Today’s Scrip-Bit   17 January 2023 Luke 18:1.

Luke 18:1.       And he (Jesus) spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint (lose heart).

Ah well, they say good things never last forever, and who am I to doubt them eh? (smile) It seems like the dry and brilliant sunlit scene we’ve been experiencing for the last few days is now over. Sadly, we’ve gone back to the wet, gloomy, cloudy days of yore. (smile) But we won’t allow it to kill our spirits, because we have the Master of all goodness and encouragement living within us, His august and holy name is Jesus Christ! The name that’s above every other name, and to which every knee will eventually bow. And the sooner we believe and bow, the better off we’ll be. 

Now, as I was sitting here wondering what to write, while skimming through the Good Library, I came upon this most apropos passage of scriptures, where Bruh Paul is praying for the Ephesians not to worry about him and his tribulations. ‘Wherefore I desire (ask) that ye faint not (not lose heart) at my tribulations for you, which is your glory.’ (Eph. 3:13) 

Now only Bruh Paul could pen a verse like that. And the scholars tell us it means that ‘God will use Paul’s tribulations and sufferings in the ministry to spiritually benefit his recipients. Such edification will then bring about glory on their part in that they praise and honour God.’ Yes friends, that’s the benefit of the testimony of other saints; it teaches and encourages us. 

Thus, all the suffering and tribulation that Bruh Paul went through for Christ’s sake should be an eye-opening education and enlightenment also to us in these exceedingly tough and ungodly times. Just like he plowed through the ungodly times in which he lived, we too should be plowing through our times, using him as an example. But what I really want to highlight today, is Bruh Paul’s actual prayer for the church. 

He says: ‘For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in LOVE, May be able to comprehend (understand) with all saints what is the breadth (width), and length, and depth, and height; And to know the LOVE of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.’ (Eph. 3:14-19) 

Wow! What an empowering and heart felt prayer. It’s not about material riches, but rather spiritual enlightenment and understanding! Let’s check it our verse by verse nuh, so we can better understand it. In verse 14, Bruh Paul is resuming his prayer begun in verse one, but delayed by all the other stuff in verses 2-12. Meanwhile verse 15 illuminates us to the fact that ALL the saints, both past and present are named by God, in other words, they, and subsequently us, derive our spiritual life from God. 

Then In verses 16-19, Bruh Paul prays for three things. (1) ‘That they would be strengthened with might by his Spirit; that is, they be divinely enabled to successfully live the Christian life. (2) That the readers be able to comprehend…the LOVE of Christ; that is, to better understand the enormous LOVE Christ has for them, (as well as for us). And (3) that they might be filled with all the fullness of God; that is, that the life, character and virtues of God Himself may be fully developed in them.’ 

Ah my brethren, that’s the kind of prayer Bruh Paul made for most of the churches that he wrote to; for spiritual enlightenment rather than material advancement. And it’s something we should also consider doing, because it falls into line with Jesus’ command: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:34) Yes my people, when we are spiritually inspired, our material wants then naturally fall into place, through God’s grace and mercy, we don’t have to strive to achieve them. 

But wait, Bruh Paul’s not done with his prayer as yet. He continues: ‘Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.’ (Eph. 3:20-21) 

And that’s possibly the most important part of the prayer. Why? The scholars tell us that ‘in making the three petitions above in vs. 16-19, Paul has not asked for too much. For he prays unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that he can ask or think.’ Yes, he’s praying to Almighty God, the One who can do any and everything! So it’s not an empty, futile prayer to a deity that cannot fulfill it, but to the God who created the universe and still controls it! 

And on the point of prayer, I do believe that our lives lack the proper stimulation because we don’t pray enough, and when we do pray, we don’t ask for the right things, things that are in God’s will. Remember this oh so important Bible verse. ‘And he (Jesus) spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint (lose heart).’ (Luke 18:1) Then James tells us: ‘Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts (desires for pleasure).’ (James 4:3) 

And that’s the gospel truth! Most of the time we go to God in prayer is to ask for stuff, stuff that doesn’t fall into His will, stuff that is mainly for our carnal pleasure. So obviously we won’t get it. Then we get displeased with God and foolishly declare that He doesn’t answer prayer. But it’s the same way when our children come to us for things that we don’t think they should have, we tell them no. I guess though, it’s all right for us to say no to them, but not for God to say no to us. (smile) That’s our typical selfish human behaviour, so wonderfully encapsulated in the cliché: ‘do as I say, not as I do.’ 

Anyway, we’ve said enough for today, (smile) so let’s go home now declaring (yesss!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know to whom we belong, lock, stock and barrel. In strong and sincere voice: ‘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 my immediate neighbours, as well as with the whole wide world! Glory be!’ 

Now my fellow believers, let’s go out and do just that nuh; share the amazing LOVE and friendship of Christ with others, so that they too can come to know and LOVE Him like we do! Much LOVE!

…the Spirit-filled life…can bring about the material-filled life…but not vice versa… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ    

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   3 January 2023 Ephesians 4:23.

Ephesians 4:23.       And be ye renewed in the spirit of your mind:

And this Tuesday morning, the third day of 2023, the first working day of the year for many of us, has opened somewhat damp and cloudy in my area. But as always, the joy in our hearts over a new year is usually enough to compensate for that, especially since we still have some of the recent balmy above freezing weather with us. (smile) However, the important question today is what New Year’s resolutions have we made, and have we made keepable ones? Undoubtedly, like years past, in the first couple of weeks, we’ll be strong on those resolutions, but then as everyday life begins to take us over again, we will begin falling off of those lofty heights that we promised ourselves to journey on in this new year. 

But yuh know friends, we can all avoid that falling off by simply making ONE resolution each and every year, that of desiring, and therefore, trying, doing everything we can, to live for and with Jesus! Now that just makes everything so simple and uncomplicated. You don’t have to remember a whole lot of stuff. For Jesus said it so clearly: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) Wow! How easy that is my people! All we do is seek God’s kingdom and His righteousness, and all our needs, everything else will fall into place. that’s Jesus’ promise. 

The problem though is that we don’t fully believe it as we should, so we keep on trying to live life on our own terms, which sometimes turns out fairly well, but never reaches its full capacity because it doesn’t have the anointing of God on it. And I’m chuckling here because I was just ready to go off on a different tangent when the Holy Spirit reminded me that I’d promised that if God spared us today, we’d continue looking at practical aspects of the new life in Christ, as Bruh Paul wrote to the church at Ephesus. Thank You Holy Spirit! Otherwise, I would have begun the new year with a most inauspicious mark of not keeping my promise, and we just cannot have that!  (smile) 

Anyhow, enough talk, let’s get to our subject. And Bruh Paul expatiates on the new life in Christ thus: ‘That ye put off the concerning the former conversation (conduct) the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be ye renewed in the spirit of your mind: And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.’ (Eph. (4:22-24) 

Ah friends, that’s exactly what we need to do at the beginning of this new year; throw off all the baggage we’re still carrying around from our old way of life and move into the new way that’s promoted by Christ.  And here are some practical and easy ways…well they might not be so easy for some of us who are addicted to the old ways, but with the help of Jesus, they are indeed possible to change, if we are serious about invoking the new man. 

So, Bruh Paul advises: ‘Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man the truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.’ (Eph. 4:25) And speaking the truth to each other is about as good a place to begin as any, my fellow believers, for this world is so polluted with lies, deceits and distrust that it’s indeed difficult to know what’s true from what’s not. And remember one of the essential parts of God’s spiritual armour is the belt of truth ‘having your loins girt about with truth.’ (Eph. 6:14) 

Then what about these practical aspects of living the new life eh? ‘Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place (an opportunity) to the devil. Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.’ (Eph. 4:26-28) 

Ah mih bredrin, doesn’t that sound interesting? And most of us will say yes, but it’s the changing and then the keeping of those directives that cause the problems. However, if we are basically good people, they really shouldn’t cause us that many problems nuh, because good people don’t lie and steal, get angry easily and refuse to work. And with Jesus’ help, it’s all possible. That’s what we need to always remember: living for Christ automatically includes His help. And remember that we can do all things with His amazing and powerful help. (Phil 4:13) 

Neither forget we this tidbit from Bruh Paul to the Thessalonians. ‘For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat. For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.’ (2 Thess. 3:10-11) Now can you imagine if we actually imposed that rule in our society, the amount of starvation we’d have added to the great amount we already have, because there are so many who work very little or not at all, but are causing all sorts of problems. 

They are doing exactly what Bruh Paul recommends we don’t do. ‘Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.’ (Eph. 4:29) Oh my people, my people, we desperately need to put that advice into action, because this society is so filled with corrupt communication, especially with the current prevalence of social media, that it just boggles the imagination. And sadly, very little of it is indeed worthy of edifying and ministering grace to us. 

Then Bruh Paul makes this solemn plea: ‘And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.’ (Eph. 4:30) Now that is something we should all try to avoid. And you ask how can we grieve the Holy Spirit? By simply doing the things we know we should not do, by not listening to His guidance and leading! Remember the Holy Spirit is a person, and thus has feelings and those feelings can be aggrieved like ours, cause Him pain, when the right things are not done in His sight. 

But thankfully we won’t have to worry about grieving the Holy Spirit because from now on we’ll be concentrating on doing the right things in His sight. We’ll do what Bruh Paul further advises. ‘Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.’ (Eph. 4;31-32) Now those are some of the practical aspects of putting on the new man and living for Christ! And can you imagine the great difference it would make to our world if we believers should sincerely try to adopt them. 

So please, let’s make sincerely living for Christ our New Year’s resolution nuh. That is if we sincerely want to change our world for the better. And for those of us who are doing our best to live for Christ, let’s go home declaring (yesss!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting all and sundry know to whom we belong, lock, stock and barrel. As one voice: ‘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 my immediate neighbours, as well as with the whole wide world! Glory be!’ 

And the addendum to that is to go out and share that amazing LOVE and friendship of Christ with others, so that they too can come to know and LOVE Him like we do! Much LOVE!

…to see positive change…one has to take off the old and put on the new…which is found only in Christ Jesus… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ          

Today’s Scrip-Bit   1 January 2023   2 Corinthians 5:21.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

2 Corinthians 5:21.        For he (God) hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

And then it was New Year’s Day! Wow! Christmas of 2022 is in the books and the new year of 2023 has begun with the same rush as the old one went out in! (smile) Anyway, we’re wishing a Happy New Year of 2023 to all our Scrip-Bit friends and families all over God’s great earth! And we hope and pray that this year will be better than the last, but let’s remember that any improvement must begin with each of us first improving our individual selves, then getting together in sincere fellowship and building Christ’s body, His church! 

Now let’s also hope that we did not party too much in the New Year’s Eve celebrations last night, to remember that today is Sunday, the Lord’s Day, and we needs must get up and go to His sanctuary and praise and worship Him with other believers for His wonderful deeds to the children of men. And as always, we’ll begin with a song of praise, but for this New Year’s Day I wanted something special, a song that would give us some encouragement and hope for this upcoming year, which won’t be an easy one. 

Let’s not fool ourselves into thinking that 2023 will be a banner year for peace and LOVE. Much as I desire it to be so, the current worldwide situation doesn’t promise it. Yes friends, with all the anger, strife, greed, selfishness, hunger for power and jealousy currently permeating our world, it only portends, is a sign of tougher times. But then again, we have Jesus, so there’s no need to be overly concerned. If we do our best, He’s promised to do the rest. And He is a faithful keeper of His promises. 

Anyhow, getting back to today’s song, I believe it’s a perfect fit for all that we’re going through on this first day of 2023. It’s one of our favourites, aptly titled Blessed Assurance; one of the many beautiful hymns written by blind American hymn-writer Fanny Crosby. The story goes that ‘One evening in 1873, Fanny’s friend and composer Phoebe Palmer Knapp was visiting and played a tune on the piano, asking Fanny what it sounded like. Fanny responded, “Blessed Assurance, Jesus is mine!” Phoebe and Fanny then continued to sing the melody and write the lyrics together.’ 

Isn’t ‘it awesome how songs of worship come together so quickly and unexpectedly. The hand of God is definitely involved in the writing of each one. But enough talk, (smile) it’s time to offer up our sacrificial praises to God and heaven, this New year’s day of 2023. So, in loud, but sweet harmony, in an up tempo beat, because we’re joyful in the Lord’s strength and promises, let’s offer up a rousing, heartfelt rendition of Blessed Assurance. 

Singing: ‘Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine! Heir of salvation, purchase of God, Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood (Chorus: This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Saviour all the day long; This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Saviour all the day long.) Perfect submission, perfect delight, Visions of rapture now burst on my sight; Angels, descending, bring from above Echoes of mercy, whispers of LOVE. 

(Chorus…) Perfect submission, all is at rest, I in my Saviour am happy and blest, Watching and waiting, looking above, Filled with His goodness, lost in His LOVE. (Chorus: This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long; This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long…. Yes, This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long )’ 

Oh friends, that was a marvellous rendition! And heaven just LOVED it! (smile) And does the song ever ring out with truth, for every day we sing praises to Jesus, thankful for all the undeserved blessings He so generously and mercifully bestows on us. And all we can say is ’Thank You Jesus! Thank You for coming to earth to save us as the baby born in the manger, then dying for us on that old wooden cross of Calvary on Good Friday, taking all of our sins upon you and giving us your righteousness!’ 

Like Bruh Paul says: ‘For he (God) hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.’ (2 Cor. 5:21) And Peter reiterated it thus: ‘(Jesus) Who in his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes (wounds) ye were healed.’ (1 Pet. 2:24) 

Oh my fellow believers, that is the ultimate in selflessness! Christ died so that our sins could be forgiven! What more can we ask eh? NOTHING! What greater gift could He have bestowed eh? NONE! And all He asks of us is to be appropriately grateful and live in the righteousness that He died for us to have! 

But that’s exactly where we are falling down in our Christian walk; we’re not living in sufficient righteousness. We still have too much of the old sinful, worldly man in us. We’re still too intimidated and persuaded by the secular and unrighteous ways of the world. And understandably, since we’re only humans, it’s not easy to overlook the beautiful baubles and bangles that the world dangles in front of us, but with Christ living within us through His Holy Spirit, ostensibly to lead and guide us in righteous ways, we should be doing much better than we are. 

And any true believer who is worth his salt, on self-examination, will tell you that! The negativity that’s currently flooding our world is largely because we supposed Christians have not done the job we were given; we have not fulfilled the Great Commission enough, so that Christ’s church could have the upper hand. We have sat on our laurels way too much, enjoying the good and easy material life the world promotes, foolishly and fearfully forsaking the righteousness of Christ’s kingdom. 

Oh friends, in this year of 2023, let’s promise ourselves to do much better nuh. For our children’s sake, so much better that we will reverse some of the negativity in our world by promoting the righteousness of Christ. This year, please let our motto be truthfully the words of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;’ so that all the things we truly need will be added to us by our heavenly Father. That’s the ONLY way to turn things around! Much LOVE!

…if you can’t accept and believe Jesus’ words and promises…then whose can you accept eh… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ        

Today’s Scrip-Bit   28 December 2022 Colossians 3:2.

Colossians 3:2.       Set your affection (mind) on things above, not on things on the earth.

Can you believe it’s already Wednesday, the middle of the work week! And today is the first day some people are going out to work! It’s sure good to have Christmas fall on the weekend. But I wonder how much work is going to get done this week, with the Christmas celebrations still holding us in grip, and all the exciting and wonderful memories we have to share. Then, adding the upcoming New Year’s Eve excitement, with all the amazing plans in store, I’m sure not much work will be done in next the few days. (smile) 

You can’t do much about it, because that’s just the nature of the human animal. But as followers of Christ Jesus, we are expected to always put our best foot forward and do what we’re getting paid to do, for though our employer might not be watching us, the Lord is certainly watching and evaluating us. Remember the words of Bruh Paul to the church at Colossae. ‘And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance (salvation): for ye serve the Lord Christ.’ (Col. 3:23-24) 

And though Bruh Paul was referring there particularly to the slaves of men, it also applies to us, possibly even more, because we are servants of the Living God. So, generally speaking we should not abuse our privileges at work, but do our best all the time, not only when our employer is watching. And since the year is coming to an end, and we’re talking about always doing our best for Christ’s sake, I guess it’s apropos for us to consider a couple of things that we should endeavour to accomplish in 2023. 

Like seeking the things that are above, as Bruh Paul explains to the Colossians. ‘If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection (mind) on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.’ (Col. 3:1-3) 

And the scholars explain that situation thus. ‘As all wisdom and knowledge reside in Christ (2:3) (In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.) So, the believer’s new life is stored up in Him. This means that the Christian life belongs to the spiritual or heavenly realm. Jesus is in intimate relation with God; so are his followers. And since the Colossians (and us) now belong to the heavenly realm and are intimate with God, they (we) should seek those matters and interests pertaining to heaven and not to earth.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, as followers of Christ, it’s essential that we concentrate on heavenly things and not all the ungodly things of the earth. Stuff like ‘current heretical philosophies, legalistic practices, and vices, nor should we dwell on things that are not wrong in themselves, (houses, jobs, careers, ambitions etc.) but can be wrong should they become priorities over Christ.’ And it’s ever so easy for us to make things of this world take priority over Christ, which makes whatever it is an idol! 

It’s therefore important in this coming year to have our priorities in proper order. Which, as Christ so plainly declared: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) Now that’s been our proverbial problem. We say we believe it, but we don’t act like we do. We still go out and try to make all the things we want happen in our own way and time, and only when we are unsuccessful, do we remember to turn to God. 

That brings us back to Bruh Paul’s advice to the Colossians, where he says: ‘When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. Mortify therefore (put to death) your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection (passion), evil concupiscence (desire), and covetousness, which is idolatry.’ (Col. 2:5) That means ‘put to death all the various sins that exist, and seek to express themselves through different “members” of the human body. Inasmuch as they “are dead” to sin (vs. 3), they are to make this death to the old life a reality in daily living.’ Now that should be one of our major goals for this new year; being truly dead to sin in our daily lives. 

And Bruh Paul continues: ‘For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience: In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them. But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds.’ (Col. 3:6-9) 

And what a wonderful world we would have if just we believers would do as directed and give up the things of our old lives, before salvation, before receiving Christ as Saviour! That’s because we still do too much of that stuff; too much worldly thinking and sinful acts. We still engage in too much anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy and evil communication. If we just stopped or even lessened those five things, there would be such a great improvement in our individual lives, the church and the world at large. 

Now it’s not that difficult to do, if we concentrate on Christ’s direction: ‘A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye have LOVE one to another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:34-35) And why can’t we have LOVE to each other eh my fellow saints? If we would just do what we are supposed to, then there’d be no cause for all the negative stuff that’s currently taking place among believers. 

And Peter puts it this way: ‘And above all things have fervent charity (LOVE) among yourselves: for charity (LOVE) shall cover the multitude of sins.’ (1 Pet. 4:8) Oh my people, LOVING each other is not always easy, but with God’s help we can certainly do much better than we’re now doing. And that’s what is expected of us in this new year of 2023. Now, let’s go home declaring (yesss!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ. 

Altogether: ‘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 we like to add this l’il bit of encouragement. If we endure right down to the end with Jesus, then that future will be even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine. So, let’s hang in there right to the very end nuh! Much LOVE!

…our world can be made better…if we believers make ourselves better…  

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ      

Today’s Scrip-Bit   14 December 2022 John 1:12.

John 1:12.       But as many as received him, to them gave he power (the right) to become the sons (children of God), even to them that believe on his name:

Unfortunately friends, Wednesday didn’t open as bright and sunshiny as Tuesday, but it’s not totally overcast, the sun is still making a valiant effort to come out and overcome the dark clouds. And that’s how we believers in Jesus ought to be; making valiant efforts to shine like Jesus in the darkness of this evil world! That’s supposing we want to spend eternity with Jesus and not with the devil in sinful and fiery bondage. It seems though, that many of us are intent on doing just that, because so many of us are shamefully turning away from God, from our Creator and Provider to live the evil and ungodly life that Satan promotes. 

Why is that eh? I really don’t know, but I guess it’s because we’re angry with God since He didn’t give us what we wanted, when we wanted it, and we haven’t seen the goodness and LOVING-kindness that’s been so bandied about. But what we’ve failed to realize is that Almighty God is not our doting grandfather, who is just there to cater to our every whim and fancy. Instead, He is a just and righteous God, who cannot stand sin, and we are supposed to be obedient to His will, not Him to ours. 

We’ve got the slave and Master relationship all backward. In fact, the Lord is not bound to give us anything at all, unless we are obedient to His will. Oh yes, He does LOVE us unconditionally, but that doesn’t mean He’ll spoil us like we’ve spoilt our children by falsely thinking that we’ve got to make life easy for them and give them everything they desire. His Son Jesus didn’t have it easy down here on earth, and most of us parents didn’t have easy growing up either, but that’s what built our sense of godliness and responsibility. We had to learn to depend on God! 

And that’s where our generation of parents have fallen down and done a grave injustice to our children, so much so that they don’t have a clue about the word responsibility, and furthermore, think that they are entitled to whatever catches their fancy, and are thus rather sinful and godless. And we’ve no one to blame but ourselves. The simple fact of the matter is that too few of us are willing to do as Jesus says: ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto us.’ (Matt. 6:33) We want all these things added to us before we seek the Lord’s kingdom and His righteousness, but there’s no guarantee that we will if He gives us all we ask first. 

Anyway, we all know that we’ve screwed up as parents because our children are as far removed from God as they can be, but it’s not too late for us to try and bring them back into God’s LOVING fold. And remember yesterday we were talking about the choices available for the next life; either with Jesus in heaven, or with Satan in the lake of fire. We finished up with Daniel’s prophecy of what would happen at the end times. And I know some of you think that’s all hogwash, everybody is going to heaven because the Lord is such a LOVING and merciful God. 

But friends, please remember what John said of Jesus’ first coming. ‘He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power (the right) to become the sons (children of God), even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.’ (John 1:11-13) Yes, Jesus’ people, the Jews, rejected him, but He gave the power to anyone, Jew or Gentile to become a child of God by sincerely believing in Him. And those who don’t believe will die a sad eternal death. That’s just how the cookie crumbles. There’s not much any of us can do about it. 

And if you didn’t believe Daniel yesterday, then hopefully you’ll believe Jesus today, when He says: ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgement); but is passed from death unto life. Verily, verily, I say unto you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live. For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself. 

And hath given him authority to execute judgement also, because he is the Son of man. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth: they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation (condemnation). I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgement is just (righteous); because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.’ (John 5:24-30) 

Ah my fellow saints, all the way down through the Good Book it’s the same story, of eternal life and eternal condemnation according to our choices in this life. Jesus doesn’t lie, neither does the Good Book, so let’s boost our spirits and faith by looking at what it says will happen at the end. 

John writes in Revelation of seeing the New Jerusalem coming down from heaven. ‘And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.’ (Rev. 21:3-4) 

Oh my people, isn’t that a wonderful ending! It surely is, but we will only get to enjoy it if we accept Jesus and live the way He desires of us. Please believe that and turn to Him RIGHT NOW! And for those of us who already believe and are doing our best to live for Him, let’s go home declaring (awright!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. 

As one strong and sincere voice: ‘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 believe me my fellow saints, if we endure to the very end with Jesus, then that future will be even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine! So please let’s use that as encouragement and incentive to endure with Jesus for the long haul nuh! Much LOVE!

…living for Satan is extremely foolish…living for Jesus is the epitome of wisdom… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ      

Today’s Scrip-Bit   1 November 2022 Matthew 6:24b.

Matthew 6:24b.       Ye cannot serve God and mammon (money, riches).

Well, this new month of November has opened somewhat wet and cloudy in my area. But thankfully all the Halloween nonsense is now over, except the children stuffing their innocent faces with the candy they collected on their ‘trick or treat spree.’ Now, the next big push, the next big money grab is Christmas. And believe me, they have already begun the process for that. As soon as one money making opportunity passes, they jump right into the next one. But that’s the way of our new world, it’s all about the money! 

And I’m chuckling, though somewhat sadly, as I remember talking to a young lady recently about marriage, and she was quite adamant to remain a spinster in her parents’ home unless, and until, she found a man with money. LOVE, unfortunately ran a distant second place to the dinero. I guess, contrary to popular opinion, it’s not LOVE, but money that makes the world go round! And so many of us supposed believers are doing like the world, running down the money. Yes, we all need money to live, but we’re not supposed to let money run or colour our lives. 

That’s Jesus’ position. Remember His most august pronouncements on the subject. ‘No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and LOVE the other: or else he will hold to (be loyal to) the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (money, riches).’ (Matt. 6:24) And though that’s gospel truth, it’s also simple logic. We cannot have two masters running our lives at the same time. But nonetheless, many of us still try to do it, only to confuse and disrupt our lives even more than normal. 

And I like how the scholars explain that verse. ‘This kind of spiritual double vision causes one to believe he can serve two masters. Total loyalty to God cannot be divided between Him and loyalty to one’s material possessions. A master is a lord or an owner. That God claims total lordship over His own is obvious in this passage. Therefore, Jesus rightly proclaimed, Ye cannot serve God and mammon. The term ‘mammon’ is derived from the Aramaic term for possessions or wealth. Jesus is not condemning money or possessions in and of themselves, but the improper attitude of enslavement toward wealth.’ 

And is that ever a major problem in this money hungry and wealth conscious society! Thankfully though, Jesus also gave us the antidote for that illogical and ungodly behaviour, when He wisely advised. ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) 

Oh my people, there again, that’s simple logic and common sense! If you make the One True God of this world, the owner of it all, as well as your Creator, your number ONE priority, it’s obvious that He will look after you and provide for all of your needs. You won’t have to go chasing down the money or the material wealth, they will come chasing you down, because there’s no one as generous as your heavenly Father, and He’s just dying to bless His obedient and faithful children! 

And the thing is, when you acquire wealth and riches through Satan, rather than the Lord God Jehovah, those riches can fall through your hands like water through a sieve or strainer. But when you get your wealth through the grace of Almighty God, He guides you to make good decisions, and your wealth stays in your hands. And Jesus is not the only one who warns us in the Good Book, or rather in the Good Library, for the Bible is not a book but a library containing numerous books with a wealth of knowledge and experience on earthly living. (smile) So let’s check out a few of those warnings nuh. 

And I guess this is the warning that most of us know, which comes from Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘For the LOVE of money is the root of all (kinds of) evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many arrows.’ (1 Tim. 6:10) Yes friends, that says it plain and straightforward; it’s not the money itself, but the LOVE of money, that’s our greed, that causes so many of us to stray away from God and thus ruin our lives. Oh, we cannot covet, or strive after money as the goal of life, as so many of us do, because it almost always drives us to despair and eventual downfall. 

And in that same chapter, Bruh Paul also instructs Timothy thus. ‘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. 6:17-19)

 Ah mih bredrin, yuh see when you are wealthy in earthly goods you are also expected to share that wealth unselfishly and generously with others, laying up heavenly rewards. Note though, as the scholars explain. ‘Salvation is not purchased by the giving of money, but generosity demonstrates the reality of one’s faith. Since the believer trusts God and not money, he gives. This giving shows where his heart is and that he views his wealth in light of eternity.’ Oh friends, I only wish we could say that about the majority of the wealthy people in our current world! 

Then there’s this admonition from James: ‘Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be (wants to be) a friend of the world, is (makes himself) the enemy of God.’ (James 4:4) There’s no room for doubt in that statement. To be a true believer, faithfulness to God must be our top priority, and our actions, not just our talk, ought to show that. 

And these words of John in his first epistle very clearly state the same thing. ‘LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh (physical desires), and the lust of the eyes (personal desires), and the pride of life (self-interests), is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.’ (1 John 2:15-17) 

It could not be put any simpler or better my brethren: the things of this world pass away, but the things of God, and those who abide in His will, live forever! So, for those of us who choose to abide in God’s will and live forever, let’s go home declaring (chuh man!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know to whom we belong, lock, stock and barrel. 

As one strong and sincere voice: ‘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 my immediate neighbours, as well as with the whole wide world! Glory be!’ 

And having made that declaration (yesss!!!) let’s go out and action it by sharing the amazing LOVE and friendship of Jesus with others, so that they too can come to know and LOVE Him like We do! Much LOVE!

…contrary to popular world opinion…life is not about the money…it’s all about JESUS… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ          

Today’s Scrip-Bit   28 October 2022   1 Timothy 4:7.

1 Timothy 4:7.        But refuse (reject) profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness.

Finally, at long last, it’s Friday, the day we all look forward to, because it means the end of our work week and all the frustrations and problems making a living in this crazy, strife-filled world tend to cause. That’s why this shout is heard all around the world on a Friday. ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday, and the weekend is finally at hand. No more labour for two whole big days. Wow!’ 

And we all note the sarcasm in the last sentence. What an entitled and ungrateful society we’ve become, lacking work ethic and responsibility. We want to live a good life, with all the amenities available but don’t want work or do what’s necessary to provide them. It’s like the saying goes; we want what others have but don’t want to do what they did to get it. And the sad part is that Jesus told us so clearly that running down the things of the world is counter-productive, because the same basic things are available through belief in Him and His heavenly Father, plus with them, you’ll also gain life eternal, while with Satan it’s eternal death. 

What don’t we understand about: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) If you trust and rely on God, He will provide you with all the basic necessities of life, just like He does for the birds, the bees, the flowers and all His other creations. You are His most wonderful and adored creation, so if He provides all the lesser creations need to survive and thrive, why will He refuse to do the same for his most prized creation eh? No reason whatsoever! 

But we foolishly allow the devil to tempt us into running down the things of the world, because they seem glamorous and glitter like gold, allowing him to sow doubt in our minds about the goodness and grace of God. But as a true believer, that is one thing you should never doubt because if you’ve spent any time at all under His umbrella, you’ll have certainly seen several instances of His grace and mercy. However, unfortunately, it’s only with experience, length of time you spend with someone, that you truly get to know them. 

And that’s how it is also with our great and generous God; the more time you spend with Him, the better you get to know Him, and thus come to appreciate all his many marvellous attributes. Then you will see the lack of wisdom involved in following the deceitful, and treacherous devil, who only comes to steal and destroy, while Jesus came to save us, to give us life in abundance, so much so that it will overflow. (John 10:10) 

That’s why Bruh Paul in his first letter to Timothy, his young preacher associate, so seriously warned him against the things of the world. ‘But refuse (reject) profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness. For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and that which is to come.’ (1 Tim. 4:7-8) 

And that certainly is good advice! For as the scholars tell us: ‘We may read the verse (7), “But avoid profane and fabricated myths, and exercise yourself to be godly.” These false doctrines called “myths” are described as “profane” because they promote ungodliness, and “fabricated” because they – like modern day soap operas – are silly and flighty in character. Not only must Timothy avoid false teaching, he must spare himself no pain and effort to be pious. Godliness does not come automatically. To attain holiness he must be diligent in prayer, Bible study, obedience, fellowshipping with other believers, and Christian service.’ 

And my fellow believers nothing has changed in that department. We still need to be diligent in our obedience, duty, fellowshipping, prayer, and Bible study time, for that’s the only way we can ever truly know the heart, desires and will of our majestic and LOVING God. And I’m sure the scholars’ belittling of soap operas won’t sit well with some of you soap opera diehards, but it’s the truth. They don’t promote anything but resentment, deceit and a flighty, worldly lifestyle. 

That brings us to the scholars comment on verse 8 above. They say: ‘The verse may be paraphrased, “For physical exercise is of limited value, but godliness the result of spiritual exercise, has unlimited values, since it brings blessings for both now and eternity.’ Oh my people, what a way our world would be wonderfully improved if some of us would spend just a li’l less time on bodily exercise and use that saved time instead in spiritual improvement. 

The thiefing gyms and exercise palaces are full to overflowing every day, meanwhile the churches sit empty. What does that say about us eh? Simply that we regard and appreciate our frail, fragile earthly bodies more than we do our omnipotent Creator. And that obviously doesn’t bode well for our society in the long term, because without godly vision and practices, a society flounders and eventually fails. And unfortunately, we’re currently seeing and experiencing that tell-tale floundering in our mish-mash, ungodly world. 

However, it’s not too late to make a change, a change for the better, but it all begins with sincere prayer. So, if you’re sincere about trying to improve the world for our descendants, then please join me in offering up our Friday Chant to a waiting heaven. As one voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the several viruses and our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the viruses and the simmering unrest in our land. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic, the discontent and dissatisfaction in our land that’s threatening to boil over, as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, wake up and smell it sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

Now, my fellow believers, let’s get busy with all the things we need to do if we’re going to improve our world, as soon as possible. Much LOVE!

…worldly pleasures last but for a moment…but godliness gives grace for eternity… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ      

Today’s Scrip-Bit   21 October 2022 Matthew 6:21.

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

Ah, at last some bright sunshine today and not the cloudy times we’ve had the last few days. But it’s still somewhat chilly, although the temperatures for today and the next week are going to soar into the mid-teens, and possibly above, after being below ten for the last little while. I don’t know if that’s because of our latest phenomenon called climate change, or it’s what used to be called ‘Indian summer,’ but which is now a politically incorrect term. 

However, you won’t hear me complain anytime the temperature is in the mid-teens, I will gladly declare…ah Lord eh, I even spelled the simple form of the word wrong. What’s the problem with me and it eh? Anyhow, to prevent further provocation, let’s proclaim (smile) ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we will rejoice and be glad in it!’ (Ps, 118:24) And since it’s Friday, let’s also proclaim: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and the weekend is finally here!’ 

So we have those two interesting proclamations, but we need to balance them out properly, making sure that the Lord’s will comes first and not allow our pleasure mode to ruin our witness, because we can be real party animals when we’re ready, and if we’re not careful, put God completely out of our minds. And that’s definitely not a good position in which to find oneself. Remember Jesus’ admonition in His Sermon on the Mount. ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33). 

Yes friends, if we make Almighty God our Number One priority, everything else will fall into proper place in our lives. We’ll have all that we need to live comfortably as well as time to party – in moderation that is. So why do we still insist on running down the things of this world and spend our lives unwisely and anxiously accumulating them? 

Jesus also had something important to say on that. ‘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 (ruin), 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 who says Jesus didn’t dispense divine wisdom for practical living here on earth eh? Just look at the ridiculous amount of protection we need nowadays to protect our earthly stuff, and we not even talking about real expensive stuff, just our everyday belongings. And yet still thieves break through and steal. What’s the point then of accumulating all that earthly wealth eh? Remember Granny said that anything a man builds, another man can also invade, or break into. 

So there’s good wisdom in Jesus’ teaching to store our treasures in heaven and not here on earth. And that last part about where your treasure is, there will your heart be, it’s gospel truth my people. Another reason to store our treasures in heaven, for when we do that, our heart will be with God up there, focusing on Him and His righteousness, not with evil mankind down here. 

And the scholars offer these explanations on 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 is illustrated elsewhere in the teaching of Jesus.’ 

That means we’re not laying up stuff in heaven, as we lay it up down here on earth. Our stuff up there are rewards for the righteousness we exhibit down here, not things like silver and gold. That’s why they don’t rust, or thieves can’t steal them. Or as Peter so wisely puts it. ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively (living) hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you. Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.’ (1 Pet. 1:3-5) 

Ah mih people, whatever is stored up for us in heaven through the power of God on the basis of Jesus’s work, especially salvation, is incorruptible and undefiled and cannot fade away. Now isn’t that good news? It certainly is, and it ought to encourage us to store up our treasures in heaven rather than down here on earth, where even the most expensive clothes are eventually consumed by moths and age, and the most precious things like silver and gold fade away, lose their lustre, and thieves break into even the most impregnable bank vaults and steal. 

So what’s the point of accumulating much earthly treasure eh? None whatsoever, because the more you have, the more headaches you experience, just to keep it safe. Anyway, enough sermonizing for today. (smile) Let’s go to the Lord in prayer, through our Friday Chant and ask for His divine help in our strife-filled world. 

Altogether now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the several viruses and our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the viruses and the simmering unrest in our land. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the threatening to boil over discontent and dissatisfaction in our land as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And if we truly desire to receive a positive reaction from heaven, then we need to become the faithful believers we just mentioned, and set the good example needed for others to come to Jesus. Much LOVE!

…true wisdom…to balance your treasure chest according to your life span…so store more treasures in heaven than on earth…since heavenly life is forever

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ           

Today’s Scrip-Bit   1 October 2022 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.        Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Ah friends, the tiredness and laziness are certainly permeating the ole fella’s body and spirit this lazy, somewhat cloudy Saturday morning, the first day of October 2022. Now I like that sentence because it tells us so many things all in one go. (smile) But I think this lazy Saturday thing is getting into me, becoming a habit, and I don’t like it. I was up earlier on, did a couple of things, then went back to bed, claiming I was still sleepy. But the truth is, an hour or so later, I don’t know if I’m feeling any better than I did the first time I got up. 

Nonetheless, there’s God’s work to be done, which is one of the reasons I’m beginning to dislike the lazy Saturday idea, because rain or shine, sleet or snow, in sickness or health, I still have to do it. (smile) And God’s work on Saturdays entails looking at the quotes our friend Anselm sent us the past week and make something Christian-like of them, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And that’s not always easy, but with God’s awesome help, I always manage to turn out something respectable. ‘Thank You Lord!’ 

And we’ll begin with this interesting quote, which says: ‘If you make your internal life a priority, then everything else you need on the outside will be given to you and it will be extremely clear what the next step is.’ Now, there’s a lot of truth in that, provided Jesus Christ is your Lord and Saviour and you make Him, or your spiritual life, your priority, for He sincerely and faithfully promised: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) That’s food, clothing, and all the other necessities of life. But we first have to believe in Him, and then put Him first in all that we do. 

But I question the last part of the quote, for everything will definitely not be made extremely clear. Yes, somethings will be made clear, but a lot of it we will be expected to walk by faith and trust in Christ Jesus. For what’s the purpose of a God eh, if He tells us everything clearly and leaves nothing to our imagination or faith eh? None whatsoever! 

And that segues very nicely into this next quote. ‘You don’t always need a plan. Sometimes you just need to breathe, trust, let go and see what happens.’ And that’s the gospel truth! But you can only do that when your faith and trust in Jesus is strong, and you’ve already had some experience with Him. If He is your guide and protector, then you have to let go sometimes and just let Him lead and guide you. We call him the Good Shepherd, and that’s what shepherds do; lead and guide their flock safely and compassionately. And Jesus is the epitome, the master example of shepherds and shepherding. (smile) 

But in any case, as Cousin Sol so wisely tells us in Proverbs: ‘A man’s heart deviseth (plans) his way: but the Lord directeth his steps.’ (Prov. 16:9) Yes my brethren, our God is sovereign over our scheming and planning, that’s why so many of our bright schemes and plans go astray. (smile) If they are not in His will, then ofttimes He won’t allow them to happen. And even if they are in His will, sometimes it’s just not the right time, so they won’t happen either. That means it’s very important to recognize God’s sovereignty and will over our lives, otherwise His yays and nays will eventually drive us crazy, and possibly turn us away from Him, which is the worst thing we can ever do. 

Then there’s this quote: ‘No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world.’ Now there should be absolutely no doubt to that, since it’s been words and ideas that have been changing the world since the beginning of time. They are put in place before any action happens. And we have a great example in the fall of man. Satan spoke to Eve with words, planting ideas in her mind, re eating from the tree of Good and Evil. 

‘And the serpent said unto the woman (Eve), Ye shall not surely die. For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods (God), knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes (a desirable thing), and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her, and he did eat. And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked, and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons (girding coverings)’ (Gen. 3:4-7) 

And there we have it; the first words and ideas that changed the world, that brought sin and disobedience into the life of mankind! And I like how the scholars describe verse six, in terms of 1 John 2:16. ‘Good for food, appeals to appetite, or ‘lust of the flesh.’ ‘Pleasant to the eyes,’ turns us to the law against coveting in Ex. 20, showing as ‘lust of the eyes.’ And ‘to be desired to make one wise,’ according to the use of the verb ‘desired’ in Deut. 5 for coveting, appeals to ‘the pride of life.’ So that just set us on that path of lust and sinful desires. 

But there’s also another great example where words and actions wrought a substantive change to that first foolish and disobedient action of our forefathers. That’s the coming of Jesus Christ, the Son of God to sacrifice His sinless life so that man could be redeemed, be forgiven of his disgusting sins and disobedience and be once again reconciled to the Father. And how did Jesus put forward His plan to the people, with words and ideas, just like Satan did. And you’ll notice the amazing change in people when those words and ideas sank in. 

Then, when He followed them up with appropriate action…Wow! There was such an uprising of change and clamour like the world’s never seen before, and it’s been taking place down through the ages, even to this day! And in between, we’ve had all sorts of words and ideas that have changed our world, but none as big and lasting as those two. 

And this next quote also follows on nicely to the last. ‘What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you.’ More gospel truth my people. What has happened to you, and what will happen to you in the future, depends to a great extent on what lies inside of you. If you have the evil spirit of Satan lurking and working within you, then most likely you will be bound for evil doings and eventual damnation and hellfire. However, if you have the Spirit of Jesus, the Holy Ghost, dwelling within you, as all believers have, and you’re listening to His lead and guidance, then you will be able to accomplish marvellous things in this world. 

Why? Because the Spirit of Jesus dwelling within believers bears wonderful fruit. Fruit like, LOVE, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, kindness, faithfulness and self-control! Now how can those marvelous things dwelling and growing within you not produce most excellent stuff eh? That brings us to this last quote, another interesting one. ‘Do not allow people to dim your shine because they are blinded. Tell them to put some sunglasses on.’ Now that’s putting it nicely! 

Yes, friends, when that fruit of the Spirit begins producing good stuff in us and in our actions, then others will become jealous, disgruntled, or some other negative reaction, because they don’t want to see us shine, especially if we’re shining for Jesus. But as the quote advises, tell them to get a grip, to put on some sunglass if your light is too bright for them, because that’s exactly what Jesus wants to see from His followers. Like He said: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt: 5:16) 

And with that exhortation ringing in our ears, my fellow saints, let’s get out there and SHINE! SHINE for Jesus! SHINE like we’ve never shone before! Our world desperately needs us to shine in these very depressing and destructive times! And Jesus is counting on us to do just that! Much LOVE!

…the darkness of the world…can only be overcome by…the blazing light of Christian LOVE… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8     

Today’s Scrip-Bit   9 September 2022 Psalm 105:4.

Psalm 105:4.       Seek ye the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore.

Oh friends, it’s Friday, and many of us around the world have already shouted that seminal phrase: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!’ But unfortunately, many of us around the world are also mourning the passing yesterday of Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II, in her 97th year, having reigned for almost 71 consistent years on the throne of Great Britain, after being unexpectedly thrown into the spotlight by the abdication of her uncle and the death of her father. 

Just the numbers alone say a lot, and regardless of how you felt about the Queen herself, her family or the monarchy, you have to admit that we’ve lost one of the very few strong and steadfast leaders in our crazy world. Much of her power has been eroded over the years, but her diplomacy was legendary, and she was undoubtedly the one steady spoke in the wheel that kept the United Kingdom and many parts of the universe from falling apart or going on dangerous strategic runs. 

Let us pray that her son, King Charles III will keep that steadfastness and diplomacy of his mother going, because we desperately need a lot of that in our leaders, instead of the despotic, autocratic and dictatorial attitudes that are currently prevalent. Our sincere condolences to the Royal Family. We forget that they are people just like us, with the same human frailties and feelings. May the Lord receive you into His glory Queen Elizabeth the second! 

Ah mih people, with strife and hatred prevalent in more places around the world than peace and LOVE, it’s sad and frustrating to lose one of the few people who sincerely tried to keep matters on an even keel. But that’s life, we all have to go home to our Maker one day, and the world goes on in whatever fashion without us. And much to our chagrin, very few leaders in this day and age can be said to have made a positive difference in the lives of their people, and in the world in general. 

It’s interesting to note that the U.K now has a new King, or titular leader, and also a new Prime Minister, or active leader, a female at that. Hopefully that’s a sign for better days to come. In the meanwhile though, all of us plebs, (smile) must continue to do as the psalmist advises in Psalm 105. ‘Seek ye the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore. Remember his marvellous works that he hath done; his wonders, and the judgements of his mouth.’ (Ps. 105:4-5) 

Yes friends, seeking God’s face and remembering all that He’s done in our lives is extremely important, especially in times of serious change like our world is currently experiencing. That’s because the Lord God Almighty is the One who has brought us this far, and who will determine our future by our righteousness. 

Remember the promise of God the prophet Jeremiah made to the people of Israel, when they were in captivity in Babylon? ‘For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end (a future and a hope). Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto (listen to) you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.’ (Jer. 29:11-13) 

Oh my brethren, that is exactly what the Lord is saying to us today too. We desperately need to come to Him with full surrender and trust, seek Him with all our hearts, if we want our world to be improved. There are no ifs, ands, and buts about that! Only if we sincerely seek the face of the Lord God Jehovah, turn away from all the evil idols we’re currently worshipping, give up all the ungodly things of the world that are still so much a part of our lives, will we ever find the One, True, Living God, He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Jesus also made that very clear when He commanded us: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 16:33) All of us know that foundational scripture, yet we refuse to practice it. Instead, we continue running down the things of the world like wealth and power, on our own. That’s the total opposite of what Jesus taught and what the heavenly Father expects. And please don’t think that because you are a Christian you cannot possess a lot of the earth’s wealth and power, because there are a lot of rich and powerful believers in the world, but you just have to do it according to the Lord’s will and timing. 

And it is of the utmost importance that we read, know, inwardly digest and practice these words of scripture from the first epistle of John. ‘LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh (physical desires), and the lust of the eyes (personal desires), and the pride of life (self-interests), is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.’ (1 John 2:15-17) 

Ah my fellow saints, when are we going to stop paying lip service to our God and His will eh? When are we going to begin taking His edicts and promises very seriously eh, and realize that a lot of our current suffering rests on our own sinful and ungodly desires and behaviour? Until we wake up and be transformed in our minds and actions, our world will continue to go down the drain in spectacular fashion. So, having said all of that that, the first thing on our agenda of change, is prayer. So, in confident but humble voice, let’s go to the throne of God, through our Friday Chant and ask for His benevolent help. 

Altogether now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that viruses and our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the viruses and the unrest in our streets. 

So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. 

And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And if we sincerely want divine help, then we must keep our promises, and have right motives in our hearts. Much LOVE!

…true leaders lead by example…as Jesus did…not by deceit or force…as Satan does… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8​       

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