Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 January 2019 Matthew 5:13a, 14a.

Matthew 5:13a,14a.   ​Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world!
 
Well it’s the first Saturday in the New Year, and though the ole fella was up a bit early, he’s fallen somewhat behind the eight ball. But that’s allowed eh, especially on a cloudy, winter’s Saturday morn? (smile) Hope everybody is catching up on their rest after the hectic Christmas and New Year’s seasons, but please don’t put away the Christmas spirit with the decorations, and remember that we are walking closer with Jesus this year of 2019! 

And since it’s Saturday, it’s time to look at what our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Now this is an interesting scenario that he’s submitted: ‘We spend January 1st walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives… not looking for flaws, but for potential. 

Things to think about for 2019: 1. Talk less; listen more; 2. Remind yourself you are not the General Manager of the Universe; 3. Sit on your ego; 4. Take one day at a time; 5. Separate worries from concerns. If a situation is a concern, find out what God would have you to do and let go of the anxiety. If you can’t do anything about a situation, forget it; 6. Pray. Happy New Year to all my friends and family!‘ 

There’s nothing wrong with any of that! In fact it’s all stuff we should do, if we want to live a joyful and peaceful and blessed New Year! Then there is this quote that sort of paraphrases the thoughts above: ‘There are greater things to be achieved in every New Year, and each and everyone must prepare themselves to be great, not by words of the mouth, but by a lot of sacrifices.’ 

Oh friends, our world is in such a sad state of disrepair, that only enormous sacrifices on the part of each and every believer could ever hope to right it! That’s why, as true believers in, and steadfast followers of Christ, we have to totally embrace this last quote: ‘The ones who can see the vision when no one else can, and work on it like there is no tomorrow, will succeed. The rest will follow.’ 

Yes my Christian brethren, that’s what our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ expects of us; to have the vision He’s supplied and then to diligently and sincerely work on it like He desires of us. He most urgently wants us to be leaders, not followers! That’s why in His most memorable sermon, that on the Mount, He took such pains to point out what He expects of us: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world!’ 

Yeh faithful followers, in Jesus’ time, and still today, salt and light, are two of the most valuable things, much needed commodities in our world. Salt still enhances the taste of our food and keeps it fresh, while we can’t walk anywhere or do anything constructively if there’s only darkness. 

Light, especially that special light that Jesus brings and offers, is desperately needed in this terribly dark world of ours. The powers of evil and darkness are ruling the roost, and that doesn’t sit well with our Leader. And that ascendance of darkness and evil didn’t just happen overnight, it happened over a period of time when His followers were too lax, lazy, fearful and compromising to step up and confront the undesired situation! 

But remember friends, all is not yet lost, and once we have Jesus on our side, ANY and EVERYTHING is possible! However, we have to put in the sacrifices, the actual work, not just talk to improve our world! Just thing about the kind of world our grandchildren will inhabit in the next couple of decades if we do nothing NOW to make it better nuh? 

We’ve already allowed the evil and corruption of this world to fester and run like an inflamed sore, we can’t afford to let it get any worse, otherwise we’ll just have to amputate the rotting body part. That’s why these immortal words of Jesus ought always to be pounding in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls: 

‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savor (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lamp stand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt.5:13-15) 

 Oh friends, what more can I say eh? Except that we can’t let down Jesus like we’re currently doing! We need to pull up our britches and tighten our bootstraps if we want to be truly successful workers in His cause. And one thing also to remember, when we fail Jesus, since we are His chosen workers, it also means that He is failing the Father! 

And under no circumstance can we allow the Father the opportunity to look askance at Jesus. That’s why we have to make the effort, the real sacrifice this year of 2019 and do as He pleaded: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:16) 

Yes mih breddren, letting our light shine in this dark world must be our avowed purpose for this New Year, so that our Father in heaven, our Creator, Almighty God can be glorified. Remember that’s why He created us! Much LOVE!

…the Father sent Jesus to do a job…He did His part…set the foundation…then sub-contracted the rest of building His church to us… and He’s depending on us to do our part…to bring about successful completion…all to the glory of the Father’s name…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 January 2019 2 Chronicles 7:14.

2 Chronicles 7:14.   If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
HAPPY  NEW  YEAR !
 
Well a Happy New Year to all you my faithful Scrip-Bit Friends and Family! 2019 certainly came in with a bang in the Northern Climes as it rained on our New Year’s Eve Parades! Hn! Can we read something into it being very warm and rainy instead of cold and snowy as it usually is? I guess only the Good Lord knows. But nonetheless we’ll pray for a much better 2019 than the much troubled and controversial 2018 we’ve just been through. 

And speaking of prayer, here is a good one to begin the year with. It’s one of those prayers that keep rotating through the Internet, but that doesn’t make anything wrong with them. Someone recently sent this to the duchess and she sent it to me. It begins with this intro: ‘Please pick four people you want God to bless.’  And yuh know what? I picked all of you, my beautiful people in Christ! Glory be! 

And it continues: ‘This prayer is powerful, and prayer is one of the best gifts we receive.’ Now isn’t that the gospel truth! ‘Let’s always pray for one another.’ And do we ever need lots of prayer on behalf of each other in this evil and ungodly world! It’s a big part of our faith. 

So please let 2019 be a big year of prayer! The more prayers we send up to heaven, the more answers and blessings we’ll receive. Remember, we have not because we ask not! And when we do ask, we tend to ask for the wrong things, or with the wrong motives. 

Anyway, here is the prayer at last. (smile) Please pray with me: ‘Father, Thank You for each and every day You have blessed us here on earth. Thank You for Your tender mercies. Thank You for giving us friends and family to share these joys with. I ask You to bless my friends, relatives and those I care deeply for, who are reading this right now. 

Where there is joy, give them continued joy, where there is pain; give them your peace and mercy. Where there is self-doubt, release a renewed confidence. Where there is need, fulfill their needs. Bless their homestead, families, finances, their going out and their coming in…In Jesus’ name; Amen!’ 

And here is the postscript: ‘(If you choose to send this to more than four people, you are truly blessed to have such friends).’ That means I’m truly blessed! Glory to God! ‘Never postpone!’ That’s more wisdom there again, because we are such procrastinators, our lives are so comfortable that we keep putting off things we ought to do. 

Please let 2019 be the year of NO procrastination! And I’m taking that personally, because I get confused between waiting on God and doing what I think, or know I should do. (smile) And since we’ve been talking about that most powerful tool called prayer, I guess it’s only apropos that we find a Bit dealing with it. 

And here is this one from way back when, when the Lord made His covenant with Cousin Sol when the temple was dedicated. ‘If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.’ 

Oh my people, it’s amazing how our God puts things so simply, but we make them so complicated. Now what could be simpler than that statement above there eh? Nothing really! If His people, those called by His name, that’s us; children of God, humble our selves and pray sincerely and seek Him diligently and turn from our wicked ways, then He will hear us and heal our land. 

And yet we wonder why our land is in such disarray, such a disastrous state? The answer is simple my friends? We’re not humbling ourselves, and seeking God’s face and turning from our evil ways…Chuh! In fact we’re becoming more evil every day! So I ask again, how do we expect our land to be healed eh? 

And the Lord continued to Cousin Sol: ‘Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent (attentive) unto the prayer that is made in this place.’ (2 Chr.7:15) Yuh see another great promise there mih breddren! When His people come to the temple and pray, He promised to hear them. The same thing goes for us today. 

And the scholars offer this wonderful explanation on those verses. ‘7:14-15. While this promise was originally given to Solomon regarding the people of Israel, it is certainly applicable to all who call on the Lord in repentance and faith. These verses stand as a high expression of God’s LOVING readiness to hear the prayers of a repentant people (cf. 6-37-39; James 4:8-10).’ 

Oh friends, I couldn’t have put it any better! And I strongly suggest that you read those two references the scholars gave. The first is Cousin Sol praying at the dedication of the temple that when sinners come to it and pray, the Lord would hear them. And the Lord granted his wish. The next one is James telling us to ‘Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw night (near) to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye doubleminded.’ (James 4;8) It’s all simple and straightforward friends! 

 Now on this first Tuesday in 2019, with a strengthening of our faith, and an improvement of our prayer life front and centre, let’s go home telling the world, in no uncertain terms, who and whose we are, as we declare our Tuesday Mantra with great gusto! 

As one entity now: ‘In God’s eyes, 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!’ 

And there’s no better way to begin this New Year than by sharing Christ’s amazing LOVE and undying friendship with those who don’t know Him! Much LOVE!

…if you believe that Christ is a wonderful person and Saviour…don’t keep that good news to yourself…joyfully share it with others…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 November 2018 Psalm 109:4.

Psalm 109:4.   For (in return for) my LOVE they are my adversaries: but I give myself unto prayer.

So once again it is Monday friends; that day that so many of us dread without just cause. (smile) And no doubt, in these northern climes it’s also going to be another dreary and gloomy looking day, like the last few have been…Steups!  No wonder an air of sadness permeates our society in the winter months, something which we’ve finally recognized to be a serious problem and now term ‘SAD -Seasonal Affective Disorder,’ or something to that effect. (smile) 

And it happens a lot when the human animal is not getting sufficient light in their diet. And for sure we haven’t gotten enough in ours in the last little while! But the worse day for it to happen is on a Monday, when we’re already jaded and miserable over having to get up and go out to work after a weekend of fun and frolic. 

But fear not my people, for we might not have the physical sun at our disposal today, but we have a bigger, better and even brighter light than that dwelling within us; that’s our Lord and Saviour Christ Jesus…the LIGHT OF THE WORLD! His Holy Spirit is there to shed inner light on the darkness of our souls, which we are supposed to let shine on the outside to the rest of the world. For remember, we are the salt and light of the earth in Jesus’ eyes. 

So what if we shaking it a tad rough this Monday morning eh? Please don’t let it get us down, instead, let’s join together in prayer, the most powerful tool in God’s creation, and allow it to lift our spirits, let them soar right up to the dark, dreary clouds above. (smile) So altogether now, with confidence, for remember we have to approach the throne of grace boldly but humbly. 

‘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!’ 

Yuh see friends, yuh see the awesome power of prayer? Yuh realize now that your mood has suddenly lifted and you are now rearing to get out into the evil world and give it all you’ve got for Jesus! Mama Yo! That’s why as believers we need to pray, we’ve been instructed do so, and to do it continually, without ceasing. (1 Thess.5:17) 

And that’s why Bruh David wisely declared in our Bit: ‘For (in return for) my LOVE they are my adversaries: but I give myself unto prayer.’ He realized that on his own, he had no sway, or hold over those who came against him, but through prayer, with His omnipotent God by his side, he could be a mighty conqueror. And the same thing applies to us my brethren, if we would only give prayer a chance. 

 Now let’s look at some instances in the Good Book where prayer was greatly utilized. But first, hear these immortal words of Jesus on the subject to the disciples. ‘And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.’ (Matt.21:22) However, please note the most important word in that sentence is ‘believing.’ You have to believe; otherwise it’s a waste of time! 

Now hear Cousin Sol from Proverbs. ‘The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.’ (Prov.15:8) Yeh friends, our wonderful God takes great pleasure in hearing from those who believe in Him. So much so that James could confidently say: ‘Confess your faults (trespasses) one to another, that ye may be healed. The effectual (effective) fervent prayer (supplication) of a righteous man availeth much.’ (James 5:6) 

Then He goes on to give the example of how Elijah, a man just like us, prayed earnestly that it shouldn’t rain and it didn’t rain for three and a half years. Then he prayed for rain…and wonder of wonders…rain came tumbling down! (smile) 

And I like this particular occasion when prayer worked its wonders. That’s after Herod kills James and locks up Peter, intending to bring him out after the Passover and make a public spectacle of him. The Good Book says though: ‘Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.’ (Acts 12:6) And that same night the angel of the Lord came and escorted him out of the prison without a soul being the wiser. 

However, we also see here the problem of believing. For when Peter caught himself and realized what had happened, he made his way to the house of John Mark where people were praying for him. But when he knocked on the door and a lady who recognised his voice went and told the others that he was indeed free and outside, they foolishly claimed: ‘It is his angel.’ (Acts 12:15) So what’s the use of praying if you don’t believe that God can, and will answer your prayers eh? None whatsoever! 

So friends, let’s ‘wisen’ up nuh, believe what our faith says, and above all, trust in the Lord God Almighty who LOVES us more than we can ever imagine, and who, while we were yet sinners, sent His One Son, Jesus Christ to die for us! Much LOVE!

…with LOVE and PRAYER in his arsenal…the believing Christian…can conquer the world…

P.S. And bringing it even closer to home. Yuh think I could write such wonderful Bits over such a long period of time without sincere prayer and belief? Not on yuh life! (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 September 2018 James 5:16b.

James 5:16b.   The effectual (effective) fervent prayer (supplication) of a righteous man availeth much.

Aye mih people, it looks like a glorious day is in the offing in my neighbourhood! Glory to God! But all of us are not that blessed, like the people of North Carolina who are expecting Florence, a category 4 hurricane to bombard them sometime soon. 

But all most of us can do is pray for them. So let’s do that nuh! Let’s plead with the Lord to lessen the power of the storm, lessen His wrath, and even turn it away from making landfall, because we definitely don’t need any more devastation than what we already have. 

What does the Good Book say? ‘Confess your faults (trespasses) one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual (effective) fervent prayer (supplication) of a righteous man availeth much. Elijah was a man subject to like passions as we are (with a nature like ours), and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth fruit.’ (James 5:16 18) 

Yeh friends, that’s the power of prayer…unless the Lord is really tired and fed up with our sinful and ungodly shenanigans. Who knows? But as Bruh Paul wisely advised the Philippians: ‘Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.’ (Phil.4:6) 

Then to the Thessalonians he said: ‘Pray without ceasing.’ (1 Thess.5:17) That means prayer is ever so important my brethren! In fact it’s the most powerful tool we believers have in our arsenal. Yuh see, that even when you put on the armour of God, it’s not effective unless prayer accompanies it. (Eph.6:18) 

And we’re ever so blessed through Christ’s obedience to God’s will, that as joint heirs with Him, we can ‘come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’ (Heb. 4:16) Oh what a wonderful blessing and privilege that is my fellow believers! 

But we need to be careful, for when the Good Book says boldly, it doesn’t mean brash, bold face and arrogant, but with confidence and a suitable amount of humility because we’re going before Almighty God, the Creator and Controller of the universe and we must know our place. (smile) 

I like how the scholars put it: ‘4:16. Only Christianity provides such boldness for sinful men before a holy God, and that boldness is possible only because of our High Priest (Jesus) The throne suggests a place of authority and provision. It is the place to obtain God’s grace when it is especially needed.’ 

And do we ever need God’s grace and mercy in these sinful and ungodly times friends! So prayer should be uppermost in our lives, even more than usual. It’s the only way we have to communicate with our sovereign God. So please let’s get busy nuh! 

But along with the prayer must come some repentance and desire to stop being as sinful as we are and be obedient to God’s will. We obviously can’t be as obedient as Jesus was, because of our inherent sinful nature, but we all know that we can be better, even we believers can be much better. And if we are better and the world sees it, then the world will become better too. 

And that’s all we’re seeking my brethren; the betterment of the world, through our Lord and Saviour Christ Jesus! That’s why He came to earth and sacrificed His sinless life, and asked those who believe in Him to help Him make the world a better place. We surely aren’t doing that by our less than true Christian behaviour, not walking out talk like we should, and making the world turn away from Jesus, even to the point of blaspheming Him. 

That’s not right my people! As His disciples and ambassadors we have a bounden duty to show the world, through our lives, the vast merits and benefits available in turning to Him for salvation, care, comfort and eternal life! 

Hn, hn, hn! Ah mih people, it’s one of those days when the Holy Spirit just let the ole fella loose to do his thing. So I hope it all makes sense. I guess what I’m trying to advocate is the great importance of and need for prayer in our daily lives, both as individuals and as the church, the body of Christ, especially in these sinful end times. 

Remember the last time the world got so sinful, in the days of Noah, that the Lord couldn’t take anymore and He destroyed it by flood? And yes, He promised Noah that ‘the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.’ (Gen.9:15b) But friends, the Lord never promised not to destroy the world again, just not by water. 

So let’s wake up and smell the caffeine nuh; it’s percolating ever so strongly right below our very noses All is not right in our world, far from it, and we need to come to God in repentance without further ado, for who knows how much longer He will withhold His wrath on this evil world of ours? 

Now let’s go home now declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our position in Christ. In strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Oh friends, I implore us to think seriously on the matters we’ve spoken about and open up our hearts sincerely to Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour, for He is the ONLY answer to our many problems. Much LOVE!

…the future won’t be glorious for many of us…if we don’t repent and come to God …NOW…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 July 2018 Matthew 7:1.

Matthew 7:1.   Judge (condemn) not, that ye be not judged (condemned).

And so Saturday opened in my neighbourhood bright and beautiful…and cool! Thank the Lord! But down in southern California their heat wave apparently continues with temps reaching 110 degrees Fahrenheit!  Wow! And that wildfire in Northern California is still burning with a vengeance, causing people to run from their homes. 

Meanwhile, in Japan, the rain is causing havoc, having killed several people over the last couple days. Mama Mia! On one side of the globe is one type of disaster, and on the other is a different kind. 

But not to worry friends, the only way to handle all of that is by keeping our eyes and hearts steadfastly focused on Almighty God; our Creator, Protector and the Controller of ALL things. He has His reasons for allowing all that stuff, and there’s nothing much we can do about it but pray and offer whatever help we can. 

And since it’s Saturday, guess we should turn to the quotes of our friend Anselm for this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Unfortunately, I only received one quote from him this week, but it is an interesting one. 

‘Life experiences can, at times, be quite humbling, but you learn from them. But I like the changes in my life and what kind of person they’ve made me into. I’m very open, not as judgmental as I was in my twenties, and a lot more compassionate.’ 

And I know that’s true of many of us. In our early years we were full of spunk and hot to trot, figuring we knew everything and would show the world what was what. Hn! Hn! But instead the world showed us what was what! Isn’t that always the case when we get too high on our horses, or too big for our britches? 

The world and our God has a way of humbling us, of bringing us back down to earth, and sometimes with a heavy thud, which quickly brings us to our senses. Unfortunately, that scenario usually takes time to materialize, so it’s often not until we’ve lived real life that we see the faults in our approach to it. 

But as our quote says, eventually we become less judgemental and more compassionate. And oh how we badly need to reverse those two aspects of human nature in our mish-mash, evil and ungodly society today. Are we ever judgemental and opinionated about people and things we don’t know anything about. We see people and hear things and right away we jump to judgement, more often than not a negative judgement too. 

But it seems we have forgotten the immortal words of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ on that particular topic. ‘Judge (condemn) not, that ye be not judged (condemned).’  I couldn’t put it any better or simpler friends. 

And Jesus continues: ‘For with what judgement (condemnation) ye judge, ye shall be judged, and with what measure ye mete (use) it shall be measured to you again.’ (Matt.7:2) That’s just poetic justice friends, the law of God’s society, whatever you sow, you’ll reap; whatever you give out, you’ll get back. It’s like a boomerang; you throw it at someone but it comes right back to you. 

Ah mih people, nobody can expand on a story like Jesus.  Hear how He embellishes this: ‘And why beholdest thou the mote (speck) that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam (plank) that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote (speck) out of thine eye; and behold a beam (plank) is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote (speck) out of thy brother’s eye.’ (Matt.7:3-5) 

Oh, is it ever refreshing to listen to Jesus! You’re always surprised and astonished by His metaphorical comparisons. And the scholars offer these explanations on those verses. ‘7:1-4. Judge not refers to an unfavourable and condemnatory judgement. 

This does not mean that a Christian should never exercise judgement of any kind under any circumstances. The point being made here is that we are not to judge the inner motives of another. We are not to render a verdict based upon prejudiced information. Nor are we to use ourselves as the standard of judgement for with what…ye mete (measure) you shall be judged. 

That ye be not judged refers to the ultimate judgement of God rather than our own judgement. The terms mote (Gr. karphos) and beam (Gr. dokos) are used metaphorically for a small fault and a great fault. A mote is a small speck of sawdust whereas a beam is a rafter used in building. Thus the idea of the text is that one cannot remove the speck from his brother’s eye until he has removed the rafter from his own eye!’ 

That hits the nail right on the head! And the scholars have another good one for verse ‘7:5. Thou hypocrite is the only statement that can be made for this play actor who pretends to be a physician when he himself is sick.’ 

And the sad part is that so many of us play actor doctors in this greedy, selfish and judgemental world are very sick ourselves, but we’re quick to dole out prescriptions to others. In other words, we’re hypocrites to the core! 

Oh my fellow believers, please let us take a good look at ourselves before we go doling out solutions to others nuh, because very often we are doing worse than those we judge and condemn. Much LOVE!

…don’t offer opinions…unless you know the whole true story…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 April 2018 2 Chronicles 7:14.

2 Chronicles 7:14.    If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

And then it was Monday again…so I guess most of you readers are already at work, struggling after a partying weekend…but not my people, because we know better than that. (smile) Uncharacteristically though, I’ve been sleeping through most of the day. I guess the ole bod needs the rest. I’m not doing badly though, should be out of here tomorrow. 

But let’s do what we have to do, let’s sing out our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, because it’s prayer and is useful at any time of day or night. As one 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!’ 

Glory be my people! Prayer is such a wonderful thing! It not only connects us to our Triune God Head, but it also uplifts our souls and spirits at the same time. What could be better than that eh? That’s why it’s the most important weapon in a believer’s arsenal. And it’s possibly why I am still alive and kicking today; because of all the pleading prayers you all made on my behalf. 

So please, let us never belittle or downplay the power of prayer, especially since it’s the method the Creator chose for us to communicate with Him. As He says in our Bit today: ‘If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.’ 

And the scholars tell us: ‘7:14-15. While this promise was originally given to Solomon regarding the people of Israel, it is certainly applicable to all who will call on the Lord in repentance and faith. These verses stand as a high expression of God’s LOVING readiness to hear the prayers of a repentant people (cf. 6:37-39; James 4:8-1).’ 

And in these modern times where sin and evil are so prevalent, do we ever need to pray for help to overcome our numerous problems. That’s why in the New Testament we’re told so often about prayer and praying. Like Bruh Paul told the Thessalonians: ‘Pray without ceasing.’ (1 Thess.5:17) That doesn’t necessarily mean every minute of every day, but on a regular basis. Prayer should just be a thought away from our minds. And Bruh Paul told Timothy that ‘I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.’ (1 Tim.2:8) 

Meanwhile James admonishes: ‘Is any among you afflicted (suffering)? let him pray. Is any merry? Let him sing psalms. Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with the oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. Confess your faults (trespasses) one to another, that ye may be healed. The effectual (effective) fervent prayer (supplication) of a righteous man availeth much.’ (James 5:13-16) 

Yuh see friends, prayer is helpful in every situation of our daily walk with Christ! Be it in the church or out of it. And Bruh Paul reminds us in Ephesians, that even when we put on the life-saving armour of God, we still need prayer to help us along. ‘Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.’ (Eph.6:18) 

And the scholars explain: ‘6:18. Praying is grammatically linked to “stand” in verse 14. Without prayer, God’s armour is inadequate to achieve victory. Prayer is indispensable. Always means “on every occasion,” that is, when Satan attacks. In the Spirit signifies that with the Spirit’s help such prayer for divine aid is to be made. Watching thereunto means ‘being vigilant in this very matter” of prayer. They are to pray not just for themselves but also for all saints; spiritual combat is both and individual and corporate matter.’ 

Oh my people, I couldn’t have put it any better. And I believe the best way to end this refresher course on prayer is with the prayer that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ taught us. ‘After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (the evil one): For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen!’ (Matt.6:9-13) 

Please friends and fellow believers, let’s remember to never belittle the power of prayer, instead, let’s wisely lift it up to the great heights that it is supposed to take in our lives nuh, because it’s all for our benefit. Much LOVE!

…to pray…and yet to pray…and to keep on praying…that is wisdom of the highest order…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 April 2018 2 Timothy 3:16.

2 Timothy 3:16.    All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.

Ah mih people, this Sunday morning we can go to the Lord’s sanctuary without any fear of slipping and sliding or getting in an accident because of the dreadful weather! Glory be! The ice is slowly disappearing as the weather gets a little warmer. But last week it was something else. And that ice-storm was not half as bad as one a few years ago. They are worse than just the ordinary snow storms. 

Anyway, that’s in the past now, let’s look to the glorious spring weather that’s ahead of us and go to fellowship with other faithful believers, to sing and praise and make merry to Almighty God, and receive His resurgent confidence and enthusiasm in our tired and empty souls. Some of us might need two weeks resurging, since we didn’t get any last week. (smile) 

But whatever, or how much ever we need, we know we will get it in the Lord’s house, so let’s open as always with some praise and worship,  with this foundational hymn ‘Standing on the Promises of God’ written by Russel Kelso Carter, a professor in the Pennsylvania Military College of Chester.

 His bio reads thus: ‘While there he was licensed to preach by the Methodist Episcopal Church. He became very active in leading camp meetings and revivals. After failing health forced him to abandon this work, he studied and became a medical doctor as well as a writer. He wrote novels as well as hymns.

Yeh friends, it’s obvious he knew what he was talking about when he wrote the hymn. So let’s declare it now nuh, with joyful voices and sincere hearts, because those are such wonderful promises we have to stand on, that mere words alone couldn’t do them justice. 

As one glorious choir now: ‘Standing on the promises of Christ my king, through eternal ages let his praises ring; glory in the highest, I will shout and sing, standing on the promises of God. (Refrain: Standing, standing, standing on the promises of God my Savior; standing, standing, I’m standing on the promises of God.) 

Standing on the promises that cannot fail, when the howling storms of doubt and fear assail, by the living Word of God I shall prevail, standing on the promises of God. [Refrain] Standing on the promises of Christ the Lord, bound to him eternally by LOVE’S strong cord, overcoming daily with the Spirit’s sword, standing on the promises of God. 

[Refrain] Standing on the promises I cannot fall, listening every moment to the Spirit’s call, resting in my Savior as my all in all, standing on the promises of God. [Refrain].’ 

Oh friends, oh friends, doesn’t that just elevate your soul and spirit to new heights of rapture? (smile) It ought to since we have such golden promises made to us by a most faithful Deity. And today friends, we are going to check out some of those awesome promises found in God’s word. 

And we’ll begin with one that lays the foundation for them all, the words of Bruh Paul to Timothy re the truth of scripture, as stated in our Bit. ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.’ 

That is the first step my brethren; to acknowledge that the word of God is true, and though written by mortal men, was inspired by the Holy Spirit of God, under God’s authority and guidance, and it is indeed a guide book for earthly living in righteousness. As Bruh Paul continues: ‘That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished (equipped) unto all good works.’ (2 Tim.3:17) There we have it friends, guidance and regulations to lead a godly life. 

Here are some useful explanations from the scholars. ‘3:14-17. Inspiration of God (lit. “God-breathed.”) describes the unique character of scripture. It is not only written by men, but authored by God. For doctrine means to tell one what to believe. For reproof means to tell one what is wrong. For correction means to tell one how to correct wrong. 

For instruction in righteousness means to tell one how to live. Perfect (Gr. artios, “proficient, capable”) is having everything needed to do what God wants.Thoroughly furnished means “thoroughly equipped.” God’s inspired Word, properly used and applied, provides all we need for life and ministry.’  

Mama Yo mih breddren! Where can you find another all-encompassing tome like that eh? Nowhere else in the world but in the Christian faith! Glory to our great God, who in His endless wisdom gave us ALL that we needed to live the kind of life He desires of us. And so having acknowledged that the word of God is true, let’s look at a couple of promises that are contained therein. 

The first one is a scripture that we all know and quote, but how many of us truly believe it eh? It’s from the prophet Jeremiah and says: ‘For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end.’ (Jer.29:11) 

But that doesn’t come just so friends. We have to pray, call upon God, seek Him with all our hearts, live the kind of life He expects of us, then we’ll see His mercy and favour and the plan He has designed for each one of His people. Now I think we only have space for one more promise; that from Bruh Paul to the Philippians: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.4:19) 

Yeh friends, because of the Philippians sacrifice on behalf of Bruh Paul, God will meet their need in a glorious manner through Jesus Christ. The same applies to us today my fellow believers – live the way God desires, and you’ll want for nothing. And we’ll end with these most appropriate words of Bruh Paul. ‘Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.’ (Phill.4:20) 

More on the promises of God tomorrow friends, God willing. Till then, please walk safely with Him. Much LOVE!

…some promises have conditions…others don’t…but they are ALL readily available…

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