Today’s Scrip-Bit   16 September 2022 Proverbs 3:35.

Proverbs 3:35.        The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion (legacy) of fools.

Yes friends, at long last it’s Friday. And we all exclaim with enthusiasm to burn: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday! Oh boy, the weekend is finally upon us, with no work and plenty of time to just party!’ And how the Lord and our employers do wish that we could have even a modicum of that enthusiasm for their faith and work. 

Ah my people, sadly our enthusiasm for work and God pales in comparison to the joy we feel for the coming of the weekend, because leisure and pleasure are our current idols. There’s little room for steadfastness and dedication, no work ethic or sense of purpose. No wonder our society is fast going to hell in a handbasket. We don’t realize that it’s a sincere work ethic and true belief in God that gives us the ability to get wealth and thus be able to afford leisure and pleasure. And that’s why all the great societies of this world have eventually failed and fallen from their great heights. 

It seems to be man’s nature that once we reach a certain stage of prosperity, we tend to slacken off and merely enjoy the fruits of our labour, without thinking or considering either the past or the future, simply the present. Meaning that we forget what brought us to our current level of prosperity; hard work and steadfastness in God, and likewise it will be those same things that will ensure our future prosperity. But no, we get bigheaded and full of ourselves, foolishly thinking that we can rest on our laurels and enjoy life. 

We conveniently forget the basic law of God’s universe; you reap what you sow. Thus, if you stop sowing good seed for any length of time, you will obviously not reap a good harvest. And unfortunately, leisure and pleasure don’t sow good seed, they just eat up, consume the harvest until there’s no more left to be consumed. So, wisdom dictates that if you want to keep on having some future leisure and pleasure you have to continue sowing good seed in the present, which will bring a harvest that will supply more leisure and pleasure. 

That’s why Cousin Sol warns us in Proverbs: ‘The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion (legacy) of fools.’ (Prov. 3:35) And that’s the gospel truth my brethren! If we are not wise in this life, our legacy will be foolishness, simply because those are the only two options we have. Consequently, Cousin Sol further advises us to get wisdom, for ‘Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour; when thou dost embrace her. She shall give to (place on) thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee.’ (Prov. 4:7-9) 

Yes my brethren, wisdom is so important that even God used it in creating the universe and all therein. Cousin Sol gladly informs us that, ‘The Lord by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens. By his knowledge the depths (deeps) are broken up, and the clouds drop down the dew.’ (Prov. 3:19-20) Therefore friends, if wisdom and understanding were so important in God’s creation of the universe, imagine how important it is to us nuh, especially in these turbulent and explosive times of today, with all kinds of lies, deceits and evil doings rampant in the world. 

And some of us are wondering what are these things called wisdom and understanding that are supposedly so important in living good lives. Well, wisdom is basically ‘skill in living, or wise behaviour.’ Meanwhile ‘understanding is the capability to distinguish between true and false, good and bad, what matters most and what does not matter at all.’ And for the best results, wisdom and understanding work in tandem. 

But it’s even more important to note that when we speak of wisdom, we’re not referring to what the world considers wisdom, since that varies and changes so much that you can’t base anything worthwhile on it. We’re talking about true wisdom, foundational wisdom; the kind that only comes from Almighty God, the Creator of the universe and doesn’t change or vary, for whatever reason. 

And James, the brother of Jesus tells us quite plainly. ‘If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not (without reproach); and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering (not doubting). For he that wavereth (doubts) is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.’ (James 1:5-8) Now that last sentence is an indisputable fact. So, when we go to God, seeking wisdom, or really anything at all, it is important that we don’t doubt that God can provide it, or will provide it, if it falls within His will for our lives. 

And here’s an interesting note from the scholars re verse 5 above. ‘This verse is not a blanket promise of wisdom for any situation. In the context of life’s trials, it probably speaks of the believer being granted (1) wisdom as to the reason for his trials and (2) wisdom to endure them.’ But this doesn’t mean that there’s anywhere better to go for wisdom in any situation at all than to God Himself. And one of the best examples of that is when Cousin Sol was made king of Israel after the death of His Father, Bruh David, and in a vision, the Lord asked him what he wanted. 

After acknowledging God’s goodness and mercy, (1 Kin. 9:5-8) he said: ‘Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people.’ (I Kin. 3:9) And that’s not rocket science friends, but simple common sense, if you believe in Almighty God! When you don’t know what to do, going to God in all sincerity and truth is always the best avenue. 

And I like how the Good Book records the results of Cousin Sol’s petition. ‘And the speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing.’ (1 Kin. 3:10) Now, because Cousin Sol didn’t ask for wealth or the life of his enemies, but for wisdom and understanding, the Lord most graciously and generously gave him what he asked for, as well as what he hadn’t asked for, wealth and power. That’s how our great God operates my people! When we acknowledge Him with all honesty and truth, He blesses us more than we can imagine. 

And now it’s time to practice what we’ve been preaching; going to God for wisdom and understanding. Let’s do it as one strong voice, through our Friday Chant. ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the viruses and our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the viruses and the unrest in our streets. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And as always, when we ask for heavenly help, it’s necessary for us to do our part in the partnership, by keeping our promises and having good motives. Much LOVE!

…a life wisely lived…is one that keeps God first place in it… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 November 2014 Deuteronomy 8:18

Deuteronomy 8:18.  But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish (confirm) his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.
 
And finally, it was Friday…!
 
And sadly there’s that first touch of that feared white precipitate (snow) on the ground in my area. Chuh! Now granted it’s only a light dusting, but snow in any form is deceitful and dangerous, so it’s always wise to keep a watchful and wary eye on it. (smile)
 
Anyway, it’s a warning that it’s now in my neighbourhood, and it’s liable to overwhelm us at any time, oftimes at very inopportune ones.
 
Nonetheless, with the realization that it’s Friday, an unbelievable amount of laughter and joy permeates the work place. Everybody is high-fiving each other and boldly declaring: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday yes! This labouring soon done, and we going to party away the weekend!’
 
Not so fast Friends, not so fast. Remember the weekend is not only for levity, but also for rest, renewal and some serious communication with our heavenly Father! So please back off somewhat on the party scene, because that’s why we’re always tired and miserable on a Monday morning, unable to get up on time to go out to make our living.
 
And to help us with that problem, let’s chant our Friday Chant in loud voice and sincere spirit. ‘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.’
 
Yes mih breddren, as good, ole Jeeves would say, we have to temper our enthusiasm for the weekend with a modicum of circumspection. (smile)
 
But it is certainly true; we do have to dial back a tad on the party scene, and give God a bigger piece of the pie, a greater amount of our attention, for remember, all that we are, and all that we have, comes from Him, not always directly, but He is indeed the source, the fountainhead of ALL our blessings!
 
That brings us to our Bit: ‘But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish (confirm) his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.’ Words of absolute truth, my people!
 
And the scholars corroborate this: ‘8:18. God…he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant: Yahweh alone gave Israel the ability to get wealth, and the blessing the nation enjoyed was the result of His covenant with the people and was the outcome of His promise to their forefathers.’
 
Now Friends, though we fall under the new covenant with Jesus, the source of everything is still the same; Almighty God…Jehovah Jireh – the Lord our Provider. Yes Friends, it is indeed our Creator who enriches us with ALL things!
 
As Cousin Sol says in Proverbs: ‘The blessing of the Lord, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.’ (Prov.10:22) And who should know better than Cousin Sol about wealth and God’s goodness eh, since he is considered the wisest and richest man ever?
 
And if you don’t believe Cousin Sol, then listen to Abraham’s servant to Laban, Rebekah’s brother, when he was sent out to find a wife for Isaac. ‘And he said, I am Abraham’s servant. And the Lord hath blessed my master greatly; and he is become great: and he hath given him flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold, and menservants, and maidservants, and camels, and asses (donkeys).’ (Gen.24:34-35)
 
And there’s no doubt that Abraham was indeed wealthy, both in earthly goods and spiritual enlightenment! And those things could only have come from one source; the great and wonderful God he diligently served and sincerely worshipped!
 
Now here’s another noteworthy example of God’s ability to increase earthly wealth. There came a time when the Lord caused Isaac to dwell in Gerar, the land of the Philistines. But for fear that the men of the place would kill him and take away his beautiful wife Rebekah, he lied and said that she was his sister. Like father like son eh? Brings to mind when Abraham lied that Sarah was his sister. (Gen.12:10-20)
 
But as so often happens our lies are eventually found out, and it’s rather interesting how Isaac’s lie was discovered. One inauspicious day, the king of the Philistines, Abimelech, happened to look out a window of his palace, and lo and behold what does he see? He sees Isaac sporting with (caressing) Rebekah. (Gen.26:6-11)
 
Obviously this caused some contention between Isaac and the king. However, after it was all settled, here’s what the Good Book says: ‘Then Isaac sowed in that land, and received (reaped) in the same year a hundredfold: and the Lord blessed him. And the man waxed (grew) great, and went forward (continued prospering), and grew until he became very great.’ (Gen.26:12-13)
 
Yes my people, in spite of Isaac’s deceit, the Lord blessed him very much because He had a sovereign purpose for him to fulfill, one he could only do from a position of power and wealth. Now please don’t take that as a reason for us to be deceitful. (smile) The Lord might not look down on us so kindly.
 
But be sure if wealth and power are required for us to do the work He’s planned for us, then wealth and power will be granted us, because He IS the ultimate source of ALL good things! I implore us to remember that today, and therefore live to suit. Much LOVE!
 
…constantly meditating on God’s Word…and being obedient to it…is of paramount importance in a believer’s life…for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous…and then thou shalt have good success… (Josh.1:8)