Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 October 2019 Psalm 146:5.

Psalm 146:5.    ​Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord God.

 

Welcome to another day in the life friends, as God’s great universe unfurls as it should! Yes, however He’s planned it to unfurl, that’s how it will! And it’s unfurling in my neighbourhood as a wet and cloudy morning. Oh, yesterday I saw the prettiest set of rain I’ve seen around here in a long while, powerful and persistent, for almost half an hour, and not the drizzly type of rainfall we’ve been recently getting. But early this morning it did it’s drizzly thing again. (smile) 

Anyhow, though we don’t have the sun, we do have the SON; and that’s even better, for He is always riding shotgun with us, if we allow Him to. And in the fateful words of Bruh Paul, may the grace and peace of our marvellous God be with all you precious saints of Christ! And all those saints said a loud and proud and grateful ‘Amen!’ 

And now to boost our mid-week confidence, let’s say this Prayer of Confidence as drawn up by Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) in his Hour of Power Devotional. Please pray with me. ‘It is flowing into me now, for my conscience is clear. I have made the right decisions. I am not afraid of problems. I will face challenges calmly and serenely. For God is behind me. He will help me. 

If I must go through difficult times, He will rescue me. I feel His spirit of confidence surging in my heart now. With Him I cannot possibly fail. “If God is for me who can be against me?” I have a strong feeling that everything is going to work out just beautifully. Thank You, God! Amen!’ 

And friends, if you said that sincerely, I know that a flow of confidence is now surging through your soul. All thanks be to our wonderful heavenly Father and His powerful Holy Spirit that dwells within us, and leads and guides us inALL situations for our good! And that’s why we can therefore acclaim: ‘Something good is going to happen to me today!’ As well as: ‘Something good is going to happen through me today!’ That’s the confidence we have in our omnipotent and magnanimous God! 

And today, all we want to do is to highlight some scriptures on confidence. First, we’ll begin with what we should not do. Hear the psalmist from Psalm 118 – Thanksgiving for the Lord’s salvation. ‘It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes.’ (Ps.118:8-9) And just for your info, the scholars tell us that verse 8 above is the middle verse of the Bible. 

And all of that flows smoothly into Psalm 146 – The blessedness of trusting God. ‘Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man (a human being), in whom there is no help (salvation). His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord God.’ (Ps.146:3-5) And if you want to hear why the psalmist says so, please read the next five verses. (smile) 

Then Cousin Sol wisely tells us: ‘Be not afraid of sudden fear (terror), neither of the desolation (trouble) of the wicked, when it cometh. For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken (caught.) (Prov.3:25-26) What wonderful words of advice my people! 

And hear Cousin Sol again nuh: ‘In the fear of the Lord is strong confidence: and his children shall have a place of refuge.’ (Prov.14:26) Mama Mia! Does that ever boost one’s spirit! Yeh friends, true reverential awe of our great God imbues us with strong confidence! 

Meanwhile, the author of Hebrews puts it this way: ‘Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience (endurance), that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.’ (Heb.10:35-36) Yes my people, with God, patience and endurance mean a lot. We show our true colours, our confidence in Him when we do His will, then wait quietly and patiently for any reward that’s forthcoming. And usually there is. 

Now hear John from his epistle, re the children of God and righteousness. ‘And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before him at his coming. If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth (practices) righteousness is born of him.’ (1 John 2:28-29). 

And the scholars explain: ‘2:28. Wishing to please the Lord, and not be ashamed before him at his coming, ought to motivate believers to stand firm, to abide in him.’ And so it should be, my fellow believers! If we believe He is righteous and truthful, and will keep all His promises, then that certainly ought to motivate us to stand strong and steadfast in His word! 

And finally, more wise words from John. ‘These things I have written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God. And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us. And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired (asked) of him.’ (1 John 5:14-15) 

And the scholars tell us: ‘5:14-15. Assurance of salvation (vs.13) leads to confidence in petition. Effectual prayer isaccording to His will.’ And so it is my faithful brethren! If our prayers aren’t in accord with God’s will, we’re simply wasting our time praying them. But when we have the confidence that we’re doing His will…oh what a happy day it is! 

And today’s just such a day! So please let’s go home now declaring (yeh!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know our position, our great confidence in the Lord Jesus Christ. With loud voice and sincere sincerity (smile): ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And yes, that eternal future with Christ will be more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…faith and confidence in Almighty God…is what allows us…to move mountains here on earth…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 July 2019 Matthew 16:24.

Matthew 16:24.    ​If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
 

And the alarm goes off…and suddenly you are catapulted out of a sweet dream…and you steups and get up grumpily mouthing: ‘Chuh Blast! And just as the so and so dream was starting to rock yes! This blooming alarm and work nonsense going to be the death of me yes!’ Ah friends, in how many darkened bedrooms are those kinds of scenes playing out right now eh? Too many! 

Welcome to the real world my people! It’s Monday morning and work is a calling. That place where you earn your daily bread; where you make the dough to keep a roof over your head and food on your table and clothes on your back…oh and the place that enables you to send your children to that expensive and elite private school. Yes, that place is crying out for you to get up and get in your new, expensive chariot and hit the traffic jam, so you can get downtown to the concrete jungle jaded and tired, to begin a new week of the never-ending rat race we so glamourously call work! (smile) 

And so many of us are tired of it, would rather retire to the peaceful and quiet countryside. But that’s somewhat like a pipe dream if we want to keep on enjoying our current lifestyle. And the pressure has become so much that we can no longer handle it all in our own strength. Yes friends we need help, supernatural help!  That’s why we have this antidote for whatever ails you on any workday morning, but particularly on a Monday, which is usually the hardest day of the week to get up. We simply call it our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, where we cry out to out wonderful God for grace and mercy to get out there and fight in His holy name. 

So all together now, let’s approach the throne of grace with confidence and sincerely pray: ‘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!’ 

Yes mih people, how can our compassionate and considerate God ever turn down such a sincere prayer request eh, especially if it’s prayed in His Son’s name? He just can’t! That’s why you’re now feeling the rush of adrenaline and the belated enthusiasm to go to work! The Lord has ordered our guide and helper, His Holy Spirit, which dwells within each believer, to activate the necessary controls to make us bright eyed and bushy tailed, so we can go out into the evil world full of spunk, full of…whatever and vinegar (smile) and fight victorious battles on Jesus’ behalf. 

And all God’s people said a loud and proud: ‘Glory to God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit! They are indeed the best guardians a human being can ever have!’ And all His saints shouted a glorious ‘Amen!’ So be it!’ But friends, please realize that truly and sincerely serving Jesus is not all wine, song and roses. The test of true discipleship is indeed rough, as Jesus said to the disciples: ‘If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.’ 

Tough words those my brethren, but that’s the reality of the situation. If we really want to follow Jesus, we’ve got to sacrifice our wishes and dreams and take up our cross and follow Him. And the scholars have an interesting explanation on ‘Take up: The meaning is “lift up.” It is a stronger word than that used in 10:38 – “And he that taketh not his cross…’ – and implies a lifting of the cross on high, so that all may see it. This is the strongest statement in the New Testament about the disciple’s need to crucify himself, by yielding to the claims of Christ’s lordship over him.’ 

Yes fellow saints, we can’t serve Jesus only in private and expect to get any citations. Remember He said whoever is ashamed of Him and denies Him in public, He will do the same to them before the Father. (Matt.10:33) And sadly, a lot of supposed Christians try to hide their faith through fear of the consequences, but as Jesus also said to one fellow who wanted to follow Him, but desired to go home first and bid his family farewell. ‘No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.’ (Luke 9:62) 

Ah mih people, that refers to the way to plough a perfect furrow (row). Once you’ve begun to plough it, you can’t look back or it will not end up in a straight line. As the scholars say: ‘One who makes life’s lesser matters of greater priority than God’s work is of little use to Him.’ Similarly, you’re not ‘suitable’ or ‘usable’ in God’s service if you keep looking back instead of forward. 

And it’s something we say every week in our Wednesday Wail: ‘We’re not looking back, our hands are securely on the plough. We’re looking forward to a glorious future with Christ.’ Now let’s go out and prove that this Monday morning nuh my fellow believers! Let’s show them that we are fit for service to Christ, as we lift our crosses high and honour Him! Much LOVE!

…the true disciple… doesn’t mind sacrificing his desires…for those of Christ…