Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 January 2021 John 17:17.

John 17:17.     ​Sanctify them (set them apart) through thy truth: thy word is truth.

Yes mih bredrin, riddle I this, riddle I that nuh! (smile) How can a body go to bed, early to boot, feeling fine, then wake up coughing and being miserable eh? And all the foolish cough doing is to irritate the dormant asthma and getting me more ignorant than usual. Yeh, coughing is the easiest way for the enemy to make me lose my cool. 

But yuh know what? Ah lick him this morning by getting into worship mode and listening to some praise songs. Glory Hallelujah! Still listening to them as I’m writing. Thank you for Jesus and His songs of praise and worship! They are indeed healing medicine to the angry spirit. And although the chest is still tight and wheezy, the spirit is fine friends! 

Thanks be to the refreshing and comforting words and promises of Jesus in song! And that’s my testimony for this Tuesday morning, this snowy Tuesday morning in January of this new and unknown year of 2021, when so many unordinary things have seemingly become ordinary. 

Oh my people, we are in the middle of some extraordinary times, and on the brink of even more extraordinary ones, if life plays out the way it’s shaping up. And no reason why it should not. But there’s one thing all we believers ought to know and believe; that is, come what may, we will all make it through, and safely too, because that’s the glorious promise of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

Be concerned yes, but don’t be worried, for Jesus has all those who believe in Him in the palms of His mighty hands. And I just want to point out some wonderful scripture where Jesus prays for His own, that’s us! Glory be! 

‘And now, O Father, glorify thou me, with (alongside) thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was. (Clear indication of His pre-existence (cf. 1:1) I have manifested (revealed) thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them (to) me; and they have kept thy word. 

Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee. For I have given unto them the words which thou hast given me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me. I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine. And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.’ (John 17:5-10) 

Yeh friends, even Jesus, the Son of God, knew the power and purpose of prayer! In his final hours down here on earth He beseeched the Father on our behalf. That’s how important we were, and are, and always will be to Him! That’s why we need to keep our faith strong, keep on believing in Him just like He believed and still believes in us. That’s why He made us His earthly ambassadors! 

Now hear Him further nuh: ‘And now I am no more (longer) in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee, Holy father; keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.’ (John 17:11) 

Yuh hear that people, Jesus prayed that we would be ONE, just like He and the Father were ONE! How come we so divided and disunited eh? Could that be one of the problems why our world and lives are in such a disgusting state? Oh yes! It surely contributes to the ungodly and inhuman way we living. 

But let’s keep on listening to Jesus: ‘While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost (destroyed), but the son of perdition (Judas Iscariot); that the scripture might be fulfilled.’ (John 17:12) Yes friends, Jesus did not lose any of those whom God gave Him to propagate His word on earth after Him: none except Judas. But that had to be so that the written scripture might be fulfilled. 

‘And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.’ (John 17:13) Wow! Yuh hear that friends, Jesus desired that we might have His joy fulfilled in us! So why we are we so blooming miserable and unhappy eh, when we have the joy of Christ Himself dwelling in us? Because we fear the world and what it brings. 

But listen to Jesus again: ‘I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world. Even as I am not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil (one). They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.’ (John 17:14-16) 

Oh my people can we understand that we are not of this world, but we have to be in it if we want to spread Christ’s message. And that’s why Jesus asked the Father: ‘Sanctify them (set them apart) through thy truth: thy word is truth. As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.’ (John 17:17-19) 

Oh believers in Christ, the truth of God’s Word is what’s supposed to set us apart from the world, but is it doing that right now? Not to the extent it ought to. But hear this oh so important part of Jesus’ prayer nuh. ‘Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;’ (John 17:20) 

That means us friends! Jesus had the foresight to pray for those who came to believe in Him all down through the ages, until His second coming. So what’s going on with us eh? Why are we living like the rest of the world and not sanctified, justified, reconciled, righteous saints of Christ eh? 

And hear this last part of Jesus’ prayer. ‘That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast LOVED them, as thou hast LOVED me.’ (John 17:21-23) 

What’s in all of that we don’t understand eh people? We were set apart, to be ONE, so we could show the world the truth of God’s Word! But we definitely could not be call unified, or even close to being ONE! No wonder the world doesn’t take us seriously. And until we become more unified and not more divided, as we seem to be getting, we’ll have little or no power to change the world in Jesus’ name! Nuff said! 

But for those of us who are sincerely trying to do what Christ desires of us, let’s go home now declaring (oh yeah!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. 

As ONE now:‘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!’  

So let’s go out and do just that nuh! Much LOVE!

…only as Christ’s people are unified…will they truly have changing power… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 January 2021 Lamentations 3:26.

Lamentations 3:26.     ​It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.

Well hello there Tuesday; you new and beautiful day, filled with brand new mercies and compassions from the Lord God Almighty! What a wonderful God we serve friends, as He sends us new mercies and compassions every single day. Isn’t that great? It surely is, since who would really want old compassions and mercies from the day before, when, like fresh bread, (smile) we can get them brand new every day eh. 

That’s why we ought to be so grateful to our God and give Him much thanks and praise. Yes my people, it’s only because of the Lord’s goodness, LOVE and faithfulness towards us that we are not consumed; it’s not because of anything we do. Hence, we ought to take very seriously, these illuminating, edifying and encouraging words from Jeremiah’s Lamentations. ‘The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.’ (Lam. 3:24-26) 

And the scholars confirm that when they say: ‘3:26. Jeremiah’s observation resembles those of other saints who have experienced great grief of soul. (Hab. 2:20; 3:17-19; cf. Job 40:3-5; Ps. 37:7; 73:23-27; Is. 26:3; 2 Cor. 1:7; 2 Thess. 3:5).’ 

Oh friends, I just looked up all those scriptures, all from men who suffered much for the Lord – Habakkuk, Job, Bruh David, Asaph, Isaiah, and Bruh Paul – and they were all overwhelmingly in favour of seeking for and waiting on God despite the troubles of this life. That’s because God is good and faithful and merciful to those who sincerely seek and wait for Him. 

So, no wonder the scholars further tell us, it requires in return ‘the need for the believer to be also faithful in his life and service to God (2 Chr. 19:9; Ps. 119:30; Prov. 12:22). And that real faith is more than inner belief, even more than whole-souled committal. It is a condition of the soul marked by such a stable character and an attitude of total trust that the believer’s whole life is imbued with consistent, responsible service to God (cf. 1 Sam. 26:23; Ps. 37:3-6). From the biblical standpoint, true faith results in faithfulness in one’s life.’ 

I couldn’t put it any better my people. And we just going to look at the two examples the scholars mention there. The first is when Bruh David had the chance to kill his nemesis Saul, but refused to kill him, explaining it with these words. ‘The Lord render to every man his righteousness and his faithfulness: for the Lord delivered thee into my hand today, but I would not stretch forth my hand against the Lord’s anointed.’ (1 Sam. 26:23) 

Yes friends, that just shows the difference between Saul and Bruh David in their faithfulness to the Lord. Saul knew that Bruh David was anointed to be the next king of Israel, but that never stopped him, in fact that was the main reason he wanted to kill him. Bruh David though had a higher standard. And that’s what all we supposed believers need; a higher standard of behaviour, faithfulness and righteousness than that displayed by the world. 

And I guess we can’t get any better encouragement or advice than from these immortal words of Bruh David from Psalm 37 – The true state of the wicked. ‘Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed (feed on His faithfulness). Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. 

And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgement (justice) as the noon day. Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices (schemes) to pass. Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil (it only causes harm). For evildoers shall be cut off (destroyed): but those who wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth.’ (Ps. 37:3-9) 

Now my brethren, if that didn’t stir us up to greater service and faithfulness, I don’t know what will. But I can certainly offer a couple more enticements, (smile) the first being this: ‘The Bible is God’s Word to us, still fresh through all the ages. And if we read it, we will find God’s wisdom on its pages.’ And this is the second enticement: ‘One truth from the Bible is worth more than all the wisdom of man.’ 

And isn’t that indisputable! So I don’t know why we keep on turning away from God, thinking that we can do better than Him? Just look at the sad and sorry state of our lives today nuh. When are we going to wake up and realize that we don’t control our own destiny, but God Almighty who created us does, and when we turn away from Him, we just make a big mess of our lives? 

Anyway, for those of us who get the message, let’s go home now declaring (yeahhh!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are. So, as one, in strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘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!’ 

Now faithful people of God, let’s go out and do just that nuh! Much LOVE!

…faithfulness ought to beget faithfulness…  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 November 2020 Isaiah 30:21.

Isaiah 30:21.     ​And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.

Well this Tuesday morning has opened somewhat hazy and cloudy in my area. Let’s hope that will not be the state of affairs for the day, because I have to go out the street and run some errands later on in the day. But be that as it may, I will not cower and run from the physical weather, (smile) because I have the bright sunshine of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour permeating my very being, and with that holy presence in me, and also in you believers, we can withstand anything that comes against us, with an amazing attitude of peace and joy too! Oh glory be to Jesus my people for all His wonderful sacrifices and gifts to us, the very undeserving children of men! 

And I recently came upon a rather interesting poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that seem very appropriate for these confusing, uncertain and strife-filled times. It’s titled ‘Competition with God.’ Now doesn’t that stir up some puzzled and/or scary thoughts, leading us to think and ask, just how could we be in competition with God eh? Well here’s the substance of it all. (smile) 

Please read with me: ‘Often we must ask, what is my competition with God? When life seems to stand still, when my thoughts saunter through blind alleys, those very thoughts become my competition with God. When I embrace my personal desires instead of giving allegiance to God, desire becomes my competition with God. When I waste valuable time, ignoring God-assigned tasks, time becomes my competition with God. 

When personal possessions erase my concern for a desperately needy world, possession become my competition with God. If we allow a controversy in our lives, our praying may be with pretense, but it will not be with power. Walking the path of self-indulgence eventually leads to emptiness. Seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness leads to freedom and joy.’ 

Oh my people, I couldn’t have put it any better than that! And that’s why Jesus specifically spoke those awesome words. ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) But the truth of the matter is that we callously disregard His words, believing that we know better, and that we can make it happen in our own strength! No wonder our world is in such a shameful and confused state right now! With our every gain in knowledge and technology we become less comfortable and less believing in the Word of God and end up in foolish competition with Him. 

Friends, that’s a competition we can NEVER win because God is the Creator and we’re simply the frail and finite created. Please remember the archangel’s Lucifer (Bright Morning Star) fall from heaven when he foolishly tried to overthrow God. (Is. 14:12-16) That’s the same foolish path on which we’re now engaged, which the world is hell bent on treading, obviously with his satanic encouragement, because he’s now God’s adversary. 

But please, let’s stop for a moment and seriously consider the situation nuh. If the powerful archangel Lucifer, couldn’t overthrow God, how can we so much lesser mortals do it eh? No way! But we still allow him to keep egging us on, and he’s very persuasive, so we have to be real careful. My people, nobody knows better than his satanic majesty the overwhelming power of God, and he’s just trying to bring us down to his foolish level as a means of getting back at God. 

But please, please, I’m asking, no, pleading with us to rebuke him, and refuse to become a part of his most foolish and doomed to failure plan. Instead, let’s stand strong with God. Let’s stop being in competition with Him. Let’s allow our thoughts, our desires and our time to line up with His demands instead of our own. Let’s not allow controversy and self-indulgence to fill our lives with demonic thoughts, sentiments and behaviour, which only lead to even more confusion and condemnation and eventually emptiness. 

Remember how Bruh Paul put it to the church at Rome? ‘There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.’ (Rom. 8:1-2) What beautiful words and sentiments my brethren! It just assures us that when we walk with Jesus, in the law of His Spirit, we find freedom, but with the law of the flesh, the carnality of Satan’s world, all we find is sin and death; hellfire and damnation! 

And Jesus Himself made it abundantly clear when He told the hypocrite Pharisees, whom He called children of the devil. (John 8:44) ‘If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.’ (John 8:36) Mama Mia! Glory to God, for whom the Son sets free is indeed free and cannot be taken captive by Satan and his evil minions! What life changing sentiments my brethren! But we must take them to heart and consciously practice them in our earthly lives if they are to be helpful to us. 

And how do we do that? The Bible verse that’s the promise for our poem above, gives us this direction. ‘And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.’ (Is. 30:21) 

Yes precious saints of God, the Holy Spirit of Christ which indwells every believer is our guide and director. He tells us where to walk and where not to walk. But we have to listen to Him, pay serious attention to Him, because He usually speaks in a still, small voice. He doesn’t shout out often, so you have to develop the skill and a good listening ear if you want to walk the true and godly path you were destined to walk. 

And God said it to Joshua way back when He made him the leader of the Israelites after Moses’ death. ‘Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper withersoserver thou goest.’ (Josh. 1:7) And nothing has changed since then friends, walking in the way of the Lord is still the only sure way to have success or to act wisely. 

So with all of that in mind this fateful Tuesday in November, in this crazy and eccentric year of 2020, let’s go home now declaring (yeahh!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting all and sundry know who and whose we are. In strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘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!’  

Now let’s go out and do just that nuh; share His awesome LOVE with the world! Much LOVE!

…ONLY in Christ…can one find true freedom… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 September 2020 Matthew 8:10.

Matthew 8:10.     ​Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.

And on this bright Tuesday morning in late September of 2020, this turbulent and overwhelming year, I do hope friends that we are all bright and thankful and ever so grateful that we’ve made this morning’s wake up list! Glory Be! That means the Lord has more stuff for us to accomplish down here on this confusing and disaster filled earth, else He would have taken us home last night. 

Mama Mia! One of the best things we can do every day is to peruse the obituaries and give much thanks that our name doesn’t appear there. (smile) Oh, one day it will, but until then, we have a sacred responsibility to pursue, with diligence and excellence, whatever plan our Creator, Almighty God has purposed for our earthly lives! And one thing is for sure; our great and wonderful God NEVER gives us a task to do without the underlying anointing and grace to do it, and to do it properly too. 

That’s why we have to take the bull by the horns each and every day and work our work in His holy name. And though things will get difficult and heartbreaking at times, we cannot afford to sit down and let life pass us by, and then in our later years be filled with regrets and ‘I should haves.’ That’s why I believe these words of Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from His Hour of Power Devotional are so important and encouraging for us today. 

This devotion is titled ‘A Life of Regrets.’ And in it, Gramps Schuller says: ‘Suppose you have a great idea, but having surrendered to fear of failure, you let the golden opportunity pass you by. You remain safe from embarrassment but now you are bored. Boredom doesn’t build self-esteem. What does boredom do? It gives you loads of time to think, “It might have worked.” To quote John Greenleaf Whittier: “For of all sad words of tongue or pen, The saddest are these: “It might have been.” 

Yes friends, how often have we already said those sad words in our lives eh? Much too often, I believe. That’s why we can’t allow the fear of failure, or the embarrassment it often brings to keep us back from doing God’s great work! Here’s how Gramps Schuller characterizes it: ‘You grow old, collecting and nursing a multitude of regrets. Why didn’t I do this? Why didn’t I do that? Why didn’t I buy it when I had a chance? 

To further depress yourself, you may see someone else seizing the same opportunity. They are successful and you become jealous. The pangs of further jealousy will make you more bitter and inspire further negative thoughts and actions. Thus fear of failure does not protect your self respect – it prevents and aborts it. If you heed your fears you’ll die never knowing what a great person you might have been.’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my brethren? It surely is! When we let fear rule the roost, we abort whatever worthwhile job the Lord has tasked us with! And that certainly doesn’t do His kingdom, or us, any good! And that’s why the Good Book, the Lord’s Word constantly reminds to ‘FEAR NOT!’ No my people, if we want to be successful ambassadors of Christ, we cannot let fear be the uppermost factor in our lives. It has to be faith! One of Jesus’ favourite admonishments was, ‘O Ye of little faith!’ 

Remember his fateful words regarding the Roman Centurion who asked for healing for his servant, and when Christ wanted to go to his house, he said that it wasn’t necessary. ‘I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.’ (Matt. 8:8) Now back then that was indeed a big step for a Roman army leader. So much so, that ’When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.’ (Matt. 8:10) 

Now wasn’t that somewhat shameful, that a Roman soldier could show more faith than the Jews, the Chosen People of God, to whom Jesus was specifically sent to heal and to save? It surely was. But that’s how it was back then, and how it still is today. The ones we show special care and affection for are ofttimes the ones who show the least appreciation for it. But it never stopped Jesus from doing His God-given job, and neither should it stop us. We need to persevere and endure in the faith come what may. 

At the end of our time, our words ought to ring out as staunchly and faithfully as Bruh Paul’s last testament to Timothy. ‘For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure (death) is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that LOVE his appearing.’ (2 Tim. 4:6-8) 

Yes my people, those are words we ought to be able to say at the end of our lives because we have sincerely kept the faith and diligently ran the race that God had set out for us. And the only way we can do that is by hunkering down in the word, in prayer and actioning all that’s set before us with LOVE, grace, mercy, forgiveness, kindness, gentleness, etc. etc. In other words, living our lives truly led by the Holy Spirit and bearing its good fruit.

As Bruh Paul said to the Colossians: ‘Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and long-suffering with joyfulness. Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet (qualified us) to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in (the) light .’ (Col. 1:11-12) 

Yes precious people of God, persevering through problems and difficulties, and forbearing and forgiving the faults and offences of others is the cross we’re called to bear, just like Jesus did it for us. That’s spiritual understanding which produces the necessary morality and happiness, and how we live in the light of His LOVE!

Now let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting all and sundry know who and whose we are. In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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 now it’s time to put those words into godly action! Much LOVE!

…when fear comes a-calling…send faith to answer it… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 August 2020 Psalm 119:89-90.

Psalm 119:89-90.     ​Your word, O Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens. Your faithfulness continues through all generations: you established the earth, and it endures.
 

This Tuesday morning has opened somewhat dark and cloudy in my area, but the sun is valiantly trying to push through the dark, ominous looking clouds. How successful it will be though, is anyone’s guess. But I just want to remind us that despite the physical darkness or light of this world, we have a spiritual light that emanates from our magnificent Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ which NOTHING in this world can ever dim or darken! Wow! And all God’s children declared a loud, and grateful: ‘Glory Hallelujah! All praise and honour be to the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit!’ 

Yes friends, on those three omnipotent, omniscient and omni-present deities or God-heads, is where ALL of our praise, honour, thanks and glory ought to rest. And yuh won’t believe it nuh people, but I just went upstairs to reheat my caffeine, and lo and behold, was greeted by a brilliant burst of sunshine! The sun has actually won the battle! Just goes to show the awesome power of light over darkness! (smile) And what other encouraging words or news do we have to offer today? Well just this: ‘The Facts!’ 

Yeh bredrin, some awesome facts of life are what we’re talking about, as released in this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. So please pray with me: ‘Lord When I feel I can’t possibly make it When I feel deluged with problems When I feel helpless Against the strange twistings of life When I feel there is no way out The FACT is You have a plan You know what You’re about. The FACT is The greater the strategy of the Enemy The greater the assurance of victory. The FACT is The worst may seem to happen But the best is on the way. God, hold me to the facts.’ 

And it’s all so true my fellow saints in Christ! Whenever life seems to come against us, as the poem says so sweetly ‘the strange twistings of life,’ we need to remember that we have a heavenly Father who is the most powerful, most generous and most LOVING Being in this universe, who will not let anything evil overtake us! But the FACT is, that WE have to remember it and stand strong in His promise! And don’t worry, If we hold on to God, He will help us to hold on to the facts. The facts which are contained in these eternal words of truth, that are associated with today’s poem. 

Now I’m faced with a dilemma here: you all know I’m partial to my King James version of the Word, but the NIV, the New International Version used with the poem sounds good and somewhat more appropriate than the KJV. Steups! And I was just guided by the facts: share them both! Yeah! So here goes. The KJV says: ‘For ever, O Lord, thy word is settled (stands firm) in heaven. Thy faithful ness is unto all generations: thou hast established the earth, and it abideth (stands, endures). (Ps. 119:89-90) Now hear the NIV: ‘Your word, O Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens. Your faithfulness continues through all generations: you established the earth, and it endures.’ 

Yeh mih people, they say the same basic things but just in a slightly different fashion. And for today, I think I’ll use the NIV as our Bit. Now don’t get worried my purist friends, the KJV will always be our favourite, but sometimes we do need to use other resources. (smile) That brings us to this other powerful verse from Psalm 119. ‘Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.’ (Ps. 119:105) And that’s exactly what the Word was given to us for; to lead and guide us on this strange, twisting journey that we call life on earth! 

But we have to read it, study it, and then keep it, do as it says. Otherwise it is of absolutely no use to us. And that’s why so many of us supposed believers are not living the full and abundant lives that Christ sacrificed his sinless life for us to have: we don’t read, study, or put the Word into action, like we ought to. 

Oh fellow saints in Christ, the Word of the Lord is our most important asset and guide for earthly living. But we have to use it. Hear how Jesus describes it nuh. ‘Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.’ (Matt.24:35) Now that’s as simple and straightforward as it can get! Everything else may, and eventually shall pass away, but the Word of the Lord will endure forever! 

So why do we doubt the Word of God eh, and not put it to proper use in our lives eh? Because we’re proud and foolish and believe that we no longer need God in our lives, we can do it all on our own. But if we look closely at the state of our world right now we’d see that we cannot make it on our own, the problems of life are too big for our finite, puny minds and oversized egos! 

But please listen as Peter uses the words of Isaiah 40:6-8 to address us. ‘For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away. But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.’ (1 Pet.1:24-25) What more can I say eh friends? Not a whole lot. But just remember that one day we’ll all have to stand and answer for our deeds here on earth, and as Sun Rise says, we can’t take the big house, the big car and the plenty money with us to the grave, we have to leave them all here for others to use and abuse. (smile) 

So let’s go home now declaring… (brother, can’t spell that word right for LOVE nor money!) So let’s go home now declaring (yeahh!) our Tuesday Mantra telling the world who and whose we are, to whom we gloriously belong. All together now, in strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘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 the obvious corollary to all that is for us to now go out and share the wonderful LOVE, trust and friendship of Jesus that’s supposed to distinguish us from the rest of the world. Much LOVE!

…he who has ears to hear…let him hear… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 August 2020 Psalm 139:14a.

Psalm 139:14a.     ​I will praise thee: for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:
 

Well it looks like this summer Tuesday has begun on a rainy note. Wonder if we’re going to have a recurrence of yesterday with rotating rain and sunshine? It’s an interesting situation if you have nowhere to go or no weather restricting duties to perform. (smile) And thankfully I don’t have anywhere to go, or any weather restricting duties to perform… Chuh! I just remembered I have a church meeting to attend later, but that’s not until the evening time. So I should be fine with whatever happens during the day. 

And do we ever have some interesting facts apparently on ‘Wholeness’ to share with you this morning. And I say apparently because there is no title to the stuff on the piece of paper and no mention of where I got it from. I just found it in my ever-growing, untidy bits of paper with great info. (smile)  

And today’s info goes like this: ‘Your intelligence can guide the Life Energy in your body – I began to teach my body and got marvellous results. Speaking words of Strength and Power. Raise the life in every part of your body. Pray, asking for strength to think only kind, LOVING and sincere thoughts about your body. Release all thoughts of weakness or disease. In steadfast faith, praise and bless the life energy, the cells of your body and mind. Realize Wholeness!!! See Wholeness!!!’ 

That’s it friends! A teaching moment: one to raise your Life Energy and bring Wholeness to your body! But to grow in Wholeness, just like growing in spiritual faith, we have to not only talk the talk but also walk the walk. It won’t happen on its lonesome, but through our actions. So let’s begin teaching our bodies today nuh: releasing all negative thoughts of weakness and disease, while embracing wholesome ones of health in mind, body and soul. Yes, thinking only kind and LOVING thoughts about our wonderfully and marvellously made bodies!

 How did Bruh David put it in Psalm 139 – The everlasting presence and power of God? ‘For thou hast possessed my reins (formed my inward parts): thou hast covered me (weaved me) in my mother’s womb. I will praise thee: for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right (very) well).’ (Ps. 139:13-14) Yeh friends, the Lord made each one of us to be a unique and different individual! We didn’t roll off an assembly line, all one size or kind or whatever. But we each have different characteristics that line up right well with the specific plan God has for each individual. 

And the web site ‘What Christians want to know,’ per David Peach, says these very true and interesting things about verse 14 above. ‘Verse 14 praises God because God created the psalmist, as well as each one of us, in a wonderful way. God made us the way we are and for a specific purpose. When we understand that, then we can have peace that whatever ailments or perceived problems we have in life are there because God ordained them. Let’s look at some beautiful truths that we can learn from this short verse. 

While these truths apply to everyone, only people who have accepted Christ and have become a child of God can truly appreciate all the meaning in these verses. As you grow more in your Christian life you will probably enjoy this verse even more as you look back and see how the Lord has uniquely made you.  Are you completely happy with your body and mind? What about your mental health? Take comfort in knowing God has created you the way you are for a reason. You don’t have to feel undue pressure to be like other people because God didn’t make you like other people.’ 

And isn’t that an awesome truth! You were made ‘fearfully’ – with reverence and respect for God, and also ‘wonderfully’- distinct or unique, which means we have to be thankful and respectful to God for our bodies as well as look after them. For as Bruh Paul says in talking of purity among believers: ‘What? Know ye not that your body is a temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.’ (1 Cor. 6:19-20) 

Yes mih bredrin! We have been made in the spiritual image of God, so that means our bodies are very important since the Spirit of God lives within them. We don’t even belong to ourselves anymore because we have been bought by the Lord with the precious blood of His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and this ought to have profound significance for all believers. 

As Peter puts it in describing God’s own people: ‘ But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people (God’s own special people); that ye should show forth (proclaim, manifest) the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.’ (1 Pet. 2:9-10) 

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, we are indeed special; in body, soul, spirt and God’s individual as well as corporate plans! We have been sanctified, set aside for God’s special purpose to proclaim His sovereignty and thus we need to keep ourselves, bodies, souls, and minds as clean and healthy as possible, so that we can do the job to which we have been called in a diligent and excellent manner. That means right eating, enough sleep and exercise, right thinking, reading and meditating on the Word, and generally doing good and showing compassion like our leader and example Jesus did. (Acts 10:38) 

So let’s get all of that going on from today nuh, or improve it with God’s ever-available help. Now it’s time to go home, declaring (steups!) our Tuesday Mantra, boldly and confidently telling the world who and whose we are. In strong voice with sincere hearts:  ‘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 the natural consequence of such a bold statement is for us to now go out and share that wonderful and amazing LOVE and friendship of Jesus with those who don’t know or recognize Him as their Lord and Saviour! Much LOVE!

…it’s time to concentrate on wholeness…of body, soul and mind… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 July 2020 John 13:34.

John 13:34.     ​A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another.
 

Top o’ the morn my people! And wonderful greetings from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, who’s also our Comforter and Provider! And He’s asked me to convey these most faithful and worthy assurances this Tuesday morning at the end of July 2020, when our world is in a most turbulent and unrighteous state. ‘Fear Not: For, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ 

Wow! What reassuring sentiments from the One who sacrificed His sinless life on the cross at Calvary so that we could be reconciled to God, justified, sanctified, made righteous and all the other wonderful things His death and resurrection accomplished. Mama Mia! How can we not LOVE and honour, praise and reverence and sincerely worship such a mighty and faithful entity eh? 

That brings me to these momentous words of His to all who believe in Him. ‘A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:34-35) 

Oh my people, those words are ever so important on at least two levels. The first is that the attribute of LOVE, God’s highest, strongest and most pervasive attribute should also be very strong and pervasive amongst us. But then too, by us showing that wonderful thing called LOVE to each other, mankind will see and know that we are truly disciples of Jesus! 

Yes friends, our showing LOVE to each other is the surest way to point out, to manifest to the world, that we are real and true ambassadors of the Son of God; the One who’s name is above every other in the universe, except the Father’s, and to whom every knee must bow and every tongue confess that He is Lord to the glory of the Father. 

Unfortunately though, that attribute of LOVE is not being displayed enough amongst the supposed followers of Christ, much less amongst those who deny Him. And that’s why our world is in such a divided, disunited, strife-filled and topsy-turvy state! The LOVE of God is almost non-existent in our current society. But then how can we expect it to be when God Himself doesn’t hold much sway in it. He’s been placed on the back burner, or simply kicked out of many of our lives and activities. 

But the truth of the matter is that the LOVE of God is what’s so badly needed in our society to stop it from further crumbling and sinking right down into the evil mire that it’s currently headed towards at break-neck speed. But each of us supposed disciple must get up, get up NOW, and perform the actions of discipleship, particularly the showing of LOVE for each other if we’re to reclaim the world for our Lord and Saviour. 

Listen to these most informative words of Bruh Paul to the Thessalonians on the subject nuh. ‘But as touching (concerning) brotherly LOVE ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to LOVE one another. And indeed ye do it toward all the brethren which are in all Macedonia: but we beseech you, brethren, that ye increase more and more.’ (1 Thess. 4:9-10) 

Yeh friends, we’ve all been taught by God to LOVE, and many of us are trying our best to do it, but in these most trying and uncertain times, we desperately need to ratchet up that effort so that our world won’t fall apart. It’s as Jackie DeShannon’s popular song of some fifty five years ago, written by Hal David and Burt Bacharach, so rightly says: 

‘What the world needs now is LOVE, sweet LOVE. It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of. What the world needs now is LOVE, sweet LOVE. No not just for some, But for everyone.’ It was appropriate then when we were in the throes of the Vietnam War, and it’s ever so appropriate now when we are in the throes of a pandemic clothed with serious political strife. 

And John explains what the true test of knowledge, of discipleship is. ‘And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the LOVE of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him ought also to walk, even as he walked.’ (1 John 2:3-6) 

Yes my people, the only way to know if we truly LOVE God and He is in us, is if are walking in His will, keeping His commandments, of which the most important is that we walk in LOVE! So please, let’s check our LOVE walk nuh, and see if it can hold up to close scrutiny. And whether it can or cannot, let’s do as Bruh Paul asks, and improve it, with God’s help obviously. We all have room for improvement, that’s for sure! 

Now let’s; go home telling the world who and whose we are, as we declare (yeahhh!) our Tuesday Mantra. In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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 that’s what true discipleship is; trusting our friend Jesus and sharing His wonderful, amazing and unconditional LOVE with the world. So let’s show some true discipleship nuh! (smile) Much LOVE!

…LOVE… the ONLY epoxy…the only glue…that can hold our world together… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 July 2020 Hebrews 10:35.

Hebrews 10:35.     ​Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward.
 

And then it was a cloudy and uncertain Tuesday morning, just like the cloudy and uncertain Monday we had yesterday! But it’s oh so refreshing and wonderful when you don’t have to depend on the physical weather to get your sunshine; when you have the bright, amazing and beautiful light of Jesus and His everlasting salvation shining in your souls! Mama Mia! Yeh friends, you can tell that the ole fella is definitely glad to be alive to see another glorious day, be it physically rain or shine! It’s the only way to live this life! It also means that once we’re still here the Lord has big plans for us! Glory be! 

One person who’s no longer here with us though enjoying our earthly friendship is our ever-faithful church sister Mavis Harvey. Mavis died last week, thankfully with her family by her side, after being in poor health for a long time. But you would never have known it from her staunch and positive behaviour. She was the epitome of the sweet, quiet, godly, grandmotherly woman. Didn’t say much, but whatever she said had value. She was one of the few people who religiously attended our Wednesday morning service. 

And talk about stubborn! In the days before the church was shut down, Mavis, who lived a few blocks away and had some ambulatory problems, most always refused a ride to or from church unless the weather was real bad. She had her walker and that gave her exercise. She will always be remembered for her LOVING-kindness; baking stuff for the church, as well as knitting blankets and other baby stuff. It was good that our pastor, Father Jeff, was able to spend some time with her before she went home to glory. Our sincere condolences and prayers go out to her family. May your wonderful soul rest in peace Mavis, my sister. 

Ah friends, for more saints like Mavis in our church families, instead of the rango- tango, gossipy, resentful, petty cliques and divisions that seem to currently proliferate. Sometimes it makes one belief that the world is more inside the church body than outside, the way we behave so much like it. And especially in these tumultuous times when unity is so badly needed, it’s sad and sorrowful that we have such a divided and fractured church. 

But I firmly believe that these tumultuous times are instances that our great and mysterious God has allowed to come upon us partly for the purpose of bringing us together and showing the world that His people, Christ’s church are actually whom they claim to be; kind, LOVING, understanding, unified, helpful and godly folks, by actually doing Christ-like work amongst the poor, sick and needy. Yes, I know it’s a rather convoluted sentence, but full of truth, what I like to call a Bruh Paulian sentence. (smile) 

That’s why precious people of God, I’m here to encourage us, to exhort us to take a true and sincere stand in these uncertain and trying times to be salt of the earth and lights of the world like Jesus desires of us, so that we can rebuild, renovate, fix, make right, whatever is currently wrong with His church. Remember, actions speak much louder than words, and if ever there was a time that plenty action was needed from the church it’s right now! So let’s not faint and give up during this time of pandemic and strife nuh. 

Instead, let’s write this scripture indelibly in our hearts and action it with much vim and vigour. ‘Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience (endurance, perseverance), that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.’ (Heb.10:35-36) Yes friends, remember giving up is not in Christ’s vocabulary. And whosoever will endure to the end will receive a crown of glory. And even then, it’s not so much about the eventual reward nuh, but the fact that we LOVE and admire Jesus and all that He’s sacrificed for us and we just want to do His will as best we can. The eventual reward is just lagniappe, brawtha, icing on the cake. It’s not what should really move us. 

And I think this scripture from Peter is very useful for us in these non-understandable times. ‘But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent charity (LOVE) among yourselves: for charity (LOVE) shall cover a multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging (grumbling). As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles (utterances) of God; if any man minister. Let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet. 4:7-11) 

Oh friends, please remember that whatever we have, be it earthly wealth and power, or spiritual gifts they still belong to God, and we are only stewards down here on earth to ensure that they are well used and distributed. And please allow these words of Bruh Paul to sink deeply into our consciousness and truly live by them. ‘For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. 

For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office (function): So we being many, are one body in Christ, and every one (individually) members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith.’ (Rom. 12:3-6) 

Ah mih people, the long and short of the story is that through the grace, the generosity, the undeserved favour of God, we have all been given certain gifts in different areas, and we must use them diligently, without grumbling or greed, to effectively promote Christ’s church. That’s it in a nutshell! (smile) And there’s truly no better time for us to come together and do our thing (stir up the gift of God) than right now when the world is in such a state of confusion and we are the ONLY ones with the ONLY solution: Jesus Christ! 

Now let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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 do we ever need to share Jesus’ LOVE and friendship with this sad and sorrowful world! Much LOVE!

…in tough times…tough people…namely Christians…stand tough…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 June 2020 Isaiah 58:11.

Isaiah 58:11.     And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought (times of need), and make fat (strengthen) thy bones: and thou shalt be like a well-watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.
 

Oh my people, my people, finally, after about three or four months, the ole fella actually visited one of the Lord’s sanctuaries yesterday! Glory be! And was it ever good to put foot in a church again, although it was for a sad occasion, the funeral of one of our long-time friends, Herman George Gabay. And it was a fairly new Catholic church, so you know it was fine, (smile) but with all the new regulations, we could only sit in every other pew and not too close to anybody not family. 

And it was indeed strange to see the fifty people now allowed for public gatherings all spread out over the large church and all the tape and ribbon and signs to keep us safely separated from each other, plus everybody, even the priest and his helpers in masks. But I guess that’s the new normal now. So, hopefully, we’ll do it responsibly and thus not have to lockdown the society again. 

Anyway, my condolences go out to the Gabay Family. Herman was indeed a kind, friendly, quiet and generous man, and led a long and interesting life. And did he ever look beautiful and at peace lying there in his coffin yesterday in his off-white suit! (smile) He will be missed by all of us though. 

And I have one more set of condolences to send out to the Wilson family in Tobago, as I understand that the neighbour of my youth and big brother Neil also passed away recently. He was much older than me, but I can remember growing up and seeing him dressed in his B.W.I.A (British West Indian Airlines) uniform.

In my time that was a position to which many aspired. We were never bosom chums or anything like that, but whenever we met each other, he was always friendly. I haven’t seen him in many a year, and never knew that over the years, he had become such a stalwart in Tobago politics; Chairman of the PNM party Council in Tobago, as well as ‘the heartbeat of Tobago tourism.’ 

May you both Herman and Neil rest in peace in the arms of the Lord, because that’s where eternal rest and comfort are to be found. And that’s not only for the dear departed my friends, but even more so for the living, as the prophet Isaiah long ago declared: ‘Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God.’ (Is. 40:1) The prophet saw salvation and comfort in Israel’s future, and that has become even more firmly entrenched for us under the New Covenant with Jesus. 

And do we ever need comfort and consolation and assurance in these uncertain and trying times my brethren. We need all consuming faith so that we can stand strong and steadfast in the mighty purpose of God! And the minster at the funeral yesterday said he teaches the children that faith is the ability of our spiritual eyes to see beyond the short distance that our physical eyes can see. 

And that’s oh so true friends. If we can’t see figuratively far beyond the literal distance of our physical eyes, then there’s li’l or no chance for us. If we can’t see, feel and understand that our great God is ‘Always There’ for us, as described by this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, then we’re in sad trouble. 

Please pray with me: ‘So often, Lord I reach the bottom of the abyss. So often, I taste the dregs Of my own helplessness. Yet it is there, exactly there That You come to my immediate rescue. When I feel totally impoverished Of all self-sufficiency When I want to vanish into nowhere From the depths of despair I call Your name And You are always there for me!’ 

Now that’s the gospel truth friends! Our God is ALWAYS THERE for us – especially in the darkest times of our lives! All we have to do is call out to Him in true sincerity! And I know that these current times of worldwide sickness and strife are amongst the worst ever for many of us, that’s why I’m encouraging us, pleading with us, to call on the name of the Lord through our Saviour Jesus Christ, for He is the ONLY ONE, who can provide care, comfort, true wisdom and guidance and release from our earthly troubles! 

And when we read His Word, we see that He constantly and faithfully promises to look after us if we come to Him, like in this passage from Isaiah, that’s used as the Bible verse for today’s poem. ‘And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought (times of need), and make fat (strengthen) thy bones: and thou shalt be like a well-watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.’ (Is. 58:11) And the Lord does keep His promises, but He can’t help us until we come a calling on Him. That’s why faith, strong faith is absolutely necessary in these troubled times! 

And just in case you didn’t believe what Isaiah says above there, listen to him again with more substantial and faithful promises of our magnanimous and merciful God. (smile) ‘Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.’ (Is. 55:1) 

And the scholars explain thus: ‘55:1-7. God’s free gift of salvation is offered to all who will receive it. Those who are spiritually hungry and thirsty may come to eat and drink without money (or freely). He promises an everlasting covenant to the Gentiles like the one He established with Israel. His invitation to all men is clearly stated by the appeal, Seek ye the Lord and call ye upon him.’ 

Oh my people, the Lord has done all He can, right down to giving us the New Covenant though the sacrifice of His only begotten Son Jesus! Now it’s up to us to make use of all that He’s provided. And if we don’t, we can’t blame anyone else but ourselves, although nowadays we take great pleasure in playing the blame game! As they say, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. I can only lead you to Jesus, I can’t make you accept Him. But for those of us who have wisely done so, let’s go home now declaring {steups! – and I thought I was spelling it right oui – smile} our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. 

In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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!’ 

Now it’s time to seriously action those statements! Much LOVE!

…blessed…are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness…for they shall be filled…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 June 2020 2 Timothy 4:7.

2 Timothy 4:7.    ​I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith: 

And yes, it is a cool and cloudy Tuesday morning, and we are beset by all kinds of problems, individually, nationally and internationally, but friends that is no reason to fear and be anxious and lose our cool, our joy and peace in the Lord. Remember, the joy of the Lord is our strength, (Neh. 8:10) and that the bright and energizing light of Jesus is shining powerfully right now, in the hearts and souls of every person who considers Him their Lord and Saviour! That’s His faithful promise, and as believers, we desperately need to hold on to it in these rather turbulent and dangerous times or else all will fall down. 

My brethren, we were made for these tough times, therefore we have whatever it takes to handle them successfully and see them through to the very end. And today friends, I just want to encourage us, to lift up and strengthen our faith with some enabling scriptures on enduring. So let’s begin with the indisputable truth contained in the words of the psalmist in Psalm 102 – A cry in distress. ‘My days are like a shadow that declineth; and I am withered like grass. But thou, O Lord, shall endure for ever; and thy remembrance unto all generations. Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come.’ (Ps. 102:11-13) 

Yes faithful saints of Christ, our great God will endure forever and will shower us with His never ending mercy. So please let’s not be afraid as the end times are getting into full swing, and to the ordinary eye, definitely not looking very encouraging. And the psalmist further encourages us: ‘Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the work of thy hands. They shall perish, but thou shalt endure (continue forever): yea, all of them shall wax (grow) old like a garment; as a vesture (cloak) shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: But thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end. The children of thy servants shall continue, and their seed (descendants) shall be established before thee.’ (Ps. 102: 25-28) 

What a mighty promise my people! But as always, we need to believe it and hold on tightly to it, otherwise it’s of no consequence. Yes, our great God will endure forever, there’s no doubt about that, because he is the Creator and maintainer of this wonderful universe, that is now going through the throes of its death knell. But remember this unalterable truth from the author of Hebrews: ‘Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.’ (Heb. 13:8) Everything else has the capacity to and possibility of changing, except our Lord and Saviour, so let’s hold on to him nuh, and don’t give up or fear. 

For as Bruh Paul so famously and truthfully declared to the church at Rome: ‘Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?’ (Rom. 8:35) And the answer to that question friends, is a big, fat, loud ‘NOBODY!’ Yes indeed! And as Bruh Paul continues, quoting Ps. 44:22: ‘As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.’ (Rom. 8:36) 

And our enemies might consider us such, but Bruh Paul begs to differ. ‘Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height nor depth, nor any other creature, shall separate us from the LOVE of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ (Rom. 8:37-39) Now that’s how powerful the LOVE of our God is! 

And the scholars extend this wonderful and most encouraging explanation. ‘8:38-39. We cannot be separated from God’s LOVE, because it is set forth in a person who is God Himself, Jesus Christ, our Saviour. God’s desire to redeem believers cannot be frustrated, because He is infinitely greater than any potential enemy. His plan will be realized because it is His purpose (cf. vs. 28).’ And we all know quite well what Rom. 8:28 says. But for posterity’s sake (smile) we’ll record it here. ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.’ 

So having said all of those encouraging things above, let’s continue with some more scriptures on enduring and endurance. (smile) Hear this one, from Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘Thou therefore endure hardness (hardship), as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.’ (2 Tim. 2:3) Yes friends, we are all soldiers in the army of Christ and soldiers are expected to endure hardship, so let’s do it without too much complaining nuh. For as James says: ‘Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried (has been proved), he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that LOVE him.’ (James 1:12) 

Oh my people, our endurance and victory over trials brings God’s blessings. Thus we are not to always seek avenues of escape from our troubles, but rather to grow and mature in those tough situations! So that at the end, we can say with full confidence, like Bruh Paul. ‘For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that LOVE his appearing.’ (2 Tim.4:6-8) 

What else can I say eh friends? It’s all laid out for us, but we have to do our part and accept, believe it, and work diligently (work out our salvation) towards a glorious end! And for those of us who have sincerely and diligently accepted the challenge, let’s go home now declaring (yeahhh!) our Tuesday Mantra, valiantly proclaiming to an unbelieving world, who and whose we are! 

In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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!’ 

Now let’s get up action that proclamation nuh! It’s what Jesus desires of us! Much LOVE!

…NOW is the time…for Christians…to be the salt of the earth…and let their light shine forth… 

P.S. Yes it’s late, due to the usual late nights…or early mornings, but an ole dog can’t change his stripes in mid-stream mih friends, much less his latter days. (smile) Much LOVE!

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