Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 July 2018 John 15:10.

John 15:10.   If ye keep my commandments; ye shall abide in my LOVE; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his LOVE.

And then it was Monday; another hot summer’s day in this Canada Day long weekend! Wow friends! We’re celebrating 151 years of Canada’s existence! Granted that’s a short time in comparison to other countries, but we’re certainly doing it with a flair all our very own. No set of copy-cat ideas, be they good, bad or indifferent. 

Anyway, the celebrations will be ramped up to the max today, and before we go any further, let’s just be reminded of Granny’s warning; Sonny boy, drunk or sober, please mind yuh business! And is that ever a wise warning, because if you don’t mind your business, somebody else will mind it for you, and you don’t know what they will do to it. So please take serious precautions during these celebratory times. 

And since it’s Monday, it means that some people have to go to work…not us in Canada though! Praise the Lord! It also means that some people are miserable and complaining, so let’s trot out our Monday Morning Battle Hymn and sing it with gusto, to quell all those Monday morning blues. 

All together 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!’ 

And as always, the voices of those who aren’t going to work are the loudest and most enthusiastic, but also hoarse and somewhat hard to understand from the effects of too much celebrating. But be that as it may, I believe that all of us can benefit from the burst of adrenaline that our song produced, so let’s get a grip and just go out and serve our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ to the best of our ability nuh, because that’s all He asks of us. 

As He said to the disciples, and consequently to us: ‘If ye keep my commandments; ye shall abide in my LOVE; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his LOVE.’ Yes friends, it’s simple; to do Jesus work, we need to keep His commandments. And they are neither grievous nor harmful. 

Then He continues: ‘These things have I spoken unto you; that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.’ (John 15:11) Yuh see mih people, when we keep Jesus commands, we are filled with joy! Wow! So why don’t we do it eh? Is it perhaps that we don’t like the joy of the Spirit that keeping Jesus’ word provides? Who knows? 

Then He told them: ‘This is my commandment, That ye LOVE one another, as I have LOVED you. Greater LOVE hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.’ (John 15:12-14) 

Glory be mih breddren! We become Jesus’ friend when we obey His commandments…and even better than that He is the ‘BESTEST’ friend that ever existed, because He laid down His life for us! It couldn’t get any better than that! 

And please note what Jesus told the disciples earlier on. ‘A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another.’ (John 13: 34) That makes twice He declared that our LOVE for each other was ever so important. And why? ‘By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:35) 

And Jesus pounded it into their heads even further: ‘Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained (appointed) you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. These things I command you, that ye LOVE one another.’ (John 15:16-17) 

And they did LOVE one another as best they could, and went forth and brought forth good fruit, that’s why we know Jesus’ words now. Ah mih people, how often does Jesus have to remind us that we are His disciples, He chose us, not the other way around, and we are supposed to go out and bear good fruit for His name’s sake eh? And not the lackadaisical, frightened and shame-faced way that so many of us do it, when we do it. 

Remember friends, we all have to answer come the Big Day for what we did down here on earth. So it will be wise to get a move on and improve our planting and fruit bearing seasons. Much LOVE!

…they shall know them by their fruits…Christians that is… 

P.S. Please excuse the lateness of the Bit. I took a li’l poetic liberty (smile) and got some much needed sleep. Much LOVE!

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 March 2018 Revelation 3:15.

Revelation 3:15.   I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert (wish you were) cold or hot.

Awright mih breddren, another wonderful day on God’s great earth is upon us! Give Him thanks and praise! And you know what? I just checked the obits and none of our names or pictures are listed there! Wow! That must mean that we’re alive, alive and kicking, alive and kicking butt for Christ! (smile) I like that. 

It sounds like something we were meant to do. But are we doing it? To a certain extent yes, but definitely not as much as we ought to. The problem with our brand of Christianity these days seems to be that we are doing a lot of right things, but we are not doing them sufficiently. 

You know, you can give, volunteer, help, pray, whatever, show Christian attributes, but with a lacklustre attitude, no real passion for what you’re doing. It doesn’t seem to come from the heart, but from the mind. Like I’m supposed to do so and so, so I’ll do it, but not with any real zeal; a more legalistic approach than a heart-felt one. 

But Jesus calls for excellence, passion, and diligence in His followers. That reminds me of what He said to the church in Laodicea, through John’s vision in Revelation, our Bit for today. ‘I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert (wish you were) cold or hot.’ 

Ah friends, that’s exactly how Christ’s church is today. The zeal and passion for growing it, for enhancing Christ’s LOVE Revolution doesn’t’ seem to be present in sufficient quantity amongst its believers. We still seem to be too taken up with the matters of the world and not enough with those of heaven. 

And as Jesus continues after our Bit: ‘So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew (spit, vomit) thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods (have become wealthy), and have need of nothing: and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.’ (Rev.3:16-17) 

Yes my people, if we look at ourselves in truth, we will see that we are still too taken up with the things of the world and not those of God, thus Jesus’ reproach. 

Listen to these explanations from the scholars. ‘3:15-16. The church is likened to lukewarm water, or as being virtually worthless. Christ says He will “spew them out,” or eject them from His company. The hot waters of nearby Hierapolis were known for their medicinal qualities, whereas Colossae was known for its cold, pure water. 

But Laodicea was forced to receive water by aqueduct from other areas. By the time it arrived at Laodicea it was lukewarm and provoked nausea. The works of the Laodicean church were as worthless as the city’s lukewarm water. The description does not refer to a backslidden condition, but rather to their lack of genuine faith.’ 

Ah friends, although I don’t think our contributions to Christ’s church are totally useless, I do believe that they are not worthwhile enough because our faith is not strong enough. Too many of us are too scared, lazy and lackadaisical about our faith. We don’t stand up steadfast and strong enough for what we believe in. 

There is too much fence sitting and compromise in our behaviour and actions. And both those things lessen the strength of anything. We talk a good talk, but we don’t walk a good enough walk. 

That’s why Jesus commanded the church at Laodicea: ‘I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried (refined) in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment (garments), that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear (may not be revealed); and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.’ (Rev.3:18) 

I have to chuckle there friends, because nobody can turn a phrase like Jesus, can admonish you the way He does. And the scholars have this to say about that scripture. ‘3:17-19. Laodicea was famous for its wealth, its bankers, its medical school, its popular eyesalve, and its textile industry. 

Christ says that spiritually the people of the church are poor, blind, and naked. True wealth is found only in God’s grace. This church had no spiritual value (gold), virtue (white raiment), or vision (eyesalve). He urges the Laodiceans to repent of their lack of genuine faith and of spiritual understanding.’ 

Fellow believers in Christ, I believe that admonition of Jesus will also stand us in good stead today. Please, I implore us to stop running after the things and wealth of the world, because they will avail us nothing in the time to come. It’s time we raise the level of our faith and actions and concentrate on sincerely growing Christ’s church as personified by His LOVE Revolution. Why do you think He blessed us with our Thursday Blessings eh? So that we can lift Him up. 

Now let’s declare those blessings with a sincere heart and strong belief. ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

And if we truly believe, it, then let’s go out and share it with others as Christ desires, for a blessing is not a blessing until it’s declared. Much LOVE!

…Christ wants His followers to be either hot or cold…not in between…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 March 2018 Matthew 10:33.

Matthew 10:33    But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

And then it was the first of March… Can you believe it? January and February have passed us by like a whirlwind! It’s now an old year! (smile) Unfortunately though, not much has changed over the past two months, there is still an overwhelming amount of adversity, calamity and tragedy bombarding our world. 

Ungodliness is also taking a serious toll on our earthly fortunes, as lots of people, for whatever reason, unfortunately drift away from the ONE and ONLY TRUE LIVING GOD. How sad that is friends, knowing that so many of our fellow man stand the very good likelihood of missing out on salvation and eternal life with Christ. And there’s nothing more important that that, in this entire world! 

But as individuals, and as Christ’s body, the church, we can only do so much. However, I do believe that we’re not doing as much as we can. It’s doubtful that we’ll ever proselytize EVERYBODY on the planet, because there are just some stubborn, foolish, adamant people who will just flatly refuse to ever believe in Jesus, but we can surely give it a greater effort than we’re currently doing. 

Too many of us are too lackadaisical about communicating the gospel to others, and some simply refuse to do it for fear of confrontation, rejection or shame. But please remember the momentous words of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ in our Bit: ‘But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.’ Ah mih people, it couldn’t get any plainer than that nuh. 

And earlier on He said to the disciples: ‘Fear them not therefore (persecutors): for there is nothing covered (veiled), that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known. What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what hear ye in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops. And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.’ (Matt.10:26-28) 

Yes friends, there is no need to fear what man can do to us, because he can only kill the body, but we need to fear God, who can kill both body and soul. Thus, once we embark upon the pilgrim’s journey with Christ, we cannot afford to let fear of man put us off, but we have to keep on fighting the good fight to spread the gospel to ALL the world, because that’s our bounden duty. 

And as good soldiers in Christ’s army, we need to do our duty sincerely and proudly and with lots of courage. Please note what Jesus said right before our Bit. ‘Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.10:32) 

And the scholars enlighten us as to the meaning of our Bit and that verse. ‘10:32-37. Confess me means “Acknowledge that you belong to Me.” In reality, secret discipleship is a practical impossibility. Jesus constantly called for an open confession of Himself by His followers. That our confession is to be before men clearly indicates that a public confession of true Christian faith is a virtual necessity. 

The warning whosoever shall deny me is a comprehensive historical aorist tense, (hn!) referring not to one moment of denial (such as Peter’s), but to an entire lifelong resistance to Christ. Therefore, a single act of denial does not make one unworthy of being a disciple, but a refusal to confess Christ at all eliminates one from being a true follower of Jesus Christ.’ 

What more can I say eh mih breddren. The scholars hit the nail on the head. We either acknowledge Jesus in public, or we don’t. We can’t sit on the fence, scared and wishy-washy. That doesn’t work in Jesus’ organization. A lot of us want to reap the benefits of knowing Jesus but don’t want to put in the hard work those benefits require before they can become reality. 

Remember friends, in God’s economy, whatever you sow, that is what you’re going to reap. So don’t think you can deny Jesus and still get to heaven. As true believers in Jesus, we ought to proudly and courageously say and act like Bruh Paul: ‘For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek (Gentiles).’ (Rom.1:16) 

Yes my people, that’s how we ought to think of the gospel of Christ, because it is indeed powerful, remember, it’s like a two edged sword. That means we have to be very careful with it, not play around with it like some ordinary knife, else we’re liable to get cut very badly with it. (smile) So please, let’s sit and ponder today, how we are treating the gospel of Christ, and if we’re denying or confessing Him, because that’s the key to our eternal salvation. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings in strong voice and heartfelt sincerity. ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! 

I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! 

I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Oh what a magnanimous God we serve my people! Now let’s go out and share those blessings with others, as He intends for us to do. Much LOVE!

…you can’t sow rice and expect to reap peas…likewise…you can’t deny Christ…and expect Him to confess you before His Father…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 July 2016 Philippians 1:12

Philippians 1:12.    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.

‘TGIM! TGIM! Thank God it’s Monday!’ the Christian workers joyfully declared. ‘Thank God it’s Monday and we get to go back out into the cruel and oppressive work world and win souls for Christ! What a glorious endeavour!’ 

Oh friends, that’s the stuff dreams are made of! And please note that our wise and wonderful Creator would not have given us the gift of imagination, the power to dream, if He hadn’t wanted us to use it. 

And we must not dream too small either. I read just recently, I believe it’s in one of Gramps Schuller’s devotions (Robert H. Schuller), where he said that if you could accomplish your dream on your own, then it was too small. Our dreams have to be big enough so that we need to enlist God’s help with them. 

And that’s gospel truth my people! Dreams by definition are supposed to be bigger than us. And can you believe what monumental improvement, thinking like we opened with, would make to our war-torn and strife filled world! Mama Mia! 

But sadly I don’t see that change, that upliftment in Christian thinking happening any time soon. Thankfully though, there are no limits, no restrictions on dreaming. (smile) Now let’s keep that dream alive by singing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with the same enthusiasm and pizazz that we began with. 

So in sweet harmony and strong, melodious voice, let’s sing. ‘‘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 was beautiful my people! You could see the fire in Jesus’ eyes and the energy in His spirit as He vigorously swung His conductor’s baton, guiding us in song.  

Wow! What a wonderful beginning to this Monday morning! And with our motors firing on all cylinders, and the adrenalin coursing mightily through our bodies, let’s go out into the sinful and disgusting world and do what we need to do to truly win souls for Christ! 

And all God’s people gave a purposeful shout of ‘Praise the Lord, for He is indeed worthy of our praise!’ 

Oh friends, the ole fella’s certainly on a roll this morning! (smile) But what’s the purpose of living, if we can’t be in high spirits more often that we’re in low ones eh? What did Jesus say about His coming to earth? He came that we, the sheep of His marvellous flock could have life in abundance. (John 10:10) 

And it would be a sacrilege, a sin, to live an abundant life in a lackadaisical, doh care manner. Life was meant to be lived my brethren, so let’s live it nuh! And that doesn’t mean in lustful and worldly fashion, but in a godly and righteous manner.  

Now I want to introduce our Bit here that shows how our God works in mysterious though sometimes difficult ways for His followers. We’ll continue today, from where we left off yesterday, that is with the missive that Bruh Paul wrote to the Philippians while in jail in Rome. 

‘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.’ Now that’s a very interesting scripture my people. But let’s keep reading, before we try to dissect it. 

‘So that my bonds (chains) in (for) Christ are manifest (well known) in all the palace (by the palace guard), and in all other places (the rest of places). And many (most) of the brethren in the Lord, waxing (becoming) confident by my bonds (chains), are much more bold to speak the word without fear.’ (Phil.113-14) 

Ah friends, what a strange, but rather efficient way to spread the gospel. But our God is full of works that we can’t understand. Now the listen to the scholars: 1:12. Things… have fallen out means “have occurred.” Paul tells the readers that his imprisonment has occurred for the purpose of furthering or spreading the gospel. 

The word rather suggests that the Philippians were anticipating bad news as a result of Paul’s captivity. He informs them rather to the contrary. In His wisdom and sovereignty God has deliberately designed His servant’s present circumstances, as undesirable as they may be, for the gospel’s benefit. 

Two positive results of Paul’s imprisonment are given in verses 13,14. (1) Caesar’s palace learned the gospel from him (v.13); and (2) many Roman Christians were stirred to preach the gospel during his bondage (v.14).’ 

And who says our God doesn’t move in mysterious ways eh? The Lord caused Paul to be imprisoned so he could have the close attention of the palace guards. If he had been preaching out on the street corner, he would never have had the undivided attention of such a large and influential audience. 

And even better yet, because of Bruh Paul’s captivity, the brethren outside got confident, found confidence in the Lord and began preaching the gospel too without fear. Now friends, those last two words -without fear – are very important, because they show the level of maturity and spiritual strength that Roman Christians got from the whole situation. 

Likewise my fellow believers, many of us might be in tight or tough circumstances and wondering why, but the Lord has obviously put us there for a purpose. So please, instead of crying and complaining, consider Bruh Paul’s attitude and look around and see if there be any you can minister to, for God might just have put you there for that very purpose. 

And most important of all; please, let’s all preach the gospel of Christ WITHOUT FEAR, for in the gospel itself, we have oodles of protection. Much LOVE!

…in whatever circumstances a Christian finds him or herself…they are expected to share the good news of Christ…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 July 2016 Psalm 12:2‏

Psalm 12:2.   They speak vanity (idly, falsely) every one with his neighbour: with flattering lips and with double heart (an inconsistent mind) do they speak.

Well friends, the celebrations finally over! Canada Day and 4th of July done for another year! It’s time to get back to the common grind and daily task. And we’ll begin that by singing this favourite ode to Joy. 

In harmony now: ‘Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, God of glory, Lord of love; Hearts unfold like flowers before Thee, opening to the sun above. Melt the clouds of sin and sadness; drive the dark of doubt away; Giver of immortal gladness, fill us with the light of day! 

All Thy works with joy surround Thee, earth and heaven reflect Thy rays, Stars and angels sing around Thee, center of unbroken praise.Field and forest, vale and mountain, flowery meadow, flashing sea, Singing bird and flowing fountain call us to rejoice in Thee. 

Thou art giving and forgiving, ever blessing, ever blessed, Wellspring of the joy of living, ocean depth of happy rest! Thou our Father, Christ our Brother, all who live in LOVE are Thine; Teach us how to LOVE each other, lift us to the joy divine. 

Mortals, join the happy chorus, which the morning stars began; Father LOVE is reigning o’er us, brother LOVE binds man to man. Ever singing, march we onward, victors in the midst of strife, Joyful music leads us Sunward in the triumph song of life.‘ 

Good show friends, good show! Hope that joy stays with us all day as we focus on doing Christ’s work. 

Oh, and here’s a little story about that hymn. Apparently one Henry J. van Dyke wrote it in 1907. He wrote it while staying at the home of Harry A. Garfield at Williams College, Massachusetts. It was first published in the Pres­by­ter­i­an Hymnal in 1911. It also appeared in the Poems of Henry van Dyke, 1911.  

Van Dyke wrote: “These verses are simple expressions of common Christian feelings and desires in this present time—hymns of today that may be sung together by people who know the thought of the age, and are not afraid that any truth of science will destroy religion, or any revolution on earth overthrow the kingdom of heaven. Therefore this is a hymn of trust and joy and hope.’ 

And it surely is my people! So let’s continue to hold on securely to that trust and joy and hope we find in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, because it’s what keeps us truly grounded in this earthly life. It is our sure foundation. 

And to further build on that sure foundation, let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra like we truly believe it. As one voice now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

Oh glory to God my believing brethren! More solid and indisputable truth about the goodness and LOVING-kindness of our wonderful God! How reassuring and encouraging to know that we are His beloved children, and also the friend of Jesus! Nothing can be better than those two things! 

Now it’s our duty to go out and share the LOVE of our Lord and friend with the remainder of this our lost and quickly sinking world. But we can’t do it unless we’re very serious and diligent about counteracting the words and actions of our Bit. ‘They speak vanity (idly, falsely) every one with his neighbour: with flattering lips and with double heart (an inconsistent mind) do they speak.’ 

Yes precious people, that kind of ungodly activity is currently overwhelming our world, and obviously making it a place of hate and evil instead of one of peace and LOVE like our God and Saviour desire. These days one can hardly trust the words and actions of friends, much less strangers. 

Falsehood and flattery seem to be the name of the today’s game and they’re causing such havoc in the lives of so many people who are unfortunately coming under their spell. Bruh David declares in Psalm 41 –Abuse and assurance: ‘Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me (acted as a traitor against me). (Ps.41:9) 

No doubt a lot of us can attest to such traitorous treatment. That’s why we have to be ever so careful as to whom we let into our confidence. Meanwhile, in Bruh Paul’s epistle to the Romans, he quotes various scripture passages to prove the presence and extent of the problem back then. 

‘Their throat is an open sepulchre (grave); with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes.’ (Rom.3:13-18) 

And that’s the gospel truth friends! The enemy right now is the driver’s seat, but it is our job to dislodge him and replace him with Jesus. But again, as I said earlier on, we need to be very serious and diligent about that duty if we want to be successful. 

We can’t afford to be lackadaisical and wishy-washy in our words and actions. We need to come up higher than the enemy if we want to defeat him. We need to be able to sincerely declare like Bruh David when he fled from his son Absalom’s rebellion. ‘I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people, that have set themselves against me round about.’ (Ps.3:6) 

Yes my fellow warriors for Christ, until we can utter true words like those, until we can cast out our fear of the enemy, we won’t be able to break his stronghold on us and on the world. Remember, Jesus has already defeated hell, death and the grave, which means the enemy has no power over us unless we allow him to. 

So let us go out today, and everyday, with words such as these pouring out of our mouths and hearts. ‘We will rejoice in thy salvation, and in the name of our God we will set up our banners: the Lord fulfill all thy petitions.’ (Ps.20:5) 

Yes friends, we need to stand up very strong, steadfast and courageous in Jesus’ name, and battle to the death, if we truly want to defeat the enemy. There’s no other way. Much LOVE!

…Stand up stand up for Jesus…Ye soldiers of the cross…Lift high His royal banner…It must not suffer loss…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 April 2015 Matthew 5:14 ‏‏‏

Matthew 5:14.   Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.

Oh Friends, on this Saturday morning in late spring, the ole fella is befuddled; doesn’t know what to say. Hn! Can you imagine that?
 
Well it does happen to the best of us at times, and thank the Lord it doesn’t happen to me too often. And I’ve been writing the Bit for so long now that I know eventually, in God’s time, He will direct me to write something that perfectly fits His agenda.
 
That’s the kind of wonderful God He is. He doesn’t leave you in the lurch when he gives you a job to do. We just get impatient at times and try to go our own way, instead of waiting for God’s input. That’s when we get all confused and screwed up, for without the Most High leading the way, we will certainly get lost.
 
Remember Jesus is the Good Shepherd, and if we wait on His call He will guide us safely and in peace throughout our pilgrim’s journey. Aye Friends, I’m chuckling here, considering that it’s a good thing I had nothing to say. Brother! Imagine if I had something to say eh! (smile)
 
But in the meanwhile, while I’m waiting for the Lord to guide me, here’s an interesting quote of a few days ago, from my friend Anselm, in his most worthwhile effort to inspire us all for a better tomorrow. He says: ‘Someone once told me not to bite off more than I could chew. I told them I would rather choke on greatness than nibble on mediocrity.’
 
And that my people is a most worthwhile response for a believer and follower of Jesus Christ! For Jesus doesn’t want His followers to be steeped in mere mediocrity, but to be people of excellence, of integrity, of great character, exuding diligence and top of the line stuff!
 
Why do you think He drilled it into the disciple’s heads: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savor (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.’ (Matt. 5:13) That means we have to be better than average folks.
 
And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘5:13.The Beatitudes are followed by a summary statement of the basic character of the Christian’s life as salt and light. Ye are the salt of the earth: Again the phrase “ye are” indicates that only the genuinely born- again person can help meet the needs of the world.
 
Salt adds flavouring, acts as preservative, melts coldness, and heals wounds. Thus it is a very appropriate description of the believer in his relationship to the world in which he lives.’
 
And then Jesus drops the other philosophical bomb on them, in the words of our Bit. ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.’ And that’s an indisputable fact Friends! A city that’s sits on a hill and is lit up, can be seen for miles around.
 
And Jesus continues: ‘Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lampstand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:15-16)
 
And the scholars explain those two verses thus: ‘5:14-16. Ye are the light of the world describes the essential mission of the Christian to the world. He is the condition (salt) to meet the world’s needs and he has a mission (light) to the world. His light is to clearly shine forth into the darkness of human depravity.
 
He is to set his light upon a candlestick, not hide it under a bushel, that is, a basket. Darkness is the absence of light; and darkness alone cannot dispel the light, but the smallest light can dispel the greatest darkness.’
 
Words to live by my brethren! Light is the master of darkness, just like Jesus is master over Lucifer! So please let’s remember that we are here to perform an important job; show the world what Jesus is all about.
 
That means we can’t be wishy-washy and lackadaisical, but as Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) is won’t to say: ‘We must look our best, do our best and be our best!’ That’s the picture Jesus wants us to show the world.
 
So Friends, let’s ponder all that we’ve said today, then try to put it all into action in our lives, so that we can be excellent ambassadors for Jesus. That’s our raison d’etre! Much LOVE!
 
…to glorify God…we need to always put our best foot forward…be flavourful salt…and be brilliant light… 
 
P.S. Oh Friends, it’s pretty short today, so there’s no need to complain. I guess I really didn’t have anything much to say. (smile) Much LOVE! 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 April 2015 Psalm 139:7‏

Psalm 139:7Whither shall (where can) I go from thy spirit? Or whither shall (where can) I flee from thy presence?  

Ah Friends, two very important people in my life have died in the last two days. Yesterday it was Jesus, the day before it was Gramps Schuller – Robert H Schuller (1926-2015), the visionary who melded Christianity with the Positive Thinking of Norman Vincent Peale.

 
Gramps Schuller was the man who began a church in Orange County in California in a drive in theatre, where he would preach from the rooftop of the snack bar, while his wife Arvella played the organ.  Then he went on to build a drive in church, and then the fabulous glass based Crystal Cathedral. How could you build a glass cathedral in California, with all it’s eartquakes and seismic faults, unless you had great vision and strong, positive faith in Almighty God?
 
I was introduced to him some years ago by my mother, via the Hour of Power programme on television, and I believe of all the ministers I’ve listened to He impressed me the most, both by what he said and how he said it. He was always enthusiastic and positive, and I know some people criticized him for that. But what’s wrong with having a positive outlook in Christianity eh?
 
What did Jesus preach about?  Believing in God, but you can’t truly believe in anything with a negative mind set. Jesus never went around sour and miserable and negative as a lot of Christians think they should.
 
And here is Gramps Schuller’s ‘Possibility Thinker’s Creed,’ or what some refer to as ‘The Mountain Mover’s Prayer.’  ‘Lord, when I face a mountain, do not let me quit. Give me the strength to keep on striving until I climb over, find a pass through, or tunnel underneath. And if my best efforts fail, give me the patience to stay and the perception to see the possibilities of turning my mountain into a gold mine with your help. Amen.’ 
 
Now tell me what’s wrong with that eh Friends? Not a single thing! It’s certainly the attitude we supposed Christians ought to adopt, instead of the lackadaisical, give up easily mentality that so many of us have. And I can still remember Gramps Schuller some years ago reading these verses from Psalm 139, including our Bit. The way he delivered them was very expressive, and oh so powerful:
 
‘Whither shall (where can) I go from thy spirit? Or whither shall (where can) I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there; if I make my bed in hell, behold thou art there, If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.’ (Ps.139:7-10)
 
Oh Friends, that’s obviously gospel truth, but Gramps Schuller made you feel it. I don’t know about anybody else nuh, but as far as I am concerned the Hour of Power was the BEST programme on the tube when it originated from the Crystal cathedral! I say that because it was a beautiful visual production, and you got a wonderful blend of everything; religion and church, interviews with interesting people, and by far the BEST music. The Hour of Power Choir is still my favourite.
 
It’s sad though that in 2011 the Crystal Cathedral had to be sold into bankruptcy because of a large debt, family feuds and other internal wrangling. It just goes to show that even in the best, or most religious families, there can be serious problems. And who do you think bought the Crystal Cathedral and renamed it Christ Cathedral? The Catholic Church of Orange County California.
 
Anyway, the Hour of Power Programme is still on the tube, but comes from a smaller, ex-Catholic church, called Shepherd’s Grove. It is run by Gramps Schuller’s grandson, Bobby. It doesn’t make such a big splash, as it did in the Crystal Cathedral, but it’s still amongst the best and most wholesome viewing on the tube.
 
Dr. Schuller was also a prodigious writer, penning some 50 books, with at least five of them best-sellers on the New York Times list. He apparently passed away in a nursing home from esophageal cancer that struck him in 2013. Regular readers of the Bit know that I hold him in high esteem and often feature some of his stuff from the Hour of Power Devotional.
 
Here is a passage from yesterday’s journal. It’s titled ‘Winter’s Cold,’ and it says: ‘I never fail to remind new Christians who join our church that there are seasons in the spiritual life. For most people the beginning of the Christian life is a spring time experience. The icy sea of doubt is broken; a new life springs from a cold heart. No wonder people describe it by saying, “I’ve been born again!” This is the springtime season of the soul.
 
When the Christian matures through the disciplines, there is growth, sometimes painful, in exposure to the summer sun and wind, and finally the ripening of the fruit. The harvest season arrives and you offer to God the fruit of a life of service. And, strangely, it is after a period of fruitful service that the winter time comes.’
 
Ah Friends, how true that is, especially in Dr. Schuller’s life. After a long life of service to God and many successful seasons of harvesting good fruit, the winter of his discontent set in, through illness, family and financial problems. May he rest in peace with his God.
 
And we’ll end today with a scripture from Jeremiah that certainly validates our Bit and the verses that accompany it. The Lord’s talking about false prophets, and asks these questions? ‘Am I a God at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God afar off? Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the Lord.’ (Jer.23:23-24)
 
Oh Friends, our God is certainly a faithful, hands on, always right here by our sides God, not some fly-by-night, never present deity. And if we believe that He’s omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent, then there’s no place in His universe that we can ever successfully hide from him.
 
Some of us foolishly try to do that though, but eventually, hopefully sooner rather than later, they will find that hiding from our God is simply impossible, and will instead run to His outstretched arms and enjoy the comfort and LOVE that’s waiting there for whosoever wants to embrace it.
 
That’s basic common sense and a touch of godly wisdom thrown in for good measure! (smile) Much LOVE my brethren on this Easter Saturday morning!
 
 …just one more day…just one more day…so please wait patiently for it…with eager expectation…for it will come…the promise will come…it will not tarry…