Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 October 2020 Colossians 1:10.

Colossians 1:10.     ​That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;

Chuh man! It’s a wet and dreary looking Wednesday morning in my neck of the woods! But it would not really matter to me if I didn’t have to go out the street later to run some errands. Let’s hope the rain stops by then. But be that as it may, the most important thing though is that we are alive and kicking, meaning that there’s work for us to do, and we have Jesus for our Comforter, Guide and Saviour! Glory Be! 

That means nothing can stop us, because when He’s walking beside us we’re unstoppable, invincible and everlastingly mighty! (smile) That’s the power He has and so generously shares with us. Give Him some much deserved thanks and praise my fellow saints! 

And today I think we should take a look at Bruh Paul’s prayer for the church at Colossae, a church and people he had never seen but had heard of their problems from his friend in ministry, Epaphras, who had planted the church. Now hear his prayer: ‘For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;’ (Col. 1:9) Please notice the first thing Bruh Paul desires for the Colossians; ‘a knowledge of God’s will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding.’ Not clothes, or food or money or some material stuff, but spiritual food. 

And the scholars explain that verse thus:‘1:9. Wisdom is an accurate perception into the true nature of things. Understanding is the skillful application of this wisdom in practical situations.’ And oh my people, how insanely important it is in these perilous and troubled times for us all to pray for wisdom and understanding; the knowledge of truth and how to practically apply it, because we definitely lack it right here and now, when we need it most, that’s why we are foundering on the rocks of total disaster! 

Remember, without a vison, the people perish. (Prov. 29:18a) That’s Cousin Sol’s wisdom, and there certainly doesn’t seem to be any revelation of God’s will, and thus a morality based on it, in our current society. That’s why we are now wallowing in the mire of strife and sickness and sinking fast, like we’re in quicksand. And Bruh Paul continues: ‘That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;’(Col. 1:10) 

Yeh friends, knowledge of God helps us to walk worthy of Him, and what Bruh Paul so desired for the Colossians, is also what we desperately need today. And not only a static understanding of our Lord and God, but even more importantly, an ever increasing and growing knowledge that will enable us to stay on the straight and narrow path. 

And Bruh Paul then breaks it down: ‘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: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated (transformed) us into the kingdom of his dear Son (the Son of His LOVE):’ (Col. 1:11-13) What a powerful message my brethren! One that we need ever so badly today, if we are going to avoid the many pitfalls that are heading our way. 

But let’s hear the scholars now with some interesting explanations of all that wonderful scripture.‘1:10.This verse expresses the reason that in verse 9 Paul wants the Colossians to obtain a knowledge of God’s will. It is that they may walk (live) properly and fully please God. In Greek, the four explanatory participles of verses 10b-12 spell out and precisely define what a worthy walk entails: the believer is (1) fruitful in every good work, productive in Christian service; (2) constantly increasing in the knowledge of God, ever coming to know the Lord better; (3) always strengthened with all might, becoming spiritually stronger and stronger; and (4) in the habit of giving thanks, sincerely expressing gratitude to God in both the pleasant and unpleasant experiences in his life.’ 

Mama Mia! It’s definitely not an easy walk that Bruh Paul’s asking and praying for, but he knows, from his own personal experience, that the Lord won’t ask it of us and not give us His divine help to accomplish it. And sadly, that’s where many of us fall down. We don’t acquire the ever-increasing knowledge and wisdom of God and thus our faith doesn’t grow, so we’re not able to withstand the wiles and lies of the devil and the storms of life that naturally come against us. 

Hear the scholars further: ‘1:11. Patience is persevering through problems, trials, tribulations, and so forth. Long-suffering is forbearing the faults and offences of others.’ But with ever increasing knowledge of God, and His generous grace and mercy, it is all possible. And some more from the scholars: ‘1:12. This verse also might be translated “thanking the Father, for He made us fit to share in the salvation belonging to the saints who are in the light.” Light is the ethical condition in which God’s children live, namely, that of spiritual understanding with its accompanying morality and happiness.’ 

And finally from the scholars.‘1:13. Darkness is the religious state in which unbelievers exist, namely, that of spiritual ignorance with its attending immorality and misery.’ Thus friends, I guess it all boils down to whether we want to live in darkness with immorality and misery, or in the light, with its attendant morality and happiness. We have to choose one or the other, we can’t live on the fence, as so many of us are trying to do. It’s either heaven or the world that eventually leads to hell, we can’t have both. 

And in my humble opinion, heaven is indeed the better choice, although the pathway to it might be a tad more difficult. (smile) But as we keep on saying, if we choose heaven, God will give us the tools, the grace, mercy and wherewithal to make it safely and successfully. Now it’s up to you to choose your eternal destiny. But for those of us who have already chosen heaven, let’s go home now joyfully declaring (steups!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. 

In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And if we stick it out to the end, the future will be indeed even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine!Much LOVE!

…two ways to live out eternity…in the comfort of heaven…or the misery of hell…take your pick… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 September 2020 Mark 4:41.

Mark 4:41.     ​What manner of man is this (who can this be), that even the wind and the sea obey him?

‘I am under the rock…the rock is higher than I, Jahovah hides me! Yes, I am under the rock…the rock is higher than I, Jahovah hides me… I am under the rock!’ Oh mih people, mih people, I sure hope you all are under the rock with me yes, because when the storms of life come howling through, as they most certainly will, and are currently doing, under the rock that’s Jesus, in the shelter of His safe, LOVING and comforting arms, is the only place that true refuge can be found! Why? Because He is the ONLY one who can calm those hungry angry winds of the storm! 

Case in point; the evening Jesus and His disciples were in the boat crossing over the to the other side and a most fearsome storm arose, so that it threatened the lives of those on the water. But where was Jesus eh? Mark says: ‘And he was in the hinder part (the stern) of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake Him, and say unto him, Master, carest not thou that we perish?’ (Mark 4:38) Doesn’t that just make you chuckle? This great storm is happening, the boat is tossing and turning, most likely taking in water, but our wonderful Lord and Saviour is in the back of the boat quietly and serenely snoozing away like nothing is happening. 

But Jesus knew exactly what was happening and knew exactly what He would do. So Mark continues: ‘And he arose and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? How is it that ye have no faith?’ (Mark 4:39-40) And that’s exactly what He’s saying to us in these trying and very troubled times my people: Where is your faith eh? The faith you talk about so much when things are going well, but seem to lose when times get tough. 

And what was the disciples’ reaction to all that eh? ‘And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this (who can this be), that even the wind and the sea obey him?’ (Mark 4:41) Oh my people, it was the Creator of the wind and the sea, so that’s why they obeyed Him! But unfortunately, although the disciples had seen Jesus do other miracles, their faith in the actual time of storm was not good enough. But that’s how Jesus operates; often questioning us in order to spur us on to deeper trust and faith. 

And the scholars offer an interesting explanation of the scriptures here: ‘4:35-5:43. Jesus takes His disciples from the classroom to the laboratory. Having just taught that God’s power will cause His kingdom to grow to worldwide proportion and influence – the parable of the mustard seed – (4:30-32), Jesus now performs four miracles that demonstrate this divine might. God’s power is seen overcoming (1) the danger of a storm (4:35-41); (2) demons in a victim possessed (5:1-20); (3) disease in a woman physically ravished (5:21-34); and (4) the death of a little girl (5:35-43).’ 

But friends, we can’t be too hard on the disciples nuh, for as the scholars further state: ‘4:41. The fear must have been a mixture of reverential awe and real fright – it would be chillingly eerie to witness the instantaneous dissipation of a violent storm.’ And so it surely would be to all of us, regardless of how much we knew about Jesus’ divine might! But as Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer says: ‘When God awakens you to His presence, everything becomes a whole lot more meaningful.’ And isn’t that the gospel truth! Once you truly understand what’s happening with Christ in your life, your entire life takes on a whole new perspective. 

And talking about refuge in Christ and being under the rock, causes me to think of two interesting situations, the one of Moses, and the other of Elijah. Both were going through some difficult times in their earthly ministry. Moses prayed for God’s presence to lead him in the exodus of Israel from Egypt. He desired God’s assurance: ‘show me now thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight; And consider that this nation is thy people.’ (Ex. 33:13). And the Lord agreed. ‘My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.’ (Ex. 33:14) 

But Moses still was not satisfied, and later said: ‘I beseech thee, show me thy glory. And he (the Lord) said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee… (but) Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me and live. And the Lord said, Behold, there is a place by me, and thou shalt stand upon a rock: and it shall come to pass while my glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a clift (cleft) of the rock, and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by: and I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen.’ (Ex. 33:18-23) 

And I like this explanation that www.frankgantz.com/the-cleft-in-the-rock offers: ‘A cleft is a narrow space or split. This would have put rock under Moses’ feet, behind his back and on either side of him. In a sense he was wedged into this rock which would hold him in place and provide a stable base. From that vantage point he would behold the back of God’s glory.’ That makes sense doesn’t it. 

The same thing with Elijah; after killing the prophets of Baal he got tired and discouraged and ran away into the wilderness hoping to die. But God made him rest by a brook for a couple of days and fed him divinely. Then he went for forty days and nights in the strength of that food to Mt. Horeb and hid in a cave there. But the Lord called and asked what He was doing there and he claimed that he was tired and scared after being very zealous in doing the Lord’s work, but the children of Israel had forsaken the Lord and wanted to kill him. 

‘And he (the Lord) said, Go forth and stand upon the mount before the Lord: (1 Kin. 19:1-11) And an earthquake happened, but the Lord was not in it. Then a fire, but the Lord wasn’t in that either. ‘…and after the fire a still, small voice (delicate whispering voice). And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering (entrance) of the cave.’ And there the Lord spoke with him, strengthened and reassured him, then sent him back to continue his ministry. (1 Kin. 19:11-18) 

Yes friends, when we are weak and discouraged, and think we can’t go on, the most desirous place to be is in the comfort of God’s arms, in that safe cleft of rock on the mountain top that shows His mighty power. He will give us the peace and calm and the reassurance that we all need at times, to continue to be of service to Him here on earth. 

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!

…the best place to recuperate…in the LOVING arms of God… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 February 2020 Isaiah 52:12.

Isaiah 52:12.    ​For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the Lord will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your rearward (rear guard).

 

Then it was Wednesday… and everybody breathed a sigh of relief, thinking that they had survived, gotten through the most onerous part of the work week and the rest was just cool sailing until their big day of Friday came around again! It’s surprising how we are creatures of habit yes friends. We begin on Monday like a storm assailed vessel, writhing in the throes of agony, can’t make head nor tail of anything…then by Wednesday the storm has calmed and the ship has righted itself…then we look forward to clear and calm sailing as we round the bend of life and see heaven on Friday. (smile) 

But my people, there is no reason whatsoever to fear the storms of life and wait until Friday before we experience a slice of heaven, for the Lord our God made an ever-faithful promise to us long long ago through the prophet Isaiah, that He will deliver Zion (Jerusalem) from captivity by the hands of His suffering servant, the Messiah. ‘For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the Lord will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your rearward (rear guard).’ 

Oh friends, if the Lord promised it, then you can rest assured that it will happen. Yuh see how He guarded and guided the Israelites when He brought them out of bondage in Egypt? ‘ And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night. He took not away the pillar of the cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.’ (Ex. 13:21-22) 

Wow mih breddren! What a mighty and faithful God we serve! He guided the Israelites through the wilderness, assuring them of His enduring and powerful presence, protecting them from their enemy back then. And He has not forgotten us, those who have come after. 

Listen to this immortal promise: ‘Behold, my suffering servant shall deal prudently (prosper), he shall be exalted and extolled (lifted up), and be very high. As many were astonished at thee; his visage (appearance) was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men: So shall he sprinkle (startle) many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider.’ (Is.52:13-15) 

That’s what you call prophecy! (smile) Now listen as the scholars explain: ‘52:13-15. These verses actually stand as the introduction to the prophecy of the Suffering Servant in chapter 53. The subject of both passages is the servant of the Lord individualized as the Messiah who suffers for our sins. He is the culmination of all of Isaiah’s messianic prophecies. He is the miraculously born Son of the Virgin – Immanuel, “God with Us” (7:14; cf. Matt. 1:23). He is the Branch (11:1) who springs up out of the stump of the Davidic line. 

He is the new David (9:7) who will bring in a new Exodus and a new redemption for the people of Israel. Further, He is the One who deserves to rule the world because He is the One who suffers redemptively for all humanity. The terms exalted and extolled, and be very high are used only in 33:10 and here, but nowhere else in the prophets. It refers to the ultimate and final exaltation of His spiritual glory. Thus He will not remain in the humiliation which is described here but will rise above it (cf. Phil. 2:9-11). 

There is a deliberate contrast between the many who are astonished and the kings who will shut their mouths at him. The idea is that both the common man and the potentate will stand speechless in awe of Him. His visage refers to His appearance (or face), which will become so marred (disfigured) by beatings and scourgings that He will be barely recognizable. The verb for shall he sprinkle is a technical term found in the Mosaic Law for the sprinkling of blood in order to cleanse or purify from sin. 

This reference has nothing to do with water baptism. Here the servant of the Lord is viewed as our High Priest who offers His own blood for our sins. Before this Suffering Servant, the nations of the world are rendered speechless as they observe this unbelievable demonstration of God’s LOVE.’  

All I can say is ‘Wow, friends, Wow!’ Yuh see how the coming of Jesus was prophesied right down to the nth degree! All that we talked about there has happened already, or will happen in the Lord’s time. So remember, Jesus Himself spoke of His coming again in glory: ‘For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.’ (Matt. 16:27) 

Please be careful then friends, for remember what was prophesied by Isaiah about Jesus came through, so it’s fairly certain that what Jesus says will also come through. So let’s not be found on the outside looking in when He comes again nuh. For the wise money is on Jesus: He’s the odds on favourite; the One who can’t lose! 

So let’s wisely align our lives with him nuh: The One whom ‘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 the Father.’ (Phil. 2:9-11) 

Now that ought to seal the deal people! Jesus is officially the NAME above every other, to whom ALL knees will eventually bow! And it’s ALL to the glory of the Father…as it ought to be, for He is the One who made the plan and carried it out, based on His undying, everlasting and unconditional LOVE for us! So let’s acknowledge Him with gratitude and reverence as we declare (yeah!) our Wednesday Wail, letting everyone know our wonderful position in Christ, our Lord and Saviour. 

All together now in strong voice, with sincere hearts. ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Oh Mama, Mama! And what a glorious future that will indeed be. Our puny minds can’t even picture how glorious it will really be! Much LOVE!

…the most important name we can ever call…JESUS…!

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 January 2018 Isaiah 25:4.

Isaiah 25:4.   For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall. 

Ah friends, we’re sailing on the good ship Sunday, towards the sanctuary of God, where we will fall on our knees and praise and worship Him, give Him innumerable thanks, exalt His holy name and glorify Him without ceasing! 

Wow! What a time we will have in the sanctuary as we fellowship with each other, encourage each other, hear God’s word and bury it deep in our hearts, and souls, and eventually leave the sanctuary fortified with His strength and confidence, able to withstand whatever comes against us. And please remember the immortal words of the psalmist; this is the day the Lord hath made, let us all rejoice and be glad in it! That’s both wisdom and common sense friends! 

And as always, we’ll open the proceedings with worship in sweet song. This morning we’ll sing a Christian Gospel tune titled ‘The Anchor Holds.’ It was originally written by a pastor, songwriter called Lawrence Chewning. Apparently the year of 1992 became known as the year of sorrows for him and his family. 

One sorrow after another hit them and finally Lawrence, depressed and discouraged, was left burnt out, so he took a six month sabbatical from his pastoring duties and during that time began playing the piano more, in an attempt to get closer to God. In this sorrowful time he read stuff about the long dark night of the soul, when it seems you just can’t find God anywhere, and also experienced that emptiness for a while. 

Then, one day, in his many hours of playing the piano, he discovered that he was writing a song, a song that was coming from deep down in his soul. It was so touching that it provided him with therapeutic help in his depression and discouragement. But the song was some ten minutes long. However, a couple of years later, he offered the song to his friend, Christian singer songwriter, Ray Boltz, who edited and recorded it and made it a hit. 

Ah friends, ‘The Anchor Holds’ is one of my favourite Gospel songs because I can testify to the truth of those immortal words. And if you’re a true believer, so too can you. So let’s offer it up through the sacrifice of our lips now nuh, with appropriate reverence and heartfelt sincerity. In glorious harmony: ‘I have journeyed Through the long dark night Out on the open sea By faith alone Sight unknown And yet His eyes were watching me (Chorus: The anchor holds Though the ship is battered The anchor holds Though the sails are torn) 

I have fallen on my knees As I faced the raging seas The anchor holds In spite of the storm I’ve had visions I’ve had dreams I’ve even held them in my hand But I never knew They would slip right through Like they were only grains of sand (Chorus) I have been young But I am older now And there has been beauty these eyes have seen But it was in the night Through the storms of my life Oh that’s where God proved His LOVE to me. 

(Chorus: The anchor holds Though the ship is battered The anchor holds Though the sails are torn. Ohhh yes, The anchor holds Though the ship is battered The anchor holds Though the sails are torn).’ 

Ah mih people what words of truth and encouragement! And it’s only when we are going through a stormy period in life that we can write such heartfelt words. You’ll notice too, that it’s during the storm that God proves His wonderful and unconditional LOVE to us, more so than when the seas are calm and quiet. 

Because that’s when we need Him the most, when we discover that our efforts are too puny to withstand the storm that’s bruising and battering us. And only when we take refuge in His safe harbour, when we allow Him to anchor our hearts and souls in the sheltered bay that’s His awesome LOVE and grace that we truly find rest and rejuvenation for our troubled, storm-filled lives. 

Oh what a wonderful God is our God! No wonder in Isaiah’s song of praise by the redeemed the survivors of the Great Tribulation exalt the Lord, lift their voices in praise to God for His protection. ‘O Lord, thou art my God: I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth. For thou hast made of a city an heap (a ruin); of a defensed (fortified) city a ruin: a palace of strangers to be no city; it shall never be built (rebuilt). 

Therefore shall the strong people glorify thee, the city of the terrible (ruthless) nations shall fear thee. For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.’ (Is.25:1-4) 

Yeh friends, our God runs things; He controls it all. So in your time of need, who are you going to call eh, who are you going to run to for refuge? Almighty God, if you are wise! As the old reggae song says, ‘You’ll run to the rock for rescue, but there will be no rock.’ But if you run to the Creator of the universe, you’ll find Him ready, willing and able to offer help. 

As Isaiah prophesies about Jerusalem’s glorious future. ‘And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow (shade) in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert (shelter) from the storm and from rain.’ (Is.4:6) 

Oh friends, there’s no better place to hunker down in stormy times than under the wings of our heavenly Father, just like chicks hide under the mother hen’s wings when it rains, for under there we are guaranteed safe passage through the storms of life. Much LOVE!

…through the heartache…through the storm…take my hand precious Lord…lead me on…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 June 2017 Ephesians 6:4.

Ephesians 6:4.    And ye fathers provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture (training) and admonition of the Lord.

HAPPY  FATHER’S  DAY!

Grace and peace be unto all you fathers out there on this Father’s Day Sunday! May the Lord look down upon us with fatherly mercies and blessings that we can share with our families. 

Ah my fellow fathers, this is the day that our society has chosen to honour us, please let us enjoy the day, and let it raise our level of fatherhood as we go through these trying times in our world. True fatherhood has never been more necessary than it is right now, as we are supposed to be the leaders and basic guides of our households. 

So please let’s step up to the plate and do our best so that those who follow us will have superb examples to emulate. That’s the best gift we can ever give; that of being a good role model. Remember, we’ll never be perfect, but we can all be the best we can be. 

Now let’s offer up some thanks and praise to our Mighty Father in heaven, shower Him with the adoration that He so rightly deserves. Let’s acknowledge that even in the deepest and darkest and most tumultuous times of storm, His strong anchor holds us together. So let’s sing one of my favourite Gospel Songs, ‘The Anchor Holds,’ with strong voice and true sacrificial praise. 

‘I have journeyed through the long dark night, Out on the open sea, by faith alone, Sight unknown; and yet his eyes were watching me. (Refrain: The anchor holds, though the ship’s been battered. The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. But the anchor holds, in spite of the storm.) 

I’ve had visions, I’ve had dreams; I’ve even held them in my hand. But I never knew they would slip right through, Like they were only grains of sand. (Refrain) I have been young but I’m older now. And there has been beauty these eyes have seen. But it was in the night, through the storms of my life, Oh, that’s where God proved His LOVE for me. (Refrain) I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. But the anchor holds in spite of the storm.’ 

Yes friends and fathers, in spite of everything the world throws at us, if we are sheltered under the mighty hand of God, our anchor WILL ALWAYS HOLD! That’s His faithful promise! And we know that our God doesn’t take His promises lightly like we tend to do. 

That brings us to our Bit; most worthy advice from Bruh Paul to the Ephesian fathers way back when, and even more so for these undisciplined and uncontrolled times. ‘And ye fathers provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture (training) and admonition of the Lord.’ 

Ah fathers, we have already allowed this current generation to grow without proper fatherly advice, so that now they are ungodly, lack discipline and figure the world owes them a living. We obviously have not lived up to our wonderful billing, else our youth would not be as disorganized, disenfranchised and disturbed as they are. 

We have done this primarily by our absence from the family home, and even when there, through our neglecting to teach the children what we are supposed to teach them. And it’s not that we didn’t know, because most of us were taught it when we were growing up.  And it’s all based simply on the Lord’s words to His angels about Abraham, before He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. 

‘For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgement (righteousness and justice); that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of to him. (Gen.18:19) 

Yeh fathers, it’s all about serving the Lord and executing righteousness and justice, as Moses further instructed the Israelites. ‘And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.’ (Deut. 6:6-7) 

Oh fathers, how many of us teach our children about God or talk about the Lord or any kind of godly stuff in our houses these days eh? Not too many. But we teach and talk about all sorts of worldly stuff in our homes and schools, while God is considered a subject of taboo. That’s not right or wise fathers, for in the long run it will bring the wrath of God down on all of us for disobeying His command. 

Now hear these words of Asaph the psalmist. ‘For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which commanded our fathers, that they should make known to their children: That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children. 

That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep the commandments. And might not be as their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation, a generation that set not their heart (did not prepare its heart) aright, and whose spirit was not steadfast with God.’ (Ps.78:5-8) 

Unfortunately fathers, that is the kind of generation we have raised. Now what will they teach the next generation about the Lord eh, if they don’t know anything about Him, and thus don’t care about Him? Not a whole lot. And that is exactly why the Lord wants us to teach our children about Him; so that the word can be passed down from generation to generation. How do you think it go to us eh? Because each previous generation taught the one after them. 

And we’ll close with one immortal verse from Cousin Sol. ‘Train up a child in the way he should go: and (even) when he is old, he will not depart from it.’ (Prov.22:6) Yes fathers, once we instill the Lord in the hearts of our children from an early age, even if they stray some, they will always have something solid to fall back on. 

Now, though we have not done our best so far, it’s definitely not too late for us to try and right some of our wrongs. So let’s sincerely ask the Lord to help us do our fatherly duties properly from this time onward. That’s wisdom of enormous proportions! Much LOVE!

…fathers should be people their children can proudly look up to…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 June 2017 Psalm 37:1.

Psalm 37:1.   Fret not thyself because of evil doers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.

Well friends, yesterday I finally had to turn on my a/c for the first time this year. It was the first of many truly hot days I believe we’ll have this summer. But what amazes me is that though it was hot, the wind was also blowing at a brisk pace, the poor trees were dancing all day to its hectic riddim. 

But then this morning, around 3.a.m, I was outside on my porch, and though it was somewhat cooler than during the day, there was not a breeze to be had. 

I don’t know if it’s just my imagination, but in the last year or so, I’ve noticed that regardless of the season or time of day, in my area, the winds have been much stronger and more persistent than before. 

Who knows what our great God is doing eh? He controls everything, and His ways are so much higher than ours, that even if He explained it to us, we would not be able to comprehend it. So we just have to have faith, and trust and obey. 

And to help us do that, here is a li’l something from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from his Hour of Power Devotional titled ‘I want to Improve.’ 

Please pray with me. ‘O God, how thankful I am that you have come into my life through the Holy Spirit. I’m willing to say: “I’m not perfect, Lord! I want to improve. Show me where I can.” So, Father, I sense that a miracle is happening in my life right now. You are doing something beautiful in my heart this very moment. I thank and praise you! Amen.’ 

Yeh friends, if we sincerely and faithfully prayed that prayer, then I’m sure something good is happening in our hearts right now.Wow! What a great God we serve and worship! 

Now it might not be a huge miracle, or manifest itself right away, but I’m sure that sometime down the line you’ll suddenly realize what’s changed, what’s improved, and then you’ll want to give even more praise, thanks and glory to our heavenly Father for His extraordinary LOVING-kindness to His undeserving but oh so faithful children! Glory to God my brethren! 

One of the problems we Christians suffer these days is that we’ve lost our passion for God, lost our zest for life, lost our faith in miracles. Chuh! 

Even worse, we expect miracles to be always big and uproarious! But the truth is that the Lord doesn’t do that many big and uproarious miracles, but He does plenty small and seemingly insignificant ones, which we either don’t notice at all or simply ignore. 

Ah friends, please remember that once we truly surrender our lives to Christ, He works continuously in them, and not everything is big and monumental. 

So please, let’s start regaining our passion for Christ nuh, which brings with an increased zest for life in general, and let’s also begin looking for and appreciating the small but still important ways He works in our lives. We are missing out on a whole lot of wonderful stuff by only looking for big, eye-catching things. End of sermon! (smile) 

Now don’t blame me, if we don’t have much space and time for our Bit, because that’s where the Lord led me. And being obedient, I had no choice. (smile) 

And is it ever an encouraging and reassuring Bit. ‘Fret not thyself because of evil doers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.’ 

Yes friends, that’s the amazing opening advice from Bruh David from that amazing Psalm 37- The true state of the wicked. 

And Bruh David certainly knew what he was talking about because he stuck with the Lord through thick and thin, and likewise, the Lord stuck with him. His life wasn’t easy, a lot of it because of his mistakes, but he never lost his passion for the Lord God of his fathers. 

Now, as I’ve said above, lost passion for God is one of our major problems today, that’s why we’re so tossed and upset by the storms of life, by how the wicked seem to be increasing and the righteous decreasing. 

Bruh David ran from his enemies, Saul and his son Absalom for many years, but the Lord always kept him safe and secure, then finally brought him to his divine destiny; the greatest king that Israel ever knew. That’s why he could confidently open the psalm with our Bit, and then continue with that same confidence. 

‘For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. 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 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.’ (Ps.37:2-5) 

Oh friends, there’s no more encouraging scripture than those few words in the Good Book, and that from a man who truly lived them and thus knew exactly what he was talking about. 

Today I implore us to take his words to heart and put them into practice, so that we too can be led to our divine destiny. Common sense and wisdom dictate it! 

Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra with the passion and strong belief that it ought to engender in us. In one, strong and unified voice now: ‘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 best way to show that passion is to go out now and share the LOVE of Jesus! Much LOVE!

…a life lived without passion…is a wasted life…especially if you’re a follower of Jesus…

 

P.S. Yes, it’s late, but it’s very worthwhile. (smile) 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 October 2016 Isaiah 53:7.

Isaiah 53:7.   He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought (was led) as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. 

Aye mih people, is Sunday, that special day of praise, worship and fellowship, where we raise our hearts and voices to high heaven and glorify our most wonderful God Jehovah! 

And we’re going to start out the right way, with some praise and worship. That’s to soften us up, reduce the fear, tension, anger, resentment, whatever is negative in our stone cold hearts, and thus make us more receptive and amenable to receiving the Word. Remember, hearing of the word is very important in our Christian faith. 

As Bruh Paul told the church at Rome. ‘How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? …So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.’ (Rom.10:14, 17) 

Yes friends, the oral communication of the gospel of Christ is essential in a believer’s life, and there’s nothing I enjoy more than hearing the word preached. 

Anyway, enough talk, we suppose to be offering up sacrifices of thanks and praise with our mouths. So let’s do that nuh, because there’s nothing nicer than getting into some good praise and worship before you hear the word. 

So let’s raise up a storm in the Lord’s house, show Him that we are truly His beloved children, and we sincerely LOVE Him with all of our hearts, minds, bodies and souls. Please sing with me, this wonderful song of faith, ‘The anchor holds.’ 

As one heavenly choir now: ‘I have journeyed through the long dark night, Out on the open sea, by faith alone, Sight unknown; and yet his eyes were watching me. The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered. The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. 

I’ve had visions, I’ve had dreams; I’ve even held them in my hand. But I never knew they would slip right through, Like they were only grains of sand. The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered. The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. 

I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. I have been young but I’m older now. And there has been beauty these eyes have seen. But it was in the night, through the storms of my life, Oh, that’s where God proved His LOVE for me. 

The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered.  The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm.’ 

Oh my people, my people, truer words have never been spoken! Our omnipotent God, our great anchor, holds us together and keeps us from floundering, from being thrown on the rocky shores, even in the most catastrophic of life’s storms! 

And I like the line where the songwriter declares that it was in the night of the storms of life when God proved His LOVE for Him. And isn’t that the indisputable truth friends? It’s usually in our nights of misery, of fear, of loneliness and of despair, that our wonderful God shows how much He truly LOVES and cares for us, by standing faithful and strong alongside us and bringing us safely through! 

Oh glory to God my people! And why wouldn’t He eh, after sending His beloved Son, Jesus Christ to die for us, suffering such agony, shame and rejection, but forever standing strong in His God-given task as expressed in our Bit. ‘He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought (was led) as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.’ 

What stoicism and strength of purpose my faithful brethren! Now let’s hear the word that precedes our Bit, from Isaiah’s great prophecy, re the suffering servant, Jesus Christ. Hope our hearts are soft enough to joyfully receive it. 

‘Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm (power) of the Lord revealed? For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no (stately) form nor comeliness (splendour); and when we shall see him, there is no beauty (elegance) that we should desire him. 

He is despised and rejected of (forsaken by) men; a man of sorrows (great pains), and acquainted with grief (sickness, injuries): and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs (sickness), and carried our sorrows (pains): yet we did esteem (reckon) him stricken, smitten of (struck down by) God, and afflicted. 

But he was wounded (pierced through) for our transgressions, he was bruised (crushed) for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.’ (Is;53:1-6) 

Yes friends, that’s the scripture lesson for this Sunday morning, and I do hope that it struck a tender and most grateful note in our hearts, as we heard the of the ‘sufferation’ that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ went through for us, so that we could be reconciled to Almighty God and don’t end up in dreaded Hades forevermore with the evil one, Lucifer. 

Please, let’s ponder the goodness of our magnificent and magnanimous God today, so that we can find the strength and wherewithal to handle the storms of life that we all experience, for that is the wisdom of heaven. Much LOVE!

…without the anchor that’s God in our lives…we will certainly be dashed to pieces… on the dreadful and unforgiving rocks of sin…