Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 August 2019 Revelation 4:11.

Revelation 4:11.    ​Thou art worthy, O Lord to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created (by your will they exist.
 

Oh my fellow believers, I bring you warm and plentiful greetings of peace and LOVE this Sunday morning from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Remember it’s the Lord’s Day; the day He rested after creating our universe, and He expects us to get in some rest today too, but also to join together with other believers in sincere fellowship in His sanctuary. And believe me, He doesn’t care whether our meeting place is a splendiferous cathedral, or merely a poor, broken down hovel. 

Remember what Jesus said: ‘For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.’ (Matt.18:20) Yes friends, our great and merciful God simply wants us to gather together to worship and praise Him and hear His Word so that we can be encouraged, our faith strengthened to go out and face the enemy with zest and confidence during this upcoming week. So today, please let’s make it a point to gather with believers of like faith and raise our hearts and voices to heaven in praise and exaltation.

And as always, we begin our proceedings with song, today’s being one supposedly chosen in a poll by the Hymn Society in the U.S. and Canada, as being the greatest Christian hymn ever. We call it’ Holy, Holy, Holy.’ Some might not call it the greatest, but it surely is amongst the greatest! It was written by the Anglican pastor Reginald Heber (1783-1826), apparently for use on Trinity Sunday, the Sunday after Pentecost, a feast day in honour of the Holy Trinity. 

As you can see it speaks specifically of the Holy Trinity with several references to passages of scripture in the Good Book. The claim has also been made that John Bacchus Dykes composed a tune for this hymn in 1861 and titled it ‘Nicaea’ as a tribute to the First Council of Nicaea, which formalized the doctrine of the Trinity in 325. 

And now that we have all that knowledge of the tune’s origins, let’s sing it in loud, harmonious voice nuh, making heaven sit up and take notice. All together now: ‘Holy, Holy, Holy! Lord God Almighty! Early in the morning our song shall rise to Thee; Holy, Holy, Holy! Merciful and Mighty! God in Three Persons, blessed Trinity! Holy, Holy, Holy! All the saints adore Thee, Casting down their golden crowns around the glassy. sea; Cherubim and seraphim falling down before Thee, Which wert, and art, and evermore shalt be. 

Holy, Holy, Holy! though the darkness hide Thee, Though the eye of sinful man, Thy glory may not see: Only Thou art holy, there is none beside Thee, Perfect in power in LOVE, and purity. Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty! All thy works shall praise Thy name in earth, and sky, and sea; Holy, Holy, Holy! merciful and mighty, God in Three Persons, blessed Trinity! Holy, Holy, Holy! merciful and mighty, God in Three Persons, blessed Trinity!’ 

Oh my people, I’m sure that all three personages of our Trinity were touched by that soulful and harmonious rendition! You know our God likes His praise. (smile) As the sons of Korah sang: ‘Sing praises to God, sing praises: sing praises unto our King, sing praises. For God is the King of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding.’  (Ps.47:6-7) 

But the words themselves are ever so relevant to the believer’s life.  Just listen to these sentiments nuh. ‘Early in the morning our song shall rise to thee.’ And so should it my faithful brethren. Bruh David enshrined it in Psalm 5 when he declared: ‘My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.’ (Ps.5:3) And our God sure is ’Merciful and Mighty! No doubt about that whatsoever. 

As Isiah said when the Lord commissioned him, and he saw the wonder of the Lord on His throne with the seraphim all around Him. ‘And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of His glory.’ (Is.6:3) And so it is indeed my people! 

Then in the second verse of the hymn, we have the vision of John per the activities in heaven: ‘And round about the throne were four and twenty seats (thrones): and upon the seats (thrones) I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment (robes), and they had on their heads crowns of gold…. And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal; and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four beasts (living creatures) full of eyes (symbolizing wisdom) before and behind. 

And the first beast was like a lion (representing strength), and the second beast like a calf (representing service), and the third beast had a face as a man (representing intelligence), and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle (representing swiftness). And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him (depicting movement); and they were full of eyes within: and they rest (cease) not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come. 

And when those beasts (living creatures) give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever, The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created (by your will they exist.’ (Rev.4:4, 6-11)) 

And that says it all friends! The scholars though expand on it some: ‘4:9-11. All of heaven worship the Father. The angels extol His character, and the elders (church) extol His creative powers. God has the right to rule and the sovereign authority to judge the earth, because He is both holy and the Creator of all.’ Please let’s remember that and live accordingly my fellow believers in Christ, for it will stand us in good stead down the road. Much LOVE!

…our Godhead…perfect in power…in LOVE…and in purity…

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 December 2017 Hebrews 1:4.

Hebrews 1:4.   Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.

Well mih people, we’re into the month of December and the Christmas season is already madly upon us! Oh the lights are up, people are busily running around in search of gifts and presents for their LOVED ones, planning office parties, and making plans to go home for Christmas. 

But before we go any further friends, let me make one thing abundantly clear: JESUS is the reason for Christmas and the Happy Holidays or whatever you choose to call them nowadays, and if you are not celebrating Him, His birth and glorious coming to earth, then you’re not truly celebrating Christmas. 

Jesus MUST BE, HAS TO BE, the focal point of the entire season, or else you’re just mouthing the man made platitudes and falling into the worldly trap of it being just a time for gifts and merry making. All the worldly trappings are, and should be just ancillary stuff to the importance of Jesus. 

Remember, WITHOUT Jesus, there would be no celebrations! Matter fix! (smile) Just thought I’d get that in there before we all begin running around like chickens with our heads cut off making Christmas preparations. Those preparations are supposed to begin and end in our hearts, with gratitude and praise and thanksgiving for Jesus coming to earth to save us. 

Now since it’s Saturday, let’s turn our attention to some quotes from our friend Anselm, who aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Hear this first one: ‘Never complain, never explain. Resist the temptation to defend yourself or make excuses.’ I don’t think I’d go so far as to say ‘never,’ because complaints, excuses and defending ourselves are a natural part of our make up, but we should certainly keep them to a minimum. 

And then there is this: ‘If you wish to achieve worthwhile things in your personal and career life, you must become a worthwhile person in your own self-development.’ That has the definite ring of truth to it! You can’t achieve unless you improve yourself. 

Now listen to this one: ‘Decisiveness is a characteristic of high-performing men and women. Almost any decision is better than no decision at all.’ I don’t know if ‘any’ decision is better than ‘no’ decision at all, because by making no decision, you are in fact making a decision not to make a decision. (smile) However to be people of integrity and good character, we must be decisive, and not continually waver. 

And this last quote is a gem. ‘The more credit you give away, the more will come back to you. The more you help others, the more they will want to help you.’ It’s just the basic law of God; give and it will be given unto you. How much you sow is how much you’ll reap. And have you ever noticed that in life, those who get the biggest accolades are those who seek them the least, Jesus being one of those people? 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.’  

And what I want to do today friends, is talk some on the subject of angels. We hear a lot about them in the Bible, but I don’t think our pastors preach much, or enough on them, more or less relegating them to a secondary or even tertiary role. But angels play a large part in the kingdom of heaven; they are like the worker bees in a hive, and have their own ministry. 

I think it’s time we learn a little more about them because back in Bruh Paul’s day, they were even worshipped, and he had to warn against it. ‘Let no man beguile (defraud) you of your reward in a voluntary humility (delighting in false humility) and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind.’ (Col.2:18) Basically these heretics, false teachers, would rob the Colossians of their spiritual blessings if they listened to them and worshipped angels. 

Now let’s see what the scholars have to say about angels and their ministry. ‘1:4. Angels are created spiritual beings who are servants of God. The word ‘angel’ means “messenger.” Though they also have power to become visible in human form, they are incorporeal beings (no solid body), possessing intellect, emotion, and will. 

The word ‘angel’ is always used in the masculine gender, although sex in the human sense is never ascribed to them. They have great power (2 Kin.19:35), but are not omnipotent. They have extensive wisdom (2 Sam.14:20), but are not omniscient. Their number is great (an innumerable company of angels) Heb.12:22), but not limitless. 

Illustration: Man is made “a little lower than the angels” (2:7), although the same writer reminds us that Christ is greater than the angels (vs.4). Application: There are a number of benefits derived from understanding the ministry of angels. When we realize that they constantly observe our Christian lives (1 Cor.4:9; 11:10; Eph. 3:10), we will improve our conduct. When we understand how they protect us, we will appreciate God’s care for us (vs.7). 

When we consider their tremendous strength and ability, we will be encouraged. Finally, their example of unceasing service ought to motivate us to more consistent service for God. (First Ref. Gen.1:1 – ‘heaven’ is plural in Hebrew, meaning God created the whole, with its innumerable separate parts, including angels; Primary Ref. Heb.1:4; cf. Heb.12:22).’ 

Oh friends, please check out those reference scriptures, I just did, and they back up and make clearer a whole lot of things. Hope this session on angels opens our hearts and minds and gives us a better understanding of the heavenly hierarchy and our place in it. Much LOVE!

…without guardian angels…we would be in a much bigger mess than we’re in…