Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 September 2019 Isaiah 44:6.

Isaiah 44:6.    Thus saith the Lord the King of Israel, and his redeemer the Lord of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.
 

Ah mih people, I woke up joyfully singing it this morning, even though I did not get much sleep, so I took it as a sign that we should open with some of it. (smile) So please sing with me: ‘Bless the Lord oh my soul, Oh my soul, Worship His holy name. Sing like never before, Oh my soul, I’ll worship Your holy name.’ 

One more time, cause when it’s so nice, you’ve got to sing it twice. (smile) ‘Bless the Lord oh my soul, Oh my soul, Worship His holy name. Sing like never before, Oh my soul, I’ll worship Your holy name.’ And yes friends, that’s exactly what we should all be doing, or have already done, this glorious Wednesday morning that the Lord has so graciously seen fit to allow us to see. 

Bless His holy name my people! Bless and exalt it because He is the ONE and ONLY ONE! He said so Himself in His Word, through His prophet Isaiah, and He does not lie; His Word is truth; the ultimate truth!

Listen to His awesome Word and let your hearts be set free by its amazing truth: ‘Thus saith the Lord the King of Israel, and his redeemer the Lord of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.’ Mamacita! What a powerful, factual and undeniable statement that is my believing brethren! 

And the scholars explain that thus: ‘44:6. In verse 6 the prophet emphasizes the oneness of God by stating that beside me there is no God. Yet at the same time, the prophet distinguishes between the Lord the King of Israel and his redeemer the Lord of hosts. The personal name ‘Yahweh’ is used of both the King and His redeemer, the one referring to God the Father and the other referring to God the Son.’ 

We can see that even way back then the Lord was setting the stage for coming of His most wonderful Son! And believe me, there’s no better stage manager in all the world than the Lord our God. You just have to read the Good Book and see how He set up everything right to the nth degree from creating the world to saving it! 

But getting back to the Lord being the ONE and ONLY GOD, He continues to make His point, reasoning thus: ‘And who, as I, shall call, and shall declare it, (who can proclaim it? Then let him declare it), and set it in order for me, since I appointed the ancient people? and the things that are coming, and shall come, let them show unto them.

Fear ye not, neither be afraid: have not I told thee from that time, and have declared it? Ye are even my witnesses. Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any.’ (Is.44:7-8) 

Oh friends, I don’t know of any other nuh! (smile) They are a lot of pretend ones, but they have no power whatsoever. And how can a man bow down and worship something inanimate that he’s made with his own two hands eh?

And even if you worship the wind, the birds, the sun, the moon, the stars or some other aspect of creation, like you, they were created by the ONE TRUE GOD; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and none of them can do anything on their own, their apparent power is all wrapped up in what the Lord, the King of Israel gave and still gives to them! 

So worshipping any other supposed God is pure folly! And as the Father said it to, and through Isaiah, so did the Son, Jesus Christ, say it to His beloved disciple, John in his vision on the island of Patmos, where he was exiled. ‘I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.’ (Rev.1:8) 

And even around God’s throne everlasting praises are being sung spelling out His might and majesty and holiness. ‘And the four beasts had each of them six wings about them; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest (cease) not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.’ (Rev.4:8) Oh my people, heaven is constantly ringing with the Lord’s praises! 

As John writes: ‘And when those beasts (living creatures) give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever, The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying,

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created (by your will they exist).’ (Rev.4:9-11) 

Can you imagine that scene mih breddren? A rainbow around the throne of heaven, with the Lord sitting there looking as beautiful as ever, and thunder and lightning, and the beasts singing and the elders worshipping…pure merriment mih people!

So if they can sing the Father’s praises so continuously in heaven, why can’t we lesser mortals sing His praises some too down here on earth eh? Why are we so stingy with giving Him His rightfully deserved praise eh? 

Because we are selfish and don’t truly believe that He is who He says He is. But that will only lead to our eventual chagrin my friends. So please, let’s wake up and smell the roses, or the coffee, or whatever will open our eyes, minds and souls to the reality that the Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the ONE and ONLY TRUE GOD in this wonderful universe He created! 

And having settled that, (smile) let’s go home declaring (steups!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. All together now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

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

And if you sincerely believe it, then please stick steadfastly with it, because one day, we too shall be singing and worshipping the Lord in heaven! Much LOVE!

…our human minds are too small…to fully comprehend…the constant joy in heaven…but if we believe the promise…one day we surely will…

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 May 2019 John 14:27.

John 14:27.   Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

 

And the rain fell with a vengeance, for much of the day! And it wasn’t the measly drizzle we’d been getting for the last li’l while, but full blown showers accompanied by booming claps of Thor’s thunder and threatening bolts of fiery lightning! The sun would come out for a li’l while and you’d think, ‘Yes, the rain’s over!’ But that would be a wasted thought, for shortly thereafter the rain would come pouring down again. Chuh! 

And that’s the worst kind of rainfall, because it just leaves you in limbo, never knowing what it’s going to do! But the good thing is that was yesterday, Saturday, today is Sunday, a different day completely, so let’s hope the weather will be different too. (smile) And it looks different, bright, but with some scudding clouds. 

But even if it’s the same, please, don’t let us allow it to stop us from gathering in the Lord’s sanctuary to celebrate His day, the Sabbath, to give Him praise and thanks, to hear His faithful and wonderful Word, and receive His enabling blessings, without which we can’t successfully navigate the storms and trials of this earthly life. And as always, we’ll begin the celebrations with a song of praise and worship to lighten our souls and prepare our hearts to hear His Word. 

And today’s song is a fairly new one, written in the second half of the 20th century, by one Artie Glenn, but was popularized by one Elvis Presley. So let’s get serious, soulful and sincere as we raise up our voices in praise and thanksgiving to heaven, through the words of ‘Crying In The Chapel’ It’s a soulful morning friends, so let’s feel it in our hearts and souls and trill as one harmonious songbird. (smile) 

‘You saw me crying in the chapel, The tears I shed were tears of joy, Now I know the meaning of contentment, And I’m happy with the Lord. Just a plain and simple chapel, Where humble people go to pray. I prayed the Lord that I’ll grow stronger, As I live from day to day. I’ve searched (I’ve searched) and I’ve searched, But I couldn’t find, No way on earth to gain peace of mind. 

But now I’m happy in the chapel, where people are of one accord (One accord). Yes, we gather in the chapel, Just to sing and praise the Lord. Oh you’ll search, and you’ll search, but you’ll never find, No way on earth to gain peace of mind. Take your troubles to the chapel, get down on your knees and pray, Then your burdens will be lighter, and you’ll surely find the way, Yes, you’ll surely find the way!’ 

People oh people! Such simple but heartrending words of absolute truth! Wow! And we sung it so sweetly that all heaven was moved to tears! Don’t you just like it when we move all heaven to tears? Of course, because it means that we’ve done something, touching, sincere and truthful! That calls for another ‘Wow!’ this auspicious Sunday morning. 

But on a serious note though, it’s certainly amazing how the sentiments in such a short and simple song could be so true. For example; the tears many of us shed when we go to church are usually ones of joy, because something happens within our souls and spirits and we’re lifted up, we become contented through the power of the Holy Spirit flowing through us and renewing and refreshing us. 

And yuh know what? We don’t have to go to no big cathedral to search for God and pray, because we’ll find Him just as well in a simple chapel, where the folks are humble, because that’s one of the requirements of coming to Him in prayer. And we not asking for a whole lot usually – well some of us are (smile) but simply to grow stronger each day as we live in the presence of God’s amazing grace. 

And yuh better believe that there is no other way of finding peace on this ungodly earth than through the auspices of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! That’s for sure! As He unambiguously told the disciples, and consequently us: ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ 

Yes friends, the peace we get from Jesus is nothing like what this world has to offer; it’s an out of this world kind of peace, that ONLY He possesses and ONLY He can bestow! And that’s why we end up being contented and cry tears of joy in the chapel! And the best piece of advice there is to take ALL your troubles to God’s sanctuary, or really anywhere quiet and convenient, get down on your knees and pray; unburden your heart before Him, and He will lift your burdens and show you the way. 

Just listen to Jesus as He makes this wonderful offer to ALL those who are weighed down and burdened nuh. We call it the Great Invitation: ‘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 (gentle) and lowly (humble) in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt.11:28-30) 

How can you ever beat that offer eh friends? Nobody has ever offered anything even close to it. And yes, I do know that when things seem too good to be true, they usually are, but that’s in the lying and deceitful world of Satan, not in Jesus’ realm! He is God and has no cause to lie! And better still, He also has the power to perform whatever He promises! All praise and glory to His Holy Name! That’s why this song, ‘Crying in the Chapel’ is so perfect in its simplicity and truth! 

Oh how I wish more of us supposed believers would take hold of the simplicity of Jesus’ message and just run with them! It would make all of our lives so much easier. Our Lord and Saviour is not a complicated man, and His pronouncements are not complicated either. All He asks of us is to believe and obey! Is that so hard to do my people? Not at all! 

So this Sunday morning, let’s take a serious and sincere stand nuh promise ourselves to just live and work for Jesus, in whatever manner He desires of us! That’s the unadulterated, God-given wisdom of heaven, by which earth should be guided! Much LOVE!

…to whatever question you might ask…Jesus is the answer…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 May 2019 John 14:27.

John 14:27.   ​Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
 
To all my Scrip-Bit friends and family, ‘beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ!’ Yes fellow saints in Christ, may God’s grace and peace be with us this day, as we go out to do His will. 

And the scholars offer this interesting explanation of Bruh Paul’s favourite greeting. ‘1:7. Called to be saints: This tells how they got to be saints, namely by way of God’s call. (cf. Rom.8:30) Grace is the typical Greek greeting, whereas peace is the traditional Hebrew greeting.’ 

So canny man that he was, Bruh Paul put the two together to make his own. And believe you me friends, we need both the grace and peace of God, everyday we awaken to the cacophony and evil that’s currently going on in our world, if we’re to ever make a move forward! They are the only things that will keep us steady and steadfast and allow us to manoeuvre successfully in this world. 

And what is grace you ask? It’s simply God’s unmerited favour! He gives us stuff that we don’t deserve; stuff to help us get through this life in His way, as we seek first His kingdom. Just like mercy is basically not receiving the punishment we truly deserve. Yeh, they are simple terms, but are they ever important and effective if we want to live a truly Christian life! 

And peace…Oh friends, that’s the most wonderful of all God’s valued gifts. For when there is peace in your soul and spirit nothing moves you, nothing disturbs your equilibrium! Even in the most dangerous and life threatening storms you are calm and unmoveable because you have that wonderful peace of Jesus within you! Wow! 

And what kind of peace are we talking about, what peace is that, that’s so powerful it can calm us even in the time of storm? Remember, He’s the man who literally calmed the storm! ‘Even the winds and the sea obey him!’ (Matt.8:23-27) Oh friends, there is ONLY one kind of peace that’s so powerful, and that is the peace we receive from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ when we sincerely believe in and follow Him! 

And all His saints gratefully cried out: ‘Thank You Lord Jesus! Thank You for Your amazing peace so that we can handle this crazy, strife-filled, ungodly and evil world!’ And why is this peace so different from any other kind of peace? Because it comes from Jesus and it’s just different. Hear him tell it: ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ 

Hello there mih breddren! Jesus’ peace is nothing like what the world offers, because He’s conquered the world and all it’s evil, and like a mighty conqueror gives his citizens peace after the war, so does Jesus give His peace when you come to Him in humble sincerity. Hear these winning words of His later on. ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 1:33) 

Glory to God my people! Jesus, by His triumphant resurrection on Easter Sunday, has indeed defeated hell, death and the grave and taken away the keys from the evil one. Therefore in that immortal victory, all of His followers can find a substantial peace, a peace that’s not available to anyone else, or from anywhere else! 

As Bruh Paul so appropriately declared (yeh!) to the Romans: ‘Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us.’ (Rom.8:35-38) 

Mama Yo! What powerful and reassuring scriptures my brethren! If we sincerely believe in Jesus then all the problems of the world will not separate us from His awesome, amazing and ever-so-wonderful LOVE! That’s the power that’s found in Him! And you see it in Bruh Paul’s own life. All the trials and tribulation he endured, didn’t turn him away from Christ! In fact it made him stronger! 

As he said so powerfully in his missive to the church at Philippi: ‘Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.3:13-14) 

Yes friends, Bruh Paul wisely put his guilt from his earlier harassment of the church, as well as all his previous successes in building Christ’s church behind him, so that he could press on to the high calling of God, meaning there was still work to be done, and he could not afford to rest on his laurels. 

Oh my people, the same thing applies to us today. Please, let’s put all our guilt and whatever else behind us and press forward to the high calling that God has in store for each and every one of us! It’s time we took the bull by the horns and just moved forward as one, as one body, as Christ’s strong and immovable church! Amen! (smile) 

And with that stirring plea, let’s go home now declaring (yes!) our Thursday Blessings, outlining some of the grace that our God has so plentifully bestowed on us as believers in His only Son, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. In full voice, sincere hearts and strong sense of purpose: ‘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!’ 

Glory be mih people! But please note the proviso in that bountiful display of grace: we are not to hoard it, but to share it generously with others, just like Christ shared it generously with us! Much LOVE!

…sailing in this life… with Jesus as your guide and pilot…NO storm can disturb your peace of mind…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 February 2019 John 16:33.

John 16:33.   ​These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
 

Aye friends, I thought Saturday was a day for sleeping in? Then how come I’m not still in bed eh? I woke up around six and thought, no, this is way too early to get up. But the Lord or the enemy seem to have different ideas, so I rolled around in the bed until six thirty, finally realizing that I’d lost the fight to go back to sleep. But them’s the breaks! Just means that you will get the Bit a li’l earlier. (smile) 

And since today is Saturday, let’s get to some of our friend Anselm’s quotes of the week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Here is the first one: ‘A calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, so that’s very important for good health.’ You can’t dispute that friends! Calmness of mind is ever so important for making wise decisions as well as boosting health; physical, emotional and mental! 

But then to get that on a regular basis you need to be a follower of Jesus, who is the ONLY person able to give you true peace and stability on a sustained basis. Hear His awesome promise: ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ (John 14:27) You can’t beat that my faithful brethren! 

And then we have: ‘With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.’ More awesome truth my brethren! But again, the rightness of the strength and thoughts depends on our relationship with Jesus, for as the Good Book notes; Because of His great faithfulness, His mercies, His LOVING-kindness, His compassions are new every morning!  (Lam.3:22-23) So if we’re not in a strong relationship with Jesus, those early morning, every day new strength and thoughts might not be so good. 

Then there is this interesting quote: ‘I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.’ And technically speaking, I suppose that’s usually true, but let me tell you people, if the Lord is in that wind, and wants you to go to a particular place, you can adjust your sails as much as you want, but the only place you’ll end up is where the Lord wants you to. 

That I can tell you from personal experience, and I’m sure many of you have experienced the same thing! In the long run, it’s all about where the Lord wants us. 

And our friend Anselm threw in the Serenity Prayer for good measure this week: ‘God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.’ And friends, in this turbulent and unsettled world, do we ever need to prayer that pray every day…sometimes several times a day… if we wish to retain our sanity and make good, godly decisions. 

And the last quote says: ‘Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.’ And that’s the gospel truth!

Winning doesn’t provide strength, it only makes one lazier than normal, and content to sit on one’s rear end without any get up and go. You get like Rome and all those other big, splendiferous countries that fell to ruin because they became too fat and flaccid from always winning. 

The truth is that constant winning eventually ruins you instead of making you stronger. However, when you struggle, when you fight hardships mano a mano, then you develop strength! It’s just like lifting weights; you can’t develop muscles without constant weightlifting. 

Likewise, you can’t develop real inner strength without going through hardship and struggles. 

And we all know that this evil, ungodly world ruled by the evil enemy certainly is filled with much hardship and struggle, so you will have trials and tribulation cropping up from time to time. 

However friends, when you walk with Jesus, which is also not an easy thing to do in this world, He will help and guide you through those suffocating and troublesome times. He’ll be like your weight trainer; always beside you, offering encouragement and wise advice, even helping you lift the heavy weights that you find difficult lifting on your own! 

Wow! What a wonderful friend and helpmate is our Jesus! There’s NO other like Him in ALL the universe! Give Him much deserved thanks and praise my people! 

And Jesus said it in no uncertain terms: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ 

Ah friends, I know that will be difficult for us to do, but if we believe in Jesus and His promises, then we can do it. Jesus didn’t take an easy step on this earth, and He never promised that it would be all sunshine and roses for us either. But He did say that if we stuck with Him, He will bring us out safely. 

Now listen to these tough but encouraging words from Bruh Paul to the church at Corinth. ‘We are troubled (hard pressed) on every side, yet not distressed (crushed); we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken, cast (struck) down, but not destroyed: Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.’ (2 Cor.4:8-10) 

Yes my people, even though we suffer much tribulation, we WILL NOT give up, because we have the ultimate promise of Jesus, that if we live and die with Him, we will indeed be resurrected to eternal life, like He was! And you can’t beat that promise in this universe! Much LOVE!

…when troubles come…the wise thing to do…ask Jesus to help you handle them…He’ll NEVER refuse your sincere plea…