Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 July 2019 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.
 

Greeting and salutations this summer Thursday morning from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, to all who truly believe in Him and sincerely strive to be obedient to His holy will! Oh friends, it is necessary to believe in Jesus if you desire to be saved, but that’s just the easy part of it. To truly be a worthwhile part of His kingdom, we also need to obey His rules and regulations. 

I know some of you are going to say that is bunkum, because Christ died to get us away from the rules and regulations of religion. But just think for a moment, how can any organization survive and thrive unless there are some basic rules and regulations for those involved to follow? 

It won’t. It will just turn into a free for all with everybody wanting to and doing their own thing, which is the current reflection of our society, as well as Christ’s church; strife-filled, greedy, selfish, power hungry, filled with cliques that are resentful to each other, immoral, without true LOVE and forgiveness, etc. etc. 

You know that even in the kingdom of the wild animals there are basic rules, or more like basic behaviour patterns that they all uphold, because they know that if they don’t, their species are liable to suffer irreparable harm. But not the great creation, mankind, who behaves even wilder than the wildest wild animal, and will tear his fellow human being to shreds without even a pang of remorse. 

That’s the kind of world we’re living in now my people! A dog eat dog kind of society; where the first person singular is the most important, and the remainder can simply go suffer as best they can! But that’s not how Jesus expects His followers to live and behave. 

Listen to Him as He spells it out for the disciples. ‘As the Father hath LOVED me, so have I LOVED you: continue ye (abide) in my LOVE. 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.’ (John 15:9-10) Yuh see friends, even Jesus had rules from His Father to follow… and He followed them. 

As Bruh Paul puts it to the Philippians: ‘And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. (Phil.2:8) Yeh mih people, yuh think Jesus really wanted to die such a horrible sacrificial death as He did? No way! But because the Father asked, and He respected and LOVED the Father, He did it. 

That’s why the Father exalted Him thus, with the name that’s higher than every other name in the universe, and to whom all knees should bow and every tongue confess that He’s Lord, to the glory of the Father. (Phil.2:9-11) And my fellow believers, though Jesus’ sacrificial death was very important, in and of itself, what’s truly heart stopping, is His level of obedience to the Father’s wishes. 

He never did anything down here on earth without first consulting the Father, and throughout His entire earthly life always noted that He was doing the Father’s will not His own. In like fashion, we, Christ’s supposed followers in this age, His church in these trying and troubled times, ought to be very concerned about doing His bidding. 

Not fighting amongst each other, being hypocritical and compromising, and causing His body to get a bad reputation from the unbeliever, with people turning away from Him in droves. But that’s exactly what we’re doing these days. Yuh think if the majority of supposed Christians would behave like real Christians, walk their talk; our world would be in such a miserable, degraded and degenerate state? 

Of course not! But instead of being the salt and light that Jesus expects us to be, we are behaving just like the evil world; not merely being in it, as He desires, but woefully being a part of it! That’s not good enough my brethren, because all it does is bring disrepute to Christ and all that He stands for. I don’t know how we can stand up and call ourselves Christians when we don’t abide by His commandments. 

Listen to Him to the disciples again. ‘This is my commandment, That ye LOVE one another, as I have LOVED you. Greater LOVE hath no man that 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) 

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, it couldn’t be put any plainer than that! All Jesus requires of us is that we LOVE each other, and that simply means treat others kindly and with respect, and to do as He desires. And if we do, then He considers us His friend. The sad fact of the matter though is that right now too many of us are not His friends, because we’re not doing as He commands. 

But remember friends, we each will have to stand before Him on the judgement day and give account of our earthly lives, and when He tells us to stand on His left hand, not His right because we’re goats and not sheep, (Matt.25:31-46 – Please take a moment and read it), many of us will hold our heads and bawl, but then it will be too late. So please, let’s do as He commands now nuh, while we still have the ability to improve our standing in His organization. That’s wisdom of the highest order! 

And now, having preached fire and brimstone (smile) let’s go home declaring (yeh!) our Thursday Blessings, the Lord’s goodness and mercy so undeservedly showered down on us to help us do His earthly work. In full voice and sincere 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!’ 

Oh my people, what a wonderful God we serve and worship! No other deity would ever give us all those blessings, even if we deserved them. But remember, they are not for us to selfishly hoard, but to go out and generously share them with others as He generously shared them with us. Much LOVE!

…on the judgement day…to be counted as sheep and not goats…one must obey Christ’s commands…TODAY… 

P.S. Sorry that the Bit’s a tad late, but I went to bed in the early hours of the morning, and thus got up in the late ones. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 January 2019 Matthew 22:37-38.

Matthew 22:37-38.   ​Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt LOVE the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.

 

‘Winterlicious winter…lots of cold and snow. Winterlicious winter…why don’t you go…back to where you came from and leave us all alone eh?’ Now that’s a question that many of us in my area will be asking this morning as they struggle through the mucho snow left by the major snowstorm yesterday. 

I remember looking out the window after lunch yesterday and there was just the residue from the day before, but by mid afternoon when I looked out again, it was all white, and the flimsy flakes were falling down from heaven like rain! Hn! Hn! But that’s what winter is all about. 

We thought we were getting a nice, snow free winter, but that was just a fantasy, a figment of our imagination. As the repairman in the ad used to say: ‘You can pay me now, or pay me later.’ It’s the same thing with the snow, we can get it early or late, or even in between, but we will get it. End of story! 

Now having said, that here is something to counteract the negative concerns. It’s a quote from Gordon W. Allport (1867-1967) a pioneering American psychologist and Harvard professor. It’s said that ‘He rejected two of the dominant schools of thought in psychology at the time, psychoanalysis and behaviorism, in favor of his own approach that stressed the importance of individual differences and situational variables.’ 

Consequently, he was able to come up with this gem: ‘LOVE received and LOVE given comprise the best form of therapy.’ Mama Mia! What awesome words of wisdom! Friends, there’s nothing better in this land of the living than giving and receiving LOVE! That’s because it’s the greatest emotion in the world, the supreme attribute of our great God, and the one that caused Him to send His Son to die on the cross for us at Calvary to pay our sin debt in full! Glory Be! 

So how could it be anything but great eh, since its effects are ever so wonderful? I know many of us, including believers, shrug off or shirk away from LOVE because we’re afraid of the hurt it can bring and the vulnerability that it imposes on our souls. But just think for a moment, if our heavenly Father had thought about the hurt it would bring Him, do you think He would have sent His Son to die for a bunch of miserable, ungrateful sinners? Definitely not! 

And think again, if Jesus had considered the severe pain and vulnerability His LOVE for the Father and us would bring Him, He would have willingly gone to the cross on our behalf? No way Jose! That’s why, as believers in and followers of Jesus, we ought to embrace that wonderful attribute of LOVE as our watchword and guiding light! 

Remember Jesus’ answer to the hypocrite Pharisee lawyer who tried to trick Him by asking: ‘Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt LOVE the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.’ (Matt.22:36-38)

Yes friends, LOVE for God should be…no not should be, but IS our number One priority in this fallen world! And it’s not like the Pharisee didn’t know that, because all Jesus was doing there was quoting from the Old Testament, Deuteronomy 6:5. The foolish Pharisee even got more than he bargained for, because Jesus continued: ‘And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thy self. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.’ (Matt. 22:39-40) 

Oh my people, my people, from day one, when the Lord made us, it was all about LOVE! And when He sent Jesus to save us, it was still all about LOVE! And when Jesus comes a second time, to take us home to heaven with Him, it will still be all about LOVE! Some of us claim to abide by the first commandment, LOVE for God, but can’t get our heads around the second; LOVING our neighbours as ourselves. 

But friends, we can’t have one without the other. For as John so rightly says: ‘If a man say, I LOVE God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that LOVETH not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he LOVE God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who LOVETH God LOVE his brother also.’ (1 John 4:20-21) 

That’s as plain as night and day my brethren! Yet we foolishly try to have one without the other. Perhaps it’s because we DON’T LOVE OURSELVES, that we can’t LOVE our brothers! That’s something for us to check up on as soon as possible, because that might just be what’s hindering our LOVE walk. 

Oh friends, Jesus’ teaching was ALL based on LOVE and so should our lives ALL be based on it. Listen to this heart-opening directive as He wound down His earthly ministry. ‘A new commandment I give unto you. That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:34-35) 

Yuh see that friends, the distinctive recognition of our discipleship on Christ’s behalf must be that mankind sees our LOVE for each other! And I won’t even get into a discussion on whether we’re showing that distinctive difference, because we all know that we’re not showing it as much as we ought to. But yuh know what friends, come the judgement day, we’ll each have to answer as to why we did not keep that commandment. So nuff said! 

Let’s go home now declaring (got it right) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are – even though we’re not as good as we ought to be. (smile) As one voice, in all sincerity and truth: ‘In God’s eyes, 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 if we are sincere about that, then let’s indeed go out and spread the friendship and LOVE of Jesus with the world! Much LOVE!

…it’s so sad…that the evil emotion of hate…is so much easier to come by in this world…than the godly attribute of…LOVE…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 December 2018 1 John 4:8.

1 John 4:8.   ​He that LOVETH not knoweth not God; for God IS LOVE!
 
And then it was Boxing Day! Glory be! All the confusion done now! Christmas not over, but Christmas Day has come and gone and we’re going to gradually revert to our old selves, no longer having to keep up with the hectic pace set by the world’s standards, and oftimes our own too. Except for those of you who still get caught up in the Boxing Day sales! (smile) 

And you can see by the lateness of the hour that ole fella slept in…But that’s what days like these are for…to recuperate from the joyful celebrations of yesterday! (smile) Hope you all had a good and joyful Christmas. Mine was simple but pleasant. And brother…food for days and endless days! Enough to feed an army, much less five people! (smile) And the sad part is that the ole fella is no longer able to do justice to his once upon a time favourite foods. How sad eh! (smile) But them’s the breaks! 

I do hope though that we all kept Jesus first place in our minds and lives yesterday, since He WAS and IS the reason for all our celebrations! I also hope that we found a few moments amidst all the joy and excitement to sincerely pray for those unfortunate people over in Indonesia, who recently suffered the devastating effects of a volcanic explosion that seems to have triggered an immense tsunami that washed away their lives and livelihoods. 

Another group that didn’t enjoy a festive Christmas is one out on our West Coast in British Columbia, where they suffered devastating effects from a windstorm, the worst in some two decades. Prayers, and whatever other assistance we can offer, will be in order for them my friends. 

And my eyes just fell on a piece of paper in front of me that contains a most appropriate quote from a Daily Bread Devotional. And it says: ‘In the darkest hours of life, only through the eyes of faith can we see the LOVING hand of God.’ And is that ever so true my people! In those real dark and troublesome times it’s only if our faith is strong and true that we can ever imagine a LOVING God out there in the universe! 

Otherwise, all our senses would either say there is no God, or God is not a LOVING Deity. But friends I’m here to tell us that that’s the furthest thing from the truth! There IS a God, and He’s a MOST LOVING Deity! Thus John, in his epistle seeks to strengthen our faith by letting us know that ‘He that LOVETH not knoweth not God; for God IS LOVE!’ 

Yeh friends, one of the many attributes of our omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent God is that of LOVE! And if you don’t LOVE, then you don’t know God! Hear how John puts it: ‘Beloved, let us LOVE one another: for LOVE is of God; and every one that LOVETH is born of God, and knoweth God.’ (1 John 4:7) 

However, as the scholars explain: ‘4:7. Mere human LOVE apart from Christ’s redeeming presence and motivation falls short of LOVE in its fullest dimension as a human response to God’s perfect and infinite compassion (cf. 1 Cor.13).’ Yes my brethren, unless Jesus is involved in our LOVE WALK, then we’re not truly walking in the LOVE of God. That’s why the scholars pointed us to that famous chapter in 1 Corinthians, titled the ‘Way of LOVE!’ 

And in this Christmas season, we have the perfect example of God’s unconditional and everlasting LOVE! As John says: ‘In this was manifested the LOVE of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.’ (1 John 4:9) Ah mih people, to truly understand God’s great LOVE, we need to see how He demonstrated it. And it all began with His sending of Jesus into the world at Christmas time to put His most awesome plan into action. 

As John continues: ‘Herein is LOVE, not that we LOVED God, but that HE LOVED US, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.’ (1 John 4:10) Now that’s the real standard for true LOVE my fellow believers; God’s unmerited compassion for us! As Bruh Paul so bluntly and truthfully told the church at Rome: ‘But God commendeth his (demonstrates his own) LOVE toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom.5:8) 

Now only a truly magnanimous Deity would show such compassion for His enemies! And that’s also why John’s cry is so important in our faith community: ‘Beloved, if God so LOVED us, we ought also to LOVE one another.’ (1 John 4:11) Oh my friends in faith, there couldn’t be a more appealing cry than for more real and true Christian LOVE amongst out Christian community, especially in these dark and evil times, when the enemy seems to be in the ascendance! 

Let’s listen to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, as He pleaded with His disciples and also pleads with us: ‘A new commandment I give unto you. That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:34-35) 

Ah mih Christian breddren, that’s what our faith is all about; LOVE, especially at this Christmas time! So please, please, let’s stop breaking Jesus’ heart nuh, and begin showing true LOVE to each other, so that the world can see it and want to come to Him and receive the same unconditional LOVE that we have. That’s our basic purpose here on this earth. 

Now let’s go home sincerely and powerfully declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the whole world know our position in Christ! In unison now: ‘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 that future will be indeed more glorious than we can think or imagine! Much LOVE!

…let’s keep on talking our talk…and walking our walk…of LOVE…in Christ Jesus…Amen…

 

 

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!

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 March 2018 John 13:34.

John 13:34. A new commandment I give unto you, that ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another.

Well my friends and fellow believers it’s Friday, but a special Friday, one that only occurs once a year. And we call it Good Friday! I know some of us must be wondering how can we call a terrible Friday like that good, where our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ was horribly crucified, shamed and violated without remorse.

But it’s not what happened, so much as the reason for the happening and the resultant consequences. Christ was crucified, gave His life for us, so that we could have eternal life. He took ALL our sins on His shoulders, so that we could have the option to return to a right relationship with Almighty God. That’s what’s good about it friends!

The once and for all sacrifice, the once and for all payment for our sins, that’s what makes it good! Because of Jesus’ sacrifice, the Lord washed clean all our sins, forgave us of our disobedience and welcomed us back as His children. Wow! How can we not call such an event good eh?

True, it resulted in the terrible abuse and violence toward Jesus, but that was the only way for our sins to become paid up; forgiveness called for a blood sacrifice. And today, as we flock to the Lord’s house to sing His praises and glorify His holy name, let’s remember the significance of this day.

And as always, before we hear the word, let’s offer up some praise and worship with sacrificial voices to our heavenly Father. And today we’ll sing one of my all time favourites, one that I cherished since I was a boy growing up in Tobago.

It appropriately describes the scene that took place at Calvary, two thousand years ago. The words apparently were written by Cecil Frances Alexander (1818-1895) and the music by John H Gower (1855-1922) and it was based on the scriptural texts of John 19:16-20 and Hebrews 13:12.

Please sing with me: ‘There is a green hill far away, outside a city wall, where our dear Lord was crucified who died to save us all. We may not know, we cannot tell, what pains he had to bear, but we believe it was for us he hung and suffered there. He died that we might be forgiven, he died to make us good, that we might go at last to heaven, saved by his precious blood.

There was no other good enough to pay the price of sin, he only could unlock the gate of heaven and let us in. O dearly, dearly has he LOVED! And we must LOVE him too, and trust in his redeeming blood, and try his works to do.’

Yeh friends, the story’s told simply and tenderly, but the reality of it all is oh so heart wrenching and tear jerking! Just imagine an innocent man nuh, being crucified; one of the worse methods of death and punishment ever subscribed to by man, to pay for the sins of a motley, unappreciative group of people.

And the beauty of the story is that He underwent that gruesome ordeal without a word of complaint, because He knew that He was the ONLY person who could pay for the transgressions of the entire world, and besides, that was what His heavenly Father required of Him. As the Good Book says: He was ‘obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.’ (Phil.2:8)

Ah mih people, yuh see what Jesus did for us, for you and I? But how many of us are obedient to the Lord’s doing nowadays eh? Not as many as there should be. But let me point out the most important part of our hymn above: ‘O dearly, dearly has he LOVED! And we must LOVE him too, and trust in his redeeming blood, and try his works to do.’

Yes precious people of God, that’s all Jesus requires of us in return for His sacrificial death on this day so long ago: LOVE as He LOVED; trust in His redeeming blood; and do the work He wants us to do!

Oh, my fellow believers, it does look simple and sounds good on paper, but from personal experience I know that it’s not easy to do. However, if we are serious about living and working for Christ, we can do it with His help, because we know that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. (Phil. 4:13)

Now let’s turn to our Bit: ‘A new commandment I give unto you, that ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another.’ Yes friends, I purposely stayed away from the story of the cross, because we all know it and rehashing it isn’t going to make much difference at this stage of the game.

What we truly need to know and recognize is why Christ died for us; and the simple answer is that He LOVED us. And His earthly ministry was one of sincere LOVE. Plus the only new thing He told us is that we must LOVE each other as He LOVED us. And that LOVE is just treating each other and ourselves in a decent, pleasant manner, not necessarily going overboard in our attentions.

But unfortunately, in today’s cruel, crazy and godless society, those pleading words of Jesus have fallen on deaf ears. However friends and fellow believers in Jesus, I’m pleading with us, today, as we recognize Jesus’ immense sacrifice on our behalf, let’s learn that the lesson the cross really teaches us, is not one of death, but of LIFE and LOVE.

Jesus died because He LOVED us, and wanted us to have life eternal. Let’s show our appreciation by living the way He wants us to nuh. Much LOVE!

…living for Jesus…means living in LOVE…

P.S. Yes I know we didn’t sing the workingman’s song, or our Friday Chant, but this was a special Friday. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 February 2018 1 John 3:1a.

1 John 3:1a.   Behold, what manner of LOVE the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons (children) of God.  

And then it was Tuesday…and the much appreciated spring break amidst the winter season continues seemingly unabated. Oh Glory to God! And on top of that, both the sun and the SON are shining forth brilliantly today. Mama Yo! What more can a mortal man ask for eh? Not much really. 

But yuh know what, in our undeserving, sinful nature, our wonderful God gives us even more. Read with me, as I share this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s simply titled ‘You LOVE Me!’ 

‘God When I am wretched and weak You LOVE me. When I am steady and strong You LOVE me. When I am very right Or terribly wrong You LOVE me. When I talk too much Or laugh too loud Or sob too long You LOVE me. When I am quiet and serene You LOVE me. 

When I willingly obey You LOVE me. When I insist on my own way You LOVE me. When I fail to put you first You LOVE me. When I come running back to You You LOVE me. I need not beg You to LOVE me For You who are LOVE Cannot exist without LOVING. 

And yet this very day, dear God I have no real assurance Of Your LOVE at all. I wonder why?  (And the Lord answered)  BELOVED child The fact remains I LOVE you.’ 

Isn’t that something now mih people! Regardless of who we are, or how we behave, our amazing God LOVES US! Even when we don’t feel His LOVE, the indisputable truth still stands; He LOVES us! He just cannot help LOVING, because He is LOVE personified! 

And He caused me to share this particular poem today because He wants to remind us of that fact. He apparently sees that we don’t appreciate the true nature of His LOVE enough, that’s why we are so unsure and uncertain of ourselves in this crazy, troubled society. 

Please accept this reminder my fellow believers, and let it penetrate our hearts and minds right to the very core, so that we’ll never be in doubt, in any situation whatsoever, of our great God’s true and unconditional LOVE for us. It’s one of the elementary tenets of our faith, and if we can’t accept it without reservation, then our faith will be lacking, and won’t be able to grow and mature, as it ought to. 

That’s why John, in his first epistle thought it so necessary to remind us of God’s great LOVE for us, as stated in our Bit. ‘Behold, what manner of LOVE the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons (children) of God.’  

Ah mih breddren how can we not appreciate such an awesome bestowal eh? God didn’t have to, but He wanted to. Why? Because we are His; created by His hand, in His image, and we breathe His breath of life. And even though we have become sinful and disobedient, the facts of the matter cannot be changed. 

Now listen to the scholars on our Bit. ‘3:1. Bestowed is in the perfect tense, suggesting the enduring effect of the LOVE God has given. Believers are children of God by virtue of being born of Him (2:29). Jesus stressed a connection between how the world related to God and how it would in turn relate to Christ’s true followers (John 15:18). After ‘sons of God’ the phrase “And we are” should be added, according to many ancient manuscripts.’ 

Yeh friends, for some reason or the other that definitive statement got left out of our version of the Good Book, but there is no doubt that we are indeed children of God, once we are born again and believe in His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 

I think though that a part of the problem is that our minds are so small and finite, that we cannot truly grasp the concept of a mighty and holy God LOVING us, despite our sinful and blasphemous nature. But don’t we still LOVE our children though they are disobedient and go astray? So why should it be any different with God eh? Children are children, and fathers are fathers in whatever situation you place them. 

Now let’s look at a couple of scriptures that corroborate our Bit. John says in his gospel: ‘He (the true Light) was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. 

But as many as received him, to them gave he power (the right) to become the sons (children) of God, even to them that believe on his name. Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.’ (John 1:10-13) 

We couldn’t get more authority than that to become children of God. Now hear this most momentous and eye opening scripture, re the LOVE of God from John’s first epistle. ‘Herein is LOVE, not that we LOVED God, but that he LOVED us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. BELOVED, if God so LOVED us, we ought also to LOVE one another.’ (1 John 4:10-11)  

That’s our Christian faith in a nutshell right there my brethren. Please let’s practice it in all sincerity and truth nuh. Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are in strong voice. 

‘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 since we’ve declared it, let’s go out now and action it nuh! Much LOVE!

…regardless of what we have…if we don’t have LOVE…we are nothing…

 

 

 

 

 

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