Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 October 2020 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.

Oh friends, it’s so good to finally awaken to a li’l sunshine after all the wet, dreary mornings of this past week! I believe this is the first time all week, although some of those days have eventually morphed into sunshiny ones. And just for your info, yesterday the sunshine won the victory! Glory be! It turned into a warm and windy day. So warm that I couldn’t sit on my porch in my shirtsleeves in the afternoon for very long because the sun was actually burning me. (smile) 

Imagine that nuh, in late October, in these northern climes. I guess it’s what we’d call a true Indian summer’s day. But the rain did come back late in the evening, and the dark clouds are now tussling out there with the sunshine for superiority, so it’s another watch and wait and see, just like we ought to be doing with our faith in Almighty God. (smile) But enough with the weather scene, let’s see what quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And it seems like Anselm was on a positive affirmation kick this past week, (smile) because every quote begins with the words: ‘Positive affirmation you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are,’ which is then followed by the positive affirmation. So we’re not going to repeat the first part, just the affirmation itself. And just as a gentle reminder, you are an awesome being if you are a follower of Christ Jesus, meaning that He is in you, and you are in Him! Glory Hallelujah! 

And the first positive affirmation of your awesomeness is: ‘I’m in control of how I react to others.’ Now that should be a very true statement, especially if we’re followers of Christ, because Christ was always in control of His reaction to others, and we need to follow His example. Look at how the Pharisees and other groups mocked and jeered and harassed and finally killed Him. But you never heard Him react with the same venom that they hurled at Him. And what were some of His dying words on that old, rugged cross? ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.’ (Luke 23:34) 

And these words from the website Gotquestions.org, provide an interesting explanation of that particular situation.‘Jesus looked down from the cross upon a scene that must have been distressing to Him. The Roman soldiers were gambling for His clothing (John 19:23-24); the criminals on the crosses to either side of Him were reviling Him (Matt. 27:44); the religious leaders were mocking Him (Matt. 27:41-43); and the crowd was blaspheming Him (Matt. 27:39). 

Surrounded by this most unworthy lot, Jesus prayed for them. “Father, forgive them” is a prayer of unmatched mercy and LOVE. It is important to note that Jesus’ prayer, “Father, forgive them,” does not mean that everyone was forgiven, unilaterally, without repentance and faith. It does mean that Jesus was willing to forgive them —forgiveness was, in fact, the reason He was on the cross. The words “Father, forgive them” show the merciful heart of God.’ 

Are our hearts as merciful, do we show that forgiving and graceful attitude? That brings us to the next positive affirmation. ‘I’m courageous and stand up for myself.’ Yes, we ought to be courageous and stand up for ourselves. But again friends, we can only do so much on our own. We need Jesus as our backer, our titanic force that stands beside us and victoriously confronts all who come against us. What did Jesus say? ‘I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:5) 

And that’s the gospel truth my brethren! Without Jesus, there’s not a whole lot we can do successfully. Remember too, the Lord’s admonition to Joshua when He made him leader of the Israelites after Moses’ death. Having told him that only through meditating constantly on His word, could he be prosperous and have success, (Josh. 1:8) He followed it up with: ‘Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.’ (Josh. 1:9) 

Yes friends, we can stand up strongest and be the most courageous when Jesus is an integral part of our lives. And along with that comes this next positive affirmation: ‘I choose peace.’ Oh Mama Mia people! That’s a glorious truth! For when we are imbued with the spirit of Christ, peace becomes a natural by-product. Yeah! And the peace we find in Christ is not only awesome but also incredible, and it’s a kind of peace that we can’t find anywhere else. Wow! Here how Jesus characterizes it nuh. ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ (John 14:26) 

Ah mih people, when the peace of Christ reigns in us, we’re neither troubled nor afraid, we can go through all sorts of troubles, like we doing right now, and yet still be at peace, because Christ’s peace is one that passes all understanding, all human reasoning. It’s a divine peace. And you know what that brings with it? This positive affirmation: ‘I deserve to have joy in my life.’ Yes precious people, joy is the fulfillment of Christ’s promise in our lives. Remember His immortal words? ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10b) 

Oh my fellow saints of Christ, having life and having it more abundantly means enjoying our earthly life, hard though it may be at times, and not waiting until we get to heaven to enjoy it. What’s the purpose of Christ sacrificing Himself for us eh, and reconciling us to the Father, if we don’t enjoy that bountiful blessing down here? And remember too these marvellous words: ‘for the joy of the Lord is your strength.’ (Neh. 8:10) That’s why the enemy is always seeking to steal our joy, cause he knows that without it we can be easily defeated. Like Samson when Delilah cut off his locks became weak, so we become weak when we lose the joy of the Lord. 

And all of the above leads us to this last positive affirmation: ‘I am worthy of LOVE.’ And isn’t that the most glorious, awesome, indisputable truth? It surely is! As sons and daughters of God, heirs of God with Jesus, how can we not be worthy of God’s greatest attribute, LOVE, eh? Remember the main reason Jesus gave for coming to earth to save us? ‘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.’ (John 3:16) 

Yeh mih bredrin! It’s LOVE that moved God’s heart toward us while we were still sinners, and it’s LOVE that makes the world go round, and it’s LOVE that we don’t have enough of in this current world, why our society is in such shambles and steadily going down into the mire of hell. So let’s perk up, be courageous and stand up, for and with Christ, and show LOVE, for the devil cannot defeat us when we’re joyful and strong in Jesus. Much LOVE!

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 October 2020 John 15:5b.

John 15:5b.      …​for without me ye can do nothing.

Well a good Saturday morning to you my Scrip-Bit friends and family, wherever you are! I know that by the time some of you get this it will already be afternoon, but we hope that you’ve had a fine morning and will be having and even better afternoon. (smile) Yes, we wish nothing but peace, LOVE, joy and prosperity for us all this beautiful fall morning, when all the multi-coloured leaves are bathing in the glorious sunshine of our Creator, and thus exhibiting a cornucopia, an abundance of beautiful eye-pleasing, heart-warming colour. (smile) 

Anyway it’s Saturday, so let’s get on with our Saturday task; that of checking out the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And here’s the first one: ‘Positive affirmation: you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are. I am smart enough to make my own decisions.’ Now that’s certainly a situation that can only lead to confusion, especially if you’re a true believer in Christ Jesus. 

Yes, we ought always to positively affirm our worth and wisdom, but in Christ Jesus, not in ourselves. For remember His immortal words re our earthly abilities. ‘Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:4-5) 

Yuh see that last phrase friends: ‘for without me ye can do nothing.’ Well that’s the living, daylight truth! Without Jesus we can do very little, but with Him in us, and we in him, we can move mountains, anything’s possible, that’s when we become truly awesome! 

And this next quote leads us to delve deeper into our association with Jesus. ‘If you see that some aspect of your society is bad, and you want to improve it, there is only one way to do so: you have to improve people. And in order to improve people, you begin with only ONE thing: you can become better yourself.’ 

Ah friends, bettering oneself is what Jesus majors in! The quote itself contains much truth, to improve anyone or anything, we ought to begin with ourselves. Improvement ALWAYS begins with us! But who has the best improvement plan eh? JESUS! Yes mih people, you can’t beat Jesus’ plan for improving souls and selves, because He takes you at whatever state or level you are at and transforms you into a brand new person! 

Wow! Hear how Bruh Paul puts it to the church at Corinth nuh: ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (creation): old things are passed away; behold all things are become new.’ (2 Cor. 5:17) Yes mih bredrin, when you become a follower of Christ, your old sinful life is discarded, thrown away, and Christ offers you a brand new start which certainly improves the standard of life that you had before. 

And that’s exactly what’s wrong with our current society; not enough people have thrown away their old lifestyles and taken up the new one that Jesus offers, no wonder our world is in such ungodly turmoil, featuring abundant strife and heart-breaking calamity. That only shows us the error in our first quote, that we’re not smart enough to make our own decisions. (smile) 

But having said all of that, this next quote further defines our awesomeness in Christ. ‘Not everyone will be happy when you begin to better yourself. Those who are for you will not just celebrate your triumphs, but they will also pray with you through your tribulations.’ Oh my, oh my! What words of indisputable truth! 

Unfortunately, when we try to better ourselves, be it in Jesus or any other way, not everybody will be pleased, for one reason or another. But that’s just the way life is. Some people are never pleased to see others trying to improve. However, those who are pleased with your improvement decision will go to any lengths to help you, even standing strong with you through the trials and tribulations we all encounter when we decide to improve. 

And there again, that’s what you gain when you become a follower of Jesus; a whole cloud of witnesses to help you work through that improvement! You’re never alone when your Lord and Saviour is Jesus Christ. Even in the most difficult times, He is there with you, walking alongside, and ofttimes He also encourages a living friend to walk with you through it all too. Sorry, that should be a living human being, because the three parts of our Deity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – are ALL living beings. 

That brings us to our last quote. ‘Your past is not a reflection of your future.’ And is that ever so true, especially when you become a follower of Christ! Remember we said that you become a new creation when Christ comes into your life and all the old things are thrown away? That means your past doesn’t have to affect your future anymore, because Jesus will give you a brand new life with a brand new future! Glory be! Regardless of how evil or sinful or poor or sick your old life was, a new life with Jesus washes all of that away, cleanses you and makes you whole. 

And if you don’t believe me, then listen to this Great Invitation from Jesus Himself nuh. ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt. 11:28-30) 

Mama Yo! There’s no better invitation to be found in all the world my people! And though others might offer all sort of stuff, ONLY Jesus has the true power to transform, to improve lives. We can’t even do much on our own. So please don’t listen to any falsehood or false doctrines from other false teachers. If you truly want to improve your life, in some particular area, or in all areas, the ONLY ONE to turn to is JESUS, because He holds ALL the answers to ALL the questions of life, even the very breath of life itself! Much LOVE!

…the only sensible way to live this earthly life…is with Jesus as your Lord and Saviour… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 June 2015 Psalm 103:8‏‏

Psalm 103:8.  The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous (abounding) in mercy (LOVING-kindness).

Aye Friends, can you believe that it’s already the last day of June, and we haven’t seen a true summer’s day as yet! Hn! I don’t know if that augurs well for the supposed summer months, for since the summer solstice ten days ago we’ve had mostly cool, cloudy wet and windy days.

But as I keep saying, we can’t worry about the state of the universe because that’s God’s domain, and He does whatever He sees fit. We just have to believe that He won’t do anything to harm us, and will eventually work everything out for our good. (Rom.8:28) 

But here is something that we can get our heads around; a quote by Joshua Loth Liebman (1907-1948), the American rabbi and best-selling author. Rabbi Liebman was best known for His book ‘Peace of Mind.’

And in this quote, he says: ‘Believe and remember this: every saint and every sinner affects those whom he will never see, because his words and deeds stamp themselves upon the soft clay of human nature everywhere.’

And that’s gospel truth friends, for when we consider the ripple effect of our words and actions, they can affect millions of people whom we’ll never know or see. That’s why we have to consider seriously and sincerely the words and actions that we say and do, for if they are negative, they can cause lots of negativity all down the line to those who hear and see them.

Unknown to us, our words and actions will cause a lot of grief and heartache if they are not of godly encouragement and positive affirmation. We might see the reaction in a few people close to us, but generally speaking, we’ll never know the multitude that are affected by our negativity or positivity, as one person, or one institution passes it on to another, until it becomes a widely accepted and /or recognized saying or action.

And it’s exactly that far and wide kind of positive and godly ripple effect that I hope our Scrip-Bit has; where one person tells another about it and it keeps going until it is spread to all the nations of the world like Jesus commissioned His disciples to do. (Matt.28:19)

Yeh Friends, it’s ever so important that we watch what we say and do, especially in these times of instant communication, where some bit of information can go around the world almost instantaneously. And people are so insecure and gullible nowadays that they tend to believe almost anything they see on the social media.

That is helping in no uncertain terms to turn people, especially the young generation away from God. But fortunately my brethren, the social media can also be a two way street where we use it to bring people to God. There has never been another generation in man’s history where communication has been so quick and so accessible. Please let’s use it to benefit God’s work and not Lucifer’s.

That brings us to our wonderful and glorious Bit; a fact that we desperately need to communicate to people around the world. ‘The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous (abounding) in mercy (LOVING-kindness).’

Oh Friends, I’m sure if more people knew about those most blessed attributes of our God, they would be more inclined to turn to Him and accept His free gift of grace and mercy that leads to salvation and eternal life.

The problem, to a certain extent, is that they are mostly hearing and seeing the negative messages of the world instead of the positive declarations of Christ.

And it’s our job, through the Great Commission to bring it to them, for they can’t believe and/or accept what they have not seen or heard. So please, let’s all do our best to spread the good news of Christ’s gospel, for it is our bounden duty.

Now let’s look at a couple passages of scripture which corroborate our Bit. And we’ll begin with this strange action of Jonah’s after he had preached to Nineveh and they had repented of their evil ways and the Lord had forgiven them.

The Good Book describes it thus: ‘But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry. And he prayed unto the Lord, and said, I pray thee, O Lord, was this not my saying (what I said), when I was yet in my country?

 Therefore I fled before (previously) unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness (LOVING-kindness), and repentest thee of the evil (one who relents from doing harm). Therefore now, O Lord, take, I beseech thee, my life from me; for it is better for me to die than to live.’ (Jon.4:1-3)

Oh my brethren, it has always been difficult for me to understand Jonah’s anger at the Lord’s pardoning of Nineveh until now that I’ve read a plausible explanation from the scholars. ‘4:1-4. Displeased…exceedingly and very angry: Jonah maintains a false Jewish nationalism and hatred of all non-Jews, especially Assyrians.’

Ah Friends, what a waste of time, energy and a good life eh! Unfortunately though, many of us supposed Christians still feel like Jonah these days; we feel and exhibit an anger that is not necessary and totally contrary to God’s will.

In a true believer, there should be no constant or consistent anger. For as Bruh Paul so wisely advised the Ephesians. ‘Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath. Neither give place (an opportunity) to the devil.’ (Eph.4:26-27)

And that’s wisdom in spades my brethren! We ought not to go to bed angry because that negative atmosphere will persist in our sleep and cause us to wake up angry and most likely do more negative stuff. And right there we give great opportunity to Beelzebub to infiltrate our souls and spirits, which isn’t very wise.

And we’ll end with some more wise words, this time from our other marvellous brother, Bruh David, from Psalm 86 – Teach my thy way, O Lord. Here He unabashedly declares: ‘For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy (LOVING-kindness) unto all them that call upon thee…. But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, long-suffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth.’ (Ps.86:5,15)

Oh what words of absolute truth my people! Therefore, let’s take hold of them and run with them nuh, so that we too might be encouraged, uplifted and consequently, eagerly do the work that God has commissioned us to do, instead of having a forced or halfhearted attitude towards it. Friends, please remember that it’s all for our benefit, not for God’s! Much LOVE!

…living for God is easy…when we wisely recognize and accept …His plentiful mercy and grace…