Today’s Scrip-Bit   12 June 2022 Matthew 25:2.

Matthew 25:2.      And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.

Awright friends, that’s two days straight that the weather has stayed bright and sunshiny right through! Glory be! Don’t know what this Sunday will bring though, because like rain fell last night and it’s wet and cloudy outside, though the sun is putting up a valiant effort to ascertain itself. (smile) That small detail however, will not stop us from gathering to worship our wonderful Lord on His day, be it physically in our sanctuaries or by technological means. (smile) And today, Trinity Sunday, when we celebrate our Three in One Godhead, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we’ll open our praise and worship session with an uplifting, scintillating old traditional gospel spiritual titled ‘Give Me Oil in My Lamp.’ 

And we know that’s a rollicking ole song, so let’s lift our sweet voices in sacrificial praise in a rocking West Indian riddim version. Altogether now: ‘Give me oil in my lamp, keep me burning. Give me oil in my lamp, I pray. Give me oil in my lamp, keep me burning. Keep me burning till the break of day. (Refrain: Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King of kings! Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King!) Give me LOVE in my heart, keep me sharing. Give me LOVE in my heart, I pray. Give me LOVE in my heart, keep me sharing. Keep me sharing till the break of day. (Refrain) 

Give me joy in my heart, keep me singing. Give me joy in my heart, I pray. Give me joy in my heart, keep me singing. Keep me singing till the break of day. (Refrain) Give me faith in my heart, keep me praying. Give me faith in my heart, I pray. Give me faith in my heart, keep me praying. Keep me praying till the break of day. (Refrain: Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King of kings! Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King!) 

Jolly good show mih people! We rocked…and heaven rocked along with us! That’s the beautiful thing about heaven, they LOVE their music up there too, since a lot of singing and praising of God also goes on up in that wonderful realm. But on a more serious note, it’s claimed that the song we just sang was based on Jesus’ parable of the ten virgins, found in Matthew 25:1-13. Jesus likened the kingdom of God to ‘ten virgins who took their lamps and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them. But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.’ (Matt. 25:1-4) 

But as always happens the bridegroom was late, and they all slept. However, when he finally arrived at midnight and they all went out to meet him, the lamps of those who had brought no oil went out, and in desperation they begged for oil from the wise ones who had brought some extra oil just in case the bridegroom was late. But those wise ones refused, figuring that there wouldn’t be enough oil for all of them. So, the foolish ones had to go out and buy oil, but by the time they returned the bridegroom had locked his doors, the celebrations had begun, and those five foolish ones were left out of the good times. 

The bridegroom obviously refers to Christ as the ‘Bride of the Church,’ and the five wise or prepared virgins represent the saved of the Great Tribulation. The scholars tell us that ‘The lamps seem to refer to their lives which are either prepared or unprepared. The oil refers to that which prepares them to give forth light and may properly be illustrative of the regeneration of the Holy Spirit.’  

One commentator says for believers the song conjures up ‘an interpretation that signifies a thirst for spiritual food—spiritual food to get one through the darkest of times in hopes of a brighter day, a clearer vision of one’s path or until one gains their salvation.’ That seems to hold true, as this other commentator declares: ‘In the song someone is asking God for the “oil” of the Holy Spirit to light up their lamp – or their life – and keep them “burning”.  I think they want to be on fire for their Lord!….. Oil is symbolic in Scripture of the Holy Spirit. (Is. 61:1)’ 

That’s when Isaiah introduces Christ with his Good tidings of salvation to Zion. And he prophesies: ‘The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek (poor); he hath sent me to bind up (heal) the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound.’ (Is. 61:1) And what did they anoint with in those olden times? Oil of course! 

As Bruh David says in Psalm 133 – The joy of brotherhood. ‘Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity. It is like the precious ointment (oil) upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts (edge) of his garments.’ (Ps. 133:1-2) So it’s very logical to believe that the author of the song was indeed invoking the Holy Spirit for assistance in problematic times or simply in daily life. 

And if you still don’t believe me, let’s see what constitutes the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Bruh Paul wrote it thus to the Galatians. ‘But the fruit of the spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering (patience), gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.’ (Gal. 5:22-23) 

And aren’t those the very things the singer is asking for: the oil of faithfulness to keep him burning bright for Christ; LOVE in his heart to keep him sharing; joy in his heart to keep him singing till the break of day; and faith in his heart to keep him praying, also to the break of day, or continually? 

So, my fellow saints, let’s hope that as we sang those telling words, our hearts also invoked the Holy Spirit to refill, to regenerate us with its fruit, that we too can go on burning forever for Jesus, as He desires us to do! And it’s also imperative that we remember these telling words of Jesus to John in Revelation. ‘Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.’ (Rev. 16:15) Much LOVE!

…be prepared…be ready…should be the believer’s motto… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8​     

Today’s Scrip-Bit   4 April 2022 Galatians 5:25.

Galatians 5:25.      If we live in the Spirit, let us walk in the Spirit.

​Epilogue! Please excuse the lateness of the Bit, but after I began it, some unexpected personal problems developed, and like problems do, they took longer to fix than I desired. But I think it’s a good Bit, so I wish you enlightened reading. (smile)  

It’s time friends, on this sunny Monday morning, for us to get back into the everyday working world and keep on living for Jesus! After the resurgence of faith and confidence we’ve received yesterday from our session(s) of praise and worship, this opening day of Monday should be a cakewalk for us. (smile) And why not eh, if we’ve been refilled with the power and glory of the Holy Spirit, which guides believers to do mighty, marvellous and miraculous things, all in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ? 

As Bruh Paul said so confidently to Timothy: ‘For God hath not given us a spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound (disciplined) mind.’ (2 Tim. 1:7) So it’s not like we are going out to fight our battles all alone, but with the mightiest power in the universe standing right by our side. And also with the most powerful and protective armour in the universe: the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the sandals of the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, the sword of the Spirit, and an amazing power of prayer and supplication to back it all up! 

Wow! What well-dressed, protected and well-led soldiers we are! That means there is no need to fear or be anxious when we’re walking in the omnipotence of our resurrected Saviour. Instead, we should be all ready and set, just rearing to get out there and fight a mighty battle, even to the death for our wonderful Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ! 

It’s time to let the fruit of the Spirit blossom in our souls and lives, just like the bright new spring blossoms that will soon be appearing on the trees. The fruit of our Spirit has been lying dormant for the winter season, so now it’s time to let it blossom forth with new life: that’s new joy, new LOVE, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faithfulness (dependability), meekness and temperance (self-control). 

A new season ought to bring forth new things in a believer’s life. We hear it in these fateful words of Bruh Paul to the Galatians, and consequently to us: ‘And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections (it’s passions) and lust. If we live in the Spirit, let us walk in the Spirit. Let us not be desirous of vain glory (conceited), provoking one another, envying one another.’ (Gal. 5:24-26) 

Now, for some interesting explanations from the scholars re those verses. ‘5:24. At conversion every believer crucified the flesh, that is, in repentance he turned from and renounced his life of sin and all its wicked passions. This verse then implies that the virtues of verses 22-23, rather than the vices of 19-21, should characterize them that are Christ’s.’ Per ‘5:25. This verse means. “Since we live by the Spirit, let us also follow the Spirit.” That is, since the Spirit gave us new life at conversion, we then should try and stay in step with His leading and promptings throughout life.’ 

And as true believers, we all know that our goal is to follow the Holy Spirit as best we can, because He is our Guide, our Lead-Hand, our Comforter, our purveyor of truth, doing the work that Jesus desires of Him. Bruh Paul spelled it out  in his missive to the church at Rome, re Life in the Spirit. ‘There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. 

For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for (on account of) sin in the flesh: That the righteousness (righteous requirement) of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind (set their minds on) the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.’ (Rom. 8:1-8) 

Bless the Lord, oh my soul! What marvellous and encouraging sentiments my fellow saints in Christ! As a believer we are not condemned, and though, as the scholars tell us: ‘There is nothing inherently wrong with the law, the presence of sin renders the believer powerless to do what the law demands.’ Simply stated, without the Holy Spirit, we could not live a righteous life. Because without Him, we are carnally minded, that is, we have our lives dominated by our basic sin nature. But when we walk in the Spirit, or are spiritually minded, having the Spirit of Christ control our lives, then we are enabled to live righteously! 

And since sin and God do not agree, are on opposite ends of the continuum, it naturally means if we live for the things of the flesh, then we can’t live for or please God. And that’s certainly not the wisdom we ought to entertain. So, let’s hope that all we’ve said today, will sink into our hearts and souls and help us to walk as we ought to…that’s in the Holy Spirit of Christ! 

Now, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, let’s go to the One who sits on the throne of grace, and repledge our allegiance, while asking for His awesome help. As one sincere but confident voice: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

And, in response to all those words, we now must go out and sincerely action them, if we desire a positive answer from the throne room of grace. Much LOVE!

…the law of man says yes…the Spirit says no…the law of man says no…the Spirit says yes…it is indeed a situation of enmity… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8      

Today’s Scrip-Bit   3 March 2022 Matthew 11:28.

Matthew 11:28.     Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 

And a good morning to all you my wonderful Scrip-Bit friends and family out there in the many parts of this crazy and turbulent world! I do hope that your day is going well, that you are filled with the joy, peace and LOVE of Christ Jesus, for that is the ultimate way to live. But I know that’s not always easy because of our constantly changing circumstances, which tend to confuse and muddy the waters of this earthly life. (smile) However, if we want to stay sane and unruffled in the midst of the unprecedented confusion that’s going on around us, we have to get as close to Jesus as possible, and more importantly, stay as close to Him as possible, like white on rice. (smile) 

Why is that you ask? Because it’s only when we are closely aligned with Him that we can successfully handle the trials and tribulations that surround us. Nothing, or no one else but Jesus can give us the confidence and the faithful promises of always walking beside us, of never leaving nor forsaking us, of their indwelling Holy Spirit leading and guiding and comforting us through all the hardships of our earthly journey. 

Jesus Christ is the ONLY ONE who sacrificed His sinless life on the cross to pay for our sins, and who rose again from the grave, thus defeating death and its allies, and thereby giving us the magnificent opportunity to be reconciled with God the Father and rise also from the dead and live forever with Him! No one else can lay claim to such a miraculous feat! Now to me, that means Jesus is someone very worthy to be associated with, to live for…and even to die for! 

And living for Christ is not that difficult if we truly consider it. Listen to how He puts it in His Great Invitation to all who would put their sincere trust in Him. ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt. 11:28-30) 

Mama Mia! Can you find a better invitation than that anywhere in this world my brethren? Obviously not! And the good thing about it is that we know Jesus has the parts and the power to keep all the promises He makes! So why do we refuse to accept His marvellous invitation eh? Especially when we don’t have any better to turn to. Would you consider what Satan offers, better than Christ’s? Not on your life! Because all Satan has to offer is a bunch of lies, deceit, and fraud, with worldly stuff that rots and grows old. 

Listen again, to how Jesus makes His case for hanging out with Him. ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt. 6:19-21) Yes friends, the treasures of this world are not worth losing our souls over, for they eventually rot and turn to dust, even when thieves steal them. (smile) 

Furthermore, as Bruh Paul said to Timothy: ‘For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.’ (1 Tim. 6:7) Now that’s the gospel truth! We came with nothing and will leave with nothing!  Even if they embalm you and put all your worldly wealth in a tomb like the Egyptian Pharaohs did, your spirit will float away to the next life and leave it all behind. So what’s the point of running down earthly wealth. 

And the scholars provide a rather interesting explanation of that verse. They say: ‘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.’ 

Now what are those things you ask? Hear Bruh Paul spell them out. ‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things (the LOVE of money, the root of all kinds of evil, the striving for material wealth and the resultant woes they bring); and follow after (pursue) righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness.’ (1 Tim. 6:11) And those are the things which will cause us to store up treasures in heaven, as well as live a good and godly life down here on earth. 

And the scholars explain those things as follows: ‘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.’ And that’s the way we live for Jesus, in simple, practical and understandable terms! 

Now tell me, is living for Satan in hate, sin, anger, evil, fraud, lies and deceit better than living for Jesus? No way! Especially when Jesus can also give you the worldly wealth without you having to sell your soul, like Satan requires. And whatever Jesus gives you will not diminish or disappear like whatever comes from his Satanic majesty! 

And furthermore, does the evil enemy bestow on you any of these things we call our Thursday Blessings? That’s blessings we don’t deserve, but which Jesus oh so generously bestows on us so we can do His earthly work. Absolutely not! Now let’s declare them in strong voice so that they can take hold in our souls, bodies and spirits, and thus be manifested in our daily lives. 

‘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 every day! Amen!’ 

And having said that, it’s now time for us to go out and let those blessings bear good fruit…some sixty, some a hundred-fold. Much LOVE!

…living for Jesus…is the only wise way to live life… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8         

Today’s Scrip-Bit   10 November 2021 Matthew 6:21.

Matthew 6:21.     For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

And then it was Wednesday…and we have our second wind…we pushing on relentlessly in the name and the power of Jesus, knowing that Friday and the weekend are just around the corner, and we’ll soon have another opportunity to gather, worship and praise our great and wonderful God, while He refreshes us for another fateful week in the trenches of life! 

Brother! Is that a great sentence or what? Reminds me of some of the convoluted ones Bruh Paul writes. So I’m not in such bad company then. (smile) But seriously though, Wednesday, the mid-week workday, is one where we should take a moment to take stock of how our week is going and if we need to make any changes or even ramp up our faith. It’s a suitable time to consider if we are actually doing what we planned, or still just talking the talk, without any, or enough of the walk that’s necessary. 

Remember, we are merely human beings with all kinds of frailties and weaknesses and we can easily get sidetracked by the enemy and the ungodly world. That’s why we need to keep a steady check on how we are progressing, if we are truly storing up heavenly treasures though living this earthly life. Jesus said it quite plainly, as He is wont to do. ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up treasures for yourselves in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt. 6:19-21) 

And that’s the gospel truth friends! Wherever our treasure is hidden or laid up, there also will be our heart, because our treasure is ever so important to us. That’s why so many of us think of the banks so often. (smile) And why not eh, if all our money is in there, hopefully readily available to us when we need or want it. 

Now let’s check the explanation the scholars offer of those verses. ‘6:19-21. The attention of the believer is directed toward treasures in heaven. The term ‘treasures’ implies the accumulation of things. The two kinds of treasures are conditioned by their place (either on earth or in heaven). The concept of laying up treasure in heaven is not pictured as one of meritorious benefits but rather of rewards for faithful service, as is illustrated elsewhere in the teaching of Jesus.’ 

And truly, earthly treasures are not bad in and of themselves, it is when we concentrate all our efforts on accumulating them and don’t have time for God in the unwise pursuit of what Cousin Sol calls ‘vanity’ or futile stuff. Furthermore, if we focus on earthly wealth, we stand a good chance of losing it to moth, rust and thieves. And yet furthermore, (smile) when your earthly days are over, you can’t take any of it with you. As Bruh Paul wrote to Timothy: ‘For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment (clothes) let us therewith be content.’ (1 Tim. 6:7-8) 

The scholars explain. ‘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 as per ‘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.’ 

And my fellow saints, I would certainly be amiss if I did not point out the important things mentioned in verse 11. (smile) Bruh Paul writes: ‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things (the LOVE of money and striving for other earthly wealth – vs. 9-10): and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness.’ (1 Tim. 6:11) 

Oh, and will I ever be my sweet self and throw in verse 12 for good measure, (smile) because it so desperately applies to us in these very dangerous and desperate times. Bruh Paul continues to Timothy: ‘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.’ (1 Tim. 6:12) Now that’s exactly what we need to do in these perilous times my faithful brethren. 

And if you don’t understand it all, let’s allow the scholars to explain. ‘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.’ 

And I so like to spoil us, that I’ll quote John 3:36. (smile) John the Baptist, not John the disciple, is testifying of Jesus: ‘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.’ Yes friends, we have salvation and are going to heaven, through God’s free gift of grace, but in the meanwhile we have to make use of all the opportunities, benefits and blessings that that salvation brings to us here on earth. We have to live out our faith. As Bruh Paul said to the Philippians: ‘…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.’ (Phil. 2:12b) 

And these two paragraphs from an article on the subject by Ed Elliot on the medium.com website explains that verse much better than I can. Ed writes: ‘Working out our salvation is very different from working for our salvation. When Paul tells believers they need to work out their salvation, he is simply explaining that the wonderful gift they freely received from God is inside of them. We bring out those beautiful attributes and character traits by faith. Faith is a rest, but it is faith that works, not us. So working out what is on the inside of us happens by faith. 

This process can be frightening in the beginning as a new believer discovers how to live and walk by faith. Some strong trepidation may be present at first when a person decides to trust God as his or her source and peace. I remember how scary it was for me to stop trusting in my natural abilities and trust in God’s Word. This is what Paul is referring to when he mentions “fear and trembling.” He isn’t talking about being afraid of God. Rather, he is helping the new believer to know that in the beginning, it will seem scary to walk by faith. However, it is the only way to see our inner salvation manifest on the outside through our character.’ 

But to do that successfully my brethren, means we have to spend serious time in the Word and with the Lord, as well as with other believers, encouraging and teaching each other. Now, for those of us who are sincerely trying to do that very thing, let’s go home now declaring (awright!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. 

As one strong voice: ‘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 don’t forget that if we endure to the very end that the future will indeed be even more glorious that we ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…why seek finite earthly treasures…when heavenly ones last till infinity…

P.S. Please excuse the lateness of the Bit, but I had some important errands to run and as always, the best laid plans of mice and men do tend to go astray. (smile) Much LOVE!                                                                                                                   

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8           

Today’s Scrip-Bit   23 October 2021 Mark 5:36.

Mark 5:36.     Be not afraid, only believe.

Saturday, oh Saturday, the day of leisure…and hopefully pleasure! Yes friends, it’s the big day called Saturday, where we party and play and do things we can’t do on workdays, including housework, laundry and grocery shopping. (smile) Yeh, some of us work harder on a Saturday than we do all week at our workplaces. But that’s all a part of our wonderful modern life. On Saturdays, we also turn to the quotes our friend Anselm sent us during the past week and see if we can make sense of them. So let’s get with that task nuh. 

And the first quote tells us: ‘Everyone visualizes whether he knows it or not. Visualizing is the great secret of success.’ And we all do visualize stuff, see it in our mind’s eye, see it the way we would like it to look in reality. But I don’t know if I will call it the secret of success, though it is an important aspect of being successful, because we can’t bring something to pass successfully unless we have some idea of how the project will look and operate. And that falls right into the lap of this next quote, which says: ‘To accomplish great things we must not only act but also dream, not only plan but also believe.’ 

That’s the gospel truth! Dreaming is a part of visualizing, of looking forward to what can be, or what you’d like to see come to pass or accomplish. And after you’ve dreamt about it, looked at it from all different angles, then you formulate a plan to make it a reality. But in all those stages, one thing is absolutely necessary for success, that’s belief that the project will be successful. You must believe it deep down in your heart and soul, else you will not put the necessary energy and effort, the plenty elbow crease, and constant starting over that some projects need to bring them to fruition. 

Belief, strong belief is vital in all we do! The problem though is often the source of our belief, whether it can actually do what it promises, or we believe it can. Note what Jesus said to Jairus, one of the rulers of the synagogue, who came and pleaded for Him to come and heal his sick twelve-year-old daughter. On the way there, Jesus healed the woman with the blood issue who came through the throng and touched his clothing. (Mark 5:21-34) But while He was talking to the woman, Jairus’ people came and said that his daughter had died. However, as soon as Jesus heard it, He said to Jairus: ‘Be not afraid, only believe.’ (Mark 5:37) 

Now what did Jesus mean there eh? Basically, that Jairus was to believe that Jesus would and could do what He had promised, that is heal his daughter. And so it is with us, who claim to believe in Jesus. We must believe in the promises He’s made to give us a good future and a hope, of forgiveness of sins, leading to salvation and life eternal with Him in heaven. 

The problem with belief is that it must be based on something solid, like tying a rope to big, sturdy rock, or a ship to a big anchor. And the sturdiest, safest and surest thing in this world is Jesus! He’s shown how strong, sturdy and reliable He is by His death on the cross, His resurrection and ascension back to heaven, and His sending of the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us in His place. Wow! You couldn’t get any more reliable than that. 

Meanwhile, the next quote says: ‘Most people are thinking about what they don’t want, and they’re wondering why it shows up over and over again.’ And is that ever so true, for what we focus on is what we usually get. Cousin Sol said it long ago in Proverbs. ‘As a man thinks, so is he.’ (Prov, 23:7) That’s why, if we don’t want to reap negativity, then we need to stop concentrating on the negative aspects of life and instead concentrate on the positive ones, so that we can reap positive actions or results. 

And that segues right into the following quote. ‘Be thankful for what you have, you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never ever have enough.’ Words of heavenly wisdom my brethren! Especially in this society of plenty, where we all have so much stuff, stuff that we don’t use or can’t find, yet we still desire more. It’s a symptom of what we just spoke about; what you concentrate on is what will happen. If you keep thinking about more earthly stuff, then you will go out seeking it. With that kind of mindset you will never be satisfied with or appreciate what you already have. 

That recalls Jesus words from the Sermon on the Mount: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) Yes friends, the wise action is to seek God first; above everything else, and He will provide all that you need. Remember Bruh Paul’s words to the Philippians? ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.’ (Phil. 4:19) And He is a God who faithfully keeps His promises, as we can see from this last quote: ‘Stop waiting for somebody to elevate your game. You are already equipped with everything you need to manifest your own greatness.’ 

And if you are a believer in Christ Jesus, then that’s the indisputable truth! And you ask in a perplexed manner, what am I talking about? I’m talking about the fruit of the Holy Spirit my people; that’s LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness) meekness, temperance (self-control). (Gal. 5:22-23) Yes, it was all deposited in us when we received Christ, now it’s just left for us to water, prune and nourish those seeds so that they can grow and bear bountiful fruit, so that others can see and also believe. 

As Bruh Paul advises us, ‘work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.’ And it’s not to work for salvation, because you can’t do that, since it’s a free gift of grace from God. (Eph. 2:8) The scholars explain it thus: ‘2:12. Work out your own salvation does not mean that you should work for salvation in order to obtain it. The Greek phrase “work out” denotes the expression, manifestation, or actualization of something one already possesses. The Philippians are to “work out” the salvation God has already wrought in them (vs. 13), carrying it to its logical conclusion. 

God has granted them salvation not just for their own profit, but for the good of others as well. If they work out and manifest the new life divinely worked in them, they will live lives worthy of the gospel (1:27), in harmony with each other (vs. 2), seeking the progress of the gospel. They will also regard one another as more important than themselves (vs.3), be concerned with the needs of their fellows (vs. 4),and make the appropriate sacrifices in obedience to God, as did Jesus, In doing all this they will work out or express the new life they have through Christ.’ 

And it’s the same thing we need to do my fellow saints in Christ, even more so in these desperate and dangerous times we are now living in. If we are to be true believers, then we need to raise the level of our faith and faithful action right now, obviously with God’s help! Much LOVE!

…if you don’t believe in Jesus…the King of Kings…Lord of Lords…the Prince of Peace… and the Son of Jehovah God…in whom then will you believe eh…                                                                                                      

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8                        

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 June 2021 Matthew 15:11.

Matthew 15:11.     Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man, but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.

And then it was Saturday, our lazy, couch surfing day! And the nature of today is even more conducive to lazing around. Meaning that it’s a wet and windy Saturday morning. Oh yes, we had rain from yesterday afternoon straight through to the early hours of this morning. As the old people would warn; be careful what you wish for eh, because you might just get it. 

But thankfully, though we wished for rain, it was not the shower bound type we received, but just a constant drizzle. That meant the ground had time to absorb it and thus lessen the possibilities of flooding. Our God is so good and understanding! Give Him some thanks and praise nuh people! 

Now, let’s turn to our Saturday business, checking out the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first one says: ‘It’s sad when someone you know becomes someone you knew.’ Now is that ever so true! A lot of times we are heart broken when our relationships end, especially when it was someone whom we thought we’d do a lifetime with and then they end rather nastily too. 

But that’s life friends. We have people in our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. But most of them are either for a reason or a season, very few are there for a lifetime. And until we learn that and move on, broken relationships will always cause us more heartache than necessary. 

And that brings us to the second quote which follows from the first. ‘Growth is painful. Change is painful. But nothing is as painful as staying stuck somewhere you don’t belong.’ Yes friends, growth and change are painful, but ofttimes that’s what a broken relationship portends; it’s time for us to move on up. And those people in our lives are not the ones to move on up with us, so they have to go. As they say, the Lord closes one door, then opens another that has different people in it, with a brighter future. 

And though it’s always hard to give up the old stuff, if you stay with it, you will eventually become more frustrated and disgusted with your old situation, than if you had moved on to the new one. Sooner or later, you will feel as though you are spinning your wheels in mud, or stuck in a rocking chair, rocking vigorously but not going anywhere. Yes, change isn’t always pleasant, but sometimes it’s necessary to get our adrenaline flowing. 

Then we come to this quote. ‘Life is under no obligation to give us what we expect.’ And is that ever true! Life owes us nothing my people! In fact, it’s we who owe life. We owe it the duty of being responsible and making a positive and productive difference in it. We are not put here just to enjoy the perks of life, but to add to them. 

Entitlement is not our God-given due, as so many of us seem to think. So, unless we are making a positive difference in our everyday walk, we are shortchanging life. And that’s even more important for believers in Christ Jesus, because His desire is for us to make disciples of those we meet by telling them about the good news of His gospel and more importantly, living the way His gospel dictates. For people respond more to examples than words. 

And all of that leads us to this next quote. ‘Sometimes you’ve got to be able to listen to yourself and be okay with no one else understanding.’ Yes my brethren, though others can and will give us advice, both good and bad, in the long run, we are the ones who must make the final decision. And that’s not always easy, especially in our current mish-mash, topsy-turvy world. But it is important that we are strong enough to live with whatever decisions we make, regardless of whether others understand or appreciate them. For, in the long run, we are the ones who have to live with the decisions we make, not the other people. 

And when you are a child of the Most High God, you are enabled by His Holy Spirit to make right decisions, and to stand strong with them. No need to be wishy washy, and wavering, or fence-sitting to see what eventually happens. Yes, precious people, being able to make timely, positive decisions is definitely one of the benefits of being a child of Jehovah God! Glory be! 

That brings us to our last quote. ‘Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live.’ Ah my brethren, that’s true in spades! We must all face the death of our mortal bodies at some time or the other, we cannot do anything about that, but we certainly can stop the good aspects of our lives from dying while our bodies are still alive. And we’re talking about our humanity, the thing that makes, or is supposed to make us different from the wild animals; compassion and caring for each other. 

Hn! But today, unfortunately we behave more like the wild animals than the wild animals, the inhumane and uncaring way we treat our fellow man. Most of us are born with good ideals and inclinations, despite our basic sinful nature, but the sad part happens when we refute those good inclinations and accept the bad ones that so much of our world tend to recognize as more beneficial. We are talking about things like greed, envy, taking advantage of others, and the complete renunciation of the fruit of the Spirit. That’s ‘LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), meekness, temperance (self-control).’ 

Oh my people, when any of those things die in us, while our bodies are still alive, the loss to ourselves and the world is incalculable. It means our world is about to get darker, the enemy is winning the battle, as we become less tolerant and caring, but more negative and adversarial. That’s not the kind of world we want to live in, or leave for our children to experience. And remember what Jesus said about our internal traits. ‘Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man, but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.’ (Matt. 15:11) 

And that’s the gospel truth friends! What we put into our mouths doesn’t defile us, but what comes out of our mouths defiles us. That’s because the things that come out of our mouths come from our hearts, while what goes in comes out as bodily refuse. As Jesus explains: ‘For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things that defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defile not a man.’ (Matt. 15:19-20) 

So whenever the goodness of God dies in us friends, it is indeed a sad day; a day to mourn for the well-being of our world. And right now, so much of the goodness of God has died in so many of us, that it’s no wonder our world is going through a rather dark and grievous time. And for it to turn around, it means that we, the disciples of Christ must do a better job than we’re currently doing. So let’s get to it nuh. Much LOVE!

…he who has ears to hear…let him hear…                                                                            

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8              

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 August 2020 Galatians 5:22-23.

Galatians 5:22-23.     ​But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering (patience), gentleness (kindness), goodness (generosity), faith (faithfulness, dependability), Meekness (courtesy, consideration), temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.
 

Awright, up and at ‘em fellow saints of Christ! Time to get up, go out if necessary and live the gospel; the good news of our Lord and Saviour! Remember some of the last words He spoke to the disciples, and consequently to us, who haven’t seen Him in person, but nonetheless believe? 

‘All power (authority) is given unto me in heaven and in the earth. Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples of) all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt. 28: 18-20) Wow! What a marvellous command; one thoroughly laced with divine assurance! We call it the ‘Great Commission!’ 

And I like how the scholars describe it: ‘28:18-20. Christianity is not represented here as the mere reverential devotion of disappointed men who honour their martyred leader. Here is a far different scene. The triumphant, living Lord sends forth His ambassadors to proclaim His gospel throughout all the world. The Great Commission is not just an order but a pronouncement of victory (mundus regium Christi) by the risen Saviour through His disciples.’ 

Yes friends on the basis of Christ’s death and resurrection, His victory over the evil one, He was given power and authority over both heaven and earth, and it’s on that same power and authority that we, His ambassadors, His disciples, are able to carry our His Great Commission to all the world through His body, the church. Glory be, mih bredrin! 

So our major purpose this Monday morning is to display the wonderful characteristics of Jesus, what we term the fruit of the Spirit, seeds of those awesome characteristics that have been planted within us, and are prosperously growing therein, as we continually water and nurture them. 

And what better time and place to remember those precious characteristics called the fruit of the Spirit than right now. ‘But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering (patience), gentleness (kindness), goodness (generosity), faith (faithfulness, dependability), Meekness (courtesy, consideration), temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.’ (Gal. 5:22-23) No my people, against that marvellous fruit, there can be no law! 

However, as Bruh Paul continues to the Galatians: ‘And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections (its passions) and lusts.’ (Gal. 5:24). That means when we receive Christ, and the Holy Spirit comes to live in us, we become new creatures, giving up our sinful past and evil passions. Which further means: ‘If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.’ (Gal. 5:25) That should be understood. If the Spirit gave us new life when we received Christ, then we ought to continue following His leading and guidance for the rest of our lives if we want the spiritual seeds within us to grow and produce much good fruit, and thus we move from glory to glory in Christ Jesus. 

And we have one last, but oh so important warning from Bruh Paul to the church at Galatia. ‘Let us not be desirous of vain glory (be conceited), provoking one another, envying one another.’ (Gal. 5:26) Now that also applies to us, but unfortunately, both in the church and society at large that is not being practiced. In fact those very emotions of conceitedness, provocation and envy are running rampant throughout our entire society. No wonder the fruit of the Spirit is not as abundant as it ought to be. That’s why as ambassadors and disciples of Jesus we have to get out there and spread the message, make a difference, so that His gospel can reach the entire world as He desires and commissioned us to do. 

And the first thing we ought to do each and every day is pray. So let’s do that nuh, by declaring (awright!) our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. In strong and confident voice, but with humble and contrite hearts. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive, and hopefully haven’t contracted the virus that’s causing havoc around our world. And our anxieties have been recently deepened because several restrictions have been lifted in the lockdown, so more of us are going out to work now without any guarantees of safety. 

Then to complicate matters Father, suddenly, and unexpectedly, just like the virus, worldwide strife and protests have also struck us in this sad time of pandemic, and we don’t have a clue how to handle either situation properly. Mass confusion is currently prevailing in our world, and we desperately need your help to solve both problems, as You are the ONLY One with the power and insight to successfully handle them. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction. 

Please show us how to successfully handle these scourges that are currently plaguing Your beautiful earth. Please help our leaders to wisely quell the strife and protests, thus bringing unity, peaceful consensus and real improvement in the areas that are now sadly lacking. Please help the scientists to also find a positive solution, a sure antidote to the virus as quickly as possible. And for those who have already contracted the virus, or been injured in the strife, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. 

Father, please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

And while we wait for God’s help, let’s walk in the Spirit nuh, so that we can produce much good fruit! Much LOVE!

…let your light so shine before men…that they may see your good works…and glorify your Father in heaven… (Matt. 5:16)  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 July 2020 Romans 12:2.

Romans 12:2.     ​And do not be 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. 
 

Get on up…it’s Monday! Get on up…there’s work to be done! There’s a pandemic to be conquered and strife to be peacefully quelled, so why the lying in bed and being miserable and negative eh? (smile) Ah mih people, we do have those two problems to solve this Monday morning and unless we get up and get a move on, we will never solve them. 

And remember we’ve been placed here at this appointed time for that very purpose. That brings to mind the famous words of Mordecai to his niece Esther, who, for fear of losing her own life, hem and hawed about going to the king and asking for mercy for the Jewish people, when the king’s right hand man, Haman, was plotting genocide against them: ‘…and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?’ (Esth. 4:14b) 

Yes friends, we have been placed in the world for a time such as this! That means the Lord has something important, be it large or small, for each one of us to do in these times of turmoil. So let’s be up and about the Lord’s business nuh. But as we all know, the first item on our agenda should always be communication with Him, that powerful tool we call prayer. 

So let’s boldly but humbly come before the throne of grace and pray that corporate prayer we call our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, thus giving the Lord God a chance to wisely lead and guide us as we set out to do His daily will. All together now in strong voice with sincere hearts. 

‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive, and hopefully haven’t contracted the virus that’s causing havoc around our world. And our anxieties have been recently deepened because several restrictions have been lifted in the lockdown, so more of us are going out to work now without any guarantees of safety. Then to complicate matters Father, suddenly, and unexpectedly, just like the virus, worldwide strife and protests have also struck us in this sad time of pandemic, and we don’t have a clue how to handle either situation properly. 

Mass confusion is currently prevailing in our world, and we desperately need your help to solve both problems, as You are the ONLY One with the power and insight to successfully handle them. Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. 

That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction. Please show us how to successfully handle these scourges that are currently plaguing Your beautiful earth. Please help our leaders to wisely quell the strife and protests, thus bringing unity, peaceful consensus and real improvement in the areas that are now sadly lacking. Please help the scientists to also find a positive solution, a sure antidote to the virus as quickly as possible. 

And for those who have already contracted the virus, or been injured in the strife, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. Father, please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

Now let’s take a moment to sit and wait…to listen for God’s answer to our prayer, to what he wants each of us to do. We know that He always answers prayer, but we won’t hear Him unless we get quiet and wait. And that’s exactly why so many of us claim not to hear from Him. Prayer is supposed to be a two-way conversation…we talk to God, then we patiently wait for His answer… 

Oh my people, my people, I’ve gotten an answer! I don’t know what He’s told you to do, but he’s told me to share, to bring this most important scripture to your attention today! (smile) ‘And do not be 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.’ (Rom. 12:2) 

Mama Mia! What a powerful and mind-bending scripture! (smile) Yes, that’s exactly what the Lord wants us to do, bend our minds away from the ways of the world. And the battle most certainly begins in the mind. That’s why Cousin Sol says that as a man thinketh in his heart (mind), so is he. (Prov. 23:7) 

So whatever is uppermost in our minds is what we’re going to pursue, and in order to pursue God, we need to actively think on the things of God. That’s why Jesus told us so plainly and concernedly: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33)  

And Bruh Paul enlarged on Jesus’ words by purposely telling us: ‘Finally brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest (noble), whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are LOVERLY, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise (anything praiseworthy), think (meditate) on these things.’ (Phil. 4:8) 

So please, let’s stop conforming to the ways of the world nuh, making its values systems, conduct and thinking so important in our lives. And instead do what we’re called to do; the will of God; that’s follow His purpose for our lives by surrendering to His wise guidance and direction, for He’s promised to never forsake us or leave us or lead us astray. And He who promised is faithful! Much LOVE!

…God’s will…bear the fruit of the Spirit…LOVE, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), meekness, temperance (self-control)…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 May 2020 Galatians 5:25.

Galatians 5:25.    ​If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 
 
Well at long last, some sustained heavenly blessings upon our neighbourhood earth! Yes friends, we’re finally getting some rain in my area, after I don’t know how long. And it’s still merely drizzles instead of strong downpours. But I guess the earth and the earth-workers are grateful for every last drop. Not like they could afford to be ungrateful and refuse it anyway. (smile) And this Friday morning indeed seems like it might just be different to many of those of the recent past. Why, you ask? Because some of the work restrictions have been lifted in our Province of Ontario, and some more places will be able to open come Monday. 

So let’s see what the ordinary workingman has to say about it all nuh. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui!’ And there seems to be some enthusiasm in his voice today. ‘Yes thank God that mih place of work opening back up on Monday, though still with some restrictions! Brother! Does it ever feel good to mih soul! Never thought I’d be happy to go to the slave master’s work nuh, but after being home for almost two months, I’d be glad to go out and do anything, just to get mihself active again! And ah know nobody happy like the slave master, because he LOVE the job more than anybody else, and making money is only a plus for him. 

And it won’t be hard for us to do things like physical distancing because we don’t work close together anyway, the machines and them more than a few feet apart. And we wear head and face protective gear anyway. But leh we hope that people take this thing seriously yes, and doh go and behave chupid like they were doing earlier on, because we not out of the woods yet nuh. In fact we’ll never be out of the woods until we at least have a vaccine that can actually stop this virus in its tracks. 

And I’m chuckling here because ah know the wife going to be happy to get me from constantly under her foot, although she not going to have anybody to help her with children, who still don’t have no school. And let’s hope that next week Friday, after a solid week of hard work, I’d still be able to say ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday with a smile oui!’ 

And yes, my fellow believers, it’s good news to a certain extent, although I don’t think the ordinary workingman realizes that Monday is a public holiday; Queen Victoria’s Day, so most likely, him and a lot of others won’t be going back to work until Tuesday. This weekend also usually marks the beginning of cottage country getaways, but it’s going to be different this year as people are advised not go up to their cottages, if at all possible, or just go with immediate family and stay right in their cottages, because we don’t want the country districts to be overflowing with visitors and thus increase the possibility of the virus spreading even further. 

And ah have to laugh yes. Yuh see how one li’l virus, that you can’t even see without a strong microscope, change up we whole way of life in just a few months. So let’s hope that Ontarians behave in a responsible manner this weekend and as more businesses begin to open next week, because the next wave of this thing will be even worse than the first. Now let’s do our part in the prayer department and chant our Friday Chant nuh. 

All together now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. It’s been pretty rough…though not from work, but from all the confusion and havoc that the Covid -19 virus causing. We not accustomed to that Lord, and it really telling on us. But with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat this virus. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the sure and wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the  least amount of loss to life and property as possible. 

And with this lifting of more restrictions by the government, we implore you to touch the hearts of all those who go out into the open spaces, and make them understand that we still need to behave responsibly and take serious precautions so we don’t have a further setback. And please use this situation to also bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, and also introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion because of the way we, your faithful believers, handle the situation. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And the major problem there is if we, Christ’s ambassadors on this earth, are truly doing things, behaving the way that will make the heathen want to come to Him. Yes friends are we walking in LOVE, with the fruit of the Spirit pouring out of us in all unity and worthiness? Are we living like Bruh Paul recommends? ‘I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation (calling) wherewith ye are called. With all lowliness and meekness (gentleness), with long-suffering, forbearing (bearing with) one another in LOVE; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.’ (Eph. 4:1-3) 

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, is that how we’re living? Because if it isn’t, then we we’ll just push people further away from Christ rather than bring them to Him. And these words from Bruh Paul to the Galatians should remind us of our bounden duty. ‘But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections (its passions) and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not be desirous of vain glory (be conceited), provoking one another, envying one another.’ (Gal. 5:22-26) 

Yes friends, only if we truly live by the dictates of the Spirit will we produce righteous fruit that will encourage, and eventually convince the unbeliever that Christ has what he needs to make him whole, to give him a brand new life! So today, let’s examine our lives nuh, and then, with God’s help, make the necessary changes. Much LOVE!

…the righteous…walk not after the flesh…but after the Spirit…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 January 2020 John 14:1.

John 14:1.    ​Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
 
Well it’s Wednesday; the middle of the work week, the hump day, where we feel like we’ve finally gotten hold of, gotten over that invisible hump, where work takes up most of our time. But work certainly takes up most of our time in this life yes! Most of us work five days a week for an average of forty years, then we retire, thankful that there’s no work on the horizon, the early mornings and late nights are finally done! 

But yuh know what? After doing something for forty years it’s hard to get accustomed to not doing anything, to not have to get up and go to work every day, although we complained most days about having to get up and go to work! Hn! And if we just loll about in retirement and don’t keep busy, then our bodies give up and we head back to the dust from which we’ve come, sooner than expected. We’re creatures of habit. That’s the contrariness of the human animal! (smile) 

And I finally finished watching the second half of the movie ‘Gone with the Wind.’ And it is indeed an epic story. But if the truth be told, nothing has really changed in our world since then nuh; that civil  war didn’t solve a whole lot, possibly besides the end of slavery, because there have been several bigger and more brutal wars since then, there’s still too much racism, overt and covert, still too much avarice and greed and jealously and strife, too much poverty and sickness and advantage, too much injustice and discrimination, be it by race, colour, class or creed, despite all the supposed advances we’ve made! 

Yes friends, our world is still a hotbed of dissension and disagreement! And yuh know what? It’s getting worse! Just look around at all the discontent between friends and families, between neighbours and nations…we’ve come closer together in terms of distance and communication, but we’ve gotten further apart in terms of true fellowship. There are more lonely people around now even with the advent of cell phones and social media, because that communication is basically impersonal; half the time you don’t even know who you’re really dealing with. 

Oh my people, the ONLY true solution to what ails our world is JESUS! He is the ONLY ONE who can truly bring us all together and give us the peace, LOVE and joy that we all seem to clamour for, but are far from experiencing! But strangely enough, Jesus is also one of the biggest factors of contention in our world; you either LOVE Him or hate Him with a passion! 

But let me ask you a few questions? Who is the ONLY ONE that came down from heaven, was made man, made in our image and lived amongst us like us eh? JESUS CHRIST! Who is the ONLY ONE who died on a cross to take away our sins, to give us another option besides hellfire and damnation with Satan eh? JESUS CHRIST! Who is the ONLY ONE who died and rose from the grave and ascended back into heaven with the promise to come back for us when we have made disciples of all the nations so that nobody will be lost to Beelzebub eh? JESUS CHRIST! 

Oh precious people, who said these momentous words with this awesome promise? ‘Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my father’s house are many mansions (dwellings): if it were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.’ (John 14:1-3) 

Oh friends, Jesus had no cause to lie. They saw Him do numerous miracles. They saw Him crucified on the cross at Calvary, then rise up again. Yuh think if the early believers didn’t see Christ after He rose from the dead, they would have believed him and done what He asked and waited for Him? No way Jose! 

Hear the scholars: ‘14:1. Let not your heart be troubled refers to Peter, Jesus having just told him of his imminent denial of his Lord (13:38). But the larger reference is to all the apostles, through whom Jesus is going to lay the foundation of the church. His comfort also includes instruction about His departure, the sending of the Holy Spirit, the promise of spiritual power, of answered prayer, and of peace, but especially the promise of His return.’ And a great shout of ‘Praise the Lord!’ echoes far and wide across the land in anticipation of that most wonderful promise! 

Yes friends, Jesus is the ONLY ONE who desires to build a group of people, His church, on the basis of LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), meekness and temperance (self-control). And if you didn’t recognize them, they are the fruit of the Spirit, seeds of which are planted in our own spirit when we do the wise thing and receive Christ as our Lord and Saviour. It’s then left up to us to water and nurture them and let them grow in and through us, by reading His Word and sincerely living it. 

That’s why Jesus said: ‘Wherefore by their fruit ye shall know them,’ speaking of false prophets and evil deceivers. (Matt.7:20) A good tree can’t produce bad fruit, neither can a corrupt tree produce good fruit. And we need to also remember these famous words of Bruh Paul to the Corinthians: ‘And now abideth faith, hope, charity (LOVE), these three; but the greatest of these is charity (LOVE).’ (1 Cor. 13:13). 

Yes brothers and sisters, LOVE is indeed the greatest, because God is LOVE, and LOVE does no harm, but covers a multitude of sins, neither is there any fear in LOVE! And if  God first LOVED us, then we should also LOVE Him, and LOVE one another too: those are His two greatest desires! And now that all of that is indelibly written in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls, let’s go home celebrating our position in Christ by declaring (chuh!) our Wednesday Wail. 

Altogether now, in strong voice and sincere hearts: ‘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 in light of all Jesus has promised, friends, it will certainly be a glorious future indeed! Much LOVE!

…JESUS…the answer to EVERYTHING…

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