Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 May 2019 Ephesians 6:11.

Ephesians 6:11.    ​Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (devious schemes) of the devil.
 
And after a rainy Sunday for Mother’s Day, it looks like we going to have a rainy Monday for work too! Chuh! What’s with this rain eh? And I know for many people it’s like the brother and sister duo, the Carpenters said in their 1971 hit song ‘Rainy days and Mondays always get me down.’ 

Yeh, there’s something about rain that brings out the sadness and blues in us, like sunshine brings out the joy and gladness. And when it’s the first day of the workweek, it just makes it worse! But please remember my people, we have the eternal light, the light of all lights, Jesus Christ in our corner, so even if you’re feeling down and blue this rainy Monday morning, we just need to turn to Him for help, and He will gladly assist us. 

So let’s just lay it all before Him right now with true sincerity, as we declare (right ho!) our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 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!’ 

Yes friends, that’s our antidote for whatever ails us on a Monday morning! And I see its working, because you’re stepping higher and lighter already, and your eyes have that bright light of Jesus shining in them, and you’re just more business like as the Spirit of Jesus works on you. Glory to God! 

And today friends, the Lord has put it on my heart to talk to us, to remind us of that spiritual and protective armour we pray about every Monday, how important it is for us believers to be always ensconced in it. As Bruh Paul commanded the Ephesians: ‘Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (devious schemes) of the devil.’ 

Yes my faithful saints in Christ, we are in a war, a war against the forces of evil, and soldiers can’t go to war without proper protection. That’s why the scholars tell us to ‘put on’ denotes a sense of urgency, demanding immediate action. And to stand has military overtones. This verb was used in classical Greek meaning to resist the enemy and hold a critical position.’ 

So we need to be always aware of what’s happening around us and stand strong for Jesus. But what makes it even more difficult is as Bruh Paul says: ‘For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world (age), against spiritual (spiritual hosts of) wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.’ (Eph.6:12-13) 

Oh friends, please don’t take this all lightly, we are in a serious war with the satanic forces of evil, and a lot of it exists in the high places and powers of this world, plus there are fallen angels, demons and Satan himself. And besides, it’s not only a war being waged against the church proper, but also against individual believers like you and me. 

And the scholars explain verse 13 thus: ‘6:13. Wherefore means “because of this,” that is, because we face such a formidable foe, we must avail ourselves of God’s provision lest the enemy destroy our Christian witness and ministry. The evil day refers to the periodic demonic onslaughts and satanic assaults. Having done all includes both dressing in God’s armour and resisting Satan. Having done all these things, be ready, for the Devil will attack again and again.’ 

Oh friends, that last part is ever so true! If it’s one thing we can count on is that the forces of evil will always be on our case, especially since we’re believers, since their avowed plan is to make believers look foolish and fall for their wiles, lies and other evil schemes. That’s why we have to be ever so careful and take our Monday Morning Battle Hymn very seriously, because it’s a prayer for help, for the ability to resist the enemy, and even more to fight a strong and victorious fight in Jesus’ name! 

Oh my people, my people, believe me, the battle is getting hotter with each passing day, because the enemy is seeing that he’s losing and is trying to fight back; yuh know like how a wild animal behaves when its back is against a wall, so we just have to stand up strong and steadfast, dressed in our powerful armour, and allow the Holy Spirit to lead us out to battle! Glory to our great God! 

And we’ll end there today. Tomorrow we’ll talk about the various parts of the spiritual armour that we need to stand before the enemy and defeat him. Till then, may the grace of God bless all His saints and keep us safe from harm, as we step out courageously to fight the enemy, and may we all live to fight another day! This we pray, in Jesus’ name! Amen! Much LOVE!

…God’s saints can’t fight His spiritual battle victoriously…if they’re not clothed in His spiritual armour…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 May 2019 Hebrews 4:19

Hebrews 4:19.   ​Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

 

Oh my people, my people, it’s certainly true that wonders never cease in this God-given and God controlled universe, but daily they increase! Wow! Would you believe that we finally had two, note TWO sun filled days without rain? Glory be! 

And would you also believe that the ole fella took advantage of that wonderful and unexpected situation by sitting, for the first time this year on my front porch in just my old bathrobe and soaking up the warm and healing rays of the early afternoon sun as it came cascading down from a bright blue heaven? 

Oh, was it ever marvellous to feel some warm sunshine after having been incapacitated for the last couple of weeks by an unrelenting cold and cough! I sat down out there for over half an hour, while God’s healing LOVE just shone down on me, as well as enjoying the wonderful sight of God’s amazing springtime handiwork with the dry branches of the much deflated and weather conflicted trees, as they finally push forth some green buds. 

It was also nice and encouraging to see people driving by in shirtsleeves with their windows down and their arms propped thereon to catch some long missed energizing rays! The only thing that spoiled my excitement was a moment when a neighbour decided to come out with his lawn mower to cut the li’l piece of grass that he calls his. 

Chuh! Does it ever annoy and irritate me when these lawn mowers get going exactly when I’m trying to rest! It began since Saturday…and yes, my li’l patch of grass needs cutting too, and no doubt my groundskeeper will show up sometime this week in the afternoon hours to disturb my afternoon rest. But I guess that’s the price one has to pay for living in the suburbia. 

Overall though the li’l stint in the hot sun was quite enjoyable…so much so that when I came back inside I felt drunk, yeh, intoxicated, inebriated, black up from the unaccustomed rays of a warm sun! Now that’s my yesterday story and I’m sticking to it! 

And what’s my today story, you ask? Well that’s simply I care about you my faithful readers so much that I am up at five in the morning to write the Bit because I have to go into the concrete jungle named Toronto for an early morning medical appointment! Wouldn’t want you to be receiving it too late now! (smile) 

Now here’s an interesting poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s titled ‘This Too Is Faith!’ Please pray with me: ‘Lord, I am desperately afraid Of tempestuous waves. Had I been on the ship The day you stilled the storm (Matt.8:23-27) I would have been the first To scream for help – This I shamelessly admit. But, Lord, this too is faith: Boldly expecting You To do something about it.’ 

Yes friends, as I read that yesterday, it occurred to me that that was quite true. Not because you are afraid and cry out for help means you don’t have faith; perhaps not enough, but merely crying out to God and expecting Him to do something to ease your situation is also a measure of faith! 

Nowhere does it say in the Good Book that we won’t ever be accosted by the enemy’s attempts to have us succumb to the negative emotion of fear, but it does say that when those times come, we must have sufficient faith to cry out to God; cry out with confidence that He can and will do something about it! 

And the Scripture Promise for that poem is also our Bit for today; these glorious and ever so encouraging words. ‘Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.’ 

Oh my faithful followers of Christ, that is such a heart-warming and encouraging scripture! Why? Because it lets us know in no uncertain terms that whatever is our problem we can always come confidently, but humbly and reverently, before God’s throne and receive His ever-available grace and mercy! 

We are Sons of God now, and that means we can go to our heavenly Father, just like we do to our earthly ones, for help and succour in our times of need! And the reason for all of that goodness and mercy is simply the work of Jesus Christ. 

Listen to these two preceding verses: ‘Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into (through) the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (sympathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (our weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.’ (Heb.4:14-15) 

Yes my brethren, Jesus suffered temptation, just like we’re doing, so He can therefore understand our problems with the enemy. The only difference is that He did not sin. Unfortunately though, we’re not that blessed, so we have to resort to Him and the Father to gain the strength to withstand the enemy’s attacks. 

And I like how the scholars explain our Bit. ‘4:16. Only Christianity provides such boldness for sinful men before a holy God, and that boldness is possible only because of our High Priest; Jesus Christ. The figure of a throne suggests a place of authority and provision. It is the place to obtain God’s grace when it is especially needed.’ And isn’t that the awesome truth my fellow saints in Christ! Glory to our great God! 

Now let’s be assured of all that we’ve spoken about today and go home sincerely declaring (right ho!) our Tuesday Mantra, loudly telling the world who and whose we are. As one now: ‘In God’s eyes, 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!’ 

And if we really mean it, then let’s go out and action it nuh, as Jesus so greatly desires of us. Much LOVE!

…in Jesus Christ…we have ALL that we’ll ever need…give Him much thanks and praise…  

P.S. Would you believe that outside is wet? Ah Lord eh! We couldn’t make three days straight of sunshine! (smile)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 July 2017 Psalm 95:6.

Psalm 95:6.    O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.

Oh Glory to God my fellow believers for blessing us with another bountiful day on Planet Earth! And also for giving us the wonderful privilege of being able to gather together, in His sanctuary this Sabbath Sunday morning, to praise and worship Him and to hear His awesome word, which, as its truth seeps into our hearts and souls will strengthen us, by giving us His mercy, grace and guidance to face the upcoming week! 

What a wonderful God we serve and worship my people! Every day He gives me greater reason to make that declaration. And when I reached out for a song of praise and worship for us to sing today, I just felt like getting closer to our Maker, hence this old hymn, ‘Nearer My God to Thee,’ written in the 19th century by Sarah Adams. 

It is based on the topic of loyalty and the scriptures of Genesis 28:11-13, when God spoke to Jacob at Bethel and promised to make his progeny abundant and prosperous. It’s also based on Psalm 42:2: – An intense longing for God. ‘My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before him.’ 

Therefore friends, this morning, if our souls indeed thirst for the living God, then let’s offer the sacrifice of praise from our lips, as we endeavour to get closer, or as close as we can get to Him on this our earthly journey. So in full voice, in unison and perfect harmony, let’s sing! ‘Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee! E’en though it be a cross that raiseth me, Still all my song shall be, nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain: Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee!) 

Though like the wanderer, the sun gone down, Darkness be over me, my rest a stone; Yet in my dreams I’d be nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain) There let the way appear, steps unto Heav’n; All that Thou sendest me, in mercy giv’n; Angels to beckon me nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain) Then, with my waking thoughts bright with Thy praise, Out of my stony griefs Bethel I’ll raise; So by my woes to be nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain) 

Or, if on joyful wing cleaving the sky, Sun, moon, and stars forgot, upward I’ll fly, Still all my song shall be, nearer, my God, to Thee. (Refrain) There in my Father’s home, safe and at rest, There in my Savior’s love, perfectly blest; Age after age to be nearer, my God, to Thee. Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee! Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee!’ 

Oh faithful saints of Christ, that was marvellous! And as we sang, one could feel the strong and beautiful presence of God in His house! The heartfelt feelings were so sincere that He had no choice but to grace us with His Holy presence! 

Now let’s continue in that same vein; the sincere seeking and longing for and getting closer to God by invoking the glorious words and advice of our Bit. ‘O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.’ That’s the ultimate act my brethren; coming before the Lord in sincere, heartfelt prayer! Why, you ask? 

Listen as the psalmist explains after our Bit. ‘For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand (under His care). (Ps.95:7a) There could be no better reason than that friends: we are beholden to our great and wonderful God in each and every aspect of our lives! We are His people, and He cares for us, both in LOVE and by providing our earthly needs every day. 

But then the psalmist does something strange; he pleads with us: ‘Today if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your heart, as in the provocation (rebellion); and as in the day of temptation (trial or testing) in the wilderness. When your fathers tempted (tried) me, proved me, and saw my work.’(Ps.95:7b-9) 

Now why would anyone in their right mind, rebel against God and try to test Him eh? Especially after they had seen the wonderful miracles he had performed on their behalf while bringing them out of four hundred years of bondage in Egypt? Only a people mad with lustful desires of the flesh, egged on by Lucifer could be so obtuse as to rebel against their maker. 

Consequently, the psalmist, speaking on God’s behalf, continues: ‘Forty years long was I grieved with (disgusted with) this generation, and said, It is a people that do err (go astray) in their heart, and they have not known my ways: Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest.’ (Ps.95:10-11) And God fulfilled His promised, when only Caleb and Joshua of all those who had left Egypt, set foot in the Promised Land. 

For forty years the Israelites wandered aimlessly in the desert because of their disobedience to Almighty God. And friends, it just boggles my imagination that they could be so stupid after seeing all the miracles of God! No other group of people, to this day, has seen God work so miraculously on their behalf. Just the parting of the Red Sea should have been enough to convince them forever. 

However friends, they saw it and didn’t believe, we didn’t see it, but let’s be wise nuh; let’s believe and be obedient, otherwise we will not enter into God’s rest. And let these words of Jesus to His doubting disciple Thomas, be a sure promise to us. ‘Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.’(John 20:29) 

Words of absolute wisdom my brethren! Words to wisely and confidently live by! Much LOVE!

…true faith in Jesus…means…believing…without…or before seeing…