Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 September 2021 Matthew 6:21.

Matthew 6:21.     For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, on this Labour Day Monday, may ‘Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord (and Saviour).’ (2 Pet. 1:2) Yes friends, we do need a lot of grace and peace in these trying times, times when everyone seems to be angry, displeased and dissatisfied over some thing or the other. And the only way to get those two precious commodities is through sincere belief in the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who sacrificed His sinless life on the cross of Calvary to pay our sin debt in full! 

All praise and glory be to that wonderful Saviour of ours! He’s promised that despite our circumstances, if we believe in Him, the Father will grant us His divine grace, and thus peace, through all the vicissitudes of life. And let’s remember that it’s by God’s divine grace that we are saved, through faith; and that not of ourselves; it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.’ (Eph. 2:8-9) Or as Saint Therese of Lisieux so wisely put it a while back: ‘Everything is grace!’ 

And it certainly is friends, for all that we are and do, all that we have and will ever have, from the breath of life flowing through our bodies, to the eternal life we receive through believing in Christ, is based on the divine grace of our heavenly Father. That’s God’s unmerited favour, that nothing we can ever do will be good enough to deserve it. And all God’s people gave a loud and grateful shout of ‘Thank You Lord for Your awesome gift of grace!’ 

Sadly though, too many of the earth’s inhabitants don’t know of Jehovah God and His wonderful goodness to the children of men. And even worse yet, too many of those who do know of Him, refuse to accept that divine grace He offers, through faith in His Son Jesus Christ. Now that’s to their detriment, for it will only lead to eternal separation from God, which is the worst thing that can ever happen to a human soul. 

Oh my people, how many times do I have to reiterate that eh, before you all believe me? Eternal separation from God means not being in heaven with Him till eternity, but with Satan, the Devil, Beelzebub, or whatever name you choose to call him, facing damnation in the fiery halls of hell, and eventually being cast into the lake of fire with all the other unbelievers. Now tell me, are the sinful pleasures of this world truly worth such a terrible end? I don’t think so friends. And if you stop for a moment and really consider the situation, you will also realize that the pleasures of this world are not worth such a disastrous end, and can never be better than those found in heaven. 

That’s why in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus adamantly warned: ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt. 6:19-21) 

And we all know that’s the gospel truth friends, for wherever we store whatever we treasure, we will always be thinking of and contemplating on it. So, it’s much better if we store up treasure in heaven, that is, rewards for faithful service, where moth and rust nor any negative thing can destroy them, than store up earthly stuff, that’s useful today and old and rusty or stolen tomorrow. Yes my brethren, earthly things don’t last. Just look at any junkyard nuh. Everything in there was once brand new, shiny and useful, but like the shine on all earthly things it soon wore off and they became old and rusty, of no further use to anyone. 

And to further illuminate us, please listen to the warning James gave to the rich, those who stored up earthly treasures. ‘Go to ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted (have rotted), and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver is cankered (corroded); and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days.’ (James 5:1-3) 

Sadly my brethren, that same earthly treasure that the rich have laid up for their retirement, is what the Lord will use against them in the last days, for a lot of it was treacherously and deceitfully gained; robbing the poor and not paying the labourer a fair wage. That’s the basic story friends; don’t store up too much useless earthly stuff, which you will die and leave here anyway. But try and store up as many rewards for faithful service as you can in heaven, where you will eventually go and enjoy them – providing you accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, because He is the ONLY Way to the Father in heaven! 

Now, let’s talk to the Father, pour out our troubles and problems to Him, the ONLY One who can help us to put a lasting fix on them. So as one strong voice, let’s invoke our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now let’s remember that all our prayers will fall on deaf ears, if we don’t keep the promises we just made. Much LOVE!

…earth’s treasures are temporary…short lived…but heaven’s treasures are eternal…run from everlasting to everlasting…                                                                                                  

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 August 2020 Matthew 6:19.

Matthew 6:19.     ​Lay not up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:
 

Saturday, oh Saturday! Thou lazy, lumbering but oh so beautiful day! How I do LOVE thee! And I won’t stop to count the ways, because there would be just too many! (smile) Yeh friends, Saturday is one of our favourite days because it invokes the spirit of laziness and do nothing, but also of partying… that is when we could party. I guess we can do it some now with the stage 3 ease in the current Covid-19 lockdown. Let’s hope that we don’t overdo it and spoil the good thing we have going. You know that’s one of our favourite tendencies in this age of overdoing. 

But be that as it may, today is Saturday, so let’s check out the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week nuh, as he aspires to inspire us to a better tomorrow. And this first one is a doozy. (smile) ‘Don’t handicap your children by making their lives easy.’ Now isn’t that what our generation has done in spades! We’ve made life so easy for our children that they believe they are entitled to an easy life, and are the biggest whiners on the planet! They have no belly or backbone because they have not gone through any real hard times, and it’s only difficulties that build resilience and stick-to-itiveness! 

We’ve made them so soft, given them what they want, or what the advertising agencies said they needed and thus spoiled them rotten. Oh, I can understand our desire to not make their lives as difficult as many of ours were, but that difficulty is what made us strong and determined, and by removing most of the difficulty in their lives we’ve done them a great injustice, because now, when they face difficulties, many of them can’t cope. That’s why so many of them are seeing shrinks and are on psych meds at an early age and contend so much with suicidal thoughts, especially when confronted with the evil that’s found in social media. 

And the next quote wisely proclaims: ‘The man who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.’ Now there’s an awesome lot of truth in that saying! When we confront big problems, or that mighty mountain we desire to move, it’s advisable to begin with the small tasks, which are always present, and work our way up to the big ones. That makes our lives easier and our problems less difficult to solve. It makes no sense to try and remove the entire mountain all at once. (smile) You’d notice that even with the great earth removing equipment we have nowadays, they still remove the big mountains one shovel full, or one relatively small piece at a time, never the whole thing at once. 

Then there’s this: ‘He who is untrue to his own cause cannot command the respect of others.’ Now that ought to be pure common sense! How can you espouse a cause then not be true to it and expect others to respect you eh? But unfortunately that happens a lot in these modern times. I don’t know if the causes are never truly espoused and just being used as facades for other stuff. But there are so many varied causes being espoused nowadays, that it’s become very difficult to know whom to trust, and often wise not to trust any of them. It’s so sad that so many people are not who they say they are, or what they are about. 

Consequently there’s so much disrespect and distrust and lack of faith in our society that we have to be ever so careful of whom we deal with. That leads us to this quote. ‘Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to reform (or pause and reflect).’ Now I’m not sure what that the author really means by that statement. For if you consider our way of life that we term democracy, basically meaning that the majority wins, then it doesn’t make sense. 

On the other hand, I guess one can consider it to mean that being in the majority is not a good thing. In some way it belittles or demeans you, because only the minority knows what’s best, are capable of ruling. I guess that’s why so many li’l cliques are ruling so many things in our world. (smile) But seriously though, I don’t know if there’s ever a bad time to reform or pause and reflect, because none of us are perfect, which means we all have room for improvement in all kinds of areas of our lives. 

And the last quote says: ‘Nothing is forever. Everything goes to 0 eventually.’ Technically speaking that’s not quite true, because eternity lasts forever. (smile) However, in the affairs of men, nothing really lasts forever; be they relationships, businesses, buildings, possessions, even societies come and go. Just look at all the great societies that have populated the planet over time. All of them eventually fell into decay and many disappeared completely, as will our current powerful one that’s now in sad decline and decay. I guess you can call it the nature of the beast. 

And that’s why Jesus gave us this all-important warning. ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:’ (Matt. 6:19) Oh friends, what great wisdom is contained in those words! The treasures of earth are those that will not last forever, they will either get stolen or naturally rust and decay, because that’s just the nature of earthly things. Even the earth won’t last forever and is in a state of constant change with things like earthquakes and volcanoes and other natural disasters constantly changing and destroying it. 

No wonder Cousin Sol also advised: ‘Labour not to be rich (do not overwork): cease from thine own wisdom.’ (Prov. 23:4) For it’s all vanity, useless in the long run. Then Jesus gives us the real truth of the matter. ‘But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves do not break through nor steal.’ (Matt. 6:20) Yes mih people, the one place that will not see any destruction and last forever is heaven! Glory be! That’s why Jesus pointed us in that direction. ‘For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt. 6:21) And that’s the living truth. Wherever our treasure is stored, that’s where our focus will be. 

As the scholars explain: ‘6:19-21. The attention of the believer is directed toward treasures in heaven. The term ‘treasures’ implies the addition or accumulation of things. The two kinds of treasures are conditioned by their place (either on earth or in heaven). The concept of laying up treasures in heaven is not pictured as one of meritorious benefits but rather as rewards for faithful service, as is illustrated elsewhere in the teaching of Jesus.’ 

Oh friends, treasures can indeed be useful and valuable, but the sad fact of the matter is that the earthly ones don’t last or get us very far, they all leave us, or we leave them when the grim reaper comes a-calling. So we can enjoy them for a while, but should not set our hearts desires on them, but rather be more concerned with the treasures, the rewards that we can accumulate in heaven for faithful service in Jesus’ name, because those are the only real treasures that exist, that are worth working towards and the only ones which will last forever. Much LOVE!

…where’s our heart looking eh…to earth or heaven… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 November 2019 Matthew 5:19.

Matthew 5:19.    ​Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:
 

‘Sunshine makes me feel so happy…Sunshine makes me feel so sad…’ Yeh friends, sunshine has the ability to do both those things. When we see it in the early morning hours, it lifts our spirits, but when it gets too hot, or too cold, as it is now in my neck of the woods, it deflates the spirit somewhat. But let’s be thankful for small mercies nuh, be thankful that there’s a bright sun shining in God’s beautiful sky, instead of any negative precipitation like the rain we’ve been recently having, or the snow that’s in our immediate future. And the ordinary workingman reminds us of just that in his weekend song. 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday, and the weekend is upon us! Boy, is that ever the best time of the week! And the sun’s shining to boot…and no snow not falling…not yet anyway. Wow! As Brother James Brown would say: ‘Get on the good foot baby!’ Yes, I’m certainly going to do that, come rain, snow or shine, cause life’s too short to allow the vagaries of the weather to control it. And who doesn’t want to do that, that’s their business, their loss. They don’t know what a good time they passing up nuh. To some of us, it’s okay to work all week, then don’t enjoy the weekend. Well not me nuh! I’m starting right now to enjoy it oui! Come hell or highwater, my weekend going to be a blast! Yes sir! Thank God for Fridays and weekends!’ 

And so should we all, my precious people of God! Because it’s only through His grace and mercy that we can enjoy the fruits of our labour in fairly peaceful surroundings. Unfortunately, a great proportion of humanity are unable to do that, due to strife and wars and other public upheavals. So let’s give some sincere and heartfelt thanks as we declare our weekend song, our Friday Chant.

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.’ 

And as I like to remind us each week, Christianity is an action oriented, outgoing association, but not one that just runs hither, thither and yon without a sensible sense of purpose. (smile) That is to say, our Leader, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ has instituted borders and boundaries that we should not cross over since they would just allow the ever-lurking enemy to get a foothold in our lives, something we need to avoid at all cost. So, unlike the ordinary workingman, we don’t rush out and do whatever we want, or whatever feels good, we need to examine our actions in the context of Christ’s boundaries before we do stuff. 

Now sometimes that’s difficult, or it seems to detract from what we’d naturally consider a joyful time. But friends, it’s better to be safe than sorry, for once we get into certain activities or circumstances, they will certainly come back to haunt us, possibly for the rest of our lives. Please, please, let’s remember that all that glitters is not gold, especially in the enemy’s camp. His stuff is not even gold plated, just covered with a thin veneer of gold paint, and gets rusty real quickly! (smile) That’s why Jesus went to such great length to warn us in His Sermon on the Mount: ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:’ What life changing, world beating advice my brethren! 

And it’s not like we don’t know, or have not experienced the theft and/or fraudulent gain of our earthly treasure by others, yet we continue to kill ourselves in order to accumulate earthly wealth and possessions that can be so easily violated. And Jesus doesn’t leave us hanging, He shows us where to store our treasure. ‘But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through and steal.’ (Matt. 6:20) That’s ageless wisdom people! If you have treasure, the best place to store it is where it’s the safest from thieves and rust…and that’s heaven. 

And furthermore, Jesus reminds us: ‘For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt.6:21) Gospel truth friends! Just think about your earthly valuables right now, wherever you have them stored, your mind is always on them wondering if they are safe; in the bank, or under your mattress, or if they are making you more money, increasing in value, in places like the stock exchange. And in these oh so turbulent times, we’re thinking about our earthly treasure more than ever, since matters totally out of our control can cause us to lose it all. 

Listen to the scholars: ‘6:19-21. The attention of the believer is directed toward treasures in heaven. The term treasures implies the addition or accumulation of things. The two kinds of treasures are conditioned by their place (on earth, or in heaven). The concept of laying up treasures in heaven is not pictured as one of meritorious benefits but rather as rewards for faithful service, as is illustrated elsewhere in the teaching of Jesus.’ Oh friends all the wealth in the world won’t get us into heaven. That doesn’t mean it’s wrong to have earthly wealth, but it’s how we use it. 

Hear Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘Charge (command) them that are rich in this world (present age), that they be not highminded (haughty), nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute (give), willing to communicate (share); Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.’ (1 Tim. 17-19) Yeh friends, once we believe in Christ, we must use our earthly treasures to help others, to further God’s kingdom, thus we will store up rewards, treasures in heaven…and you can’t beat heavenly treasures! Much LOVE!

…labour not to be rich…do not overwork…cease from thine own wisdom… (Prov.23:4)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 July 2014 Matthew 6:19

Matthew 6:19.       Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin, destroy), and where thieves break through and steal.

Aye mih Friends, it’s Thursday, what’s new, what’s on the agenda for today eh? I know that all of us have lofty plans for the day, but just remember, for them to succeed, we have to commit these plans to the Lord, link them with His plan and will for our lives.
 
As Bruh David so wisely advises in Psalm 37 – The true state of the wicked. ‘Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgement (justice) as the noonday.’ (Ps.37:5-6)
 
But first things first my brethren; let’s give our wonderful God a mighty shout of praise and thanks for causing us to see another marvelous day here on earth, for without His goodness and tender mercy, His LOVING-kindness and forbearance, that wouldn’t be possible.
 
So please pray with me, this prayer that Jesus taught us. ‘Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (the evil one): for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.’ (Matt.6:9-13)
 
Yes my people, it’s always best to acknowledge our heavenly Father before we begin asking Him for this and that. It just shows our respect, our reverential awe for His holiness, His spectacular majesty and awesome power, and that we’re not merely interested in whatever good things He might have to offer us.
 
For also remember that He can see, and does read the true motives of our hearts, so any hypocrisy we try to hide from Him WILL BE exposed to His supernatural sight. Consequently, I don’t understand how so many of us still come to God with deceitful thoughts and attitudes, thinking to fool Him. Absolute stupidity!
 
Anyway, that brings us to our Bit, a very significant teaching of Jesus. ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin, destroy), and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt.6:19-21)
 
Oh Friends, what a very instructive and hopefully convincing passage of scripture, that all of us will sincerely and confidently take note of!
 
And the scholars have this to say about those verses. ‘6:19-21. The attention of the believer is directed toward treasures in heaven. The term treasures implies the addition or accumulation of things. The two kinds of treasures are conditioned by their place (either on earth or in heaven).
 
The concept of laying up treasures in heaven is not pictured as one of meritorious benefits but rather of rewards for faithful service, as illustrated elsewhere in the teaching of Jesus.’
 
Yes my brethren, unlike the world’s theory that we should aggrandize ourselves with the worthless physical riches of the earth, Jesus is advising us to store up the favours and rewards for godly and righteous service in heaven.
 
And it’s a proven fact that wherever the choice things of our heart are located, that’s where our attention will be focused. So if the treasures of the world hold the place of highest esteem in our lives, then that’s where our focus, our priorities, will lie.
 
However, if the rewards and riches found in heaven speak more to us, then it’s on heaven and heavenly things that our focus and priorities will be trained.
 
And though the riches of the world are nice to have, running behind them, making ourselves slaves to collecting them is not a very wise idea. For that path only brings immense headaches and pain, in the long run causing us to forsake our friends and families, and most importantly our God.
 
Now let’s look at some scriptures that support our Bit. And the first comes from the pen of wise Cousin Sol, where he unequivocally declares: ‘Labour not (do not overwork) to be rich: cease from thine own wisdom.
 
Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? (Will you cause your eyes to fly on it, and it is not?) For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven.’ (Prov.23:4-5)
 
And who should know the effect of riches my people, better than the richest man ever eh? And it is the gospel truth, as we can see from the many who have laboured long and hard to attain material wealth, then lost it all, in no time at all.
 
And there are also many stories of people who have made and lost several earthly fortunes in a lifetime. So it’s essentially easy to amass earthly riches, but the problem is keeping them.
 
And we’ll end today with those wise, famous and memorable words of Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment (clothing) let us therewith be content.
 
But they that will (desire to) be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful (harmful) lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition (ruin and destruction).
 
For the LOVE of money is the root of all (kinds of) evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith (for which some in their greediness have strayed from the faith), and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
 
But thou, O man of God, flee these things (shun a LOVE of money); and follow after (pursue) righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.’ (1 Tim.6:6-12)
 
Oh my people, that passage of scripture says it all! So please, I implore us, let’s all look seriously today at our attitude towards material wealth, and wisely place it at the nether end of our priorities, not make it the goal of our lives.
 
Instead, let’s make the accumulation of heavenly rewards our raison d’etre, our reason for living. Now that’s the wisdom of everlasting life! Much LOVE!
 
…earthly wealth can easily be lost…and in any case we leave it all behind…when we go to collect our heavenly rewards…so why doggedly pursue it eh…