Today’s Scrip-Bit   24 November 2021 John 14:18.

John 14:18.     I will not leave you comfortless (as orphans): I will come to you.

One more time unto the breach dear friends, one more time! Yes, we are facing the onslaught of another day in the life, but happily, because it’s not only a day that Jesus made, but because He’s also accompanying us on the day’s adventure! And believe me, every day with Jesus in your life is an adventure, because you don’t know what wonderful escapades He will dream up. 

Yes my brethren, you can’t ask for a better life companion than Jesus! Why? Because He holds our hands when we are afraid or anxious, helps us over the rough spots and reassures us that we can do anything when He is with us. That covers everything! So you are never alone, never on your own when you choose to walk with Jesus. That ought to be very reassuring and comforting, especially in these days fraught with evil and danger. 

Remember some of the last words Jesus said to the disciples before he ascended back to heaven? ‘and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt. 28b) Jesus meant every word too, as He told them earlier on. ‘And I will pray the Father, and he shall send you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever. Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless (as orphans): I will come to you.’ (John 14:16-18) 

That was the promise of the Holy Spirit, another one like Jesus, which would come to indwell them after He left planet earth. So, Jesus is always with us in the form of the Holy Spirit, our helper, comforter, guide, adviser and divine friend! It all broke forth on that fateful Pentecost Day when the Holy Spirit descended from heaven like the ‘sound of a rushing mighty wind,’ and it filled all the house where the believers were sitting waiting for it in Jerusalem like the Lord had told them to. 

‘And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues (languages), as the spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts. 2:2-4) Yes my people, that fulfilled Jesus’ promise when He said: ‘But ye shall receive power, after that (when) the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.’ (Acts 1:8) 

And that directive still stands today my fellow believers, because we were all baptized with the Holy Spirit when we first believed, so that we can go out and make disciples of all the world, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.’ (Matt. 28:20a) So it’s no fluke that we are all imbued with the Holy Spirit. It was Jesus’ plan to be with us through His Spirit all along, so that He could comfort and mentor each one of us individually, since not all would be at the same level, or have the same needs. 

Now I surely like this verse in Acts when Luke talks about believers having all things in common. ‘And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.’ (Acts 4:31) Oh my fellow saints, how I do wish that the majestic power of the Holy Ghost could come upon us with such force to make us speak the word of God with boldness, instead of with fear and anxiety like we’re currently doing! 

And yuh know what, in terms of persecution and such stuff, we have it very easy in our society, so I don’t see why the fear of speaking God’s word if we truly believe it. In some other societies I can understand the fear, because it is met with deathly persecution. But ours is supposed to be first and foremost a Christian bastion! Unfortunately, we have allowed the infidel to turn it around into a chaotic situation, where too many of us are now afraid to proclaim that we are believers in Christ Jesus. 

What would we have done if we were in Bruh Paul’s shoes eh, where he was threatened with beatings, imprisonment and death in many places that he went preaching the Word? But he did not succumb to the fear he must have felt, especially when he had reassurances from the Lord like this one in Corinth. ‘Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace (do not remain silent): for I am with thee, and no man shall set on (attack) thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city.’ (Acts 18:9-10) 

Wow! But it’s the same thing the Lord is saying to us today friends! Don’t be afraid to speak, stop holding your tongues, but speak the word boldly, for He has many people around us to guard and protect us. And as we all know, it’s only the word of God that can save this messy world in which we’re currently living. So, for our children, and our children’s children, let’s up the level of our faith nuh, and get out into the world and boldly confess Christ as Lord and Saviour, as we promised to when we first believed! 

And for those of us who have taken the plunge, and will continue to believe and speak boldly, let’s go home declaring (steups!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful and enviable position in Christ Jesus. Altogether 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!’ 

And please remember the magnificent rewards in store for those who endure unto the end! Much LOVE!

…to live sincerely for Jesus…and boldly proclaim His word…takes the power of the Holy Spirit working in you… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit   20 October 2021 John 14:16.

John 14:16.     And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide in you for ever. 

Another good-looking autumn day in my area! It’s so good when we wake up and see the sun shining along with the spiritual light that we get from Jesus. That just gives us a full house! (smile) So let’s hope that your house is also filled with light this Wednesday morning in the latter part of October, in this crazy year of 2021. And even if you don’t have physical sunlight, just remember that the light from Jesus is more than enough to quell all our darkness, all our fears and anxieties. 

And if you don’t believe me, then listen to this overwhelming story from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, which I believe proves our point. It is titled ‘It Happened to Me.’ Please read with me: ‘It may be a question you’d rather not face. You’ve struggled with it for so long. A resentment perhaps, or a seething rebellion…or an ugly jealousy that keeps churning. There may be someone you haven’t forgiven, despite a whole string of resolutions. Day after day, in fact week after week, you live with no sense of fulfillment, no recharge of joy, no happy expectations. You long for a deeper understanding of God’s will for your life. 

Your heart feels empty, your soul feels weary. Do you wonder if there is a way out? If other Christians have found the secret? Oh yes! Assuredly YES! Let me tell you when! When they were desperate enough to trust the Holy Spirit to do what they could not do. When they were simple enough to trust God’s promise. “I will put my Spirit within you.” When they were willing enough to open their hearts and give it all over to God. Do you wonder why I am so joyfully sure? It happened to me!’ 

Oh friends, what a true and wonderful story! And I hope it soon happens to you if you are suffering from any of the frustrations and human limitations listed above. I can understand, because it also happened to me. But it’s oh so true that when you give it all up to the Holy Spirt, which is in you, if you are a Christian, then the load, whatever it is becomes bearable, because you don’t have to carry it all by yourself. 

Remember, the Lord promised this way back in the Old Testament to the children of Israel through the prophet Ezekiel, saying: ‘A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh (take out your stony heart of sin, and give you a new, obedient heart). (Ezek. 36:26) 

And we know that the Lord keeps ALL of His promises, and after Jesus came, He kept that one. We know that on the first Pentecost day after Jesus ascended into heaven, the Holy Spirit descended upon the believers seated in the upper room in Jerusalem. The Good Book describes it thus: ‘And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:2-4) 

The scholars explain: 2:2-3. On the Day of Pentecost God provided two symbols of the Spirit’s presence, the wind, which was associated by the Jews with the Spirit (Ezek. 37:9-14; John 3:8) , and the fiery tongues which divided and rested upon each one, showing that the Spirit’s baptism included ALL. The purpose here for the sign gift of tongues was not to make possible the hearing of the gospel but to seize the attention of all, so they would listen.’ And from that time forth, all those who believe and place their trust in Christ Jesus are imbued with the Holy Spirit to lead, guide and comfort them. 

Yes friends, those are some of the things the Holy Spirit of Christ is supposed to do in our lives, but as with everything else, we do have to LISTEN to Him, if we are to receive the benefits He has to offer. And that’s where so many believers fall down. We either don’t listen to the Spirit’s guidance, or we hear it and don’t follow it, then wonder why our lives are so miserable and muddled. 

Let’s remember some of Jesus words re the Holy Spirit nuh. First, He promised it. ‘If you LOVE me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide in you for ever. Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive , because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him:  but ye know him; for he dwelleth in you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless (as orphans): I will come to you.’ (John 14:15-18) 

Yes my brethren, the Holy Spirit is another comforter, just like Jesus is and was. And unlike the Old Testament, where the Spirit occasionally fell on believers, after Jesus, He indwells ALL believers. He is a constant companion. That’s the Spirit of Jesus in us working on our behalf. And hear Jesus again on the Holy Spirit. ‘But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.’ (John 15:26-27) 

And this note from the scholars follow those verses. ‘15:26-27. The Comforter refers to the Advocate beside us as we bear witness to Christ (cf. 14:15-16) (which we spoke of earlier). The action of the word translated “proceedeth” is “in the process” – “continually proceeds.” The eternal procession of the Spirit means that He continually proceeds from beside, not out of the Father. If the Holy Spirit came out God, He would be less than God. To be more specific, the Holy Spirit not only proceeds from the Father, but also from the Son. 

This means the Father and the Son continually send the Holy Spirit. This in no way suggests the Spirit is less in deity than are the Father or Son. Instead it explains the relationship among the three eternal persons of the Trinity. Illustration: Just as Jesus came to do the will of the Father, so the Holy Spirit is sent to speak not of Himself, but of Christ (cf. 16:13) Application: In this sense the Holy Spirit is the Promise of the Father who has been given to every Christian (Acts 1:4: 2:39).’ 

In plain and simple everyday language, I like to say that the Holy Spirit is the work horse of the Holy Trinity! (smile) He actions the promises and intents of the Father and the Son. So friends, it’s ever important that we consider the working of the Holy Spirit in our lives, if we claim to be believers in Christ Jesus. You can’t be a true believer without engaging with Him. So hopefully from now on, since we have a better understanding of what He’s all about, we will embrace Him more faithfully and consistently. 

Now, let’s go home declaring (yesss!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our most wonderful position in Jesus Christ. Altogether 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!’ 

And let’s not forget, that if we endure to the very end, that future will be even more glorious than we can ask or imagine. Much LOVE!

…to live a full Christian life…one must engage wholeheartedly and faithfully with the Holy Spirit… 

P.S. Sorry the Bit’s so late, but you know…life happens. (smile) Much LOVE!                                                                                                       

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit   24 September 2021 John 14:16.

John 14:16.     And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever. 

Friday, oh Friday, why have you taken so long to come eh? Didn’t you see us struggling to get through this wretched week? But Friday was having none of it. Uncharacteristically, he lashed out. ‘What do you miserable humans expect of me eh? I am only a day yuh know, just like the other six. I can’t speed up or slow down or do anything at all, except go at the pace that my Creator set for me. So please stop this foolishness of praying for me to go faster and get here quicker! And don’t you realize, that if I got here any sooner, it also means that Monday, which you hate, will also get here quicker too? 

Chuh! You mortals are so impatient and lazy! You would do anything to get out of a li’l bit of work! Not only that, but all yuh also blooming unfaithful too, because all yuh have the Holy Spirit of God dwelling in all yuh, the same Holy Spirit who promised to lead and guide you through all the storms and tough times of life. But all yuh can’t wait for Him to do that. In fact, all yuh don’t want to go through no storms or tough times at all, yuh just want the easy life like a bed of roses. But that’s never going to happen nuh, so you all better band yuh belly and prepare yourselves, because it have plenty rough and tough times coming up ahead! 

And sadly, all that Friday says is true. We feel that because our society has reached a certain level of development, life should keep getting easier and easier. But that’s not the reality of the situation, for the higher you rise, in all walks of life, the more complicated and difficult life actually becomes, You have more stuff to look after and more responsibility to face. Please note that the leaders of any organization or society always have more responsibility than the lower members. It’s their responsibility to keep the society or organization running smoothly and progressing along the stated pathway. And that’s definitely not an easy task! 

So this idea we have of rising higher, so that we can live the easy life, is not truly borne out by life at all, since the higher you rise, the harder you have to work to stay at that height, because a whole lot of other lemmings are fighting for your position and what you have. But as Friday so wisely says, we believers in Christ Jesus have the Holy Spirit of God dwelling within us to lead and guide and comfort us throughout our earthly journey. But we must listen to Him and take His advice if we are to prosper and enjoy our days down here. Why do you think Jesus placed such emphasis on the Holy Spirit while He was on earth eh? Because He knew its importance. 

While Jesus himself could only be in one place at one time, the Holy Spirit could be all about, all the time, dwelling and working simultaneously in each believer’s heart. As He told the disciples: ‘If ye LOVE me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever. Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless (as orphans): I will come to you.’ (John 14:15-18) What a wonderful promise my fellow believers! 

And before Jesus ascended back to heaven He met with the disciples and ‘commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which saith he, ye have heard of me. For John (the Baptist) truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence… But ye shall receive power after that (when) the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost parts of the earth.’ (Acts 1:4-5, 8) 

And so said, so done! We all know the Holy Ghost came upon the believers on that fateful Pentecost day, as they sat in the upper room. The Good Book tells it thus: ‘And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’  (Acts 2:2-4)

Yes friends, our mighty God doesn’t do things in a puny way! (smile) And since that day of Pentecost, ALL believers have been indwelt by the Holy Spirit of Christ, enabling them to do and see things that unbelievers cannot do or see. And that’s why our lives can be better and more joyful than the heathen… But we must make the Holy Spirit a major part of our daily living for that to happen, because it does so many useful and wonderful things for us. 

In a nutshell, it comforts us when we are lonely, and helps us to comfort others in their rough times, it leads and guides us when we don’t know where to turn or go, intercedes for us, or reads our hearts when we can’t find words to communicate with our heavenly Father. It’s exactly what it’s called, Our Helper! But we must allow it to help us and not ignore all its warnings and directions like so many of us do. 

And now it’s time to ask the Holy Spirit to help us sincerely come to the Lord in prayer, through our Friday Chant. So as one voice, with the Spirit’s awesome intercession, let’s pray. ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means 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 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, and avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. 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 not forget, that the answers to our prayers will depend on the sincerity of our motives, and the way we keep our promises. Much LOVE!

…there’s no better helper or assistant than…the Holy Spirit of God…                                                                                                                        

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 September 2017 John 14:16.

John 14:16.   And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.

Arise my brethren, it is the Lord’s Day, and we must be trekking to His sanctuary to engage in blissful fellowship with other believers. What a time it will be, with joyful songs of praise and worship, the reading of God’s word, which enlivens our spirit, and words of encouragement and prayer for and with each other. 

But notwithstanding all of that, these are indeed disastrous times in our world, and we need extra comfort from our faith, thus we’ll open this morning with the old hymn ‘Precious Lord, take my hand’ that fits the bill. The song was written in 1932 by Thomas A Dorsey, a black man from Chicago after his wife Nettie died while giving birth to a child (who also died shortly thereafter). Dorsey sang the song for his friend, Gospel singer Theodore Frye, and Frye’s choir sang it the next Sunday at the Ebeneezer Baptist Church. 

So please friends, and fellow believers, let’s offer up the sacrifice of praise from our lips, as we seek comfort from our comforting God. In rich and soulful harmony now, as we feel it down in our very beings. ‘Precious Lord, take my hand, Lead me on, let me stand, I am tired, I am weak, I am worn; Through the storm, through the night, Lead me on to the light: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) 

When my way grows drear, Precious Lord, linger near, When my life is almost gone, Hear my cry, hear my call, Hold my hand lest I fall: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) When the darkness appears And the night draws near, And the day is past and gone, At the river I stand, Guide my feet, hold my hand: (Refrain: Take my hand, precious Lord, Lead me home.) 

Precious Lord, take my hand Lead me on, let me stand, I’m tired, I’m weak, I’m alone; Through the storm, through the night Lead me on to the light Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home (lead me home)’ 

Oh my brethren, there is NONE other than Almighty God who can satisfy that need for reassurance and comfort in our hurting souls! That’s why we need to call out to Him first when terrible times overcome us, for He is our indispensable Healer and Comforter. Listen as Jesus offers assurance to His disciples in our Bit. ‘And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.’ 

Oh friends, what a wonderful Lord and Saviour we have! He knew that He had to go away and that the disciples would be left in the lurch without Him around.  So He made arrangements with the Father to send them another Comforter, like Jesus, the Holy Spirit, that would dwell within them forever. And he continues: ‘Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.’ (John 14:17) 

And the scholars tell us: ’14:17. The Spirit…shall be in you: The ministry of the Holy Spirit, promised to believers of this age, is unique, since it is given to all believers alike, and is permanent (dwelleth, that is “takes up residence”). See verse 23.’  

And we all know that the Holy Spirit made that magnificent appearance to all believers on the Day of Pentecost. Jesus had told them to stay in Jerusalem until the new Comforter came, because they would not have had the parts to go out and do what He required of them. The Good Book describes that momentous event thus: ‘And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord (one purpose, mind) in one place. 

And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:1-4) 

Ah mih friends, our God doesn’t too things in half measures! When He decides to put on a show, He puts on a big one, with all the bells and whistles, not a little Mickey-Mouse event! (smile) But Jesus’ most touching words to me, were the ones He spoke after promising to send the Holy Spirit. ‘I will not leave you comfortless (orphans): I will come to you.’ (John 14:18) 

What care and compassion Jesus shows for those distraught men who had given up everything they had to follow Him, thinking that He would be setting up a new kingdom at that time, only to later learn that He would be killed and then He would go away and leave them…but not alone. That’s not Jesus’ style friends. Once you come to Him, He will ALWAYS be with you: ‘for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Heb:13:5) 

Oh my people, in ending, all I can says is that the best place to find comfort and compassion in times of sorrow, is in the ever-open and ever-LOVING arms of Jesus. He has already offered the 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 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)  

Friends, it doesn’t get any better than that. But please remember, YOU have to make a serious decision to go to Him to find succour. It won’t just fall in your lap. Much LOVE!

…on a comfort scale of 1-10…Jesus is 11 plus…