives when we feel lost and alone, and Almighty God is the ONLY One who understands our situation, and the ONLY One who can provide us true solace and comfort! 

So let us never be afraid, ashamed or whatever, to call upon our heavenly Father for His peace and LOVE, because He’s always there, ready and able to help us. 

And the Biblical Promise for that poem is also our Bit for today: ‘And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.’ 

Yes friends, our God made that promise through Moses oodles of years ago, and it still stands even to this day! 

And all God’s people loudly declared: ‘O heavenly Father, thank You for Your promises! We don’t always put our full trust in them, but deep down we know that they are solid, solid as a rock, and that You will never renege on any of them, because You are a faithful and true God. 

Please help us to stand more securely on the many promise You have made to us over the years, for that is the only way we will ever successfully handle the evil and ungodly world that now surrounds us. This we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.’ 

And one of the best-known instances of our God going before His people and neither forsaking nor failing them is this passage from Exodus when the Lord took the Israelites out of bondage in Egypt. 

‘And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light, to go by day and night. He took not away the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.’ (Ex.13:21-22) 

And please note the last verse there friends. I believe the writer added it to assure us that God did keep His promise for the long haul. And we’ll close with these words from the scholars re the pillars of cloud and fire. 

’13:21. This glowing cloud was the shekinah glory of Yahweh, which later filled the tabernacle (40:35) and then Solomon’s temple (1 Kings 8:10), and finally departed from the temple and the city just before the Babylonian captivity (Ezek 8-11). 

This “glory of the God of Israel” will not return to Israel until the second coming of Christ (Ezek.43:1-7), at which time the glowing cloud will once again cover God’s earthly people (Is.4:5). It guided the people through the wilderness, assured them of God’s presence, and protected them from the Egyptians (cf.14:19-20).’ 

Oh friends, what a faithful and mighty God we serve. Please never let us forget that. Much LOVE!

…the God of Israel…faithful and true…is His name and nature… 

P.S. Please excuse the lateness. Just too much late night Easter Monday partying. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 March 2016 Philippians 1:29‏

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

And then it was Tuesday…wonderful Tuesday! 

And amidst all your difficulties and troubles you ask, what’s so wonderful about it eh? 

Well for one thing you’re alive. That’s more than can be said for a lot of people. Most likely you also have a roof over your head, food on your table and a paying job. Well that means you’re better off than the majority of the world of some 7 billion souls. 

And for another you’re a Christian, a believer in the One and Only Son of God, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Wow! That alone makes it a wonderful day friends, because working for Jesus is always filled with unexpected and interesting events! 

And since it’s Tuesday, before I forget, (smile) let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with true sincerity and much enthusiasm nuh. 

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

And isn’t that the gospel truth my brethren? It certainly is! We’re not defined by what the dark and sinful world says about us, because we know that we are the beloved of God, and that no one can deny or take away from us. Oh glory to God my fellow believers! 

The problem though is that we don’t seem to take our designation as God’s beloved children seriously enough, we’re still anxious, doubtful and fearful, and thus continue letting the world’s unwise and often untrue and foolish systems define us. It’s time to break that oh so restrictive chain my people! 

And the only way to do that is by sincerely and faithfully taking hold of what our wonderful God has said about us, and the magnificent things He’s done and continues to do for us each and every day. 

In other words friends, we need to truly believe! Without true belief and faith, we’re lost, caught up in the worries and troubles of the world and our circumstances. But when we’re truly walking with, and living for Jesus, we don’t let our circumstances overwhelm us; we rise above them, of course with Jesus’ help. 

As I keep reminding us, being a true and faithful believer is no easy or simple matter, but it is certainly doable and enjoyable if we rest all our burdens and fears on His strong and healthy shoulders, as He tells us in His Great Invitation, Matthew 11:28-30. Please look it up if you don’t know it…and even if you do know it, please read it again so it can revitalize your spirit. 

And yesterday we saw how Bruh Paul exhorted the Philippians to steadfastness in Christ’s gospel, through proper conduct and behaviour in unity and oneness of mind. ‘And in nothing (no way) terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token (proof) of perdition (destruction), but to you of salvation.’ (Phil.1:28) 

And I repeated that verse because I want to share an explanation from the scholars. ‘1:28. One of the ways in which the readers’ proper conduct benefits the gospel (v.27) is mentioned here: not being terrified by their adversaries. The lack of intimidation is a twofold sign: (1) to unbelievers it is evidence of their lost condition; (2) to believers it is an assurance of their salvation.’ 

And that my brethren is one of the problems with present day Christians; we are terrified by our adversaries, plus have adopted the selfish behaviour of the current world; everything being, ‘I, me and mine, first person singular.’  If we weren’t, we’d be standing up strong and facing them and not allowing them to take God out of our society as they are so blatantly doing. 

Oh my people, Jesus died that we could have a good and abundant life, and we definitely can’t live that kind of life if we’re afraid and/or selfish. That brings us to the next verse in Bruh Paul’s exhortation, our Bit. ‘For unto you it is given in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake.’ 

Yes friends, we have the obvious privilege of not only living the good life through Christ, but also suffering with Him. It’s a two-pronged situation, though in our selfishness and fear we expect it to be simply all good times. 

When Jesus came to die for us, He didn’t have only good times, but also plenty rough ones, especially His crucifixion, which we’ll celebrate in a few days. So why should we have it all good eh? 

And the scholars provide an interesting explanation on that passage. ‘1:29. For reinforces the assertion that the proof of the believers’ salvation, provided through their courage in persecution, comes from God. 

This justification lies in the fact of the Philippians being divinely granted the dual privilege of believing in Christ and suffering for Him. Thus the assurance of their salvation is from God, just as is their suffering for Jesus, for the latter was the occasion providing the former.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, our salvation was provided by Jesus’ suffering, let’s never forget that, and therefore let it help us to stand up strong in His name and do His will, regardless of the tough circumstances we occasionally face, for salvation is greater than anything the world can do to, or offer us! 

And all God’s children gratefully and joyfully declared: ‘Glory Hallelujah! All power and glory be to the Lamb that was slain for us!’ 

And we’ll end with these immortal and most appropriate words of Jesus from the greatest sermon ever preached; the best laid out philosophy of life ever promulgated, the Sermon on the Mount. 

‘Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which went before you.’ (Matt.5:11-12) 

Yes my brethren, persecution will follow us simply because we believe in Jesus, that’s a fact we cannot ignore or deny since it happened to so many prophets, including Jesus, meaning we’re in excellent company. 

But by the same token, when we stand up strong during the persecution we’re blessed and are storing up rewards in heaven. No, it’s definitely not easy, but the only way to overcome it is by keeping our focus on the rewards in heaven, rather than the persecution here on earth. 

So friends, though it might be somewhat on the rough and tough side, let’s go out and put that into practice today nuh, so that our lives can be more blessed, and Jesus’ message of, and free gift of salvation can be more widely spread abroad and accepted, for that’s our bounden duty. Much LOVE!

…stand up, stand up for Jesus…the trumpet call obey…till every foe is vanquished…and Christ is Lord indeed… 

P.S. Unfortunately, late nights breed late mornings. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 March 2016 Judges 5:3

Judges 5:3.   Hear,  O ye kings; give ear, O ye princes: I, even I, will sing praise to the Lord God of Israel.

So friends, it’s Tuesday! No big deal. You handled Monday with great aplomb, great self-confidence, so no reason why you can’t do it again today. In fact, Tuesday should be a piece of cake! (smile) 

Yes my people, with Jesus, before, behind and by our side, we can handle ANY and EVERY thing that comes against us. As Bruh Paul so steadfastly and faithfully declared – no it’s stronger than a declaration – as he confidently proclaimed: ‘I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me.’ (Phil.4:13) 

And that my people is gospel truth! So let’s not forget it, but have it prime us as we go out to meet each new today. And since today is Tuesday, let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra. I didn’t forget it this week though. (smile) 

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

Oh my fellow believers in Christ that is oh so true! We are definitely not defined by what the world says or thinks about us, but by our wonderful position as children of, and thus the beloved of Almighty God, Jesus’ friend and brother! Now what can be greater than that eh? Absolutely nothing! 

When we are inextricably linked, tied up with the awesome Creator of the universe and all therein, we are in the best hands possible! 

So let’s not fear, doubt, or be anxious as we go about our daily tasks, let’s walk with a spring in our step, a smile both in our hearts and on our faces, remembering that we are completely surrounded by the incomparable and indestructible protection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

And all God’s beloved children gratefully declared: ‘Thank You heavenly Father for LOVING and caring and looking after us as well as You do! We know we don’t deserve much of it, but that’s just the kind of wonderful God and Father You are. 

Today, we give You the praise and glory that You so rightfully deserve, and will continue to do so while Your awesome breath of life remains in our frail and fragile bodies. This we pray in Jesus’ Name. Amen! 

Oh precious people, since we’ve been talking up the wonders of our God so much, I decided that we should just make it a day of praise; thus our Bit. 

‘Then sang Deborah and Barak the son of Abinoam on that day, saying, Praise ye the Lord for the avenging of Israel (when leaders lead in Israel), when the people willingly offered themselves (volunteered). Hear, O ye kings; give ear, O ye princes: I, even I, will sing praise to the Lord God of Israel.’ 

That comes from the song of Deborah and Barak, after the Lord had helped them to defeat their Canaanite enemies, while Deborah was the judge of Israel. Yuh see friends, women have been leaders, and strong ones too from time everlasting! 

Now here are a few verses of praise that I randomly chose, because there are so many. Listen to Moses’ song. ‘Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth. My doctrine (teaching) shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distill as the dew, as the small rain upon a tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass: 

Because I will publish (proclaim) the name of the Lord: ascribe ye greatness unto our God. He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgement: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.’ (Deut.32:1-4) 

Yes friends, that’s our God that Moses is talking about. And who knew God’s greatness, saw and did His awesome work more than Moses eh? Possibly only Jesus. So Moses definitely knows whereof he speaks. 

Now here are some excerpts from Psalm 21 – Praise for victory. Bruh David opens the psalm with this proclamation: ‘The king shall joy in thy strength, O Lord; and in thy salvation how greatly shall he rejoice! Thou hast given him his heart’s desire, and hast not withholden (withheld) the request of his lips.   Selah…. 

For thou hast made him most blessed for ever: thou hast made him exceeding glad (joyful with gladness) with thy countenance (presence)…. Be thou exalted, Lord, in thine own strength: so will we sing and praise thy power.’ (Ps.21:1-2,6,13) 

Again friends, Bruh David experienced God’s great power, LOVE and compassion, as well as His chastening, so he too knows what he is talking about first hand, not through mere hearsay. 

And listen to these words of truth and glory from Psalm 47 – God is the King of all the earth. The sons of Korah unhesitatingly tell us: ‘O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph. For the Lord most high is terrible (awesome); he is a great King over all the earth… 

Sing praises to God, sing praises: sing praises unto our King: sing praises. For God is the king of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding.’ (Ps.47:1-2,6-7) 

Ah mih people, how much better off we would be eh if we just sang and gave more praises and attributed more glory to our great God! But sadly, in this past generation we’ve become such a hard-hearted, stubborn and godless society that God no longer looks down on us with the joy and grace that He once did, when we were truly subservient and obedient to His will. 

And we’ll close with these immortal words from Bruh David from Psalm 65 – God satisfies the thirsting soul. ‘Because thy LOVING-kindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee. Thus I will bless thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in thy name. 

My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow (the best) and fatness (abundance); and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips: When I remember thee upon my bed and meditate on thee in the night watches. Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.’ (Ps.63:3-7) 

Oh friends, there is absolutely no better way to live than giving praise and thanks and glory to Almighty God for all that He has done for us in His awesome power and might and His overflowing LOVING-kindness!  

Please, please, let’s get back to that way of living nuh, for it is indeed the path of heavenly wisdom. Much LOVE!

…be thou exalted, O God above the heavens…let thy glory be above all the earth… (Ps.57:5) 

P.S. Sorry that the Bit is somewhat late, but I’m back to my old habits…late going to bed. (smile) But as they say, better late than never. Much LOVE!

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 March 2016 Psalm 77:13‏

Psalm 77:13.   Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary (holiness): who is so great a God as our God?

Aye friends, who says our God isn’t the greatest and brings interesting things and events into our lives eh? Earlier on this morning, after I finished my devotions on the patio, I went out for a short walk on the grounds near the sea shore as I usually do. 

This morning though I saw a white gentleman preparing to fish from the bank close to the reef with a small rod. I’ve seen a few people fishing around the area before but never spoke to them re their catch. 

Today though I asked the fellow, who turned out to be Hungarian, if he catches anything there. He said yes, barracuda and cavalli, and that he’s been coming there for a couple years now because of what he can catch. 

I was most surprised to hear that those big and ofttimes dangerous fishes could be caught so close to my water hole, especially with the small rod and thin line that he had. (smile) We talked for a few more seconds and I continued walking while he turned his attention to his fishing. 

Some five or so minutes later, on my way back, we spoke for a few more seconds, then all of a sudden he shouts ‘I’ve got one…and a big one too!’ 

I could see the tension on the line, and a couple of times while he fought it, saw the silver fish jump out of the water into the bright sunshine. It did look fairly big. He fought it for another few minutes, trying to not let it get caught on the rocks near to the shore. 

I stood up there watching with interest and hearing him say he wished he had someone to go down on the rocks and bring it in. Then like he got a sudden brainwave and asked me to hold the rod, while he went down on the rocks to get it. I held the rod and watched as went down the rocks and collected the fish, which put up a little struggle before he could get it out of the water. 

And I can now boast that in my first fishing expedition, I helped catch a three-foot barracuda weighing some thirty pounds or so. (smile) It was amazing that after he had it on the grass and extricated the hook from its mouth, it was still alive. 

Now my friend was really excited because this was amongst the biggest fishes he had ever caught. But what happened next surprised me; he took up the fish, went back down into the water and tried to release it. When I asked why, he claimed that he was only a catch and release fisherman. If the fish was still alive, he usually put it back into the sea. 

And wonder of wonders, when he couldn’t get it back into the sea because the water was just washing it back up on the shore, he lifted it up, all the time commenting on how big and heavy it was, then he walked about thirty yards further down to a small coral bay area, went into the water with the fish and stayed there for the approximately ten minutes or so, that it took the fish to regain its strength and swim away. 

Meanwhile a fellow working on a house nearby was also amazed at the size of the catch, and promised to come and fish down there. In his mind though, he would already have been at home having the oil heating in the frying pan, while he cut up the fish and seasoned it. 

The fisherman’s wife, whom I believe he had called on the phone, had also come along, and he had her take some pictures. She was telling him to keep the fish and give it to his local fishing partner. But he insisted that once it was alive, he would try to send it back to the ocean. 

And having finally done that, he came up on the shore, soaking wet, from head to foot, and explained that a few years back some dramatic experience happened to him, and since then, he doesn’t kill anything, possibly beside mosquitoes. His wife kept saying that he was crazy, because he did that sort of thing all the time. 

Finally, some half an hour or more after I’d begun my walk, we said goodbye and went our separate ways. And I guess that’s my excitement for the day, although after that I had to go into town, Scarborough, fight a couple traffic jams, to get some local bush from one of my friends to boil for my cough. 

I haven’t drank any bush medicine for umpteen years now, but I do remember my mother filling me with them either for the cold or for cooling, what we now call detoxifying the body. (smile) 

Wow! That’s taken up so much time and space, we don’t have much left for other stuff. So let’s get right into our Tuesday Mantra, or Prayer of the Beloved. 

All together now with heartfelt 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.’ 

Now friends, that’s the way we ought to think of ourselves, each and every day of our lives. What the world says and thinks about us is immaterial, because we are God’s beloved children and Jesus’s friend. Glory Hallelujah! 

What could be better than those two things eh? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING my people! And until we stop allowing the dictates and thoughts of the world to shape our lives, we’ll be forever held in bondage by the enemy, when that is totally unnecessary. 

Now let’s take a quick gander at our Bit. ‘Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary (holiness): who is so great a God as our God?’ 

Yesterday we looked at the first part, today I had intended to get into the second half; ‘who is so great a God as our God?’ And as we all know, my fellow believers, the emphatic answer to that is ABSOLUTELY NO ONE! 

Yes friends, there is no supposed deity or otherwise who is mightier and more powerful than the Creator of our universe and all therein, including mankind! How could there be eh, when He spoke it all into existence eons ago, and still controls it? 

And we’ll end today with God’s own words as spoken through the prophet Isaiah when His people Israel were fooling around with worthless, powerless idols. He says: ‘To whom will ye liken me, and make me equal, and compare me, that we may be like?’ (Is.46:5) A very good question that friends. 

Then later on He declares: ‘Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me. Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.’ (Is.46:9-10) 

Now my brethren, let’s ponder those words of indisputable truth today nuh and write them indelibly in our hearts, minds, souls and bodies, for that is indeed eternal wisdom. Much LOVE!

…all other supposed gods are lifeless and powerless…ONLY our great God Jehovah is alive and kicking…full of power and majesty…

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