Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 December 2018 Matthew 7:20.

Matthew 7:20.   Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
 
Aye friends, the ole fella is somewhat listless and lethargic this Saturday morning yes! And the aches and pains not helping the situation either nuh. But yuh know what, we not giving in to the feelings today. The aches and pains might slow us down some, but we not stopping. Remember the race is not for the swift but for the sure of foot, and yuh better believe when I plant my big feet down they stay down! (smile) 

Yeh, it’s just one of those days; the weather doesn’t look good, the body doesn’t feel good, but GOD IS GREAT! That’s something we can always count on, for He has said so in the promises of His Word, and His Word does not lie! Give Him some thanks and praise my people! 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week in his noble attempt to aspire us to a better tomorrow. And this one jumps right out at me today: ‘You are never strong enough that you don’t need help.’ Wow! That’s gospel truth! For none of us can do it all ourselves. As they say, no man is an island. The Lord made us to fellowship with each other and to help each other, not to be single and all sufficient in our selves. 

And on that point, hear what the Good Book says: ‘Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think anything as of ourselves: but our sufficiency is of God.’ (2 Cor.3:5) Now that says it all! 

And this next quote also points directly to God: ‘Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.’ You do have all of that, but only if God is sincerely in your efforts! 

Now listen to this one: ‘It is possible to become discouraged about the injustice we see everywhere. But God did not promise us that the world would be humane and just. He gives us the gift of life and allows us to choose the way we will use our limited time on earth. It is an awesome opportunity.’ 

Yes friends, it is an awesome opportunity we’ve been given to live for Jesus on this earth. And to use that opportunity properly, we need to remember these two scriptures. In the immortal words of Bruh David: ‘O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.’ (Ps.34:8) And also: ‘The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.’ (Ps.145:9) 

It’s all about our heavenly Father my people! And this quote exemplifies that: ‘We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community… Our ambitions must be broad enough to include the aspirations and needs of others, for their sakes and for our own.’ That goes right back to the first quote, we can’t be successful on our own, for success means taking others on that journey with us, both individually and communally! That’s how the Lord designed it! 

And this last quote covers them all: ‘When we are really honest with ourselves we must admit our lives are all that really belong to us. So it is how we use our lives that determines the kind of people we are.’ And today I want to focus on that last line; how we live our lives determines the kind of people we are. 

Yeh friends, we can live our lives like the Pharisees did, outwardly showy and hypocritical, or like Jesus recommended, honest and truly considerate of others. For as He says: ‘Wherefore by their fruit ye shall know them.’ Yes friends, by our deeds we shall be known. And hear some deep insights of Jesus on the subject of how men live their lives. 

First off, He states very clearly: ‘A good tree cannot bring forth evil (bad) fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.’ (Matt.7:18) And that’s not rocket science, just plain, basic logic. Then Jesus lays it out in plain terms: ‘Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.’ (Matt.15:11) 

Oh friends, I hope we understand that. We can’t bear good fruit unless what is in us and what comes out of us is good! What’s in our hearts determines the kind of people we’ll be! 

Hear Jesus again: ‘Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out (eliminated) into the draught (body waste)? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.’ (Matt.15:17-20) 

Yeh friends, that whole argument began when the Pharisees complained that the disciples were eating with unwashed hands, which they considered a big thing. But Jesus, as usual set them right. And in Matthew 23, (please read it) He really lambastes the Pharisees, who looked real good on the outside but were dirty as hell on the inside! 

And we’ll end with this description: ‘Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye are like unto whited sepulchres (white washed tombs), which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity (lawlessness).’ (Matt.23:27-28) 

And the scholars offer this explanation: ’23:27-33. Whited sepulchres: Since contact with a dead body rendered a person unclean according to the Mosaic Law, graves were customarily painted white to make them conspicuous and give the opportunity of avoiding contact with them.’ 

Oh friends, please let us live lives that will not cause those unpleasant comparisons to be said of us nuh. Instead let us be good and uncorrupted trees, so that we can bear good fruit in Jesus’ name and make a productive difference in the lives of those around us. Much LOVE!

…whatsoever is in our heart…will undoubtedly manifest itself in our outward behaviour…that’s why we need a clean heart to live for Jesus…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 September 2018 Mark 6:31.

Mark 6:31.   And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart (aside) into a desert (deserted) place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. 

Here we go again friends with the hurricane season! Hurricane Florence is barreling towards North Carolina today! I guess all we can do is pray that at the last minute the storm will veer away from the land, and if not, that it does not do significant damage. 

Ah Lord eh! As the ole people would say; when it’s not one thing, it’s another. But it’s all a part of life and we just have to keep on keeping on in Christ, regardless of what adversity comes against us. But here is an interesting poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that assures us that every so often, it’s wise to step aside from the rat race that’s life nowadays and rest a spell. It’s titled ‘Moments of Leisure. 

Please pray with me. ‘Lord, thank You for the moments of leisure And peaceful solitude I can legitimately snatch Here and there Without apologizing. Thank You for assuring me That I needn’t condemn myself When I spend some time Reading or resting Or shopping just for fun. Thank You for convincing me That there’s no glory In a rat race. 

I’ve discovered, dear Lord That an hour or two “Away from it all” Calms my inner muddle And cuts through the confusion. Without a driving sense of urgency I think more clearly – I plan more wisely. I am more patient, more LOVING More understanding with my family. I even accept with calmness The multiple demands imposed upon me. Thank You so much, dear God For the certain knowledge that Jesus (Who always obeyed the Father) Went apart from the crowd to rest. So must I!’ 

Yes friends, it’s essential that we step aside once in a while from our oh so busy lives and just smell the roses and enjoy the wafting breezes sent from heaven to calm our convoluted and confused spirits! Taking this world too seriously will only lead to breakdowns in all areas of our lives. Our bodies, minds, and souls simply were not meant to keep on going continually at the fast pace the world is dictating these days. 

So please step aside and rest every so often. Just leave the world and all of its nonsense alone for a spell and rest in the comfort of your God, doing whatever makes you calm and comfortable. It’s not a sin to do that. It’s more likely sinful to continue on the fast track when your body is crying out for rest and release. 

And we have a perfect example of that necessity in our Bit and the Bible Promise for the poem. After Herod killed John the Baptist and gave his head on a charger to His wife, the disciples came and told Jesus about it, also about what they had done and taught. 

And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart (aside) into a desert (deserted) place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. And they departed into a desert (deserted) place by ship privately (by themselves).’ (Mark 6:31-32) 

Oh my people, if our Lord and Saviour saw the need for occasional rest and privacy, why wouldn’t we eh? Instead of allowing the world to drive us unceasingly in our efforts to gain earthly wealth and power, we need to slow down every so often and take a break from it all. 

And right after that instance above, He fed the multitude of five thousand with five loaves of bread and two small fishes, then He sent them away again to rest. ‘And straightway he constrained (compelled) his disciples to get into the ship, and to go to the other side before (before him) unto Bethsaida, while he sent away the people (multitude). And when he had sent them away, he departed into a mountain to pray.’ (Mark 6:45-46) 

Even Jesus needed to rest and recuperate after doing those miracles and having so many people around Him just pleading for their own desires to be fulfilled. It does take a toll on the human body when it’s bothered and badgered too much. And please note what Jesus went away by Himself to do; pray. Pray to His heavenly Father to ‘renourish’ His spiritual self and seek the Father’s guidance, for He came to do the Father’s work, and that necessitated occasional deep communion. 

So my brethren, we need not take the fast track that the world offers us. We have the option of taking the slower one that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ offers. So which will it be eh? It’s all up to us individually, but I do hope that the Spirit of wisdom guides us to accept the latter, because that’s the wiser and more amenable choice. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice and true heart: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

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

…the race is not for the swift…but for the sure of foot…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 April 2018 Psalm 1:1.

Psalm 1:1.    Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly (wicked), nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.

Awright mih people, one more time around the track, remember is a marathon we running here, and the race is not for the swift, but for the sure of foot…and the wise ones who depend on Almighty God! 

Yeh, I guess we all realize it’s Monday, and the work merry- go-round begins again. But wisdom dictates that we look at it this way; we at least get a two day break every five days, so there is something to look forward to in the short run, and eventually heaven and eternal life with Jesus in the long run. 

Mama Yo! Now just that promise alone, ought to keep us motoring along each day with no thoughts of worry or pressure or pain since we’re only focused on the bright lights of heaven. (smile) Well we all know it looks good on paper, but it’s not that easy to do in reality, that’s why we have our Monday Morning Battle Hymn to lively us up, so that we can go out to labour with a good attitude, the peace of Jesus in our souls and His joy in our hearts. 

So let’s sing up a storm this morning nuh. ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Now hopefully that kicked in the adrenaline and we’re feeling the feeling; the feeling of Jesus working a substantial change in our attitude toward the work day. Remember, if we don’t work, we won’t get pay, and then we can’t maintain our families and ourselves in the standard to which we’ve become accustomed. 

That alone should strike a note of caution in our hearts, especially with decent jobs so hard to find nowadays, and the economy lurching unsteadily back and forth, like a drunken man. So although we may not like our jobs, we ought not to trivialize them, we have to take them seriously, because they are what cause us to survive in this dog eat dog world. 

And the best way to accomplish all that is by living the kind of life put forth in our Bit. ‘Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly (wicked), nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.’ 

It’s obvious friends, that if we take the broad way to wherever we’re going, we’ll end up in destruction, because the broad way is the foolish way and only leads to negative circumstances.  So what’s the alternative, you ask? 

But that should also be obvious: living for Jesus, following the straight and narrow path, not usually the easiest way. This is how the psalmist describes it. ‘But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate (ponder, think on) day and night.’ (Ps.1:2) 

Now that isn’t always easy to do either, but if we are true and sincere believers, we will wisely go to the Lord for help. And He will help us, since He NEVER turns away anyone who comes with a sincere heart seeking His assistance. 

And the awesome result of pondering on God’s word and trying to live it, is this: ‘And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers (channels) of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.’ (Ps.1:3) 

Yes friends, remember we serve the Creator of this universe, and He is not only omnipotent, but also magnanimous. Thus when we live for His glory our lives will become prosperous. And that’s not so much in terms of money alone, but also in family, friend and work relationships. 

Our lives will be basically stress and worry free, and though we will encounter problems, we’ll be able to handle them in an efficient manner, again with God’s ever-present attention and help. 

So what think you this Monday morning eh? Are we seriously going to live for Jesus; pondering His word and following His most excellent example? I do hope so, for all of our sakes, otherwise we will definitely pay a serious price for our disobedience. 

As the psalmist ends: ‘For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.’ (Ps.1:6) And that’s the living truth my people! So please, let’s be wise, rather than foolish nuh, and follow God’s law. Much LOVE!

…enter not into the path of the wicked…and go not in the way of evil men… (Prov.4:14)

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 July 2014 Matthew 24:13

Matthew 24:13.     But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

Oh Friends, wonder of wonders, we’ve been granted another wonderful opportunity to serve Almighty God with the gift of life today! Glory Hallelujah!
 
And my people, please realize that today is today; not yesterday or tomorrow, but simply TODAY; the present time; a present from our heavenly Father! So let’s concentrate on it and no other nuh.
 
Let’s try to do our very best on this one special day, for every day that we’ve been granted the awesome privilege of drawing breath is indeed special, and ought to be treated as such. And if we just do that, treat each day as being very special and important, then it will surely satisfy the desires of yesterday, and spur on the growth for tomorrow.
 
Please note that that was what Jesus did during His earthly sojourn. He got up early, had meaningful communication with the Father, mapped out His day in accordance with the Father’s wishes and will, then He went out and worked that plan; healing and doing good.
 
He wasn’t overly concerned with what had happened yesterday, or was going to happen tomorrow, but kept His focus on, concentrated the vast majority of His energy and time on fulfilling His goals for that particular day, which is always, TODAY.
 
Therefore, in accordance with Jesus’ modus operandi, I’m asking us to please put the same perspective in our own lives; simply concentrate on what we can and have to do today.
 
As Jesus warned His listeners in the Sermon on the Mount: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow (therefore do not worry about tomorrow): for tomorrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:33-34)
 
Yes Friends, once we’re seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness today, tomorrow will look after itself. And remember that tomorrow never really comes, it simply becomes today, so we just have to keep on doing the same thing, seeking God and His righteousness every today.
 
And that’s possibly the easiest way for us to adhere to our Bit: ‘But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.’
 
Oh mih people, as we said yesterday, the trait of endurance is a must in the believer’s life! And it’s possibly the hardest thing to do with all the pressures of life, of living, and of the world, being heaped upon us in these very sad and troubled times.
 
That’s why concentrating on just one day at a time, the day ahead of us, is so important. It frees us from all the other concerns that yesterday and tomorrow would have us pay unnecessary attention to. And just like yesterday, we’re going to look at some more of the many scripture passages that have to do with enduring.
 
And we’re going to begin with the words of Jesus, when He warns the disciples of serious persecution in their future. ‘And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.’ (Matt.19:22)
 
Yes my brethren, as the saying goes, ‘the race is not for the swift, but for the sure of foot;’ the one who takes his time to see where he is going and spells himself, so that he can endure; last the entire race.
 
Then we have the author of Hebrews warning us: ‘Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience (endurance), that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.’ (Heb.10:35-36)
 
Again, my people, it is all about staying strong and steadfast in the work of Christ, which we know isn’t always easy, but we’re certain of His generous help when we obey His will.
 
Meanwhile, James says this on the very real and tangible subject of temptation. ‘Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that LOVE him.’ (James 1:12)
 
And I think Friends, that it will be an excellent idea to close with some wise, interesting and important observations from the scholars on that verse.
 
‘1:12. Mankind understandably may look on tragedy as the curse of God, as Job’s friends did. Trials are, however, the means through which God’s blessings can come. One’s endurance in and victory over trials brings God’s blessings. Christians, therefore, are not instructed to seek avenues of escape.
 
God desires that they mature in the situation rather than move from it (cf. Rom.5:3-5; 1 Pet.1:6-7). He does, however, promise to provide an escape if the testing becomes unbearable (1 Cor.10:13).’
 
And I’ll break the scholars words here to show us that scripture, since I know that many of us won’t look it up if I just say to do so, and it’s very important for us to know and understand that scripture verse.
 
‘There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear (endure) it.’ (1 Cor.10:13)
 
Yeh Friends, we all run to that verse as soon as trouble shows up, expecting God to quickly deliver us. But that’s not the purpose it serves.
 
For, as the scholars continue: ‘God’s people need to meditate more on James 1:12 than 1 Corinthians 10:13. The reason for this, and why God allows trials in the lives of His people, is revealed in the Mosaic Law: ‘That he might humble thee, and that he might prove thee, to do thee good at thy latter end.’ (Deut.8:16).’
 
Yeh mih breddren, running this race of earthly life is all about ENDURANCE; about standing strong and steadfast in God’s LOVE and plan for each and every one of us.
 
So today, let’s make it our number one priority nuh, for that is indeed the wisdom of Almighty God, and we certainly can’t get any better than that! Much LOVE!
 
…when we make up our minds to endure…rather than simply escape…our heavenly Father is pleased…and gives us even more grace to endure…