Today’s Scrip-Bit   27 January 2023 Isaiah 55:6.

Isaiah 55:6.       Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call upon him while he is near:

And there’s some sunshine shining on the cold white snow in a cloudy background, which my computer terms as haze. (smile) Yes friends, on this last Friday in January 2023, we declare ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!‘ in a cold and hazy atmosphere. The important thing though is that our great and wonderful God, Jehovah is still on His heavenly throne, still in control of all earthly movements, although we might not think so. 

And yes, He does give us a lot of leeway to do as we please, but let’s never forget His sage, incisive and sharp-edged words, spoken through His prophet Isaiah. ‘Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.’ (Is. 55:6-7) 

And in these evil and ungodly times, do we ever need to return to Almighty God and be pardoned, for the sinful attributes in our world are overwhelming, reaching up to high heaven with a frightful stench that totally boggles the imagination. And those sage and rather incisive words of God continue: ‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.’ (Is. 55:8-9) 

Oh my fellow believers, the Lord might give us free will to do and act as we please, but we are never out of His sight nor His thoughts because He is omniscient and omnipresent and will only allow us to get away with so much wrongdoing, while constantly calling us to righteousness. And I don’t understand why we so adamantly refuse His call to godliness and righteousness, especially when He’s made such great provision for us. 

Listen to his words again nuh. ‘For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it to bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void (empty, without fruit), but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.’  (Is. 55:10-11) 

Yuh hear that friends? Our God is purposely telling us that whatever He sends out His word to accomplish, will be accomplished, and in the exact manner that He desires. Now doesn’t that make us concerned about our culture and lifestyle, our disobedience and ungodliness? It ought to, because His word contains so many promises of the wicked and sinful being destroyed, of being punished in the fires of hell. That ought to make us sit up and take serious notice of His holy and truthful word, and turn to Him, though somewhat belatedly, for the abundant pardon that He holds out to all who come to Him in sincere repentance. 

And listen to this magnificent promise of our great and ever-faithful God to those who avidly and sincerely Him. ‘For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir (cypress) tree, and instead of the brier (plant with a thorny and prickly stem) shall come up the myrtle tree: and it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.’ (Is. 55:12-13) 

Wow mih bredrin! What a magnificent promise! Our God includes us in the everlasting covenant He’s given to his chosen people, Israel. And are we going to refuse it for foolish and prideful self-interest? The scholars tell us that God’s ‘invitation to all men is clearly stated in the appeal, Seek ye the Lord and call ye upon him.’ 

They also inform us that ‘God’s sovereignty and omniscience are extolled by the statements that His thoughts (i.e. purposes or intentions) and ways (directions)  are higher than ours. While God may certainly be known by men, He is still incomprehensible in the totality of His person and purposes. Therefore He reveals Himself to men by His word, which shall not return to Him void (empty, in vain). The Word of God, therefore accomplishes His purpose in announcing salvation to all mankind.’ 

And He’s kept His word by sending His sinless Son, Jesus Christ to die for us on Calvary’s cross, so that our sins can be forgiven, and we be made the righteousness of Christ, be reconciled to our Creator and no longer bear the mark of Satan, but of Christ, and no longer bound for hell fire and damnation, but for the beautiful and peaceful halls of heaven. Now, we would be everlastingly foolish to reject such a marvellous solution to our sinful souls. 

So please, I implore us to day to get serious about Jesus and His amazing way of life. Though it’s not easy and ofttimes sacrificial, it is ALWAYS interesting and adventurous and leads to untold treasures and rewards in heaven that last forever, unlike the earthly treasures we run down, that soon decay and are of no further use. Therefore, in faith, hope and wisdom, through our Friday Chant, let’s go to the throne of God in sincere prayer and ask for His divine help. 

As one confident but humble voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the confusion and anxiety caused by the pandemic and our many other serious problems. We can’t fix them on our own Lord, so 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 the simmering unrest in our land. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, without further serious setbacks. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to return backsliders to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a new flock of believers, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic, the bubbling discontent and dissatisfaction in our land, as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, wake up and smell it sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And as always, if we sincerely desire to receive positive answers from our omnipotent God, we need to keep our promises and be obedient to His holy will. Much LOVE!

…God’s provided the way to salvation…it’s up to us…to accept or reject it… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ    

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   20 January 2023   1 Peter 5:6.

1 Peter 5:6.        Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

Oh boy, a bit of midmorning sunshine is happening out here in my area! Glory be! Unfortunately though, there are also dark clouds looming ominously all around the horizon. Well, at least we can be thankful that there’s no precipitation, at least not yet. (smile) Anyway, today I want to continue looking at Psalm 145, Bruh David’s Psalm of praise to God’s Unsearchable Greatness. 

And he hits his stride, when he eloquently and truthfully proclaims: ‘The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger and of great mercy. The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works. All thy works shall praise thee, O Lord; and thy saints shall bless thee, They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, and talk of thy power; To make known to the sons of men his mighty acts and the glorious majesty of his kingdom. Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.’ (Ps. 145:8-13) 

Now friends, all that Bruh David says about our great and wonderful God is absolutely true: He is gracious, compassionate, slow to anger, full of tender mercy, His kingdom is magnificent and will endure forever. But are we, the sons of men, making known His mighty acts and speaking of the glorious majesty of His kingdom, as we ought to eh? I don’t think so. Our overall witness and testimony to Almighty God is sadly lacking. But how can it be any better when Christ’s body, His church is in poor shape, divided and filled with much falsehood and many false teachers. And when you add the fear, lethargy and LOVE of the world that so many of us supposed believers exhibit, it can’t be otherwise. 

Remember the words of James, Jesus’ brother: ‘Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of (with) the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will (wants to) be a friend of the world is (makes himself) the enemy of God.’ (James 4:4) It couldn’t be any clearer than that my fellow believers. And the scholars explain, that just ‘as Israel was a spiritual adulteress, unfaithful to God, so the church is a spiritual adulteress when she is the unfaithful bride of Christ (cf. Hos. 2:5, 19-20; Matt. 12:39). One cannot be both a LOVER of God and a LOVER of the world.’ 

No friends, that’s not possible. It’s either one or the other. Jesus said it very plainly in the Sermon on the Mount, when he spoke about laying up treasures in heaven. ‘No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and LOVE the other; or else he will hold (be loyal) to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (riches).’ (Matt. 6:24) But yet, many of us supposed believers try to do just that, we attempt to sit on the fence and have our feet in both worlds, but we’re only fooling ourselves and making a mockery of God’s word and His church! 

And also remember what James says when talking about obtaining wisdom from God. ‘But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering (not doubting). For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord. A doubleminded man is unstable in all his ways.’ (James 1:6-8) 

And we cannot dispute that fact my brethren. If we are unstable, waver, doubt and straddle the fence, how will we ever proceed successfully and accomplish anything worthwhile eh? We need to be strong and steadfast, faithful and true to whatever we say we believe in. We can’t be like so many of us Christians, who go to church on Sunday, exhibiting a ton of righteousness, but from Monday to Saturday live like the world. 

And the sad part is that we think we’re fooling somebody, but the truth is that we’re only fooling ourselves, for God see us quite clearly and knows exactly what we are about, and the world also sees us and laughs at us, while snickering ‘hypocrite’ behind our backs. Ah my fellow saints, I don’t know what else to say that will encourage us to drop the façade and become serious Christians, sincerely living our lives for Christ and not hanging on to the coattails of the evil and ungodly world, which only wants to drag us down to hell with it. 

And Peter hits the hail on the head when he writes: ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren (experienced by everyone) that are in the world.’ (1 Pet. 5:6-9) 

Now that ought to help us stand up strong and resist the enemy, who really has no power over us, but what we allow him to have. And for further help, let’s go to God in prayer, through our Friday Chant, crying out for His divine help. Altogether now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the confusion and anxiety caused by the pandemic and our many other serious problems. We can’t fix them on our own Lord, so 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 the simmering unrest in our land. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, without further serious setbacks. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to return backsliders to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a new flock of believers, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic, the bubbling discontent and dissatisfaction in our land, as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, wake up and smell it sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And as always, whatever promise(s) we’ve made to God in our prayers, we need to keep them, if we want to see any positive answers from Him. Much LOVE!

…why do we foolishly try to hide from God…when He is omniscient…sees everything…                                                                                                                                                                   

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ  

Today’s Scrip-Bit   6 January 2023 Matthew 4:4.

Matthew 4:4.       It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

And then, finally and thankfully, it was Friday! And though the rain has stopped in my area, the day is still damp and cloudy, but it didn’t stop people from joyfully shouting: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!’ Some are glad that they can rest their tired souls and bodies after the Christmas and New Year’s Eve celebrations, while others are just dying to continue those celebrations. (smile) However, let’s remember that although Jesus participated in several feasts as His Jewish faith required, when tempted by Satan, He still rebuked him thus: ‘It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.’ (Matt. 4:4) 

And it will surely do us a wealth of good this year of 2023 if we practice living by God’s Word rather than the materialistic ways of this evil world. Now all Jesus did when He rebuked Satan was quote the word of God to Him. and that quote is actually written in Deuteronomy. Listen, as Moses triggered the Israelites memories of God’s care in the wilderness. 

‘And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the Lord doth man live. 

Thy raiment waxed not old upon thee (thy clothing did not wear out), neither did thy foot swell, these forty years. Thou shalt also consider in thine heart (know), that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the Lord thy God chasteneth thee. Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to fear him.’ (Deut. 8:2-6) 

Now my brethren, there’s a lot we can learn from those scriptures. First of all, the Lord allowed His chosen people to suffer so He could test them. And that ought to remind us that since we declare that our God doesn’t change, He’s the same yesterday, and today, and forever, (Heb. 13:8; Mal. 3:6) that means He’s still testing those who call themselves His people. That’s us. And yuh know what? Like the Israelites, we’re not taking the testing too well. (smile) We’re complaining all the way to the Promised Land. 

That’s why some of us are having more difficult lives than others although we seem to live the same lifestyles. Complaining will kill us every time my people, especially if we claim to believe in God’s LOVE for us, and His faithful intent to work out all that happens for our eventual good. (Rom. 8:28) That’s why the Israelites wondered in the wilderness for forty long years: because of disobedience and distrust. Why would our lives today be any different eh? 

The next thing we should note is that although the Lord chastens His people, He never totally leaves them to suffer. Yes, although the Israelites had it rough in the wilderness, their clothes never wore out, their feet didn’t swell and they always had food, heavenly manna, which they didn’t know and didn’t like, but it kept them healthy. (smile) But it was all due to the Lord’s compassion. And it’s the very same way the Lord deals with us today. He chastens us, but does not set us adrift, or apart from Him. His continuing to bother with us proves that He LOVES us unconditionally, as He’s said from the very beginning. 

That brings us to these everlastingly important verses of scripture, especially in these turbulent and unprincipled times. The timely words of the author of Hebrews. ‘For consider him that endured such contradictions (hostility) of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint (discouraged) in your minds (souls). Ye have not resisted unto blood (bloodshed), striving against sin. And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children (sons), 

My son, despise not thou the chastening (discipline) of the Lord, nor faint (be discouraged) when thou art rebuked by him. For whom the Lord LOVETH he chasteneth and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then ye are bastards (illegitimate), and not sons.’ (Heb. 12:3-8) 

It’s simple friends; just like our earthly fathers discipline us when we do wrong (vs. 9-10), likewise, if we disobey God’s word, He disciplines us. The problem though is that none of us like to be disciplined even when we’ve done wrong, and that’s very emphasized in our current society where the state of entitlement is so prevalent. Meaning that we desire to sin as we want and to not be chastened for it. But as the Bible further enlightens us: ‘Now no chastening (discipline) for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised (trained) thereby.’ (Hebr. 12:11) 

Oh my people, it’s just a natural part of life; if you do wrong, then you have to pay the price. It’s like Uncle Charles (Dr. Charles Stanley) likes to say: ‘You reap what you sow; more than you sow and later than you sow.’ And that’s the gospel truth, it’s a life principle we ought not to forget. And as we look around our strife-filled and sinful world today, let’s remember that our saving grace is to live by the Word of God, and be determined to do that, this year of 2023! 

Now let’s go to God, through our Friday Chant, for divine help to do it. As one sincere voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the confusion and anxiety caused by the pandemic and our many other serious problems. We can’t fix them on our own Lord, so 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 the simmering unrest in our land. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, without further serious setbacks. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to return backsliders to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a new flock of believers, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic, the bubbling discontent and dissatisfaction in our land, as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, wake up and smell it sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

Now friends, it’s up to us live those promises so that God can answer us in a positive manner. Much LOVE!

…you can’t expect to live wrong and strong…all the time… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ