Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 January 2020 Zechariah 9:12.

Zechariah 9:12.    ​Turn you to the stronghold, ye prisoners of hope: even today do I declare that I will render (restore) double unto thee.
 
Well here I am, on this first Thursday in the new year, anxiously asking the Lord what I should write about today. Hn! It certainly seems like the ole fella is lacking in mental …what’s the word…I think it’s acuity – mental sharpness, this cold but somewhat sunny winter’s morn. And I seem to remember the great philosopher Plato saying something like, remember the beginning is the most important part of the work. And the beginning certainly is important, that’s why I want to begin good today. (smile) 

But I don’t know if it’s the most important part, because with Jesus, it doesn’t matter so much where we begin, but more so where we end! And on His continuum, as Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say: ‘I’m not where I want to be just yet, but thank God, I’m certainly not where I used to be’ ….or something to that effect. (smile) And is that ever good news my fellow believers! 

The fact that Jesus will take us however and wherever we are, at any particular moment in time, and make us into what He desires us to be, with the long term goal of being fashioned in His unbeatable and wonderful character, which ought to lend a spark of hope to all who hear His Word and believe His awesome promises! A Bruh Paulian sentence, if there ever was one! (smile) And believe me my brethren, that just sparked a thought, obviously a God-given one, re what I should write about today. 

Yuh see God’s awesome faithfulness! One of my favourite scriptures just jumped up and became number one for today. Hear this great promise from the Lord our God, through the mouth of the prophet Zechariah when talking about Zion’s future king; a prophecy that Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday uniquely fulfilled. ‘Turn you to the stronghold, ye prisoners of hope: even today do I declare that I will render (restore) double unto thee.’ 

Oh my people, what a beautiful promise! But what I like most about that scripture is the descriptive term, ‘prisoners of hope.’ It just so aptly describes what followers of Jesus ought to be; people with unending hope because He is the ‘stronghold,’ the fortress, the high tower, the fountain, the eternal source from wherein hope is spread abroad. 

Yes mih breddren, hope is the believer’s greatest treasure, since it’s the forerunner of faith. You can’t have faith without first having hope. Because as the Good Book says: ‘Now faith is the substance (realization) of things HOPED for, the evidence (conviction) of things not seen.’ (Heb.11:1) So you see faith is indeed based on hope. And  as Bruh Paul reasons in Romans: ‘For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience (perseverance) (eagerly) wait for it.’ (Rom.8:24-25) 

Now that’s what separates the goats from the sheep, what shows up the true prisoners of hope! If we truly believe in Jesus and all that He’s said, done and promised, then with strong hope and faith, meaning endurance and perseverance, we will eagerly await His coming and the fulfillment of His awesome promises! But friends, it’s all got to begin with belief and hope that lead to an indestructible faith! No wonder we have the clichéd but oh so true statement, that while there is life, there is hope! 

Indeed there is, especially in Christ Jesus, who never turns away anybody, even when they are down to their last and dying breath! Wow! So how can we not have strong faith and indescribable hope if we claim to be true believers eh? O mih people, this new year of 2020 is calling us to be awesome prisoners of hope and faith because our world is in a very disastrous place, right on the edge of the precipice of imploding into war, darkness and hellfire! More than ever, we believers need to be the sensational salt and light of this misdirected world as Jesus declared of and still desires of us. 

The fate of our world, and thus our children’s and children’s children lives depend on our faith and hope and desire to try and set things right! There’s no denying that so far our generation hasn’t done a great job, we’ve allowed our world to keep falling to hell, like you know what in a handbasket. But as we said earlier on, while there is life there is always hope. So this morning I’m imploring, begging, bullying; yes whatever it takes, for us to get on our horses and ride; ride for Jesus sake, also for our descendants sake, for if we don’t do something in the near future, we won’t like to see what our world will come to. 

And I guess that’s the highly inflammable, important, and urgent word the Lord wanted me to pass on this morning! (smile) Let’s get serious friends, and realize the sense of immediacy, of urgency in His message, and thus get totally and seriously involved. And we can’t say that we don’t have the wherewithal to do the job, because the Lord has already given us all the tools we need, so artfully contained in our Thursday Blessings. So let’s declare them out loud now nuh, so that they can be put into force. 

In strong voice and sincere purpose: ‘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!’ 

In closing, I must remind us that those tools are to be generously shared, not hoarded for our selfish benefit, especially in this new year, which will be such a pivotal one in the annals of mankind! Much LOVE!

…to hope…or not to hope…that is the question for believers today…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 December 2019 Proverbs 16:9.

Proverbs 16:9.    A man’s heart deviseth  (plans) his way: but the Lord directeth his steps.
 
Well the big day’s finally over! Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas Day and are now moving into a quieter Boxing Day! Hope you did find some time to ponder on the spiritual aspect of the season betwixt and between all the food and frenetic celebrations, (smile) because it’s that spiritual connection which is going to carry us through the upcoming year. Without it, we’d be simply lost and out of our league. So please hang on to it.  (smile) 

But look at how life changes eh! Remember when Boxing Day was the big day of sales? Now it’s just the baby brother, mostly for returning Christmas stuff that you didn’t want or didn’t fit. All of a sudden it’s been overtaken by Black Friday and Cyber Monday as the premiere sales days. But that’s how it moves, ever so quickly nowadays in our topsy-turvy technological world. Let’s never forget one most significant thing though friends; regardless of how this world turns, the Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, it’s Creator, is still sitting on His throne in high heaven in total control! 

Yes friends, man can do whatever he wants, because the Lord has given him a free will, but in the overall context, it is the Lord’s purpose(s) that always has and have prevailed, and will always prevail. Let’s check out some scriptures that remind us of this most important fact nuh. And Cousin Sol is a master of these li’l bon mots; these witty but ever so true sayings. Hear him in these words of moral, ethical and spiritual precepts. 

‘The preparations (plans) of the heart in man (belong to man), and the answer of the tongue, is from the Lord. All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the Lord weigheth the spirits.’ (Prov.16:1-2) All of that simply means that the Lord is sovereign over man’s thoughts and words and is a discerner of our thoughts. He searches our hearts for our motives, doesn’t just accept the words or actions we declare. Therefore, the only wise and sensible way to live this life is to do as Cousin Sol advises: ‘Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established.’ (Prov.16:3) 

Now that’s what we, as supposedly sincere believers in Christ Jesus ought to be doing. But too often we let the enemy into our souls and he screws up our lives, making them of none effect for Christ and the Good News we’re supposed to be spreading. But hear Cousin Sol again nuh: ‘A man’s heart deviseth  (plans) his way: but the Lord directeth his steps.’ Oh  my people, why is it so difficult for us to understand that God is sovereign over our scheming and planning eh? When are we going to learn that in the long run, it is always God’s plans that are going to prevail? 

As Cousin Sol says: ‘The Lord hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil (doom).’ (Prov.16:4) So even the wicked belongs to the Lord! And Jeremiah adds his two cents worth: ‘O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.’ (Jer.10:23) And it wouldn’t hurt either if we could pray like Jerry: ‘O Lord, correct me, but with judgement (justice); not in thine anger, lest thou bring me to nothing.’ (Jer.10:24) 

Yes friends, as the scholars tell it. ‘10:24-25. Jeremiah surrenders to God’s programme of judgement but asks that the necessary chastisement not be carried out severely (cf. 46:28; Hab.3:2).’ We absolutely need to surrender our lives to God, to get with His programme, and not ours or the enemy’s, if we want to be successful and prosperous in this life and the one to come. Now here are some more words of wisdom on the subject from Cousin Sol, he has so much to offer. (smile) 

‘There are many devices (plans) in a man’s heart; nevertheless the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand… The fear (reverence) of the Lord tendeth to life: and he that hath it shall abide satisfied: he shall not be visited with evil.’ (Prov.19:21, 23) And furthermore: ‘Man’s goings (steps) are of the Lord; how can a man then understand his own way?’ (Prov.20:24) That’s a very good question my fellow believers. And the answer is simply he can’t, because God’s thoughts, plans, and ways are so much higher than ours. 

So my brethren, as we wind down this Christmas season, I think it’s only fit for us to spend some time pondering our personal situations; re our attitude towards God, and consequently the time we spend with Him, for remember, God doesn’t really need us, but we do need Him…and tremendously too! So having said it all, let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings this wonderful Boxing Day, blessings the Lord has so generously bestowed on us so that we can do His work. 

In loud 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!’

Now let’s go out and share those magnificent blessings with the less fortunate, as Jesus desires of us. Much LOVE!

…in Christ Jesus…we have EVERYTHING we need…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 December 2019 Hebrews 4:12.

Hebrews 4:12.    For the word of God is quick (living), and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner (able to judge) of the thoughts and intents (intentions) of the heart.
 
Ah mih people, just six more days to that magical, mysterious, miraculous day we call Christmas Day! Wow! Can you imagine the stir it made in ole Bethlehem that Christmas Eve night when the angels came a-singing and a glorifying and exalting our new born Saviour? Anyhow, today we’re not dealing with the birth of Christ so much as the source from which we get that news: ‘The BOOK OF ALL BOOKS!’ 

Mama Mia! What a marvellous book is our Bible! And so it should be since it’s the Lord’s Word. No other tome has such drama, and in such abundance! The stuff written today pales in dramatic content, promises and story-telling. So let’s get to today’s poem of the same name from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. 

Please pray with me: ‘Lord, I am overshadowed As I read Your living Word. What power, what pungency I find within its pages. It stirs me, burns within me It challenges me, invigorates me And often disturbs me. When I obey its commands The results are what You claim: Darkness becomes light Crooked places become straight The more I seek, the more I find. Within its pages, God I see beyond mere philosophy I see beyond a neat package of ethics. I crash head-on with a living Person The One who makes all things new. No other book can claim as much.’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my fellow believers! No other book is as powerful, mind-bending and moving as the Word of God! I like how the author of the poem talks about its power, its pungency! And ALL of us who have read it, have found it to be at times, burning like a fire within us, like it was with Jeremiah when he lamented against God. ‘Then I said, I will not make mention of him, nor speak anymore in his name. But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing (holding back), and I could not stay (endure it).’ (Jer. 20:9) 

Yeh friends, that’s just how the Lord’s Word acts on us, especially when we get discouraged. We don’t want to deal with it, but it’s so powerful that it forces us to do so! And which one of us hasn’t found the Word to be ofttimes challenging, invigorating, and downright disturbing eh? NONE! And it will ALWAYS be so, because that’s the purpose of the Word; to challenge, invigorate and disturb us to come to and stay obedient to the Lord! And the great thing is that when we obey the Word, we find the results are exactly what it claims; light overshadows darkness, joy comes in the morning, crooked places are made straight, and we do find more when we seek more. 

But unfortunately, and rather sadly, too many of us read the Word, know that it’s true, but still don’t follow it. Thus our lives are never as successful and prosperous as they can be. Please, please, I implore us to remember the momentous words the Lord spoke to Joshua when He made him leader of the Israelites after Moses’ death. ‘This book of the law shall not depart out of (be constantly in) thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.’ (Josh. 1:8) 

Oh my people, my people, that is perhaps the most important, provocative, wise and revealing verse in all of the Good Book! It gives us the blueprint for successful and prosperous living in just a few words, and from the Lord Himself! What could be more enlightening eh? Absolutely NOTHING! But yet so many of us supposed believers refuse to take it seriously, or as seriously as we ought to. But friends and neighbours, please listen very closely to these words as found in the Good Book that rather frighteningly describe the true power of God’s Word.

‘For the word of God is quick (living), and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner (able to judge) of the thoughts and intents (intentions) of the heart. Neither is any creature that is not manifest in (hidden from) his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do (must give account to).’ (Heb. 4:12-13) Oh friends, please allow all of that to sink in deep into our souls nuh! The Lord’s Word is indeed living and sharp and very discerning, thus we have to pay serious attention to how we live it. 

Hear the scholars: ‘4:12-13. For the word of God: The reason given for one’s careful scrutiny of his life involves the reality that God is intently scrutinizing it. His word is quick (living). This word is first in the Greek and is the emphasis. God’s Word is not old or archaic; it is alive. It is not inept or inactive; it is powerful (active). It reaches into the inner secrets of man’s mind to discern even his thoughts and intents. Likewise, God’s eye sees man as though he were naked, unable to hide behind excuses or pretense.’ 

Bubba! If that doesn’t shake us up to the reality of God’s ever searching, discerning and plumbing of all our thoughts and intentions, I don’t know what will nuh. All I can say now is let’s go home declaring (yeah!) our Thursday Blessings which the Lord has so generously granted us. In loud and sincere voice now, because they don’t come into play until we speak them out. 

‘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 the thing to remember now is that those awesome blessings were granted to us so generously so that we can turn around and share them generously with others. So let’s do that nuh, especially at this Christmas season, the season of giving! Much LOVE!

…God’s Word…created the world…keeps it alive…and will in His time…destroy it…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 December 2019 Luke 1:34.

Luke 1:34.    ​Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man (I am a virgin)?
 

Oh friends, there’s nothing more annoying, frustrating and depressing than waking up excitedly to greet the new day only to find a fresh coat of snow on the ground! Chuh! And it only gets more annoying, frustrating and depressing when you look out and see the small, weightless, white flakes still falling effortlessly to God’s great earth! I’m chuckling here, but you know that once the white stuff flies, lives will undoubtedly become more serious and dangerous, because it looks good when it just covers the land, but it can certainly be the devil’s associate when you have to venture out in it. 

It’s a good thing we have Jesus yes, that awesome shepherd, who leads and guides His flock with masterful precision…! Give Him some thanks and praise people, for He’s certainly deserving of it! And isn’t it strange, but certainly wonderful, how in the northern climes when the snow flies, that’s when we celebrate the birth of Jesus? Glory be mih brethren! The ole fella’s getting excited…so yuh better hold me back! I need to do like Jeeves says, have a modicum of circumspection… 

Nah, I don’t think so. When you’re excited about Jesus, you just have to let it flow! (smile) So we going to do just that by continuing where we left off yesterday, talking about Jesus’ miraculous virgin birth, His supernatural conception in His mother Mary’s womb, the wonderful incarnation where He, Jesus, God, became flesh (incarnate) to come and dwell amongst sinful man, to personally experience our hardships and then gloriously deliver us from them through His sacrificial death on Calvary’s cross, His triumphant resurrection on that wonderful Easter morn, and then His ascension back to heaven to be our friend and advocate at the Father’s right hand! 

How could it get any better than that eh mih people? No way Jose! We now have another, newer and much better option than his satanic majesty. That’s why it’s so mind-boggling when people refuse to believe in Jesus, and even go so far as to blaspheme His holy name and try to kick Him out of our society! Steups! What stupidity! Anyway, they will get their comeuppance in due time, because as the ole people say; time longer than twine, and when the good Lord ready, in His time, He will make all wrong things right. 

Now yuh see, all yuh get me so excited that I’ve gotten away from what we suppose to be talking about! (smile) And that’s the momentous occasion when the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and told her about her favoured condition with God and the virgin birth she would have. And having listened to Gabriel’s spiel with, no doubt, bated breath, Mary finally found her voice. ‘Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man (I am a virgin)?’ Oh what a most plausible question, back in those times that is. Today we do that all the time through artificial insemination.  

‘And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest (Most High) shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing (one) which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.’ (Luke 1:35-36) And so it should be, because the sperm that inseminated Mary was of God the Father, and we characterize children by their fathers, so it’s a no brainer that Jesus should be considered the Son of God. (smile) 

As the scholars explain: ‘1:35. By a process we cannot explain, Mary will find herself with child through no human agency. Conceived by God, Jesus would be of sinless nature, though no less human due to that fact.’ Wow! Both God and man at the same time! How marvellous! That means He could appreciate our trials and tribulations because He also suffered them, though He did not sin! Isn’t our God wonderful and ever so imaginative and far sighted? That’s why his thoughts and ways are higher than ours. 

And to prove my point, listen to this bit of news that Gabriel shared with Mary to boost her spirit. ‘And behold, thy cousin (relative) Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. For with God nothing shall be impossible.’ (Luke 1:35-37) Yuh see how our great God moves in mysterious ways? Elisabeth had been barren for all of her life, but like Sara and Hannah, in her old age she was blessed with one of God’s special people, John the Baptist; Christ’s forerunner; the one lighting His way, crying out from the wilderness: ‘Repent ye: for the kingdom of God is at hand.’ (Matt. 3:2) 

Yeh friends, our God doesn’t leave anything to chance. He knew that when Mary heard of Elisabeth’s pregnancy, her spirit would be boosted. And in my humble opinion, there’s no more touching, heartfelt and faith-showing scripture than Mary’s answer to the mind-blowing info she’d just received. ‘And Mary said, behold the handmaid (maidservant) of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.’ (Luke 1:38) 

Mama Mia! What faith and trust and surrender in such a young woman! Even today we’d have serious problems with such a situation. But can you imagine the negative connotations that held for her in a small Jewish town; betrothed, but unmarried and with child, and supposedly not her betrothed’s child either? But she didn’t whinge and whine; just said, so be it. I do hope that Mary’s story will speak to us today and raise our level of faith, because it’s such a faith inducing epic. 

Now let’s go home declaring (yeah!) our Thursday Blessings which the Lord has so generously bestowed on us who live and breathe to do His holy Will. As one, in strong voice, believing as we speak: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Now don’t forget, we’re not to hoard those God-given blessings, but to share them generously with others! Much LOVE!

…what a wonderful world this would be…if our faith was as big as Mary’s…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 November 2019 Psalm 81:9.

Psalm 81:9.    ​There shall no strange (foreign) god be in thee; neither shalt thou worship any strange god.

Welcome to another wonderful day on God’s great earth my people! And I won’t be presumptuous and pass judgement on the kind of weather we’re going to have today, although it is dark and cloudy. (smile) Why you ask? Because I did that yesterday and much to my surprise the ugly duckling at the beginning had turned into a beautiful princess by early afternoon, with bright sunshine and temps up to 8 degrees Celsius! (smile)

And if the weather forecasters are right, today is supposed to follow in the same footsteps. So instead of bad-mouthing the day, let’s look forward to another glorious one, with a good attitude, in which we do God’s will and work in an excellent and diligent manner. 

And all God’s children said, ‘Praise the Lord!’ And speaking of praise, last night while reading the Daily Bread Devotional, I learned that the Israelites had a psalm appointed to be sung on each day of the week, and Thursday’s was Psalm 81, a psalm of Asaph, so I decided we should check it out and sing it today.

So here we go: ‘Sing aloud unto God our strength; make a joyful noise (shout) unto the God of Jacob. Take a psalm (raise a song), and bring hither (strike) the timbrel, the pleasant harp with the psaltery (lyre). Blow up the trumpet in (at the time of) the new moon, in the time appointed, on our solemn feast day. For this was the statute for Israel, and a law of the God of Jacob.’ (Ps. 81:1-4) 

And according to the scholars: ‘Psalm 81. The background of the psalm appears to be the Feast of Tabernacles (Lev. 23:34-44) which reminded the people of God’s law and also constituted the feast of ingathering (Ex. 23:16).’ So the people had constant reminders of God’s law and His overwhelming goodness to their forefathers! 

Ah friends, if we could only begin each day with songs of praise and worship to Almighty God, how wonderful that would be! But most of us just get up and go our way, without even a thought of giving thanks for seeing another day, possibly so overwhelmed by the troubles facing us, that that’s all we can think about. But if we would do like Jesus says and bring all our burdens to Him, we’d find rest and peace for our weary souls. (Matt. 11:28-30) 

Now hear this part of the psalm that the Lord kept pounding in the Israelites’ ears, and is still pounding in our own to this day: ‘There shall no strange (foreign) god be in thee; neither shalt thou worship any strange god. I am the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it.’ (Ps. 81:9-10) Yes people, that’s the First Commandment of the ten that the Lord gave to Moses for the Israelites to live by, and consequently all later believers. (Ex. 20:3) 

I don’t know what’s so hard to understand in that nuh: No other God is supposed to rival the One True God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! But Israel only listened when it was convenient to them, when they found themselves between a rock and a hard place because of their obstinate and willful disobedience. And sadly, we’re doing the same thing today; we’re trying to push God out of our society, a society that became prosperous and powerful because of His goodness and mercy. Steups! How foolish can we get eh? 

No wonder the Lord commented: ‘But my people would not hearken (heed, listen to) my voice; and Israel would (have) none of me. So I gave them up unto their own hearts’ lust (stubbornness), and they walked in their own counsels.’ (Ps. 81:11-12) And yuh see what happened to Israel when they walked in their own counsel…sufferation everlasting! And it’s the same so and so thing that’s happening to us today because we refuse to walk in God’s will! Look at the strife torn world we’re currently living in nuh! 

Look at the great amount of poverty, sickness, joblessness and homelessness in the midst of so much plenty! No generation has ever been as prosperous and powerful as ours, but we’re letting it go down the drain because of our greed, foolish pride and refusal to worship the One True God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; the One who gives us power to get wealth! (Deut. 8:18) Yes friends, it’s not our own strength or wisdom that causes us to prosper in this evil world, and until we come to our senses and remember that, our world will continue to fall apart and go right down to hell in a handbasket! 

And as Bruh Paul later put it to the church at Rome: ‘And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate (debased) mind, to do those things which are not convenient (fitting); Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate (strife), deceit, malignity (evil-mindedness); whisperers…’ (Rom. 1:28-29)

And that’s not the whole list. But seriously my brethren, if we take a look around us that’s what our world has become; one of pure evil and ungodliness, and if we continue down that path, all we’ll eventually reap is death and destruction, because that is what God has promised to those who don’t follow His will. 

But the wonderful thing about our God is that He never gives up on us. Hear how He agonized over the Israelites, and still agonizes over us. ‘Oh that my people had hearkened unto me, and Israel had walked in my ways! I should soon have subdued their enemies, and turned my hand against their adversaries.’ (Ps. 81:13-14) So let’s remember that while there is life, there’s always hope. Consequently, for those of us who seriously believe and are concerned about the state of our world, let’s use these tools, what we call our Thursday Blessings, that God has so generously granted us, to right our fallen world nuh. 

So let’s declare them now with loud voice and strong conviction, for they are only invoked when we speak them aloud. Altogether: ‘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!’ 

Yes mih faithful breddren, now it’s time to go out and generously share them with the unfortunate and unwise, as Jesus so dearly desires! Much LOVE!

…history speaks for itself…the haters of God were destroyed…and will continue to be destroyed…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 November 2019 Psalm 145:3.

Psalm 145:3.    ​Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable (beyond our understanding).
 

Oh precious people of Christ, it’s a new day, with new mercies and new compassions from our heavenly Father! Praise His holy name! And we’ll do just that this cloudy, dreary-looking Thursday morning, starting with a poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. And it’s ever so appropriately titled ‘Celebration!’ 

So please pray with me sincerely: ‘When I think of Your lavish goodness The longings You’ve satisfied The forgiveness You’ve granted The promises You’ve kept When I think of Your irresistible LOVE Your ceaseless care Your unfailing protection… O Lord God I want to raise flags And fly banners And sound bugles. I want to run with lighted torches And praise You From the mountaintop. I want to write symphonies And shout for joy. I want to throw a festive party For ten thousand guests. I want to celebrate with streamers and bright lights And an elaborate banquet.’ And God’s answer to all that… ‘Fine, dear child I’m ready.’ 

Oh friends, nobody like s a party, a celebration like our wonderful God, especially when He’s the One we’re celebrating! And He does deserve a whole lot of celebrating for all those things said in the poem about His goodness and LOVING-kindness are eternally true! And He’s ready to party, whenever we are! And we are indeed ready! So let’s begin by glorifying Him in the words of Bruh David from his psalm of praise: ‘I will extol (praise) thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever. Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.’ (Ps. 145:1-2) 

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, that is exactly how we ought to behave every single day of our lives! And if you want to know why we singing His praises so vociferously each and every day, then listen to our Bit, Bruh David’s next words: ‘Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable (beyond our understanding).’ And it surely is my people! And I like how the Lord didn’t wait for us to find that out for ourselves, but plainly told us so in His own words: ‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than yours, and my thoughts than your thoughts.’ (Is. 55:8-9) And that’s an indisputable fact! 

And the scholars offer this most interesting and intriguing explanation: ‘55:8-13. God’s sovereignty and omniscience are extolled by the statement that His thoughts (i.e., purposes or intentions) and ways (Gr. derakim, or “directions”) are higher than ours. While God may certainly be known by men, He is still incomprehensible in the totality of His person and purposes. Therefore, He reveals Himself to men by His word, which shall not return to him void (in vain). The Word of God, therefore, accomplishes His purpose in announcing salvation.’ And are we ever so grateful for that! 

Now let’s hear a few scriptures that do establish God’s sovereignty and His awesome incomprehensibility to mortal man. Hear Zophar when he reproves Job: ‘Canst thou by searching find out God (search out the deep things of God)? Canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection? It is as high as heaven; what canst thou do? Deeper than hell (sheol); what canst thou know?’ (Job 11:7-8) And the answer to all of that my people is ‘Absolutely nothing!’ We can search all we want, but we’ll never find out the secrets of God, except those He releases to us in His Word. 

And Isaiah tells us in no uncertain terms: ‘Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding.’ (Is. 40:28) And if you didn’t know that before, now yuh know! (smile) 

And Bruh Paul puts it this way to the church at Rome: ‘O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgements, and his ways past finding out!’ (Rom. 11:33) But then in Bruh Paul’s remarkable style, he continues by quoting us some of the Old Testament Scriptures on the matter; ‘For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed (repaid) unto him again?’ (Rom. 11:34-35) 

And the answer to all of those questions is simply ‘NOBODY!’ ‘For of him, and through him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.’ (Rom. 11:36) Yes friends, as the scholars explain: ‘11:36. God is the source of all things – of him; God is the channel of all things – through him; God is the goal of all things – to him; and Man’s only proper response to God is to worship Him.’ And that’s for certain sure! I just wish that more of mankind could and would realize that! But for those of us who do, let’s go home declaring (yeah!) our Thursday Blessings which the Lord has graciously and generously given to us to do His earthly work. 

All together in strong, sincere voices: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed!  I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Now let’s go out and share those blessings with others, just as generously as the Lord shared them with us! Much LOVE!

…O…the incomparability…the majesty…and the supremacy…of our great God…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 October 2019 Matthew 5:20.

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

Oh, how I wish it wouldn’t rain…how I wish it wouldn’t rain…! An unfulfilled wish most likely, since they’ve forecasted lots of rain for this Halloween day. I believe they even considered postponing it until tomorrow due to the deluge expected. But in my opinion, they should just abolish the whole stupid, ungodly ritual because it’s just a celebration of evil and greed! When you have the ugliest, scariest and most inappropriate costumes for children; things like witches, ghouls, hobgoblins and the like being a big deal in the society, what does it teach them eh? And now there are also a whole lot of restrictions on what you can wear, what is culturally or religiously acceptable, that it makes a mockery of the whole thing. 

But what amazes me is we teach them that candy is bad for their health and well being, then we have a big celebration where they go out in the dangerous dark night to see who can collect the most candy! Who do you think eats it eh? The very same children who are taught that it’s bad for them. But I doubt it will be abolished anytime soon, even with it’s inherent dangers, since it strengthens the bottom line of the costume people, the candy makers and the dentists, politically powerful and monied groups in our society. 

That brings us to our Bit for this Halloween Thursday, very poignant and important words of Jesus to His listeners on the law, from the Sermon on the Mount. ‘For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case (by any means) enter into the kingdom of heaven.’ Now that was a heavy blow to those religious leaders for they were considered the creme de la creme of righteousness in their day. And the scholars obligingly explain. 

‘5:20. Because of the necessity of righteousness as a requirement to enter heaven, Jesus then declares that except their righteousness should exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees they could not enter heaven. The significance of this is seen in the fact that the Jews of Jesus’ day considered these people to be the most religious in all Israel. However, their religion was largely an outward show of self-righteousness. In communicating the depth of His message, Jesus used a series of contrasts between the outward behaviour demanded by the law and the inner attitude of the heart desired by God. Here we discover the practical application of the Christian character to true spiritual living. Here we see the gospel in action.’ 

And sadly, nothing much has changed to this day; there are still a lot of religious leaders; modern-day scribes and Pharisees who only offer lip service and outward show to the true tenets of Christianity. Meanwhile, their inner man is more attuned to the things of the law, of the world, than those of God. Here’s a list of the contrasts between living under the Law and living by the Spirit as provided by the scholars. ‘The Law says No murder, the Spirit, No anger. No Adultery…. No Lust. No Divorce… Commitment. No oath-taking… Speak the truth. No retaliation… Forgiveness. Hatred for your enemy (tradition allowed it) … LOVE for your enemy (commanded).’ 

Yes my faithful brethren, the Law isn’t basically wrong, but the demands of the Spirit carry us to a higher level of spirituality and righteousness. And it’s that high level we need to enter the kingdom of heaven. I didn’t say so, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ said it long ago, and nothing has happened since to change it. And after expounding our Bit to His listeners, Jesus then went on to individualize the stuff that we just wrote. He then taught on Anger, Adultery, Divorce, Oaths and LOVE for enemies. (Matt.5:21-48) 

Ah friends, it’s sad and rather unfortunate that we’re living in such a sinful and unrighteous society these days. No wonder we’re at such a low ebb, in ALL aspects of life. There’s absolutely no situation in which we can say we’re winning! Even the fools who are trying to throw God out of our society will eventually lose, though they seem to have the upper hand now. Please pay attention though to these momentous words of Cousin Sol: ‘Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach (shame or disgrace) to any people.’ (Prov.14:34) And the scholars explain: ‘14:34. National righteousness and national sin have opposite effects: exaltation versus reproach.’ No wonder we have national reproach, because our society is as sinful as eternity is long. 

And Bruh Paul made it clear to the church at Rome when he talked about zeal but no righteousness. ‘For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law of righteousness to every one that believeth.’ (Rom.10:3-4) And the scholars explain: ‘10:4. Christ is the end of the law: Israel mistook the purpose of the law. The law pointed to the righteousness that is attainable only by belief in Christ. Israel also mistook the scope of the law. The righteousness to which it pointed was universally available to all who responded to God’s revelation of Himself through the law. But by Paul’s time many had substituted works for faith. Rather than seeking redemption in God’s mercy, they pinned their hopes on their own religious achievement.’ 

And that’s still happening on too large a scale today my people. It’s true that faith without works is dead, (James 2:17) but works alone will get us nowhere either! Let’s remember that nuh and proceed to build up both our faith and works through righteousness in Christ Jesus. Now let’s go home declaring (yeh!) our enabling Thursday Blessings. As one, in strong voice and sincere sense of purpose. ‘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 let’s also remember that they are for generous sharing, not selfish hoarding. (smile) Much LOVE!

…without true righteousness…we shall never see God…

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