Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 March 2018 1 Chronicles 28:9.

1 Chronicles 28:9.   And thou, Solomon  my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off forever.

Well friends, we’ve gotten through the horror of Good Friday, where we saw Jesus crucified to pay for our abominable sins. It wasn’t easy, but we understood the reason why it had to happen: No sacrificial death, no salvation. For the price of sin had to be paid in sinless blood, and Jesus’ blood was the ONLY one that met the full criteria. 

Now it’s time to wait for His awesome resurrection; His victory over hell, death and the grave, where He dangles the keys to the gates of hell before an awestruck, defeated Lucifer. (smile) 

Yes my fellow believers, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ gave us the victory over the enemy by His sacrificial death on the cross. The least we can do now is show a fair amount of appreciation by living and working diligently and excellently in His name, to spread the good news of His gospel around the entire world. 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Here’s the first one: ‘Being happy doesn’t mean everything’s perfect. It means you’ve decided to look beyond the imperfections.’ Now that’s something a lot of us perfectionists need to understand. Perfection is not possible, and if we don’t rise above our imperfections, we’ll never be happy. 

Then there’s: ‘Be gentle with yourself, you’re doing the best you can.’ That’s something else many of us need to learn and do, because we keep beating ourselves up unnecessarily. Remember we can’t be perfect, so once we’re really trying, there’s no need to abuse ourselves. And what’s so foolish and unfair about that is we give a lot of leeway to others, but not enough to ourselves. 

So what then? ‘Focus on the good.’ ‘That’s elementary, my dear Watson,’ you reply. Not really nuh, because if most of us were constantly focused on the good, our world would not be in such a sorry state. It’s because we’re NOT focused on the good that life in this realm of plenty is so rough for so many. 

And we’ll end with this quote: ‘Rule your mind, or it will rule you.’ And is that ever so true my brethren, for it all takes place in the mind, or as Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) refers to it, ‘The battlefield of the mind.’ That’s where all our wars and battles take place. And that’s why when we allow the enemy to control our thoughts, he can therefore control our lives. Because as a man thinks, so is he. We become what we think about most. 

So if we think about the things of the world more than those of Jesus, then we’ll become more like the world, and vice versa. That’s why it’s necessary to have good and positive thoughts above all else. They will lift you up, while negative emotions will only drag you further down to Hades. (smile) And we don’t want that now, do we? Of course not! 

That’s why some of the best advice ever given to a son was that of Bruh David to Cousin Sol in our Bit. ‘And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off forever.’ 

Yeh friends, if we want to live godly and righteous lives, we have to keep our minds focused on stuff that’s godly and righteous. And remember that God looks deep into our hearts and minds to find our true purpose and motives before considering our outward show. So if what’s in our minds and what’s in our actions are different, then the Lord will discover them and act accordingly. 

For as Jesus said: ‘Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth that defileth a man.’ (Matt.15:11) And what comes out of us is what we have focused in our minds. So if our thoughts are evil, then our deeds will most likely be evil too. No wonder Jesus also warned us thus: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things will be added unto you.’ (Matt.11:33) 

Fellow believers, our omniscient and all powerful God knows what we need to function on this earth, and He has promised to give it to us if we keep Him first place in our minds, bodies and actions. If you think primarily on the things of the world, they will be of no avail in the long run. 

For as Jesus says: ‘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, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt.6:19-21) 

Words of everlasting wisdom my people, from the creator of all wisdom! Now are we going to be wise and follow them, or foolish and think on the wrong things? That’s up to each individual, but please remember that there are consequences for each line of thought, and before you decide, it would be wise to consider the consequences of each. Much LOVE!

…obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him… (Charles Stanley)

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 March 2018 Matthew 5:20.

Matthew 5:20.   For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case (by no means) enter the kingdom of heaven.

One more day friends! Yes one more day; that’s what we’ve been given, and that’s why it’s called a present, a gift, as well as the present, because it’s all we have to work with.  

Yesterday has gone by for ever, and tomorrow has not come as yet, if it ever will.  Therefore, we need to do all that we can in this present day to exalt the ONE and ONLY, True, Living God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, as best we can. 

And all God’s children said a loud, proud and grateful, ‘Praise the Lord! Thank Him for all His goodness and LOVING-kindness to the undeserving children of men. Amen! 

And as the li’l thought from the Daily Bread Devotional tells us: ‘Jesus gave His ALL; He deserves our ALL.’ I couldn’t have put it any better my brethren. Jesus did not penny-pinch and play the scrooge when He sacrificed His sinless life for us. He gave it everything He had, put His whole heart and soul into what He was doing for us. 

Now, after He died for us, then rose from the grave, from the dead, so that we too can rise eventually, given us salvation, and is interceding for us at the Father’s right hand in heaven, while His Spirit lives in our souls, leading and guiding us in all truth, don’t you think the least we can do in return is to work tirelessly and faithfully to bring His wonderful church to fruition? 

Wow! What a mouthful my people! (smile) But it is the living truth. We’re definitely not doing as much as we ought to grow Jesus’ church. And WE ALL KNOW IT! We’re still letting the evil world and it’s evil associates control too much of our time and our actions. We talk a good talk, but don’t walk a good walk. 

That’s why the unbeliever looks at us askance, with a knowing smirk on their faces. They know that many of us are just a bunch of ole hypocrites, like the scribes and Pharisees of bygone days. That’s why Jesus declares so definitely in our Bit: ‘For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case (by no means) enter the kingdom of heaven.’ 

What a bam bam my people! Imagine that nuh; the most righteous, or supposedly righteous people of Jesus time could not get into heaven. And I know that we’ve used this scripture as our Bit fairly recently, but the Lord just put it on my heart to do it again today, possibly because He knows that we need the warning badly. So don’t get vex with the messenger. (smile) 

Now listen to the scholar’s explanation, once again. ‘5:20. Because of the necessity of righteousness as a requirement to enter heaven, Jesus then declares that except their righteousness should exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees they could not enter heaven. 

The significance of this is seen in the fact that the Jews of Jesus’ day considered these people to be the most religious in all Israel. However, their religion was largely an outward show of self-righteousness. In communicating the depth of His message, Jesus used a series of contrasts between the outward behaviour demanded by the law and the inner attitude of the heart desired by God. 

Here we discover the practical application of genuine Christian character to true spiritual living. Here we see the gospel in action.

                 Law                                                                  Spirit

            No murder                                                          No anger

            No adultery                                                         No lust

            No divorce                                                          Commitment

            No oath-taking                                                 Speak the                                                                                                          truth

            No retaliation                                                   Forgiveness

            Hatred for your enemy                                  LOVE for                                                                                                        your enemy 

  (tradition allowed it)                                            (commanded)

And there you have it friends! As Christians we need to come up higher in the spiritual realm than in the law of the world, if we are to be sincere believers. And I’m pleading with us today to stop giving Christ a bad name with our hypocritical behaviour. If we can’t live up to what He expects of us, then let’s stop talking the high talk we talk, and walk whatever low walk we can. Let’s not talk more than we can do. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings, blessings that the Lord has specially prepared for us who sincerely try to do His will. As one now: ‘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!’ 

Oh friends, doesn’t it make you feel bad when you enjoy all those heavenly blessings and don’t at least try to reciprocate as best we can? It ought to. Much LOVE!

…righteousness is simply…the LOVE of Jesus…in action

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 February 2018 Matthew 5:20.

Matthew 5:20.   For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case (by no means) enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Oh friends, out there is like a true winter wonderland! Everything is as white as ever, for as far as you can see. And the white stuff has begun coming down again, at least in my area. Chuh! 

But that’s the Lord’s will. There isn’t anything we can really do about it. It’s winter, and that’s what happens in winter. We’ve just been lucky over the last few years not to see so much snow, so early in the season. 

But remember, anything God brings us to, He will bring us through. So if you have to go out today, please be careful, because that white stuff, though it may look beautiful on the ground, like the enemy it can be very deceiving and dangerous. 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Listen to this first one. ‘When writing the story of your life, don’t let anyone else hold the pen.’ And why would you want to do that eh? It’s your life. You have to control it. 

Now check this out. ‘All the days that you wake up, you got one job, and that’s to get better every single day.’ And that’s oh so true, especially for a Christian. We need to aspire to grow in maturity and Christ-likeness every day that we draw breath. 

That leads us to: ‘Clear your mind of can’t!’ Wonderful advice! For as a believer in Jesus Christ, ‘can’t’ is not supposed to be in our vocabulary, since ALL things are possible with God, and we are God’s chosen people! 

And here’s an interesting one. ‘If you wanna fly, you got to give up the useless stuff that weighs you down.’ Is that ever so true friends! You can’t fly, or prosper, or take off, or rise up if you are being weighed down by useless and unnecessary stuff. 

Note how they carefully pack airplanes and ships for balance, and consider how much stuff is placed in them, otherwise they won’t be able to lift off the ground or sail. The same goes for people, improperly placed and unnecessary baggage will hold us back. 

And this last quote says: ‘If you do not go after what you want, you will never have it. If you do not ask, the answer will always be NO. If you do not step forward, you will always be in the same place.’ 

And that is certainly true, but for believers a serious proviso has to be added to it: All we do, must be done under the will of God, His leading, and in His awesome timing! If not, our seeking will be to no avail; we’ll never truly fly, or write a good life story. And I do hope those quotes give us something to ponder this snowy Saturday morning, as we laze around the house. (smile) 

And we have a very interesting Bit today; memorable words of Jesus, as He talks about the law. ‘For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case (by no means) enter into the kingdom of heaven.’ 

Wow mih people! Imagine that nuh! And those people were supposed to be the most religious in their day, but Jesus lambasted them right, left and centre for their hypocritical behaviour. 

Hear how the scholars explain it. ‘5:20. Because of the necessity of righteousness as a requirement to enter heaven, Jesus then declares that except their righteousness should exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees they could not enter heaven. 

The significance of this is seen in the fact that the Jews of Jesus’ day considered those people to be the most religious in all Israel. However, their religion was largely an outward show of self-righteousness. 

In communicating the depth of His message, Jesus used a series of contrasts between the outward behaviour demanded by the law and the inner attitude of the heart desired by God. Here we discover the practical application of genuine Christian character to true spiritual living. Here we see the gospel in action.                                  

              Law                                           Spirit                         

             No Murder                               No anger

              No adultery                            No lust

              No divorce                               Commitment

              No oath-taking                      Speak the truth

              No retaliation                        Forgiveness

              Hatred for your enemy       LOVE for your enemy                  

             (tradition allowed it)                  (commanded)

Ah mih people, yuh see the basic difference between the laws of man and those of God. Our God expects us to come up to a higher standard than that of the basic law. Just living by the law is not good enough. And the scribes and Pharisees didn’t even truly live by the law that they propagated. 

Unfortunately, so do a lot of us supposed Christians in these end times. Some of us put on a great outward show, talk a good talk, but behind closed doors it’s an entirely different story.

But please remember Jesus’ words; unless we are more righteous than the religious leaders of His day, we won’t enter heaven. Now, that’s something of immeasurable value and importance for us to ponder this Saturday morning. Much LOVE!

…unless you walk the walk…in God’s eyes…where it really matters…talking the talk is useless…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 July 2017 Psalm 86:11.

Psalm 86:11.   Teach me thy way, O Lord; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart (give me singleness of purpose) to fear (have reverential awe for) thy name.

Aye mih people, this is an exceedingly good day to rejoice and be joyful! Why you ask? Well I’ll just give you two reasons. The first is that you haven’t seen your name in the obits this morning, (smile) that means you are alive and kicking. Glory to God! 

And the second is that we serve a great God who’s so kind and LOVING and generous to us to grant us salvation and eternal life when we believe in His Son, our Lord And Saviour Jesus Christ, and walk in His will. Consequently, we just can’t help but LOVE Him back with all our hearts, minds, bodies and souls. 

Now, I think those are two excellent reasons to rejoice. So let’s declare it nuh, in the words of the psalmist: ‘This is the day which the Lord hath made; we WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’ (Ps.118:24) 

Ah friends, we Christians are the most joyful people on planet earth! And to help us stay that way, here is some encouragement from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional, titled ‘My Walk.’ I believe I’ve shared it before, possibly a year ago, but these prayers never get old or stale and can be shared again and again. 

Please declare it with me. ‘O God, I’m inspired. For you have just impressed this truth into my mind. The most powerful force in the world is a positive idea in the mind of a believer who is walking in your will! I now reach forth my life and say; “God, put my life into the centre of your will.” Amen.’ 

Oh my faithful brethren, there isn’t a wiser move we can ever make in this ungodly and evil world than to put our life in the centre of God’s will! He is the Creator of this universe and all therein, the fountainhead of all power and energy, so with whom else should we align ourselves eh? NOBODY else…if we are wise! 

And what I LOVE about our heavenly Father is, not only does He desire us to come to Him in EACH and EVERY circumstance, but He also helps us to do so through the leading and guidance of His word. 

As Bruh David puts it in our Bit. ‘Teach me thy way, O Lord; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart (give me singleness of purpose) to fear (have reverential awe for) thy name.’ Yeh friends, without the Lord’s help, we cannot draw near to Him the way He desires. 

And I like what Bruh David says after our Bit. ‘I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify thy name for evermore. For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest (the depths of) hell.’ (Ps.86:12-13) And that is certainly the right response to the Lord’s LOVING-kindness and mercy! 

Oh supposed saints of God, the Lord has also bestowed great mercy on us, and taken us from the depths of hell by the death and resurrection of his Son, Jesus Christ, are we grateful and thankful, and praising and glorifying and exalting Him with all of our faculties? 

I certainly do hope so, otherwise we’d just be a bunch of ungrateful hypocrites like the overly religious, but heartless Pharisees in Jesus’ time. What did Jesus say to them? In Matthew 23 He thoroughly denounces them, and you can read it for yourselves, but now listen to this one verse 

‘Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cumin, and have omitted (neglected) the weightier matters of the law, judgement (justice), mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.’ (Matt.23:23) 

Ah friends, unfortunately a lot of us Christians do the same things nowadays; conveniently comply with the small matters, which include outward show, but neglect the more important precepts of God’s word and will. 

On a point of interest here, most of us don’t even tithe, for sadly it is not preached in many of our churches, but it is a most important aspect of God’s word. That’s why so many churches are going under for lack of financial support. Moses declared the law of the tithes to the Israelites in Deuteronomy 14:22-29. Please take a few minutes and read it sometime soon. 

In the meanwhile, listen to what the prophet Malachi declared on God’s behalf: ‘Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat (food) in mine house, and prove (test) me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing that there shall not be room enough to receive it.’ (Mal.3:10) 

Oh my brethren, God’s house cannot survive and do His work on stingy offerings. Remember the basic principle of God’s economy is you reap what you sow. So if we only sow a little, we’ll also reap a little. 

And I have to chuckle at the unintended direction this Bit has taken. But I guess that’s where the Lord wanted me to go. And now let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings in strong voice and heartfelt sincerity. 

‘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!’ 

Now let’s go out and bless others, including God’s church, with the prosperity that He’s bestowed on us. That’s biblical wisdom! Much LOVE!

…God’s largesse isn’t bestowed on us to store or hoard it… but to generously share with others…

P.S. Yes friends, it’s a li’l bit late and a li’l bit long….but still beautiful! (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 November 2016 Daniel 9:9.

Daniel 9:9.   To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him. 

Oh friends, doesn’t it feel good to be alive on this Tuesday morning? It certainly does, especially when we are members of that glorious body, the church of Jesus Christ! 

Wow! What a privilege and a blessing to be numbered amongst the brothers and sisters of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

Consequently, our attitude should be one of great appreciation and a burning desire to do the Lord’s will. In keeping with all that, then let us sincerely declare, as the psalmist did so long ago: ‘This is the day the Lord has made. We WILL rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24) 

Yes my brethren, though the day may look dark and bleak, we know for a fact that the light of Jesus is shining in our hearts, souls, bodies and minds, and therefore we have the wherewithal to go out into the evil world and make a positive difference on His behalf. 

And to boost, to bolster our faith and courage, to reaffirm our sense of purpose, let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra, with certainty and passion. As one now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. 

I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

Ah mih people, as I said earlier on, it’s sure good to be in league with Jesus and the heavenly father. How can we be beaten or discouraged when we are God’s beloved and the friend of Jesus eh? No way Jose! 

But we also need to remember that we have a part to play in the relationship; and our part is to share the LOVE of Jesus with others, so that they too can come to know Him, to receive His awesome offer of salvation and eternal life! 

And all God’s people declared a loud, sincere and appreciative: ‘All praise and glory be to the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit for taking us under their mighty wings and keeping us safe and warm, like babes in their mother’s arms!’ 

And in so doing friends, the Holy Trinity takes the interest of each believer and deals with them personally, helping them to walk the straight and narrow path that leads to God, while they spread the good news of Jesus’ wonderful gospel. 

Nothing could be better than that my brethren! And when we consider the glorious words of our Bit, we become even more appreciative of God’s LOVE for us, His greatest creation. ‘To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him.’ 

Oh what a wonderful God we serve and worship my fellow believers! No other Deity is willing to offer mercy and forgiveness to rebellious followers. That means the Lord must be strong and secure in His own Spirit. For only a very powerful and secure Being could afford to be so generous. And for that generosity, we offer a most heartfelt thanks! 

Now let’s continue looking at some scriptures that uphold the argument of our Bit. And we’ll begin with words from the prophet Joel, as he calls Israel to repentance and fasting. 

‘Therefore also now, saith the Lord, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and  with mourning: 

And rend (tear) your heart and not your garments, and turn (return) unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness (LOVING-kindness), and repenteth him of the evil (relents from doing harm).’ (Joel 2:12-13) 

And the scholars have an interesting commentary on those verses. ‘2:12-13. The customary way a Jew showed his grief was to tear his outer garment. This external sign could be meaningless. The tearing of the outer garment is useless, unless the heart is broken in repentance and contrition.’ 

And that still holds true up to these ungodly times my people. Outward show does not move God’s heart. That’s why He seeks our true motives by examining the state of our own hearts before answering our prayers. 

Now listen to the words of Bruh David from Psalm 86 – Teach me thy way, O Lord. ‘Rejoice the soul of thy servant: for unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul. For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive, and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.’ (Ps.86:4-5) 

And nobody knew God’s forgiveness and mercy better than Bruh David. Now let’s end with some more of his awesome words from Psalm 86. ‘I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify thy name for evermore. For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest (the depths of) hell. 

O God, the proud are risen against me, and the assemblies of violent men (mobs) have sought after my soul; and have not set thee before them. But thou, O Lord, art a God of compassion, and gracious, long-suffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth. 

O turn unto me, and have mercy upon me; give thy strength unto thy servant, and save the son of thine handmaid. Show me a token (a sign) for good: that they which hate me may see it, and be ashamed: because thou, Lord, hast helped me, and comforted me.’ (Ps.86:12-17) 

Oh friends, definitely a great prayer on which to begin our day! Now let’s go out there feeling helped and comforted by our God and do His wondrous will for our lives. Much LOVE!

…with our wonderful God…mercy and forgiveness are possible…even though rebellion fills our hearts…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 November 2016 Ecclesiastes 5:1.

Ecclesiastes 5:1.    Keep thy foot (walk prudently) when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear (draw near to hear, rather) than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil.’

Awright friends, it’s Monday, so what’s it going to be eh? Are we going to be grumpy and complain, or are we going to rise and shine with a good, joy-filled attitude, ready and eager to go out and face this new workweek? The choice is up to us, but I do hope that as true believers in Jesus Christ we would adopt the latter option, for it is the more Christ-like one. 

However, I know that all of us are human, filled with human frailties, so it’s not every Monday morning  we’ll be filled with energy and enthusiasm to take the bull by the horns and wrestle him to the ground. (smile) 

That’s why we have an antidote for such days. It’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. It gets us all fired up so we can meet the enemy head on and defeat him. 

So let’s sing out in full, harmonious and melodic voice 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!’ 

Yes mih breddren, except for a few hoarse voices, that was a decent rendition. Our choirmaster, Jesus, had an amused twinkle in His eyes as He guided us with His baton. And once Jesus is happy with us, then all’s right with the world! (smile) 

So now that we’ve jump started our engines, let’s keep them running at high speed, keep the pedal to the metal, so to speak, and just go out there in a good frame of mind and do excellent work for Jesus, for that’s what He expects of us. 

And I do hope, for our sakes, we kept the wisdom of our Bit yesterday: ‘Keep thy foot (walk prudently) when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear (draw near to hear, rather) than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil.’ What awesome words of wisdom my fellow believers! 

And here’s how the Preacher ended that passage. ‘Suffer not (do not let) thy mouth to cause thy flesh to sin; neither say thou before the angel (messenger) that it was an error, wherefore should God be angry at thy voice (excuse) and destroy the work of thy hands? For in the multitude of dreams and many words there are also divers vanities (futility abounds): but fear thou God.’ (Eccl.5:6-7) 

Ah mih people, more wonderful words of wisdom! Yuh know, if we’d just follow the first 7 verses of that chapter, we’d be almost perfect! We can start by walking prudently, drawing near to hear, rather than that to expatiate, not give the sacrifice of fools, thinking that we’re not evil. That’s an awesome beginning! 

As Samuel admonished Saul when he disobeyed God’s order to fully destroy the Amalekites. ‘And Samuel said, Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft (divination), and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.’ (1 Sam.15:22-23)  

Yes friends, obedience to God’s word is the zenith of wisdom! And the scholars tell us, re those verses: ‘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).’ 

And that’s gospel truth! Why do you think the Lord checks our hearts instead of just simply accepting our outward show eh? Because He knows that the real you is on the inside, and it doesn’t necessarily match with what you are showing on the outside. Many of us today, are just like the Pharisees in Jesus’ time; put on a great religious outward show, but are empty and evil inside. 

Now let’s continue looking at those 7 verses at the start of chapter 5. The 2nd verse warns us not be rash with our mouths and make hasty statements to God; to let our words be few. Oh friends, what a godsend it would be to this world, if most of us would stop talking as much as we do! And that lines up nicely with the wisdom of verse 3; ‘a fool’s voice is known by multitude of words.’  

And we’ll end with the best advice; don’t make a promise to God and not keep it, because He doesn’t take pleasure in broken promises. It is better not to promise, than promise and not pay. And as I said yesterday, that also pertains to our dealings with fellow human beings. 

So let’s keep that in mind as we go out to labour today nuh, for it will certainly stand us in good stead, both with God and man. Much LOVE!

…it’s time Christians learn to do less talking and more listening…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 April 2016 James 1:25

James 1:25.    But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed (in what he does).

Oh my fellow believers in Christ, it’s Sunday! Glory Hallelujah! What a joy it is to be able to get up and go out to church and worship with other believers! 

How awesome it is to get together and praise and celebrate the goodness and LOVING-kindness of our wonderful Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Receiving in return His unbeatable strength, unsurpassed wisdom, unconditional LOVE, ever-faithful care and heart-felt compassion! Glory Be! 

Oh friends, how I wish the majority of us would feel like that on Sunday mornings. Hn! The sad reality though is that too many of us force ourselves to get up and go to church because it’s expected of us; just like work on a Monday morning. There’s no joy in our spirits like if we were going to a party. 

But friends, it is a party we’re going to! Isn’t there singing and dancing, and praising and giving thanks? There surely is! It’s not just a mournful, dirge-like experience that we’re forced to live through. So why, for so many of us, going to church is like pulling teeth eh? 

We ought to be happy and joyous, celebrating the occasion to be able to get together freely in public to glorify our Creator. Many of our fellow believers around the world don’t have that privilege. They have to hide and meet in secret, in out of the way places to have church. And in many places they are persecuted for simply believing in Jesus! That means we have the best of all worlds, but simply don’t appreciate it. 

Anyway, enough of my ranting, (smile) listen to this excerpt from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. As soon as I read it, I knew that it would be most appropriate for this glorious Sunday morning. 

It’s titled ‘The Secret,’ and it says: ‘I couldn’t help but watch her As we sat in the service together Last Sunday morning… Her white hair so neatly coiffured Her hands resting on her open Bible Her smile so beautifully tranquil. When the hymn was announced She sang with a glowing smile. Occasionally during the message She nodded her head in assent. 

(O Lord, what peace she portrays.) After the service I spoke to her: “You are an inspiration, my dear. I hope I may sit with you again.” She thanked me profusely. Then she added with shining joy “Isn’t it wonderful to know Jesus? I mean – really KNOW Him!” In that instant, dear God I knew the secret of her radiance.’ 

Oh precious people of Jesus, that is how we ought to be, and can be if we’d only invest some more time and energy in truly getting to KNOW our amazing, magnificent and magnanimous God! And we can only do that by seriously reading His Word, sincerely talking to Him in prayer and joyfully fellowshipping with other believers. 

And by the way, the promise attached to that poem is ‘Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.’ (Phil. 3:8 NL.V) 

Oh what indisputable truth that is my brethren! There is nothing that’s worth more in this mish-mash world than truly KNOWING Jesus! For He is indeed the Be All and the End All of our world; the First and the Last; the Alpha and Omega! Oh praise His Holy Name my people!  

That brings us to our Bit: ‘But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed (in what he does).’ More truth of enormous proportions my brethren! 

And we’ll continue looking at the references that the scholars gave re ‘the perfect law of liberty.’ We saw what Jesus had to say about His coming to fulfill the law not destroy it. (Matt.5:17) Now listen to Bruh Paul, as he talks about zeal but no righteousness. 

‘Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record (witness) that they have a zeal of (for) God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.’ (Acts 10:1-4) 

And the scholars explain that last verse thus: ‘10:4. Christ is the end of the law: Israel mistook the purpose of the law. The law pointed to the righteousness that is attainable only by belief in Christ. Israel also mistook the scope of the law. The righteousness to which it pointed was universally available to all who responded to God’s revelation of Himself through the law. 

But by Paul’s time many had substituted works for faith. Rather than seeking redemption in God’s mercy, they pinned their hopes on their own religious achievement.’ 

And unfortunately many of us are doing the same thing today my people. We are concentrating too much on our religious works and achievements, and not enough on the righteousness that is necessary, and can be attained from a sincere and purposeful union with Christ. 

Ah friends, many of us are being led astray by the religiosity of the church; the concentration on man-made rules and regulations, the many do’s and don’ts that have become institutionalized down through the ages. It’s time for us to be free from the bondage of traditional church law and return to what is truly important, the spiritual acumen that Jesus died for us to have; the true inner faithfulness and righteousness, not merely the outward show to look good in public. 

Now I hope that this message makes sense, but as I always say, we Christians are bright enough to pick sense from nonsense. (smile) And if the message does nothing else, I hope that it puts a joy in our hearts, minds, bodies and spirits to get up and go to church this Sunday morning, for that is indeed the wisdom of the ages my fellow believers! Much LOVE!

…oh the true joy of really knowing Jesus…nothing to it can compare…

 

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