Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 November 2013 Genesis 21:1.

Genesis 21:1.   And the Lord visited Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did unto Sarah as he had spoken.
 
Oh Friends, what our world needs now is LOVE, sweet LOVE! Not just for some, for a favoured few, but for everyone, for all and sundry! It’s the only thing that there’s too little of.
 
Most definitely my people! Our world badly, most desperately needs lots more LOVE, as the words of that old song so rightly declare. And if you look closely at our problems, you’ll discover that the majority of them are derived from, or arise from the lack thereof, or absence of LOVE.
 
And what is this LOVE, you ask? Well according to this definition, which I believe I got from Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley), ‘LOVE is the unselfish, sacrificial giving of oneself.’
 
And therein lies the rub my brethren; ‘the unselfish, sacrificial giving!’ Hn! Our world is anything but unselfish and sacrificial, more like selfish and non-sacrificial. 
 
And when we think of unselfish and sacrificial giving the first person that comes to mind is obviously our Lord and Saviour Jesus, for He was so unselfish that He sacrificed His sinless life for us; a bunch of ingrates, flagrantly committing abominable sins.
 
And that’s what true LOVE is all about Friends! We don’t necessarily have to go to the lengths that Jesus did and sacrifice our physical lives for others, but our sacrifices must come from actions like praying for, giving and helping those in need, even though we might also be needy and hurting.
 
That brings to mind the latest natural disaster to hit our world, and one fairly close to home too. We’re talking about the serious tornadoes and thunderstorms that yesterday lashed the U.S Midwest and parts of Southern Ontario and Quebec. There have been some deaths, lots of destruction, and lots of people without power or shelter.
 
So please let’s pray for them in their time of need, and also contribute whatever we can to assist them in rebuilding their lives and homes. That’s the true reality of LOVE, my fellow believers!
 
Now turning to our Bit: ‘And the Lord visited Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did unto Sarah as he had spoken.’
 
Oh my brethren, those are words which ought to build enormous hope and faith in our souls! Remember God’s promise from yesterday? ‘And he said, I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son…. Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.’ (Gen 18:10,14)
 
So now the Lord, faithful as ever, returns as He had promised. And what happens? What else but what He promised? ‘For Sarah conceived, and bare Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him. And Abraham called the name of his son that was born unto him, whom Sarah bare to him, Isaac (lit. Laughter).
 
And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac being eight days old, as God had commanded him. And Abraham was a hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him. And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh (lit. made laughter for me), so that all that hear will laugh with me.
 
And she said, Who would have said unto Abraham, that Sarah should have given children suck (nurse children)? for I have borne him a son in his old age. And the child grew, and was weaned: and Abraham made a great feast the same day that Isaac was weaned.’ (Gen.21:2-8)
 
Ah mih people, what other supposed gods keep their word, their promises, like ours eh? NONE WHATSOEVER! Because they are all dead, inanimate objects, some even man-made. Whereas our God is the ONE AND ONLY TRUE GOD, A LIVING DEITY, faithfully looking over His remarkable creation, our universe, and His unique creation, mankind. What could be better than that eh Friends? Nothing really!
 
Please note Friends, that Abraham circumcised Isaac eight days after his birth, in keeping with the covenant sign he had made with God.
 
Now a couple notes from the scholars. The first says: ‘Thou shalt call his name Isaac: The name means “He laughs” and was to serve as a reminder to Abraham of the unlikely means by which he was brought into the world, and his response in 17:17, and Sarah’s reaction in 18:12′
 
Yuh see Friends, how our God can be sweet but also devious, doing things to remind us of our failures and misgivings. So in the name Isaac, Sarah and Abraham would forever remember their doubt and laughter when the Lord promised them a son in their old age.
 
However, as the scholars further state: ’21:3: Isaac was the miraculously born son of Abraham and Sarah and was the forefather of the Jews. Both Abraham (17:17) and Sarah (18:12) laughed at the promise of a son in their old age, but later laughed for joy at his birth (vv.1-8). He represented the ancestral line of the promised Messiah.’
 
That my Friends, is the wonder of our amazing and most awesome God! He always wraps up our doubtful and faithless moments in times of joy! So how and why we don’t truly trust Him, I just can’t understand. That’s simply foolishness, ignorance of the highest order on our part my brethren!
 
Anyway, it’s time to close. I surely hope that we have gained some good insights into both the workings of our great God and the truthfulness of His Word.
 
So let’s ponder it all and thereby try to increase our hope, faith and trust in Almighty God to a point of total surrender. For therein lies the ultimate expression of true wisdom, my people! Much LOVE!
 
…the fool says in his heart…there is no God…pure foolishness that…

 
     
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 September 2013 Isaiah 54:17

Isaiah 54:17.   No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgement thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of (from) me.
 
Oh Friends, it seems like I owe my poor, departed mother another apology on this Sunday morning, the first day of September 2013. Not only did it take me almost two years to go and visit her, it seems that I was so taken up with T&T’s Independence celebrations yesterday, that I failed to mention it was also the second anniversary of her going to be with the Lord. I guess the ole fella’s simply showing his age and human frailty. (smile)
 
Thanks for reminding me Di, although as I told you, it wasn’t a complete forgetting, because the flowers on the altar at church today will be donated in her memory. And you know Mols sugar, that whatever nonsense or mistakes your Sonny Boy might make, he will NEVER forget you!
 
How could I eh, after the wonderful relationship we shared for sixty something years, especially since it was an experience chocked full of LOVE? For as Cousin Sol says in his Song, your banner over me was one of continuous LOVE! That’s not to say there weren’t some tumultuous times, but they were few and far between and never lasted very long.
 
And I’m not the only one who thinks that time is going by rather quickly, because everybody I tell that she’s been gone to Paradise for two years now can’t believe that it’s already been that long.
 
That’s why, my fellow believers, we can’t afford to dilly-dally with the work we’ve been commissioned to do for Christ here on earth, since we can be called home unexpectedly at any time. And what are we going to tell the Father when He asks why we didn’t do a better job eh, that we didn’t have enough time?
 
No Friends that’s not going to pass muster, because he’s going to turn back the clock and show us all the time we wasted being involved in sinful worldly endeavours, when we could have been spreading His Word.
 
That brings us to our Bit: ‘No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgement thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of (from) me.’
 
Now a lot of us claim that promise, and so we should, but as with a lot of other scriptures, we take them out of context, and only use the parts that seem beneficial, while conveniently forgetting the other aspects. And in this particular promise, we always seem to leave out the very important proviso: ‘This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord…’
 
Yes Friends, if you’re not a servant of the Lord, then that promise is null and void! And furthermore, whatever righteousness we might have, doesn’t come from our own efforts, but from the Lord God Jehovah, our Creator and Provider. And having straightened that out, (smile) let’s look at some scriptures that fortify that, no, those awesome promises, because we’re promised physical, vocal and spiritual protection with righteousness.
 
Wow! And people still refuse to believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! How unwise and foolish!
 
Isaiah himself tells us, re Ariel (Jerusalem; lit- lion of God) and her enemies, that though the Lord distresses Jerusalem, yet in the end:  ‘And the multitude of all the nations that fight against Ariel (Jerusalem), even all that fight against her and her munition (fortress), and that distress her, shall be as a dream of a night vision.
 
It shall even be as when a hungry man dreameth, and, behold, he eateth; but he awaketh, and his soul is empty: or as when a thirsty man dreameth, and, behold, he drinketh; but he awaketh, and, behold, he is faint, and his soul hath appetite (still craves): so shall the multitude of all the nations be, that fight against mount Zion.’ (Is.29:7-8)
 
And just before our Bit, Isaiah trills thus to God’s everlasting LOVE for the children of Israel, and those who follow His commandments.  ‘And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children. In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee.
 
Behold, they shall surely gather together, but not by me: whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake. Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument (weapon) for his work; and I have created the waster (destroyer) to destroy.’ (Is.54:13 -16)
 
So my people, there’s nothing to fear if we are walking obedient to God’s will, for as we’ve seen, He has promised on several occasions to protect us from our enemies when we so do. But unfortunately in these evil, turbulent and dangerous times, we have forsaken our God, have not even taught our children His Word. So what else can we expect but disaster, calamity and misery eh?
 
I don’t know if there’s ever been a time in man’s history, even during the two great wars, where mankind has been engaged in warfare on so many fronts at the same time. The scale of fighting might not be as large as in the two world wars, but we have many more nations inflamed in both external and internal strife. It’s possibly easier to pick out the few nations that are not involved in some kind of deadly strife.
 
Oh Friends, when are we ever going to learn eh? The Most High God created us, and though He’s given us freedom of choice, He still retains overall control. And He has continually warned us to keep His commandments, to serve and worship Him in sincerity and truth, while also providing glaring examples of the disastrous happenings disobedience can bring.
 
So it’s up to us now Friends to rally round the cross of Christ and try to drum some sense into the hard, stubborn minds of our fellowman. That is if we want our children and future generations to live in a somewhat peaceful world. 
 
And in closing, I know that some people try to knock the Old Testament, saying it’s out of date and of no use now. But my brethren, that’s a fallacy, pure foolishness, because the Old Testament is the setting, the foreshadowing, for fulfillment by the New Testament. And throughout the New Testament you’ll find Jesus and all the disciples and apostles quoting important scripture from the Old Testament.
 
So please don’t listen to anyone who tells you that nonsense! You can’t properly understand the New until you understand the Old, just like you cannot tell where you’re going, until you know where you’ve come from. Much LOVE!
 
…our earthly pilgrimage may be rough and rocky…but if we concentrate on walking with God…then though we occasionally stumble…we’ll never fall…that’s the Lord’s faithful promise…