Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 February 2021 2 Corinthians 5:21.

2 Corinthians 5:21.     ​For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

Snow, snow, go away, and come back some other day! (smile) That’s what we would all like this Sunday morning my brethren, but let’s be thankful for small mercies, namely that we don’t have to journey out in it to get to church to sing praises and worship our wonderful God. Yes, this virtual and technological worshipping is a pain in the neck, but it’s certainly better than no worship at all. 

So to show our thanks let’s begin by belting out this marvelous old hymn with lyrics by Isaac Watts (1674 – 1748) and the chorus by Ralph E. Hudson (1843-1901) Yes friends, we talking about ‘At the Cross.’ What a wonderful hymn, for it speaks to our most wonderful gift; SALVATION! Glory be! 

Let’s celebrate in song, our two blessed occasions nuh; when Christ was crucified for our sake and when we found Him and made Him our Lord and Saviour. Now, in an easy rocking tempo, with joy resounding from every note and word, let’s allow our sincere sacrifice of praise to be heard all over the world, and also in high heaven.

(Refrain: At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day!) ‘Alas! and did my Savior bleed And did my Sovereign die? Would He devote that sacred head For sinners such as I? (Refrain: At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day!) 

Thy body slain, sweet Jesus, Thine— And bathed in its own blood— While the firm mark of wrath divine, His Soul in anguish stood. (Refrain) Was it for crimes that I had done He groaned upon the tree? Amazing pity! grace unknown! And love beyond degree! (Refrain) Well might the sun in darkness hide And shut his glories in, When Christ, the mighty Maker died, For man the creature’s sin. 

(Refrain) Thus might I hide my blushing face While His dear cross appears, Dissolve my heart in thankfulness, And melt my eyes to tears. (Refrain) But drops of grief can ne’er repay The debt of LOVE I owe: Here, Lord, I give my self away ’Tis all that I can do. At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day! Now I am happy all the day…happy all the day…happy all the day…’ 

Oh my people, if you’re not happy all the day, then you don’t truly believe! Why you ask? Simply becauseour salvation was certainly earned at the Cross, for as the Good Book says: ‘For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God’ (Rom. 3:23) And what’s the consequence of sin? The Good Book also spells it out quite clearly. ‘For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (Rom. 6:23) 

And how is death changed into life? The Good Book also has the answer for that. ‘And almost all things are by the law purged (cleansed) with blood; and without (the) shedding of blood (there) is no remission (forgiveness). (Heb. 9:22) That means friends, that all sinners were condemned to death from the very beginning of their lives because no animal or human blood was able to pay for us to have life anew. That could only be attained by the shedding of the blood of a sinless soul, and Jesus was the ONLY One around who could lay claim to that characteristic. 

So what did Almighty God in His divine wisdom and incalculable LOVE do? ‘For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.’ (2 Cor. 5:21) Yes my people, God placed ALL of our sin on Jesus, so that He could pay the price for ALL sin for ALL time! Christ was guiltless and sinless, but the Father LOVED us so much that He was willing to sacrifice His only Son for us. Oh my bredrin, which one of us would have given up our only son to be a sacrifice for a bunch of ingrates eh? None of us would have willingly done it, like the Father did! 

So we should just be thankful and jump for joy and just fall all over ourselves to do Jesus’ bidding! Can you imagine the ‘sufferation’ He underwent on our behalf; the flogging, the crown of thorns on his head, the nails in His hands and feet, the spear in His side, crucified naked, the mocking, the shame, the resentment and hate that was thrown His way…all on our behalf? As the hymn says about Jesus bruised and battered body ‘bathed in its own blood…His soul in anguish stood…for crimes that I had done…’ Steups! Then we get up and spout a whole lot of foolishness and don’t take the whole thing as seriously as we ought. 

And simple eyes-water is not good enough. Why? ‘But drops of grief can ne’er repay The debt of LOVE I owe. Here, Lord, I give myself away ‘Tis all that I can do.’ Yes friends, we can never repay Jesus’ sacrifice, the best that we can do is surrender our lives to Him and worship Him as our Lord and Saviour, LOVE Him with all our hearts, souls, bodies and minds, being ever so thankful for His saving grace. And John puts it thus in his first epistle. ‘And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.’ (1 John 2:2) 

That means Christ’s sacrificial death satisfied the Father’s requirement, the justice needed to pay for sin, now and for all time. What more can we ask eh? And some of us might be wondering why the Lord did all of that? Bruh Paul explained it to Timothy. ‘Who will (desires to) have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.’ (1 Tim. 2:4-6) 

Yes my fellow saints in Christ, Jesus’ sacrifice was proof that the Father wanted ALL to be converted. So he’s done His part, the rest is now up to us. Much LOVE!

…the foot of the cross…the best place to find Jesus…and lay your burdens down…  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 October 2020 Romans 5:8.

Romans 5:8.     ​But God commendeth (demonstrated) his LOVE toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Here we go again friends, time to sing and praise our wonderful God in Sunday fellowship! There’s nothing better than that! Only problem is we still can’t gather all together in one place and do it. But that’s just a minor setback since those few of us who want to go to church now can, and the rest of us will just continue what we’ve been doing for the last five or six months, worshipping together virtually. How can they stop us when the Lord God is our mainstay eh? No way! 

But enough talk, let’s get to some praise and worship nuh. And today’s hymn is a very old but still popular one, titled ‘At the Cross.’ It was written by one of the great hymn writers, Isaac Watts (1674-1748), and some 100 years later the American choir leader Ralph E. Hudson (1843-1901) added the chorus and the inspiring tune that we now sing it to. According to one commentator, the chorus might have caused Watts hair to stand on end. (smile) And though not much seems to be known about the background story to this song, it does seem as though it inspired another great hymn writer, Fanny Crosby. 

According to her:”It was on November 2, 1850, that I was gloriously converted while the congregation sang the grand old consecration hymn of Isaac Watts. When they reached the 3rd line of the last verse: ‘Here, Lord, I give myself away,’ I surrendered myself to my Savior, and my soul was flooded with celestial light. I sprang to my feet shouting, ‘Hallelujah!’ I gave my heart to Him, and what a Joy I received!” – from the website hymnal-net. Just one more mysterious way in which our Lord moves in the lives of His people; inspiring Fanny Crosby with the words of Isaac Watts. 

So let’s sing it now in an easy rocking, soulful style, and let it inspire us to keep the joy of our Saviour in our hearts and lives. And to help us do that, we’ll begin with the chorus which rocks more than the verse. (smile) (Chorus: ‘At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day!) Alas, and did my Savior bleed? And did my Sovereign die? Would He devote that sacred head For sinners such as I? 

(Chorus…) Thy body slain, sweet Jesus, Thine – And bathed in its own blood – While the firm mark of wrath divine, His Soul in anguish stood. (Chorus…) Was it for sins that I had done He groaned upon the tree? Amazing pity! grace unknown! And love beyond degree! (Chorus…) Well might the sun in darkness hide, And shut His glories in, When Christ, the mighty Maker, died For man, His creature’s sin. 

(Chorus…) Thus might I hide my blushing face While His dear cross appears. Dissolve my heart in thankfulness, And melt mine eyes to tears. (Chorus…) But drops of grief can ne’er repay The debt of love I owe; Here, Lord, I give myself away, ’Tis all that I can do. At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, And the burden of my heart rolled away, It was there by faith I received my sight, And now I am happy all the day! Now I’m happy all the day…happy all the day…happy all the day…’ 

Oh friends, I do hope that we are indeed happy after singing those wonderful lyrics of absolute truth! If you’re not, then you had better check your faith, because with all that Christ did for us, when He sacrificed Himself on that old wooden cross at Calvary, believers ought to be not merely happy but exceedingly ecstatic! Remember what the Good Book says? ‘But God commendeth (demonstrated) his LOVE toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom. 5:8) 

Can you imagine that mih people, while we were the enemy of God, He sent His only Son to die in our place! That means we should be eternally grateful! And hear this nuh, while researching the song, I came upon the video of another song also titled ‘At the Cross,’ this one done by the Hillsong group, and brother if yuh see the bruised and battered state Jesus was in while dragging his cross up to Calvary, how he kept falling down under its weight and unwieldiness, then when they pounded the nails in his hands and lifted the cross up and dropped it in the hole…Steups! 

I couldn’t handle it nuh. I had to turn away. And no doubt by what we read in the Good Book, Jesus was in a real beat up state, all for our benefit. So if we can’t appreciate His supreme sacrifice on our part, then something really wrong with us yes. 

And Peter tells us in no uncertain terms, when he talks about the example of Christ’s suffering. ‘For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted (beaten) for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with (commendable before) God. For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile (deceit) found in his mouth: 

Who when he was reviled, reviled not again (in return); but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: By whose stripes (wounds) ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop (Overseer) of your souls.’ (1 Pet. 3:20-25) 

Yes mih people, if anybody should know about Christ is Peter, who walked with Him for three years on this earth and was an eye-witness to all he’s written. And if it doesn’t move you, or you just don’t believe, then there’s no more that I can say, because following Jesus is a personal decision. And I’m going to follow Him, to the best of my ability, hoping that the members of my household will do likewise. Much LOVE!

…Christians should be the happiest people on the planet…because heaven is eternal their home…