Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 September 2018 1 Timothy 6:12.

1 Timothy 6:12. ​   Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast pro​fessed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.

 

One more time unto the breach, dear friends, one more time! Yeh, I’ve got another medical appointment this morning, that’s why the Bit is so early again. The good thing though is that I don’t have to go into Toronto, it’s just some diagnostic testing not too far down the street from me. 

But I do have to fast for it, and fasting, or rather forced fasting and I are not the best of friends. The ole stomach is here growling away on me, calling for food, but I still have a few hours to go until I can grant it its request. (smile) But as they say, it’s all for my benefit. So just suck it up, grin and bear it! 

That brings us to this bit of good advice attributed to James J Corbett (1866-1933), the American Heavyweight fighter, better known as ‘Gentleman Jim.’ He advises: ‘Fight one more round. When your feet are so tired you have to shuffle back to the centre of the ring, fight one more round.’ And that from someone who knows what He’s talking about through personal experience! 

Yes my brethren, that’s what we Christians are called to do; fight one more round, even though we feel at the point of exertion, be it physical, mental or emotional. Oh, I know many of us are tired, what with all our personal problems, including health, wealth and friendship matters, but as believers, we’re not supposed to give up. Giving up doesn’t exist in Jesus’ vocabulary. 

And further still, they say that the darkest hour is the one just before the dawn, so if you’re seeing what you consider a very dark hour, please believe that relief is right around the corner. Remember the mind is the most powerful tool in the world, and what we believe we can achieve. We have to use what resources we possess to our best advantage and keep on keeping on. 

As Bruh Paul cautioned Timothy in his first missive: ‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things (LOVE of money, hurtful lusts, material wealth.); and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast pro​fessed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.’ 

And as the scholars say of our Bit: ‘6:12. The good fight concerns the daily struggle with sin in the Christian life, and the hardships and adversities in the ministry. A genuine believer demonstrates the reality of his faith by being engaged in this warfare. Lay hold on eternal life does not negate the fact that a believer now possess spiritual life (John 3:36); rather, it speaks of fully realizing or appropriating salvation as the believer matures.’ 

Ah mih breddren being a true believer in Jesus Christ is not easy, but since we have declared ourselves to be true believers, we have to just keep on keeping on. And it’s not like we don’t have ample resources and encouragement, assurance and help to fight our earthly battle. We do! Namely all the resources granted to us as believers in Jesus Christ; the biggest and most important ones being salvation and eternal life. 

As the Good Book declares: ‘He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth (remains) on him.’ (John 3:36) Oh friends, that provision alone ought to be enough to encourage us to stand strong and live and defend our faith. Which other faith has that sure promise eh…with the sacrifice, and resurrection of Christ to back it up eh? NONE! 

And then we have so many other promises of God, who has a good plan for every life, with a hope and good future. He’s also promised never to leave nor forsake us; to hear our prayers and pleas when we diligently and sincerely seek Him; to bring us out of the fire unscorched; to take us safely through the flood, and most of all grant us a Deliverer, a Messiah, one to sacrifice and atone for our sins, which He did through His only Son Jesus Christ becoming flesh and offering His sinless life upon the cross at Calvary so that our sins could be washed white as snow. 

Glory to God my people! For He has done all that He’s promised, and if we do what we’re supposed to do, then He will do the rest. The Lord will not do it all for us. He requires us to put in an effort on His behalf, since we’re partners in this New Covenant. So though life might be dark, dreary and difficult, we do have all the tools necessary to fight the good fight. 

And hopefully, at the end of our days, we’ll all be able to proudly say like Bruh Paul did to Timothy: ‘I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that LOVE his appearing.’ (2 Tim.4:7-8) 

Yes mih breddren, what a joyful day that will be! But until then, let’s keep fighting the good fight nuh, and as a promise of our faithful intentions, go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our current position in Christ. All together now, let’s wail: ‘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 the future will be even more glorious than our puny minds can imagine. So think on that nuh! Much LOVE!

…when life gets difficult…consider our rewards in heaven…and the glorious future promised us there…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 June 2018 Job 37:23.

Job 37:23.   Touching the Almighty, we cannot find him out: he is excellent in power, and in judgement, and in plenty of justice (abundant justice): he will not afflict (oppress).

Once again, during the night, the Lord blessed the earth in my area with showers of blessings. As the Good Book says: ‘He watereth the hills from his (upper) chambers: the earth is satisfied with the fruit of thy works. He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and the herb (vegetation) for the service of man; that he may bring forth food out of the earth; And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man’s heart.’ (Ps.104:13-15) 

Oh friends, our God is so wonderful that He gives us all that we need to survive, and not only survive, but to prosper on this bountiful earth that He has created for us to dwell on. Why then are we so lax, so ungrateful in thanking Him for His ongoing grace and mercy eh? And why instead do we feel it necessary to vilify, to defame and debase Him? 

On this side of the world we’ve gotten so used to prosperity that we’ve come to take it for granted, and even to believe that it is of our doing. But are we ever so wrong my breddren. Remember the questions that God asked of Job, when Job got a li’l too bright with himself. 

‘Gird up now thy loins like a man (prepare yourself); for I will demand of thee (question thee), and answer thou me. Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if thou hast understanding.’ (Job 38:3-4) 

Obviously Job could not answer. Neither could he answer any of the whole host of questions that God poured at him in both chapters 38 and 39. The scholars say the questions number about 83. ‘The significant thing about these questions is that Job cannot answer a single one! God was driving home the point that Job must let God be God, the sovereign and omnipotent Creator who answers to no one.’ 

Ah mih breddren, the very same thing applies to us today. We cannot answer any of the questions the Lord posed to Job back then either, we just have to know that God is great and is always around and is always doing His thing and conform to whatever He desires and declares. 

Thus we come to our Bit, the immortal words of Job’s friend Elihu: ‘Touching the Almighty, we cannot find him out: he is excellent in power, and in judgement, and in plenty of justice (abundant justice): he will not afflict (oppress).’ Yeh friends, our minds are too small and limited to understand all that God is about, therefore we ought to fear Him. 

As Elihu summarizes: ‘Men do therefore fear him: he respecteth not any that are wise of heart.’ (Job 37:34) And isn’t that the gospel truth my people! God respects, have no use for, abhors those who let their foolish pride make them feel superior to Him. And remember the seven deadly sins that Cousin Sol declares are an abomination to God? (Prov.6:16-19) Well the first one is ‘a proud look (haughty eyes).’ 

And Bruh David tells us of the Lords purpose in Psalm 101: ‘Whoso privily (secretly) slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off (destroy): him that hath a high look and a proud heart will not I suffer (endure).’ (Ps.101:5)  

And with all of that, I think we need to be reminded of Bruh Paul’s words to Timothy, re fighting the good fight of faith, staying strong and steadfast in ‘the daily struggle with sin in the Christian life and the hardships and adversities in the ministry.’ ‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things (shun the LOVE of money and material wealth): and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. 

Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses. I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth (gives life to) all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession. That thou keep this commandment without spot (blemish), unrebukable (blameless), until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: 

Which in his times he shall show (manifest), who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see; to whom be honour and power everlasting Amen.’ (1 Tim.6:11-16) 

Yeh friends, living the true Christian life is not easy, but if we are serious about it, with God’s help we can do it. Remember NOTHING is impossible with God! And also we can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens us. So let’s get with the programme nuh. And to help us do that, let’s acclaim our Thursday Blessings in strong voice with sincere hearts. 

As one now: ‘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 in true Christian fashion, let’s go out and share all those blessings with the less fortunate, as Jesus so greatly desires of us. Much LOVE!

…when Jesus returns…do we want to be numbered amongst the sheep…or the goats…that’s the eternal question…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 June 2018 1 Timothy 6:6.

1 Timothy 6:6.     But godliness with contentment is great gain.

All right friends and family, here we go again; one more time around the dog and pony track called Life. (smile) And though it’s oftimes a difficult journey, it certainly is an interesting and adventuresome one, made even more interesting and fruitful if you’re walking hand in hand with Jesus, the great Saviour of the world! 

Wow! What an awesome guide and leader He is! And if you’re not walking with Him, then unfortunately you’re missing out on the best part of this earthly life, and consequently the eternal life too. So please check Him out nuh. You’ll be surprised at what He has to offer…and it’s all for your benefit. 

And with it being Saturday, let’s turn to some quotes of this past week from our friend Anselm, who genuinely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And we’ll begin with the shortest one: ‘When you think positive good things happen.’ 

And that’s generally true. It doesn’t mean that you won’t have any negative things happen, but they will be mostly positive, since what the mind focuses on, is what generally comes to pass. 

And like Anselm was in a friend seeking mood this week (smile) as he offers these two quotes on the subject. ‘There is a misconception among people that the higher the number of friends you have, the more fun you’ll have. The fact is the lesser friends you have, the lesser you have to deal with. 

Trust me; it doesn’t matter how many friends you have, all that matters is how many friends you can count upon when you are in need.’ And ‘Having a single best friend is better than having ten random friends who aren’t going to be with you for long.’ 

Oh my people, how many of us have suffered betrayal and rejection by those we thought were friends eh? We all have, because it’s a human frailty. The wisdom lies in having a few staunch and genuine friends you can call on in times of need. A big posse is not a set of friends, but a group of hangers’ ons. And remember the corollary to the above; to have genuine friends, you must also be a genuine friend. 

Then there is this last one: ‘You are living in your comfort zone, having an active Internet connection, food to eat, TV to watch and a roof to sleep under. Do remember that even if you have only these four basic amenities, you are richer than 75% of the world’s population. Be happy for what you have, but don’t settle for it.’ 

I would say that you are better off than more than 90 percent of the world, and you shouldn’t just be happy, but be darm happy and contented and feel extremely blessed, because there are so many others in the world struggling and suffering with much less than you have. 

But unfortunately the nature of our society is that the more we have, the more we complain about the few things we don’t have. We never seem to value sufficiently the things we do have, always seeking for more, when we don’t even have the time or the resources to handle it. And it just results in a greedy and selfish society, of which we are the cream of the crop. 

But Bruh Paul’s words to Timothy in our Bit should be the norm in our society. ‘But godliness with contentment is great gain.’ And isn’t that the gospel truth my brethren? It surely is! When we have God first place in our lives we’re not selfish or greedy, because He induces a peace and contentment in our souls regardless of our particular situations. 

And the verse following our Bit highlights the ridiculousness of fighting and killing ourselves over the material wealth of the world. ‘For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.’ (1 Tim.6:7) 

And the scholars offer this very interesting explanation of that verse. ‘6:7. And it is certain we can carry nothing out (or, “because we are unable to carry anything out”): Man enters the world at birth possessing nothing, in order to teach him that he will exit the world in the same manner – taking nothing with him. This is a divine means of showing man that since material wealth is relatively insignificant, he should pursue the important things mentioned in verse 11.’ 

And those things include ‘righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience and meekness.’ Now here is this very seminal verse as Bruh Paul continues: ‘And having food and raiment (clothing) let us therewith be content.’ (1 Tim.6:8) 

The scholars explain: 6:8. This verse prevents the wrong understanding of verse 7, that material possessions have no place in the Christian’s life. By figure of speech food and raiment stand for all of life’s basic necessities. These are all the believer needs, and having these he can be content.’ 

However, contentment is not a mainstay of our current society. We are more apt to follow this agenda that Bruh Paul talks about. ‘But they that will be (desire to be) rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful (harmful) lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition (ruin and destruction). 

For the LOVE of money is the root of all (kinds of) evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith (for which some in their greediness have strayed from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.’ (1 Tim.6:9-10) 

Ah mih people, the desperate seeking after money and the material possessions of this world only cause more problems than they solve. So please, let’s stop it nuh, and follow Christ’s wise advice: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt.6:32) That’s all there is to it! Much LOVE!

…you cannot serve God and mammon (money)…at the same time… (Matt.6:24b)

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 October 2017 Luke 6:38.

Luke 6:38.   Give, and it shall be given unto you: good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom (pocket). For with the same measure that ye mete (use) withal it shall be measured to you again.

It’s a brand new day friends, so rise and greet it with joy and enthusiasm! Oh yeah! It’s also Saturday, which means some of us want to sleep in. Well then sleep in with joy and enthusiasm! (smile) 

The important thing is that we have the joy of Jesus in us in whatever we do or don’t do. Let His wondrous Spirit simply lead and guide us wherever He may want us to go. But sadly, allowing the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us is a problem for many believers. 

We either can’t decipher what He wants us to do, or simply don’t want to go where He wants to lead us. But friends, as Christians, the Holy Spirit is our divine guide here on earth, so if He is not leading us, then we’re not being divinely led. As simple as that! 

So please, let’s get wise and ask the Lord to help us understand when the Holy Spirit speaks to us, so that we can faithfully and trustingly follow Him, and thus do God’s will. Now let’s see what quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, in his noble intention to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

This first one says: ‘Don’t worry about those who talk behind your back. They’re behind you for a reason.’ And I guess that makes sense. If people need to talk behind your back, then that means they have no parts, and you have no use for them. 

That leads us to this quote: ‘Sometimes you just need to distance yourself from people. If they care, they’ll notice. If they don’t, you know where you stand.’ And is that ever so true my brethren! These days people are so deceitful and disgusting that we have to be very careful about whom we associate with. 

And sometimes the Holy Spirit will just lead us away from those who don’t fit into our divine programme. And as the quote says, ‘If they care they’ll notice.’ And if they don’t, then you’ll know they were never on your side in the first place. 

And emotionally, that can be tough, but as our next quote comforts: ‘Sometimes when things are falling apart they may actually be falling into place.’ Yeh, so if you seem to be losing people from your inner circle, it might actually be a good thing. 

The Lord might just be purging the ones you don’t need anymore to rise up and do His will. So ‘Don’t waste words on people who deserve your silence. Sometimes the most powerful thing you can say is nothing at all.’ 

Remember the age-old saying that silence is golden, and Cousin Sol’s words that even a fool is considered wise when he keeps his mouth shut. And right now, with the ease of worldwide communication, too much useless and senseless talking is indeed a problem. 

However, it is an important, though difficult lesson for us to learn. Sometimes it’s just best to shut up! And finally: ‘Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me … Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful … that’s what matters to me.’ 

Yes friends, as true believers, material wealth, in and of itself, should not matter that much to us, but what it enables us to do for others is important. And it’s so good to go to bed at night knowing that you have helped someone in need. 

There’s no better feeling in the universe than giving of oneself, one’s treasures and talents and time to others! That’s why our Lord and Saviour, our Leader, Jesus Christ warned us about giving in our Bit. 

‘Give, and it shall be given unto you: good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom (pocket). For with the same measure that ye mete (use) withal it shall be measured to you again.’ 

Yeh mih breddren, the manner in which we give, the measure we use to give, that’s the same measure and manner that will be used to give back to us. So if we give with a generous, positive heart, then others will give back to us with a generous, positive heart. 

However, if we behave like Scrooge and give grudgingly, that’s exactly how we will be treated. It’s all about reaping what you sow my brethren. In God’s economy, you don’t reap more than you sow, unless it’s with true generosity. 

Notice Cousin Sol’s words from Proverbs. ‘He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the Lord; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.’ (Prov.19:17) 

Unfortunately though my people, in this modern society the emphasis is on getting, rather than giving. We all want to know what we can get, instead of what we can give. No wonder that greed and fraud and hoarding are so rampant in our society, which leads to a lot of poverty, homelessness and poor economic conditions. 

And nowadays, we’re always searching for something of good value, hoping to pay little or nothing for it. But friends, that’s a fool’s wisdom! As Confucius is reputed to have said: ‘Good thing no cheap, and cheap thing no good!’ (smile) 

So in general, the value of what you receive, will equal the amount you pay for it. So please, let’s stop thinking about always getting nuh, and concentrate on giving instead. That’s the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!

…to give…to give….and yet to give again…that should be the Christian’s mantra…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 August 2017 Romans 12:2.

Romans 12:2.   And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Oh friends, the week finally finish! Glory to God! And for us Canadians, after the Caribana weekend, it was indeed a short week. So now we have a li’l time to rest and recuperate from all that exhilarating action. (smile) 

But for some really exuberant folks, the weekend will always be the time to totally celebrate the couple days off from work. Consequently they are now excitedly shouting: ‘TGIF! TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! The Lord give us two days to party, so leh we party hearty nuh! 

We can’t afford to waste the li’l time we have for weself in foolish thinking about work and all the other nonsense. Just let it all hang out, free up yuhself and doh worry about nothing till Monday! That’s why we have the weekend! Thank God for Fridays and the weekend yes!’ 

And I dare say that many of us believers would like to let it all hang out on the weekend, (smile) but we know that is not the Christian way; that is the way of the world. Now that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy the weekend, but just that we need to put some limits on the ‘carefreeness.’ 

We definitely don’t want to be dissolute and licentious and give Lucifer any opening whatsoever to come against us. We need to think more like our Friday Chant says: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yeh mih breddren, that’s the Christian way; we enjoy the time off, get some rest, relaxation and fellowship, so that we can handle the upcoming week with new energy and enthusiasm. 

If we don’t apply some limits to our life with some resuscitation along the way, we’ll just keep going downhill until we burn out completely, and worst of all, won’t be able to do a good job on Christ’s behalf, which is our major calling. 

So though we may feel to let it all hang out on the weekend, let’s hang in there, persevere with some circumspection, remembering that we are disciples of Christ, ambassadors for His kingdom and we can’t afford to behave like the world does. 

That’s why Bruh Paul was so emphatic to the church at Rome as our Bit declares: ‘And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.’ 

That’s only basic common sense friends, for the world does not recognize the things of God nor His kingdom. So if we want to be true followers of Christ we need to abstain from a lot of things which the world thinks is right, but which our heavenly Father totally abhors and detests. 

And the scholars offer this explanation. ’12:2. Be not conformed  (lit. “stop conforming yourselves”): They are to resist being poured into the mould of the present thinking, value systems, and conduct of this world. This term is used only here and in 1 Peter 1:14.’ 

And since most of us won’t go and read that verse, I will spoon-feed us. (smile) Peter in his call to Christian dedication, says: ‘As obedient children, not fashioning (conforming) yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance.’ Meaning we should not go back to being the old kind of persons we were before we found Christ and put on the ‘new man.’ 

Now let’s look at a couple of scriptures which also admonish us to stay away from the evil, ungodly world. Listen to James: ‘Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of  (with) the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will (wants to) be a friend of the world is (makes himself) the enemy of God.’ (James 4:4) 

It’s that simple friends. As Jesus said: ‘Ye cannot serve God and mammon (the world, material possessions).’ (Mat. 6:24) So you obviously can’t serve the One True God and also worship, or idolize, or run behind the material possessions of the world. 

And we’ll conclude with some of the most authoritative words on the subject from 1 John. ‘LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him. 

For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever.’(1 John 4:15-17) 

Oh my fellow believers, it couldn’t be put any simpler and plainer than that. As Christians we ought to LOVE God and do His will first and foremost. 

Remember Jesus’ words to the hypocrite Pharisee who asked Him. ‘Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus saith 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). 

So friends, let’s go and do just that nuh, for it is the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!

…seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness…that’s the Christian’s mandate…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 November 2016 2 Timothy 3:17.

2 Timothy 3:17.    That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished (equipped) unto all good works.

Ah friends, that wonderful day called Sunday, the Lord’s Sabbath, has rolled around once more! It’s a day of rest and relaxation, but more importantly one also of worship and fellowship amongst Christians. 

That means, if we are able, we ought to get together with other believers in Jesus Christ to sing and offer praise and thanksgiving for His goodness to us, to listen to His word, as well as receive encouragement and strength to face the upcoming week. 

Now let’s begin with a sacrifice of praise, the fruit of our lips, by singing the inspirational hymn, ‘The Church is One Foundation.’ With sincere enthusiasm and passion friends: ‘The church’s one foundation is Jesus Christ, her Lord; she is his new creation by water and the Word. From heaven he came and sought her to be his holy bride; with his own blood he bought her, and for her life he died. 

Elect from every nation, yet one o’er all the earth; her charter of salvation: one Lord, one faith, one birth. One holy name she blesses, partakes one holy food, and to one hope she presses, with every grace endued. Though with a scornful wonder the world sees her oppressed, by schisms rent asunder, by heresies distressed, yet saints their watch are keeping; their cry goes up: “How long?” and soon the night of weeping shall be the morn of song. 

Mid toil and tribulation, and tumult of her war, she waits the consummation of peace forevermore, till with the vision glorious her longing eyes are blest, and the great church victorious shall be the church at rest. Yet she on earth hath union with God the Three in One, and mystic sweet communion with those whose rest is won: O happy ones and holy! Lord, give us grace that we like them, the meek and lowly, may live eternally.’  

Glory to God my people for such a wonderful worship song, written way back at the end of the 19th century by the British pastor Samuel J. Stone! And over a century later, it’s still a worship favourite. I wonder if the songs we’ve recently penned will be sung so victoriously a century from now eh? Who knows? That’s even if the world is still around the way we know it. 

But regardless of what exists then, right now we have to go back to our Bit of a few days ago. I fully intended to continue it on Friday, but that was Remembrance Day, and the other Bit about a man laying down his life for his friend, just fit better. Then yesterday, the scripture about the true light, also seemed to be a better fit, per the direction in which I was being led. (smile) 

So let’s refresh our memories a tad with the verse before our Bit. ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.’ (2 Tim.3:16) And we said that the Bible was God’s guidebook to us for earthly righteous living, and though it was physically written by men, it was authored by God, through His divine inspiration. 

And our Bit tells us of the very important reason why the Lord authored it. ‘That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished (equipped) unto all good works.’ And the scholars told us that ‘God’s inspired Word, properly used and applied provides all we need for life and ministry.’ 

Glory Hallelujah my people! We don’t need anything else to live this life proficiently, capably, righteously than God’s Book of Answers! 

Now let’s check out some scriptures on the subject. Listen to Bruh Paul admonish Timothy in his earlier letter. After talking about the LOVE of money being the root of all kinds of evil, and how some have ruined themselves through covetousness, Bruh Paul tells him. 

‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. Fight the Good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art called, and hast professed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.’ (1 Tim.6:11-12)  

Oh friends, all of that also applies to us today, if we want to be considered a man or woman of God! 

And the scholars offer these interesting explanations. ‘6:11. Flee these things means shun a LOVE for money (v.10) and the striving for material wealth (v.9) with all its resulting woes. Follow after means pursue. Righteousness is practical correctness, conforming to God’s will in one’s thinking and acting. 

Godliness is proper reverence for, and obedience to, God. Faith is a trust in God that grows stronger. LOVE is a maturing affection for God and man. Patience is perseverance or steadfastness in life and service. Meekness is gentleness.’ 

There we have it my brethren; a chart against which we can measure our progress and success in being a true man, or woman of God. 

And the scholars continue: ‘6:12. The good fight concerns the daily struggle with sin in the Christian life, and the hardships and adversities in the ministry. A genuine believer demonstrates the reality of his faith by being engaged in this warfare. Lay hold on eternal life does not negate the fact that a believer now possesses spiritual life (John 3:36); rather, it speaks of fully realizing or appropriating salvation as the believer matures.’ 

Yes friends, those few words do say a lot about our Christian faith, and I think it’s a good time for us to take stock of our personal faith, or maturity, whether we’re making any progress or not. So let’s take a few moments sometime today, find a quiet spot and see how we measure up against those standards of righteousness nuh.  

Let’s see if we are truly fighting the good fight, really involved in the spiritual warfare; see how we doing with shunning the LOVE of money and the material things of the world. Let’s check to see if our faith is as strong as it ought to be, if we’re persevering and steadfast and gentle…and all the other righteous attitudes and capabilities we need to live a Christ-like life, for that’s supposed to be our earthly goal. 

And as always, wherever we find ourselves lacking, let’s turn to our heavenly Father and confidently ask for His always available help. Much LOVE!

…a Christian’s life is not an easy go…but the adventure involved is worth it…and the rewards at the end are truly phenomenal…

 

 

 

 

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