Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 November 2020 Deuteronomy 8:18.

Deuteronomy 8:18.     ​Remember the Lord thy God: for it is he who giveth thee the power to get wealth…

Oh, it’s a lazy, hazy Saturday morning… and I’m late and hazy and lazy too! (smile) Did some other things before coming down to write the Bit, and now I’m a li’l miffed at myself for not getting started earlier. But them’s the breaks. Get over it self! (smile) 

And what’s the news this morning eh? Nothing has changed! The world is still in a volatile, unholy, strife-filled mess. And if you like the status quo, then I suppose that’s good news for you. If you don’t… well what can I say eh? Nothing but keep praying, repenting, getting back to God…and tell everyone you know, shout it from the rooftops that that’s the ONLY way our world will ever recover some semblance of normalcy! Nothing much is going to improve until there’s a big God-centred Revival in our world; a LOVE Revolution! Now that’s my stand…and I’m sticking to it! (smile) 

So, since it’s Saturday, let’s see what interesting quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And again, I only got three quotes instead of the usual five. And no, I’m not complaining – no way – because now I only have to wrap my head around three and not five quotes. Glory be! 

And he’s also continuing this new style of prefacing each one with this proviso: ‘Positive affirmation you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are. I’m calm, happy, and content.’ But please remember we are only awesome and truly happy, calm and content in Christ Jesus; when He’s in us and we are in Him! Much LOVE and thanks to our wonderful Lord and Saviour! And also as usual, we’ll leave out the proviso from here on in. But please remember it in the context of Jesus. 

So here’s the first quote: ‘I choose not to criticize myself or others around me.’ Now that’s such a wonderful attitude! And besides our world is filled with too much criticism these turbulent days, unsupported criticism at that too. It’s one of our favourite games in this time of social media and rampant technology. And it’s one of those games where we like to give, but can’t take. We all LOVE to criticize, but we can’t accept it, even when it’s useful and true. 

Let’s stop for a moment and remember these awesome words of our Leader, Jesus Christ nuh. ‘Judge not (condemn not, criticize not), that ye be not judged (condemned, criticized). For with what judgement (condemnation, criticism) ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete (use), it shall be measured to you again.’ (Matt. 7:1-2) 

In other words friends, do unto others as you would like them to do unto you, because whatever you do, in whatever measure, it will eventually boomerang right back to you, and most likely you will be appalled at it. (smile) As the ole people would say: ‘Do so ent like so!’ And that’s the gospel truth, for we don’t like getting back the negative stuff we throw in other’s faces. 

But listen to this explanation from the scholars on the subject. ‘7:1-4. Judge not refers to an unfavourable and condemnatory judgement. This does not mean that a Christian should never exercise judgement of any kind under any circumstances. The point being made here is that we are not to judge the inner motives of another. We are not to render a verdict based upon prejudiced information. Nor are we to use ourselves as the standard of judgement for with what…ye mete (measure) you shall be judged. That ye be not judged refers to the ultimate judgement of God rather than our own judgement.’ 

Hope that clarifies the subject and means that our criticism level will drop by at least three quarters, because a lot of the time we criticize, it’s not even that we have prejudiced info, but NO info at all. That’s how bad criticism is in these troubled and uncertain times! 

And the second quote proclaims: ‘My potential to succeed is limitless.’ Now that is certainly true…but again under the right situation and circumstances. One must first be filled with the Holy Spirit of Jesus and being obedient and obeisant to Him, so that we can be calm, happy and contented. But here’s the kicker in these words of Moses to the Israelites: ‘Remember the Lord thy God: for it is he who giveth thee the power to get wealth…’ (Deut. 8:18) Yes friends, unless we are living under God’s protective and powerful umbrella, our lives won’t be as thrilling, adventurous and successful. 

Remember His words to Joshua on remembering and meditating on His word and doing all contained therein? Why? ‘…for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.’ (Josh. 1:8) It couldn’t be any plainer than that my people. And the thing we don’t understand about being successful in God’s mercies, is that with Him, success is lasting, not the uncertain, fleeting kind that comes when we try to accomplish it in our own strength following the ways of the world. 

So here’s the last quote…and it’s a dandy! (smile) ‘Difficult times are part of my journey and allow me to appreciate the good.’ And is that the indisputable truth! Thus the sayings like: ‘you can’t appreciate the sun until you experience the rain,’ ‘you can’t appreciate joy until you have experienced sorrow.’ It’s only when we experience the bad that we can truly appreciate the good. And nowhere is that clearer than in Jesus’ economy, for ofttimes He allows us to go through rough times to test our mettle, to mature us in His style. For we all know that we only truly grow in difficult times, not much in good ones. 

Now in this evil and sinful world difficulties do abound. And Jesus didn’t hesitate to remind us of that when He said: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that ye might have peace. In the world ye shall tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) And He certainly overcame, hell, death and the grave. So he knows what He’s talking about. 

And His brother James puts it thus: ‘My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials); Knowing this, that the trying (testing) of your faith worketh (produces) patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire (complete), wanting (lacking) nothing.’ (James 1:2-4) Yes friends, we need to look at our trials from God’s viewpoint; that they are maturing us and making us more like Jesus in character which is God’s eventual plan for ALL of his children.

 And yes, most of us try to find a way to escape from the trials and temptations, but it’s necessary that we go through them if we want to mature and grow in our Christian faith. And remember too that the Lord has promised to always be with us, helping us all the way. Now that belief is what our faith is built on, and with it we can successfully navigate any problems we encounter in this world! So let’s stand strong and steadfast, surrounded by all of God’s faithful promises! Much LOVE!

…when trials and tribulation come…God’s saints successfully rise up over them…  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 March 2015 Proverbs 24:1

Proverbs 24:1. Be not thou envious against (of) evil men, neither desire to be with them.

Ah Friends, once again the ever-turning wheel of life has turned, and it’s fallen on that beloved day we call Friday!

And the working people rose up with a great shout of joy. ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday, and our woes of labour will soon be over for a couple of days! Thank God for Fridays yes!’

Yes my brethren, we have to thank our wonderful God for ALL things, both good and bad! As Job so wisely reminded his wife in the time of his tribulations. ‘What? shall we receive (accept) good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil (accept calamity)?’ (Job 2:10)

Oh Friends, whatever happens to us, happens with God’s full knowledge. He might not send a particular storm our way, but He allows it to test our mettle, our faith and trust in Him. And life becomes much easier when we acknowledge that everything comes through Him.

That way, if something untoward happens, then we can see it as a kind of test, which He is allowing, but at the same time will help us through it. That’s the wonder of our eternal God! He gives and he takes away, but He never causes harm. But nonetheless, as Cousin Sol reminds us in Proverbs: ‘If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small.’ (Prov.24:10)

Yes my people, adversity is the true test of our endurance, and our reaction to it shows the strength or weakness of our faith. Note that though Job was obviously upset in his time of adversity, he didn’t curse God and die, as his wife suggested. (Job 2:9) Instead, he stood strong during his time of trial, even to the point of declaring: ‘Though he slay me, yet will I trust him…’ (Job 13:15)

That, my Friends, is the kind of unquenchable faith those of us who live by faith and not by sight, need to handle the trials of our earthly journey. And to help us in that respect, let’s chant our Friday Chant with the enthusiasm it deserves, knowing that the weekend is nigh, and we’ll have a short break from our labour.

As one harmonious voice 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.’

Hopefully Friends, those words will resonate in our spirits this weekend, and cause us to use that free time wisely. (smile) And today we have a rather appropriate Bit for these extremely wicked and ungodly times. It comes from the wisdom of Cousin Sol. ‘Be not thou envious against (of) evil men, neither desire to be with them.’

And that my people is gospel truth! But for those of you who wonder why cousin Sol made that statement, he answers it in the next verse. ‘For their heart studieth destruction (devises violence), and their lips talk of mischief (trouble).’ (Prov.24:2)

Ah mih breddren, wickedness, evil, ungodliness and all sorts of negativity are currently running rampant through our world, but as followers of Jesus we need to disassociate ourselves from it as much as possible, otherwise we’ll become evil and ungodly too.

Now it’s really impossible to completely disassociate ourselves from everyone and everything that’s evil and ungodly since its tentacles are spread far and wide, high and low. However, when we do need to come into contact with that kind, we must ensure that it’s our godly and wholesome influence that’s ruling the day, not their ungodly and evil traits. We should always attempt to influence the evildoers, rather than let them influence us.

And there are indeed a whole lot of scriptures that advise us against hanging out with evildoers. Let’s look at a couple of them. And the first one comes rather appropriately from the first Psalm in the Psalter.

‘Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly (wicked), nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate (ponder) day and night.

And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers (channels) of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.

Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgement, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.’ (Ps.1:1-6)

Oh my people, it’s laid out plain as day, there for us. We have no excuses now for being ungodly and evil.

Now the scholars have some explanations that we should hear. ‘Psalm 1.  The key word in the psalm is the word blessed. It serves here as a pronouncement upon a man – but a certain kind of man. In essence, the psalm is teaching that the blessed or happy man is the righteous man.

The happy man avoids evil influences, deeds, and attitudes (v.1); he delights in God’s Word (v.2); therefore, God causes him to prosper (v.3). On the other hand, the ungodly is worth no more than chaff (v.4), and his destiny is judgement (v.5). Finally, the evaluation by the Lord himself is described (v.6).

There is an ellipsis (omission from sentence of words needed to complete construction or sense) which is understood with both clauses in verse 6: For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous (and it will be blessed), but (He also knows) the way of the ungodly (and it) shall perish.

The psalm forms an appropriate introduction to the Psalter since it sets before the readers the three characters who will figure mostly in the psalms: the righteous, the ungodly, and God.’

That says it all Friends! And since we certainly have plenty food for thought, let’s end here, then go and ponder it all. Let’s write the important things in our hearts, minds and souls, then put them into practice, into action in our lives, so that we’ll become stronger in faith and understanding. That’s heavenly wisdom, my people! Much LOVE!

…to not succumb to evil…we have to build our faith in God…to grow in righteousness…