Todays Scrip-Bit 15 November 2018 Proverbs 3:25.

Proverbs 3:25.   Be not afraid of sudden fear (terror), neither of the desolation of (trouble from) the wicked, when it cometh.
 
Ah friends, I was just wondering what we should write about this morning, because I had nothing whatsoever in mind. But as always, I asked the Lord for some guidance, then opened the Good Book and shortly thereafter found something that He pointed me to. All Glory be to our great and wonderful God! 

Friends, you all wouldn’t know the pressure there could be in having to write the Bit everyday, but thankfully I don’t feel any because of the Lord’s great mercy and faithfulness. All I have to do is remember to get up and write it, and I’ve been doing it for so long now it’s come like a second nature. 

And if there is one thing I can testify to is the Lord’s ever-faithful faithfulness! (smile) He’s never let me down one day yet in the eleven years I’ve been writing the Bit. Granted, some days it might take a little longer than others to discover what He wants me to write about, but He always comes through – in His time! Bless His Holy name. 

That’s why I can testify to the fact that He never gives us a task and then not help us to accomplish it! So whatever He’s asked you to do today, instead of hemming and hawing, simply go to Him in all sincerity and ask for His help, He will only be too glad to give it. 

Now let’s see what He desires to share with us today from His word. More wise words from Cousin Sol: ‘Be not afraid of sudden fear (terror), neither of the desolation of (trouble from) the wicked, when it cometh.’ What words of strength and reassurance my brethren! 

And for those of you who are wondering why Cousin Sol gave that assurance. Here’s why: ‘For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken (caught).’ (Prov.3:26) Oh give our great and wonderful God some thanks and praise my believing brethren for his mercy and LOVING-kindness to we undeserving children of men! 

So many times in His word He assures us that we should not be afraid of what the wicked can do to us…Let’s hear some of them nuh to revitalize our faith. And I guess we can begin with this one from Bruh Paul to Timothy, which so many of us quote, but don’t seem to live by. 

‘For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7) Yes friends, that power to resist fear has been planted in every believer, it‘s then left up to each of us to water and nourish and nurture it so that it can grow into a strong and mature faith. 

Now hear the psalmist as he exalts the fearsome power of our God to all who sincerely trust and take refuge in Him: ‘He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust (take refuge): his truth shall be thy shield and buckler (a small shield). Thou shalt not be afraid for (of) the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; 

Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth (lays waste) at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come near thee…Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the Most High, thy habitation (dwelling place).’ (Ps.91:4-7,9) 

Yes my people, what security we have when we place our sincere trust in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! And Peter puts it this way: ‘And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and if ye suffer for righteousness sake, happy (blessed) are ye: and be not afraid of their terror (threats) neither be troubled; 

But sanctify (set apart) the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer (a defense) to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear (reverential awe):

Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation (conduct) in Christ. For it is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing than for evil doing.’ (1 Pet.3:13-17). 

Ah friends, I know that’s a mouthful, (smile) but all it’s basically saying is that if we are accosted about our faith, we should have a sincere and reverential answer for the hope we have in Christ, and to give it without offense. No need to get into any heated arguments. 

And if we do suffer at the hands of the wicked, better it be for doing good than doing bad, and sometimes we are asked to suffer under those circumstances as a testimony to others.

However, the Lord will eventually reward us for any ‘sufferation’ we undergo in His name. So let’s not be afraid to stand strong and steadfast in the faith and assurance of our Lord God, the Creator and Controller of this great universe, for whatsoever He has promised, He will deliver! Amen! 

And now it’s time to declare our Thursday Blessings; blessings that our most magnanimous God has so generously bestowed on us. And please remember that a blessing is not a blessing until it’s declared over someone or something.

So altogether now, in strong voice and sincerity of heart: ‘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 those blessings were not meant for us to selfishly hoard, but to also generously dole out to others like the Lord has generously doled them out to us. Much LOVE!

…we all need strong faith…but unfortunately…a strong faith can only be acquired through some ‘sufferation’…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 November 2018 Matthew 8:26.

Matthew 8:26:   And he saith unto them, why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.

Well here we are again on a Sunday morning, hopefully getting ready to visit, or having already visited the Lord’s sanctuary to get our reassurance and strengthening for the upcoming week, through praise, worship, fellowship and hearing the Lord’s word.

And I like Bruh Paul’s reasoning in Romans 10, re those calling on the name of the Lord shall be saved, especially when he asks: ‘how can they hear without a preacher?’ (Rom.10:14) That’s why we have preachers! (smile) 

But before we hear the word, let’s get into some hearty praise and worship to soften our stony hearts and make them more receptive to the Lord’s dialogue. And today’s song of praise is one we all know and LOVE, titled, ‘Put Your Hand in the Hand.’

According to Wikipedia, it ‘is a gospel pop song composed by Gene MacLellan and first recorded by Canadian singer Anne Murray from her third studio album ‘Honey, Wheat and Laughter.’ 

Wow! I knew that our very own Canadian Songbird from down the East coast had sung it, but I never knew she was the first to record it. And since then it’s been recorded numerous times by all kinds of singers and musicians.

Today, we’re going to send up a blazing, brilliant, harmonious and magnificent rendition to our heavenly Father, showing our sincere gratitude for all that He’s done for us through His Son, and our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. 

Now let’s bring tears of joy to the eyes and hearts of those in heaven as we sing: (Chorus: ‘Put your hand in the hand of the man who stilled the water. Put your hand in the hand of the man who calmed the sea. Take a look at yourself, and you can look at others differently. Put your hand in the hand of the man from Galilee.) 

Every time I look into the Holy Book, I wanna tremble. When I read the part where the carpenter cleared the temple See those buyers and the sellers were no different fellas Than what you and I profess to be. And it causes me shame to know that man is not what he should be. (Chorus: Put your hand in the hand…) 

Hey, my mama taught me how to pray, before I reached the age of seven When I’m down on my knees, hey, I’m close to heaven. My daddy lived his life with two kids and a wife and you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do But he showed me enough of what it takes to see you through 

This is what he used to tell me… Put your hand in the hand of the man who stilled the water Put your hand in the hand of the man who calmed the sea Ya got’a take a good look at yourself, then you can look at others differently Put your hand in the hand of the man from Galilee.’ 

Magnifico my brethren, Magnifico! The eyes in heaven are all filled with tears of joy! Glory be! And believe you me, that rendition was so sweet that the Father was singing along with us, not to mention that He is also grateful for the Son’s unwavering obedience in His plan to save our undeserving souls.  

Now hear the word. The story goes like this: ‘And when he (Jesus) was entered into a ship, his disciples followed him. And behold there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he (Jesus) was asleep. And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us, we perish. 

And he saith unto them, why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!’ (Matt.8:23-27) 

The answer to that question is not rocket science friends, but is quite simple: the winds and the sea obey Him because He made them and still controls them! And if you don’t believe me, then listen to the words of the psalmist:

‘They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. 

They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble. They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wit’s end (don’t know what to do)

Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, and he bringeth them out of their distresses. He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then are they glad because they be quiet; so he bringeth them unto their desired haven.’ (Ps.107:23-30) 

 Yes friends the seafarers know the Lord’s power, His all-around control of the wind and the sea, so they know to look to Him for succour in time of need. My brethren, we too should realize and acknowledge the Lord’s omnipotence and majesty and revere Him, surrender our lives, put our sincere trust in Him and His awesome Son, the man from Galilee, who rebuked the winds and the waves and caused them to be calm.

So let’s wise up and take His hand nuh; and hold it very tightly too, don’t ever let go!  It’s a no-brainer my people; the height of wisdom! Much LOVE!

..whose hand would you prefer to hold over Jesus’ eh…NOBODY’S…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 October 2018 Joshua 1:9.

Joshua 1:9.    Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

Ah mih people, instead of getting later, the Bits seem to be getting earlier! (smile) And today’s reason is not a bout of insomnia, but because I have to catch and early bus to Kingston. Oh yes, I am going back to the big city! I discovered a big sister from another branch of the family and we’re going to hold another gathering! Wow! Don’t I just LOVE the family gatherings, although this one will be mostly of old friends whom I have not seen since I left the university almost fifty years ago. 

Yes, I know, when you start bandying around terms like a half century, you must be getting on in age. But chuh! Age is simply how you feel, and believe me the ole fella is young. Hn! After the work out they put me through yesterday, I must be a young pup! Brother! They took me out of here about ten thirty in the morning and didn’t bring me back until seven in the evening…but it was an exceedingly good time. 

Hn, hn! I can say that now, but when I was hiking through the nature trail, through brush and bramble, across a fast-flowing stream on rocks, or makeshift boardwalks, holding on to a rope, climbing the high hills, on narrow, rough tracks, swimming in the cold, deep pools, feeling the hips and back resisting the inconvenience, I didn’t think it was so great. And at one time we just kept going up higher and higher, ostensibly towards the waterfall, and I kept asking ‘when are we going to reach it eh?’ 

But we had two wonderful young men as guides, who looked after us admirably. One looked after me in particular because all the others (three women) were more mobile than me, and he kept telling me that my safety was his only concern, and if anything happened to me, he would put me on his back and carry me back. But being a stubborn ole coot, I tried resisting his help in some difficult places. Thanks Mikey! Your professionalism and encouragement played and enormous part in me making it all the way up. 

However, I did not climb the waterfall, I know my limitations. (smile) I just stopped and swam in the pool at the bottom and watched other younger and more mobile specimens clamber up its rocky walls. Twenty years ago, that would be a no brainer, as I did at Dunns’ River Falls. But age does take its toll on the body. 

And after reaching the top, and being promised and easier path back, we discovered that they were repairing that path, so we had to come back the same way we went. But as always, the trip back never seems as laborious as the trip out and we made some good time back. Had a coconut water along the way, as well as being offered some samples of herb, which I refused, but it did smell rich and mouthwatering! (smile) What a way times have changed eh! (smile). 

And if yuh think that once we got back down things were easy, think again! We then had to climb some fifty something concrete steps to get back to the car and the main road. And yuh know what? The duchess took it all in stride, looking out for her husband’s safety all the way. ‘Be careful here dear, Watch your step, it’s steep here. Hold on to this railing, Yuh okay? Yuh think you can make it. Yuh not tired’ and on and on. But though I pretended umbrage, I appreciated the concern. 

 Oh they even bought me a ‘Blue Hole’ T-Shirt. That’s the name of the place, located on the northern outskirts of the tourist mecca of Ocho Rios. It was advertised as a warm mineral spring, but it turned out to be a cold river bath. But not to worry, a fine time was had by all, The Lord carried me on His strong, massive shoulders most of the way, so I was definitely in good hands, better than All State! (smile) 

And as we began our journey back, I began asking for mannish water. After asking a couple of people, we finally found a restaurant that had cow-foot soup. Praise the Lord! And brother, was it ever good! I couldn’t even finish the bowl, had to carry back some. Hope I can have it for breakfast this morning. As I keep saying, I’m here to recuperate, to get stronger, and those kinds of foods are what I need to strengthen the innards. (smile) 

Then the traffic back was disgusting, especially in Mo Bay, where we had to go down to the Bus Depot and pay the fare so we could get a decent discount. And would you believe it, the lady at the Bus Depot didn’t believe that the duchess and I were seniors, had to see our I.D. to believe it. 

And most important of all my people, is that I’m not feeling any real repercussions from the extreme exertion. As they, what doesn’t kill you, will strengthen you. It hasn’t killed me, so let’s hope it will do the latter. And what better scripture to be our Bit today, than the Lord’s eternal words of assurance to Joshua. ‘Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.’ 

With such powerful assurance friends, how could I be anything but strong and courageous yesterday eh? And as always, our great and faithful God kept His promise and looked after me…admirably too. So let’s go home now loudly and sincerely declaring our Thursday Blessings, being truly thankful for them as we ought to. 

Altogether now. ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

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

And if we’re faithful followers, we’ll now go out and share those amazing and awesome blessings with others, as Jesus so greatly desires. Much LOVE!

…true trust and faith in Jesus…can truly lead one to leap over one’s mountains…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 September 2018 Matthew 10:29.

Matthew 10:29.    Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall to the ground without your Father.  

 

I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord.’ (Ps.122:1) Oh what a wonderful idea that is this Sunday morning my brethren, the first day of autumn in the abnormal year of 2018! Bruh David was ever so glad for that invitation to go to the Lord’s sanctuary because he knew the amazing benefits it produced. 

And going to God’s house still produces wonderful benefits to this day my people! Where else can you get the peace and joy, confidence and reassurance that come from a session of praise and thanksgiving, and hearing the Lord’s word being read and feeling it seeping into the deepest recesses of your hurting heart? Nowhere else friends, but in a place where the Lord reigns supreme! 
And today we’re going to open with a Gospel Hymn written in 1905 by Civilla D. Martin and composer Charles H. Gabriel. ‘It is most associated with actress singer Ethel Waters who used the title for her autobiography. Mahalia Jackson’s recording of the song was honoured with the Grammy Hall of Fame Award in 2010.’ Most of us though, might be more familiar with the Kirk Franklin version of a few years ago. And the name of that revered and moving song is ‘His Eye is on the Sparrow.’ 

So without further ado, let’s reach deep down into our souls and produce a real soulful version that will bring tears to the eyes of heaven. As one now: ‘Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come, Why should my heart be lonely, and long for heav’n and home, When Jesus is my portion? My constant Friend is He: His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me. His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me 

(Refrain: I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free, for His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.) “Let not your heart be troubled,”  His tender word I hear, and resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears; Though by the path He leadeth, but one step I may see; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me. (Refrain: I sing…) 

Whenever I am tempted, whenever clouds arise, When songs give place to sighing, when hope within me dies, I draw closer to Him, from care he sets me free; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me. (Refrain: I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free, For His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.’ (Repeat). 

What a marvellous song my fellow believers! And it’s also filled with God-awesome truth! Everything it says is true! Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is constantly looking out for us, just like He’s doing for the sparrows of this world. And when life gets rough and tough we can simply go to Him and ask for comfort and reassurance…and we’ll get it. Glory to God! 

 

The song was obviously inspired by words from the scriptures. Hear these reassuring words of Jesus in our Bit: ‘Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall to the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.’ (Matt.10:29-31) That’s the gospel truth friends! 

We are indeed more important than the birds of the air, as Jesus says earlier on: ‘Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?’ (Matt.6:26) Ah mih people, we are indeed higher up the totem pole that the birds and other animals, which the Lord looks after so faithfully, so why won’t He look after us in the same, or even better manner eh? No reason whatsoever! We just have to have faith, trust in and surrender our lives to Him. 

 

Now listen to this testimony and let it uplift our lives, because only a few of us can, or will ever personally know this level of suffering. Civilla Martin, who wrote the lyrics, claimed this story as her inspiration. ‘Early in the spring of 1905, my husband and I were sojourning in Elmira, New York. We contracted a deep friendship for a couple by the name of Mr. and Mrs. Doolittle – true saints of God. 

Mrs. Doolittle had been bedridden for night twenty years. Her husband was an incurable cripple who had to propel himself to and from his business in a wheel chair. Despite their afflictions, they lived happy Christian lives, bringing inspiration and comfort to all who knew them. One day while we were visiting with the Doolittle’s, my husband commented on their bright hopefulness and asked them for the secret of it. 

 

Mrs. Doolittle’s reply was simple: “His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.” The beauty of this simple expression of boundless faith gripped the hearts of Dr. Martin and me. The hymn “His Eye Is on the Sparrow” was the outcome of that experience.’ 

And all God’s people declared a loud and proud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord!’ Yes friends, that is indeed what you call boundless faith! Not too many of us would go through such difficulties today with such aplomb, even though we now have many more amenities to alleviate that kind of suffering.  

 

And Bruh David adds his two cents worth (smile) Of the Lord he says: ‘I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way in which thou shalt go: I will guide the with mine eye… Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.’ (Ps.32:8, 11)Yes friends, we couldn’t get any better advice on this the Lord’s Day, so let’s be wise and take it nuh. Much LOVE!

…man is God’s greatest creation…and He certainly treats us like such…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 May 2018 Matthew 9:29.

Matthew 9:29.    According to your faith be it unto you.

Well friends, it’s the big day, Sunday, the time we make our way to the Lord’s sanctuary to fellowship and worship and receive reassurance and confidence in our faith walk.  Unfortunately I couldn’t make it today because of my illness, but my Pastor, Fr. Jeff has promised to come and visit and give me communion after church. So I’m still in the loop. (smile) 

Anyway, as usual, let’s get prepared to hear the word, soften our hearts, by offering up some praise and worship to heaven. And today we’ll offer up that old spiritual song from the movie ‘Student Prince,’ made famous by Mario Lanza. It’s called ‘I’ll walk with God,’ and is such a beautiful way of reaffirming our faith, in this most appropriate time of spring rebirth and a troubled world. 

Let’s sing my brethren, with sincere hearts and strong lungs. ‘I’ll walk with God from this day on. His helping hand I’ll lean upon. This is my prayer, my humble plea, May the Lord be ever with me. There is no death, tho’ eyes grow dim. There is no fear when I’m near to Him. I’ll lean on Him forever And He’ll forsake me never. 

He will not fail me As long as my faith is strong, Whatever road I may walk along. I’ll walk with God, I’ll take His hand. I’ll talk with God, He’ll understand. I’ll pray to Him, each day to Him And He’ll hear the words that I say. His hand will guide my throne and rod And I’ll never walk alone While I walk with God.’ 

And is all of that ever so true my people! If we walk faithfully with God, He’ll look after us. That’s his promise! And He doesn’t ever break promises. I particularly like that last line, about I’ll never walk alone, while I walk with Him. Glory be people! What an awesome statement of truth! 

But first, before all of the above can happen, we need to have the faith to submit, to completely surrender our lives to Him, because God wants to be involved in EVERY aspect of our lives. He can’t be included in some things and not in others. And that’s where the problems come in. We either don’t have faith, or we suffer from weak faith, but a sincere and successful walk with God requires strong faith. 

Oh I know that faith is a process, a continuum along which we grow, from glory to glory, but we have to make the solid, and conscious commitment to do it. We can’t be wishy- washy and stop, or faint as soon as problems arise, because its those same problems that cause our faith to grow. Yeh friends, unfortunately faith only grows by experiencing God’s LOVE, mercy and favour at work in our lives, especially during the rough periods. 

And to show that I know what I’m talking about (smile) listen to this testimony. It’s been a year and half since I’ve been diagnosed with head and heart problems, and in the natural, you’d expect them to be fixed much sooner than they have been. 

Oh, only the head problem has been fixed so far, and that just last week, the heart still remains an enigma. I went into the hospital a month ago to fix the heart problem, but some other thing cropped up and they changed their minds. I’m still waiting to hear from them. 

But what amazes me is that everybody claimed I was so sick, but yet they had me traipsing from hospital to doctor to heart clinic and back again, taking all different kinds of medication and nothing was getting done. Now I could have given up hope and said, ‘Chuh! Forget all this nonsense yes!’ 

But I didn’t, because I’ve been walking with God long enough now to understand that He will keep His promise to work everything out for our good, but in His own time. That’s the cut-tail part about walking with God; in His own time. And unfortunately, His time is seldom our time. He uses these opportunities to grow our faith. 

So if you’re going through some tough and dark times, please, please don’t give up or lose faith. The Lord WILL see you through eventually. He’s just checking to see if you’re truly into Him, as you claim. It isn’t easy people, but our God is faithful, that much I can tell you for sure. And if He sees that you’re willing to take up your cross and walk with Him, without a doubt, He’ll help you to carry it, just like He sent Simon the Cyrene, to help Jesus carry His on that fateful day. (smile) 

He will NEVER leave you in the lurch. And until you sincerely believe that, your faith won’t grow. If you want to work for God, you better had be prepared to suffer stuff, because he doesn’t want people without the necessary experiencing telling His people a whole set of Anansi stories, on subjects they know nothing about. That’s why, most of the stuff I tell you, I can vouch for it from personal experience. 

And I have to chuckle here, because this was never meant to be a personal testimony, but that’s what the Lord apparently wanted. And who am I to say him nay eh? (smile) 

And we’ll end with this most pertinent scripture, when two blind men came to Jesus to receive their sight. ‘And when he was come into the house, the blind men came to him: and Jesus saith unto them, Believe ye that I am able to do this? They said unto him, Yea, Lord. Then touched he their eyes, saying, According to your faith be it unto you.’ (Matt.9:28-29) 

Yes friends, according to the level of our faith, the Lord will work in our lives. It’s as simple as that. He’ll meet us at whatever point we are, but we have to first believe that He can do what He’s promised. That’s what faith is all about. Much LOVE!

…faith is believing without seeing…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 April 2018 Matthew 10:28.

Matthew 10:28.    And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Well hello there mih Scrip-Bit family! How goes it with you all this rainy day Thursday eh? I hope it goes better with you than with me, because the ole fella is shaking it a tad rough after spending the last two days running around in the concrete jungle called Toronto for doctor’s appointments and tests. That’s why the last two Bits were so early. (smile) 

But what a mish mash that place is; the roads are full of potholes, the traffic jams are constant…! Brother! I don’t see how people can handle that ridiculous commute for five days every week nuh. But I guess you have to do what you have to do to make a living. 

The good news though my brethren, is that the Lord’s generosity has not stopped flowing…and it never will! His ongoing showering of grace, mercy, LOVE and forgiveness on His people is guaranteed for all time. So though we may occasionally face adversity and rough times, we know for sure that our heavenly Father is right in the thick of it with us, and has promised to bring us out better than before. 

Glory to God my brethren! What a wonderful God we serve and worship! Give Him some thanks and praise nuh! 

And I just noticed an interesting and rather appropriate quote here amongst the confusion of papers on the desk in front of me. It’s attributed to one Alex Boyer, and it says: ‘When the body gets tired, you fight with your soul.’ 

And isn’t that the living truth friends! The soul is much stronger than the body, though the body leads in the fight for survival. And when the body fails or falters, it’s the soul’s job, the spiritual aspect of our humanity, to take up the battle and lead us to victory in Jesus’ name. 

I guess that’s why Jesus gave His disciples the fateful warning found in Today’s Bit. ‘And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.’ Ah friends, what wise and wonderful advice from our Saviour Himself; advice that is also applicable to us today. 

Hear how the scholars explain that section. ‘10:25-31. Beelzebub refers to Satan himself, the ultimate evil spirit. The disciples are told to fear…not. The disciples’ enemies can only take their physical lives, which cannot prevent their blessed resurrection to life everlasting. 

In other words, Jesus reminded them that it was more important to fear Him who had authority over the soul as well as over the body and who can bring both to eternal condemnation in hell (Gr. Gehenna). Notice that God is the One who has authority to cast men into hell, and not Satan, who will himself be ultimately cast into everlasting fire.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, it’s only Almighty God; our Creator, Controller and Provider who can sentence us to a lifetime of hell fire and damnation! And I’m sure none of us want to suffer that terrible fate. Therefore, we need to live a life down here on earth that is subject to His law and will, if we want to see His glorious face at the end of our earthly sojourn. 

Listen to how Jesus continues His warning to the disciples. ‘Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing (1/16 of a denarius – a penny)? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.’ (Matt.10:29:-31) 

Oh mih breddren, what a glorious reassurance that is from our Master! We are God’s greatest creation; worth more than many sparrows, and even the very hairs on our head are numbered. Wow! The Lord knows it all and is committed to keeping us together, even though we sometimes falter. 

However, these next two verses are the ones that will cement His decision. ‘Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.10:32-33) There it is in black and white my people! If you deny Christ, He will deny you before His heavenly Father. 

And the scholars offer this good explanation. ’10:32-37. Confess me means “Acknowledge that you belong to me.” In reality, secret discipleship is a practical impossibility. Jesus constantly called for an open confession of Himself by His followers. That our confession is to be before men clearly indicates that a public confession of true Christian faith is a virtual necessity. 

The warning whosoever shall deny me is a comprehensive historical aorist tense, (hn!) referring not to one moment of denial (such as Peter’s), but to an entire lifelong resistance to Christ. Therefore a single act of denial does not make one unworthy of being a disciple, but a refusal to confess Christ at all eliminates one from being a true follower of Jesus Christ.’  

So all of us who claim to belong to Christ, but refuse to acknowledge Him in public, yuh better had think again! But for those of us who gladly acknowledge Him in public and enjoy His wonderful company, let’s go home now declaring the manifold grace and mercy we enjoy in our Thursday Blessings. 

In strong and sincere voice now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

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

Yeh mih people all of that is ours, and not just to hoard for ourselves, but to share generously with the less fortunate. So let’s go out and do that now nuh. Much LOVE!

…a true Christian is one…who is not afraid or ashamed to tell the world…and also show the world…that he is living and dying for Christ…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 March 2018 Romans 8:31.

Romans 8:31.    What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

Ah friends, as Prince Buster, the famed Jamaican singer said in his song so long ago; ‘It was a rough night last night…’ but not in the sexual way that he meant it. (smile) I spent the night in the Toronto General Hospital in preparation for doing a heart assisted implant today, that would help the ole ticker operate more functionally than it’s currently doing. 

Everything else was okay except the bed. Chuh! These new-fangled hospital beds are so expensive and can do everything except give you a restful night’s sleep. I found it too hard to lie on and very difficult to get up from. And brother…it just kills my back! 

But there’s always a good and bad side to every story…Hn! The good side is that the Lord might have intervened miraculously on the ole fella’s behalf. Yeh friends, if the findings are true, then heavenly intervention was indeed involved. And you must be wondering what I’m being so obtuse and obscure about. (smile)

Well there seems to be something called ‘ejection fraction’ that shows how the heart is pumping the blood and my figures were low to begin with and over the past year haven’t improved a whole lot which necessitated implanting the device. 

However, yesterday, when they did the usual tests, my figures shot up so remarkably that they had to stop and review the situation. That’s why I’m talking about miracles. 

Hold down now people, hold down… there’s a new twist to the story now. I just spoke to the doctor about the surgery and they have decided to postpone it, to err on the side of caution, until they do some other tests that will give them a clearer picture. Only problem is it takes months to get that done. 

But per his reasoning, if my heart has really improved, then I should be okay. Seems though that there are two different implants for the situation and until they are sure of what’s happening it doesn’t make sense to do any surgery which could complicate matters later on. 

Ah Lord eh! When it’s not one thing, it’s certainly another. Life is always full of surprises, and who knows when they will crop up. But when you’re walking with Almighty God, He gives you the ability to handle all that comes against you. 

Hence the awesome and always encouraging words of our Bit. ‘What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?’ Not a single soul, for our God will fight them off on our behalf! 

Glory to God my fellow believers! Though He allows us to go through all sorts of stuff, ultimately, He uses everything for our good, as Bruh Paul says a few verses earlier. ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.’ (Rom.8:28) We couldn’t ask for more than that. 

And furthermore, Bruh Paul clarifies our Bit by reassuring us. ‘He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?’ (Rom.8:32) Yeh friends, if the Lord went to that length to sacrifice His only Son for us, why wouldn’t He freely give us lesser things eh? None whatsoever! 

Thus, Bruh Paul continues later on: ‘Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us.’ (Rom.8:35-37) 

Oh my people, we are so blessed to have the Lord God of Hosts as our Guide and Protector, that we need nothing or no one else to advocate for us. No wonder Bruh Paul ends this remarkable chapter with these wise, wonderful and reassuring words. ‘For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, not things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the LOVE of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ (Rom.8:38-39) 

Yes precious people of God, NOTHING in this world can separate us from God’s LOVE! Why? As the scholars explain. ’38-39. We cannot be separated from God’s LOVE, because it is set forth in a person who is God Himself, Jesus Christ, our Saviour. God’s desire to redeem believers cannot be frustrated, because He is infinitely greater than any potential enemy. His plan will be realized because it is His purpose (cf. v.28).’ 

So friends, with all that reassurance let’s go home with bountiful feelings, on this rainy morning in Toronto, heartily declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In full voice now: ‘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.’ 

Now let’s go out and do just that. Much LOVE!

…with God on our side…we should be afraid of nothing…    

P.S. Oh friends, sorry the Bit is so late, I never got to finish it at the hospital and I’m just getting home. It’s just been one of those days. Hope it makes some kind of sense. (smile) Much Love!

 

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