Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 January 2019 Luke 11:13.

Luke 11:13.   ​If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?
 

Ah Friends, it’s still white and somewhat beautiful, but possibly even more dangerous, deceptive and slippery because it’s also deeper! Yeh, not a single snowplough nor sand truck has come by to work on my neighbourhood since the first snowfall on Friday, and it’s been snowing some everyday since! I wonder where the people whom we paid so much money a couple months ago to clean our drive way are eh? 

And I’m sure the crooked councilors on the City Council are soon going to write me raising my property taxes, citing the increased cost of snow removal, when they’re removing less and less snow every year! Chuh! And the worst part of it all is that I’d planned to resume driving today, and celebrating by driving to church, planning to boast about how I had the best shotgun rider, Jesus Christ riding shotgun with me! (smile) 

But the powers that be seem to have had other ideas. I don’t even know how deep the snow is in my driveway, and there aren’t even any tire tracks in the lane. Added to that, I’ve never driven this car in so much snow yet, because I only got it in the summer, so I don’t know exactly how it will react. 

And I definitely don’t want to go out there and screw up my shoulder fighting with the steering and whatever else might happen. I even tried to contact my pastor to find out what was happening but could not get him either. So I decided to err on the path of caution, and stay home. So having said all of that to say nothing, (smile) let’s have church! 

And today we’re going to be opening the celebrations with those wonderful words of John Newton that we all know and LOVE so much, ‘Amazing Grace.’ And as the GodTube website tells us: ‘This song isn’t a song of theology—it’s John Newton’s own heartfelt expression of gratitude to God, who helped him turn from his profane and wicked life and eventually fight against the ills he practiced. Later in life, Newton became a supporter and inspiration to William Wilberforce who lead the fight to pass the British Slave Trade Act in 1807, which abolished the slave trade in that empire.’ 

Ah my people, our great God works in such wonderful and miraculous ways, that if He could save a die-hard heathen like Newton, He can save any of us. So let’s sing those awesome words with true heartfelt gratitude, giving all praise and thanks to a most merciful and gracious God. 

‘Amazing grace! How sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found; Was blind, but now I see. Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; ’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far, And grace will lead me home. The Lord has promised good to me, His Word my hope secures; He will my Shield and Portion be, As long as life endures. 

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail, And mortal life shall cease, I shall possess, within the veil, A life of joy and peace. The earth shall soon dissolve like snow, The sun forbear to shine; But God, who called me here below, Will be forever mine. When we’ve been there ten thousand years, Bright shining as the sun, We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise Than when we’d first begun.’ 

Ah mih breddren, can you imagine those words being written by a drunken, profligate sailor involved in the slave trade eh? But the story goes that on March 21, 1748, Newton’s ship was being battered by a major storm and he was lashed to the helm to try and keep the ship on course. He was there from one o’clock till midnight. 

That’s plenty time to think when one’s life seems to be slipping away. And apparently it was during that time the Lord knocked loudly on the door of his heart, and he never forgot it, writing:  “On that day the Lord sent from on high and delivered me out of deep waters.” 

How many of us has God delivered out of deep waters eh my people, and not necessarily deep waters literally, but figuratively? Oh people, I am one of those He delivered out of deep waters literally on Lake Ontario many years ago, and whenever I remember that traumatic experience I surely give Him thanks and praise. 

And, “Many years later, as an old man, Newton wrote in his diary of March 21, 1805: “Not well able to write; but I endeavor to observe the return of this day with humiliation, prayer, and praise.” Only God’s amazing grace could and would take a rude, profane, slave-trading sailor and transform him into a child of God. Newton never ceased to stand in awe of God’s work in his life.” 

And neither should we, my believing brethren. It’s also been said that Newton, though he realized the folly of his life, still felt that he was beyond saving, even if the Good Book was true; that is until he read the reassuring words of Jesus in our Bit. ‘If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?’  

Now that’s a very good question my brethren! One we should truly ponder ourselves, like Newton apparently did. And while doing that, we should also consider these most appropriate verses from James. ‘Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness (variation), neither shadow of turning. Of his own will he begat us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of first fruits of his creatures.’ (James 1:17-18) 

Yeh friends, God is the Creator of Everything, and Giver of ALL good things! He’s ONLY and ALWAYS GOOD! He ‘s immutable, DOESN’T change! And all those who have been redeemed are His firstfruits; the first step in His redemption plan for ALL creation! 

So let’s consider all of that today nuh, and hope and pray and ask Him to help us come up higher in our faith walk and our undying LOVE for Him! That’s all we can do as mere mortals. But the right motives of our hearts do make a big difference with our heavenly Father! Much LOVE!

…the GRACE of God…the most powerful MOVER and SHAKER in His universe… 

P.S. The quotes above come from the GodTube website and John Newton Discovered Amazing Grace @Christianity.com. 

P.P.S. And would you believe, just as I’m about to send out the Bit, I hear them cleaning my drive way! Steups! Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 June 2017 2 Corinthians 9:6.

2 Corinthians 9:6.   But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully (with blessings) shall reap bountifully.

Well greetings and salutations on this beautiful Summer Sunday morning my fellow believers! May the wonderful grace of God and His awesome peace be with and among us as we meet in His sanctuary to praise, worship, thank and glorify Him. And to get us going, let’s sing those heartfelt words of John Newton written so long ago, when he finally found God, and aptly titled ‘Amazing Grace.’

So with much passion and humble sincerity, let’s raise our voices in sacrificial praise to Almighty God. ‘Amazing grace! How sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found; Was blind, but now I see. ’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, And grace my fears relieved; How precious did that grace appear The hour I first believed. 

Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; ’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far, And grace will lead me home. The Lord has promised good to me, His Word my hope secures; He will my Shield and Portion be, As long as life endures. Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail, And mortal life shall cease, I shall possess, within the veil, A life of joy and peace. 

The earth shall soon dissolve like snow, The sun forbear to shine; But God, who called me here below, Will be forever mine. When we’ve been there ten thousand years, Bright shining as the sun, We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise Than when we’d first begun.’ 

Oh friends, what a magnanimous God we serve and worship! His undying and undeserving grace and mercy are what keep us going in this evil world. His is the salvation and eternal life to which we look, like a bright shining beacon in the dark, stormy night, offering guidance and safety from the perils on our earthly journey. 

No wonder Jesus declared, ’I am the light of the world!’ For without Him, our world would be covered in total darkness, the cover Lucifer needs for his evil deeds. So please let’s be everlastingly grateful for the brilliant and lifesaving light of Jesus nuh, which gives us true hope, faith and trust for the future.  

Now let’s turn to our Bit; one of the life principles of our great God. ‘But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully (with blessings) shall reap bountifully.’ More awesome truth of Scripture my people! Whatever we give out, shall be given back to us; whatever we sow, we shall reap, and sometimes in greater quantity too, whether it be good or evil. 

And today we’ll simply peruse some scriptures which agree with our premise. So listen to Cousin Sol as he contrasts the doings of the wise and foolish. ‘There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that witholdeth more than is meet (right), but it tendeth (leads) to poverty. The liberal soul shall be made fat (prosperous): and he that watereth shall be watered also himself. He that witholdeth corn, the people shall curse him: but blessing shall be on the head of him that selleth it.’ (Prov.11:24-26) 

Oh friends, yuh see, when we scatter, or water, or sell, meaning being generous in our giving, it usually leads to prosperity, but being miserly tends to poverty. So if we are interested in having a full and prosperous life, then we must be generous in our giving and helping. 

Meanwhile, the psalmist in Psalm 112 – Blessed is the man that feareth the Lord – joyfully declares: ‘A good man showeth favour (is gracious), and lendeth: he will guide his affairs with discretion (justice)… He hath dispersed (distributed abroad), he hath given to the poor; his righteousness endureth for ever; his horn (strength) shall be exalted with honour. The wicked shall see it, and be grieved: he shall gnash with his teeth, and melt away: the desire of the wicked shall perish.’ (Ps.112: 5, 9-10) 

Yes precious people of God, as Christians we are called to live righteous and noble lives, giving and helping from humble and sincere hearts as our Leader, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ did in His earthly sojourn, two thousand years ago.  

And Moses warned the Israelites long before that: ‘If there be among you a poor man of one of thy brethren within any of thy gates (towns) in thy land which the Lord thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, nor shut thine hand from thy poor brother: But thou shalt open thine hand wide (freely) unto him, and shall surely lend him sufficient for his need in that which he wanteth.’ (Deut.15:7-8) 

You can’t get away from it friends, the Lord has shown us LOVE and mercy and grace, and He expects us to do the same with our fellow humans. Now if some of us would only share some of the much we have with others in desperate need, there wouldn’t be as much poverty, sickness, homelessness and despair in our world today. 

But don’t forget, the Lord is watching each of us to see how we use the resources He so generously bestowed on us, and we’ll eventually have to answer for our good or bad stewardship. Now let’s end with a timely word from Bruh Paul to the Galatians. ‘Be not deceived; God is not mocked (fooled, outwitted)” for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.’ (Gal.6:7) Words of utmost wisdom friends! 

So let’s remember that generosity is at the heart of the Lord, and it should also be a major priority in ours, if we sincerely desire to be true disciples of Christ. Much LOVE!

…you can only harvest what you sow…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 August 2016 Psalm 66:16.

Psalm 66:16.    Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he hath done for my soul.

Aye friends, I know that it’s Friday and all that; that you all are shouting out very loudly and enthusiastically: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes! The weekend done come… and the party soon start…and going all weekend long too! Thank God for Fridays and the weekend!’ 

Well mih people, I want us to begin the party right here by singing a wonderful old song that we all know and LOVE. Last night I heard a most stirring rendition of it from Uncle Charles’ (Charles Stanley’s) programme, In Touch, featuring a youngster whose name I believe was William Kemp, leading the First Baptist Church of Atlanta’s choir and congregation. The music was beautiful too… 

Oh friends it sounded so good to me that I knew the Father had to be tapping, two stepping in the aisles of heaven. (smile) He definitely couldn’t sit still with such wonderful praise and worship reaching His heavenly home. And I knew that we just had to begin this morning’s proceedings with a wonderful rendition of it also. 

So please sing with me: ‘Amazing grace! How sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found; Was blind, but now I see. ’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, And grace my fears relieved; How precious did that grace appear The hour I first believed. 

Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; ’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far,And grace will lead me home. The Lord has promised good to me, His Word my hope secures; He will my Shield and Portion be, As long as life endures. 

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail, And mortal life shall cease, I shall possess, within the veil, A life of joy and peace. The earth shall soon dissolve like snow, The sun forbear to shine; But God, who called me here below, Will be forever mine. 

When we’ve been there ten thousand years, Bright shining as the sun, We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise Than when we’d first begun. Amazing grace…how sweet the sound…that saved a wretch like me… I once was lost…but now I’m found…was blind…but now I see…’ 

Oh my believing brethren, what beautiful words and sentiments from the old slave trader, John Newton! Yuh see what can happen when Almighty God touches our hearts! So though you may falter in your walk with God, please DON’T GIVE UP, because with just one miraculous thought He can change your whole life! 

That brings us to our Bit, from Psalm 66 – The great works of God. ‘Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he hath done for my soul.’ And precious people of God, we couldn’t ask for a better testimony of God’s grace and mercy than the words of John Newton that we just sang! 

And the psalmist continues after our Bit with a short testimony of his own. ‘I cried unto him with my mouth, and he was extolled (praised, exalted) with my tongue. If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me: But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer, nor his mercy from me.’ (Ps.66:17-20) 

Yes my brethren, our merciful and gracious God will not turn away His ear from our prayer if our hearts are contrite and humble. Oh friends, why would He ever do such a thing eh, when He has specifically promised to bless those who come to him in humble repentance eh? 

Listen to the psalmist from Psalm 34 – The Lord hears the righteous. ‘The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit (crushed in spirit).’ (Ps.34:18) 

And Isaiah confidently declares: ‘For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.’  (Is.57:15) 

Oh what a beautiful promise my brethren! That’s why a man like John Newton, with such terrible deeds on his conscience, could come to Jehovah God and receive mercy, forgiveness and grace to ease his aching soul. The same options are still open today for each and every human being on planet earth my people. 

We just have to be brave and come to God with whatever is bothering us. He will dispose of our sins as far as the east is from the west, and give us grace and mercy to begin a new life under the protective umbrella of His mighty wings. 

And believe me friends, there is no better place to be in these trying and tempestuous times as under the protection of God, the Creator of the universe and all therein! Now, being cognizant of our short span minds, (smile) we’ll stop here for today, and continue the same trend tomorrow, God willing of course. 

Now let’s go home chanting our Friday Chant, so that we can get a better perspective on how to use the weekend. 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.’ 

Please put those words into action my people, because they will certainly benefit us when Monday comes along. Much LOVE!

…without God’s transforming grace and mercy…mankind would certainly have perished a long, long time ago…