Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 November 2018 Ecclesiastes 5:2.

Ecclesiastes 5:2.   Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon the earth: therefore let thy words be few.

 

Wow Friends, these Sundays come around so quickly that sometimes you don’t even have time to think! (smile) We just get up and go to church by rote, like robots, without preparing properly for it. And though it’s good to go to the house of the Lord and worship with fellow believers, I believe we should pay careful attention to these words of Cousin Sol writing as the Preacher in Ecclesiastes: 

‘Keep thy foot (walk prudently) when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil. Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon the earth: therefore let thy words be few.’ (Eccl.5:1-2) 

Yeh friends, we have to be careful when we go to church, not to get too caught up in the moment and make vows and promises we can’t or won’t keep. The scholars offer this explanation on the verses. ‘5:1-7. The emphasis on the passage is on the folly of an empty religious profession before a sovereign God: God is in heaven, and thou upon the earth. God expects sincerity and meaningfulness in worship. He is not impressed with foolish vows.’  

And sadly many of us don’t take worship seriously enough. But please, let’s not do that today. Instead, let’s lose the empty religiosity, and gather together with the sincerity and meaningfulness that our God expects of His faithful followers. And let’s begin by showing it in our song of praise, which today is possibly one of the master hymn writer Charles Wesley’s most popular: ‘LOVE Divine, All LOVES Excelling.’  

As one harmonious and melodious choir, let’s put our hearts and souls into it. ‘LOVE divine, all LOVES excelling, joy of heav’n, to earth come down, fix in us thy humble dwelling; all Thy faithful mercies crown. Jesus, thou art all compassion; pure, unbounded LOVE Thou art; visit us with Thy salvation; enter ev’ry trembling heart. Breathe, O breathe Thy LOVING Spirit into ev’ry troubled breast! 

Let us all in Thee inherit; let us find the promised rest. Take away the LOVE of sinning; Alpha and Omega be; end of faith, as its beginning, set our hearts at liberty. Come, Almighty, to deliver; let us all Thy life receive; suddenly return and never, nevermore Thy temples leave. Thee we would be always blessing, serve Thee as Thy hosts above, pray and praise Thee without ceasing, glory in Thy perfect LOVE. 

Finish then Thy new creation; pure and spotless let us be. Let us see Thy great salvation perfectly restored in Thee. Changed from glory into glory, till in heav’n we take our place, till we cast our crowns before Thee, lost in wonder, LOVE, and praise.’ 

What a marvellous hymn my brethren! And we sang it with much fervour and sincerity too! I’m sure heaven was deeply touched! (smile) Now here is a brief explanation of the hymn from Wikipedia: ‘Like many hymns, LOVE DIVINE, is loosely Trinitarian in organization: Christ is invoked in the first stanza as the expression of Divine LOVE; the Holy Spirit in the second stanza as the agent of sanctification; the Father in the third stanza as the source of life; and the Trinity (presumably) in the final stanza as the joint Creator of the New Creation. 

Like many hymns, too, this one is a tissue of Biblical quotations, including “Alpha and Omega” (st.2) as an epithet of Christ, from Revelation 21:6; the casting of crowns before God’s throne (st.4), from Revelation 4:10; the promise that Christians shall be “changed from glory into glory” (st.2 and 4), from 2 Corinthians 3:18; as well as other, more general allusions.’ 

Whew! That’s what you call a brief, in depth, general explanation! (smile) But it all makes sense. Ah friends, today is also the day we celebrate as ‘Remembrance Day,’ in the British system, and ‘Veteran’s Day’ in the U.S. The day we remember all those who died fighting for our freedom and democracy. And believe me many many gave their lives on our behalf. So today we honour them with marches and speeches and memorials and services at their gravesites, etc. 

And this year it’s the 100 Anniversary of the signing of the Treaty that ended the first Great War. But we never learned from it, and unfortunately the celebrations are somewhat tainted, because those who survived all our wars, and the relatives of those who died, are finding it very difficult to get the monetary benefits, housing and medical attention that they deserve. Our governments talk a good talk on days like these, but when it’s time to get down into the trenches, it’s all hypocrisy. 

Just this past week the Canadian Government finally allocated a hundred and something million dollars that should have been paid to the veterans some time ago. And even with that allocation, who knows how long that will take to filter down to those in need. It’s the same poor attitude in the U.S. However, although we don’t treat the vets and their families as well as we should, at least we remember them in our prayers and ceremonies. 

And we’ll close with that ever-popular poem ‘In Flanders Field,’ written in their honour by Lieutenant Colonel John McRae: ‘In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row, That mark our place; and in the sky The larks, still bravely singing, fly Scarce heard amid the guns below. 

We are the Dead. Short days ago We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, LOVED and were LOVED, and now we lie In Flanders Fields. Take up our quarrel with the foe: To you from failing hands we throw The torch; be yours to hold it high. If ye break faith with us who die We shall not sleep, though poppies grow In Flanders fields.’ 

Ah friends, so many young men died in those unnecessary wars without having even lived life…But we thank them for their sacrifice and today we remember them, with LOVE and gratitude. Much LOVE!

…besides saying…lest we forget…what about saying…we won’t let it happen again eh…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 November 2018 Matthew 8:26.

Matthew 8:26:   And he saith unto them, why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.

Well here we are again on a Sunday morning, hopefully getting ready to visit, or having already visited the Lord’s sanctuary to get our reassurance and strengthening for the upcoming week, through praise, worship, fellowship and hearing the Lord’s word.

And I like Bruh Paul’s reasoning in Romans 10, re those calling on the name of the Lord shall be saved, especially when he asks: ‘how can they hear without a preacher?’ (Rom.10:14) That’s why we have preachers! (smile) 

But before we hear the word, let’s get into some hearty praise and worship to soften our stony hearts and make them more receptive to the Lord’s dialogue. And today’s song of praise is one we all know and LOVE, titled, ‘Put Your Hand in the Hand.’

According to Wikipedia, it ‘is a gospel pop song composed by Gene MacLellan and first recorded by Canadian singer Anne Murray from her third studio album ‘Honey, Wheat and Laughter.’ 

Wow! I knew that our very own Canadian Songbird from down the East coast had sung it, but I never knew she was the first to record it. And since then it’s been recorded numerous times by all kinds of singers and musicians.

Today, we’re going to send up a blazing, brilliant, harmonious and magnificent rendition to our heavenly Father, showing our sincere gratitude for all that He’s done for us through His Son, and our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. 

Now let’s bring tears of joy to the eyes and hearts of those in heaven as we sing: (Chorus: ‘Put your hand in the hand of the man who stilled the water. Put your hand in the hand of the man who calmed the sea. Take a look at yourself, and you can look at others differently. Put your hand in the hand of the man from Galilee.) 

Every time I look into the Holy Book, I wanna tremble. When I read the part where the carpenter cleared the temple See those buyers and the sellers were no different fellas Than what you and I profess to be. And it causes me shame to know that man is not what he should be. (Chorus: Put your hand in the hand…) 

Hey, my mama taught me how to pray, before I reached the age of seven When I’m down on my knees, hey, I’m close to heaven. My daddy lived his life with two kids and a wife and you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do But he showed me enough of what it takes to see you through 

This is what he used to tell me… Put your hand in the hand of the man who stilled the water Put your hand in the hand of the man who calmed the sea Ya got’a take a good look at yourself, then you can look at others differently Put your hand in the hand of the man from Galilee.’ 

Magnifico my brethren, Magnifico! The eyes in heaven are all filled with tears of joy! Glory be! And believe you me, that rendition was so sweet that the Father was singing along with us, not to mention that He is also grateful for the Son’s unwavering obedience in His plan to save our undeserving souls.  

Now hear the word. The story goes like this: ‘And when he (Jesus) was entered into a ship, his disciples followed him. And behold there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he (Jesus) was asleep. And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us, we perish. 

And he saith unto them, why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!’ (Matt.8:23-27) 

The answer to that question is not rocket science friends, but is quite simple: the winds and the sea obey Him because He made them and still controls them! And if you don’t believe me, then listen to the words of the psalmist:

‘They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. 

They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble. They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wit’s end (don’t know what to do)

Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, and he bringeth them out of their distresses. He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then are they glad because they be quiet; so he bringeth them unto their desired haven.’ (Ps.107:23-30) 

 Yes friends the seafarers know the Lord’s power, His all-around control of the wind and the sea, so they know to look to Him for succour in time of need. My brethren, we too should realize and acknowledge the Lord’s omnipotence and majesty and revere Him, surrender our lives, put our sincere trust in Him and His awesome Son, the man from Galilee, who rebuked the winds and the waves and caused them to be calm.

So let’s wise up and take His hand nuh; and hold it very tightly too, don’t ever let go!  It’s a no-brainer my people; the height of wisdom! Much LOVE!

..whose hand would you prefer to hold over Jesus’ eh…NOBODY’S…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 September 2018 Ephesians 6:11.

And once again it’s Sunday friends: our day of rest from mortal toil. A day where we are expected to spend time in worship and fellowship with other believers in the house of God, so that our souls and spirits can be renewed and refreshed and our Creator praised and exalted. 

And as always, each Sunday we begin the proceedings with a song of praise and worship, because there’s nothing the Lord likes more than hearing His praises sung, and it also softens our hearts, enabling them to be more receptive to His Word. And the song we’re going to sing is an ole favourite, the American Christian Hymn, ‘Stand up, Stand up for Jesus.’ 

But before we get into it, let’s look at its supposed history, a rather interesting one. Apparently it was written by a Presbyterian Minister, George Duffield Jr. in 1858, who at that time was an associate of one Dudley Atkins Tyng; a Pastor recently ‘removed from his local Episcopalian community for speaking against slavery. Duffield assisted Tyng in supporting an evangelical revival in Pennsylvania. 

In March 1858, Tyng gave a sermon at a YMCA meeting of over 5,000 men on Exodus 10:11, “Go now ye that are men, and serve the Lord”, converting over 1,000 men listening in the crowd. The following month, Tyng was maimed in a farming accident. Before he died a few days after the accident he told his father “Tell my brethren of the ministry, wherever you meet them, to stand up for Jesus.”  

Duffield then wrote the hymn based on those words. At a memorial service for Tyng, Duffield gave a sermon based on Ephesians 6:14, “Stand firm, wearing the whole armour of God”, and ended it by reciting the new hymn he had written as a tribute. After first publication, the hymn was popular and was sung by both the Union and Confederate soldiers in the American Civil War. 

The hymn also became popular among British revivalists and within public schools in England. As a result of the images of Christian militarism in the hymn, some people object to the hymn, and some people do not stand to sing it’  With such a colourful and controversial history, it’s no wonder it’s so popular. 

And furthermore, ‘Several melodies have been written for “Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus”. The one used most often now was written by George James Webb, who had originally composed it in 1837 for “Tis Dawn, the Lark is Singing”, a song in a secular musical show performed on a ship travelling across the Atlantic Ocean.’ 

Now let’s belt it out like we truly mean it. ‘Stand up, stand up for Jesus, ye soldiers of the cross! Lift high his royal banner, it must not suffer loss. From victory unto victory his army he shall lead, till every foe is vanquished, and Christ is Lord indeed. Stand up, stand up for Jesus, the solemn watchword hear; if while ye sleep he suffers, away with shame and fear. Where’er ye meet with evil, within you or without, charge for the God of battles, and put the foe to rout. 

Stand up, stand up for Jesus, stand in his strength alone; the arm of flesh will fail you, ye dare not trust your own. Put on the gospel armour, each piece put on with prayer; when duty calls or danger be never wanting there. Stand up, stand up for Jesus, the strife will not be long; this day the noise of battle, the next the victor’s song. To him that overcometh a crown of life shall be; he with the King of glory shall reign eternally.’ 

Yeah friends, that’s exactly what is required of us as followers of Jesus. We’re in a battle against the spiritual forces of evil and we must acquit ourselves as brave, courageous and loyal soldiers of Jesus. And the best words in the Good Book to describe our situation comes from the pen of Bruh Paul in his missive to the church at Ephesus, re putting on the whole armour of God. So let’s read and inwardly digest those fighting words nuh. 

‘Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (evil schemes) of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world (age), against spiritual (spiritual hosts of) wickedness in high places.’ (Eph.6:10-12) 

Oh my people, you might not see our enemy, but believe me, he and his cohorts are real, and they reside in many who hold high office in this realm. And as loyal Christians, we need to battle them to the death, or until Jesus returns. But like any soldier going into battle, we have to take serious precautions: ‘Wherefore take unto you (take up, put on), the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.’ (Eph.6:13) 

Fellow believers, only when we’re wearing God’s armour are we able to withstand the powerful foe that will keep on coming against us with evil schemes and demonic attacks. But we need to ‘Stand therefore, having your loins girt about (girded your waist) with truth, (the knowledge of God’s Word), and having on the breastplate of righteousness (holy character and moral conduct). And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace (a sense of eagerness or willingness to advance against the devil and take the fight to him). 

Above all, taking the shield of faith, (trusting God and believing His promises), wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of (dispel all doubts induced by) the wicked (one). And take the helmet of salvation (the assurance of salvation), and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God (rhema; selected verses of Scripture): Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.’ (Eph.6:14-18)  

Yes my brethren, we need to have all the accoutrements of war, but without prayer, it’s all in vain. Prayer is indispensable to our cause, and we must be vigilant in praying for all our fellow believers. ‘Spiritual combat is both an individual and corporate matter.’ There you have it friends, a quick discourse, or hopefully, to some of us, a jolting reminder on Spiritual Warfare 101.  Now let’s go out and put it into action! Much LOVE!

…soldiers of Christ…be well armed…stand strong…and pray always…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 March 2018 Psalm 40:3.

Psalm 40:3.   And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord.

Oh my faithful believers in Christ, it’s time once again for the weekly refuelling of our spirits at God’s fuelling station, His sanctuary! Praise the Lord! We all can use that refuelling as the world and the enemy have certainly put us through our paces this past week and thus our spirits are low on fuel. That’s why we are coming in droves to church; to hear His word, sing praises to His holy name, fellowship with each other, and consequently refill our spiritual tanks, so that we can face the world with confidence and courage this upcoming week. 

And as we’re wont to do, let’s open with a hymn of praise, an old favourite, ‘Count Your Blessings.’ It was written by one Johnson Oatman (1856-1922), born near Medford, New Jersey. And it’s said that he wrote over three thousand hymns, which means that ‘no gospel song book is considered as being complete unless it contains some of his hymns.’ 

Glory be mih people! Three thousand hymns are a lot of hymns yes! Wonder where he found time to write them all, especially when he was apparently a local preacher, a businessman with his father and an Insurance Agent? The important thing though is that he penned this one that we know and LOVE so much. Let’s belt it our now with sacrificial praise from our lips, and while doing that, see how many blessings we can also count. (smile) 

As one harmonic choir now: ‘When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed, When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost, Count your many blessings, name them one by one, And it will surprise you what the Lord has done. (Refrain: Count your blessings, name them one by one, Count your blessings, see what God has done! Count your blessings, name them one by one, Count your many blessings, *see what God has done. {*And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.) 

Are you ever burdened with a load of care? Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear? Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly, And you will keep singing as the days go by. (Refrain) When you look at others with their lands and gold, Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold; Count your many blessings—*money cannot buy [*wealth can never buy] Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high. (Refrain) 

So, amid the conflict whether great or small, Do not be discouraged, God is over all; Count your many blessings, angels will attend, Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end. (Refrain: Count your blessings, name them one by one, Count your blessings, see what God has done! Count your blessings, name them one by one, Count your many blessings, *see what God has done. {* And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.)’

Oh faithful followers of Christ, if we truly sit down and count the blessings that the Lord has poured down on us because of Jesus, will we ever be surprised! Why? Because they are so plentiful. Some of them we don’t even notice, they’ve been around for so long, that we now take them for granted. But please remember that everything in this world belongs to God, and it’s only through His wonderful generosity, mercy and grace that we can enjoy the good things that we do enjoy. 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord.’ Yes friends, it is an appropriate scripture for this morning. Having counted our blessings and finding so many, it’s only natural that a new song of praise to our heavenly Father will rise up in our hearts and souls! 

And Bruh David follows up our Bit with this other momentous verse: ‘Blessed is that man that maketh the Lord his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies. (Ps.40:4) What an awesome statement of indisputable truth! That’s the best way to receive blessings from Almighty God, both down here on earth and put aside some in heaven for eternal life. 

As Bruh Paul said to the Ephesians: ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.’ (Eph.1:3) Ah mih people, the Lord has blessings stored up for us in heaven, all done through the work of Christ. That’s why Bruh Paul also advised us: ‘In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.’ (1 Thess.5:18) 

And the scholars add this explanation. ‘5:18. In every event or circumstance (thing) the Christian is to give thanks to God for the good He can bring out of the event, even should the event be unpleasant. The constant attitude of prayer, mentioned in verse 17, will help the believer to maintain gratitude in the face of adversity.’ 

Yeh friends, we know it’s not always easy to look up in the tough times and give thanks, but please remember what Jesus has done for us, and that it’s only through and because of him, the Father is showering so many wonderful blessings on us. And with His help, we can do ALL things. As Bruh Paul so succinctly put it: ‘I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me.’ (Phil.4:13) 

And we’ll close with these words from the sons of Korah in Psalm 84 – Blessed are they that dwell in thy house. ‘For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.’ (Ps.84:11-12) That says it all friends! Much LOVE!

…he who has an ear…let him hear what the scripture says…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 October 2017 Isaiah 26:4.

Isaiah 26:4.    Trust ye in the Lord for ever: for in the Lord Jehovah (Yahweh) is everlasting strength (the Rock of Ages).

Ah friends, what can I say about Sunday that hasn’t been said already eh? The Lord’s Day, the best day of the week, a time of rest, a time for gathering in His sanctuary and praising Him and receiving His wonderful blessings and assurance in return, etc. etc! Yes my brethren, Sunday is a wonderful day in our faith calendar. If we don’t use it wisely, we tend to falter and flame out very early in the upcoming week. 

That’s why we need to gather and fellowship at least once a week, to renew our faith, bolster our enthusiasm and be replenished with the Holy Spirit of Christ, who leads and guides us, and enables us to do the will of God down here on Mother Earth.  So, as always, let’s open the day’s proceedings with this favourite old hymn of praise and refuge, ‘Rock of Ages,’ penned by Augustus M. Toplady, around 1776. 

With sincere hearts and strong voices, let’s offer up sacrificial praise to our heavenly Father. ‘Rock of Ages, cleft for me, Let me hide myself in Thee; Let the water and the blood, From Thy wounded side which flowed, Be of sin the double cure, Save from wrath and make me pure. Not the labor of my hands Can fulfill Thy law’s demands; Could my zeal no respite know, Could my tears forever flow, All for sin could not atone; Thou must save, and Thou alone. 

Nothing in my hand I bring, Simply to Thy cross I cling; Naked, come to Thee for dress; Helpless, look to Thee for grace; Foul, I to the fountain fly; Wash me, Savior, or I die. While I draw this fleeting breath, When my eyes shall close in death, When I rise to worlds unknown, And behold Thee on Thy throne, Rock of Ages, cleft for me, Let me hide myself in Thee.’ 

Oh friends, there’s nowhere safer in this universe than under the mighty wings of our omnipotent and wonderful God! And our Bit acknowledges it in spades: ‘Trust ye in the Lord for ever: for in the Lord Jehovah (Yahweh) is everlasting strength (the Rock of Ages).’ 

Those are words from the song of praise that will be sung when the redeemed enter the millennial kingdom. And the song continues to exalt the Lord’s strength: ‘For he bringeth down (low) them that dwell on high; the lofty city, he layeth it low, even to the ground; he bringeth it even to the dust. The foot shall tread (trample) it down, even the feet of the poor, and the steps of the needy.’ (Is.26:5-6) 

What a mighty God we serve and worship my people! There’s NONE like Him! And if you don’t believe me, then listen to Moses in his song of praise to the God of his forefathers. ‘Because I will publish (proclaim) the name of the Lord: ascribe ye greatness unto our God. He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgement: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.’ (Deut.32:4) 

And the scholars tell us: ‘32:4-9. A faithful God and a faithless people are pictured (in those verses). The Rock: The word is placed first in the Hebrew for emphasis. It emphasizes the stability and permanence of the God of Israel. His unchanging nature is contrasted with the fickleness of the covenant people…’ 

When will we ever learn eh my brethren? The same thing is happening today; a minority of us are putting our trust and faith in Almighty God; the Creator and Controller of ALL THINGS!  That surely doesn’t make much sense, in no way is it wisdom in any form or fashion. Lucifer, whom most of us are bowing down to in these rough and disastrous end times, cannot offer us anything but hell fire and damnation. And if that is what you desire, then go right ahead and get it, but as for me and mine, we WILL follow the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! 

Why? Just listen to Bruh David from Psalm 18 – Thanksgiving for deliverance, when the Lord delivered him from all his enemies, in particular Saul. ‘I will LOVE thee, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength (my rock), in whom I will trust; my buckler (shield), and the horn (strength) of my salvation, and my high tower (fortress, stronghold). I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.’ (Ps.18:1-3) 

What greater testimony to our Lord’s greatness and power can there be eh friends? And I like how all these men of great faith put their exaltation in song. Listen as we end with words from Asaph’s song, Psalm 83 – A prayer for the destruction of Israel’s enemies. ‘So persecute (pursue) them with thy tempest, and make them afraid with thy storm. Fill their faces with shame; that they may seek thy name, O Lord. Let them be confounded and troubled (ashamed and dismayed) for ever; yea, let them be put to shame, and perish. That men may know that thou, whose name alone is JEHOVAH (Lord), art the Most High over all the earth.’ (Ps.83:15-18) 

And friends, that is exactly what the Lord is doing all over the earth these days; letting us know that He is the ONE and ONLY TRUE LIVING GOD, and if we don’t bow down and worship Him, we will eventually perish! It’s as simple as that! The Bible warns us of the penalty for sin and disobedience from Genesis right through to Revelation, so we can’t say we’re ignorant of the facts. Please, I implore us, let’s be wise and repent and get in the good graces of Almighty God nuh, before it’s too late! Now that is wisdom of eternal proportions! Much LOVE!

…remember that God doesn’t make idle promises…and He promised…that the wages of sin is death…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 December 2016 Luke 1:46.

Luke 1:46.   And Mary said, My soul doth magnify (exalt) the Lord.

Well friends, all the excitement of the Christmas season is finally coming to a head. Soon the shopping and the wrapping of gifts will end and the partying will start in earnest. Hn! That is if it hasn’t begun already. 

And you know Sunday is the worst day that Christmas can fall on in terms partying, because a lot of people will be off from Friday to Wednesday, so that they can have the Christmas and Boxing Day Holidays to which they are entitled. 

However, let’s hope that the real reason for the season, the birth of Jesus Christ shines through it all, and we don’t simply make this most memorable day merely a secular time of eating, drinking and gift giving. Now those things are an important part of it, but not the MOST important. We have to get in some spiritual time in there too. 

But no doubt by the time the sun rises in the east this morning, we’re going to hear the myriad voices declaring ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! And Christmas Friday to boot! We have almost a whole week to do what we want! No massa looking over we shoulder and giving us a setta chupid orders! 

The drinks will be flowing like water, and the Christmas food… Oh Lord! Look how it spread out and looking pretty nuh! Oh thank you Lord for this Friday that falls in the Christmas weekend! Is party everlasting!’ 

Ah mih people, let’s hope that’s not how most of us see it. Jesus has to be light shining in the dark, the prominent figure, because it’s His birthday. 

Now let’s chant our Friday Chant which is not devoid of good times, but has a more moderate and Christian perspective. In unison now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Ah mih breddren, this weekend we have more than two short days off yes, so please let’s use them wisely and remember Granny’s saying: ‘Sonny boy, drunk or sober, please mind yuh business.’ 

Because for certain sure the evil one will be out on a serious hunting spree this long weekend, especially since we celebrating Christ’s birth. He won’t desire anything better than to catch a few of us offside. So please be careful. 

Now we come to a piece of news that’s not so great. I’m hearing this kind of thing too often these days yes. I just heard today that another of our Scrip-Bit family, Keith Noel, had a massive stroke in Jamaica some three weeks ago. 

Apparently his brother had died a few days earlier and he took it so hard that it brought on the stroke. So he couldn’t go to his brother’s funeral. Ah Lord eh! But the good news is that he was allowed out for two hours to celebrate his 40th wedding anniversary. Glory be!

Oh friends, please let’s send up some fervent heartrending prayers for our family member Keith, hoping that he will soon be back on his feet, praising the Lord for His goodness. It’s the least we can do. 

Finally, let’s turn to our Bit for today, the faithful and amazing words of the teenaged girl Mary, so rightly chosen it seems to be Christ’s mother. I guess the Lord would not have made a mistake there at all. (smile) 

‘And Mary said, My soul doth magnify (exalt) the Lord.’ 

Yuh know people, every time I consider the magnitude of Mary’s faith at so tender an age, in those dark and difficult times, it just boggles my imagination. But listen to her song of praise after she joyfully accepts her upcoming role with all the enormous problems it entailed. 

She begins with our Bit, then gladly declares: ‘And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded the low estate (lowly state) of his handmaiden (maid servant): for behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. 

For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. He hath showed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. 

He hath put down the mighty from their seats (thrones), and exalted them of low degree (the lowly). He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. He hath holpen (helped) his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy; As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever.’ (Luke 1:47-55) 

Oh friends, can you imagine a young girl speaking such enlightened words. The Holy Ghost must surely have been upon her to bring out that kind of reaction. And what we just read is known as ‘the Magnificat.’ 

The scholars tell us that it’s ‘based on the first word of the Latin translation (the Vulgate). It is rich in Old Testament imagery: Jesus’ coming was the fulfillment of Old Testament promises.’ And indeed it was my fellow believers! 

After Mary’s declaration, the Good Book tells us: ‘And Mary abode with her (Elisabeth) about three months, and returned to her own house.’ (Luke 1:56) 

Yuh see the wisdom of our God at work! He left Mary to bond with Elisabeth, to give her the required strength and whatever else she may have needed to perform the task He had set before her. And He does the same thing up to this day my people. He never gives us a task to do without giving us the wherewithal to do it. 

So please, let’s learn from Mary, and instead of complaining and carrying on about our God-given tasks, let’s rejoice and give Him praise instead nuh, especially in this wonderful Christmas Season. Much LOVE!

…there is no other God besides ours…great, faithful, LOVING and true…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 August 2016 Isaiah 35:4.

Isaiah 35:4.  Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense; he will come and save you.

Well a good Saturday morning to all you wonderful believers out there in LOVELAND! (smile) Yes friends, by the time we are finished with this world it will indeed be a land of LOVE, per Jesus and His LOVE Revolution! 

But you know what? To achieve that glorious aim, we, His foot soldiers have to truly be sincere and diligent and without further delay, seize the bull by the horns and just keep spreading the good news of His LOVE all over the universe! That’s the only way to ensure that the world is won for Christ!

Now it is indeed a tough situation to handle, what with Lucifer and all his evil minions also fighting for world superiority and supremacy, but look at what the handful of original disciples did with nothing but P2 (walking) and word of mouth.

It’s obvious therefore that with all the new technology available to us now, we can do umpteen times better than them! We just have to make up our minds to do it, then get on our horses and ride… (smile) 

And the wonderful thing is that nowadays you don’t have to even send out as many as missionaries as before, though they are still necessary, because a lot of the work can be done right where you are through the wonderful communications network we now possess.

So please, my brethren, let’s get really serious about spreading the LOVE of Christ nuh. Remember it’s our bounden duty, per the Great Commission. (Matt.28:19-20)  

Now let’s turn to some interesting words from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us. And in his first statement today, he seriously and wisely declares.

‘Do not let another human decide whether you are going to have a positive or negative day. You’re in charge of that decision, so make the decision to have a positive day regardless of how other people try to steer you in the negative direction.’ 

Ah friends, what awesome words of wisdom! We all know the controlling temperament that is predominant in today’s world, but as true believers, and strong individuals, we cannot afford to let others control us. Christ wants us to go in a positive direction, and that’s how we must go, regardless of what others think, say or do. We must make up our own minds. 

And the second quote from our wise friend Anselm, is even wiser than the previous one. Listen up; it’s titled “Life is how we view it.” And it asks these rather important questions. 

‘In your life, do you focus on those who have more than you or those who are less fortunate than you? Do you focus on how bad your job is or that you have a job? Do you focus on the smallness of your closet and house, or do you see that you have so many clothes you don’t have room to store them?

What eye are you looking out of? If you want the world to look differently, it may be easier for you to open the other eye than to paint the world.’ 

Well my people, I do hope that our answer to each question was the second half and not the first, because the first means we are too world oriented, with big eyes (greedy and jealous), allowing the lusts of the flesh to control us. And sadly, under those circumstances it’s not conducive to work sincerely for Jesus.

So please let’s ponder our situations, re that quote above, and make sure that we bring our focus into line with that of Jesus, seeking first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, after which all those other things will be granted to us. (Matt.6:33) 

And before we run out of space and time, let’s turn to our awesome Bit for the last time. ‘Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense: he will come and save you.’  

Oh my fellow believers, that one sentence is packed with so much encouragement, reassurance and promise, that if we truly believe it, there’s nothing in this evil, ungodly world that will faze us or make us fearful!

And why is that? Because it’s the solemn and faithful promise of our omnipotent God, the Creator of the universe and all therein, who never makes idle promises,  and furthermore, He has the power to make each and every one come true. 

Now listen to an example of the great power invoked in a promise, it concerns the strengthening of Daniel to receive his vision by the great river. “Then there came again and touched me one like the appearance of a man, and he strengthened me, and said, O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee, be strong, yea, be strong.

And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened, and said, Let my lord speak; for thou hast strengthened me.’ (Dan.10:18-19) What awesome power eh friends! And only the Lord God Jehovah, our wise and great God has it! 

And we’ll close with some more awesome words, from the song of praise by the redeemed. Hear Isaiah tell it like it is. ‘He will swallow up death in victory (forever); and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the Lord hath spoken it.

And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the Lord; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.’ (Is.25:8-9) 

Yes friends, that is the wonderful God that we worship! Therefore there is no need to be afraid or anxious for anything, because He will always look out for us, once we remain under the safe and protective umbrella of His everlasting wings! Much LOVE!

…all glory and honour be to the LIVING GOD…omnipotent…omniscient…and omnipresent…there’s none other like Him…

 

 

 

 

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