Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 March 2019 Philippians 2:8.

Philippians 2:8.   And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Well it’s here right early again! And no, I’m not talking about Sunday, but Daylight Savings Time where we push our clocks ahead one hour and screw up everybody’s timetable. So at some time this morning it was two o’clock, then all of a sudden it became three o’clock! Wonder how many people remembered to do that before they went to bed and are going to get up late for church and work? 

Then somewhere down in November we revert to Standard Time, setting the clocks back an hour, and again screwing up everybody’s timetable! One minute it’s two o’clock, then the next it’s one o’clock! Steups! I’ve yet to see anyone who likes the inconvenience, but the powers that be say they think it helps, so we do it. 

We are one of a number of fewer and fewer areas who are doing it still. You then have to unnecessarily readjust to the time difference in different parts of the world. Even in Canada, not all the provinces do it. And they don’t suffer because of it! Chuh! 

But let’s not get too worked up about that this Sunday morning nuh, let’s go to the Lord’s house and fellowship; have a good time as we give Him praise and thanks, cleanse our souls, renew a right spirit within our hearts and say the Lord be praised! And as always, we begin our praise and worship with a heartfelt song. Today’s song is one we all know, titled ‘Because He Lives,’ written by the Christian writing tandem of Gloria and William Gaither. 

And since the lyrics are ever so true my fellow believers, let’s do them justice nuh, let’s allow our voices to ring out powerfully and in sweet sincerity as we joyfully declare (wrong again): ‘(Chorus: Because He lives, I can face tomorrow Because He lives, all fear is gone Because I know He holds my future And life is worth the living Just because He lives.) (Repeat) 

God sent His Son they called Him, Jesus He came to LOVE, heal and forgive He lived and died to buy my pardon An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives. (Chorus) How sweet to hold a newborn baby And feel the pride and joy he gives But greater still that calm assurance This child can face uncertain days because He lives And then one day I’ll cross the river I’ll fight life’s final war with pain 

And then, as death gives way to vict’ry I’ll see the lights of glory and I’ll know He lives Because He lives, I can face tomorrow Because He lives, all fear is gone Because I know He holds my future And life is worth the living Just because He lives And life is worth the living Just because He lives And life is worth the living Just because He lives.’ 

Ah mih people what truthful words of solace, joy and assurance! And it’s all possible just because our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ lives! Glory Hallelujah! Just imagine that nuh; because He is alive and well we can face tomorrow without any fear, and knowing that He holds our future in His mighty hands, life is worth living again! 

Oh friends, give Him much thanks and praise nuh, because He didn’t have to do what He did for us, He could have even gone against the Father’s wishes. But no, as the Good Book says: ‘And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.’ 

Yes my people, Jesus selflessly sacrificed Himself for us on Calvary’s cross. Imagine that nuh: the Son of God becoming man and giving His life for a bunch of ungrateful sinners, all because His Father asked Him to. Yuh think those nails that pierced Jesus’ body didn’t pierce the Father’s heart too? And believe you me, every lash and awful pain He felt, the Father felt them too. But that was the ONLY way the Father could save us sinners and retain His righteousness and justice. 

The wages of sin is death, which means somebody, some sinless body had to pay to set us free, and Jesus was the only sinless soul besides the Father.  Sacrificing His only Son for us, just goes to show how much the Father LOVED us back then, and still LOVES us even now, even though we are such ingrates! 

Yes friends, it was all based on LOVE! Jesus came to LOVE, to heal and forgive. He lived and died to buy my pardon. And an empty grave is now there to prove that my Lord and Saviour Lives! Glory be my people! He won the victory over hell, death and the grave, and rose to everlasting life, so that those of us who believe in Him, will die, but also rise again and experience life eternal with Him! 

And for that unstinting, willingly given obedience, the Good Book tells us: ‘Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of (those) things in heaven, and (those) things in earth, and (those) things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.’ (Phil.2:9-11) 

Mama Yo! Yes people, the Father honoured Jesus with the greatest honours at His disposal! The only thing He didn’t lavish on Him was His own throne! And the Father has promised to also lavish us with honours and rewards if we remain steadfastly obedient to His will. So there you have it, the choice is ours to be obedient or not. And you can’t say you didn’t know. (smile) Much LOVE!

…trust and obey…for there’s no better way…to be happy in Jesus…than to trust and obey… 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 April 2018 James 1:2.

James 1:2.    My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials).

At last friends, at long last, some of the ice that’s covered the ground from the ice storm a week ago has finally melted…Yay! And we can now see some of Mother Earth’s dirtyish brown grass with specks of green thrown in for good measure. Glory be! 

But not all of the ice has melted, there are still several patches of it all around. And from my kitchen window I can see about three or four solid boulders of ice lying at the side of the road, and the big lump of ice that clogged the entrance to my lane when they cleaned the main road last week is still there, blocking traffic and making it difficult to enter the lane. 

But God is good! Let’s remember that, and a few weeks from now when spring has finally sprung and the leaves and beautiful blossoms are out in all their glory, we’ll look back and laugh at this inconvenience. Hn, hn! Yeh mih people, it’s a good thing the Lord blessed us with short memories. 

However, it’s Saturday, so let’s turn our attention to some of this week’s quotes from our friend Anselm, as he aspires to inspire us to a better tomorrow. Here is the first one: ‘Learn to value yourself, which means fight for your happiness.’ 

Oh my people, too many of us don’t value ourselves highly enough, we have a poor self-image, thus others take advantage of us. Therefore we need to raise our self- image through Bible study and assertive action if we want to control our lives and thus our happiness. And the next quote is basically about the same thing; taking control of our lives. 

‘Don’t let other people decide whether you are going to have a fantabulous or bad day, make that decision yourself.’ Again, too many of us allow others to run our lives and decide what kind of day we’re going to have. That is counter productive friends. We have to learn to stand on our own two feet and make those kinds of decision for ourselves, otherwise we’ll always be at the mercy of others. 

And the final quote says: ‘If you are not willing to risk the usual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.’ In other words, take a chance! And that is gospel truth! If you never take chances and just stay with the tried and true, the same old, same old, then the same old, same old is all you’ll ever get. 

Our society and our Christian faith was built on our forefathers and the early Christians taking chances, even when it meant running afoul of the authorities and thus possible loss of life. And as we Christians know, whenever we step out to do something for Christ, the enemy will most likely come against us and try to prevent us from doing it. 

But because of Christ’s promises and His power to enable us to do anything, we don’t have to shy away, but press on regardless. And we do that through faith. But faith doesn’t just come like by wishing it. On the contrary it’s something we have to build, through constant hard work and adversity. 

And Cousin Bobby (Bobby Schuller- Hour of Power) says that ‘Faith is not a leap, but an enduring daily trust that God can do the impossible in your life.’ And that’s no lie! Each and every day we awaken we have to learn to keep the trust in God we earned the day before, and to build on it, so that tomorrow it will be even stronger. That’s how we build faith my brethren – from day to day, through whatever trial comes our way. 

That brings us to our Bit, some rather interesting words from James, Jesus’ brother, in his epistle to the Christians dispersed around the world. ‘My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials).’ Now who wants to find trials joyful eh? Nobody! But friends, that’s the only way we’ll grow in faith. 

As James continues: ‘Knowing this, that the trying (testing) of your faith worketh (produces) patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire (complete), wanting (lacking) nothing.’ James 1:3-4) Yeh friends, as long as we are believers, our faith will always be tested, and we need to stand fast so that we can grow. 

And the scholars got it right: ‘1:4. The natural response to adversity is to escape it. But God uses trouble to mature His people.’ Oh, we certainly know it’s rough, and do try to escape, but much to our dismay, that’s just part of the life of faith we’re trying live. 

The scholars further tell us: ‘1:2-3. In this epistle on Christian living, James opens with a most crucial topic: the trials of life. These verses describe the various testings – whether from the world and Satan, or from God – into which godly Christians fall (Gr. peripipto). 

These “negative” experiences are to be accepted with great joy, not for the sake of the trial itself but because of the positive work God can accomplish through the testing….It is not merely one’s presence in such trials but one’s victory over them that brings spiritual growth and maturity. Those Christians whom God can use the most are those whom God has bruised the most.’ 

Unfortunately mih people growing in spiritual faith is not easy, as can be seen from the lives of all great men of faith, especially Jesus. But they all kept constantly looking to the heavenly Father for the strength to carry on, and He gave it to them. Likewise, if we look to our heavenly Father for strength and wisdom to carry on in tough times, He WILL give it to us. 

So friends, whatever is coming against us right now, let’s try and think of it in joyful terms nuh, (smile) believing that God is allowing it for a greater purpose than we can imagine, and lean on Him for the help to come through it successfully. He will not disappoint us. That’s His faithful promise! Much LOVE!

…spiritual growth…is based on fleshly suffering…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 April 2017 Jeremiah 13:16.

Jeremiah 13:16.   Give glory to the Lord your God, before he cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and, while ye look for light, he turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness.

Oh friends, welcome to a cloudy spring day in my neck of the woods. I was planning to rev us up with all sorts of good things, like it’s not the physical aspect of the day that really counts, but what we do with the day in Jesus’ name. And to invoke that well-known verse of Psalm 118 – ‘This is the day the Lord hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it!’ 

However, when I opened my e-mail I was greeted by some sad and bad, but also in a sense good and comforting news. My priest, Father Jeff, had written to inform me that one of my friends and fellow parishioners, Jacqueline Kitson had passed away this morning. 

And she fell victim to none other than our current scourge, the death-maker called cancer. What hurts some is that she was hospitalized a few days ago and I had promised to go and see her, but everyday I was either too busy, or not feeling up to scratch myself. But I spoke to her on the phone yesterday and promised faithfully to come today. 

Ah Lord eh! The good news scenario though is that she is now home with her heavenly Father and not suffering the pain and inconvenience that she’s been enduring over the past couple of years. She might have been small in stature, but had a big and strong heart, fighting the dreaded scourge every inch of the way. 

I remember the Sunday mornings during this last winter when I would pick her up and take her to church, she was always bright and positive in spite of her illness, bravely enduring the long trips to Toronto for the chemo and other treatments. 

And for a while there during the latter part of the year she seemed to have been in a stage of remission; eating fairly well, putting on some weight and looking better than she’d done for a few months. She even got out to the church’s annual dinner and dance last fall and partied up a storm. Everybody was glad to see her dancing and enjoying herself. 

But the cancer reared its ugly head again a couple of months ago and this time she was not able to fight it off. Rest in peace Jackie my friend. You are gone but not forgotten. You will always remain in our hearts and thoughts until we meet again in the Great Beyond! 

That’s why my brethren it’s ever so important to heed the admonition of our Bit: ‘Give glory to the Lord your God, before he cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and, while ye look for light, he turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness.’ 

Yes friends, we need to pay serious attention to God’s word at all times, for we know not when our number will be called up yonder. And it would be very unfortunate and damaging to our eternal situation if the grim reaper were to appear before we’re quite ready. 

We need to be always in a state of preparedness my people, looking continually to the light that’s Jesus, and giving our magnificent and magnanimous God all the glory and honour, the praise and thanksgiving that He so rightfully deserves. 

Walking in continual darkness does not become a child of God, for children of God have seen the light and gloriously acknowledge it! 

And we have a good example of God’s judgement when the men of Ai defeated the forces of Israel, and Joshua bewailed the Lord for the defeat.  (Josh.7:1-9) 

‘And the Lord said unto Joshua, get thee up; wherefore liest thou thus upon thy face? Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed my covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing (things devoted to the Lord), and have also stolen, and dissembled (deceived) also, and they have put it even among their own stuff. 

Therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, but turned their backs before their enemies, because they were accursed (devoted to destruction): neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you.’ (Josh.7:10-12) 

Yeh friends, contrary to popular opinion, our God is not a joking God, as Israel found out when they disobeyed His commands. So the long and short of the story is that Joshua searched all the people, until he came to one man named Achan. 

‘And Joshua said unto Achan, My son, give, I pray thee, glory to the Lord God of Israel, and make confession unto him; and tell me now what thou hast done; hide it not from me. And Achan answered Joshua, and said, Indeed I have sinned against the Lord God of Israel, and thus and thus have I done: 

When I saw among the spoils a goodly Babylonian garment, and two hundred shekels of silver; and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, then I coveted (desired) them, and took them; and behold, they are hid in the earth in the midst of my tent, and the silver under it.’ (Josh.7:19-21) 

Yuh see friends, all of Israel suffered because of one man’s greed and covetousness. And what became of Achan and his family? ‘And all Israel stoned him with stones, and burned them with fire, after they had stoned them with stones.’ (Josh.7:25b) 

It’s not easy my friends, but it’s very worthwhile to remember that disobedience to God’s commands always have consequences, very serious ones too. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, with much enthusiasm, faithfully believing what we say. 

‘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 now it’s time to go out and put it all into action my brethren! Much LOVE!

…only the light of Jesus…can prevent us from stumbling in the darkness of this world…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 January 2017 Philippians 4:4.

Philippians 4:4.   Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.

Ah friends, it ‘s another Monday morning; another damp and cloudy day, and the worst part of it is that I have to face the Monday morning traffic and go into the big city for some blood work at a special hospital – and it includes fasting too! Chuh! 

It couldn’t be done at any other time of the day? No! It must be done by 8 a.m, and that’s why the Bit is so short and so early. Well there’s not much I can do about the situation, if I want to get the help the blood work will offer. 

So unlike most Mondays, today I will definitely need the enthusiasm and strength to face the road, provided by our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. So let’s belt it out loud and proud nuh.

‘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!’ 

Ah friends, I’m sure you heard my voice loud and clear this morning as we delivered a fine rendition! Jesus heard it too and He was proud of us, and promised that all will be well on this first day of the new workweek. 

And I believe Him, so I’m not worried about getting out there at this early hour, it’s just that it’s rather inconvenient… And who likes inconvenience in this modern day society eh? (smile) 

But on the other hand, rather conveniently, our Bit today is also a major encourager. ‘Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.’ 

Ah mih people, we all know that is easier said than done, but as faithful believers we have been given the wherewithal to be joyful under all and any circumstances. We have been granted salvation through the free and undeserving grace of Almighty God! 

Our sins have been forgiven, our names have been written in the Book of Life, the Holy Spirit of Jesus dwells in us to lead and guide us, and Jesus will be coming back sometime soon in awesome power to take us to dwell with him forever in the ultimate beauty that’s heaven! 

So like the beautiful verse from Psalm 42 – An intense longing for God – we can also declare. ‘Why art thou cast (bowed) down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted in me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).’ (Ps.42:5) 

Yes friends, that’s a wonderful verse of scripture we should all keep in the back of our minds, ever ready to encourage us, when our souls are feeling low down. 

And as we said yesterday, rejoicing always is not necessarily jumping up and down all the time, but it’s an aspect of our strong faith that give us the assurance that our lives are in the hands of the omnipotent, omniscient, omni-present Creator of the universe, who is working out all things for our good. 

Under those circumstances, we can therefore relax and rejoice always. And with those words of wisdom, (smile) I’ll leave us and go and get myself ready to do like Jack – hit the road! Much LOVE!

…when believers are in a constant mode of rejoicing…then the world truly sees Jesus in them…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 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.

Monday, oh Monday! What a wonderful day thou art! No friends, the ole fella isn’t losing his marbles – at least not just yet. 

Monday is a great day. It gets us back into the normal running of our lives and reintroduces us to the outside world, refreshed and renewed. It allows us to socialize with a wide group of people, meet and greet all our friends and fellow workers – those we like and those we’re not so thrilled about. (smile) And above all, it means that we’re working, earning a pay cheque, and supporting our families. 

Now doesn’t that make Monday a great day? I think so. But too many of us look at Monday as a day of inconvenience; meaning we have to get up and go out to work, with all that that entails. But whatever day you have to begin work after a period of rest will pose the same problems. 

If Tuesday was the first day of the work week, we’d still be miserable and complaining. Just look at how we behave when we’re gifted with a long weekend. So, I’d suggest the sooner we begin to like Mondays, or at least not despise them as much, the sooner our lives will improve. End of sermon! (smile) 

Now to tie all of that up and give us the wherewithal we need to get up and get going, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with plenty gusto and lots of enthusiasm. Hn, hn! 

As one majestic choir 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!’ 

Now that sounded real good friends! So good that our choirmaster, Jesus, gave us a big smile and a clenched right fist salute in acknowledgement. Glory Be! 

Now all that’s left for us to do is to get ourselves involved in the ongoing battle and give the enemy heck! Kill them with LOVE and kindness! Oh, I know that is very difficult to do with some folks, but that’s what our Leader desires of us. And what our Leader wants, our Leader gets! 

And having only celebrated the day of Pentecost yesterday, when the Holy Spirit was universally introduced, it is indeed important that today we be filled with it and let it control and guide our lives as our Lord and Saviour expects. That means we can’t be wishy washy today my people. 

We have to stand up and be counted in true Christian fashion, like ole Simon Peter stood up on that first day of Pentecost and preached a marvellous sermon, based on 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.’ 

Now let’s hear some of what Peter said. ‘But Peter standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words: For these are not drunken, as ye suppose , seeing as it is but the third hour of the day. But this is that day which was spoken by the prophet Joel…’ (Acts 2:14-16)  And then he went on to quote Joel 2:28-32, which includes our Bit. (Acts 2:17-21) 

And the scholars offer this important warning re Peter’s sermon. ‘2:16-21. Peter does not say that Pentecost is the fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy concerning the last days (Rev.6:12). Peter does not see a celestial cataclysm (vv.19-20). Yet it is that of which Joel speaks, because it is the beginning of that fulfillment. 

Peter did not see the Spirit coming upon all people, but he did see Him coming upon 120 (those in the room with him).  It was the beginning, but surely not the complete fulfillment. Peter understood, as we should, that the last days had already begun, even with the birth of Christ (Heb.1:2; 1 Pet.1:20).’ 

Yes friends, we are indeed in the last days, but the last days as God sees them; meaning that they are stretched out over a long period of time in our reckoning, but in His it’s not that long. And we’ll end there for today, because the rest of stuff I have to share will make it much too long. And I always have our short attention spans in mind. (smile) 

So my brethren, until tomorrow, God willing, may He bless and keep us all, grant us His peace that passes all understanding, and help us to stand strong in faith and do good works in obedience to His will. Much LOVE!

…who is the one that teaches us what to say…the Holy Spirit…who is the one that guides our way…the Holy Spirit…He is the one that makes our day…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 November 2013 Genesis 9:6

 Genesis 9:6. I do set my bow (rainbow) in the cloud, and it shall be for a token (sign) of a covenant between me and the earth.
 
Ah Friends, what would we do without computers eh? Have a much less stressful life, that’s for certain! Have you ever noticed that they choose the absolute worst time to act up? I sure have. For instance this morning I came down here early to get an early start…
 
Chuh! I might as well have slept in, because after booting up satisfactorily, the stupid mouse refused to work. I unplugged it, then plugged it back in, banged it on the desk, clicked it numerous times, but nothing happened.
 
So finally in frustration I went upstairs to get the mouse from my laptop computer. By the time I came back though, I had some 39 entries for Internet Explorer on the go. Hn!
 
Then you think I could shut them down? No way! I eventually had to switch off the whole computer. Steups! Then by the time it booted back up, there was this message saying it was downloading updates, which slowed up all the stuff I tried to do.
 
Then to make matters even worse, it cut in and said that the computer needed restarting so that the updates could take effect. Ah Lord eh! By then I was ready to throw it through the window. (smile) But the Spirit of the Lord prevailed, and I simply used a few deleted expletives.
 
But that’s why I like my typewriter; just turn it on, slip in a piece of paper and go! No laughter from the penny section now my children. Anyway, if that’s the biggest inconvenience that the Lord has planned for me today, then I’ll definitely declare a big, ‘Thank You Lord!’
 
But I’m not holding my breath, because that might just be the smallest one for the day. However, I know that whatever He causes to come against me, He will help me to work through, once I come to Him with a sincere plea.
 
As Bruh Paul told the Romans and reminds us today: ‘And we know that all things work together for good to those that LOVE God, to them who are called according to His purpose. (Rom.8:28)
 
So if we LOVE God, and He’s called us to be one of His elect, then we don’t have to worry about anything, because God will work it out for our good, one way or the other.
 
Now Friends, today we’re starting a series of messages on the promises of our great and wonderful God. I got this idea from Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) some weeks ago, when he preached a sermon on it, but I obviously never got around to doing it until the Lord said today’s the day.
 
And we’ll begin with one of the first promises God made to man, our Bit. ‘I do set my bow (rainbow) in the cloud, and it shall be for a token (sign) of a covenant between me and the earth.’
 
Yeh Friends, after the Lord caused the flood to wipe out mankind and his evil from His beautiful earth, He covenanted with Noah and his sons, Ham, Shem and Japheth, to set a rainbow in the heavens.
 
‘And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow (rainbow) shall be seen in the cloud: And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.
 
And the bow (rainbow) shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth.’ (Gen.9:14-16)
 
So mih people, whenever we see a beautiful rainbow arcing through the sky, let’s remember that God is contemplating His ‘everlasting’ promise to never destroy the earth with water again.
 
Please note my brethren, that it wasn’t just a promise for some short period of time, but an everlasting one; one that would last forever and ever. That’s how much our God valued His promise to Noah and His earthly creations. And please notice too, that our magnificent God didn’t use some little wishy-washy sign to remind Him, but a glorious arc of beautiful colours set in his blue heaven.
 
That reminds me of my trip to T&T last year. On the plane from Trinidad to Tobago I espied a beautiful rainbow outside my window, one that followed me all the way to landing, which I took as a good sign; a sign of God’s goodness and faithfulness.
 
And believe me Friends, the vacation in the land of my birth, or as the old people would say, where my navel string was buried (smile) from which I had been exiled for some thirty years, turned out to be most excellent. So I simply don’t believe the adage that you can never go home again.
 
In fact I’m hoping to go back again some time in the not too distant future, and eventually spend my last days there. ‘Glory Hallelujah!’
 
And on that glorious note we’ll close today Friends, because we don’t have enough time and space for another promise. But don’t worry, tomorrow, our God in favour, we’ll look at one or more great promises of our ever-faithful, ever-LOVING, ever-merciful and ever-forgiving God. 
 
We simply cannot ask for a better Deity than the Lord God Jehovah, He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Please remember that my people, and live accordingly. Much LOVE!
 
…to mankind…promises are made to be broken…but to God…promises are made…NEVER TO BE BROKEN…so that His children can always feel safe and secure…in whatever situation…what a wonderful God we serve and worship… 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 June 2013 Philippians 1:12

Philippians 1:12:    But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel.

 Oh Friends, at long last my kitchen sink is operational again! Glory Hallelujah! But it wasn’t all smooth sailing. First off, the plumbers were supposed to arrive around 10 a.m. So I got up, got myself together and waited for them. But eleven o’clock came and went, then twelve, without any action or news. 
 
So I eventually called the office, only to learn that they’d been sent out on an emergency call earlier in the day, but they would be there as soon as possible. Steups! That asap though was two p.m.
 
Obviously I wasn’t happy because I had wasted four hours of my time that could have been used much more constructively than just hanging around waiting for them. The plumber wasn’t happy either because he figured that the office had called me about the delay. On top of that, by the time they arrived it was raining intermittently. 
 
Anyway, we put aside our unhappiness and did what was necessary to get the job done. There was a fair amount of grease in the drain, but not enough to cause any serious problems, and by four p.m. we were done. And the price was just a mere eleven hundred and forty something dollars! (smile) What else can I do but grin and bear it eh?
 
Much to my surprise though, I discovered that it included a charge for an hour’s travelling time…the ole crooks and them! And though I knew they didn’t travel anywhere close to an hour to get to my house, I didn’t argue over it. I was just glad to get the problem fixed, also reasoning that if I was being robbed, I’d let the Lord deal with it, since He says that’s His department, He’ll right the wrongs done to His people. (Deut.32:35; Rom.12:19)
 
Oh, I need to make one correction from yesterday, where I stated that the tax rate was 15%, it’s actually 13%. So my life is back to normal again. Thank the Lord! But those three days of inconvenience really brought home to me how unappreciative we are of our favoured society status, with all our modern conveniences. Not until we have to do without them for a period of time, do we truly see how they impact out lives.
 
We complain about the hard and rough olden days, but the places that we got water from then, the stand pipe or the river never got clogged. The clothes line in the backyard never jammed, or the scrubbing boards and the river stones break down, neither did the outhouse back up. (smile) We never had the problems we have now with these supposed modern conveniences. But we’ve become so lazy and pampered, that many of us can’t operate unless we have all the conveniences.
 
Anyway, let’s turn to our Bit now: ‘But I would ye should understand (want you to know), brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out (turned out) rather unto the furtherance of the gospel.’ It’s the same as yesterday, because I thought there was some more important scripture there for us to address.
 
Now yesterday, we saw where Bruh Paul’s imprisonment, unlike normal expectations, worked to further the spreading of the gospel amongst the unlikely Roman praetorian palace guards, and also emboldened the Roman Christians to get up off their frightened fannies and preach the Good News of Christ with zest and enthusiasm.
 
Oh that more of us today would do likewise my brethren, because the preaching and sharing of the gospel is very badly needed in these evil, ungodly, trying and troubled times! And we have nothing to fear, except fear itself, unlike the early Christians who faced serious persecution for their beliefs.
 
However, listen to Bruh Paul from where we left off yesterday. ‘Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: The one preach Christ of contention (selfish ambition), not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds (chains): But the other of LOVE, knowing that I am set (appointed) for the defense of the gospel. What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretense, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.’ (Phil.1:15-18)
 
And that’s an awesome fact Friends! Some people were preaching for the wrong motive, merely for self-aggrandisement, and sadly, many are still doing the same thing today.
 
But, per the scholars: ‘The right motivation is LOVE- LOVE for God, for Paul, and LOVE for unbelievers. Improper motives are envy, strife (v 15), and selfish ambition. Some egotistical Christians were jealous of the apostle and rejoiced over his imprisonment, for it gave them opportunity to be in the limelight. Supposing to add affliction to his bonds: They hoped that when Paul learned of their being the centre of attention, his chains would become particularly galling to him.’
 
But no such luck! Instead he gloried in the fact that the gospel was being preached, and his chains didn’t bother him one bit! Oh my people, are we thus conditioned, that whatever our circumstances we’re glad to hear the gospel preached? I surely hope so, because then we’ll truly be on our way to becoming mature Christians. 
 
Per the scholars: ‘Paul was so selfless and so concerned for Christ that, whether the preaching came from proper or improper motives, he rejoiced in the truth being proclaimed. To be sure, he was grieved over the wrong motives of some, but to him motivation was secondary, while propagation of the truth was primary.’  
 
Ah Friends, the gospel of Christ is so powerful that it causes even those with selfish, ulterior motives to preach it! However, since we are true believers, let’s all go out and preach it with the right motive nuh, that of LOVE: LOVE for God and LOVE for all mankind. I pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen. Much LOVE my brethren!
 
…spreading the Good News of Christ…from a heart of LOVE…is the only thing that will bring about the much needed…LOVE Revolution…
 
 
 

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