Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 June 2020 Matthew 10:22.

Matthew 10:22.     And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.
 

Well mih people, hope you all are having a fine Saturday, sleeping in or lazing on the couch. Some of us can’t afford those luxuries though, we have to get up and labour away, just like any other day. (smile) But it’s all in the Lord’s name, so I guess it’s okay. And the confusion in the streets and in the medical community still reign. In some places it’s better, in some it’s worse, but be it known that this is indeed a monumental time in the history of mankind. 

And who knows what the outcome will be? For sure there will be changes, but what changes and to what extent? And are they going to make a difference, a substantial or meaningful difference in the way our world operates. Right now, ONLY the Lord alone knows, but let’s all hope and pray, that at the end of this pandemic and these protests that our world will wake up in a new and better place. And all God’s people said a loud and prayerful ‘Amen!’ 

Now let’s get into our Saturday mode and look at the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first one directly addresses one of our current problems. ‘It’s important for us to also understand that the phrase ‘Black Lives Matter’ simply refers to the notion that there’s a specific vulnerability for African Americans that needs to be addressed. It’s not meant to suggest that other lives don’t matter. It’s to suggest that other folks aren’t experiencing this particular vulnerability.’ 

And I know that some of you, particularly the privileged ones, won’t agree with that statement, because you have never walked a day in a black man’s shoes, but I do, wholeheartedly. That’s because all over the world, the people of African heritage are treated differently than others. It’s so ridiculous that even if you have a white parent, and you look white, you are considered black, because dislike of black skin or heritage is so deeply entrenched in our white ruled society. Now that’s not to say that other minorities aren’t treated in a poor manner too, but nowhere near as badly as black people are treated. 

And the next quote informs to the first one: ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’ And isn’t that the living truth! For some reason, possibly because we’re all so selfish and greedy, injustice travels faster and further than justice! The wheels of justice turn ever so slowly, while those of injustice just seem to race along. Have you ever noticed how quickly injustice spreads amongst a hitherto reasonably just society, but how long it takes for justice to be restored when the injustice has been broken down? 

What can I say eh? I guess it’s just the nature of the human animal, that’s why there’s so much truth in the saying, ‘Man’s inhumanity to man makes countless thousands mourn.’ No doubt our Creator made us to be LOVING, humane beings, but with our free will, we have evolved to be the exact opposite. And the next quote interestingly advises: ‘If people are doubting how far you can go, go so far that you can’t hear them anymore.’ 

Hn, Hn! I like it. It sounds saucy and somewhat rebellious! And why not eh? If people keep jawing in your ears about your inability to move up and on, then simply do so well, move on and up so far, that you can’t hear their negative caterwauling any longer. (smile) It’s so sad when you realize the vast amount of people who never reach their potential because of loudmouthed naysayers! And that’s exactly why our next and last quote is so awesomely true: ‘It’s hard to beat a person who never gives up.’ And that’s the backbone of our Christian faith: ‘NEVER GIVE UP!’ 

Yes my faithful believing friends, those words don’t exist in Christ’s vocabulary. His motto is ‘KEEP KEEPING ON!’ And anyone who chooses to seriously follow Him must also make that their number one goal. And Jesus said it ever so plainly: ‘And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.’ It couldn’t be any clearer than that. And for good measure, He said it a second time when talking about the signs before the end. ‘And because iniquity (lawlessness) shall abound, the LOVE of many shall wax (grow) cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.’ (Matt. 24:12-13) 

And we’re seeing that right now; lawlessness abounds and LOVE is a meaningless word. But as a true believer, you just have to tell your awesome pilot, Jesus: ‘Steady as she goes!’ (smile) We just have to keep on keeping on, enduring and persevering right down to the very end. We can’t be like the seed in the parable of the sower that are sown on stony ground, who hear the word and ‘immediately receive it with gladness. And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction (tribulation) or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended (caused to stumble).’ (Mark 4:16-17) 

No friends, true believers need to react in Bruh Paul’s words, like Charity, like LOVE: ‘Doth not behave itself unseemly (rudely), seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil (keeps no account of evil); Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.’ (! Cor. 13:5-7) Yes mih people, true Christian behaviour is not an easy row to hoe, but with Jesus’ help we can certainly accomplish it, if we truly believe as we like to say: ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.’ (Phil. 4:13) 

And it’s why He also told Timothy: ‘Thou therefore endure hardness (hardship) like a good soldier of Jesus Christ.’ (2 Tim. 2:3) We believers are all supposed to be soldiers in Christ’s army, and good soldiers endure hardship for their leader and their cause. What we must therefore endeavour to truthfully say at the end, are these momentous words of Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith; Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that LOVE his appearing.’ (2 Tim. 4:7-8) 

Now friends, if we would all make that our sincere goal, and work diligently towards it, then our world will be eventually turned right side up, and we’ll get our just rewards in heaven. Much LOVE!

…with strong faith and trust in Christ…we can persevere and endure…whatever comes our way…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 September 2018 1 Timothy 6:12.

1 Timothy 6:12. ​   Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast pro​fessed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.

 

One more time unto the breach, dear friends, one more time! Yeh, I’ve got another medical appointment this morning, that’s why the Bit is so early again. The good thing though is that I don’t have to go into Toronto, it’s just some diagnostic testing not too far down the street from me. 

But I do have to fast for it, and fasting, or rather forced fasting and I are not the best of friends. The ole stomach is here growling away on me, calling for food, but I still have a few hours to go until I can grant it its request. (smile) But as they say, it’s all for my benefit. So just suck it up, grin and bear it! 

That brings us to this bit of good advice attributed to James J Corbett (1866-1933), the American Heavyweight fighter, better known as ‘Gentleman Jim.’ He advises: ‘Fight one more round. When your feet are so tired you have to shuffle back to the centre of the ring, fight one more round.’ And that from someone who knows what He’s talking about through personal experience! 

Yes my brethren, that’s what we Christians are called to do; fight one more round, even though we feel at the point of exertion, be it physical, mental or emotional. Oh, I know many of us are tired, what with all our personal problems, including health, wealth and friendship matters, but as believers, we’re not supposed to give up. Giving up doesn’t exist in Jesus’ vocabulary. 

And further still, they say that the darkest hour is the one just before the dawn, so if you’re seeing what you consider a very dark hour, please believe that relief is right around the corner. Remember the mind is the most powerful tool in the world, and what we believe we can achieve. We have to use what resources we possess to our best advantage and keep on keeping on. 

As Bruh Paul cautioned Timothy in his first missive: ‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things (LOVE of money, hurtful lusts, material wealth.); and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast pro​fessed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.’ 

And as the scholars say of our Bit: ‘6:12. The good fight concerns the daily struggle with sin in the Christian life, and the hardships and adversities in the ministry. A genuine believer demonstrates the reality of his faith by being engaged in this warfare. Lay hold on eternal life does not negate the fact that a believer now possess spiritual life (John 3:36); rather, it speaks of fully realizing or appropriating salvation as the believer matures.’ 

Ah mih breddren being a true believer in Jesus Christ is not easy, but since we have declared ourselves to be true believers, we have to just keep on keeping on. And it’s not like we don’t have ample resources and encouragement, assurance and help to fight our earthly battle. We do! Namely all the resources granted to us as believers in Jesus Christ; the biggest and most important ones being salvation and eternal life. 

As the Good Book declares: ‘He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth (remains) on him.’ (John 3:36) Oh friends, that provision alone ought to be enough to encourage us to stand strong and live and defend our faith. Which other faith has that sure promise eh…with the sacrifice, and resurrection of Christ to back it up eh? NONE! 

And then we have so many other promises of God, who has a good plan for every life, with a hope and good future. He’s also promised never to leave nor forsake us; to hear our prayers and pleas when we diligently and sincerely seek Him; to bring us out of the fire unscorched; to take us safely through the flood, and most of all grant us a Deliverer, a Messiah, one to sacrifice and atone for our sins, which He did through His only Son Jesus Christ becoming flesh and offering His sinless life upon the cross at Calvary so that our sins could be washed white as snow. 

Glory to God my people! For He has done all that He’s promised, and if we do what we’re supposed to do, then He will do the rest. The Lord will not do it all for us. He requires us to put in an effort on His behalf, since we’re partners in this New Covenant. So though life might be dark, dreary and difficult, we do have all the tools necessary to fight the good fight. 

And hopefully, at the end of our days, we’ll all be able to proudly say like Bruh Paul did to Timothy: ‘I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that LOVE his appearing.’ (2 Tim.4:7-8) 

Yes mih breddren, what a joyful day that will be! But until then, let’s keep fighting the good fight nuh, and as a promise of our faithful intentions, go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our current position in Christ. All together now, let’s wail: ‘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 the future will be even more glorious than our puny minds can imagine. So think on that nuh! Much LOVE!

…when life gets difficult…consider our rewards in heaven…and the glorious future promised us there…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 December 2015 Revelation 1:3‏

Revelation 1:3. Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

Oh my people it’s a brand new day! Glory be! That means there are things for us to do, plans for us to accomplish in the Lord’s name, otherwise we would have read our names in the obits this morning. (smile) Oh glory to God for being such a wonderful Saviour and Provider! 

So let’s proclaim, as the psalmist did: ‘This is the day the Lord has made. We WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’ 

Yes friends, every day that we’re alive should be one of rejoicing and giving thanks and praise for all that we enjoy. But to do that we have to do one thing in particular; develop a positive approach to life and dwell therein. 

And we have a two for one offer today on the subject from our Friend Anselm, who always tries to inspire us to have a better tomorrow. The first quote says: ‘In order to carry a positive action we must develop a positive vision.’ That’s oh so true my people, we can’t do positive stuff unless we have a positive outlook. 

And the second quote gives us some insight into how to accomplish the ‘positivity’ in our lives.  You can make positive deposits in your own economy every day by reading and listening to positive, life-changing content, and by associating with encouraging and hope-building people.’ 

What glorious truth my brethren! We can only become positive and stay positive by reading positive stuff and associating with positive, hope-filled people on a regular basis. And the most positive book in the world is the Bible! And the most positive people ought to be Christians! 

So what does that tell us eh? That we ought to read the Bible regularly and associate with Christians to a great extent. 

Now we can’t only associate with Christians, otherwise we’d lose opportunities to witness to the unbelievers, both by word and deed, and personal witnessing is one of our great tools for spreading God’s Word. 

And to help us stay in a positive mode and frame of mind, let’s do what we do on Wednesdays nuh; that is proclaim our Wednesday Wail. Altogether 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!’ 

Oh my people, my people, what a wise and wonderful way to look at life! We’re not looking back, but ahead, running our race of glory with our eyes fixed on the prize of one day seeing Jesus in heaven, having Him place a crown of righteousness on our heads and enthusiastically saying: ‘Welcome thou good and faithful servant!’ 

Nothing can be sweeter or more worthwhile than that my fellow believers! But to have that wonderful encounter in heaven, we need to do certain things down here on earth. And our Bit says it all: ‘Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.’ 

Yes friends, we desperately need to follow that dictate. Remember the scholars told us yesterday that our Bit has a three-part condition to it: we need to READ the Good Book, then HEAR or UNDERSTAND it, and finally KEEP or OBEY it! Yes my brethren, that’s the magic formula for piling up rewards in heaven and being welcomed by a beaming Christ at the end of our earthly pilgrimage! 

Well, in truth, there is nothing magical to it, but more a lot of things like hope and faith and belief, forgiveness, LOVE and perseverance. Those are the essentials for obtaining our eventual goal, of one day being welcomed by Christ in heaven. 

Now let us look at some scriptures that corroborate our Bit. And there’s no better way to begin than with the words of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. One day, while explaining to His listeners that a divided house cannot stand, the Good Book tells us. 

‘And it came to pass, as he spake these things, a certain woman of the company (crowd) lifted up her voice, and said unto him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked (the breasts which nursed thee). But he said, Yea, rather (more than that) blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.’ (Luke 11:27-28) 

And the scholars have an interesting explanation on those verses.’11:27-28. These verses are unique to Luke. They show that spiritual relationship with Jesus is more important than family ties, and that blessedness is a matter of both hearing and doing God’s word.’ 

Oh friends, we can never overstate the importance of reading, hearing and doing God’s Word! 

Now let’s end with the opening passage from Psalm 119 – ALEPH – The Lord’s judgements are righteous. ‘Blessed are the undefiled (blameless) in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord. Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart. They also do no iniquity: they walk in his ways.’ (Ps.119:1-3) 

Yes my precious people, that’s gospel truth! So today, and everyday henceforth, let’s show our wisdom by doing what it says nuh. That way we can be assured of a great welcome in heaven by Jesus and all the saints. Much LOVE!

…oh when the saints…go marching in…oh when the saints go marching in…oh Lord…I want to be in that number…when the saints go marching in…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 November 2014 2 Peter 1:7

2 Peter 1:7.    And to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness charity (LOVE).

And finally Friends, it was Friday…
 
And all around the world there were joyful shouts of ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! This slaving for massa couldn’t done soon enough! The fun time, the weekend is just waiting to welcome us with open arms! Thank the Lord ever so much that it’s Friday!
 
My sentiments exactly Friends! But we need to be very careful that we don’t get carried away with the fun part of the weekend, that we also remember the rest part and the godly communication and fellowship aspects. And to help us do that, let’s get into our Friday Chant right off the top.
 
Sincerely, and as one 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.’
 
Yes my people, we have to find the right balance between fun, rest and time with God and other believers to refresh and rejuvenate ourselves, so that we can go back out on Monday and begin the whole workweek process all over again, take the battle to the heathen one more time.
 
That brings us to this quote, which I believe I might have shared before, but it’s so useful and wonderful that we need to be reminded of it every single day. It’s by George Elliston (1883-1946) a female American journalist, and it simply says: ‘How beautiful a day can be when kindness touches it.’
 
Mama Mia! And isn’t that the gospel, gospel truth my brethren? It surely, surely is!
 
There’s nothing in this whole wide world that touches us as much as kindness! But unfortunately it is something that’s so sadly lacking in our busy, selfish, evil, resentful and war mongering world. People look at you as though you’re crazy, mentally retarded, when you do an act of kindness. What sort of society are we living in eh?
 
The best thing that could ever happen is if everybody showered everybody else with kindness. Then we’d have the wonderful world we talk about so much!
 
And Peter, in his discussion on growing in grace reveals to us some of the touchstones, including our Bit, which we need to add to our lives for such growth.
 
‘And beside this (But also for this very reason), giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance (self-control); and to temperance patience (perseverance); and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (LOVE).’ (2 Pet.1:5-7)
 
What a revelation my fellow believers! For a lot of us so-called believers don’t show the kindness that we ought to, even to fellow believers. Remember what Jesus tried to drive into the disciples’ heads: ‘This is my commandment; That ye LOVE one another, as I have LOVED you.’ (John 15:12)
 
And as Peter so wisely and rightly continues: ‘For if these things be in you (are yours), and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren (useless) nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
 
But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off (is shortsighted), and hath forgotten that he was purged (cleansed) from his old sins.
 
Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall (stumble): For so an entrance shall be ministered (supplied) unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.’ (2 Pet. 1:8-11)
 
Yes Friends, we need to bear all those fruits, if we desire to bring others to Jesus, and ensure that our rewards in heaven are also as great as they can be.
 
Now here are some explanations from the scholars’ on all of that. ‘1:5-7. In this section Peter urges his readers to grow to spiritual maturity. Add to your faith indicates the areas of growth that follow after salvation. Virtue is moral excellence.
 
Knowledge is spiritual truth. Temperance is self-control. Patience is endurance. Godliness is God-likeness. Brotherly kindness (Gr. philadelphian) is brotherly LOVE. Charity (Gr. agape) is volitional (of the will)) LOVE. This process is a lifelong cycle of spiritual growth for all believers
.’
 
And more explanations from the scholars’. ‘1:10-11. Ye shall never fall: The author is not referring to falling from salvation but to failure in Christian living.
 
The everlasting kingdom refers to the eternal realm of God where Jesus is the undisputed Ruler. It is synonymous with heaven. Thus, the one who acquires the virtues of verses 5-7 will have a rich inheritance in heaven
.’
 
And Friends, since I know that all of us desire to have a very rich inheritance in heaven, please, I implore us, please let’s go out and do those things that we ought to do as true believers nuh, the things which will ensure that we have a rich heavenly reward. That’s simple common sense, as well as heavenly wisdom!
Much LOVE!
 
…Jesus simply went out everyday…doing good…so should His followers…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 April 2014 Psalm 66:19

PSALM 66:19.           But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer.   

And then it was Friday, and the people were in an uproar: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes mih brethren! I couldn’t hack another day in that sweat shop nuh! Thank God for these two blessed days off!’  

Yes Friends, I know how bad it can be in some of the places some of us work, but sometimes we just have no choice, because that’s the only job we can get at this time, and it’s certainly better than no job at all. But all is not lost my people, we have a LOVING and magnanimous God who looks after us, and He will not allow us to bear more than we can handle.  

As we keep saying, following Jesus is not easy, but it is always interesting, and will bear great rewards at a later date, either down here on earth or up in heaven. So please don’t give up, the trials and tribulations won’t last forever. And to help us handle the weekend the right way, let’s chant our Friday Chant with much enthusiasm to keep our spirits high.  

Altogether 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.’  

Now let’s work out the day, with the joy of the Lord in our hearts, faithfully looking forward to a great weekend!  That brings us to our Bit: ‘But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer.’  

Now such powerful conviction should be held by ALL believers, if we are faithful to prayer, for the Lord faithfully answers our sincere prayers! But Friends, so many of us are lost and lacking in serious prayer, and prayer is so important in the Christian walk of faith, that we are continuing this series of messages on prayer, highlighting scriptures that prove its efficacy.  

Today we’ll highlight two more instances where prayer was masterful. The first comes from Acts 12, where Herod kills James and imprisons Peter, intending to bring him before the people after Passover. (Acts 12:1-4) However, our great and wonderful God had other ideas and plans. Remember, men plan, but it is God’s will that prevails!  

‘Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.’ (Acts 12:5) And we all know the story of how on the night before Herod planned to bring Peter out, the angel of the Lord came to the prison and miraculously led him out to freedom. (Acts 12:6-11) And as the Lord would have it, he ended up at the house of John Mark’s mother Mary, ‘where many were gathered together praying.’ (Acts 12:12)  

Yuh see the power of prayer my people! But just like it is with us in today’s ungodly climate, when Peter knocked on Mary’s door, his friends didn’t believe it was really him, saying it was his angel. They even called the servant girl who answered his knock and heard his voice crazy, though she was absolutely positive that it was Peter. (Acts 12:13-15)  

‘But Peter continued knocking: and when they had opened the door, and saw him, they were astonished.’ (Acts 12:16) Oh Friends, how marvellous are the works of our omnipotent God! And always in our best interest too!  

The scholars though have an interesting take on that episode of scripture. ’12:12-16. Though the prayer of the church was fervent due to Peter’s situation (v 5), there was a deficiency in faith (vv 15-16). Evidently they did not believe God would answer in this miraculous way, or so soon.’  

And doesn’t that sound very familiar? It sure does, because even today many of us still don’t believe in the efficacy of prayer although there are numerous examples to show that it works. But regardless of how strong the believers’ faith was, the important thing is that they persevered in prayer, and the Lord answered their prayers.  

That brings us to the second scripture passage we’ll look at today. It’s Bruh Paul talking to the Philippians about rejoicing in the Lord. ‘Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.’ (Phil.4:6)  

Oh my brethren, Bruh Paul could not be any simpler and straightforward than that! So why aren’t we following it eh? I really don’t know. But here is what he says will happen if we pray continually. “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:7)  

Oh mih people, mih people, isn’t peace what we’re all searching for? Well right there we’re told how to get it! And not the peace of the world, but the peace of God! So why aren’t we doing as the Good Book says eh, and continue to stubbornly cling to our own paltry efforts to find peace in an ungodly, wicked world?  

Anyway my fellow believers, today, RIGHT NOW, please let’s allow those simple but momentous words to loudly reverberate in our souls, bodies and minds, so that we can be convinced of the power of prayer, and use it consistently each and every day of our lives, for it is indeed the epitome of wisdom! Much LOVE! 

…without fulsome prayer…a believer is lost…adrift on an endless sea of anxiety and fear…  

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 March 2014 Proverbs 21:17.

Proverbs 21:17.   He that LOVETH pleasure shall be a poor man: he that LOVETH wine and oil shall not be rich. 
 

And the raging, unforgiving, unrepentant cold weather continues unabated in the northern climes, while down south, under blazing sunshine, mas and merriment are being joyfully made! What injustice! (smile)
 
But that’s the way the great I AM planned and created His awesome universe, so who are we, his sinful minions to dispute His higher than high ways, wisdom and understanding eh?
 
Yes Friends, it’s another deathly cold morning in my neck of the woods, while later today, down in Rio, New Orleans, T&T and wherever else, the crescendo of carnival is building up to its climax on the final day of the bacchanalian festival.
 
Oh that I was somewhere down there to enjoy the physical warmth, the splendour of the costumes, the joy, the spontaneity of action when the music blasts into your soul!
 
Oh Friends, there’s no feeling like playing mas in the hot sun, with the music, be it brass or steel, just jamming, and you singing and jumping to the high heavens! Ah Lord eh!
 
That’s why I keep reminding us to make good memories, because that’s all the ole fella has now – memories of carnival in yesteryear, when he made a fool of himself… oh but what enjoyable foolishness! (smile)
 
But as they so rightly and wisely say, after one time is two times. So all we ole fogeys who can’t jump and prance again, just have to delve into the archives of our memory and retrieve the good ones of a time when we were much less physically and mentally challenged. Hn, hn!
 
And at the same time, let’s all remember to give the Good Lord some thanks and praise for bringing us so far along into this life, and blessing us with all the blessings that so many others never received.
 
But my people, please, please never forget these extremely wise, very profound and gospel true words of our Bit: ‘He that LOVETH pleasure shall be a poor man: he that LOVETH wine and oil shall not be rich.’ It’s the awesome, awesome truth! 
 
And we saw that yesterday, saw how Cousin Sol proved it with his great life experiment. (Eccl.2:1-11) And also as the scholars so wisely noted, that three thousand years after Cousin Sol’s empirical and factual conclusion to the contrary, mankind is still trying to find satisfaction and meaning in the unsatisfying, meaningless and fleeting good feelings of the pleasures of the world. 
 
Yes my brethren, wine, women and song are pleasurable for the moment, but they have nothing of real and true lasting value. Only the things of God have true lasting value, can stand the test of time and the fire that our deeds will be eventually tested with.
 
So let’s now see what the scriptures have to say re Cousin Sol’s pronouncement that seeking a life of earthly pleasure is vain and futile.
 
And no words can be more telling than those of our Leader, Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ! Listen to Him as He talks about the parable of the sower, explaining what happens to the seeds that fall in different places when they are thrown to the wind.
 
‘And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection (maturity).’ (Luke 8:14)
 
Oh my fellow believers, if we’re only concerned with the cares, riches and pleasures of this world, we’ll NEVER bear fruit for Jesus! And thus our rewards in heaven, if we do get there, will be severely limited.
 
Now, are you willing to take the chance on any of those two scenarios happening in your life? I certainly hope not! For as Bruh Paul warns Timothy about the apostasy of the last days.
 
‘This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be LOVERS of their own selves, covetous (money lovers), boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers (irreconcilable), false accusers (slanderers), incontinent (without self-control), fierce (brutal), despisers of those that are good,
 
Traitors, heady (reckless), high-minded (haughty), LOVERS of pleasures more than (rather than) LOVERS of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts.
 
Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate (disapproved) concerning the faith. But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was.’ (2 Tim.3:1-9)
 
Oh Friends, I couldn’t say it any better than Bruh Paul! But there are some words from the scholars that I think are important for us to know, although it will make the Bit longer. But what are a few more words when they help us to understand God’s Word eh? (smile)
 
And the scholars declare: ‘3:1-4. The last days began with the birth of Christ and will culminate in Christ’s return to the earth to set up His kingdom. The prediction of perilous times indicate that apostasy will characterize the final days of the church age.’
 
‘3:5-9. A form of godliness is mere religion without power or spiritual life. Paul commands Timothy to turn away from these false teachers who prey upon silly women laden with sins, who are especially susceptible to false teachers.
 
Ever learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth condemns not intense study but some esoteric quest for truth apart from God’s Word. Jannes and Jambres, according to Jewish tradition, were the two magicians in Pharaoh’s court who attempted to duplicate Moses’ miracles (cf. (Ex. 7:11; 9:11).’
 
So Friends, it’s obvious that our total concentration on the pleasures of this world, only leads us to ruin! And daily we see lots of evidence of it around us. So please, I’m pleading with us, let’s all take serious note of it nuh, and consequently restructure and conduct our lives in a more appropriate fashion, one that suits true believers. Now that’s wisdom in spades! Much LOVE!
 
…he who LOVES the pleasures of this world…will not receive much LOVE from heaven…
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 July 2013 Luke 10:33

Luke 10:33.   But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him.
 
‘Monday, Monday! Oh how we believers LOVE that day! No Friends, it’s not a typo. I know that many of us would rather say: ‘Oh how I LOVE to hate that day!’
 
But that’s not even worldly wisdom my brethren, much less wisdom of the godly type. For even worldly wisdom dictates that we do something constructive and productive with our time, so that we can get ahead in the material aspects of life, and godly wisdom adds the winning of souls for Jesus to the mix.
 
So, all in all, Monday is a very important day in the life, whether you’re a believer or not, since if you don’t work at a worldly job, you most likely won’t eat, and if you don’t work for Jesus, your rewards in heaven would be minimal or even non-existent.
 
And having said all of that, which hopefully won’t fall on deaf ears, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with great conviction, to reassure Jesus that we’re up and about and ready to join the battle on His behalf against the evil Lucifer and his band of evil cohorts. So let those vocal chords loudly declare in sweet harmony, our convictions, re Jesus and His Holy and most worthwhile cause.
 
As one now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together.
 
We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour.
 
We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’
 
And you can see that if we adhere to what we just sang, then we’d not be like the priest and the Levite, who both passed by on the other side, but be as Jesus desires of us, like the Samaritan in our Bit. ‘But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him.’
 
Ah my brethren, that word compassion is a mighty word, and a defining one in the lexicon of the believer. But before we get into that, let’s get some historical background from the scholars on the basic situation. ‘Jews and Samaritans were bitter rivals (John 4:9). The Samaritans were despised for having at least partial Gentile ancestry (due to Assyria’s conquest of Samaria in 721 B.C) and for having a different worship centre (Mount Gerizim; John 4:20).
 
Thus Jesus’ parable was highly provocative. Samaritan was to Jesus’ hearers automatically a term of reproach. To portray a Samaritan as fulfilling the commandment (see v.27), but Jews as circumventing it, would be a supreme insult to the listening lawyer (v.25) and the rest of His audience.’
 
Now that gives us some insight into the true meaning and importance of the parable. It also reminds us of one of Jesus’ many other provocative and unorthodox but wise teachings; LOVE your enemies, of which He reassures us thus: ‘Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, LOVE your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully (spitefully) use you;
 
That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye LOVE them which LOVE you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans (tax collectors, sinners) the same? and if ye salute (greet) your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.’ (Matt.5:43-48) 
 
Oh my people, I never intended to use all of that scripture, but after reading it, I realized that I had to since one part was no good without the others. And now I’ve seen some interesting info from the scholars that brings greater understanding to it.
 
‘The law of LOVE, sometimes called “law of Christ,” summarizes the ethical principle of the Sermon on the Mount. “LOVE thy neighbour” summarizes the entire second table of the law (cf. Lev.19:18-34). But the unscriptural addition “hate thine enemy” was a popular concept in Jesus’ day. 
 

The admonition LOVE your enemies is one of the greatest statements Jesus ever made. The LOVE enjoined in this passage is LOVE that originates from God Himself. Man is not commanded to attempt to LOVE his enemy on the basis of mere human affection but rather on the basis of a LOVE that comes from God.
 
The quality of LOVE commanded here is expressed by giving. Bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that persecute you. LOVING an enemy involves doing good toward that enemy in order to win him over to Christ.’
 
Oh Friends, there’s a lot for us to ponder on and meditate today, so let’s get to it nuh. Let’s consider the Good Samaritan and LOVING our enemy aspects of lives, and if we’re falling short in these areas, then let’s come to the Father and ask for His gracious forgiveness and His awesome strength to get with the program. For that my Friends, is heavenly wisdom. Much LOVE!
 
…to reciprocate kindness is natural…but to truly serve Jesus…we must take it one step further…be kind to those who are not kind to us…