Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 November 2018 2 Timothy 1:7.

2 Timothy 1:7.    For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind (discipline).
 

Hear me calling: ‘Rain, rain, go away, come again some other day!’ That’s a heartfelt plea my brethren, because since I’ve come back from Jamaica, it’s been a steady diet of rain and more rain…and today looks like it might be more of the same. I guess the Lord’s reasoning is if we could have two weeks of brilliant sunshine, what’s wrong with a few days of rain eh? 

And as the duchess recently informed me, in her usual frank manner: ‘Stop complaining. You’ve been here for forty years. You should be accustomed to it by now!’ (smile) But who ever gets accustomed to the cold October and November rains eh? I know one person whom it doesn’t seem to bother though, that’s the ordinary workingman, once it’s Friday he’s happy regardless of the weather. His primary focus is having two days off from work to party. 

Hear him sing: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! And though the rain falling, and the place cold and miserable, I don’t care, because I don’t have to go to the massa work and slave mih life away for a small pittance and all the grief he want to cause me! Glory be! It’s the start of the weekend, that means is party time; time to swing and sway, eat and drink and let the good times roll! No holding back, just full steam ahead! Party, party, party! Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Ah friends, don’t you wish we could be as laid back and carefree as the ordinary workingman? We all surely do. However, as believers in and followers of Jesus Christ, we can’t afford that luxury because then the enemy, the evil Satan will joyfully infiltrate our souls and cause serious havoc therein. That’s why we need some boundaries in our everyday lives, points beyond which we won’t go, and that’s also why our weekend song, our Friday Chant is so different to his. 

Chant it with me now nuh: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen!’ 

Yes my people, we need to be always on our p’s and q’s when dealing with this evil world we live in. We’re workers for Jesus and thus must show the character, qualities and attitude that’s becoming to His glorious name! And yes, it is difficult sometimes to stay on the straight and narrow path that Jesus recommends, but we do have the reassurance and wherewithal to stay the course. 

Listen to these fruitful and famous words of reassurance from Bruh Paul to Timothy when the youngster was going through a rough time in his ministry in Ephesus. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind (discipline).’ 

Ah my people, each of us has been imbued with the Holy Spirit of Christ, which is supposed to lead and guide us in our daily lives; giving us that spirit of power, LOVE and a disciplined soul. However, it can only do its job if we listen to it and allow it to work its grace, mercy and forgiveness in our lives. So we do have what it takes to do Christ’s work, but most of us are not using those tools wisely. 

Remember, the Lord, through the Holy Spirit can’t work properly in our lives unless we give up ALL aspects of our lives to Him. Many of us hold back some areas and only give over those we think the Lord might be interested in. But that’s a sure fallacy friends, the Lord’s interested in EVERYTHING in our lives. He doesn’t want bits and pieces of it, He wants it ALL! 

Now listen, as Bruh Paul continues his reassurance to Timothy and to us. ‘Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions (share with me in the sufferings) of the gospel according to the power of God; Who hath saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began (time). 

But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles. For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against (until) that day. 

Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and LOVE which is in Christ Jesus. That good thing which was committed unto thee by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.’ (2 Tim.1:8-14) 

Oh friends, just a couple of points before we close. If we truly believe, then we cannot be ashamed of the gospel as so many of us are. And remember, Christ has abolished death and given us salvation unto eternal life. And that is assured! No one can take it from us. But we have to stand strong and steadfast in faith and do whatever it takes to win souls to Jesus and keep ourselves on the straight and narrow. 

Let’s hope that these words of Bruh Paul will reassure us and remind us of all the power and LOVE and discipline that we do have through the Holy Ghost, from the work of Jesus Christ. Amen. Much LOVE!

…a true believer…should not be ashamed…of whatever he believes in…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 July 2017 1 Peter 5:8.

1 Peter 5:8.   Be sober, be vigilant, because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.

So the celebrations continue apace! Yeh friends, Canada’s 150th Birthday Party is still going strong. It ought to wind down today, but tomorrow is the U.S. 4th of July Independence Day Celebrations, and whoever in the U.S was lucky enough to get today off would have a wonderful real long weekend! 

Hn, Hn! That means this is a big partying weekend in North America. But nonetheless, because the society runs 24/7,  some people have to go to work today, so they still need some encouragement to get up and go out on a Monday Morning, especially when so many of their co-workers don’t have to. So let’s give them a rousing sendoff nuh, with a rousing rendition of our Monday Morning Battle Hymn! (smile) 

All together now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

And wasn’t that a blast! Lots of enthusiasm and hoarse, croaking voices from those who are staying at home, while those headed for work, could only resignedly shake their heads in jealousy. Jesus, our choirmaster, sighed wearily and shook His head too. 

But friends, please let caution be our watchword in these long days of celebration, and let Granny’s advice be front and centre in our minds and souls: ‘Drunk or sober, please mind yuh business.’ I know some of us are tired hearing that bit of wisdom, but if we heed it, it will keep us out of a lot of problems, some of which can be very serious and life changing, as well as life ending. 

That’s why Peter warns us so strongly in our Bit: ‘Be sober, be vigilant, because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.’ 

Yeh friends, Lucifer is always on the lookout for those of us he can infiltrate. That’s all he does; walks to and fro in the earth looking for people to destroy, especially in times of celebration when all our weaknesses are most exposed. And he gets the most pleasure from destroying Christians. That’s why it is ever so necessary for us to keep our p’s and q’s about us, and don’t give him a chance to get into our lives. 

And Peter continues his advice. ‘Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) by your brethren that are in the world.’ (1 Pet.5:9) So the enemy doesn’t choose us specially to come against, he comes against everybody, all Christians, wherever he might spy an opening. That’s why we have to be strong in our faith and resist his evil overtures, otherwise we’ll just muddy up our heavenly situation. 

Now earlier on, Peter took a broader look at the situation when, in talking about Christian dedication, he declares: ‘Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind (prepare you minds for action), be sober, and hope to the end for the grace (rest your hope fully upon the grace) that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 

As obedient children, not fashioning (conforming) yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance. But as he which hath called you is holy, so ye be holy in all manner of conversation (conduct.)  Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.’ (1 Pet.1:13-16) 

That’s the way it is my brethren. If we intend to follow Christ, then we need to be serious, well-disciplined and as holy as possible, because that’s what Christ is about. And in any case, the best way to foil Lucifer’s unwanted advances is to stick close to Jesus. And Peter acknowledges that, as he puts the finishing touch on today’s story, a couple verses after our Bit.

‘But the God of all grace, who hath called us into his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet.5:10-11) 

Ah mih people, this life is not easy to handle, but if we are serious about following Jesus, then He will give us the wherewithal to handle the prince of this evil world and all his evil cohorts. So please keep standing strong and walking tall for Jesus and the glory of God. That’s the greatest state to which we can ever attain! Much LOVE!

…in proportion to our groundings in Christ… will be our ability to resist the enemy

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 May 2016 Psalm 33:15‏

Psalm 33:15.   He fashioneth their hearts alike (individually); he considereth (understands) all their works.

And it was Friday friends… and the rains came during the night…the early rain to water the dry and thirsty land, to irrigate the soil and make it more amenable to the sowing of good seed. 

And during that time lightning flashed sporadically, while Thor also beat his drums furiously, having the thunderous sound roll across the heavens in a mighty show of his awesome power! (smile) 

In other words friends, we had a big thunderstorm last night that provided much needed heavenly blessings for the earth, thus giving us a wet and cloudy Friday the 13th morning. 

Yes it is one of those superstitious Friday the 13th days that happen every so often during the year, and many of us will be on our p’s and q’s desperately trying to do, or not to do certain things that cause bad luck on such days. 

But precious people such belief is unworthy of a true believer in Jesus, because it’s just what it says it is – superstition – and can’t harm us in any way. 

And you’d note that a majority of the working populace are still shouting out loud and clear; ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and the weekend is here! Forget about massa and his slave labour! It’s party time; we time to do what we want. Thank God ever so much for Friday’s oui!’ 

And again I have to warn us that lustful and licentious behaviour should not be the main aspects of our weekend, because that just digs us into a deeper hole of sin and sorrow. What we need are activities that are more in tune with our Friday Chant, which we’ll now proclaim with the appropriate sincerity and truth. 

‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yes friends, the basic reason for the weekend is for us to rest and rejuvenate ourselves through godly fellowship, so that we can be strong and steadfast when the new workweek rolls along, not a tired, miserable, hung-over mess like so many of us end up being on a Monday morning. 

But enough of my haranguing, you’ll still do whatever you like. (smile) So let’s turn to our Bit, which gives us some insight into the wonderful workings of our ever-LOVING and omnipotent God. ‘He fashioneth their hearts alike (individually); he considereth (understands) all their works.’ 

Yes my brethren, our God has fashioned each of our hearts individually, we haven’t come off of a production line, where everything is the same. And on top of that, He takes a special and particular interest in every soul that He’s made. 

Listen, as the psalmist continues after our Bit. ‘There is no king saved by the multitude of a host: a mighty man is not delivered by much strength. A horse is a vain thing (false hope) for safety: neither shall he deliver any by his great strength. 

Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.’ (Ps.33:16-19) 

Yeh mih people, it’s all about the strength and LOVING-kindness of our magnificent God Jehovah, not about man’s strength which is sorely limited! 

And as Job’s friend, Elihu says so eloquently in his chastisement of Job: ‘For his (the Lord’s) eyes are upon the ways of man, and he seeth all his goings. There is no darkness, nor shadow of death, where the workers of iniquity may hide themselves.’ (Job 34:21-22) 

And as true believers, we all know that as gospel truth! The Lord looks down from His high heaven on all of us, and there’s no place that any of us can run or hide from His all-seeing, omniscient power. As Bruh David so wisely and wonderfully declares in Psalm 139 – The everlasting presence and power of God. 

‘Whither shall (can) I go from thy spirit? Or whither shall (can) I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell (Sheol), behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. 

If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me (fall on, hide me); even the night shall be light about me. Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee (is not dark to thee); but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.’ (Ps.139:7-12) 

Oh what beautiful words of scripture, my people! Gospel truth in black and white! There’s nowhere we can run or hide from our Creator, as so many of us futilely try to do. 

And we’ll end with these most appropriate words from Jeremiah’s prayer. ‘Great in counsel, and mighty in work (deed): for thine eyes are open upon all the ways of the sons of men: to give every one according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.’ (Jer.32:19) 

That says it all friends! Our God is continually looking down on us, checking our ways, so that He can meet out to us whatever we deserve. That means we just have to buckle down and live according to His will, if we want to receive His wondrous blessings and mercies. Much LOVE!

…why try to fight or hide from a God…who is omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent… that’s a fool’s wisdom…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 December 2013 Isaiah 33:22

Isaiah 33:22.   For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he shall save us.

And wonder of wonders – it’s Friday! ‘Yeah! TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!’ come the joyous shouts. It’s the shortest workweek we’ve had for a while, since most of us had both Christmas and Boxing Days off. And some of us were even lucky enough to finagle Friday off too. (smile)
 
In any case, I think we deserve some time off because we’ve worked so hard during the earlier part of the year. However, as always, we need to utilize our time properly, get our priorities straight, so that we don’t fall prey to the artful and deceitful traps of the arch deceiver, Lucifer, who’s always looking for a way into our lives.
 
So to help us get the right perspective, let’s chant our Friday Chant. With one sincere and heartfelt voice now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through.
 
Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’
 
Yes my people, especially in these heady days of celebrating Christ’s birth, we need to be continually on the lookout, to be on our p’s and q’s for anything that will give the enemy even a tiny foothold in our lives, for that’s all he needs to start worming his evil way into the marrow of our souls, and disfiguring the beautiful picture of Jesus we have painted there. So let’s enjoy ourselves, but remember that drunk or sober, we must mind our business.
 
And with that age-old warning, (smile) let’s turn to our Bit, hopefully the last day for it. (smile) ‘For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he shall save us.’
 
Oh mih breddren, I can’t get over how good and wonderful our God is to us nuh! Check this out. Earlier on in the week, I was wondering what Bit I would use for Christmas Day, since it’s the same basic stuff everybody uses and everybody knows. I wanted something different.
 
And lo and behold, a couple days before Christmas Day, the Lord led me to this scripture, with it lasting for several days, and most importantly having the king and saving aspect of it for His special day.
 
Wow! How can I not LOVE and worship Him eh? For He always meets my needs, lifts me out of any dark hole in which I’ve fallen, either literally or figuratively! Ah Friends, it’s so great to trust in the ONE TRUE GOD, He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! But let’s get back to our Bit, before I get more sentimental and get carried away. (smile)
 
And finally, today we’re going to look at the ‘lawgiver’ aspect of our great and wonderful God. And the first scripture comes from Isaiah, re the call to repentance to the sinful, rebellious, backsliding nation of Judah. ‘Hear the word of the Lord, ye rulers of Sodom; give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah.’ (Is.1:10)
 
Yes Friends, the people of Judah were behaving like those of Sodom and Gomorrah. The notes of the scholars’ will further explain the situation.
 
‘1:10-15. The prophet addressed the people of Judah as if they were the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah. His criticism of their hypocritical religion should not be taken as a rejection of the divinely ordained sacrificial system. Rather, it is a condemnation of their superficial worship. (See the note on 1 Sam.15:22-23) They were merely going through the ritual of religion, with no real heart for God.’
 
And 1 Sam.15:22:23, is where Samuel is lecturing Saul for his disobedience, and talking about ‘to obey is better than sacrifice.’ The scholars’ note says: ’15:22-23. These verses reinforce the Old Testament viewpoint that religious ritual devoid of spiritual reality and of a life of total allegiance to a sovereign Lord is worthless. (cf. Ps.40:6-8; Is.1:10-20; Mic.6:8).’
 
Unfortunately though Friends, we’re seeing the very same thing happening today, possibly to an even more disturbing degree. Evil has really gotten out of hand; it controls the world, with nobody, or no bodies strong and willing enough to rein it in.
 
But my fellow believers, that’s a big part of our job! As the church, the body of Christ here on earth, we are supposed to exemplify righteousness. But sadly, too many of us are either too afraid and/or cowardly to stand up against the evildoers, or we’re simply joining with them because we too delight in doing evil.
 
However my brethren, let’s remember that there’s always a price to be paid for evil doing; a substantial one too. Listen as our ever-faithful God, through His faithful prophet Isaiah, calls the faithful to courage.
 
‘Hearken unto me, my people; and give ear unto me, O my nation: for a law shall proceed (go forth) from me, and I will make my judgement (justice) to rest for a light of the people. My righteousness is near; my salvation is gone forth, and mine arms shall judge the people; the isles (coastlands) shall wait upon me, and on mine arm shall they trust.
 
Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax (grow) old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall die in like manner: but my salvation shall be for ever, and my righteousness shall not be abolished (broken).’ (Is.51:4-6)
 
Oh Friends, on those indisputably true and very serious words of our Creator, we’ll end today!
 
Please, please, let’s ponder them, let’s consider how they fit into our individual lives, and then, with the Father’s help, let’s make whatever adjustments are necessary for us to fall in line with them. For that is wisdom of the greatest magnitude! Much LOVE!
 
…to whom shall we look for righteousness… but to Him who created us…and gave us the law…