Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 June 2020 1 Samuel 16:7b.

1 Samuel 16:7b.     ​for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.
 

Monday, oh Monday…thou day of woe! Poor Monday, it’s been hated, resented and cursed down through the ages for something it has no control over; being the first day of our work week. But yuh know what, any other day, a day by any other name, which hailed the beginning of five days of back breaking labour (smile) would have been met with the same amount of disparagement and scorn that’s been heaped on Monday. Yeh friends, anything that disturbs our peaceful repose is disliked by our soft, lazy, think we’re entitled and inequitable society. 

No doubt many of us are glad that we don’t have to go to work in these dangerous and treacherous times, but then too, we won’t enjoy the fruits of our labour if we don’t labour. Remember Cousin Sol’s words of infinite wisdom: ‘Behold that which I have seen: it is good and comely (fitting) for one to eat and drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labour that he taketh under the sun (in which he toils) all the days of his life, which God giveth him: for it is his portion… this is the gift of God.’ (Eccl. 5:18; 19b) 

So to keep the motor of the 24-7 society continually running, as it needs must do in these modern times, somebody or bodies must go out and stoke it. We haven’t built a self-stoking engine yet. (smile) Even those fueled by batteries or electricity, have to be occasionally recharged. And sadly, a lot of us who are being hailed as front-line heroes, are not seeing comparative rewards in our paycheques, but instead are losing valuable family time, as well as on the job benefits. Some of our leaders are being two-faced. But what to do eh, it’s the nature of the political beast? 

I’ll tell you what we can do: we can pray for them; pray to our great and mighty God for them, as well as ourselves. It’s what the Lord is waiting for us to do, for He can’t answer our prayers if we don’t pray them. So as one strong voice, with sincere hearts, let’s call out to Him right now nuh, invoking our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, asking for His mercy and grace in the worldwide problems that we’re now facing. 

‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive, and hopefully haven’t contracted the virus that’s causing havoc around our world. And our anxieties have been recently deepened because some restrictions have been lifted in the lockdown, so more of us are going out to work now without any guarantees of safety. 

Then to complicate matters Father, suddenly, and unexpectedly, just like the virus, worldwide strife and protests have also struck us in this sad time of pandemic, and we don’t have a clue how to handle either situation properly. Mass confusion is currently prevailing in our world, and we desperately need your help to solve both problems, as You are the ONLY One with the power and insight to successfully handle them. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction. 

Please show us how to successfully handle these scourges that are currently plaguing Your beautiful earth. Please help our leaders to wisely quell the strife and protests, and the scientists to find a positive solution, a sure antidote to the virus as quickly as possible. And for those who have already contracted the virus, or been injured in the strife, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. 

Father, please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

Oh my people, if enough of us, that means plenty of us, sincerely pray along those lines, as well as repent of our evil ways and do better, our heavenly Father will indeed keep His promise. He did it several times for Israel, so why won’t He do it for us too eh? But remember, the Lord doesn’t only listen to what comes out of our mouths, for like the Pharisees and other leaders of Jesus’ day, what we speak, often doesn’t truly reflect what’s in our hearts. 

That’s why the Lord said to Samuel when He sent him to anoint one of Jesse’s sons as the new king of Israel and the good-looking son Eliab stood before Him and Samuel figured he had to be the one. ‘Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused (rejected ) him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.’ (1 Sam. 16:7) 

Yes friends, until the Lord searches our hearts and sees true repentance and true willingness to change our evil ways, our societies will be forever troubled and in turmoil. Now the Lord saw our need and sacrificed His only Son Jesus Christ to help us, that whomsoever believed in Him would have everlasting life. So He’s done His part. The ball is now in our court. We need to accept Christ and receive His peace, joy and LOVE, and show the world that HE IS THE ANSWER…THE ONLY ANSWER…  Much LOVE!

…if the created is wise…he will turn to the Creator for help…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 May 2020 Lamentations 3:22.

Lamentations 3:22.    ​ It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.
 
As the tumbling tumbleweed tumbles; as the cycle of life cycles; so do we saints in Christ live in concert with our omnipotent Creator! Wow! What magnificent imagery! That’s why they say B.S. baffles brains! (smile) It’s Monday morning friends, and we’re alive and kicking, so regardless of what tragedies are happening in our world, let’s give much thanks and praise to the Almighty that we’re not too badly off, and most of us are fairly safe, have a roof over our heads, and are well-fed! 

Many others around our world are having it much rougher than us and they’re not complaining, so we shouldn’t either, although, unfortunately, that has recently become the prevalent nature of our privileged, entitled and irresponsible society. And the best way to live in concert with out Creator is by communing with Him through the medium of prayer. So let’s do that right now nuh, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, recently reworked for this pandemic time. As one, strong, humble, but confident voice, let’s come before His heavenly throne in sincere prayer. 

‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive, and hopefully haven’t contracted the virus that’s causing havoc around our world. Despite the crucial lockdown, those of us considered essential, still have go to work, and we’re somewhat fearful, because we have no idea, how, when and where the virus might strike. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction. 

Please show us how to successfully handle this scourge that’s plaguing the earth, and help the scientists to find a positive solution, a sure antidote to it as quickly as possible. And for those who have already contracted the virus, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them Father. Show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

Yes, precious people, I’m sure the Lord heard our prayer because I know that our hearts were quite sincere, for we are awfully anxious and scared of the somewhat unrelenting stranglehold that the Coronavirus currently has on our world. But please, let’s remember what we said above in our prayer, about repentant hearts. We need to show that in our behaviour, keep our promise, if we expect the Lord to keep His and heal our world. Remember Cousin Sol told us yesterday not to make promises, especially to God, and not keep them. (Eccl. 5:4-5) So let’s work sincerely and diligently on that repentance nuh. 

And to help us do that, hear are some encouraging words from the prophet Jeremiah when he was lamenting the sins of his people Israel, who were then going through a rough time for their sinful disobedience. It seems like everything and everybody was against them. And at one stage Jeremiah declared (steups!): ‘I am the man that hath seen affliction by the rod of his wrath. He hath led me, and brought me into (made me walk in) darkness, but not into light. Surely against me is he turned; he turneth his hand against me all the day…’ (Lam. 3:1-3) Then he goes on to tell of the many things Israel had suffered at the Lord’s hands. (Lam. 3: 4 13) 

And furthermore: ‘I was a derision (laughingstock) to all my people; and their (taunting) song all the day. He hath filled me with bitterness, he hath made me drunken with wormwood. He hath also broken my teeth with gravel stones, he hath covered me with ashes. And thou hast removed my soul far off from peace: I forgat prosperity (good). And I said, My strength and my hope is perished from the Lord: Remembering (remember) mine affliction and my misery; the wormwood and the gall (bitterness). My soul hath them still in remembrance, and is humbled within me (is bowed down).’ (Lam. 3:14-19) 

Ah friends, Israel was in real bad shape, like we are today, and I know a lot of us are lamenting over our many problems, many of which have befallen us because of our sinful and disobedient attitude towards God. But if we continue listening to Jeremiah we’ll discover that things are not as bad as they seem or can get. 

‘This I recall to mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.’ (Lam. 3:21-26) 

Oh my people, please, let’s do like Jeremiah and remember that our God is a great God nuh, compassionate and merciful as no one else. It is because of that compassion and mercy that we are not destroyed, as we deserve to be. And moreover, each new day, He brings new mercies and compassion to the table because of His overwhelming and unconditional LOVE for us. He is indeed a faithful God, and we need to be faithful too if we really want to see all the good things He has in store for us. 

And the scholars tell us that ‘real faith is more than inner belief, even more than whole-souled committal. It is a condition of the soul marked by such a stable character and attitude of total trust that the believer’s whole life is imbued with consistent, responsible service to God (cf. 1 Sam. 26:23; Ps. 37:3-6). From the biblical standpoint, true faith results in faithfulness in one’s life.’ 

Yes friends, faithfulness in this sinful word is not an easy row to hoe, but with the Lord’s help and our determination, we can certainly do much better than we’re currently doing. Much LOVE!

…blessed is the nation…whose God is the Lord… (Ps. 33:12)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 April 2020 Revelation 3:19.

Revelation 3:19.    ​As many as I LOVE, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
 

So we’ve rolled into ‘Holy Week’ where we see Jesus go through a rather intense and emotional time, knowing that the occasion He was born for, His essential task, was close at hand. He knew it would all lead to a setta ‘sufferation’ on our behalf, ending with His crucifixion on the old wooden cross on Calvary’s Hill on Good Friday. And it’s struck me as being somewhat symbolic that at the same time Jesus is going through His adversity, this year, we are also going through some of the roughest times we’ve ever experienced in the world, with this Covid-19 virus situation. 

We’re locked down, with our lives in serious jeopardy and essentially in limbo, keeping away from others, no work and no pay, the streets are for the most part empty of both humans and traffic, people are sick and dying, some can’t even get attention for illnesses because the Health System can’t handle it. Panic, anxiety and fear are rampant, and we can’t get any sure and true answers to when and where and how it will all end because no one really knows. It even seems like a more fearful and disastrous time worldwide, than during the two world wars we fought in the early part of the last century. 

At least then we knew our enemy and what weapons it would take to defeat Him, but in this time of ‘germ warfare’ which has hit us so unexpectedly, we have no real knowledge of it, even where it came from, much less a cure for it. And I’ve said all of that, just to ask this question: do we see the mysterious moving of the Father’s hand in it all? I think we should, because I firmly believe that this is a worldwide wake-up call for confession and repentance. And even if it’s not, then the wisest move we can make is still to turn back to God and confess our manifold sins and wickedness, for there’s no doubt that the current state of mankind is possibly at the most evil and sinful level it’s ever been. 

Please friends, let’s not fool ourselves into thinking that the omnipotent God, who still sits on His heavenly throne and still controls the world He created, will allow us to get away indefinitely without some kind of chastisement for our blatant disregard of His rules and regulations and foolish, futile attempts to remove Him from our society? Remember the Lord LOVES all whom He has created with a deep and burning, never-ending LOVE, and He doesn’t want to lose even ONE of His most valuable creations to the enemy. So if we step out of His will for too long, it’s only expected that He will try to correct us, to bring us back into line. 

This scripture tells the story of God’s discipline: ‘For consider him (Jesus) that endured such contradiction (hostility) of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds (become discouraged). Ye have not yet resisted unto blood (bloodshed), striving against sin. And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children (sons), My son, despise not thou the chastening (discipline) of the Lord, nor faint (be discouraged) when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord LOVETH he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?’ (Heb. 12:3-7) 

Unfortunately, in this soft and irresponsible world the answer to that question is too many sons are not chastened, and that’s partly why our world is in such a sinful mess. Remember Cousin Sol’s words of wisdom: ‘He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that LOVETH him chasteneth him betimes (promptly)’ (Prov.13:24) Yes friends, LOVE and discipline go together. And not sparing the rod doesn’t necessarily mean child abuse as so many of us preach today, then wonder why our children have turned out the way they are, and hence the behaviour in our society is less that satisfactory. 

So yes, I do believe it’s a warning, and a serious one at that. It could mean that the Lord is just tired with our sinful shenanigans, or that Christ is coming back sooner than we expect, or even both. Anyway friends, please, I implore us, let’s take this next scripture to heart nuh, these immortal words of Jesus to John in his vision of revelation. ‘As many as I LOVE, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.’ As always, Jesus puts it as plainly and simply as possible. So let’s take His wise advice and do that right now nuh, by coming to God in sincere prayer, declaring our Covid-19 Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

All together now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive, and hopefully haven’t contracted the virus that’s causing havoc around our world. Despite the crucial lockdown, those of us considered essential, still have go to work, and we’re somewhat fearful, because we have no idea, how, when and where the virus might strike. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. 

That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction. Please show us how to successfully handle this scourge that’s plaguing the earth, and help the scientists to find a positive solution, a sure antidote to it as quickly as possible. 

And for those who have already contracted the virus, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them Father. Show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

Now let’s hold true to that promise, for remember Cousin Sol says the worst thing we can ever do is to make a vow to God and not keep it. Better not to have made it at all. (Eccl. 5:4-5) Much LOVE!

…Jesus is standing at the door of our hearts knocking…please, please…let’s open them and let him in nuh…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 March 2020 Proverbs 13:12.

Proverbs 13:12.    ​Hope deferred maketh the heart sick; but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.
 
Arise people, it’s Monday, the start of another week of work, even for those of us who are working from home. Let’s not abuse the privilege and try to be just as diligent and excellent in our work habits as when we had to physically venture out into the evil world. Nothing much has changed; confusion, uncertainty and panic still abound, but more importantly, our great and wonderful God is still on His heavenly throne overseeing things! And in that everlasting fact, we can put our sincere hope, faith and trust, knowing that He will keep His promise and work everything out for our good eventually. But we still have to do our part in the partnership, and at this moment, that’s prayer. 

So right now, in this turbulent time, let’s come before the Lord and ask for His help, as we pray our Covid-19 Monday Morning Battle Hymn, in strong voice, with sincere hearts. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive, and hopefully haven’t contracted the virus that’s causing havoc around our world. Despite the crucial lockdown, those of us considered essential, still have go to work, and we’re somewhat fearful, because we have no idea, how, when and where the virus might strike. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction. Please show us how to successfully handle this scourge that’s plaguing the earth, and help the scientists to find a positive solution, a sure antidote to it as quickly as possible. 

And for those who have already contracted the virus, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them Father. Show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

Now we just have to do like Bruh David says: ‘Wait (in faith) on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait (in faith), I say, on the Lord.’ (Ps. 27:14) And when we have faithfully waited on the Lord, you know what will eventually happen? We will sing the song of praise of the redeemed, like Isaiah writes: ‘And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the Lord; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.’ (Is. 25:9) 

Oh friends, there is no better feeling than having waited faithfully, eagerly and expectantly for God’s promise, to be fulfilled in His time, and then having it come to pass. And all God’s children declared a loud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord! Bless His holy name; now and forever!’ And do we ever need to do that as often as possible, since He is indeed very worthy to be praised! Now hear these words of further encouragement from Cousin Sol: ‘Hope deferred maketh the heart sick; but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth friends! For as the scholars explain: ‘13:12. Hope deferred depresses, but its fulfillment revitalizes.’ That’s an indisputable fact! When our dreams and hopes don’t come true, we tend to fall into bouts  of depression. But when they come to pass…oh boy…the joy that they bring is overwhelming. That’s why friends, we need to do like Zechariah advises: ‘Turn you to the stronghold, ye prisoners of hope: even today do I declare that I will render (restore) double unto thee.’ (Zech. 9:12) And you know who is the stronghold He speaks of? Zion’s future King; Jesus Christ! 

Oh my people, our ONLY true help in this time of crisis is the Creator and Controller of our Universe, the Lord God Almighty, in conjunction with His Son, Jesus Christ, the name above all names, who redeemed us by His sacrificial death on the cross at Calvary, and His Holy Spirit, who works His miracles in our souls and spirits! So please, this Monday morning, in this time of pandemic, let’s not lose hope in our great God and His faithful promises. Instead, let’s ramp up our hope, and do like Bruh Paul wrote to the church at Rome: 

‘Let LOVE be without dissimulation (hypocrisy). Abhor that which is evil; cleave (cling) to that which is good. Be ye kindly affectioned (affectionate) one to another with brotherly LOVE; in honour preferring (giving preference to) one another; Not slothful in business (lagging in diligence); fervent (boiling over) in spirit; serving the Lord; Rejoicing in hope; patient (persevering) in tribulation; continuing instant (steadfastly) in prayer; Distributing to the necessity (needs) of saints; given to hospitality. Bless (speak well of) them which persecute you: bless and curse not. Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.’ (Rom. 12:9-15) 

And don’t tell me we can’t do those things friends, because they are all a part of basic Christianity, a part of the foundation, the example Jesus laid down for His church to follow! And believe me, we, the church of Christ, need to do them more than ever in these cruel and trying times, if we desire and expect to have any hope of survival. Much LOVE!

…and now abideth faith, hope, LOVE…but the greatest of these three is…LOVE… (1 Cor. 13:13)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 January 2020 1 John 5:14.

1 John 5:14.    ​And this is the confidence that we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us:
 
So it’s the first Monday of the new year, how are we going to greet it eh? How are we going to operate on this opening day of the first full work week of 2020? Are we going to be sour and miserable and tired like we’ve been for a lot of the year just past? I do hope that since most of us have resolved to walk closer with Jesus this year, that most of us will also adopt a better attitude, through regular fellowship and better rest programmes, so that we can bear plenty good fruit for Him. 

And yes, I know that we’ll have some backsliders every week, because that’s just the nature of the human animal. (smile) But we’ll always have a backup plan to lend strong support, namely our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. And I suspect that plenty of us will need it today since we’re still recuperating from the season’s celebrations. (smile) 

So as one strong and confident voice, let’s float our prayer up to heaven. ‘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 almost immediately, we feel the Holy Spirit moving within us to give us what we asked for. Wow! What an awesome God we serve and worship my people! And why are we so confident in our prayers eh? John explains it thus in his first epistle. ‘And this is the confidence that we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions we desired (asked) of him.’ (1 John 5:14-15) 

Mama Mia! What other faith has such a built in confidence builder eh? None. As the scholars explain: ‘5:14-15. Assurance of salvation (v.13) leads to confidence in petition. Effectual prayer is according to his will.’  Now that’s the fly in the ointment my faithful brethren: we have to ask for stuff that fall’s within God’s will. So we can’t afford to be too frivolous and ask for stuff that’s carnal minded. 

And John furthermore states in an earlier chapter, as he discusses LOVING one another, not merely in talk, but in deed and in truth. ‘And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure (persuade) our hearts before him. For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things. Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God. And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things which are pleasing in his sight.’ (1 John 3:19-22) 

And what does all of that mean? We’ll let the scholars explain it: ‘3:19. Cain (v. 12) was “of that wicked one”, believers are of the truth. And hereby: John seems to be saying that assurance of salvation comes in part as one reaches out actively in caring for others (preceding verses).’ Yes friends, believers ought to be involved in the truth, in faith as well as deeds. 

‘3:20. In light of John’s strict teaching above, he may have felt that some readers might begin to despair. He assures them that, although our feeble attempts to honour God may leave us feeling defeated inside, God is greater than our self-awareness (cf. 1 Cor. 4:4) and can justify us even when we would condemn ourselves. He sees not only our actions, which at times are thwarted or misguided, but also the motives and intentions behind them.’ And the intentions and motives of our hearts are ever so important in our faith walk my people, because that’s what God judges us by, not simply our outward actions. 

‘3:21-22. If our heart condemn us not: We have confidence toward God if our lives are in line with the standard of Christian living set forth above. John is not saying that whether a person is right or wrong is simply a matter of how he subjectively feels about himself. That is why John has given so many indicators and commands for Christians to take note of and assess themselves by. And one of the great results of a life lived in purity before God is a life where there is effective prayer. Right living is an important part of successful praying.’ 

And isn’t that the awesome truth my fellow believers! A successful prayer life cannot be had without a righteous daily life. And I think that’s a fitting note to end on today. So please, let’s sincerely ponder our prayer lives based on the above facts nuh, and try to come up higher this year of 2020, with the Lord’s help of course!  Much LOVE!

…confidence in God…comes from knowing His truth…and living according to His will…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 July 2018 Matthew 18:11.

Matthew 18:11.   For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.

And so friends, with God’s help, we’ve come to Thursday and are about to enjoy another awesome day in the life! Wow! Christians are so blessed eh, I can’t imagine what we’d do, or be like, without Almighty God in our lives! Let’s give Him some much deserved praise and thanks nuh people, for being such a wonderful Father, for giving us blessings, mercy, grace and forgiveness that we don’t truly deserve. 

Please pray with me: ‘Oh Father in heaven, we sincerely thank You for allowing us to see another day on planet earth. Life might sometimes be rough, causing our faith to waiver, and neither are we always obedient to Your will, but You made us and You still LOVE us despite our imperfections and disobedience. We thank You and praise your holy name for ALL that You are doing in our lives. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen!  

Yeh friends, without God in our lives, we’d be lost and gone astray like so many people out there, headed for eternal damnation and separation from Him. And as I keep reminding us, separation from Almighty God is the very worst thing that can happen to a human being, that’s why it’s ever so necessary to get involved with Jesus RIGHT NOW, for He is the ONLY way that we can connect with the Father. 

And as sincere disciples of Christ, His ears, hands, mouth and feet here on earth, we are expected to help bring those who are lost to Him. As He says in our Bit: ‘For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.’ Awright mih breddren, Jesus came to save such as you and I, who had gone astray, who had developed strong connections with the evil one, which was definitely not in our best interest. 

And Jesus continues: ‘How think ye? If a man have a hundred sheep, and if one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray?’ (Matt.18:12) Oh precious people, do you realize what that means? That if the only lost soul in the world was you or I, Jesus would still have done what He did; come to earth to die and save us! What a wonderful Lord and Saviour we have! 

And that’s not all, because Jesus continues: ‘And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray.’ (Matt.18:13) Wow mih breddren wow! Yuh see how important that lost sheep, that lost you and I are to Jesus? He rejoices over the lost that’s been found more than the many others who had not gone astray. 

No wonder Jesus declared: ‘I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just (upright) persons, which need no repentance.’ (Luke 15:7) Jesus also spoke the parables of the lost coin and the lost, prodigal son, showing just how important the lost is to His kingdom. (Luke 15:8-32) And He wraps it up in Matthew with this: ‘Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.’ (Matt.18:14) 

Oh people, oh people, yuh see it all stems from the Father! He doesn’t want to lose even one of His greatest creations to the fool Lucifer, that’s why He sent Jesus to save us. We are His very heartstrings! Whatever happens to us affects Him. But now that Jesus has gone back to heaven and is sitting at the Father’s right hand, interceding for us, it has now becomes our responsibility to look for those who are lost and help them become saved. 

The question is, are we shouldering that responsibility responsibly? And the answer is, I don’t think so. Too many people are turning away from God these days for us to be doing a responsible job. In fact, if we give them a chance, they’d toss God completely out of midst. What a foolish thing to even consider, much less do. 

But that’s how much sway Lucifer has over the world these days. And it’s up to you and I, as true believers to try and mitigate that evil hold, by living lives of good example and spreading God’s Word far and wide. We have the awesome capabilities to do that now, so there’s no excuse for the Word not to be broadcast all over the world. 

So let’s seriously ponder, think on, consider, our actions along those lines nuh, and do our best to come up higher, for we can ALL come up higher and thus bring more of the many lost to Christ. And He’s already given us all the tools to do that through the bestowing of our Thursday Blessings. Now let’s go home declaring them for all and sundry to hear, that they might receive inspiration to want those same blessings. 

In full voice with sincere hearts: ‘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!’ 

And since we were not granted such an abundance of blessings to hoard for ourselves, but to share with the less fortunate, let’s go out and do that now nuh, so the lost will have some good reason to come to Jesus. Much LOVE!

…sharing…caring…LOVING…that’s true Christianity in action…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 September 2016 Colossians 3:17.

Colossians 3:17.   And whatsoever  ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

Well friends, another apparently beautiful day has dawned in my neighbourhood, and for it we give much thanks! However, if the weather in your area isn’t so wonderful, then please don’t be overly concerned because the Son, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ is ALWAYS shining His brilliant and comforting light on and in us… Glory to God! 

That means less fear and worry in our lives as we experience each new day, remembering the reassurance of the Good Book. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7)  And that’s indisputable truth my believing brethren! 

Now, let’s further raise our spirits and our faith by declaring our Thursday Blessings in a strong voice, filled with enthusiasm and conviction, for remember that a blessing is not a blessing until it is spoken over someone. 

All together 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!’ 

Ah mih people, what a wonderful Deity we serve and worship! No other faith uplifts and comforts its believers like the Christian faith! 

And all God’s children gratefully declared a loud and sincere, ‘Thank You Lord! We truly LOVE You and praise Your Holy Name! Amen!’ 

Now to turn those words into reality, we need to follow the wise and most worthy advice of Bruh Paul to the Colossians, found in our Bit. ‘And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.’ 

Yes friends, the only way we can truly show our faithfulness to the Most High God Jehovah is by letting our words and actions reflect the character of Jesus with sincere thankfulness. And Bruh Paul wrote basically the same thing to the church at Corinth. 

‘Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Give none offense, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God. Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved.’ (1 Cor.10:31-33). 

Ah mih people, the basic reason behind ALL that we say and do, ought to be to glorify God in some form and fashion! Remember, that’s why He created us. And Peter adds his two cents worth (smile) as he talks about being good stewards of God’s grace. 

‘But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent charity (LOVE) among yourselves: for charity (LOVE) shall cover the multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging (grumbling). As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 

If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles (utterances) of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen’ (1 Pet.4:7-11) 

Oh how I wish that more of us supposed Christians would follow that sound advice. But as you see, it means giving up our pleasure and profit for others, and that’s still a rather difficult thing for many Christians to do, especially in these very ungodly and sinful times. 

And unfortunately the only way for us, and consequently Christ’s church to grow and mature, is by us steadfastly following the advice given above by both apostles. If we keep on allowing the enemy to divide and conquer us, to fill us with fear, self-loathing, or simply uninterested, lackadaisical behaviour, then we’ll always be at their mercy, and Christ’s church will continue to be weighed down with dissension and disunity, as it currently is. 

Obviously that’s not pleasing to the Holy Trinity, our Godhead. And if we’re not pleasing the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, then we’re not doing what we were created to do – as simple as that. Then we cannot expect to be blessed with all the good things and times that have been placed in store for us. 

That, however, doesn’t stop some of the more boldfaced and foolish of us from still expecting heavenly blessings, although they are living in the lusts of the flesh and not in the grace and guidance of the Holy Spirit. (smile) 

Anyway friends, the long and short of the story is that as true believers we need to make sure that our words and actions glorify God, by falling into line with the teachings of Jesus Christ and the leading and guidance of the Holy Spirit. That’s what is known as heavenly wisdom, wisdom for the ages! Much LOVE!

…obedience brings blessings…disobedience brings curses…it’s the individual’s choice…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 April 2016 Exodus 33:14

 Exodus 33:14.  And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.

Well hello there my beautiful Scrip-Bit family! How you all doing this wet and windy morning in the first week of April eh? I do hope that you all are doing fine, despite the problems that are hovering over you, for we are the beloved children of the Most High God Jehovah and are destined to do well, regardless of our circumstances. Glory Hallelujah! 

Yes friends, as God’s intimate family we have been promised a blessed life, filled with our heavenly Father’s grace, mercy, truth, care, compassion, forgiveness and abundance. So please let’s not allow our circumstances to rule us, let’s rise above them instead and live in the heavenly realm, through our eyes of faith, not worrying about our earthly condition. 

And here is some encouragement and advice from Gramps Schuller (Robert H. Schuller) for when we are traversing the fearful valley of the shadow of death, taken from his Hours of Power Devotional. 

He says: ‘Peace of mind comes to the person who feels the presence of God…. Nothing can stop the man who feels the presence of God in his life. Terror is like morning dew in a noonday sun. Fear is ice on summer seas. The tense, trembling, troubled heart becomes as placid and peaceful as water in an inland lake moments before the dawning of day…. 

Don’t trust the clouds – trust the sunshine. Don’t set your compass by the flash of lightning – set it by the stars. Trust the sun – don’t trust the shadows. Believe in your dreams – don’t believe in your despairing thoughts. Have faith in your faith – and doubt in your doubts. Trust in your hopes – never trust in your hurts.’ 

Ah mih breddren, what wonderful words of advice and encouragement! And I particularly like the positive aspect of the last few lines: ‘Believe in your dreams… have faith in your faith… trust in your hopes…’ 

Oh friends, when we sincerely and diligently do those three things, we have nothing to worry about, for we will then have the world by its tail, with the presence of God richly dwelling in us. Nothing can be more beautiful and peaceful than God’s presence in all our doings! 

And all God’s children declared a loud and grateful: ‘Thank You Father for Your wonderful and peaceful presence in our lives! We couldn’t face this evil world positively without Your amazing grace! We LOVE You and praise Your Holy Name! Amen!’ 

And today friends, we’re going to look at two instances of how God’s presence with us is ever so important. And we’ll begin with the passage from Exodus that includes our Bit, when Moses prays for God’s presence. 

‘And Moses said unto the Lord, See, thou sayest unto me, Bring up this people: and thou hast not let me know whom thou will send with me. Yet thou hast said, I know thee by name, and thou hast also found grace in my sight. Now therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, show me now thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight: and consider that this nation is thy people. 

And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest. And he said unto him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence. For wherein shall it be known here that I and thy people have found grace in thy sight? Is it not that thou goest with us? so shall we be separated, I and thy people, from all the people that are upon the face of the earth. 

And the Lord said unto Moses, I will do this thing also that thou hast spoken: for thou hast found grace in my sight, and I know thee by name.’ (Ex.33:12-17) 

Ah friends, Moses recognized the importance of God’s presence with them, if they were ever to traverse the wilderness safely then enter the Promised Land and successfully conquer it. And God recognized the validity of Moses’ argument and agreed to do as he asked. 

Note that Moses even told the Lord that if He wasn’t going to go with them, then He shouldn’t bother to send them up. Such was the importance of God’s presence. And so it is in all our lives my fellow brethren in Christ. If the Lord’s presence isn’t with us, then we’re in for an even rougher time than normal. 

And even before Moses, we have another example of how God’s presence, is, was, and will always be important to us. Listen to what happened to Cain after he killed his brother Abel. The Lord cursed Cain for his evil deed. 

‘When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength: a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth. And Cain said unto the Lord, My punishment is greater than I can bear. 

Behold thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass that every one that findeth me shall slay me. 

And the Lord said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the Lord set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him. And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod (lit. Wandering), on the east of Eden.’ (Gen.4:12-16) 

Ah mih people, yuh see what happens to us when we are shut out of the Lord’s presence? Nothing good comes of that friends. But even in his exile, the Lord showed grace and kindness to Cain, by setting a mark on him, that people wouldn’t kill him. 

And the scholars add this explanation. ‘4:16. This portrays the direction of fallen and unsaved humanity into exile from God, without hope in the world, “wandering aimlessly” about.’ 

Now that, my fellow believers in Christ, we cannot afford to let happen to us, otherwise crapaud smoke we pipe! So let’s continually keep seeking the Lord’s presence in our lives nuh, for that is a mark of eternal and everlasting wisdom! Much LOVE!

…to be in God’s presence continually…is the mark of a true believer…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 February 2016 Psalm 40:4‏‏

Psalm 40:4.   Blessed is that man that maketh the Lord his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.

And then it was Monday! Hn! Work calleth my people! I do hope that you all are ready to leave home at some ungodly hour in the morning to beat the never-ending traffic jams, the numerous accidents, most of them caused by speeding and foolish driving, plus the ever-escalating road rage, a natural consequence of the road congestion and our rather high stress levels.

Mama Yo! Bruh Paul would have been proud of that rather convoluted sentence. (smile). Thankfully I don’t have to be prepared for that sort of stuff right now. The only thing I need to be prepared for is to meet my Maker, and I just hope He’s not too anxious to meet me. (smile)

However, my beautiful brothers and sisters in Christ, fear not, for our Saviour has promised to guide and protect us, and to never leave us, once we don’t leave Him. And we know He is ever-faithful. But on the other hand, if we had done our homework yesterday -going to church, resting and relaxing, we would have been much better prepared for today.

Anyway, we do have a remedy for your unpreparedness, it’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. So let’s belt it out with great verve and vigour now, let’s put a dazzling, brilliant smile on our choirmaster’s face.


As one powerful and harmonious choir 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!’  


Now that was indeed a beautiful rendition my people! Jesus was smiling from ear to ear while strenuously working His conductor’s baton, as all of heaven rocked along! Glory to God!


As per yesterday’s activities: We went to the Harvest Service at St, Patrick’s in Mt. Pleasant…and was it ever a beautiful time although it lasted for three hours! It’s the first service of that length I’ve gone to and didn’t even notice the time. Glory Hallelujah!


The church was full; downstairs, upstairs and outside, with lots of inspiring singing and worship. And one thing I liked a lot is the way they involved the children in the celebration, doing readings, making offerings of first fruits etc.


The Dean of the Region preached a powerful message on giving, using several anecdotes to illustrate his point. This one about a pig and a cow touched me. Apparently the cow and pig were out in the fields talking when the pig put down the cow with a remark about how all he does is give milk, while he, the pig, was used for ham, bacon and other products.


The cow looked at the boastful pig and calmly intoned: ‘yes, you give when you’re dead, but I give while I am alive!’ Hn, hn! And the moral of the story there friends is that we ought to give while we’re alive, not wait until we die.


And how do we do that eh? Simply by obeying our Bit! ‘Blessed is that man that maketh the Lord his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.’


Yes my brethren, when we put out complete trust in the Lord, we will automatically be led by His Holy Spirit to do what is right and good! And we will also forsake the proud and deceitful workers of iniquity who devilishly try to lead us astray! That’s the promise of our God and our faith my people!


But we first have to step up to the plate and do our thing; surrendering our lives to our heavenly Father and allowing Him to put His infallible plan for us into action. Remember He is the Creator, and consequently knows what is best for us. And though we will have trials and tribulations, He has promised to see us through them and work everything out for our good.


Oh friends, it couldn’t get any better than that nuh! We have the Lord’s assurance on it! Glory Hallelujah! So why waste time and energy trying to do it on our own eh, when we have the Creator of the universe prepared to do it for us eh? No reason but foolish pride and the machinations of deceitful iniquity workers.


Now let’s go home with some awesome uplifting, encouraging and truthful words of Bruh David from Psalm 37 – The true state of the wicked. ‘Trust in the Lord and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed (feed on His faithfulness).


Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him, and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgement (justice) as the noonday.’ (Ps.37:3-6)


Words of gospel truth my brethren! And I can personally vouch for some of it, because coming to Tobago was a big desire of my heart and the Lord granted it to me. So as true and faithful believers, I implore us to raise the level of our trust in Almighty God, because it’s only then we will see and experience the full barrage of His LOVING-kindness! Much LOVE!


…Bruh David knew on which side his bread was buttered…do we know on which side ours is…I surely hope so… 



 
 
 

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