Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 February 2018 1 Peter 1:3.

1 Peter 1:3.   Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us unto a lively (living, constant) hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

Well my faithful brethren, it’s Sunday once again, the Lord’s Day, and with it come certain commitments: namely to gather in the Lord’s sanctuary in true fellowship to praise and worship Him with humble and sincere hearts.  And though we are scheduled to get a bundle of snow in the Toronto area today, we must not let that stop us from gathering in the Lord’s sanctuary to exalt and glorify His holy name and receive His strength, confidence and assurance for the upcoming week. 

Glory to God my people! When believers get together to worship the Lord…Chuh! There’s nothing on earth like it. We sing and dance and pray and praise and listen to His awesome word that’s indisputable truth! Wow! How could any other gathering beat that eh? 

And as always, we shall open today’s proceedings with song. The Lord likes prayer, but I believe He is partial and sentimental to getting His glory and praise delivered in song. (smile) And that’s exactly how all the elders and other heavenly populace constantly praise Him. So let’s do just that by offering up a sacrifice of praise with our lips as we sincerely belt out the old Isaacs Watts favourite, ‘Our God, our Help in ages past.’ 

And please note, it seems like Isaac wrote it as ‘Our God,’ and not ‘O,’ or ‘Oh God,’ as has become popular. And as our voices rise to heaven in sweet song, let’s consider each word and sentiment we sing and realize, admit that they are gospel truth. 

As one earthly host now: ‘Our God, our Help in ages past, our Hope for years to come, our Shelter from the stormy blast, and our eternal Home. Under the shadow of Thy throne Thy saints have dwelt secure; sufficient is Thine arm alone, and our defense is sure. Before the hills in order stood or earth received its frame, from everlasting Thou art God, to endless years the same. 

A thousand ages in Thy sight are like an ev’ning gone, short as the watch that ends the night before the rising sun. Time, like an ever-rolling stream, bears all its sons away; they fly forgotten, as a dream dies at the op’ning day. Our God, our Help in ages past, our Hope for years to come, be Thou our Guide while life shall last, and our eternal Home!’ 

Yes friends, EVERY sentiment we just sang there is the living truth, and I hope it just melted our hearts, but simultaneously had it bursting with joy and LOVE for our wonderful God! 

No wonder Peter could so confidently declare in our Bit and following: ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us unto a lively (living, constant) 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) 

Oh friends, if there is one thing we’re certain of is hope of salvation because of Jesus’ resurrection! Glory Be! Now listen to the scholars: ‘1:3-5. The portrayal of salvation looks to the future. The author of salvation is portrayed as the blessed God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. The work of salvation (vs.3-5) is described as to its effect. 

Hath begotten us again refers to a new stage of life that begins at salvation. This lively hope has no element of uncertainty, for it is guaranteed by Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. The believer’s inheritance is described as incorruptible, imperishable or indestructible, and undefiled (i.e., morally untainted). 

That fadeth not away, means it is not subject to the ravages of time. Further it is reserved, that is, it has been preserved in the past and still is in heaven. Kept is a present passive participle – we are secure because we are continually guarded by God, who never relaxes His vigil. Salvation here refers to final salvation, that is, deliverance from the presence of sin, and into the presence of God.’ 

How could it get any better than that eh my people? When we place our sincere trust in Jesus we end up in a new stage of life, salvation, with an assured inheritance that cannot be corrupted, does not deteriorate, is morally untainted, and is specially reserved for us in heaven! And on top of all that, we are guarded night and day by an omnipotent Deity, who never sleeps. 

Mama Mia! Now I don’t know about anybody else nuh, but to me, that’s an offer I cannot refuse! And I do hope that ALL of you reading today’s Bit will feel the same way, because the other option is a terrible one; separation from God, and companionship with the evil Lucifer and his legion of evil cohorts.  

But to get that lively hope friends, we need to be born again. As Jesus explained to Nicodemus: ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again (from above), he cannot see the kingdom of God.’ (John 3:3) 

And when Nicodemus looked puzzled and asked about physically entering again into one’s mother’s womb, and being born again, Jesus clarified it for him. ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.’ (John 3:5-6) 

So friends, if we are not born of the Spirit, have a supernatural spiritual birth in the name of Jesus, most likely we will be excluded  from heaven. And that is certainly the worst thing that could ever happen to a human being. So please be warned, and wisely take the necessary steps to assure that your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, for therein lies salvation and eternal life. Much LOVE!

…as for me and mine…brother…we are definitely riding shotgun with Jesus…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 March 2016 Psalm 77:13‏‏

Psalm 77:13.   Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary (holiness): who is so great a God as our God?

Well hello there my beautiful fellow believers in the ONE and ONLY Jesus Christ; Lord and Saviour of sinful mankind, Son of God, Prince of Peace, Wonderful, Counselor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, etc. etc….! 

Yes friends, that is the magnificent Being, Deity, and God we serve! Now one would be extremely foolish to serve and worship any other! 

However, as sad as it is, there are many, too many on His planet earth who serve and worship other non-gods, foolishly placing them above the ONE who made the heavens, the earth and all therein. 

To them we can only say, ‘that’s madness,’ in a decent and LOVING manner now (smile), try to tell them about our great Saviour Jesus, who sacrificed His holy and sinless life on the cross at Calvary to pay for our sins, theirs included, and bring us once more into the eternal fold of His Father, Jehovah God. 

But even more importantly, while telling them all that, we should endeavour to live the kind of LOVING, caring, compassionate, forgiving and peaceful life that our Lord and Saviour espouses. For as they say, more flies are caught with honey than with vinegar. 

Yes my believing brethren, we cannot afford to brow beat the unbelievers, as so many of us do, because that will only turn them away. Best we lure them to Jesus with our sweet words and positive actions. 

Hn, hn! And I have to chuckle here friends, because I don’t know where all of that just came from, because I didn’t plan it. But came it did, and it does make wonderful sense, providing a useful template for us all to follow in our earthly relationships. 

Now it’s a beautiful Wednesday in Paradise, unfortunately my last, so let’s wail our Wednesday Wail with much enthusiasm, sincerity and conviction. 

As one proud and loud wailer now: ‘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 I will add another ‘Glory Hallelujah’ to that my brethren, because I’m so thankful for being alive in sweet Tobago on such a beautiful day! Glory to God my fellow believers! Now how can I look back at the past and dwell in it eh, when there’s such a glorious future to be had with Jesus? 

Remember we’ve got to keep looking straight ahead, so we can create straight furrows, for as Jesus says, he who looks back is not worthy to be in the kingdom. And we all see what happened to Lot’s wife when, against the Lord’s directive, she looked back as they were hurrying away from the godly devastation that was Sodom and Gomorrah; she became a pillar of salt. (Gen.19:26) 

We obviously wouldn’t want any such calamity to befall us, that is why we have to keep on worshipping and serving the Lord of the Universe, who provides us with sufficient to meet our earthly needs. 

That brings us to our very timely Bit. ‘Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary (holiness): who is so great a God as our God?’ 

Ah mih people, as per the second half of that sentence, there are so many scriptures to show the might and power of our God, that I don’t even know where to begin. But as they say, the best place to begin is at the beginning. 

So let’s consider how He made the universe and all therein nuh. He spoke it into existence. Note, He used mere words to create the universe, not any kind of heavy or busy action, just simple words. How much more powerful can we get eh? And if you don’t believe me, you can read all about it in the first chapters of Genesis. (smile) 

And note how He made man too eh: by simply forming him from the dust of the ground, then breathing His own spiritual breath of life into him. Up to now no other supposed deity or even the brilliance and ingenuity of present man can do that. 

Look at how He brought His chosen people, Israel out of Egypt nuh. Starting with the mind games He played with Pharaoh, the nine plagues and the killing of the Egyptians first born, from which the Jewish Passover was derived. You can check that out in Exodus chapters 7-10. 

Then look at how He got the Egyptians to give and lend their jewels to the Israelites, so that when they finally left Egypt after four hundred and thirty years, many of those under tough bondage, they left very wealthy. (Ex.11:1-3) All praise and glory to our great and powerful God! 

And what about the crossing of the Red Sea eh? Who else could have caused the simple stretching out of Moses’ hand over it, to part and allow the Israelites to cross over on dry land eh? Then when the Egyptian army tries to pursue them, Moses again stretches out his hand over the sea, and the water rushes back together and drowns the entire army? (Ex.14:21-30) 

The Good Book ends that chapter with these words. ‘And Israel saw that great work which the Lord did upon the Egyptians: and the people feared (stood in awe of) the Lord, and believed the Lord, and his servant Moses.’ (Ex.14:31) 

Aye mih people, that’s just the beginning of God showing His awesome might and power! We’ll continue with it tomorrow, the Lord in favour, because I doubt we can stand to hear about all of our God’s mighty works in one sitting; it’s liable to boggle our frail and simple minds. (smile) 

And our homework for today is to sit and ponder how mighty is our God, and seriously consider why we, or anyone else, would even consider serving and worshipping any other deity. Much LOVE!

…Elohim…O Elohim…God of exceeding strength and mighty power…