Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 January 2021 Matthew 11:28.

Matthew 11:28.     ​Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Come all ye saints of Christ, come from far and wide, let us gather in the virtual reality of His tabernacle so that we can praise and worship Him, on this His special day! And all God’s children declared a loud and proud: ‘Praise the Lord God Almighty for His goodness to the children of men! Bless His holy name!’ 

Yes friends, it’s the Lord’s Day again, and that calls for celebration and exaltation, while seeking wisdom, guidance and encouragement for the next seven days. We can’t meet in person, but they certainly can’t stop us from meeting by technological means. So let’s fire up those pieces of technological wonder, as well as our hearts, souls, bodies and minds and open the proceedings with a soulful piece of worship written by Fernando Ortega, titled ‘Give Me Jesus.’ But we’re going to do the live, soulful rendition by Danny Gokey. 

Ah mih people, this song has become one of my favourites since I first heard it last year. And yuh know, earlier this past week, when I began thinking about what we’d sing today, that just flashed into my mind, and obviously it was game over! (smile) So let’s get with it; let our sacrifice of praise rise to high heaven as the black youngster on the rich sounding piano leads us into soulful, scintillating song. And please don’t forget the sweet background vocals from the diversified choir. 

‘Ohhh ohhh, Give me Jesus… In the morning, when I rise In the morning, when I rise In the morning, when I rise Give me Jesus. (Chorus: Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, Just give me Jesus.) When I am alone, Oh When I am alone, When I am alone, Give me Jesus. (Give me Jesus. Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, Just give me Jesus. For He is all that I need. Just give me Jesus) When I come to die, Oh, When I come to die, When I come to die, Give me Jesus. 

(Ohhhh Give me Jesus. Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, Just give me Jesus. Oh it’s all I need, all I need is Jesus. So Give me Jesus. Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, You can have all this world, You can have all this world, Just give me Jesus. Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus, He’s all I need. He’s all I need. 

Give me Jesus…in the morning when I rise…when I lay my head down… when I wake up, when I lay my head down, said I need him, said I need you… said I only want Jesus…when I wake up… Yeahh! Just give me Jesus. All I need is him. We worship you, we worship you, say we worship you Lord. You’re the answer to my prayers, you’re the calm in the storm, you’re my rest and my refuge…oh yeahhh…’ 

Yes mih bredrin, yes! Who says worship ain’t sweet and uplifting eh? Tell them they don’t know what they talking about, especially when yuh worshipping Jesus, our Lord and Saviour, the One who sacrificed His sinless life on the cross at Calvary to pay for our abominable sins and thus established reconciliation with our heavenly Father, our Creator and Provider! Wow! Worship must be sweet when yuh worshipping the Light of the World; the Way the Truth and the Life! How could it not be eh, when Jesus is ALL anyone ever needs! 

The song tells the gospel truth! In the morning when I rise, all I need to do is turn to Jesus, surrender my day to Him and He will lead and guide me in wisdom and truth. He is the answer to ALL our prayers, our calm in the storm, our refuge and strong tower. Then when I am alone, feeling lonely…oh mih people, NO ONE provides comfort like our Sacrificial Lamb, because He can empathize with our problems since He also experienced rejection, dejection, disappointment, ‘sufferation’ and all the negative things that this world throws at us. 

And there are no better, more comforting words in the Good Book than those of His Great Invitation. ‘Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt. 11:28-30) Now who in their right minds would ever want to turn down such an inviting and comforting invitation eh? A lot of people turn it down though. That means we have plenty people in our world who aren’t in their right minds. (smile) 

So while we’re here on earth, Jesus is ALL we need. And when we die, He’s still ALL we need because He’s our Saviour, who paid our sin debt in full, so that we can enter paradise with Him and enjoy eternal life. Brother! What a magnificent and magnanimous Deity is our Jesus: LOVING, merciful, compassionate, graceful, forgiving, faithful…etc. etc.! 

So why would we need anyone else in this life, or the hereafter eh? When we wake up, when go to sleep, when we need comfort, when we need forgiving, mercy, grace, compassion, strength to face the day, He’s the ONLY One who can provide it all! That’s why we can refuse ALL that this world has to offer, once we have JESUS! Keep the wealth and the power, the social and celebrity status of this evil world. We’ll settle for JESUS! 

And besides, He’s promised that if we put His Father and Him first, seek the kingdom of God and its righteousness, all that we need will be given to us, because the Father knows what we need, and He won’t let us go lacking anything! (Matt. 6:33) No wonder Bruh David could proclaim, and so too can we: ‘The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.’ (Ps.23:1) 

And even when it comes to earthly riches, who was the richest man ever eh? Solomon! The Lord made him that because he asked for wisdom and understanding to rule His people. So if the Lord thinks we need earthly wealth, He can also give us that, for He owns it ALL! So why bother with this wicked world and their worthless stuff eh? We can’t carry any of it with us. 

And anyway, where we saints are going we don’t need it, for heaven is richer and more priceless and beautiful than earth ever will be – mansions and streets paved with gold…and JESUS, our shining star! So let’s keep leaning on Him nuh, holding tightly to His hand, and when He comes knocking at the doors of our hearts, let’s open quickly and receive Him with a hearty ‘Welcome my Lord and Saviour! Welcome!’ Much LOVE!

…Jesus made us…saved us…and will look after us for ever…Glory be… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 January 2021 2 Timothy 2:3.

2 Timothy 2:3.     ​Thou therefore endure hardness (hardship), as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

The Lord’s Day is here again friends, so please let’s do what we ought to; gather in worship, to pray and give thanks, even though it may be technologically driven, due to the pandemic lockdown of our physical sanctuaries. Prayer and worship are the same, however they are done, although actual physical togetherness does lend it a special atmosphere. 

And since the times they are rather rough and unrelenting, with our Christian actions and beliefs becoming more important every day, I figured that today we’d sing a song sure to boost our awareness and reassure us of God’s continuing dependence on our earthly work. It’s a 19thcentury hymn with words written by Sabine Baring-Gould in 1865, and music composed by Arthur Sullivan in 1871. But it remains one of our popular hymns to this day. We’re talking about the ole favourite ‘Onward Christian Soldiers.’ 

And the website Godtube explains: ‘It was written to encourage Christians in their ongoing battles with temptations within themselves and the evil forces throughout the world.’ And oh my people, do we ever need encouragement right now, because the battles are certainly long and hard, but if we stand strong like good soldiers of Christ, we will eventually overcome. In fact, Christ has already won the victory, we just need to maintain it. So, let’s do as the author of Hebrews instructs us nuh: ‘By him (through Jesus) therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his name (openly confessing His name.’ (Heb. 13:15) 

And today we doing a Sally Anne (Salvation Army) processional rendition, for they have adopted it as their favoured processional. In full voice, and soldierly marching tone: ‘Onward, Christian soldiers, marching as to war, With the cross of Jesus going on before! Christ, the royal Master, leads against the foe; Forward into battle, see his banner go! (Refrain: Onward, Christian Soldiers, marching as to war. With the cross of Jesus going on before!) At the sign of triumph Satan’s host doth flee; On, then, Christian soldiers, on to victory! Hell’s foundations quiver at the shout of praise; Brothers, lift your voices, loud your anthems raise! 

[Refrain] Like a mighty army moves the church of God; Brothers, we are treading where the saints have trod; We are not divided; all one body we, One in hope and doctrine, one in charity. [Refrain] Onward, then, ye people, join our happy throng, Blend with ours your voices in the triumph song; Glory, laud, and honor, unto Christ the King; This thro’ countless ages men and angels sing. And so we sing: Onward, Christian soldiers, marching as to war, With the cross of Jesus going on before…With the cross of Jesus going on before…’ 

Yes friends, that was tough and strong, like real soldiers marching out to battle with Christ, our Field General, with His cross at the front of the battle line! And please believe that we are in a war, sometimes physical, but most of the time it’s spiritual. As Bruh Paul said to the Ephesians. ‘For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world (age), against spiritual (hosts of) wickedness in high places.’ (Eph. 6:12) 

Ah mih people, the enemy and his evil forces are all over the spiritual world trying to wrest us from the hands of Christ. And though they have some power, they have no real authority over us, unless we allow them to invade our space. But to successfully withstand the enemy, we need to do as Bruh Paul says: ‘Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.’ (Eph. 6:10) This spiritual war will last until Christ returns, therefore we need to be continuously and constantly strengthened by the Lord’s mighty power. 

And as soldiers we also need physical accessories. That means we also need to ‘Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.’ (Eph. 6:11) A sense of urgency is noted there my brethren, and it demands immediate attention. No good soldier would go into battle without armour, and we have God’s spiritual armour to fight this one and stand strong against the evil schemes of the enemy. 

In short, it consists of our loins girded about with truth, topped by the breastplate of righteousness, while our feet are comfortably shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace, and we are holding forth the shield of faith to reject the fiery arrows of the wicked enemy. On our heads lie the helmet of salvation, and in our strong right hands we wield the mighty sword of the Spirit, which is the word of our omnipotent God! (Eph. 6:14-17) 

Glory be mih brethren! What mighty armour we have! But despite the great armour, one more thing is essential, that’s prayer! We can’t win without prayer! Please let’s remember that, cause prayer is the lifeblood between the Father and us. (Eph. 6:18) However, now that we have the protection, we still need something else. And I guess you’re wondering what that is nuh? Oh fellow Christians, it’s the one thing that all soldiers ought to have: bravery! You can’t go into battle in a cowardly manner and expect to win. 

That’s why Bruh Paul warned Timothy, re the toughness needed to win our spiritual battle.‘Thou therefore endure hardness (hardship), as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be soldier.’ (2 Tim. 2:3-4) And that’s oh so true! Soldiers must be able to withstand tough times, and not get entangled in the affairs of the world, so they can give their all to the one who chose them. And in our case, that’s Jesus Christ. 

Oh friends, if there’s one thing we can’t say about our Leader, Lord and Saviour is that He was a weakling! He was strong like an ox; physically, emotionally and mentally. He had to be to withstand the ‘sufferation’ He endured on our behalf. Now are we going to cry and whimper when He needs us to stand strong on His behalf now, especially after He’s given us all the tools to do so? God forbid that we chicken out on Him now, although that’s what many of us are doing. 

This pandemic though is making a lot of people have second thoughts because they see that nothing we’re doing is working to stem the deadly tide, and God is the only avenue left to turn to. So there’s yet hope. Let’s build on that hope nuh my fellow saints and soldiers in Christ, starting today,RIGHT NOW! Let’s show the enemy that we have the parts, the backbone and belly to stand up as one, united, faithful, steadfast and strong for Christ!Much LOVE!

…none of us alone…is as good as…all of us together… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 November 2020 John 10:11.

John 10:11.     ​I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.

Oh friends, the Lord’s Day has rolled around once again, but sadly, this time His house, His sanctuary is desolate because of the Coronavirus lockdown. Thankfully though, that doesn’t mean He can’t bless us and make His face to shine upon us, because we’ll still be gathering to sing and praise and worship Him, though through virtual means, through the wonders of technology. 

And because of all the strife, confusion, upheaval and discontent that’s currently running rampant in our world, I decided that we needed a real thankful and joyful song to open our worship today, something to lift our spirits and remind us of our God’s goodness and LOVING-kindness. And I’m sure you’ll all agree that there could not be a better song than this one to do it. I’m talking about ‘Oh Happy Day!’ 

Yes mih people, up on point today is that 1967 gospel music arrangement by the Edwin Hawkins Singers of the 18thcentury hymn written by clergyman Philip Doddridge, which in the intervening years has certainly become a gospel music standard. Just check out YouTube and you’ll see the many different versions. And today we’re really going to get into it, giving it the full gospel treatment, with lots of hand clapping, the music rich and soulful and scintillating, with the tambourines jangling and the call and answer response right up front, for that’s what really lends the song its verve and chutzpah. (smile) 

So altogether now, in full voice, letting heaven know that we’re serious and sincere: ‘Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) When Jesus washed (When Jesus washed) Oh, when He washed (When Jesus washed) When Jesus washed (When Jesus washed) He washed my sins away (Oh, happy day) Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) (Repeat) 

He taught me how (He taught me how) To watch and fight and pray Watch and pray And live rejoicing every day Every day Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) When Jesus washed (When Jesus washed) Oh, when He washed (When Jesus washed) When Jesus washed (When Jesus washed) He washed my sins away (Oh, happy day) Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) 

He taught me how (He taught me how) To watch and fight and pray Watch and pray And live rejoicing every day (Good God) Every day Oh, happy day (Oh, happy day) Oh, it’s a happy day (Oh, happy day) Oh, Lord (Oh, happy day) Mmm, good God (Oh, happy day) Oh yeah (Oh, happy day) Mmm, oh (Oh, happy day).’ 

Yes mih bredrin, that was an awesome version! Heaven had no doubt that we were sincere! And this time, Jesus couldn’t just sit smiling shyly by the Father’s side…how could He when all heaven was dancing, singing and clapping too eh…including the Father? Jesus had to get up and do a li’l two step to acknowledge the praise and worship. And believe me precious people, Jesus deserves all of that adoration and reverence for the willing sacrifice; crucifixion on the old rugged cross at Calvary, that He made on our behalf! 

Wow! What a day it truly was when He washed our sins away, when He paid the Father’s steep price to cleanse and save us from hellfire and damnation! It was indeed the happiest day that mankind had ever experienced, and the best gift ever given to us after the Lord breathed His breath of life into our forefather Adam’s nostrils! As Jesus so rightly said of Himself: ‘I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.’ (John 10:11) And that’s exactly what He did; gave His life for us on the cross, so that we could be reconciled to the Father and live…live forever! Glory be people! 

How amazing and sacrificial is that eh! And hear Him later on nuh: ‘My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck (snatch) them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck (snatch) them out of my Father’s hand. I and my Father are one.’ (John 10:27-30) Mama Mia! What beautiful words of reassurance? 

And the scholars express it thus: ‘10:27-29. Never perish: These verses declare the assurance that all believers will be utterly safe from any creature that might wish to destroy them.’ Can any other faith sincerely promise that? Absolutely not! And what’s so great about Jesus is not that He just washed our sins away, but He also taught us to how to watch and fight and pray! Glory Hallelujah! What a giant He is! 

And to add to all that, He taught us how to live rejoicing every day too! So why wouldn’t we proud of Him eh? And revere and adore and worship Him; as well as call Him Lord and Saviour? No reason whatsoever to do otherwise my fellow saints in Christ! 

But unfortunately I have to muddy the waters here, cause not all of His followers walk the talk that they talk. Too many of us don’t watch and fight and pray, nor live rejoicing every day, although our sins have been washed away and we’ve been guaranteed eternal life. Now isn’t that a crying shame, because it just makes Jesus’ sacrifice of no account if we keep on living that joyless, ungodly life. Remember what He also said: ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10) That means we’re supposed to enjoy our earthly lives if we’re true believers, not live downtrodden and dismal existences. 

Oh my people, heaven begins here on earth if you’re a follower of Jesus, and we ought to be the happiest and most joyful group of people on the planet because of all that He’s done and promised to do in the future. So let’s get with the programme nuh, let’s change our attitudes, lift our heads and give God the glory through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, for that’s why He sacrificed His sinless life! Much LOVE!

…if you’re a true believer…then you ought to be joyful…for the joy of the Lord is your strength… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 November 2020 Psalm 107:8.

Psalm 107:8.     ​Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!

One more time, one more time, let’s do it one more time fellow saints of Christ! I mean, let’s get together on the Lord’s Day, by whatever means possible, and worship and praise His Holy Name as He desires of us on at least one day of every week! Yes my people, that is one of the duties for which we were created, along with the awesome blessing of having a close and personal relationship with the wise and wonderful Deity who created us. Glory to His blessed name, for there is no other supposed god who desires such a relationship with their followers as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob desires with His. 

So let’s cut out the talk and get down to some serious worship nuh. (smile) And today’s song is one I sent to some of you by WhatsApp this week, titled ‘The Goodness of God’ sung by Jenn Johnson with the Bethel church. So some of you know it. (smile) And after listening to several versions of the song, all of them decent enough in their own right, I still had to come back to the Jenn Johnson version because it had a particular soulful and yet rocking sound that seemed rather appropriate for the song. 

So without further ado, let’s raise our voices in sacrificial praise, offering up heartfelt and true emotion and sentiments to our majestic, magnanimous and magnificent God, Jehovah. In slow, soulful harmony to start, then breaking into a rocking, raunchy riddim at the chorus. ‘I love You Lord Oh Your mercy never fails me And all my days I’ve been held in Your hands From the moment that I wake up Until I lay my head down, Oh I will sing of the goodness of God (Chorus: All my life You have been faithful And All my life You have been so, so good. With every breath that I am able, Oh I will sing of the goodness of God.) 

I LOVE Your voice. You have led me through the fire. In my darkest night, You were close like no other. I’ve known You as a Father, I’ve known You as a friend, Oh I have lived, in the goodness of God. (Chorus: Yeahhh! And all my life You have been faithful…I will sing of the goodness of God) Yeah, yeah, it’s so good! Your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. With my life laid down, I’m surrendered now, I give You everything, cause Your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Ohhh, cause Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. 

With my life laid down, I’m surrendered now, I give You everything, cause Your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it keeps running after me. And All my life You have been faithful And All my life You have been so, so good With every breath that I am able, Oh I’m going to sing, Oh I’m going to sing of the goodness of God. For all my life You have been faithful, all my life You have been so good. 

Oh You lead me in glory…ever-faithful, You are my anchor in the wind and the waves… You are my provider…Oh yeah…and You lead me in glory by your spirit…You are my joy…my joy…every day…Oh shepherd of my soul…what a joy to know You…Oh, the joy of knowing You God…You’re everything to me…so wonderful…so wonderful in all your ways…in all your ways. That’s why I will always sing of Your goodness Lord…I will always sing of Your goodness Lord.’ 

Mama Mia! What a great paean (song of praise, worship, triumph, thanksgiving) to Almighty God, in which our voices were gloriously united! It couldn’t get any better than that my brethren, because the sentiments were all true! And today all we’re going to do is look at some scripture that gloriously display God’s wonderful works to the children of men! And that’s the superscript of Psalm 107, from which most, if not all of our scripture will come. Hear how the psalmist begins nuh: ‘O Give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy.’ (Ps. 107:1-2) 

The psalmist there was talking about the nation of Israel whom the Lord took out of bondage from Egypt, and because of their disobedience, they wandered in the wilderness, lost and without a shepherd, hungry and thirsty and faint. (Ps. 107:3-4) But eventually they smartened up, and ‘Then they cried unto the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them out of their distresses. And he led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city of habitation.’ (Ps. 107:6-7) 

Yeh friends, that’s the difference between obedience to God and disobedience. If we want to be left alone, He will leave us alone to do our own thing, but when we decide to call on Him in true and sincere repentance, He comes running to our aid. As the psalmist further states: ‘Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!’ (Ps. 107:8) What a glorious observation! Why, you ask? Hear the psalmist’s answer. ‘For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.’ (Ps. 107:9) 

Ah mih bredrin, when we come to God in repentance and submission, He looks after us. But when we turn away from Him, rebel against Him, He allows the evil one to cause us to ‘sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and iron (being prisoners);’ (Ps. 107:10) And when we wake up and cry out to Him again in times of trouble, He comes running and saves us out of our distresses. He brings us out of the darkness and the shadow of death, and breaks our bands in sunder (breaks our chains in pieces). And for that we should again praise Him for His goodness as our Bit says. (Ps. 107:11-16) 

Oh my people, we are so near and dear to the God of our forefathers that He can’t deny us when we turn to Him in true surrender. Look at what He did for the Israelites…and look at what He did for us by sending His Only Son Jesus to be sacrificed for our sins. That speaks of a golden heart of LOVE in the Being we call our God. And that’s why the psalmist’s cry makes undeniable sense: ‘Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing (joyful singing).’ (Ps. 107:21-22) 

And that’s what we’ve just done: declared His works with joyful singing! Glory be precious people! And we can go on through Psalm 107 and the rest of the Good Book and find innumerable reasons for praising God for His goodness. But time and space are against us. So let’s remember all those times that He’s bailed us out nuh, both individually and collectively, and stay under His protective umbrella, because that’s the ONLY safe place in this evil world! Much LOVE!

…the Lord is good…ALL THE TIME… because that’s His nature… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 October 2020 John 3:17.

John 3:17.     ​For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

Oh mih people, the time for praise and worship and ‘gatheration’ (smile) – if you can – has come around again, and we must not be found wanting in keeping the Lord’s Day holy as He desires, in whatever form and fashion we can. Good sentence eh? Bruh Paul would have been proud of it. (smile) The long and short of the story though is if we can go to church, let us go to church, and if we can’t, then let us get together through the radio, telephone, t.v., computer or however we can, for it’s important that Christians assemble, or congregate or worship together. 

Remember the words of Hebrews: ‘Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is: but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.’ (Heb. 10:25) And no, that doesn’t mean we can’t miss a church service here and there, but that it is important for us to gather so we can encourage and exhort each other to keep the faith, especially in tough and uncertain times like these. As the scholars tell us: ‘The church is a body interacting (1 Cor. 12:14-27); it is not merely a dispensary of spiritual food and medicine.’ Although that’s also a part of its job. (smile) 

So now that we’ve gathered on this Sabbath Day in late October of this watershed year of 2020, let’s do our best to encourage and exhort each other to stay the course with Jesus, difficult as it might be. And as always we going to begin the proceedings with a song of praise and worship, a li’l soulful ditty written by one Fernando Ortega, but today we’re doing a live soulful version by Danny Gokey. 

I first heard it last week when I asked the duchess for something to sing, and soon thereafter she sent me ‘Buried Alive’ by Buju Banton, which we sung last week, and this tune by Danny Gokey, which I told myself that we’d sing this week, and which I sent to some of you by what’s app. That means some of you already know it, so it won’t be hard to sing. (smile) And it’s strange that after listening to several different versions of the song, I came right back to this one because of its powerful, soulful and heart-rending appeal. 

So let’s all join together and raise our voices in harmonious, sincere, soulful, sacrificial praise, declaring the thing, the person, we desire most in this world. As the song says: ‘Give Me Jesus!’ Yes friends, He is definitely ALL we need in this world. Singing: ‘Ohhh ohhh, Give me Jesus… Give me Jesus… In the morning, when I rise In the morning, when I rise In the morning, when I rise Give me Jesus. (Chorus: Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, Just give me Jesus.) 

When I am alone, Oh When I am alone, When I am alone, Give me Jesus. (Give me Jesus. Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, Just give me Jesus. For He is all that I need. Just give me Jesus) When I come to die, Oh, When I come to die, When I come to die, Give me Jesus. Ohhhh Give me Jesus. Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, Just give me Jesus. Oh it’s all I need, all I need is Jesus. So Give me Jesus. Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, You can have all this world, You can have all this world, Just give me Jesus. Give me Jesus, Give me Jesus, He’s all I need. He’s all I need. 

Give me Jesus…in the morning when I rise…when I lay my head down… when I wake up, when I lay my head down, said I need him, said I need you… said I only want Jesus…when I wake up… Just give me Jesus. All I need is him. We worship you, we worship you, I say we worship you Lord. You’re the answer to my prayers, you’re the calm in the storm, you’re my rest and my refuge…oh yeahhh…’ 

Oh my brethren, that was indeed heart-rending. Jesus couldn’t doubt the sincerity of our plea to have Him in our lives. And why wouldn’t we desire Him when He’s so omnipotent and compassionate and LOVING eh? Let’s look at a few scriptures that paint that wonderful picture. To begin with, John tells us that Jesus was the Word, and that He was with God from the beginning. Then He was made flesh to come into this world to bring light to us poor sinners who were living in darkness, but who unfortunately did not understand the light. (John 1:1-5) 

‘That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.’ (John 1:9) And Jesus Himself corroborated that truth when He told His doubting listeners: ‘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) That just goes to show Jesus’ amazing power. As a part of the Godhead, the Holy Trinity, how can we not be drawn to Him eh? 

And then what greater LOVE could He show than coming to earth to sacrifice His sinless life to save us from the fires of hell eh? Hear Him: ‘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) Now why would He do such a thing if He didn’t care deeply and dearly for us eh? It’s all about LOVE, my people, that outstanding characteristic the Lord holds for His creation, mankind. And Jesus puts it in a nutshell. ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh to the Father, but by me.’ (John 14:6) Yeh people, the only way one can receive salvation is through Jesus Christ! NO OTHER WAY! 

And hear how Bruh Paul puts it to the church at Rome nuh. ‘For as by one man’s disobedience (Adam) many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.’ (Rom. 5:19) And that ONE is Jesus! The ONE who died on the cross to pay for our sins! So why wouldn’t we want Him eh, why wouldn’t He be our FIRST and ONLY choice eh, when He’s done so much for us, done what no one else could ever do? 

And when yuh talking about ‘sufferation’ on our behalf, nobody did it like Jesus. Look at what He bore so that we could be set free. As Hebrews says: ‘For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (sympathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (our weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.’ (Heb. 4:15) That’s why He can be our Comforter and Intercessor friends! He was tempted and suffered just like us, so He fully understands what we’re going through. 

And we’ll end with these immortal words of Bruh Paul to the Philippians. ‘Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name; That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of (those) things in heaven, and (those) things in earth, and (those) things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.’ (Phil. 2:5-11) 

And if all of that doesn’t convince you that Christ is ALL you need in this world, then I don’t know what will nuh! Much LOVE!

…Christ is our…High Priest…Lord…Saviour…King…Comforter…Intercessor…our EVERYTHING… 

P.S. Yes, it’s long, but justifiably so. (smile)  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 September 2020 Psalm 34:18.

Psalm 34:18.     ​The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart, and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit (crushed in spirit).

The Lord’s day, the Lord’s Day, it’s here mih bredrin! But sadly, we not breaking down the doors of His sanctuary to gather together in worship, as there are still restrictions and many people are still anxious about darkening the church doors for fear of the Covid-19 virus. But as Bruh Paul said to the church at Rome: ‘nothing can separate us from the LOVE of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ (Rom. 8:30) And that’s the gospel truth! So though all of us can’t gather to worship as we desire, there are ways for all of us to worship, if we so desire. (smile) 

And today in our song of praise, one a friend recently acquainted me with, and from the time I heard it, I knew we had to sing it this Sunday. (smile) Thanks friends, for all the good and useful stuff you all send me through WhatsApp. And today we slowing it down, we going soulful, getting it straight from the heart in a contemporary Christian song by Jamaican gospel singer Judith Gayle, titled ‘Stay with God!’ And if that isn’t the best news in the world, then I don’t know what is nuh! So in strong and soulful voice, with sweet harmony, let’s raise our sacrifice of praise to high heaven, pouring out our hearts in utter sincerity. 

‘I know the mountains get so high sometimes I know the valley seems so wide It seems this journey, it will never end, And you keep asking the question: God why? I know the road it gets so rocky at times Ahhh, I know the heartaches are severe Oh, It seems like life will never change its tide But there’s an answer to all of life’s cares. (Chorus: Stay with God In spite of what you see or feel Stay with God In spite of how things may appear Come on, Stay with God It doesn’t matter what may come our way There is only one place we are safe Stay with God.) 

I know the way you feel says give up now I know you feel you can’t hold on You’re not the only one who is carrying your load Remember He said to cast all your cares on Him. I know you cry and tell everyone you meet Because you feel that will ease the pain But if you just believe your life is in God’s hands Then today I tell you your mountains have to disappear. (Chorus – twice) Ooh yeah You got life in Him There is hope in Him There’s a bright future Just stay with him yeah just stay with him yeah Oh he’ll never leave you He’ll never never forsake you no 

Just cast all your cares upon Him Don’t give up now Don’t give in no Whatever may come your way God is always there, Stay with God In spite of what you see or feel Stay with God In spite of how things may appear Stay with God It doesn’t matter what may come our way There is only one place we are safe Come on, Stay with God Stay with Jesus Stay with Jesus Stay with God Eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God yeah Stay with God…Stay with Jesus…Stay with God…right until the end…Stay with God…’ 

Oh friends, those are the most truthful and encouraging words you can ever say to another human being! Why? Because there’s only ONE place in this world where you can be sure of safety and comfort and care: in the LOVING and comforting arms of Jehovah God, that’s under the rock that’s higher than we are and thus safer too. The Lord God Almighty is the answer to ALL of life’s cares. 

He’s invited you to come to Him and be relieved of your burdens through His Great Invitation. (Matt. 11:28-30) He’s also told you to cast all your cares on Him because He cares for you. (1 Pet. 5:7) He’s also promised ‘never to leave nor forsake you.’ (Heb. 13:5) And when you endure to the end with Him, there’s a bright and glorious future in store for you, with a crown of righteousness and magnificent heavenly rewards. 

But friends, to be able to do all of that successfully, you must give your life over to God, surrender your life to Him, and then spend time in prayer, or conversation with Him, while reading and meditating on His holy word with obedience to it a priority. There also needs to be humility of spirit, no false human pride, and a contrite heart. 

Isaiah puts it this way. ‘For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy, I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.’ (Is, 57:15) And Bruh David said it twice. In Psalm 34 – The Lord hears the righteous – he proclaims: ‘The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart, and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit (crushed in spirit).’ (Ps. 34:18) 

And then in that powerful psalm 51 – A prayer for cleansing – when he finally admits to his sins with Bathsheba, after the prophet Nathan drapes him up, Bruh David declares (awright!): ‘Oh Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall show forth thy praise. For thou desirest not sacrifice; else I would give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.’ (Ps. 51:15-17) 

Yes friends, those are some of the basic ways we ‘Stay with God.’ And please remember, it is not a one time, one and done thing, but it has to be a constant affair, for staying with God means you are always around Him, and He is always around you. It’s a life relationship; even till after death. In fact, eternity is the time when it gets real good! (smile) So on this last Sunday in September, of this crazy and tumultuous year of 2020, when the worse possibly hasn’t happened as yet, let’s remember that the best way to face life is to ‘Stay with God!’ Much LOVE!

…doing life with God…that’s the ONLY sensible way to go about it… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 May 2020 Acts 1:5.

Acts 1:5.    ​For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

Come on mih bredrin, it’s Sunday, the Lord’s Day, time for worship, although we’re still not allowed to gather physically to sing and praise and worship our great and wonderful God! But the miraculous strides we’ve made in technology enable us to gather nonetheless, regardless of time and through space. (smile) And if it’s one thing we know for sure, is that this too must pass! 

But enough talking, today we celebrating one of the great days in our faith, the day when our church was born, the Day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit was noised abroad upon the believers in Jerusalem; the day the awesome prophecy of the prophet Joel was fulfilled. ‘And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.’ (Joel 2:28) 

What a marvellous and miraculous day that was my people, probably only bested in the New Testament by Christ’s Birth and His Resurrection. But it was just the beginning… the beginning of times and things to come, which Christ’s birth stirred up. Anyway, let’s open the proceedings as always, with a song of praise. And today’s song is ever so appropriate to the celebration. It’s a rocking Reggae tune written by Noel Willis and performed by a Jamaican group called the Grace Thrillers, and the tune is aptly titled: ‘The Holy Ghost Power!’ 

Wow! And we all know the enormous power the Holy Ghost possesses. So let’s get rocking in soulful harmony and let heaven know that we’re ever so thankful for the gift of the Holy Spirit. Please ignore the Repeats, otherwise we’d be here singing all day long. (smile) All together now: ‘The Holy Ghost power movin’ just like a magnet The Holy Ghost power movin’ just like a magnet Movin’ here, movin’ there, just like the day of Pentecost The Holy Ghost power movin’ just like a magnet. (Repeat) Welcome, welcome, welcome Blessed Holy Ghost, we welcome you Come with power and fill our temple Holy Ghost, we welcome you (Repeat) 

Fire, fire, fire When my soul caught fire When my soul caught fire When my soul caught fire It burnt out carnal nature Hallelujah what a Saviour When my soul, when my soul When my soul caught fire (Repeat) Fire, fire, fire, fire will fall on me Fire, fire, fire, fire will fall on me Just like the day of Pentecost Fire will fall on me Just like the day of Pentecost Fire will fall on me (Repeat) It’s coming down, down, down It’s coming down When the glory of the Lord is coming down When the saints begin to pray And the Lord shall have His way When the glory of the Lord is coming down (Repeat) 

Blessed Holy Ghost come down, fall on Zion Blessed Holy Ghost come down, fall on Zion If you call at midnight, Jesus hears and He answers If you call at midnight the Holy Ghost sets your soul on fire The inspiration from the preacher, sent the sinner to the altar Sets your soul on fire Blessed Holy Ghost come down, fall on Zion (Repeat) Oh, let the power fall on me, my Lord Let the power fall on me Oh, let the power from heaven, fall on me Let the power fall on me Let the power fall on me Let the power fall on me… Power, power, power, power, power Power, power, power, power, let the power fall on me fall on me… 

I feel like the fire shut up in my bones (fire, fire) I feel like the fire shut up in my bones (fire, fire) Singing Glory, Hallelujah, oh yes I feel like the fire shut up in my bones, ooh… Send some more Elijah to pray the power down (Amen) Send the fire, also send the rain To heal the sick, raise the dead and glorify His name I would like to hear Elijah pray again (More Elijah, more Elijah) Send some more Elijah to pray the power down (More Elijah, more Elijah, more Elijah, more Elijah) 

The Holy Ghost power is movin’ just like a magnet (movin’, movin’) The Holy Ghost power is movin’ just like a magnet (movin’, movin’, movin’) Movin’ here, movin’ there, just like the day of Pentecost The Holy Ghost power is movin’ just like a magnet (movin’, movin’, movin’) just like the day of Pentecost The Holy Ghost power is movin’ just like a magnet (movin’, movin’, movin’) 

Oh mih people, mih people, what a rocking rendition! After the first few bars, all of heaven was rocking and dancing with us! You can’t celebrate the Holy Ghost and heaven not participate, for He is indeed One of the Holy Triumvirate; the One who looks after us, comforts and guides us all down here on earth. And it’s so sad that so many in our world don’t believe in our ever-faithful God, for this day was also promised by Jesus to His disciples before He ascended to heaven. ‘For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.’ 

That’s why Jesus told them shortly before to remain in Jerusalem ‘but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.’ (Acts 1:4b) He is referring to His promise: ‘And if you LOVE me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.’ (John 14:15-16) Jesus Himself couldn’t stay with them in person, but when He went back to heaven the Father would send a spiritual replacement to be with them forever. And though we read about the coming of the Holy Spirit every year at Pentecost, it’s such a remarkable story that it keeps turning us on every time we read it. 

Please note though that Pentecost was already a feast day of the Jewish Passover, so the day the Holy Spirit began living in believer’s hearts was not the first day of Pentecost. Now hear how the Good Book details it nuh. ‘And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord (one purpose in mind) in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:1-4) 

The mighty hand of God moved friends… and not in no simple minuscule way, but with power; with wind and fire! Thus all the people who had come to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover heard the Holy Ghost baptized brethren speak to them in their own native language, which obviously surprised them, mere uneducated Galileans speaking so many different languages…they must be drunk. But big Peter got up and made the speech of his life, giving them the true story. Time and space preclude us from telling it, but you can certainly read it for yourself.  (Acts 2:14-42) 

And yuh know what happened at the end of that most memorable day my bredrin? Three thousand people were saved…! Yes, the church grew by three thousand in that first day… And how could we not LOVE and glorify, and adore and revere our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, who sacrificed everything for us eh? Think on it nuh friends…just think on it nuh! Much LOVE!

…the Holy Ghost power…the most powerful force in a believer’s life…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 April 2020 Matthew 28:19.

Matthew 28:19.    Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples of) all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 
 

Aye mih bredrin, we’re back to Sunday, the Lord’s Day, and we still don’t have the option to fellowship together in the Lord’s sanctuary because of the social distancing business, but that’s never stopped us before, and believe me, it won’t stop us today either because we have technology! Technology, the wizardry that allows us to communicate live and in person across major distances, so though we can’t hug and kiss and shake hands, we can still celebrate the Lord’s Day with thanks and praise and reading of His Word and getting His assurance and confidence to successfully handle our difficult circumstances. 

I don’t know how our forefathers managed during their time of plagues and pandemic problems. But they still managed to hand down the gospel to us. Yet we, with all our technology, can’t get it into our children’s heads. But that’s another story for another day. So let’s get to some praise and worship to open the proceedings. And today’s song is of the contemporary Christian genre, titled ‘I’m just a Nobody.’ 

Now there seems to be at least two versions, each with different lyrics in the verses, one a soulful version by the Williams Brothers, but we’re going to follow the Casting Crowns version featuring Matthew West; a rocking, raunchy, good times one, with lots of clapping, dancing, and of course singing! (smile) We’ll begin with some hand clapping, in three fourths time, then sing the first line of the chorus three times acapella, then get into the full chorus as the music comes up. So here goes: clap, clap: ‘I’m just a nobody…clap, clap: I’m just a nobody…clap, clap: I’m just a nobody…’ and then music and everybody going crazy! 

‘Chorus: I’m just a nobody, trying to tell everybody, all about Somebody, who saved my soul. Ever since You rescued me, You gave my heart a song to sing. I’m living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus! I’m living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus!)  Why you ever chose me, has always been a mystery. All my life, I’ve been told I belong, at the end of the line. With all the other “Not Quites” with all the “Never-Get-it Rights” But it turns out, they’re the ones you’ve been looking for all this time, (Chorus:  Cause I’m just a nobody… living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus!) 

Moses had stage fright, and David brought a rock to a sword fight, You picked twelve outsiders, nobody would have ever chosen, and you changed the world. Well the moral of the story is, Everybody’s got a purpose. So when I hear that devil start talking to me saying, “Who do you think you are?” (Chorus: I say, I’m just a nobody… living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus!) So let me go down, down, down in history, as another blood-bought faithful member of the family. And if they all forget my name, well, that’s fine with me. I’m living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus… 

So let me go down, down, down in history, as another blood-bought faithful member of the family…That’s all I ever want to be… And if they all forget my name, well, that’s fine with me. I’m living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus… Cause I’m just a nobody, trying to tell everybody, all about Somebody, who saved my soul. Ever since You rescued me, You gave my heart a song to sing. I’m living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus! I’m living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus! I’m living for the world to see…Nobody but Jesus!’ 

Oh yes friends, that was indeed a happily sung ditty; one of hope, faith and rejoicing! And I like what one web site says about the song: ‘The lyrics describe how God uses ordinary people to spread the Gospel of Jesus! We are all flawed, yet the Lord has a purpose for us. In our joy of having been forgiven, we excitedly point to the forgiver, Jesus Christ!’ And all God’s people said a loud and grateful ‘Amen!’ And that’s indeed our main purpose in this life my brethren; to ‘excitedly point to the forgiver;’ to spread the gospel of Christ with unyielding zest and holy enthusiasm. 

As Jesus declared to His disciples: ‘All power (authority) is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples of) all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt. 28:18-20) And that my people is what we refer to as ‘the Great Commission!’ And moreover, against all odds, the disciples were indeed able to do that seemingly impossible task; twelve poor, uneducated men charged with proselytizing the entire world! 

And they certainly laid a good foundation for us to further build onLet’s not forget that we are Christ’s arms, legs, head, hands and body in this dark and sinful world, and that He’s depending on us to show the lost the light of His gospel and lead them to Him so they can be saved; forgiven, granted salvation through grace, which leads to eternal life. Remember Jesus memorable words about why He came into the world: ‘For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.’ (Matt.18:11) And that philosophy hasn’t changed down through the ages friends, which means we still need to show interest in and help those lost in the darkness of Satan’s world. 

Jesus also made His Father’s intentions quite clear in these momentous and memorable words that we all know: ‘For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him, should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.’ (John 3:16-17) 

Let’s remember that this Sunday friends, as we are unable to worship in physical proximity, and realize in that sense, we are still the lost, and that we still need saving from the Coronavirus, and that Jesus is the ONLY ONE who can do it! Much LOVE!

…without Jesus…we’re all hopelessly lost…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 March 2020 Psalm 40:5.

Psalm 40:5.    ​Many, O Lord my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up (recounted) in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.
 
Well since the physical church is closed because of the Covid-19 scare, and we can’t gather together in physical worship, it looks like our li’l service here on the Bit has become even more important. (smile) But we can’t allow the Lord’s Day to pass without some form of praise and worship and hearing of His marvellous and life-giving Word. So let’s have church, and we’ll begin with a most appropriate song of praise in these tumultuous, disastrous, scary and panicky times. 

It’s an old favourite written by Johnson Oatman Jr. (1856-1922), a New Jersey born and bred, pastor/cum businessman. The story goes that ‘his father was an excellent singer, and it always delighted the son to sit by his side and hear him sings songs of the church.’ And no doubt that was a most important factor in the young Oatman eventually writing over three thousand hymns; ‘so that no gospel song book is considered as being complete unless it contains some of his hymns.’ 

Wow! Over three thousand hymns! And I looked at a partial list and there are a few well known ones. And that’s just another example of how important it is to get the Lord and His Word into our children at an early age if we want them to grow right. And all God’s children said a loud ‘Amen!’ (smile) But enough suspense, the name of today’s praise song is ‘Count Your Blessings!’ And oh, if many more of us would just do that, our hope, our faith and our world would be so much less wishy-washy, evil and strife-filled! 

But let’s concentrate on the singing nuh. Therefore, as one strong, harmonious, soulful and sincere voice, let’s raise our sacrifice of praise to heaven, letting them know that we are indeed grateful for ALL our blessings, those we enjoy down here on earth, and those stored in heaven. ‘When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed, When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost, Count your many blessings, name them one by one, And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done. (Refrain: Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your blessings, see what God hath done; Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.) 

Are you ever burdened with a load of care? Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear? Count your many blessings, ev’ry doubt will fly, And you will be singing as the days go by. [Refrain] When you look at others with their lands and gold, Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold; Count your many blessings, money cannot buy Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high. [Refrain] So, amid the conflict, whether great or small, Do not be discouraged, God is over all; Count your many blessings, angels will attend, Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end. [Refrain] 2’ 

Oh my people, if we’d only stop a moment when times are rough, like they are now with the Corona virus, and count the many blessings with which we have been bestowed over the years of walking with Christ, as I said earlier, we won’t be as scared and panicked as we are. Yes, we will be concerned, but not thinking the worse! And I have some interesting words to share on the subject. First off, the basic meaning of Count Your Blessings. One dictionary puts it thus: ‘to be grateful for the good things in your life, often to stop yourself from becoming too unhappy about the bad things.’  

And is that ever so true; just like we ought to be doing right now so we can stop thinking about the bad things that are currently happening. Now hear this quote from the renowned African American Educator and Adviser, Author and Orator, Booker T Washington (1856-1915). ‘Those who are the happiest are those who do the most for others.’ And if you’re a true believer, then you know that’s gospel truth! Then there’s this from somebody, I’m not sure whom, (smile) but it certainly hits the nail on the head. ‘If you always find yourself numbering your troubles, you will never find time counting your blessings. There is no use becoming frustrated in your difficulties while you have all opportunities hiding in them for a turnover.’

 Oh friends, it’s time to stop counting our troubles and count our blessings instead, for within those same troubles are opportunities for us to overcome the troubles! And this last quote from the web site godtube. ‘God truly gives us so many blessings each and every single day. Some may even be so small that we might overlook them. The classic hymn ‘Count Your Blessings’ truly reminds us to stop and give thanks for all God has done in our lives. This is definitely a pause we all need to take. Amen.’ I couldn’t have put it any better my faithful brethren. 

And we find Bruh David doing it way back when in Psalm 40 – Praise for answered prayer, as he sincerely declares: ‘Many, O Lord my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up (recounted) in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.’ How true my fellow believers. But sadly, we pay more attention to the problems rather than the blessings, that’s why our souls are always in so much turmoil. 

And please remember Bruh Paul’s marvellous words to the Ephesians re Spiritual blessings in Christ. ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.’ (Eph. 1:3) Yes friends, lots of spiritual blessings have been granted to us when we became believers, but are stored up in heaven and are ‘being progressively dispersed to us on earth in accord with our need and Christian growth.’ 

And we’ll end, most appropriately with these wonderful words of warning and encouragement from Bruh David from Psalm 103 – Thanksgiving for God’s mercy. ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits…’ (Ps.103:2) Then he goes on to list a whole lot of benefits we enjoy when we walk with Jehovah God through His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Oh friends, hopefully, today we’ll take these words seriously and diligently ponder them as we take account of our lives. Much LOVE!

…wisdom wisely cries out…count your blessings…not your troubles…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 March 2020 Revelation 21:6.

Revelation 21:6.    ​It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst (who thirsts) of the fountain of the water of life freely.
 
Well it will be good to darken the church doors once again today, after a two week hiatus. Watching service on the tube is fine, but definitely not the same as actually being there in body and soul. The former lacks the personal touch where fellowship is concerned. And since I am an 18th century man, the technological aspect with television worship doesn’t thrill me as much as the personal interaction in a physical sanctuary. (smile) But be that as it may, it’s Sunday, the Lord’s Day, and we all ought to find our way to His sanctuary sometime today to personally interact with fellow believers to praise and sing and worship Him and receive the awesome power of His Word in return. 

What a moving time that can be in a believer’s life, bringing him ever closer in His relationship to His Lord and His God! So let’s begin the proceedings as usual with a song of praise and worship. And today’s sacrifice of praise is an old but highly favoured one by the master of hymn writers, Charles Wesley, titled ‘LOVE Divine All LOVES Excelling.’ We all know it so let’s get serious and soulful, and in strong, harmonious and melodious voice (smile) offer up our song of praise. 

‘LOVE divine, all LOVES excelling, joy of heav’n, to earth come down, fix in us Thy humble dwelling; all Thy faithful mercies crown. Jesus, Thou art all compassion; pure, unbounded LOVE Thou art; visit us with Thy salvation; enter ev’ry trembling heart. Breathe, O breathe Thy LOVING Spirit into ev’ry troubled breast! Let us all in Thee inherit; let us find the promised rest. Take away the LOVE of sinning; Alpha and Omega be; end of faith, as its beginning, set our hearts at liberty. 

Come, Almighty, to deliver; let us all Thy life receive; suddenly return and never, nevermore Thy temples leave. Thee we would be always blessing, serve Thee as Thy hosts above, pray and praise Thee without ceasing, glory in Thy perfect LOVE. Finish then Thy new creation; pure and spotless let us be. Let us see Thy great salvation perfectly restored in Thee. Changed from glory into glory, till in heav’n we take our place, till we cast our crowns before Thee, lost in wonder, LOVE, and praise.’ 

Oh friends, that was indeed a great rendition and heaven received it with great joy. Jesus, as always, blushes when we sing His praise, the Father smiles, and the Holy Spirit is the One working so astutely in us to get us singing with the right motives. And the song itself is like a compendium of Biblical quotes and attributes to our Three in One Godhead. Let’s see if we can pick out a few of each. It opens with Jesus being referred to as the ‘expression of divine LOVE.’ Then it talks about His compassion, His salvation, and the urgent need for His Second Coming so that our change to a new creation can be completed, and at last be sinless and finding the promised rest in Him. 

That possibly alludes to Jesus Great Invitation in Matt. 11:28. ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.’ The new creation obviously refers to Bruh Paul’s words to the Corinthians. ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (creation): old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.’ (2 Cor. 5:17) Yes friends, when we come to Christ we have to become new, changed, and give up some of the old things in our lives which don’t fit into Christ’s will. 

Then the Holy Spirit is cast as ‘the agent of sanctification,’ in the second verse. And the Father, the ‘source of life’ in the third verse. Meanwhile the casting of the crowns before God’s throne comes from Revelation 4:10-11 ‘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 down before the throne, saying, Thou art worthy, O lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for your pleasure they are and were created (for your will and pleasure they exist.’ And isn’t that the living truth! The Lord created the universe and all therein for His pleasure and purpose! 

So then we are gradually changed from glory to glory: ‘But we all, with open (unveiled) face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.’ (2 Cor. 3:18) ‘The believer himself “reflects” the glory of the Lord, just as the face of Moses reflected the glory of the Lord. For Moses the glory eventually faded away, but under the New Covenant  the believer is changed into the same image. This transformation takes place by the abiding presence of the Spirit of God.’ 

And then we come to Alpha and Omega. As Christ says to John in Revelation: ‘It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst (who thirsts) of the fountain of the water of life freely. He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. But the fearful (cowardly), and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers (sexually immoral), and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.’ (Rev. 21:6-8) 

And the scholars offer some interesting explanations. ‘21: 6-8) It is done: The eternal purpose of God to gather a holy, devoted people for Himself has now been accomplished. Alpha and Omega: (see 1:8; 22:13. Beginning: God is the origin and source of all things (cf. Is. 41:4; 44:6; 48:12). End: He is also the goal or aim of all things. (cf. Rom.10:4).The water of life represents eternal sustenance and provision (cf. 22:1; Ps. 36:9; Is. 55:1; Jer. 2:13; John 4:14), available freely  by faith (22:17). 

He that overcometh is the one who has genuine, saving, persevering faith (cf. 2:11; 3:5; 1 John 5:4-5). He will inherit all that belongs to him as a son of God (cf. John 1:12; Rom. 8:16-17; Gal. 3:29; 4:7). But sinners, who have shown their rebellion against God by their lifestyle of sin, have already been cast into the lake of fire (20:12; cf. 22:15). The second death is eternal death (cf. 20:14).’ 

Brother was that ever hard to copy, but I did not want to deprive you of the references which can be an important part of understanding the scriptures. And now that we’ve all got it straight, it’s time to put it into serious operation, so that we’re not cast in the lake of fire to eternal death, obviously with the Lord’s help. Much LOVE!

…The Holy Trinity was there long before us…and will be there long after us…

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