Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 December 2017 Romans 13:12.

Romans 13:12.   The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.

And as the days of Advent, the preparatory period before Christ’s birth advances, and the Christmas season intensifies, LOVE and joy, peace and goodwill fill the air! Wow! And I naively wonder, why can’t it be like that all year round eh? But I guess that’s just asking too much of our sinful secular society. A few days, once a year is all they seem to be able to spare. But we’ll take it and just keep working to get more. 

And as we gather in the sanctuary this Sunday, to worship and fellowship and give thanks, let’s burst out with a most worthy song, one of the all-time favourites of the Christmas season, ‘O come all ye faithful.’  In true Christmas spirit, let’s raise the roof of our sanctuary and that of heaven too with harmonious sacrificial praise from our joyful lips and hearts. 

‘O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant, Come ye, O come ye, to Bethlehem. Come and behold Him, born the King of angels; ( Chorus: O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.)  True God of true God, Light from Light Eternal, Lo, he shuns not the Virgin’s womb; Son of the Father, begotten, not created; (Chorus)  Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation; Sing, all ye citizens of heaven above! Glory to God, all glory in the highest; (Chorus)  

See how the shepherds, summoned to His cradle, Leaving their flocks, draw nigh to gaze; We too will thither bend our joyful footsteps; (Chorus)  Child, for us sinners poor and in the manger, We would embrace Thee, with love and awe; Who would not love Thee, loving us so dearly? (Chorus) Yea, Lord, we greet Thee, born this happy morning; Jesus, to Thee be glory given; Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing. O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.’ 

Ah friends, what a beautiful and grateful way to praise our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ for all that’s He’s done, is still doing and will do for us in the future. Praise His Holy Name. He is the reason why we have hope for the future, faith in salvation and joy in the promise of eternal life! All the more reason to LOVE and adore Him! Not to despise and cast aspersions and try to remove Him from our society. 

But I guess there will always be doubters and evildoers, so it’s up to us believers to raise His profile and make His LOVE Revolution a success. For we are His ears, arms, mouths, legs, and hands in the world, His ambassadors, His disciples, and as we go, so will His movement, His church. Some parts of it are thriving, who knows why, but most are finding it difficult to survive, and many are even closing. 

That’s not a very good vibe my people, and means that we’re not doing as good a job as we should. Christ is not being reflected in us as fully as He should be. That’s why we need to take the wise advice in our Bit, from Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.’ 

Yeh friends, it’s almost dawn, Jesus will soon be coming back, and right now our efforts are sadly lacking, so we need to improve dramatically. As Bruh Paul continues to the Roman church: ‘Let us walk honestly (properly), as in the day; not in rioting (revelry) and drunkenness, not in chambering (licentiousness) and wantonness (lewdness), not in strife and envying.’ (Rom.13:13) 

And it’s no secret friends that too many of us so-called Christians are deeply involved in too much of those worldly improprieties. We need to stop the hypocrisy; narrow the gulf between the Christian stuff we mouth, and the worldly trail we walk. As Bruh Paul warns: ‘But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.’ (Rom.13:14) 

And the scholars offer this explanation re that verse. ‘13:14. Make not provision for the flesh: One should not seek opportunities to satisfy deep-seated desires of the sin nature, but should seek occasion to manifest works that are consistent with the new life in Christ.’  

And that’s all Christ is asking of us yes friends: if you claim to believe in Him, then please live the way He desires you to live. He doesn’t expect us to be perfect, because we don’t have the capacity for that, but He does expect us to be excellent and diligent in doing His work, like He was excellent and diligent in doing the Father’s work here on earth. When we don’t walk our talk, we just cause others to bad-mouth our Saviour and further demean His reputation, thus playing into the hands of the workers of iniquity. 

Therefore my faithful brethren, let’s do like Bruh Paul suggests to the Ephesians nuh. ‘And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove (expose) them). For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. But all things that are reproved (exposed) are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.’ (Eph.5:11-14) 

Oh friends, if we sincerely want to help the cause of Jesus, then we have to stop indulging in those sins that we know are ‘unfruitful works of darkness,’ sins of the unsaved, and instead expose them, bring them into the light, show them for the wrongdoings  that they are. It’s time friends, time for less talk and more action, time to throw off the cloak of darkness and put on the mantle of light that Jesus offers. That’s the ONLY way our world will ever improve. Much LOVE!

…Christians…oh Christians…where is your light that’s supposed to shine in the darkness…to light up the world…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 December 2016 Psalm 119:57.

Psalm  119:57.    Thou art my portion, O Lord: I have said that I would keep thy words. 

And then it was rain, mixing up with the snow, and with the lower night time temps, more likely than not turning to ice. Yes friends, that’s what we’re looking forward to this Sunday before Christmas 2016; an icy world. 

But yuh know what? That’s not going to stop us from going to the Lord’s sanctuary and celebrating His Sabbath Day. We going to get there, even if we have to walk and/or crawl. (smile) 

And when we get there we’re going to have glorious fellowship, with plenty thanks and praise and worship and preaching of the Word, so that we can leave feeling rejuvenated and refreshed, strong and full of confidence to go out and live a good and true Christian life in the upcoming week. 

Now let’s begin the praise and worship with this beautiful hymn, ‘O Come All ye Faithful.’ Yes my brethren, please let our faithful voices raise our praise and glory to high heaven in perfect harmony!  

‘O Come All Ye Faithful Joyful and triumphant, O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem. Come and behold Him, Born the King of Angels; O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord. 

O Sing, choirs of angels, Sing in exultation, Sing all that hear in heaven God’s holy word. Give to our Father glory in the Highest; O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord. 

All Hail! Lord, we greet Thee, Born this happy morning, O Jesus! For evermore be Thy name adored. Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing; O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.’ 

Ah mih people, this is the season of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ’s birth in the lowly stable in Bethlehem, and we ought to be celebrating it with lots of enthusiasm, passion and spiritual awareness. Remember, Christmas is the occasion that got the whole Christian thing; the ball of salvation, forgiveness of sins, reconciliation, justification and the promise of eternal life rolling. 

And if we don’t fully appreciate it, we won’t be able to fully appreciate what it caused either. So please tone down the worldly activities, and instead raise the godly ones, for without Jesus there would be no Christmas, no gifts, no set of food, in fact no celebration at all at this time of year. 

And now that I’ve said my piece, (smile) let’s turn to our Bit, a powerful acknowledgement of God’s place in the psalmist’s life. ‘Thou art my portion, O Lord: I have said that I would keep thy words.’ Yeh friends, the Lord ought to be our portion, and we ought to faithfully keep His words if we claim to be believers in His Son Jesus Christ. 

Now today I want to look at some other scriptures that uphold, which corroborate the words of our Bit. Let’s begin with something from Numbers. ‘And the Lord spake unto Aaron, Thou shalt have no inheritance in their land, neither shalt thou have any part among them: I am thy part and thine inheritance among the children of Israel. And, behold, I have given the children of Levi all the tenth in Israel for an inheritance (a possession), for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation.’ (Num.18:20-21) 

So Aaron and his descendants, the priests, would own no land in Israel. The scholars explain it thus: ‘18:8-20. In recognition of their altar service, the priests were to receive parts of the sacrifices, firstfruits of the harvest, and firstborn animals (cf. Lev.6:14-7:36; 27:26-33). The priests’ families could also eat from these offerings as long as they were “clean.” Their inheritance would be God Himself, who provided for their needs through His people’s gifts. (v.20) 

‘18:21-24. Tithing was now provided for the tribe of Levi (Gen.14:20; 28:22: Lev.27:30-33). The tithe was a payment for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation (v.21; cf.31). It also compensated for their lack of an inheritance in land. Later they were given 48 villages which were scattered throughout the land (34:16-35:8).’  

That means those in charge of running the tabernacle, had no other duties but looking after God’s house, and the Lord provided food for them from the gifts of the people. Now hear Bruh David from Psalm 16, where he seeks preservation and blessing. 

‘The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest (upholds) my lot. The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places: yea, I have a goodly heritage (inheritance). I will bless the Lord, who hath given me counsel; my reins (heart) also instruct me in the night seasons.’ (Ps.16:5-7) 

Meanwhile, Jeremiah in his Lamentations boldly declares: ‘The Lord is my portion, saith my soul: therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.’ (Lam.3:24-26) Wonderful advice my fellow believers! 

And we’ll end with some more wonderful advice, this time from the psalmist Asaph, from Psalm 73 – The mystery of prosperous wickedness. ‘My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength (rock) of my heart, and my portion for ever. For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee (that are unfaithful). But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all thy works.’ (Ps.73:26-28)  

Oh friends, the Lord God Jehovah, Creator and Controller of the universe, ought to be a big part of our lives if we truly believe. Now let’s take some time today and consider how big a portion He is in our lives, and as always, ask Him to help us make it bigger. For that’s wisdom of enormous proportions! Much LOVE! 

…the bigger the portion of God in us…the better…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 December 2015 2 Chronicles 26:5‏

2 Chronicles 26:5.  And he sought God in the days of Zechariah who had understanding in the visions (fear) of God: and as long as he sought the Lord, God made him to prosper.

Well mih precious people, we down to two days now! Yes, only two more days to that wonderful and marvellous day called Christmas, when the Christ-child, our Saviour, Lord and Redeemer was born! So in honour of that most auspicious occasion let’s give some sacrificial praise and thanksgiving nuh, by singing this beautiful carol. 

All together, in full voice now: ‘O come all ye faithful joyful and triumphant Oh come ye O come ye to Bethlehem; come and behold him born the King of angels; Oh come let us adore Him, Oh come let us adore Him, O come let us adore Him, Christ the Lord. 

God of God light of light Lo, He abhors not the virgin’s womb; Very God begotten not created: Oh come let us adore Him, Oh come let us adore Him, O come let us adore Him, Christ The Lord. 

Sing choirs of angels sing in exultation Sing all ye citizens of heaven above; Glory to God in the highest: Oh come let us adore Him, Oh come let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ The Lord. 

See how the shepherds summoned to his cradle, leaving their flocks, draw nigh with lowly fear we too will thither hend our joyful footsteps; Oh come let us adore Him, Oh come let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.’ 

Oh Friends, I do hope that brought some Christmas cheer and joy into our spirits as we sang about the imminent birth of Jesus. We need to be continually reminded that Jesus IS the reason for the season! Glory to God! 

And since it’s Wednesday, we also need to proclaim our Wednesday Wail. Again, as ONE, in full 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 isn’t that the glorious truth my brethren! We’re all glad to be alive, with our hands fixed securely on the plough, looking towards the wonderful future with Jesus that’s ahead of us. Give Him some well-deserved praise my people for what He’s done so selflessly and sacrificially for us! 

Now let’s turn to our Bit. I believe today is the final day for it, but it’s something we should mark indelibly in our hearts minds and souls so that we can wisely do what it says. 

And he sought God in the days of Zechariah who had understanding in the visions (fear) of God: and as long as he sought the Lord, God made him to prosper.’ 

Now that’s truth in spades friends! Whenever we seek the Lord in sincerity and truth, He will allow us to prosper in all facets of life. But if we don’t, then we’ll pay the price. 

Yesterday we saw how Uzziah got ahead of himself when he tried to burn incense in the temple, when he full well knew that that was the priest’s job, and he was immediately felled with a lifetime of leprosy. 

Today, we’ll look at another king Asa, who also thought he was above God’s power and presence, and after starting out good, ended up poorly by not taking all his problems to God, but tried fixing then himself. And the Good Book tells us that after Asa straightened out Judah, with the Lord’s help obviously, there was no more war for thirty-five years. (2 Chr.15:19). 

However, thereafter, Baasha, the king of Israel, the other Jewish kingdom, made war against Judah, but unwisely, instead of turning to the God of his fathers for help, Asa made a treaty with Benhadad, king of Syria. And although with the help of the Syrians, Judah won the war, the Lord’s displeasure fell on him. 

The Good Book reports it thus: ‘And at that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah, and said unto him, Because thou hast relied on the king of Syria, and not relied on the Lord thy God, therefore is the host (army) of the king of Syria escaped out of thine hand. Were not the Ethiopians and the Lubim a huge host, with very many chariots and horsemen? 

Yet, because thou didst rely on the Lord, he delivered them into thine hand. For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward (at peace with, or loyal to) him. 

Herein thou hast done foolishly: therefore from henceforth thou shalt have wars. Then Asa was wroth with the seer, and put him in a prison house; for he was in a rage with him because of this thing. And Asa oppressed some of the people the same time.’ (2 Chr.16:7-10) 

Oh friends, how come we so quickly forget what the Lord has done for us eh? So much so that when we get strong, we become too big for out britches and turn away from the Lord. 

And the sad part of the story is that even after Asa was shown his fault, he never remembered that God had caused him to be all that he was, and was so angry with Hanani that he threw him into prison and began oppressing his people. 

Now contrast that attitude with Bruh David’s when the prophet Nathan draped him up over his behaviour with Bathsheba and her husband Uriah. His response was to cry out to God for mercy and forgiveness instead of getting on his high horse like Asa: 

‘Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy LOVING-kindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.’ (Ps.51:1-3)  

Yes my fellow believers, that’s how we are to react when the Lord convicts us of our transgressions, not like Asa. And the Lord forgave Bruh David in his humble repentance. But listen to Asa’s fate for his foolish pride. 

‘And Asa in the thirty and ninth year of his reign was diseased in his feet, until his disease was exceeding great: yet in his disease he sought not the Lord, but to the physicians.’ (2 Chr.16:12) 

Oh how sad my people! Even in the time of his tribulation, he refused to turn back to God! What happens to our minds when we get strong and powerful eh? How can we ever forget that it’s God who brought us to the dance and who will also take us home? 

There must be something about strength and power that curdles our minds like milk gone sour and bad. I guess like the man says, ‘power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.’ 

Please my people, let’s never forget where all our blessings and mercies and grace and forgiveness come from, so that we won’t have to be cut down to size by our heavenly Father. Now that’s wisdom at its zenith! Much LOVE!

…it is the Lord who gives us power to get wealth…the Lord also removes that power…therefore…the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh…please remember that…

P.S. Sorry about the lateness of the Bit Friends, but it was one of those late nights and thus late mornings. (smile) Much LOVE!