Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 April 2017 Matthew 26:38.

Matthew 26:38.   Then said he (Jesus) unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye (wait) here, and watch with me.

‘Oh what a beautiful morning! Oh what a beautiful day! Oh what a beautiful morning! Everything’s going my way!’ (smile) Well not exactly everything on this Holy Thursday morn, but sufficient stuff to keep me rather grateful. Glory to God! 

Some of you ole fogies might remember that song from way back when, but it’s still very applicable in these trying times, for everyday that we open our eyes and greet the world, it’s a beautiful day and things are going our way! 

And today I want to especially give thanks and praise to our ever-faithful heavenly Father for getting me out of the quandary that I was in yesterday; meaning having my friend Jackie’s funeral and an important doctor’s appointment the same time to day. 

But in His wonderful mysterious workings I called the doctor’s office and was able to get my appointment time pushed back to later. Thank You Lord! 

I would have been very disappointed if I couldn’t go to Jackie’s memorial service, because over the last year or so we had gotten fairly close, and would take interest in each other’s medical affairs, boosting each other to hang in and hope for the best. 

Right now she indeed has the best, while I am still here doing my pilgrim’s thing, (smile) but with her memory forever etched on my heart. 

And yuh know what friends, our God is so good and wise and wonderful, that the very night before Jackie died, I was watching a programme ‘At the Cross’; a call in religious show for prayer and godly help, and the topic of the night just happened to be, ‘Are you grieving a loss?’ 

And that loss could be anything at all, a house, a dear one, a job, finances, etc. Once the loss touched you severely, there was room for grief. And the host of that night’s programme identified two types of grieving; one he called demonic grief and the other cleansing grief. 

The demonic one was obviously the type of grief that just throws you down and keeps you down for a long time, where you can’t function at all, can’t go on with your life, and there is a lot of bitterness and anger and negative emotions in your soul. 

Meanwhile the cleansing grief is the grief that helps you get over your loss. It may take a long while, but in the meantime you will be able to function, because you have given your grief and sorrow to Christ and He has kept His promise of Matthew 11:29: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.’ 

Yeh friends, that’s the only way that makes sense; take it all to Jesus, admit that you can’t handle it and ask for his saving grace and LOVING-kindness. Then and only then will you be able to handle your grief in a wholesome manner. 

And that is one testimony that I can most definitely attest to; a moment in time I’ll never forget. I’m talking about when my mother unexpectedly went to be with the Lord some years ago while I was in California, an unexpected aura of peace just floated over me. 

I was most surprised by it, and though deep down I was devastated by the loss, I was able to hold up quite well. Some people were skeptical bout my calm attitude, but I never took offense, because I knew that the Spirit of the Lord had imbued me with the peace to set things in order. 

And yuh know what friends? Even Jesus had grieving and sorrowful moments, the main one being His rough moments in the Garden of Gethsemane on the Holy Thursday night before he was crucified. 

Listen to our Bit. ‘Then said he (Jesus) unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye (wait) here, and watch with me.’ 

Yes friends, Jesus agonized over stuff too, that’s why He can understand our human frailties and emotions. Thus the Good Book tells us: ‘And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.’ (Matt.26:39) 

Then He went back to the disciples and found them sleeping, and admonished Peter, ‘What could ye not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.’ (Matt.26:40-41) 

Extremely good advice for us to take to heart my brethren! Then Jesus went away and prayed a second time, ‘Saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except (unless) I drink it, thy will be done. And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy. And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words.’ (Matt.26:42-44) 

Yes my people, three times Jesus prayed for the cup to pass away. Meanwhile Luke tells us that during His first prayer session: ‘And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.’ (Luke 22:43-44) 

And the scholars explain thus: 22:43-44. Only Luke notes this. Jesus is borne up in His hour of greatest need, when He must intercede not only for Himself but for His followers, who are about to leave Him in the lurch. 

Agony appears only here in the New Testament; it points to the intensity of Jesus’ struggle. Surely Jesus wrestles not so much with death itself, but with His own destiny to be made the sin-bearer for all mankind for all the ages. The punishment that had to be borne for our sins brings Jesus to His knees in anguish.’  

Now hopefully friends, we’ll truly appreciate the great weight, the severe burden that Jesus had to bear on our behalf, and in future give Him much more thanks and praise. So let’s go home declaring our Thursday Blessings, which, despite our sinfulness, the Lord still doles out so generously to us. 

‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! 

I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! 

I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Now remember a blessing is not a blessing until it’s declared over someone, so let’s go out now and declare blessings over plenty some ones. Much LOVE!

…grief and sorrow are natural human emotions…but through Jesus …we can bear them successfully…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 February 2017 Matthew 26:39.

Matthew 26:39.   And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.

Welcome, welcome, my fellow believers to another glorious day in the annals of History! There are brand new strands of grace, mercies and lots of other good things to enjoy, courtesy of our wonderful God Jehovah! 

So let’s gratefully acknowledge and accept them like the psalmist did nuh, by declaring: ‘This is the day which the Lord hath made, we WILL rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24) 

And that’s the way it should be my people, because that’s how our magnanimous and omnipotent God planned it. Any believer that does not rejoice and be glad in God’s day is not worth his salt, or the name of believer. 

Now here is a li’l something from my ‘P.S. I LOVE YOU’ Poster to titillate our senses. (smile) It says: ‘When fate shuts a door, come in through the window.’  The problem with that though, is suppose God shuts the door, then going in through the window might cause serious problems. 

But generally speaking, I believe they mean don’t give up, to keep on trying, for one never knows when your number will play, it’s always the darkest before the dawn, and that sort of thing. 

And we’ll get to our Bit right away. ‘And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.’ 

Yes friends, Jesus’ soul was in agony, just like ours would be if we knew the horrific kind of death that was waiting for us in another few hours. It’s sad, that after praying our Bit, Jesus came back to His disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter: ‘What could ye not watch with me one hour? 

Watch and pray that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except (unless) I drink it, thy will be done. 

And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy. And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words.’ (Matt.26:40-44) 

So friends, we can see that Jesus prayed three times that the cup of death, that His horrific crucifixion could be nixed, although deep down He knew it could not be set aside, because that was the Father’s will. Nonetheless, he still experienced agonizing moments. 

The gospel of Luke reports it thus: ‘And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.’ (Luke 22:43-44) 

Yes precious people, Jesus shook it real rough that night in the Garden of Gethsemane, so much so that the Lord sent an angel to strengthen Him. 

The scholars explain those two verses thus: ’22:43-44. Only Luke notes this. Jesus is borne up in His hour of greatest need, when He must intercede not only for Himself but for His followers, who are about to leave Him in the lurch. 

Agony appears only here in the New Testament; it points to the intensity of Jesus’ struggle. Surely Jesus wrestles, not so much with death itself, but with His own destiny to be made the sin-bearer for all mankind for all the ages. The punishment that had to be borne for our sins brings Jesus to His knees in anguish.’ 

So yuh see mih people, the anguish and agony Jesus bore for us, so that we could be set free from the slavish hold that sin had on us. Now how can we not be eternally grateful to Him eh? 

I really don’t know nuh, but too many people write Him off as a fake, as a fraud, and foolishly look to the evil Lucifer for pleasure. However they don’t realize that the pleasures of this world only last for a short time, then comes the judgement. 

And we’ll close with one more instance of how Jesus shows the great importance of doing the Father’s will. This came on an occasion where He was teaching, surrounded by a crowd of people, when His brothers and mother came to talk to Him. 

‘And the multitude sat about him, and they said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek (are outside seeking) for thee. And He looked round about at them which sat (in a circle) about him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.’ (Mark 3:32-35) 

Now that might sound a bit harsh to some, but to Jesus, the Father’s will overruled everything else, regardless of who was involved. May we also feel the same way, as we go home declaring our Wednesday Wail with mucho passion and heartfelt truth. 

‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Oh friends, that’s the ultimate in life! Let’s not allow it to slip away from us, for worthless earthly pleasures. Much LOVE!

…the pleasures of earth are short-lived…but those of heaven are eternal…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 April 2015 Matthew 27:35

Matthew 27:35. And they crucified him, and parted (divided) his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted (divided) my garments among them, and upon my vesture (clothing) did they cast lots.

Oh Friends, it’s Friday! And one we call Good Friday to boot. How can that be though, when such a dastardly deed, such a great injustice, a crucifixion, was perpetrated on a holy and sinless man two thousand years ago? How can it be that we call such a day good eh, especially when it was no ordinary crucifixion, but a horrific and cruel one, filled with all sorts of unimaginable brutality and inhumanity?
 
That’s the epitome of our saying that man’s inhumanity to man makes countless thousands suffer and mourn!  But I guess we call it good because it was the beginning, the initializing of some thing good. Without that sacrifice on Good Friday, there would have been no resurrection on Easter Sunday, no victory over hell, death and the grave.
 
And it’s also good in the sense that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ gave His life so that we could be free from the bondage of sin once and for all. We have to look at it that way Friends, otherwise it was just a brutal injustice.
 
And believe you me, Jesus paid a heavy, heavy price for our disgusting sins, for as we said above, it was no ordinary crucifixion, but a most cruel and heartless one, fuelled by fear and greed and the lust for power, the same things that are still controlling our world today.
 
Oh my people, please take a moment and consider the inhumanity that Jesus suffered before He even reached Calvary; the scourging, the spitting, the ridicule, the mocking, the slapping, the crown of thorns, the tearing of His flesh by the cruel whips with all sorts of sharp things attached meant exactly for that purpose.
 
In this modern day and age, although we’re still cruel, I don’t think we can truly capture the thoroughly disfigured and tattered picture of Jesus when He came out of Pilate’s place, then was given His cross to carry, though He could barely walk and His wounds were by then terminal. It was only a matter of time.
 
It’s a good thing that somebody had the bright idea to get Simon the Cyrene to help Him bear the cross, otherwise I doubt He would have made it to Golgotha that evil place of the skull, which we Christians now term Calvary, a much nicer name. Then being made to lie outstretched on two planks of wood and nailed to them with huge metal nails, in such a way that death would be painful and prolonged. Steups!
 
Can you imagine that gruesome scene Friends, of Jesus being put to lie down on the cross and nailed to it, then have it raised upright and what little lifeblood He had left, being set to drain slowly and painfully out of Him? And to make matters worse, they crucified Him between two common criminals. Chuh!
 
Ah mih people, can you look through your eyes of faith and see Jesus, all torn and tattered, just languishing up there on that cross in the hot noonday sun? Believe me Friends, it was definitely no little price that Jesus paid for the banishment of our sins nuh! That’s what you call real ‘sufferation.’ The Father really put it to Him.
 
In my humble opinion it did not have to be so cruel, but I guess it just goes to show how disgusting and diabolical sin is and was, and that the only way to truly get rid of it was by a serious sacrificial death of a sinless person. And unfortunately Jesus was the ONLY ONE who fit that description.
 
It also shows how serious the Father is and was about His dislike for sin, if He could allow such terrible atrocities to be performed on His only Son. If you think it hurts us, just imagine the heartache He must have felt nuh, seeing His Son go through so much agony, and knowing that He could stop it with a simple word, but also knowing that if He did, sin would then forever run rampant throughout His universe, with no end in sight, and the evil Lucifer would have won the war.
 
Being a holy and just God, He just could not allow that, so like we say, He just had to grin and bear it. And yet we still doubt His wonderful and unconditional LOVE for us!
 
What hurts too Friends, is that after that most expensive price Jesus paid for our forgiveness, for our reconciliation and atonement, for our salvation and eternal life, so many of us simply ignore Him, or don’t take him as seriously as we should.
 
That’s not only unfortunate my brethren, but rather foolish, for if we don’t embrace Jesus and all that He stands for then we’ll still end up in the pool of fire come the judgement day with the wicked Beelzebub and all his other minions, and His sacrifice would have been worthless.
 
Oh Friends, the Father sent His son to pay the price for our abominable sins because He did not want to lose even one of His most wonderful creations, mankind, to Lucifer. So why aren’t we being wise and truly accepting Jesus as our Lord and Saviour eh? That’s the multi-million dollar question?
 
Instead, we’re sadly moving away from Him in droves, embracing the worthless and sinful stuff of the world, foisted on us by the prince of darkness and his evil lackeys. That’s only going to bring us more sin and suffering, and it’s oh so foolish, when Jesus has already paid the price for us to be free from the bondage and torment of sin.
 
But yuh know what my brethren, Jesus was such a mighty and majestic man, that throughout it all He didn’t complain. He knew that that was the reason for which He was made man, and though He pleaded some with the Father to change the plans, deep down He knew that it was not going to happen, so again, like we all have to do at times, He just grinned and bore it.
 
He withstood the mockery and jeers and otherwise that were hurled at him while He hung there limp and helpless on the cross. The only sad words that reached His lips on the cross were as the Good Book says: ‘And about the ninth hour (noon) Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? That is to say, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?’ (Matt.27:46)
 
Yes Friends, in that moment, as the scholars explain; ‘Here we have the high cost to Christ of His atonement for our sins, who was accursed of God as our sin-bearer, (cf.2 Cor.5:21; Gal.3:13) and suffered the agony of spiritual death for us.’ 
 
Ah mih breddren, as our Bit so sadly says too: ‘And they crucified him, and parted (divided) his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted (divided) my garments among them, and upon my vesture (clothing) did they cast lots.’ That prophecy comes from Psalm 22:18, words of Bruh David.
 
But you know what Friends, Jesus is so beautiful, that even on the cross He still reached out to us. He pleaded with the Lord; ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.’ (Luke 23:34) Then to one of the criminals who were crucified with Him and who embraced His sanctity as they hung there together, He sincerely promised: ‘Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise.’ (Luke 23:43)
 
And to show how much He cared for His mother, the Good Book tells us: ‘When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by whom he LOVED (John), he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.’ (John 19:26-27)
 
What’s left to be said eh, my people? Only this: ‘And when Jesus had cried with aloud voice, he said, ‘Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost (breathed his last).’ (Luke 23:46)
 
Oh Friends, on this solemn Friday which we call good, and on which we didn’t even shout for joy, ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday!’ since most people are already off work, for it’s a public holiday in most places, let’s Chant our Friday Chant nonetheless as we spend the day in worship and ponder what the day means to us as a congregation, as well as individuals.
 
Let’s chant: ‘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.’
 
Oh my people, it’s long and somewhat involved. (smile) But that’s what I was guided to write. I just hope it brings home to us the real hefty price that Jesus paid for our sins to be forgiven, and brings us ever closer to Him. Much LOVE!
 
…to all serious believers…today…let’s take up our crosses and follow Jesus…for that’s what he desires of us…

 

 

 

 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 March 2013 Luke 22:42

Luke 22:42.     Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me; nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.
 
Oh Friends, ignorance is something else yes! As the old people said, when you don’t hear, you feel. And I’m definitely feeling this morning with an aching back. I went to bed last night at a decent hour, but got side swiped when I decided to read a few pages of a novel I had on the go. Needless to say the novel was interesting and I lay in bed reading until I finished it at one thirty this morning. Hn! Now the problem is not that I didn’t get to sleep until late, but that I lay in bed all that time while reading, then continued by going right to sleep afterwards. And it’s not like I don’t know that I can’t do the reading in bed thing for any length of time, then go straight to sleep without my back aching when I get up. Where some people can lie in bed all day and have no problems, after five or six hours in bed, my back starts to act up. But such is the stubbornness and rebelliousness of man, that we insist on doing what we shouldn’t do, although we know the negative consequences that will arise from those negative actions. And my people, that’s the lesson our God wants to put before us this Holy Thursday morning; think before you act, consider the consequences before you put your hand, foot or mouth in the proverbial whatever it is. (smile) In fact the Lord’s been trying to teach us that since Adam was a little boy and ate the forbidden apple, when he knew full well he shouldn’t. But do we listen? Obviously not! For even in our childhood there’s that spirit of rebellion which causes us to go against the wishes of our parents and teachers. The same goes for when we achieve adulthood, for just look at our society today. Look at the numerous things we do, even though we know that they are wrong and the consequences can and/or will be painful, even disastrous. Oh my brethren, what is it in mankind that makes him think he can constantly disobey his Creator and not pay the price for that disobedience eh? I certainly don’t know nuh friends. But today we have a most excellent example of obedience in Jesus, who knowing the fate that awaited Him the next day on Calvary’s cross, and who had ample reason and opportunity to rebel, fortunately did not do it, else crapaud would certainly have smoked we pipe. And it’s not like He didn’t feel anxious and somewhat fearful, for who in human flesh wouldn’t be appalled at the thought of being cruelly and criminally nailed to a wooden cross and left to perish in the hot sun. Remember that though Jesus was God, here on earth He had all the human weakness and frailties except sin. But instead of out and out rebelling, what did He do? After the Last Supper, where He blessed His disciples with the body and blood of His spiritual self, He went to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray, to spend some quiet, if agonizing time with His heavenly Father. And though He anguished over the upcoming events, even praying that the Father might excuse Him from the task at hand, He knew that that wasn’t possible, for it was that very event, crucifixion, sinless sacrifice, for which He had come to earth. Our Bit details His predicament and resolve in a few simple words. ‘Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me; nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.’ Yes my brethren, for us followers of Christ, it’s never really about our will, but our heavenly Father’s. Jesus even enshrined that in the example He gave us of prayer. ‘Thy kingdom come, thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.’ (Matt.6:10) That means our prayer is to be in conformity with God’s will, not the other way around. And if we think that Jesus didn’t endure real anxiety in the garden that fateful Holy Thursday night, just listen to what the Good Book says after He stated our Bit. ‘And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven strengthening him. And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.’ (Luke 22:43-44) Oh my people, we can’t sweat to such an extent, without physical labour, unless we’re very anxious about something. The scholars claim: ‘Surely Jesus wrestles, not so much with death itself, but with His own destiny to be made the sin-bearer for all mankind for all the ages. The punishment that had to be borne for our sins brings Jesus to His knees in anguish.’ And why wouldn’t it eh, especially for a bunch of rebellious ingrates! And to buttress the fact that Jesus totally saw His role as doing God’s will, let’s look at several scriptures where He emphasizes it. First though, listen to Isaiah, who foresaw Jesus’ great dilemma. ‘The Lord God hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. I gave my back to the smiters (those who struck me), and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair (beard). I hid not my face from shame and spitting. For the Lord God will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded (disgraced): therefore have I set my face like flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.’ (Is.50:5-7) And that’s exactly what Jesus did! Now hear Him enshrine the Father’s will. It all comes from John’s gospel. The first example is after He’s spoken to the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well and His disciples not knowing that fact, offer Him food, and He answers them thus: ‘Jesus saith unto them, My meat (food) is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.’ (John 4:34) Then, in talking about the Son’s relationship to the Father, He humbly declares: ‘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 5:30) And when saying that He’s the bread of life, Jesus offers these words as His earthly purpose. ‘For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.’ (John 6:38) And finally, in talking about being the light of the world, Jesus concludes: ‘And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.’ (John 8:29) Oh Friends, fellow believers and followers of Jesus Christ, on this Holy Thursday, when we commemorate the selfless sacrifice that Jesus suffered for us two thousand years ago, please, I sincerely plead with us, to take serious stock of ourselves, note any rebellious behaviour we have towards our heavenly father, and consequently Jesus, then purposely try to correct that ungodly behaviour with sincere repentance and prayer, so that in these very trying, confused and troubled times, we will measure up much better than ever to the character of Jesus, where He always considered the Father’s will before committing any action. I pray that as of this day, we’ll all come up a little higher, losing most of our rebelliousness, coming ever closer to the perfection that’s Jesus. In Jesus’ Holy Name, I pray. Amen. Much LOVE my people!…free will is nice to have…but it means being very disciplined…or facing negative consequences…  P.S. Oh Friends, our God is so wonderful that I came down here this morning with nothing to write about, feeling lousy, and consequently figuring that the Bit would be pretty late. But He didn’t even give me a chance to cry out to Him for help and guidance, but simply guided me to write about my aching back, because of my wilful disobedience to my physical problem, then everything just fell right into place. So how can I not sincerely LOVE, ADORE, PRAISE, THANK and WORSHIP Him eh? Much LOVE!