Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 June 2018 Psalm 90:4.

Psalm 90:4.   For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night (three hours).

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday! The awesome day we gather in the Lord’s sanctuary to fellowship, worship and give Him mucho thanks and praise. So all roads ought to be leading to the Lord’s house today, especially when we consider what our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ said in His Great Invitation: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.’ (Matt.11:28) 

Yeh friends, the Sabbath is a day to find rest in Jesus, and you can’t find it unless you go to Him sincerely seeking Him. He’s just waiting there with open arms for us to come to Him. So let’s not keep Him waiting nuh. And today, we’ll begin the proceedings with an old favourite from the pen of Isaac Watts, ‘O (Our) God, our help in ages past.’ 

So without further ado, let’s raise our hearts, heads and voices heavenward as we offer up praise, worship and thanksgiving to our amazing and ever-LOVING God!  ‘O (Our) God, our Help in ages past, our Hope for years to come, our Shelter from the stormy blast, and our eternal Home. 

Under the shadow of Thy throne Thy saints have dwelt secure; sufficient is Thine arm alone, and our defense is sure. Before the hills in order stood or earth received its frame, from everlasting Thou art God, to endless years the same. 

A thousand ages in Thy sight are like an ev’ning gone, short as the watch that ends the night before the rising sun. 

Time, like an ever-rolling stream, bears all its sons away; they fly forgotten, as a dream dies at the op’ning day. O (Our) God, our Help in ages past, our Hope for years to come, be Thou our Guide while life shall last, and our eternal Home!’ 

Oh my people, what we’ve just sung is oh so true; every word of it! And they say it was based on Psalm 90, the psalm of Moses, and that seems to be also true, as Moses declares with unerring truth: ‘Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place (refuge) in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed (gave birth to) the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God.’ (Ps.90:1-2)

Mama Yo! What words of indisputable truth! Before God even formed the world He was God! And since He made Israel His people, they found refuge in Him, when they were wise! And who should know better than Moses eh, since he led God’s people out of bondage from Egypt to the Promised Land, and communicated God’s laws to them during that fateful trip through the wilderness. 

And as Moses continues: ‘Thou turnest man to destruction; and sayest, Return, ye children of men. For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night (three hours). Thou carriest them away as with a flood; they are as a sleep: in the morning they are like grass which groweth up. In the morning it flourisheth, and groweth up, in the evening it is cut down, and withereth.’ (Ps.90:3-6) 

Yeh friends, in terms of time, one day to us is like a thousand years to God, since time has no real reckoning with Him. And as Peter corroborates in his message on living in the hope of the Lord’s coming: ‘But beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.’ (2 Pet.3:8) 

Then we come back to Moses, who declares: ‘The days of our years (lives) are threescore years and ten (seventy); and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength (boast only) labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.’ (Ps.90:10)  

All of that just means friends that our lives are like vapour, we exist for moment in God’s eyes then we are gone, like the grass that grows in the morning and dies in the evening. And even if we live fourscore (80) years (29,200 days) that to God is like 29,200 years. Imagine that nuh; to us 80 years is a big deal, but to Almighty God, it’s a mere flash in the pan. (smile) 

The long and short of the story though friends, is that we are very finite, while God is infinite, plus He is our God and Creator and if we are smart we will hold on to His strong and mighty hand. And Moses was qualified to talk about death and all the other stuff since he saw a whole generation of Israelites perish in the wilderness for their disobedience. 

Thus, when he beseeches God, we ought to listen, to pay serious attention. ‘So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom (gain a heart of wisdom)…. O satisfy us early with thy mercy; that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.’ (Ps.90:12,14) 

And we’ll close with some immortal words of Cousin Sol. ‘Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom; and with all thy getting get understanding. Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she hall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her. She shall give to (place on) thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee.’ (Prov.4:7-9) 

Truer words were never spoken my brethren! So please, please, let’s seek wisdom and understanding through the Lord’s word, which leads to obedience, then we’ll be bestowed with the grace and glory we so greatly desire. Much LOVE!

…the only real wisdom that man needs…is to be obedient to his God and his Creator…everything else is foolishness…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 January 2018 Psalm 48:14.

Psalm 48:14.   For this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death.

And there was joy in the morning, because it was Sunday; the day most Christians choose to rest and to gather in fellowship to sing and praise their marvellous God. And believe me friends, there’s nothing better than worshipping Almighty God and singing His wonderful praises. Therefore, let’s begin the proceedings by voicing the beautiful and true words of the old, but dearly beloved Isaac Watts hymn, ‘O God our help in ages past,’ written a couple of centuries ago, but still going strong. 

In strong, harmonious voices now, let’s offer up the sacrifice of praise to heaven. ‘O God, our Help in ages past, our Hope for years to come, our Shelter from the stormy blast, and our eternal Home. Under the shadow of Thy throne Thy saints have dwelt secure; sufficient is Thine arm alone, and our defense is sure. Before the hills in order stood or earth received its frame, from everlasting Thou art God, to endless years the same. 

A thousand ages in Thy sight are like an ev’ning gone, short as the watch that ends the night before the rising sun. Time, like an ever-rolling stream, bears all its sons away; they fly forgotten, as a dream dies at the op’ning day. O God, our Help in ages past, our Hope for years to come, be Thou our Guide while life shall last, and our eternal Home!’ 

What words of immortal truth my people! Our great God has indeed been our help in times past, and is also the One we place our future hope upon. He’s been our shelter from innumerable storms and He’s the One we will dwell with in eternity, after this earthly life is over. And to further expand His resume, He’s omnipotent, omniscient and omni-present! Hn! What a truly mighty God we serve! There is no other supposed deity who even comes close to Him, because He is the Only True and Living God! 

That’s why we can proclaim with strong conviction like the psalmists, the sons of Korah, do in this verse that’s our Bit.  ‘For this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death.’ 

There’s no more left to say my fellow believers, that says it all! Our God is so amazing, so awesome; that we have no doubts whatsoever about serving and worshipping until the end of time! No one can come between us and our God, because He is everything we need and want…and then some! 

Hear how Moses puts it in his psalm. ‘Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place (refuge) in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed (gave birth to) the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God’ (Ps.90:1-2) 

Wow! As the French would say, ‘Tres Magnifique!’ Yes that’s our God; magnificent in every way my people! No wonder the sons of Korah open Psalm 48 with this verse. ‘Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, in the mountain of his holiness.’ (Ps.48:1) 

And later on they declare: ‘We have thought of thy LOVING-kindness, O God, in the midst of thy temple. According to thy name, O God, so is thy praise unto the ends of the earth: thy right hand is full of righteousness. Let mount Zion rejoice, let the daughters of Judah be glad, because of thy judgements.’ (Ps.48:9-11) Yeh friends, our God is also just and righteous! What more can we ask for eh? Nothing really, because He possesses all the elements and attributes that make up a true godly Being. 

Now listen to the sons of Korah from Psalm 47 – God is the King of all the earth. ‘Sing praises to God, sing praises: sing praises unto our King, sing praises. For God is the King of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding. God reigneth over the heathen (gentiles): God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness. The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted.’ (Ps.47:6-9) 

And so He should be my people! Our God deserves exaltation, reverence and glory to the fullest degree, not to mention obedience, obeisance and LOVE! Remember, ‘We LOVE him, because he first LOVED us.’ (1 John 4:19) That’s another feather in His cap! (smile) ‘And God commendeth (demonstrated) his LOVE toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom.5:8) How can we not LOVE, honour and obey Him eh friends, He’s such a wonderful Deity! 

Unfortunately though, the sinful world we live in, and our own fallen nature cause many of us to shy away from God. But that’s not wise friends, for He is the only One who can save us from a life of disasters and eternal damnation, through His Son Jesus Christ. That’s why we need to get even closer to God, so that we are not on the outside looking in when the day of final judgement arrives. For it will indeed be a sad day when unbelievers are thrown into the lake of fire. 

Please ponder that fact and see if it’s to your liking. And if it isn’t, then you need Jesus. And remember in this year of 2018, we’ve resolved to have a closer walk with our Lord and Saviour. So let’s sincerely do that nuh, since it will be definitely to our benefit. Much LOVE!

…just a closer walk with thee…grant it Jesus…is my plea…daily walking close to thee…let it be…dear Lord…let it be…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 November 2017 Proverbs 13:12.

Proverbs 13:12.   Hope deferred maketh the heart sick, but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.

And as the church bells peal the call to church, we put on our Sunday best and get ready to gather in the house of God, be it a magnificent cathedral or a manger like where Christ was born. The physical place is not as important as the people who gather in Christ’s name, and what they do there; sing, praise, worship and glorify His holy name. 

Oh friends, only the ole fogeys will remember the simpler days when church bells rang to tell us how long before church began. And you’d see a whole lot of us hurrying into church just as the last bell was ringing. (smile) But sadly church bells are now a thing of the past, just like church going is for way too many of us. 

Anyway, enough reminiscing, let’s get on with today’s proceedings. And we’ll open with this well-known 18th century hymn by Isaac Watts, based on Psalm 90:1, to instill a sense of assurance and a place of refuge in Almighty God. 

So let’s raise our voices in sacrificial praise like we’ve truly found that sense of assurance and place of refuge nuh. ‘O God, our help in ages past, Our hope for years to come, Our shelter from the stormy blast, And our eternal home. Under the shadow of Thy throne Thy saints have dwelt secure; Sufficient is Thine arm alone, And our defense is sure. Before the hills in order stood, Or earth received her frame, From everlasting Thou art God, To endless years the same. 

Thy Word commands our flesh to dust, “Return, ye sons of men”: All nations rose from earth at first, And turn to earth again. A thousand ages in Thy sight Are like an evening gone; Short as the watch that ends the night Before the rising sun. The busy tribes of flesh and blood, With all their lives and cares, Are carried downwards by the flood, And lost in foll’wing years. 

Time, like an ever-rolling stream, Bears all its sons away; They fly, forgotten, as a dream Dies at the op’ning day. Like flow’ry fields the nations stand Pleased with the morning light; The flow’rs beneath the mower’s hand Lie with’ring ere ’tis night. O God, our help in ages past, Our hope for years to come, Be Thou our guard while troubles last, And our eternal home.’ 

Oh my people, those words come close, but they can’t really do our great God justice, for there are no words to truly describe what He means to mankind.  He is our BE ALL and END ALL! We are created by Him, live physical life under His dominion, then end up wherever He thinks our spiritual life is best suited. So since He is Master of ALL He surveys, true wisdom will dictate that we put ALL of our trust and hope in Him. 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘Hope deferred maketh the heart sick, but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.’ And we only had time yesterday to admit to that truth; when we don’t have hope, we’re depressed and miserable, but when we do have it, we’re revitalized and joy abounds. But what actually is that thing we call Hope eh? 

Here is an interesting definition from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from His Hour of Power Devotional.  He says: ‘HOPE. It is a scientific experience of the presence of God operating in your personality… Your good luck is really your good Lord. Hope is a mystery. God always offers hope regardless of your beliefs, whether you are an agnostic or atheist. Hope is the presence of a God of LOVE coming into your mind, your spirit, your body, your personality. This is God. This is HOPE!’ 

And who are we to doubt him eh? However we define hope, it is important to realize that it comes from our LOVING Creator, and it is given to reassure and encourage us to have faith in Him. Moses so rightly declared in the opening of his psalm. ‘Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place (refuge) in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed (gave birth to) the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting thou art God.’ (Ps.90:1-2)  And if all of that is true my people, then the only logical place to look for succour and refuge, to acquire that mysterious, scientific uplifting experience termed hope, is from Almighty God! 

And another stalwart of faith, Bruh David concurs completely with Moses, as he questions his depressed mood. ‘Why art thou cast (bowed) down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted in me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).’ (Ps.42:5) Yuh see friends, Bruh David is there seeking refuge, hope, relief from his depression, revitalization through God’s presence. And if we are wise, we will do the same thing. 

Now hear how Bruh Paul describes hope in his epistle to the Roman church, as he expounds on the results of justification. ‘And patience, experience (character); and experience hope: And hope maketh not ashamed (does not disappoint); because the LOVE of God is shed abroad (has been poured out) in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. For when we were yet without strength, in due time (at the right time) Christ died for the ungodly.’ (Rom.5:4-6) Yes friends, Christ died that we might have hope, and the Holy Spirit dwelling within us is the living sign of that hope, as He walks and talks with and for us. 

And we’ll close with one more applicable scripture from Bruh Paul to the Romans, as he talks about Life in the Spirit. ‘For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience (perseverance) (eagerly) wait for it.’ (Rom.8:24-25) Truer words were never spoken my brethren! Now let’s put our hope and trust in God nuh, so that our faith can be boosted and our lives become more Christ-like. Much LOVE!

…you can’t have faith without hope…for hope is the underlying nature…the foundation of faith…



Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 February 2017 John 3:16.

John 3:16.   For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Ah my fellow believers, that wonderful day, Sunday – the Lord’s Day, is here again! And you know what that means? Gathering together in His sanctuary to fellowship with each other, to worship, praise, exalt and glorify Him, as well as receive strength and direction to do His will in the upcoming week.  And I do hope we are all declaring like Bruh David did: ‘I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord.’ (Ps.122:1) 

Yeh friends, we can’t be true believers unless we are happy to go into God’s house. I know many of us just go because we think we should go to church since we claim to be Christians, but we’re not really joyful about going. We don’t expect, or look forward to good vibes or joyful feelings or even good relationships happening there. 

But that’s not the right attitude my brethren. How can you be a true believer if you are not happy in the Lord’s sanctuary eh? But we won’t belabour the point, we’ll just open the celebrations with the singing of this old but glorious hymn: ‘O God our help in Ages Past.’ So, offering up the sacrifice of praise from our lips, let’s belt it out like there was no tomorrow. 

‘O God, our help in ages past, our hope for years to come, our shelter from the stormy blast, and our eternal home: Under the shadow of your throne, your saints have dwelt secure; sufficient is your arm alone, and our defense is sure. Before the hills in order stood or earth received its frame, from everlasting you are God, to endless years the same. 

A thousand ages in your sight are like an evening gone, short as the watch that ends the night before the rising sun. Time, like an ever-rolling stream, soon bears us all away; we fly forgotten, as a dream dies at the opening day. O God, our help in ages past, our hope for years to come, still be our guard while troubles last, and our eternal home!’ 

Yes friends, that was most excellent! And it brings us to our Bit; possibly the most important verse of scripture in God’s Word, that pertains to us, for from it, everything else flows. ‘For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’ 

Ah mih people, such awesome, exciting and life-giving words! And today I’m just going to continue sharing scripture passages that talk about LOVE and reveal its true nature. Now let’s begin with Jesus as He sets the stage for all that follows. 

Listen to Jesus’ response to a tempting question from a lawyer -they haven’t changed, still tempters: (smile) ‘Master (Teacher), which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt LOVE the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And second is like unto it, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.’ (Matt.22:36-40) 

It’s so simple friends. That’s the beauty of Jesus’ teachings; they are very simple and straightforward! And I won’t theorize on why so many of us DON’T LOVE the Lord, but I will do so on why we DON’T LOVE our neighbours? Because we simply DON’T LOVE ourselves. If we did, it would not be so difficult to show kindness and mercy, compassion and understanding to others. And you’ll understand why I say that when you read some of Bruh Paul’s exhortation on ‘The way of LOVE’ to the Corinthians. 

‘Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels and have not LOVE, I am become as sounding brass, or tinkling (clanging) cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not LOVE, I am nothing.  And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not LOVE, it profiteth me nothing. LOVE suffereth long, and is kind; 

LOVE envieth not; LOVE vaunteth not (does not brag on) itself, is not puffed up (arrogant), Doth not behave itself unseemly (rudely), seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil (keeps no recounts of evil); Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, endureth all things. LOVE never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail (cease); whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away… And now abideth faith, hope, LOVE, these three; but the greatest of these is LOVE.’ (1 Cor.13:1-8; 13) 

Ah mih Christian breddren, what else can we say about LOVE and its awesome power eh? Nothing really, except hope and pray that we will all embrace it even a li’l more in our lives, because it’s such a big substance and emotion, that even a li’l bit goes a long way. (smile) 

And we’ll conclude today with this passage from Revelation, where John greets the seven churches. ‘And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten (born) of the dead, and the prince of (ruler over) the kings of the earth. Unto him that LOVED us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (Rev.1:5-6) 

Now please, let’s ponder all that we’ve said today my people, because it’s ever so important for us to get the spirit of LOVE joyfully moving and grooving in our hearts, souls, bodies and minds, if we are to achieve any success for Jesus. Much LOVE!

…what the world needs now is…LOVE, LOVE, LOVE…not just for some…but for everyone…