Today’s Scrip-Bit   21 January 2023 Romans 12:17a.

Romans 12:17a.       Recompense to (repay) no man evil for evil…

‘Sunshine, lollipops and roses!’ Well, a half out of three isn’t bad. (smile) We’ve got a touch of sunshine. And the truth is, it’s not even true sunshine, but less cloud cover. But we’ll take it over some sort of precipitation and thoroughly dark clouds. And having lazed away my part of this lazy-Saturday morning, I’ll reluctantly turn my attention to the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And we’ll jump right into this first and ever so important one: ‘Forgive people in your life, even those who are not sorry for their actions. Holding on to anger only hurts you, not them.’ And sadly, that’s the bane of so many of us in this weak, fearful and ungodly world. We refuse to forgive those who have hurt us, thinking that we can do them something by withholding our forgiveness. 

But friends, the last laugh will always be on us. Why? Firstly, because those whom we refuse to forgive will most likely go about their business unconcerned, while we will be stewing in our hate, anger and resentment, making ourselves physically, emotionally and mentally sick. We must realize that basically, forgiveness is not for others, it’s for us, for our well-being. 

And the second foolish aspect of unforgiveness is what happens with God, when we don’t forgive. How did Jesus put it in His sample prayer: ‘Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.’ (Matt.6:11-12) Yes friends, that’s what we’re praying, for God to forgive us as we forgive others. 

So what does that mean eh? Jesus explains: ‘For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your heavenly Father forgive your trespasses.’ (Matt. 6:14-15) That says it all right there my brethren. So please let’s forget this worldly nonsense about holding grudges and not forgiving, because we are only afflicting ourselves. 

Then there’s this quote: ‘Sometimes Those Trying To Bring You Down Don’t Know You’re Part Of The Reason They’re Still Standing.’ And isn’t that sometimes the awesome truth! So often our associates want to drag us down, or usurp our positions, but don’t realize that it’s because of us they are where they are, and without us they’d be nothing. 

And I guess the greatest example of that is the religious leaders of Israel who refused to accept Jesus and tried to railroad Him to His death, because they figured He would spoil the good thing they had going in the bowels of the Roman Empire. They didn’t realize that He was really the good thing that they needed, and He had come to save them. 

And unfortunately, it’s the same way with many of us; we resent and reject Jesus, but He’s the ONLY thing standing between us and eternal death and damnation. Please remember these ever so important words of Jesus: ‘For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.’ (John 3:17) And Jesus is indeed the ONLY reason why we are still standing! Please, let’s acknowledge that hard and true fact and behave accordingly. 

That leads us to the following quote: ‘A wise man once said, “Be careful who you let on your ship, because some people will sink the whole ship just because they can’t be the captain.’ Now isn’t that a glorious truth! And I can attest to that through personal experience over the years. The things some people would do for a li’l power is ofttimes surprising and unbelievable. They’d even torpedo their own livelihood just to be the boss. How foolish. But that’s the chain of foolishness and ignorance that Satan has some of us tied up in. 

Therefore,re we have to be very careful who we let into our lives, especially in these days of so many lies, deceit and fraud. Fraud is possibly the biggest crime going right now. And I just had one of those phone calls from one of the many current schemes that try to defraud you. And when you look at the missed calls, they are the same fraudulent schemers every day. They don’t seem to give up. Now, if they would just use that same persistence and perseverance in a legitimate job, they could do ever so much better. But for some reason or other, they choose the life of crime. 

However, having said that, this next quote shows us a better way. It says: ‘If you ever get the chance to treat them the way they treated you, I hope you choose to walk away and do better.’ Yes, that’s the right way, if you are a follower of Jesus, who expressed these sentiments. ‘Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, LOVE your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully (spitefully) use you, and persecute you; 

That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and unjust. For if ye LOVE them which LOVE you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans (tax collectors) the same? And if ye salute (greet) your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans (tax collectors) so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.’ (Matt. 5:43-48) 

The long and short of the story my fellow saints is that as followers of Jesus we are supposed to rise above the norm, not just do what others do but more and better. That’s the philosophy Jesus desires to espouse in His kingdom. And Bruh Paul encapsulates it so nicely in his letter to the church at Rome, by saying: ‘Recompense to (repay) no man evil for evil… Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.’ (Rom. 12:17a, 21) 

And this last quote is self-explanatory. ‘When a flashlight grows dim or quits working, do you just throw it away? Of course not. You change the batteries. When a person messes up or finds themselves in a dark place, do you cast them aside? Of course not! You help them change their batteries. Some need AA…attention and affection; some need AAA…attention, affection, and acceptance; some need C….compassion; some need D…direction. And if they still don’t seem to shine…simply sit with them quietly and share your light.’ 

Oh my people, in this sad, confused, evil and ungodly world there are way too many of us who are suffering from a dim bulb or weak battery. Too many of us are flailing around in the darkness, and it needs us believers to attend to them with the LOVE of Jesus, so that they can be set free, to walk out of their darkness into the marvellous and miraculous light of Jesus! 

And the only way that can happen is if we shine our light in their darkness. Like our Saviour so wisely recommended: ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid… Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:14, 16) Now, as true believers, let’s go out and do just that, today and every day nuh. Much LOVE!

…the goodness of God…is the only thing that will overcome…the evil of this world… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ   

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   30 October 2022 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.       Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Glory be my people, it’s Sunday once again! So come let’s gather round in joyful fellowship and give much thanks and praise to our wonderful God! As Psalm 100 so rightly tells us: ‘Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him and bless his name. For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.’ (Ps. 100: 4-5) Now those are words we can never doubt, because they are gospel truth! And Psalm 100 is so chucked full of wisdom in every verse that if you’re not careful it can confuse you. (smile) 

But there is absolutely no chance of confusion with this earlier verse that wisely advices: ‘Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.’ (Ps. 100:2) And since we’re ever so wise and obedient my friends, that is exactly what we’re going to do right now. And today we’re going to spice up our sacrificial praise with an old gospel spiritual titled ‘Give Me Oil in My Lamp.’ Yes, some of you ole fogeys will remember that one. It was popular way back in time, but it certainly hasn’t lost its saltiness, and is therefore still worth singing. So let’s raise our sweet, harmonic voices to heaven in an up-tempo, scintillating, foot stomping, handclapping version. 

Altogether now: ‘Give me oil in my lamp, keep me burning. Give me oil in my lamp, I pray. Give me oil in my lamp, keep me burning, burning, burning. Keep me burning till the break of day. (Refrain: Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King of kings! Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King!) Give me LOVE in my heart, keep me sharing. Give me LOVE in my heart, I pray. Give me LOVE in my heart, keep me sharing, sharing, sharing. Keep me sharing till the break of day. (Refrain) 

Give me joy in my heart, keep me singing. Give me joy in my heart, I pray. Give me joy in my heart, keep me singing, singing, singing. Keep me singing till the break of day. (Refrain) Give me faith in my heart, keep me praying. Give me faith in my heart, I pray. Give me faith in my heart, keep me praying, praying, praying. Keep me praying till the break of day. (Refrain: Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King of kings! Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King!)’ 

Ah mih people, I’m sure that reminded some of us of olden times when we’d belt that tune out in church. And is there ever need for oil in our lamps in these dark and trying times, if we’re to do like Jesus says: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:16) Yes, our lights can’t shine if our lamps are dry like Jesus’ parable of the ten virgins at a Jewish wedding found in Matthew 25:1-13. 

Five of the virgins or attendants were wise and five were foolish. The wise ones took extra oil for their lamps just in case the bridegroom came late. The foolish ones didn’t, and it so happens the bridegroom was late, and their lamps ran out of oil, and they had to go and get more oil from the oil dealer. But by the time they came back the ceremony was in progress and they got locked out. Wherefore Jesus ended the parable with these memorable words. ‘Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour when the Son of man cometh.’ (Matt, 25:13) 

Yes my brethren, the bridegroom is obviously Jesus, and the church his bride, as is mentioned in Matt. 9:15, John 3:27-30, Eph. 5:25-32), and the parable refers to Jesus’ coming again, the day, time, nor hour no one knows but the Father. That means we have to be in a state of constant readiness; the first requirement being obviously born again with the Holy Spirit indwelling us. 

A commentary on the song says: ‘For the religious, one interpretation is that it signifies a thirst for spiritual food—spiritual food to get one through the darkest of times in hopes of a brighter day, a clearer vision of one’s path or until one gains their salvation.’ And that’s a valid interpretation. But I like how the gotquetions.org website describes the parable in general. 

‘The five virgins who have the extra oil represent the truly born again who are looking with eagerness to the coming of Christ. They have saving faith and have determined that, whatever occurs, be it lengthy time or adverse circumstances, when Jesus returns, they will be looking with eagerness. The five virgins without the oil represent false believers who enjoy the benefits of the Christian community without true love for Christ. They are more concerned about the party than about longing to see the bridegroom. Their hope is that their association with true believers (“give us some of your oil” of verse 8) will bring them into the kingdom at the end. 

This, of course, is never the case. One person’s faith in Jesus cannot save another. The “Lord, lord” and “I do not know you” of verses 11 and 12 fit very well with Jesus’ condemnation of the false believers of (Matthew 7:21-23), “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.” 

Oh  my fellow believers, if Jesus said it, then it’s entirely possible. Anyhow, the song encompasses all that we need to wait for Jesus; namely, the oil of the Holy Spirit to light up our lives, that keeps our lamps burning, LOVE in our hearts that keeps us sharing, joy in our hearts that keeps us singing, and faith in our hearts to keep us praying. We can’t ask for more than that, because those things encompass it all. 

And I believe the end of the article from the gotquestions.org website, also makes a fitting end for our Bit today. ‘May we not be found “going away to make the purchase” (v. 10) when Christ returns. Take the time now to fill your lamp with oil and take extra along. Keep waiting and watching with joy and anticipation.’ Now that is wisdom of enormous proportions! Please let’s take strong and serious hold of it. Much LOVE!

…the moral of the story…be not found wanting when Jesus returns…

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ        

Today’s Scrip-Bit   1 October 2022 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.        Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Ah friends, the tiredness and laziness are certainly permeating the ole fella’s body and spirit this lazy, somewhat cloudy Saturday morning, the first day of October 2022. Now I like that sentence because it tells us so many things all in one go. (smile) But I think this lazy Saturday thing is getting into me, becoming a habit, and I don’t like it. I was up earlier on, did a couple of things, then went back to bed, claiming I was still sleepy. But the truth is, an hour or so later, I don’t know if I’m feeling any better than I did the first time I got up. 

Nonetheless, there’s God’s work to be done, which is one of the reasons I’m beginning to dislike the lazy Saturday idea, because rain or shine, sleet or snow, in sickness or health, I still have to do it. (smile) And God’s work on Saturdays entails looking at the quotes our friend Anselm sent us the past week and make something Christian-like of them, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And that’s not always easy, but with God’s awesome help, I always manage to turn out something respectable. ‘Thank You Lord!’ 

And we’ll begin with this interesting quote, which says: ‘If you make your internal life a priority, then everything else you need on the outside will be given to you and it will be extremely clear what the next step is.’ Now, there’s a lot of truth in that, provided Jesus Christ is your Lord and Saviour and you make Him, or your spiritual life, your priority, for He sincerely and faithfully promised: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) That’s food, clothing, and all the other necessities of life. But we first have to believe in Him, and then put Him first in all that we do. 

But I question the last part of the quote, for everything will definitely not be made extremely clear. Yes, somethings will be made clear, but a lot of it we will be expected to walk by faith and trust in Christ Jesus. For what’s the purpose of a God eh, if He tells us everything clearly and leaves nothing to our imagination or faith eh? None whatsoever! 

And that segues very nicely into this next quote. ‘You don’t always need a plan. Sometimes you just need to breathe, trust, let go and see what happens.’ And that’s the gospel truth! But you can only do that when your faith and trust in Jesus is strong, and you’ve already had some experience with Him. If He is your guide and protector, then you have to let go sometimes and just let Him lead and guide you. We call him the Good Shepherd, and that’s what shepherds do; lead and guide their flock safely and compassionately. And Jesus is the epitome, the master example of shepherds and shepherding. (smile) 

But in any case, as Cousin Sol so wisely tells us in Proverbs: ‘A man’s heart deviseth (plans) his way: but the Lord directeth his steps.’ (Prov. 16:9) Yes my brethren, our God is sovereign over our scheming and planning, that’s why so many of our bright schemes and plans go astray. (smile) If they are not in His will, then ofttimes He won’t allow them to happen. And even if they are in His will, sometimes it’s just not the right time, so they won’t happen either. That means it’s very important to recognize God’s sovereignty and will over our lives, otherwise His yays and nays will eventually drive us crazy, and possibly turn us away from Him, which is the worst thing we can ever do. 

Then there’s this quote: ‘No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world.’ Now there should be absolutely no doubt to that, since it’s been words and ideas that have been changing the world since the beginning of time. They are put in place before any action happens. And we have a great example in the fall of man. Satan spoke to Eve with words, planting ideas in her mind, re eating from the tree of Good and Evil. 

‘And the serpent said unto the woman (Eve), Ye shall not surely die. For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods (God), knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes (a desirable thing), and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her, and he did eat. And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked, and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons (girding coverings)’ (Gen. 3:4-7) 

And there we have it; the first words and ideas that changed the world, that brought sin and disobedience into the life of mankind! And I like how the scholars describe verse six, in terms of 1 John 2:16. ‘Good for food, appeals to appetite, or ‘lust of the flesh.’ ‘Pleasant to the eyes,’ turns us to the law against coveting in Ex. 20, showing as ‘lust of the eyes.’ And ‘to be desired to make one wise,’ according to the use of the verb ‘desired’ in Deut. 5 for coveting, appeals to ‘the pride of life.’ So that just set us on that path of lust and sinful desires. 

But there’s also another great example where words and actions wrought a substantive change to that first foolish and disobedient action of our forefathers. That’s the coming of Jesus Christ, the Son of God to sacrifice His sinless life so that man could be redeemed, be forgiven of his disgusting sins and disobedience and be once again reconciled to the Father. And how did Jesus put forward His plan to the people, with words and ideas, just like Satan did. And you’ll notice the amazing change in people when those words and ideas sank in. 

Then, when He followed them up with appropriate action…Wow! There was such an uprising of change and clamour like the world’s never seen before, and it’s been taking place down through the ages, even to this day! And in between, we’ve had all sorts of words and ideas that have changed our world, but none as big and lasting as those two. 

And this next quote also follows on nicely to the last. ‘What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you.’ More gospel truth my people. What has happened to you, and what will happen to you in the future, depends to a great extent on what lies inside of you. If you have the evil spirit of Satan lurking and working within you, then most likely you will be bound for evil doings and eventual damnation and hellfire. However, if you have the Spirit of Jesus, the Holy Ghost, dwelling within you, as all believers have, and you’re listening to His lead and guidance, then you will be able to accomplish marvellous things in this world. 

Why? Because the Spirit of Jesus dwelling within believers bears wonderful fruit. Fruit like, LOVE, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, kindness, faithfulness and self-control! Now how can those marvelous things dwelling and growing within you not produce most excellent stuff eh? That brings us to this last quote, another interesting one. ‘Do not allow people to dim your shine because they are blinded. Tell them to put some sunglasses on.’ Now that’s putting it nicely! 

Yes, friends, when that fruit of the Spirit begins producing good stuff in us and in our actions, then others will become jealous, disgruntled, or some other negative reaction, because they don’t want to see us shine, especially if we’re shining for Jesus. But as the quote advises, tell them to get a grip, to put on some sunglass if your light is too bright for them, because that’s exactly what Jesus wants to see from His followers. Like He said: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt: 5:16) 

And with that exhortation ringing in our ears, my fellow saints, let’s get out there and SHINE! SHINE for Jesus! SHINE like we’ve never shone before! Our world desperately needs us to shine in these very depressing and destructive times! And Jesus is counting on us to do just that! Much LOVE!

…the darkness of the world…can only be overcome by…the blazing light of Christian LOVE… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8     

Today’s Scrip-Bit   7 August 2022   Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.     Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

And another joyful Sunday has come along; joyful because we can gather and worship our great God, give Him much thanks and praise for His many blessings and awesome encouragement of the past week, and receive more blessings and confidence to go out and face the upcoming week, bold and unafraid in His magnificent name! All praise and honour be unto the Most High God Jehovah, who’s mercy endures forever to the undeserving children of men. And all the people, said a loud and grateful ‘Amen!’ 

So, let’s get on with the show by singing this wonderful Christian song of discipleship written by Christopher Rice in 2004 and sung by Kathy Troccoli, titled ‘Go Light Your World.’ In a heartfelt, soulful, harmonious, mid-tempo version, let’s raise our voices to high heaven in sacrificial praise. ‘There is a candle in every soul Some brightly burning, some dark and cold There is a Spirit who brings a fire Ignites a candle and makes His home. (Chorus: So carry your candle, run to the darkness Seek out the helpless, confused and torn Hold out your candle for all to see it Take your candle, and go light your world Take your candle, and go light your world.) 

Frustrated brother, see how he’s tried to Light his own candle some other way See now your sister, she’s been robbed and lied to Still holds a candle without a flame (Chorus:…Carry your candle…) ‘Cause we are a family whose hearts are blazing So let’s raise our candles and light up the sky Praying to our Father, in the name of Jesus Make us a beacon in darkest times. (Chorus: So carry your candle, run to the darkness Seek out the hopeless, deceived and poor Hold out your candle for all to see it Take your candle, and go light your world… Repeat… Take your candle, and go light your world…Take your candle, and go light your world.’ 

Oh my people, those words hold such valuable promise, and ought to be so inspirational to all believers, especially with the current troubled and ungodly state of our world. Remember one of Jesus avowed reasons for coming to earth was to bring light to a darkened world of sin and ungodliness. As He said so profoundly to the disbelieving Pharisees: ‘I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.’ (John 8:12) 

Yes friends, living for and walking with Jesus is all about basking in the light of His sinless self and the glory of His resurrection. Before he came our world was filled with the darkness of sin and evil as dictated by Satan, but when Jesus came, He came to set us free from that darkness of sin and ungodliness. Listen up, as He once again emphasizes His role as a shining beacon in a dark world. ‘I am come a light into the world that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness.’ (John 12:46) 

And just before that He expounded thus to the people. ‘Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth. While ye have the light, believe in the light, that ye may be (become) the children of light.’ (John 12:35-36) 

It’s therefore obvious that light through belief in Jesus, was a major aspect of His ministry and teaching in opposition to the darkness and slavery to sin that Satan espoused. And we see it also in His ground-breaking, revolutionary statement to the disciples: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.’ (John 14:6) In other words, Jesus is everything: the way, the truth, the life, the light – the whole reason for living! 

But since Jesus knew that His sojourn on earth would be relatively short, hence His saying to the people earlier on, ‘walk while ye have the light with you,’ it behooved Him to make other arrangements for light, His light to stay here and overcome the darkness on the entire earth. And the arrangement He made was that His believers, His followers, would take His place and do the marvellous job of spreading His light in every nook and cranny of the earth. And He said it loud and clear in the Sermon on the Mount: ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.’ (Matt. 5:14) 

And that’s the gospel truth! If you build a city on a hill, it is impossible to hide its light from the surrounding area. That means He desires His followers to be like cities built on hills, like shining beacons, to all and sundry around them. And that’s why lighthouses in olden times were built on hills, because their light could be seen for much further distances from a hill. And Jesus continued: ‘Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lampstand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt. 5:15) 

Yes my people, light is not meant to be hidden, but shone around as much as possible. It doesn’t make sense then, that so many of us are hiding our candles, our lamps, under baskets and not allowing them to give light to all that are around us. But that’s exactly what the song is telling us: We are all lights of Jesus, and His Holy Spirit operates in all of us, so let’s get our candles burning brightly and go seek out the ‘hopeless, confused an torn… the frustrated brother, the abused sister, be a beacon’ in these dark and sinful times, for Jesus didn’t come to save the whole and the righteous, but the sick and the lost (Matt. 18:11) 

And we’ll close with these heartfelt and most meaningful words of Jesus on the subject. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:16) Yes friends, as faithful believers, let’s take our candles and go light the world as Jesus so desperately desires of us, and the world so badly needs.. Much LOVE!

…followers of Jesus…must have hearts that are blazing…so we can light up the sky… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8​              

Today’s Scrip-Bit   2 November 2021 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.     Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Oh my people, on this bright and sunny but chilly Tuesday morning, let me greet you as Bruh Paul liked to greet his fellow believers. ‘Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.’ And I believe that’s one of the best greetings we can ever get, for what’s greater, more important and soul-satisfying than grace, mercy and peace from our Creator and our Saviour eh? Nothing! Absolutely nothing…well except for salvation and a place in heaven with them. (smile) But then, we only get that through His free gift of grace anyway. 

Oh what a wonderful God we serve my faithful brethren! And with His marvellous breath of life still flowing through us on another brand new day, means that He expects big things from His marvellous children! Ah friends, I think I’m getting excited here, and likely to be carried away on the wings of that excitement, so I guess had better handle it with a modicum of circumspection. (smile) But that’s what happens when the goodness and grace of God gets into your spirit. 

And that’s as it should be too, otherwise, what’s the use of those goodies eh, if not for us to live the abundant, excited life in Christ? Like He so faithfully promised in that famous verse. ‘The thief cometh not, but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10) And that doesn’t mean only eternal life when we die and go to heaven, but a good life right here on earth too. And we ought to be excited about it, otherwise Christ’s death was in vain. 

And I believe that this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, appropriately expresses how our excitement in living for Christ, ought to show out. It’s aptly titled ‘You Cannot Be Hid.’ Please read with me: ‘Lord, I’ve discovered that it’s never a secret When You live in a home For You simply cannot be hid. The neighbours soon know You are there Even strangers learn of Your presence. 

When You are the Great First in a home There is a radiance that speaks of joy There is gentleness, kindness Laughter and LOVE. There is commotion mixed with contentment There are problems mixed with prayer. Lord, Your own Word says it so vividly: ‘It was known that He was in the house.’ 

And that’s how every Christian home should be reflecting Christ! People shouldn’t have to ask if we’re believers in Christ Jesus, they should be able to see it from our behaviour, from the acts of LOVE, prayer and kindness that exist in our homes. Unfortunately though, too many supposed Christian homes do not show these attributes, so others don’t know that Christ lives there. Remember what Christ said, that those who reject Him before humans, He would reject before His heavenly father. (Matt. 10:33) 

And not being able to see Christ in us, in the way we live our earthly lives, is indeed tantamount to rejecting Him before men. For some of His most important words to us was in the Bible Promise on which our poem above was based. Namely: ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (a lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (a lampstand); and it giveth light unto the whole house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:14-16) 

And right there lies the crux of our problems friends: unbelievers are not seeing our light that comes from having Jesus within us, they are not seeing our good works, meaning that we are not doing enough of them to make a difference in this evil and ungodly world, otherwise it would not be so evil and ungodly. There’s no way for us to dispute the less than satisfactory Christ-like walk that we supposed Christians are taking in the world. Too many of us are either ashamed or afraid of showing out to others that Christ is a major, if not the most important person in our lives. 

Therefore, if our light isn’t shining in Jesus’ name, then it’s obvious we cannot do a good job for Him down here on earth. However, that’s our essential mission as believers in Christ. As the scholars explain. ‘The Christian is the condition (salt) to meet the world’s needs and he has a mission (light) to the world. His light is to clearly shine forth into the darkness of human depravity. He is to set his light upon a candlestick, not hide it under a bushel, that is, a basket. Darkness is the absence of light, and darkness alone cannot dispel the light, but the smallest light can dispel the greatest darkness.’ 

Glory to God my people! And that last sentence says a lot about our incompetence and lack of shown excitement for Jesus. I mean that if we had shown even a little light, there would not be as much darkness in the world today as it is. And please note the recently completed Halloween celebrations, where it was all about darkness and ugliness and evil accoutrements! That ought not to be in a world full of Christ’s light. 

Anyway, we will all answer individually for our actions and non-actions come the judgement day, but please, it is not too late for us to step up our Christian activities and try to do better in whatever time is left to us down here on this troubled earth. And I’m asking that we do just that. Remember that we don’t have a spirit of fear, but of power, LOVE and a sound or disciplined mind, so let’s put them to work in God’s behalf, like we are supposed to nuh! It would be to the benefit of all mankind. 

Now, for those of us who are sincerely trying to do our best for Christ, let’s go home declaring (awright!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, blissfully letting the whole world know who and whose we are, to whom we most definitely belong. As one, strong voice: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world. Amen!’ 

And having said that so vociferously, (smile) it is now our bounden duty to go out and actively and joyfully share that awesome LOVE and amazing friendship of Christ with all those we meet. Much LOVE!

…Christ gave up everything for us…why can’t we shine a little for Him eh… that isn’t too much to ask…

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8         

Today’s Scrip-Bit   23 September 2021 John 8:12.

John 8:12.     I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

Oh no friends, it did not clear up nicely in my area yesterday. In fact, it rained all day and during most of the night. But thankfully it seems to have stopped now and the sun is poking it’s bright and beautiful face out through the remaining dark clouds. And that’s how our God, our Jesus works in our lives; when the rain and dark clouds threaten to consume us, if we just keep our hope alive, we will soon see the power and light and LOVE of Jesus begin to shine through all the darkness that threatens to swallow us up without a prayer. 

But we always have a prayer, and when we use it, our Jesus will turn our darkness into light. Yes, He will turn it around with His majestic power and glory. And why do I think that eh? Because I’ve seen him do it numerous times in my life and the lives of others who sincerely believe in Him. And if you know His Word, you will know this major pronouncement He made many years ago while dwelling here on earth. He truthfully declared: ‘I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.’ (John 8:12) 

And if you take the leap of faith and trust Him on that matter, then you will see much more light in your life than darkness. For He is faithful that promised! But if you want to see light, the light of Christ, flooding your soul, life and spirit, then you have to take Him up on His promise and lay your burdens at the foot of His cross. And it’s not a promise that was just made in Jesus’ time, but long, long ago, the Lord promised it through the prophet Isaiah, when he prophesied: ‘The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.’ (Is. 9:2) 

And that light was the promise of Jesus coming to save the world from the sin and darkness that contaminated it. The prophet Malachi also told us about the coming of Light when he declared on the Lord’s behalf: ‘But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall (grow fat like stall fed calves). And ye shall tread (trample) down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the Lord of hosts.’ (Mal. 4:2-3) 

And the Father kept His promise when He sent Jesus to earth to save our souls from death and eternal separation from Him, by paying the price of our sins on the cross of Calvary and defeating hell, death and the grave when He rose triumphantly from the bowels of hell on that glorious Easter morn some two thousand years ago! Now that momentous occasion birthed the presence of the Light of Jesus in our lives, where, if we accept Him as Lord and Saviour, His Holy Spirit comes to dwell within us, to help dispel the darkness of this world, and we will forever live in His glorious Light! 

As John so eloquently and truthfully says in the beginning of his gospel: ‘All things were made by him (Jesus); and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in the darkness; and the darkness comprehended (apprehended) it not.’ (John 1:3-5) Yes friends, the darkness of this world cannot comprehend, apprehend or take hold of the Light that’s Jesus Christ! And there are so many important scriptures that deal with light and Jesus being light, that I don’t know what to choose. (smile) So let’s choose a few random ones to refresh our memories. 

Hear Jesus to the Jewish rulers of His time. ‘I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness. And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.’ (John 12:46-47) Oh my people, Jesus didn’t come to judge, but to save, so please let’s remember that nuh. 

Now here is this most appropriate scripture, as Jesus says: ‘And this is the condemnation, that (the) light is come into the world, and men LOVED darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth (practices) evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, less his deeds should be reproved (exposed). But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.’ (John 3:19-21) That was true in Jesus’ time, and it’s still true in our time. Evil doers hate the light because they don’t want their evil deeds to be exposed. 

And unfortunately, right now, the evil deeds in our society seem to be outweighing the good and truthful ones, that’s why so many of us are hiding from the light in the darkness. But friends, please remember that the darkness doesn’t hamper the sight of our God, for as Bruh David says in Psalm 139: ‘Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee (is not dark to thee); but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.’ (Ps. 139:12) So friends, trying to hide in the darkness from God is useless, as trying to hide from Him period! 

Then listen to some more useful words on light from the psalms. Bruh David declares in Psalm 18: ‘For thou wilt save the afflicted people; but wilt bring down high (haughty) looks. For thou wilt light my candle (lamp): the Lord my God will enlighten my darkness. For by thee I have run through (can run against) a troop; and by my God have I leaped (can leap) over a wall.’ (Ps. 18:27-29) And if that didn’t do anything for you, then listen to this most mighty verse of scripture from Psalm 119: ‘Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.’ (Ps. 119:105) 

Yes friends, the word of God indeed lights our way as we walk through this dark and sinful world. And if we are wise, we will take it to heart and practice it sincerely as these words of Jesus so wisely advised. ‘Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth. While ye have the light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of light.’ (John 12:35-36) 

Now that’s the crux of the problem right there my fellow saints; we must be children of light. Jesus was the light of the world while He was here on earth, but after He went back to heaven, He declared that His followers, that’s us, are now the light of the world. (Matt. 5:14) And as Bruh Paul told the Ephesians: ‘For ye were sometimes (once) darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord; walk as children of light.’ (Eph. 5:8) Yes, my fellow believers, that’s exactly how we ought to walk in this dark and evil world, ‘as children of light,’ so that we can fulfill Jesus’ desire. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:16) 

And the wonderful thing about our Lord and Saviour is that He doesn’t just tell us what to do, but He also gives us the wherewithal to do it. Consequently, we have his Word, His Holy Spirit and numerous other tools that we call our Thursday Blessings that enable us to shine brightly in this dark world. So please, let’s declare those blessings now nuh, that we can invoke them in our spirits. 

As one voice: ‘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 every day! Amen!’ 

Now let’s go out and shine brightly for Jesus, by sharing those blessings just as generously with others as he shared them with us. Much LOVE!

…to shine brightly for Jesus…in this dark world…that’s the believer’s bounden duty…                                                                                                                         

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8   

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 July 2015 Matthew 5:14

Matthew 5:14. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.

Oh Friends, I’ve run out of well known summer ditties to greet you with. (smile) But believe me, another beautiful summer’s day is in the offing on this terrific day called Thursday! Wow! The Lord in His ultimate wisdom, grace and mercy has prepared it especially for us to enjoy, and to do His wonderful bidding.

So let’s say it with joy and heartfelt gratefulness nuh: ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we WILL and SHALL rejoice and be glad it in! Glory Hallelujah!’

Glory to the great and mighty King that sits upon His throne in the high heavens and satisfies our longing souls with His tender mercies, grace, forgiveness, compassion, understanding and unconditional LOVE! Mama Mia!

Oh Friends, there ought to be nobody happier than us Christians, we faithful followers of Jesus in this beautiful world that the Lord in His wisdom and generosity has created. And the good news is that it does not seem like it’s going to be a scorcher, at least not yet, because a nice cool and gentle breeze is blowing out there, and both the sun and the Son are shining incredibly brightly in their respective elements. Oh Glory to God!

Ah mih people, please excuse the ole fella for his extra passion and passionate speech this morning. I guess it’s because I woke up feeling the best I’ve felt in ages! Glory to God again! The old aches and pains weren’t as bad as usual. I feel light and feathery, like I can just up and fly away! (smile)

It’s possibly due some to a shot of cortisone I got injected into my right shoulder yesterday, ostensibly to ease the agonizing arthritic pain in my right shoulder, but it seems to be helping everything, obviously with a touch of God’s favour and enormous grace.

Oh, I know the basic aches and pains most likely won’t go away, but I am enormously thankful and grateful for any bit of relief I can get. More thanks and glory to God! He’s so wonderful!

Now here is this most important, outstanding and truth bearing quote from George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950), the well known Irish born playwright and co-founder of the famous and prestigious London School of Economics, writer of plays like ‘My Fair Lady,’ and winner of the Nobel Peace prize for Literature in 1925.

George is reputed to have said that,’Life is not a “brief candle.” It is a splendid torch that I want to make burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.’ And we know that he did just that with all his world-renowned achievements!

Now it’s our turn my brethren to do the same. You’ll notice how we pass on torches at our big games to try and keep the flame going, the passion, the memories alive for those who come after us. That’s the only way later generations will know and understand where they are coming from, just like we learned it from those who went before us.

And note too, the batons we pass on during our relay races, which is symbolic of how we ought work together and pass on stuff to others in our everyday lives. And my One More Day Devotional for People with Chronic Illness, which is where I found George’s quote, adds an interesting statement to the situation.

‘If we assume that each one of our “small candles” represents another of our strengths, we can blend them together to form a torch of hope.’ 

I just LOVE that idea Friends! ‘A torch of Hope! Wow! I believe that is exactly what Jesus is looking for from us when He declares in our Bit: ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.’ Oh isn’t that the gospel truth!

Then Jesus goes on to elucidate after our Bit. ‘Neither do men light a candle (lamp) and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lamp stand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:15-16)

Yes Friends, being a light unto this darkened world is one of the two things Jesus desires of us down here. The other is to be the salt of the earth, as He says before our Bit.

‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden underfoot of men.’ (Matt.5:13)

Isn’t it interesting how Jesus used two basic, simple things like salt and light to spell out the way He wants his followers to be different from the rest of the world. It’s all a part of His simple, but wise and knowledgeable philosophy.

Now here is some stuff the scholars have to say on those topics. ‘5:13. The Beatitudes are followed by a summary statement of the basic character of the Christian’s life as salt and light. Ye are the salt of the earth: Again the phrase “ye are” indicate that only the genuinely born-again person is salt and can help meet the needs of the world.

Salt adds flavouring, acts as a preservative, melts coldness, and heals wounds. Thus it is a very appropriate description of the believer in his relationship to the world in which he lives.’  

And that’s exactly why Jesus chose it as a foundational characteristic of His followers!

‘5:14-16. Ye are the light of the world describes the essential mission of the Christian to the world. He is the condition (salt) to meet the world’s needs and he has a mission (light) to the world. His light is to clearly shine forth into the darkness of human depravity.

He is to set his light upon a candlestick, not hide it under a bushel, that is, a basket. Darkness is the absence of light; and darkness cannot dispel the light, but the smallest light can dispel the greatest darkness’

Oh mih people, what more can I say to all of that indisputable truth eh? Not much, except to encourage us to raise the level of our passion for Christ and His work, so that we won’t be found wanting when the day of Judgement arrives and the Lord asks us: ‘What did your salt flavour, and where did your light shine?’ As believers, that is the ultimate in wisdom! Much LOVE!

…let’s all put our small individual lights together…and form a torch…a torch of hope…that we can blaze across this world of inordinate darkness…and thus bring light…the light of Jesus to a needy, depraved and  fallen world…

P.S. Oh Friends, I know it’s long and late, but is it ever so true and heartwarming! (smile) Hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it – obviously with the Lord’s help and guidance. Much LOVE!

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 April 2015 Matthew 5:14 ‏‏‏

Matthew 5:14.   Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.

Oh Friends, on this Saturday morning in late spring, the ole fella is befuddled; doesn’t know what to say. Hn! Can you imagine that?
 
Well it does happen to the best of us at times, and thank the Lord it doesn’t happen to me too often. And I’ve been writing the Bit for so long now that I know eventually, in God’s time, He will direct me to write something that perfectly fits His agenda.
 
That’s the kind of wonderful God He is. He doesn’t leave you in the lurch when he gives you a job to do. We just get impatient at times and try to go our own way, instead of waiting for God’s input. That’s when we get all confused and screwed up, for without the Most High leading the way, we will certainly get lost.
 
Remember Jesus is the Good Shepherd, and if we wait on His call He will guide us safely and in peace throughout our pilgrim’s journey. Aye Friends, I’m chuckling here, considering that it’s a good thing I had nothing to say. Brother! Imagine if I had something to say eh! (smile)
 
But in the meanwhile, while I’m waiting for the Lord to guide me, here’s an interesting quote of a few days ago, from my friend Anselm, in his most worthwhile effort to inspire us all for a better tomorrow. He says: ‘Someone once told me not to bite off more than I could chew. I told them I would rather choke on greatness than nibble on mediocrity.’
 
And that my people is a most worthwhile response for a believer and follower of Jesus Christ! For Jesus doesn’t want His followers to be steeped in mere mediocrity, but to be people of excellence, of integrity, of great character, exuding diligence and top of the line stuff!
 
Why do you think He drilled it into the disciple’s heads: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savor (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.’ (Matt. 5:13) That means we have to be better than average folks.
 
And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘5:13.The Beatitudes are followed by a summary statement of the basic character of the Christian’s life as salt and light. Ye are the salt of the earth: Again the phrase “ye are” indicates that only the genuinely born- again person can help meet the needs of the world.
 
Salt adds flavouring, acts as preservative, melts coldness, and heals wounds. Thus it is a very appropriate description of the believer in his relationship to the world in which he lives.’
 
And then Jesus drops the other philosophical bomb on them, in the words of our Bit. ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.’ And that’s an indisputable fact Friends! A city that’s sits on a hill and is lit up, can be seen for miles around.
 
And Jesus continues: ‘Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lampstand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:15-16)
 
And the scholars explain those two verses thus: ‘5:14-16. Ye are the light of the world describes the essential mission of the Christian to the world. He is the condition (salt) to meet the world’s needs and he has a mission (light) to the world. His light is to clearly shine forth into the darkness of human depravity.
 
He is to set his light upon a candlestick, not hide it under a bushel, that is, a basket. Darkness is the absence of light; and darkness alone cannot dispel the light, but the smallest light can dispel the greatest darkness.’
 
Words to live by my brethren! Light is the master of darkness, just like Jesus is master over Lucifer! So please let’s remember that we are here to perform an important job; show the world what Jesus is all about.
 
That means we can’t be wishy-washy and lackadaisical, but as Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) is won’t to say: ‘We must look our best, do our best and be our best!’ That’s the picture Jesus wants us to show the world.
 
So Friends, let’s ponder all that we’ve said today, then try to put it all into action in our lives, so that we can be excellent ambassadors for Jesus. That’s our raison d’etre! Much LOVE!
 
…to glorify God…we need to always put our best foot forward…be flavourful salt…and be brilliant light… 
 
P.S. Oh Friends, it’s pretty short today, so there’s no need to complain. I guess I really didn’t have anything much to say. (smile) Much LOVE!