Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 July 2020 2 Kings 6:16.

2 Kings 6:16.    ​And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.
 

And it looks like another cloudy day is in the offing in my area… Wonder if we’ll also get rain like yesterday? Ah, it’s so calming and refreshing when the rain falls – it also gets you lazy and in a LOVING mood… Now I could certainly handle that! (smile) But unfortunately we have more serious matters to attend to this Thursday morning in late July of 2020. 

Now today I’ve been led to some scriptures on encouragement in times of peril and need. I guess the Lord sees our overwhelming need for encouragement and assurance in these rather turbulent and uncertain times. So here’s the first one: This from King Hezekiah when the Assyrians under Sennacherib came to do battle against Judah, in particular Jerusalem. 

‘And he set captains of war over the people, and gathered them together to him in the street of the gate of the city, and spake comfortably (encouragingly) to them. Be strong and courageous, be not afraid nor dismayed for the king of Assyria, nor for all the multitude that is with him: for there be more with us than with him: With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the Lord our God to help us, and to fight our battles. And the people rested themselves on (were strengthened by) the words of Hezekiah king of Judah.’ (2 Chr. 32:6-8) 

Oh friends, those are some of the same words our God, that same God, is saying to us today in these frightful times! But are we listening? And if so, are we taking courage like the people of Jerusalem? That’s the million-dollar question! But that brings to mind another similar scripture – this time with the prophet Elisha and his servant when the King of Syria and a mighty host surrounded his house because Elisha was telling the king of Israel the secret things the king of Assyria planned against them. 

Now this particular morning when Elisha’s servant went out early, he saw the host of Syrians surrounding the city, so he ran back and informed Elisha of the grave situation and said: ‘Alas, my master! how shall we do? And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.’ (2 Kin. 6:15b-16) What marvellous words of encouragement, but unfortunately the servant could not see what Elisha saw. So Elisha prayed that the Lord would open the servant’s eyes. ‘And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots round about Elisha.’ (2 Kin. 6:17) 

Yes my people, likewise guardian angels are constantly all around God’s children protecting us, so that we do not come to harm. But we have to believe it to see it! Are we believing it though, or are we constantly being ravished by fear and the evil schemes of the enemy? But please remember these immortal words of Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound (disciplined) mind.’ (2 Tim. 1:7) Please my brethren, let’s root that scripture deep in our hearts and souls nuh, and let it grow and flourish to give us strong assurance in these disturbing times! 

Now hear these other encouraging scriptures that our God has been telling us from day one nuh. These from Moses to his people, when he handed over the leadership of Israel to Joshua. ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them (your enemies): for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go before thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Deut. 31:6) Then he called Joshua and told him the same thing. 

And what I LOVE about the passing of the torch from Moses to Joshua is that the Lord Himself told Joshua the very same thing when He appointed him the official leader. ‘Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.’ (Josh. 1:9) And not a word of that has changed down to this day my people! So why are we so afraid and fearful of life eh, when we have the assurance of the greatest power in the universe on our side? 

And if yuh want to tell me nonsense about all of that being in the Old Testament which doesn’t matter now – ah Lord eh – then hear Jesus’ most often used words in the New Testament: ‘Fear not!’ And hear His encouraging words: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) That’s Jesus telling us the same thing in slightly different words! So what’s our excuse now for not following them eh? 

Ah mih people, we just like to talk yes! And we must talk some, but all talk without any action is useless. That’s why James, Jesus’ brother wrote these oh so truthful words: ‘But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves…. What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? Can faith save him?… Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.’ (James 1:22; 2:14,17) And yes faith does save our souls like Bruh Paul says, but what’s the point of having faith if you don’t put it to work eh? 

That’s exactly what Bruh Paul did too. As he told Timothy: ‘I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith:’ (2 Tim. 4:7) That meant he had done what the Lord called him to do; preach the gospel to the Gentiles; he had put his faith in God to work, and we all know the numerous trials and tribulations he went through to do it. But the Lord saw him through it all…and so will He with us if we are strong and courageous, if we put our faith to work. 

And He’s so magnificent and magnanimous that He’s showered us with numerous blessings, to enable us to do just that! What an awesome God we serve my people! So as we go home now, let’s declare (awright!) some of those wonderful characteristics, what we call our Thursday Blessings, so that we can empower them in our lives. 

All together now: ‘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!’ 

And having proclaimed them, it’s time to go out and put them to good use now… generously too! (smile) Much LOVE!

…greater is He that is in us…than he that is in the world… (1 John 4:4)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 August 2019 1 John 4:4.

1 John 4:4.   Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them (the spirit of the antichrist): because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
 

Awright people, let’s go get ‘em this Monday morning nuh! Yes it is Monday, and the battle lines are already drawn! Satan is already working against you as sit on the side of the bed contemplating what to do; to call in sick, or force yourself to get up, do the three esses, get dressed, then face the awful traffic jam involved in getting to a job you totally detest. And in the midst of all that, you’re wondering how Monday has come around again so quickly? I’m sorry, but I can’t help you there nuh, because I’m wondering the same thing too. (smile) 

But I can help you to drive the enemy away and consequently change your thinking and attitude towards the whole scenario. And we do that through prayer, our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, which we put forth as the antidote for whatever ails you on a Monday morning. (smile) But believe me, it  works! So let’s try it nuh. All together, as one voice, in sincerity of hearts and minds. 

‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Yeah friends! Yuh feel the Holy Spirit moving ahready nuh! Yuh see how yuh spring up from the bed, full of vim and vigour, when just a minute ago yuh didn’t have the energy to even lift a finger! And now yuh enthusiastic as ever to get out there and do battle with ole Beelzebub himself! That’s what yuh call the power of the Holy Spirit! When it moves, it moves like a magnet, separating the sheep from the goats, the men from the boys, and God’s saints from Lucifer’s evil minions! 

Wow! So why wouldn’t you want that positive, powerful, vibrant life-force moving within you, and guiding your footsteps through this evil world eh, rather than the debilitating, negative, evil spirit that belongs to Satan? If you are wise, you will follow it, because it indwells every believer. And please remember Jesus’ words to the disciples when He promised them the Holy Spirit. ‘If ye LOVE me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he will give you another Comforter (Helper, Advocate), that he may abide with you for ever.’ (John 14:15-16) 

And the scholars explain: ‘14:16. Another (Gr. allon) stresses that the Holy Spirit would be “another” like Jesus. A Comforter (Gr. Paraclete) is an advocate called alongside for aid in time of trouble. See the same word in 1 John 2:1, “Advocate.” And Jesus continued: ‘Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless (orphans): I will come to you.’ (John 14:17-18) 

Yuh see friends, the world didn’t even know the Holy Spirit back then, and it still doesn’t! But we believers do, because as of Pentecost Sunday the Holy Spirit began dwelling in believers as Jesus promised: ‘But ye shall receive power, after that (when) the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.’ (Acts 1:8) 

And yuh see how the Holy Ghost come and mash up the place, create havoc on Pentecost Sunday: It showed up ‘like a mighty rushing wind from heaven and filled the house where they were sitting… appearing unto them (the disciples) like cloven (divided) tongues of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:3-4) That’s the amazing power of the workhorse of the Holy Trinity! 

But it can also work silently and subtlety, as Jesus indicated when He first promised it to His followers. ‘But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.’ (John 14:26) Ah mih people, that Holy Spirit is usually a silent worker these days; it talks to us from within, and we ought to pay serious and strict attention to what it says, because it is there to lead us along paths of righteousness and godliness. 

But here is one fact that we should always keep uppermost in our minds. John puts it nicely in his first epistle. ‘Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them (the spirit of the antichrist): because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.’ Mamma Mia! What a wonderful and encouraging statement of fact my faithful brethren! 

The scholars explain it thus: ‘4:4. Christ indwells believers; Satan is likewise the Lord of his own followers. But Christ is GREATER than he who wreaks havoc in the world. Have overcome is in the perfect tense, stressing the abiding nature of their victory. Their strength lies in the fact that they are (born) of God.’ 

Oh my people, please remember that all of that also applies to us, because we are also born of God, and Jesus has also provided us with the abiding victory over Satan, hell, death and the grave, our job now is to simply keep that victory going strong! Much LOVE!

…true believers…wisely use the Holy Spirit…to guide them aright…in this evil world…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 May 2019 Acts 10:38.

Acts 10:38.   ​How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.

 

Aye mih people, the ole fella took the liberty of sleeping in some this morning. Oh, we were actually up earlier on, but then we, my triune self and I; soul, body and spirit, decided that we were not well rested enough to face the rigours of the day, so we voted unanimously to go back to bed! (smile) I’m sure many of you know how that is. 

But an hour and a half later, I’m still not sure that we’re properly rested. However, being the good souls that we are, we’re up and about the Lord’s business. So the Bit will be late, later than it ought to be, because even then I took some time to catch up on some of the trending news on the computer. But so what? It’s Saturday, the day to unwind and relax! (smile) 

And just in case any of you are interested, it is wet and gloomy in my area. But that seems to have become the norm these days, so not to worry, because as true believers in Jesus Christ, we still have the greatest power in the universe dwelling in our hearts, souls bodies and minds! We talking about the Holy Spirit of Christ; that amazing and oh so powerful Being that dwells within us and leads and guides us on the pathways to righteousness! 

Glory be my precious people! And it’s so wonderful and reassuring to know, as the Good Book says, that ‘Greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.’ (1 John 4:4) And that’s gospel truth friends! The Holy Spirit is indeed greater than the evil one who rules this evil and ungodly world, so please don’t forget it, and even more importantly, please act like it! 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s see what quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he sincerely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Hear this first one: ‘People tend to complicate their own lives, as if living weren’t already complicated enough.’ And that’s ever so true friends! In these modern times with so much stuff available to us, we tend to complicate our lives so much more than we ought to. Life was ever so simple in our parent’s generation when they didn’t have so much to complicate it. 

And this next quote is also filled with truth: ‘Live the Life of Your Dreams: Be brave enough to live the life of your dreams according to your vision and purpose instead of the expectations and opinions of others.’ Oh we do have to take the expectations of some people near and dear to us into consideration, but in general, we should be living our dreams, our lives, not those of others. 

The Lord has a plan for each and every life He creates, (Jer.29:11) so it’s our duty to seek out that plan, and then live it to the best of our ability, with His awesome help of course! Too often we allow others to interfere with our lives and dreams, and then we end up not fulfilling our destiny. And that is always a mighty disappointment, both in God’s eyes, and our own! 

And this next one is also excellent advice: ‘Accept yourself, LOVE yourself, and keep moving forward. If you want to fly, you have to give up what weighs you down.’ The first part is biblical. John says: ‘He that LOVETH not knoweth not God; for God is LOVE!’ (1 John 4:8) 

And the Lord instructed Moses to tell the people of Israel: ‘thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.’ (Lev.19:18b). So accepting and LOVING yourself should be the norm, and if you want to fly, then logically, you need to dispose of any unnecessary baggage, because too much weight stops one from soaring into the wild, blue yonder. 

Then there is this: ‘Be grateful for what you already have while you pursue your goals. If you aren’t grateful for what you already have, what makes you think you would be happy with more.’ Now that goes against the very grain of this society, where wanting more is a way of life. Appreciation of the stuff, or being grateful for it is not important, just having more stuff seems to be the reason for living for too many of us. 

Our society has become too greedy and unappreciative. And the sad part is that most of the stuff we accumulate just sits around gathering dust, because like children who get fed up playing with the same toy, we always want something new, preferably the latest and the greatest, which just leads us into more debt and eventually more stress, when we can’t pay the debt. 

All of us have plenty stuff that we thought we needed, but now just sits collecting dust and deteriorating in some unknown part of our homes. Yes friends, more stuff doesn’t really satisfy the soul, it just leads it further astray. It’s oftimes better to be satisfied with a little, or whatever you have, and work diligently towards what you really want, not what you think you want. 

And the last quote tells us: ‘Be the reason someone smiles. Be the reason someone feels LOVED and believes in the goodness in people!’ Oh isn’t that beautiful friends! It surely is, because it’s our raison d’etre; yes my fellow believers, that’s our very reason for being! That’s what we were born to do! It’s a part of God’s plan for every human body He creates; doing good, putting a smile on people’s faces, letting them know that they are LOVED both by God and their fellow man! 

Mama Mia! When we do that, we’re following the greatest example ever, that of Jesus Christ. For as Peter said when he preached to the Gentiles: ‘How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.’ 

Oh my people, the same thing goes for us: the Lord has also anointed us as His special children and placed the Holy Ghost in us, so that we too can go out and help others, do good to all and sundry! That’s our bounden duty! So please let’s get with it nuh, let’s do what is expected of us by our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Much LOVE!

…as true believers…we can follow no better example…than that of our Leader…Jesus Christ…