Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 December 2019 John 1:14.

John 1:14.    ​And the Word was made (became) flesh, and dwelt among us. (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
 

And since there are only seven days in a week, it is expected that we’d come back to the first one, Sunday, in a mere seven days time. (smile) Yeh, I know it seems to come around too quickly for our liking, but that’s the way our wise and wonderful God made it, so we had better learn to accept it with a good attitude. I think that the Lord, since He created us, also knew that our batteries would only stay charged for that long, so we’d not be of much use to Him unless we were recharged every week. And that’s why He chose Sunday as a day of rest, for us to come and fellowship and worship, and praise and give thanks and be refreshed and recharged so that we can go out in the following week with restored confidence and enthusiasm. 

Anyway, enough palaver, (smile) let’s get the show on the road. And today we’re going to open with one of our favourite Christmas hymns: ‘Hark the Herald Angels Sing,’ that rousing number from the pen of the master hymnist, Charles Wesley (1707-1788). So what we waiting for eh? Let’s belt it out nuh, with strong harmonious voices and sincere hearts, as we think on Jesus’ First Coming at Christmas time. 

‘Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King: peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled!” Joyful, all ye nations, rise, join the triumph of the skies; with the angelic hosts proclaim, “Christ is born in Bethlehem!” (Refrain: Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King”) Christ, by highest heaven adored, Christ, the everlasting Lord, late in time behold him come, offspring of the Virgin’s womb: veiled in flesh the Godhead see; hail the ‘incarnate Deity, pleased with us in flesh to dwell, Jesus, our Immanuel. 

[Refrain] Hail the heaven-born Prince of Peace! Hail the Sun of Righteousness! Light and life to all he brings, risen with healing in his wings. Mild he lays his glory by, born that we no more may die, born to raise us from the earth, born to give us second birth. Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King” Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King” 

Ah friends, that was indeed a rousing rendition of that ageless ditty! Now I’m going to strive to show Wesley’s mastery of the scriptures by pointing out some of the timeless and important verses he used to cobble the whole thing together. We’ll take it stanza by stanza. In stanza one he relies on the words of Luke and 2 Corinthians. ‘And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men. ‘ (Luke 2:13-14) 

‘And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation. To wit (that is), that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them (forgiving them): and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.’ (2 Cor.5:18-19)  And was that ever a wonderful day when Christ was born and the Lord removed all hostility caused by sin, between Himself and mankind and thus allowed a renewed and right relationship! 

And for the second stanza, he uses verses like this one: ‘Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under elements of the world (the rudimentary teachings of the law). But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law. To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.’ (Gal. 4:3-5) In God’s time, He sent His Son, born of a woman, under the law, to die for our sins. 

And the second verse also reflects this potent scripture in John. ‘And the Word was made (became) flesh, and dwelt among us. (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.’ (John 1:14) Yes Friends, through Christ’s incarnation (miracle birth), the world saw the Father in all His glory, through the Son, who was both human and God at the same time! 

And we all know where the beginning of verse three hails from; the mighty prophecy of Isaiah: ‘For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.’ (Is. 9:6) And Malachi is also in there: ‘But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall (grow fat like stall fed calves).’ (Mal. 4:2) 

Then these words from Philippians also play a part in Wesley’s thinking. ‘Who being in the form of God thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made of himself no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.’ (Phil. 2:6-8) And this verse from 1 Peter also seems to have some bearing on the last stanza. ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively (living) hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.’ (1 Pet. 1:3) 

So my Christian brethren, you see that a good knowledge of God’s word is an invaluable tool in our lives! If Wesley didn’t know the Good Book as well as he did, he’d never be able to write such a marvellous and all-embracing hymn. That’s why we have to strive diligently to learn the Word, for only when it’s safely ensconced in our hearts, souls, bodies and minds, are we able to work wonders on God’s behalf. Much LOVE!

…Christmas is only the beginning…of our heavenly journey…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 September 2019 John 14:6.

John 14:6.    ​I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.
 

Sunday, oh Sunday…the day of the Lord! Time for our weekly fellowship friends, where we meet in the Lord’s house and renew our spiritual strength by giving Him thanks and praise, listening to His holy Word while encouraging and exhorting each other to LOVE and good deeds on Christ’s behalf! Blessed be His holy name, and we His beloved children! 

And today, as we do each Sunday, we’ll open the proceedings with a song of praise and thanksgiving; an 18th century hymn written by English clergyman, Philip Doddridge. In 1967 it was given a gospel arrangement and recorded by the Edwin Hawkins Singers…and the next thing you knew, it was an international hit! We know it as ‘Oh Happy Day!’ So let’s belt it out with the appropriate enthusiasm and ecstatic feeling, because when you’re a true believer in Christ, every day is a happy day, especially Sundays, when we gather and fellowship together in the Lord’s sanctuary, be it a majestic cathedral or a humble hovel. 

The important thing is not our physical surroundings but our spiritual togetherness, for as Christ so faithfully promised: ‘For wherever two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.’ (Matt.18:20) That means He’s right here in the midst of us this Sunday morning as we sing His praises and give Him exceeding thanks! So altogether now, as though we really mean it, with all the call and answers and everything. Let’s make it truly lively and happy. 

‘Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) When Jesus washed (When Jesus washed) Oh, when He washed (When Jesus washed) When Jesus washed (When Jesus washed) He washed my sins away (Oh, happy day) Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) (Repeat) He taught me how (He taught me how) To watch and fight and pray Watch and pray And live rejoicing every day Every day 

Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) When Jesus washed (When Jesus washed) Oh, when He washed (When Jesus washed) When Jesus washed (When Jesus washed) He washed my sins away (Oh, happy day) Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) He taught me how (He taught me how) To watch and fight and pray Watch and pray And live rejoicing every day (Good God) Every day Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) Oh, it’s a happy day (Oh, happy day) Oh, Lord (Oh, happy day) Mmm, good God (Oh, happy day) Oh yeah (Oh, happy day) Mmm, oh (Oh, happy day)!’ 

Oh friends, you better believe that it was the happiest day of mankind’s history when Jesus washed our abominable sins away! There’s nothing in this evil world to compare to that, because it means reconciliation with our heavenly Father, salvation and eternal life…Glory to God my faithful brethren! And on top of all that, Jesus taught us some real important things; like how to watch, to fight and pray, and live rejoicing every live long day! Bless His holy name my people! That’s why He’s the King of Kings and Lord of Lords! 

No one’s ever done anything greater for mankind in the annals of history. Wow! His selfless, sacrificial death on the cross of Calvary turned the whole world upside down, and His teachings have brought life and light to millions of lost and persecuted people. How can we ever thank Him eh? In truth, we can NEVER fully repay His awesome gesture, but we can satisfy His simple desires by surrendering our souls to Him, obeying His teachings, and believing in Him sufficiently to place our trust and the outcome of our eternal lives in His nail pierced hands. 

No wonder He could tell doubting Thomas in no uncertain terms: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.’ And that was no idle boast my people, for as the scholars point out: ’14:6. Jesus does not tell them about the way, nor does He show them the way. He does not even guide them along the way. He says He IS the way.’ And so indeed He is friends! If you don’t believe and trust and obey Him, then you’ll never see the Father’s face, or dwell with Him throughout eternity. That’s just a natural fact, for there are only two options in this life, the Beelzebub way, or the Jesus way. And believe me, you don’t want to go the way of the former. 

Oh sorry my brethren, how could I forget that Jesus was also the Light eh? Steups! John said it thus: ‘In him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended (apprehended) it not.’ (John 1:4-5). And the scholars tell us: ‘1:4-5. Life…light: See also 8:12; 9:5; 11:25; 14:6. In John’s writings, life represents salvation and deliverance through Christ, and light denotes Jesus’ revelation of God which calls men to accountability.’ 

And Jesus Himself said it thus: ‘Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth. While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of light.’ (John 12:35-36) Yes friends, we all know that we cannot walk safely or purposefully in darkness, but when there’s light…oh we can do so much!  And if Jesus is light, then it’s only logical to follow Him, if we want to walk in light. 

The long and short of the story then precious people, is that Jesus is the End All and Be All of this world! In fact He is the Way, the Truth, the Life and the Light! Glory be! So how can you not follow Him eh? That would be rather foolish of you; the height of stupidity…and I know that you’re neither foolish nor stupid! Much LOVE!

…the way to eternal life…can only be found by walking in the true Light…Jesus… 

P.S. Don’t worry about Friday and Saturday, we won’t lose any days. I just didn’t have the energy to write them yet, and I didn’t want to miss out on Sunday. (smile) Much LOVE!

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 May 2019 Philippians 2:5.

Philippians 2:5.   ​Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
 

Well hello there you beautiful people; my Scrip-Bit family and fellow saints of Jesus Christ! Oh, isn’t it great to be alive, especially on such a sunny morning? It surely is! There’s just something special about waking up to bright sunshine… How did John Denver describe it in his popular song, of the same name written by himself and Barry Manilow? 

‘Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy Sunshine in my eyes can make me cry Sunshine on the water looks so lovely Sunshine almost always makes me high!’ And isn’t that the awesome truth! Sunshine just has a wonderful and positive effect on us, like the light of Jesus when it shines upon us and brings us out of the darkness! 

Oh what a wonderful Being is our Jesus! Without Him we’re nothing! And the sooner we realize that tremendous truth, the better off we’ll all be! And that fact is most important in this Easter Season as we celebrate His death and then His triumphant resurrection from the grave, conquering the evil one in the process! For it’s that action that assures us of forgiveness, reconciliation and a family relationship with out heavenly Father, both now and forever more! 

Before that we were all useless sinners, headed for damnation and hellfire, but when Christ paid for our sins with the shedding of His holy blood and sacrifice of His sinless life on the cross of Calvary, then a whole new world suddenly opened to us! No wonder we sing and shout: ‘Glory Hallelujah! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Yes friends, that momentous occasion is possibly the most important aspect of our faith, because without it, all the good stuff now available to us would never have been. That’s why we ought to be so thankful and grateful to Jesus for His awesome and selfless sacrifice. He did not have to do it, but it was the Father’s wish, and He never wanted to do anything but what the Father desired. Wish that we could be so obedient…or even half so obedient! (smile) 

Jesus in His time on earth continually made it known that He was here to do the Father’s will, and that everything He did was what the Father wanted. Listen to some of His sayings on that subject. In speaking to the Jews about them being the children of Abraham: ‘Then answered the Jews and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil (demon)? Jesus answered, I have not a devil (demon); but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me. And I seek not mine own glory: there is ONE that seeketh and judgeth.’ (John 8:48-50)  

And again He said, ‘I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.’ (John 9:4) And again He told them: ‘Many good works have I showed you from the Father; for which of those works do ye stone me?’ (John 10:32) And furthermore: ‘If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.’ (John 10:37-38) 

Yes friends, Jesus never did anything in his honour, but always the Father’s. No wonder Bruh Paul could say to the Philippians: ‘Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made (coming) in the likeness of men: 

And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of (those) things in heaven, and (those) things in earth, and (those) things under the earth. And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.’ (Phil. 25:5-11) 

Oh my fellow believers, why can’t we see the great premium that our heavenly Father places on obedience to His holy will eh, and just obediently do what He desires of us! Look at how He exalted Jesus for being obedient to His will! It’s the same way He will exalt us for doing what He asks of us! 

But no, we claim to be believers, but constantly shy away from, and oftimes blatantly refuse to do God’s bidding. How does that endear us to him eh? How does that encourage Him to lift us up? It doesn’t at all. But we all desperately want to be lifted up… Ah mih people, our God is wonderful and all that, but He is also a stickler for obedience, and if we don’t obey, then we won’t enjoy all the blessings He’s got stored up for us. 

So please, let’s stop talking about obedience to God, and just do it nuh! We all know what we’re supposed to do, so please, let’s just do it. Let’s make what we say in our Wednesday Wail a reality and not simply lip service! All together now, let’s tell the world our position in Christ. ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! 

Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And if we’re obedient and sincere, then that future will indeed be rather glorious…more than we can ever ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…there’s nothing the Father LOVES more…than an obedient child…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 August 2018 Hebrews 7:24.

Hebrews 7:24.   But this man (Jesus), because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.

Aw shucks friends, Monday’s done – like dinner! (smile) And you’ll notice that we weren’t plagued by any of the evil forebodings we had conjured up in our minds for the first day of the workweek. Glory to God! It was all just peace and quiet, LOVE, joy and friendship in Jesus Christ! Mama Yo!

So let’s just keep it like that today too nuh. And the best way to start out is by declaring this mind-setting acclamation: ‘This is the day the Lord has made. We WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’  And having set our minds on that, we can now go out and bring it to pass. And to help us do that, here is this ‘Prayer for Success,’ from Gramps Schuller’s (Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. 

Please pray with me. ‘As I become a success with your help, Lord, let me never forget that what I am is more important than what I do. Faith stimulates success. Hope sustains success. LOVE sanctifies success. So I cannot and I dare not succeed without your power, peace, and pressure in my life, Jesus Christ. Amen!’ That’s all gospel truth my brethren! Without those wonderful and powerful attributes of Jesus we cannot succeed in this evil and ungodly world! 

And Gramps Schuller continues: ‘Be open. Be humble. Correctable. Educable. Then you will hear God’s voice. You will see God’s plan. Grab onto it, give it all you’ve got, and you will inherit the earth!’ More words of indisputable truth friends! 

And you know what hold us back more than anything else, is not that we don’t believe etc. etc. but we don’t give it all we’ve got for a sufficient length of time. Yes my people, we give up way too easily. Just think if Jesus had given up on us, what would have happened eh? 

It’s sure scary to think about no forgiveness of sins, no mercy or grace, no salvation, no eternal life. Hn! But He persisted, even though He knew the severe trials He would have to face. And because of His persistence, He overcame them. Likewise my brethren, we, His faithful followers ought to be persistent in all that we do in His name. 

And our Bit shows just how persistent and persevering is our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. ‘But this man (Jesus), because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.’ Yeh friends, all the other important priests died, and so did Jesus, but He rose from the dead and continues living and working on our behalf. 

‘Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.’ (Heb.7:25) Ah mih brethren, how blessed we are when we follow Jesus! He not only died to pay for our sins and help us be reconciled to the Father, but even now, He is sitting at the right hand of God interceding for us. 

He never stops pleading on our behalf! Glory to His Holy Name; the one that’s higher than any other, and the one that all must bow to! So are we as persevering and persistent in our work on His behalf? I don’t think so, otherwise the world would not be as evil and ungodly as it is, neither would there be so many people willing and pushing, even clamouring to have God removed from our society. 

And the reason for that ungodliness lie heavily both on the church as an organization and we individuals within it. And here I’ll just recall a couple scriptures on the persistence of the early church. ‘And they continued steadfastly in the apostles doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.’ (Acts 2:42) 

‘And they continuing daily with one accord (mind) in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat (food) with gladness and singleness of heart (simplicity). Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily, such as should be (were being) saved.’ (Acts 2:46-47) 

Friends, that just shows how fervent and persistent the early church was about living for Christ. Unfortunately though, in today’s feckless and spineless society, we seem to be more enamoured of the things of the world, than those of God. But that’s a fool’s wisdom my people. Now here is a passage of scripture I hope will encourage us to keep on keeping on regardless of what comes against us. 

‘Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance) the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction (hostility) of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint (discouraged) in your minds (souls).’ (Heb.12:1-3) 

Yeh friends, the times are evil and ungodly, and only as we believers are persistent and true in following Jesus, will, or can they ever change. So let’s think about all Jesus did for us, and is still doing, and make that extra effort to run our race for Him nuh, for His glory. 

And for those of us who have decided to do just that, let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice, with sincere hearts 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 exactly that, so we can effect, bring about, some badly needed godly change in our world. Much LOVE!

…the saints in heaven are watching…are cheering us on to run a good race…let’s not disappoint them nuh…

 


Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 March 2018 John 5:24.

John 5:24.   Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death into life.  

Aye friends, can you believe it’s Friday already; the day we’ve waited for since Monday? (smile) Yes it is. And nobody is more grateful than the ordinary workingman as he shows his appreciation in his song. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! That means the weekend is here at last! Wow! That’s music to the workingman’s ears! No more slavish work; no more abuse from insensitive and greedy men. 

Is we time now! We time to do as we please, and how we please. And who don’t like what we do, or how we do it…chuh pool! Too bad for them. But we going to eat and drink and party and carouse to our heart’s desire. Thank God for Fridays and the weekend yes!’ 

Ah mih people, the workingman is surely letting it all hang out, but unfortunately as believers in Christ, we can’t go to those lengths in our song. We need to pay attention to certain boundaries and limit our licentious and carousing behaviour, so that the enemy won’t be able to get a foothold in our souls, thus the difference between the workingman’s song and our Friday Chant. 

So let’s chant our Friday Chant now nuh, with commensurate enthusiasm to that of the workingman, and without too much envy, for you know mankind is always more enthusiastic and vociferous when he can let go and show his true lustful and carnal self. (smile) 

All together now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yeh friends, as believers we can relax, but not totally lose our focus because that’s when the evil enemy jumps right in and spoils the broth. And we certainly can’t allow him to do that, hence our more careful and controlled reaction to the weekend. 

Please remember too that next week is Holy Week, one of the most important times in our Christian faith, one that culminates in the celebration of Easter, where our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, sacrificed His sinless life for us on the cross at Calvary, then rose triumphantly from the grave, so that all who believe in Him can also be resurrected. 

Glory to God my people!  What a wonderful God we serve and worship! And don’t you ever forget it, for you do so at your own risk. For please note these memorable words of Jesus on the situation, found in our Bit. ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death into life.’ 

Yes my brethren, Jesus is clearly telling us here that if we hear His word and believe on the Father who sent Him, then we’ll be guaranteed eternal life. However, if we reject the Father, then it’s cleaners for us; condemnation, judgement, eternal separation from Him. And He backs up all of that with some of His most profound and prophetic words from an earlier chapter of John. 

‘For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.’ (John 3:16-18) 

There we have it friends, loud and clear, straight from Jesus Himself. So there can be no argument over the situation; believe in Him and the Father, and you’re saved. Don’t believe, and you’re condemned! Simple as that! 

I guess though that it’s too simple for some people. Just believing in Christ to be saved seems too easy for us mortals who glorify great works and accomplishments filled with much elbow grease and backbreaking labour. So how can such a magnificent thing be so easily accomplished eh? 

Our simple and finite minds can’t get around the generosity and magnanimity of our great God. His LOVE for us, His most wonderful creation, is so great that He can’t bear to be separated from us for ever, so in His ultimate wisdom, He offers us a FREE GIFT of reconciliation and salvation to prevent that most horrible of outcomes. 

Now a lot of us think that offer’s too good to be true, and usually offers like that are insincere, but remember, this is not an offer from deceitful and distrustful men, but from Almighty God, your Creator and Controller. He has no reason to lie or deceive you, but offers You His salvation from the wellspring of His amazing LOVE. 

And since He also gave you choice and freewill, it’s yours to accept or reject. But my brethren, I beg of you to accept God’s most generous offer, for it’s wisdom of the greatest magnitude. And if you don’t…then…unfortunately…crapaud smoke yuh pipe…! Much LOVE!

…the first movement in Christ’s magnificent symphony is…BELIEF…to enjoy it therefore…one must first…BELIEVE…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 February 2018 2 Corinthians 5:20.

2 Corinthians 5:20.   Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray (implore) you in Christ’s stead (behalf), be ye reconciled to God.

Oh friends, it’s a beautiful morning in my neck of the woods! Oh the snow is still on the ground, and it’s cold, but at least the Sun is shining brightly, and we know that the SON is always out there in all of His splendour, burning brightly to show us the way! Wow! That makes it a beautiful day indeed! 

And the workingman is also out there singing his song of freedom: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes! The massa really drive we hard this week boy! Don’t know what got in his craw nuh, but he was a real devil, more so than usual. But is one thing he can’t stop is it being Friday and therefore the weekend…and we free! 

Mama Mia! Is we time to do whatever we want with it now. And yuh better believe we going to do just that; whatever, whenever and however for the two lousy days we have off. What did the wise King Solomon say? Something about a man have a right to enjoy the fruits of his hard labour…Well we certainly going to enjoy them fruits this weekend! Thank the Lord for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Yeh mih people, I know that many of us are also thanking the Lord for Fridays and weekends after a hard spell at work this week. But as believers we have a different take on it; we don’t go to extremes, as the workingman likes to do. We have some boundaries set by our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ as reflected in our Friday Chant. 

Let’s declare it now in strong voice with sincere conviction nuh. ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen!’ 

Ah mih breddren, that’s more like it! We need to keep the work and excellent standards of Jesus uppermost in our minds at all times, for the enemy is always on the lookout for a letdown in our behaviour, so he can slip in and cause havoc. That coincides very well with the Daily Bread Thought for the Day, which says: ‘When others see us, may what they see, speak well of the Saviour.’ 

Oh friends, that’s our raison d’etre; our earthly purpose, our reason for living; to be worthwhile witnesses, ambassadors of Jesus, so that others will want to come to Him to lay down their heavy burdens and receive His free offer of grace, which then translates into salvation and eternal life! 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray (implore) you in Christ’s stead (behalf), be ye reconciled to God.’ Yeh friends, Bruh Paul is imploring the Corinthians to stick with the reconciliation they had recently received, and be good witnesses to others for Christ. 

Why? ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (creation): old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given us the ministry of reconciliation; 

To wit (that is), that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation…For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.’ (2 Cor.5:17-19; 21) 

Ah mih people, what a magnificent and magnanimous God we serve and worship! Just think about it nuh! The Lord, while we were yet sinners, sent His son to die on the cross for us, so that He could justify bringing us back into His fold, reconciling us to Himself. He forgave us of our sins, putting them all on His sinless Son, so He could make us righteous. Wow! Glory to God! 

Would any of us do that, take our righteous son and make Him a scapegoat, a sacrifice for a bunch of worthless, ungrateful sinners? Very unlikely! But that’s what God did for us, and it just shows the great and undying affection He has for us, His disobedient, rebellious children. 

So therefore, in light of all that; being a new creation, having our sins forgiven, being made righteous in Christ and reconciled to God, having a new status as a child of God and an heir with Christ, why is it so difficult for us to walk worthy of Christ eh? 

That should be a no-brainer friends! We ought to be so grateful for all He’s done for us, that being a good witness and ambassador for Him should just come naturally. 

So today, my believing brethren, like Bruh Paul implored the Corinthians, likewise, I am imploring us to come up strong for Christ, let people see His reflection in our everyday lives, be good examples of His grace and mercy. 

Yuh know we can talk a whole lotta talk, but it’s only through our life example that others will want to rush to His always open and ever-welcoming arms to lay down their burdens and take up their cross and follow Him. 

If we want Jesus to welcome us to heaven with a ‘well done, good and faithful servant,’ then that’s how we need to live our earthly lives. Much LOVE!

…truly living for Christ…means truly trying to be a good example to others…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 January 2018 1 John 4:17.

1 John 4:17.   Herein is our LOVE made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgement: because as he is, so are we in this world.

Bless the Lord, O my soul, for His bountiful kindness to the sinful children of men! Bless Him for the indescribable mercy that’s new every morning to undeserving men! Bless the Lord, O my soul, for the saving grace, the reconciliation He has provided for us through the awesome sacrifice of His Son Jesus Christ, so that we can believe on His Son and be called the children of God! 

Oh bless His holy name people, for the breath of life that He breathed into us when He so tenderly formed us from the clay of the ground! That was His awe-inspiring LOVE that He placed in us. And even though we’ve turned away from Him, He has not turned away from us, because that LOVE is unconditional and eternal, needing nothing from us, but to come to Him, just as we are, in whatever shape we’re in, and we’ll receive, with no questions asked, His fatherly care and all the comforts of home. 

And finally, bless the Lord, O my soul, for that amazing thing called forgiveness! That miraculous situation where the Lord forgives and washes away my awful sins numerous times per day, once I sincerely confess them and try not to repeat them. Oh bless the Lord, O my soul for the wonderful God we serve! The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! The God who made heaven and earth, and all therein! Bless His holy name, and serve Him with a wholesome heart, for therein lies true and eternal wisdom! 

Ah friends, whether you like it or not, that is how I was guided to open today’s Bit. (smile) And it’s all true! No other faith has anything that comes even close to our Christian way of life. And if you add them all up, you’ll see what a treasure trove of blessings we enjoy, even though we don’t deserve them. So for the life of me, I can’t see why we so steadfastly refuse to faithfully serve and worship the ONE true and living God of this universe! 

But friends, all I can do is give you the truth, we each have to make up our individual minds on the path we’re going to follow. Let’s hope that like Joshua, we all sincerely declare: ‘but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.’ (Josh.24:15) 

And our Bit for today just reassures and convinces us that when we follow the Lord we don’t need to fear anything. ‘Herein is our LOVE made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgement: because as he is, so are we in this world.’ 

And the scholars tell us: ‘4:17. Herein points back to verse 16 (dwelling in LOVE). By dwelling in LOVE, and thus having God dwelling in him, the believer gains the priceless assurance that he need not fear the coming judgement. This is our assurance, IF we LOVE in this world as He does.’ 

Please notice that big ‘IF’ there mih people! At some stage of the life hereafter we WILL be judged, whether we believe it or like it. However, ‘IF’ we live in LOVE in this world, we won’t have to fear that judgement. And John explains further. ‘There is no fear in LOVE; but perfect LOVE casteth out fear: because fear hath (involves) torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in LOVE.’ (1 John 4:18) 

Yeh friends, if we sincerely live in LOVE, then there’s no need to be afraid, because there’s NO fear whatsoever in LOVE. Listen to the scholars: ‘4:18. Fear hath torment: abject fear of God is based on dread of punishment. But God’s LOVE for us renders such dread obsolete. 

Fear is still part of the Christian walk, in the sense of profound reverence, the unwillingness to violate God’s trust in us. (See Acts 10:35; 13:26; 2 Cor.7:1; Eph.5:21; Phil.2:12; 1 Pet.1:17). Believers need not fear eternal rejection as a result of God’s judgement (John 5:24), but this does not mean a Christian’s approach to God is to be casual and flippant.’ Please read the references, I just did, and they are interesting. (smile) 

Yes my faithful breddren, not because we don’t have to be afraid of God’s judgement, means we have to live like leggo-beasts. We still need to reverence Him, give Him the honour and glory He deserves. For as John tells us: ‘We LOVE him, because he first LOVED us. 

If a man say, I LOVE God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that LOVETH not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he LOVE God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who LOVETH God LOVE his brother also.’ (1 John 4:19-21) 

And the scholars declare: ‘4:19-21. Our LOVE, if it exists and mirrors God’s LOVE at all, is not our own, but God’s doing. The epitome of hypocrisy is the claim to LOVE God while withholding LOVE from others. For Jesus Himself commanded that he who LOVES God is to demonstrate this through LOVING others.’ 

Unfortunately though friends, that hypocrisy is very rampant throughout Christ’s church. We talk the LOVE but don’t walk it. That’s why so many unbelievers just look at Christians, shake their heads, laugh and declare ‘Hypocrites!’ But this year we going to change that my fellow believers, because 2018 is the year of real and true godly LOVE! 

And to cement that promise, let’s go home by letting the world know our sincere and secure position in Christ, as we declare our Wednesday Wail with strong conviction, in loud voice. All together now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. 

My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ And since all God’s promises are true, we know that the future with Jesus will indeed be glorious! Much LOVE!

…to truly know Jesus…is to certainly LOVE Him…

 

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