Today’s Scrip-Bit   4 February 2023 Luke 23:42.

Luke 23:42.       Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.

Come Saturday morning, me and my friends, we will linger and laze in bed, or wherever it suits us…until we can linger and laze no more…and are forced to get up and face the realities of life. And I’m sorry to say that has already happened to me. Chuh! I was lingering and lazing quite nicely in bed, when the reality of having to write the Bit hit me head on. (smile) But them’s the breaks! The important thing though, is that we do spend some time lingering and lazing and not all of it simply facing the realities of life. End of philosophizing. 

Now, let’s see how the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week matches up to the realities of life, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first one says: ‘Always remember that your present situation is not your final destination. The best is yet to come.’ And I believe that to be very true, for even in my advanced years, I still believe that the best years of my life are still out ahead of me. I haven’t done anything worthwhile, earth shaking or moving, haven’t left my mark on the world as yet, haven’t defined my legacy, so it must mean that better things are yet to come. (smile) 

And when you have Jesus working in, with and through you, then you know that better things are always in the offing. The best of them all being with Him in heaven and all the good things He’s prepared there for us. I like to look to the promise Jesus made to the one criminal crucified alongside Him, who sincerely pleaded: ‘Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.’ (Luke 23:42-43) Wow! What an awesome Lord and Saviour we have. Without even one word of reproach to the sinner, Jesus promised that he would be in heaven with Him that very day. 

So it’s obvious that His faithful followers can expect the same. Glory be! Praise His holy name! And the next quote kindly informs us that ‘Beauty isn’t about having a pretty face it’s about having a pretty mind, a pretty heart, and a pretty soul.’ And that’s the gospel truth my people! Beauty, like the world considers it, is only a façade, an outer appearance that looks good for a while, but like all earthly things eventually decays and/or disappears. As the saying goes, beauty is only skin deep. True beauty though is something that exists on the inside, and doesn’t decay or disappear, but lasts forever. 

It’s when we have Jesus and all that He stands for running through our hearts, minds, bodies and souls that true beauty shines out. That means having things like the fruit of the Spirit emanating from us. And in Bruh Paul’s words to the Galatians, that consists of: ‘LOVE, joy, peace, longsuffering (patience), gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness (courtesy and consideration towards others) and temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.’ (Gal. 5:22-23) Now when those things shine forth in our lives, that’s when we have or see true beauty! 

Meanwhile, the next quote serves up this powerful food for thought. ‘If you have a family that LOVES you, a few good friends, food on your table and a roof over your head. You are richer than you think.’ And that’s more gospel truth my fellow believers! If you possess those things and have sincere people like that around you, then you are amongst the richest people in the world. Why? Because money may be able to buy food and put a roof over your head, but it cannot buy true friends and a LOVING family, which are really the most important things in this life. 

Who do you run to when life gets rough, when, you’re sick, discouraged, hurting and totally devastated? Obviously your friends and family, which certainly includes Jesus, since He’s a friend that sticks closer than a brother! So please, let’s not allow the materialism of the world to blind us to the importance of friends and family in this life. For as Jesus so rightly said: ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal.’ (Matt. 9:19) Thieves cannot break through and steal family nor friends, neither can moth and rust cause them to decay. 

That brings us to this quote: ‘Truth is like a surgery; it hurts but it heals. A lie is like a painkiller; it gives instant relief but has side effects forever.’ Oh friends, today’s quotes are ever so chocked full of gospel truths! (smile) For truth does hurt, but the hurt eventually disappears, while the trauma that arises from the invocation of lies never seem to end. It’s always there, haunting us in the least appropriate moments. Truth though, cuts out the bad or diseased parts and leaves the remainder to heal in peace. 

Unfortunately though, in this troubled and ungodly world, it’s extremely difficult to discern truth from lies because the words are bandied about so much that they have now become impossible to differentiate one from the other. Lies are constantly being shouted out as truth, and if you hear them often enough, you can sadly believe them as truth. The opposite is also happening; truth is being touted as lies. And furthermore, it’s now the accepted thing that everybody has their own truth. 

Ah Lord eh! My mind is truly finite yes, because I can’t fathom how to have several truths on the same subject. The only basis of truth that I know of comes from the Good Book, God’s unchangeable, true and infallible Word! That’s where real truth abounds and where we should go to find it, if we sincerely desire it. And here’s the clincher: ‘Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue (abide) in my word, then ye are my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.’ (John 8:31-32) Now that’s how we discern truth from lies! 

And this last quote is also a gem. Our friend Anselm really outdid himself this week. (smile) It wisely advises: ‘Give. But don’t allow yourself to be used. LOVE. But don’t allow your heart to be abused. Trust. But don’t be naive. Listen. But don’t lose your own voice.’ Wiser advice could never be given! It’s essential to do all those things: Give, LOVE, Trust and Listen. However, it’s also essential that we keep a close watch when we do them, for there are negative sides to them all, and if we aren’t careful, the enemy can cause them all to blow up in our faces with disastrous negative results. 

So when you give, pay close attention to whom you’re giving and what they are doing with what you give. Likewise, when you LOVE, LOVE deeply and genuinely, but still keep a close watch over your heart so that it’s not eventually broken and abused. The same goes for trust, especially in this current untrustworthy world. It’s imperative that we seriously evaluate in whom and what we place our trust, not just go trusting things and people willy nilly. And listening is also a most important part of the whole equation, for we can’t know what others are thinking and saying without listening. 

But please, please, in these vile and evil times, it’s of the utmost importance that we believers in Christ Jesus not lose our voices. In fact, this is the time when our voices should be heard more than ever and louder than ever, because we need to bring our world back to God and away from the negative doings of the enemy! Ah friends, life is not easy, never was and never will be, but when you have the Spirit of Jesus dwelling within you, leading and guiding you, then you are able to live it the right way; that means spreading the gospel by words and sincere deeds. Please, let’s endeavour to do that seriously and sincerely from today nuh, because our world desperately needs the truth and life that emanates from Christ Jesus! Much LOVE!

…our world’s on the brink of the precipice…only the diligent endeavours of Christ’s people…can prevent it from going over… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   2 September 2022 John 8:32.

John 8:32.       And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

Oh friends, today as the rising of the sun begins, as that magnificent orb makes its daily journey around the world, many different voices in many different languages will loudly and harmoniously chorus: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday! Thank God for the weekend and all the freedom it brings!’ 

Ah Lord eh, do we ever like and fantasize about that thing called freedom. And down through the ages, so many of us have died shouting out its name, but we don’t really know the heavy price that supposed elixir of the human spirit demands. For to be truly free, one needs to be responsible, not lawless like so many of us believe. Freedom carries with it an inherent need for responsibility, loyalty, self-control, self-discipline and level headedness. It calls for mercy, LOVE, grace, forgiveness, goodness and godliness. 

It doesn’t give us the right, as so many of us believe to do exactly what we want, when we want, regardless of the consequences to those around us. It doesn’t mean chaos, selfishness and disregard for our fellow man. In fact, it demands just the opposite; a healthy and responsible care and compassion for our fellow human beings. 

And I guess that’s why all the revolutions and wars and other negative circumstances that have occurred in the name of freedom have never succeeded, because in the end, those at the forefront of those uprisings, end up doing exactly what their oppressors and suppressors were doing; oppressing and suppressing somebody in the supposed name of freedom! But yet, we still constantly hear the battle cry for freedom: freedom from this, freedom from that, freedom from responsibility, freedom from paying taxes, freedom from God and His law. 

Hn! Yet we still desire all those things that a responsible freedom bring. But in reality, freedom is only, and will always be a figment of our imagination, for as the song so truly says: we all must bow to somebody; to either God or Satan. And once you’re bowing to someone, you’re never free. Bowing to Satan will never make you free, because he is only interested in keeping his selfish claws in you, restraining you from rising to the level for which you were created, and thus making hellfire and damnation your eternal home. 

The closest we can ever get to that thing called freedom is by reverently bowing to our Maker, Our Creator and Provider, our Way-maker and Forgiver, the enabler of Eternal Life. And that can only happen when we sincerely embrace His majestic Son, Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour. Yes, friends, only through the intervention of the Son, can one get to all the magnificent benefits and freedoms that the Father provides. Listen up as Christ enlightens us on the subject. 

First off, He sets us straight by imparting this startling, but ever so true information: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.’ (John 14:6) Oh my people, unless we believe that, and act seriously upon it, we will never see the bright lights of heaven and enjoy the promise of eternal life! That’s the truth, and nothing but the God-awesome truth! Only sincere belief in Christ Jesus will enable us to enter through those pearly gates we all talk and dream about so much! 

And likewise, the only source of true freedom is Christ Jesus. And why do we know this? Listen as He taught in the synagogue of His hometown of Nazareth. On that momentous Sabbath day in the temple, Jesus read thus from the Book of Isaiah. ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised (oppressed). To preach the acceptable year of the Lord….This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears (hearing)’ (Luke 4:18-19, 21) 

Oh my people, Jesus was letting His hometown know that He was the chosen One, the Messiah, the One sent to set the captives free, to heal their broken hearts, souls and spirits. But, as it so often happens, when someone close to us, just like us, rises up to another level, we tend to offer derogatory comments rather than gladly accept their new status. And that’s exactly what happened to Jesus in His hometown of Nazareth. 

They didn’t believe that the lowly carpenter’s son of Joseph and Mary, who grew up amongst them could ever be the Messiah. His words so annoyed them that they eventually forced him out of the city and tried to throw Him down a hill. Thankfully though, as the Good Book says: ‘But he passing through the midst of them went his way.’ (Luke 4:30) And the scholars offer this explanation on the verse. ‘It is not clear whether this is a miraculous deliverance, or whether Jesus, by dint of His imposing presence, was able to stare His opponents down and then walk away untouched.’ I like to think it was the latter, just to show the unbelieving fools that He was not scared of them. (smile)  

Now, this final word from Jesus re freedom. He said to a crowd of Jews that supposedly believed in Him. ‘If ye continue (abide) in my word, then ye are my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.’ (John 8:31-32) And when they claimed they were never in bondage, so how could they be made free, Jesus explained to them that they were in bondage to sin. However, ‘If the Son therefore shall make you free; ye shall be free indeed.’ (John 8:36) 

And is that ever the glorious truth my brethren! Only through the work of Jesus on the cross of Calvary, His shed blood, His death and resurrection, can we be truly made free. Free from sin, free from our most noted enemy, Satan and the sinful life that he espouses and tries to get us to also espouse, so that we can eventually end up like him, in the lake of fire. But thankfully, we’re wiser than that! We’re following Jesus! Glory Hallelujah! So, let’s go to Him in prayer, through our Friday Chant, asking for His divine help in our troubled world. 

As one confident voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 and monkey-pox viruses, as well as our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the viruses and the unrest in our streets. 

So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. 

And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’  

Now friends, if we truly expect positive divine help, then it’s up to us keep the promises we’ve just made, and show right motives in our hearts. Much LOVE!

…ONLY  through belief in Christ Jesus…can we gain whatever freedom is possible in this earthly life… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   23 April 2022 John 8:32.

John 8:32.      And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. 

And then it was Saturday; the Jack of all trades day, meaning you can work, rest and/or party comfortably, without any self-recriminations on Saturdays. (smile) Some of us choose to work, especially around the house, doing the personal things we don’t have time for during the work week. Others choose to be simply couch potatoes for the entire day, in front of the boob-tube. And then there are those of us who think that Saturdays were simply made for partying…and nothing else. 

For us though here on the Bit, Saturday means checking out the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this past week as he aspires to inspires us for a better tomorrow. And the first one says: ‘Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.’ And that seems true enough, for you can’t do something or go somewhere unless you’ve first decided what you’re going to do or where you’re going to go. It all begins in the mind’s eye. And that’s also the first law of Christ’s kingdom: You’ll see it when you believe it. That means walking by faith and not by sight. (1 Cor. 5:7) 

Remember Jesus’ words to Martha before He raised her brother Lazarus from the dead. ‘Said I not unto thee, that if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?’ (John 11:40) The same thing applies to us today my faithful brethren; we won’t see the glory of Almighty God unless and until we believe that He is able to do anything and everything. Likewise, in our personal lives, we won’t bring anything to reality unless we first envision it in our minds and then believe, with God’s help we can make it real. 

That brings us to this next quote: ‘On any given Monday I am one sale closer and one idea away from being a millionaire.’ And that’s no lie! On any new day it’s possible to do great things, because we are always, only one step away from greatness, from doing the improbable, especially if the Lord God Jehovah is in our corner and He thinks the time is right for a monumental blessing. And surprisingly, it often takes only ONE of anything, to propel us to lofty heights. Which seems sort of contrary to this next quote, which tells us that ‘If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.’

 Now that’s gospel truth, especially in the entertainment business. Somebody who we’ve never heard of before comes up with a hit song or something, and we quickly claim that they’re an overnight success. But we never hear of the years they been toiling in the trenches for a pittance, begging for breaks they never got, or being ripped off by unscrupulous promoters. Most of them have done their time, have spent time learning their craft, living hand to mouth, doing odd jobs so they can survive. But we never hear about that, just the seemingly quick path to success. 

However, there are some true overnight successes, but they never last. They are here today and gone tomorrow. And the truth is, if we want to make it big in anything at all, and remain at a decent level, we have to put in the time, the elbow grease, the disappointments, the wondering if we will ever succeed, or if we made a mistake doing what we’re doing. But remember too, that without perseverance and endurance you will never get to the winner’s circle. 

And there’s no field of endeavour in which that’s truer than in our Christian walk of faith. Without taking up our crosses and bearing them with a good attitude, which can only be fuelled by serious meditation on God’s word and serious time spent talking to Him, we will never become model Christians for others to see and want to emulate. It’s why Christ calls us, or rather desires us, to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world. We are needed to add flavour and light to a dark and desolate world, which, unfortunately, we are not doing such a good job at, otherwise the world would still not be as dark and desolate as it is currently. 

This Easter Season, we’ve made a big fuss over Jesus, His death and resurrection, just like we do over his birth at Christmas, but then in the twinkling of an eye we forget all the wonderful things we claim He’s done, is doing, and will do for us, and we revert to our normal behaviour; that of living more in the world than in the kingdom of God. No wonder the world doesn’t get any better. Shame on us friends! 

Then we come to this quote: ‘There is no harm in repeating a good thing.’ Technically speaking, that’s true, especially where learning is concerned, but in our current society nobody wants to hear, see, or do the same thing over and over. Our penchant nowadays is for something new, with new seasons for cars, clothes, phones, even for people, (smile) although we have not understood or hardly used the last new thing. That’s made us into a ‘throwaway society.’ And then we wonder why there is so much junk in our world and why our environment is being so badly abused. 

The hard fact of the matter though is that we only learn anything by repetition, doing it over and over. And again, that is oh so true of our Christian faith. We can only learn God’s ways by reading and studying His word over and over. And that’s exactly what He said to Joshua when he made him leader of the Israelites after the death of Moses. ‘This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.’ (Josh. 1:8) 

And I guess that explains why so many of us supposed Christians aren’t prosperous and don’t have good success: we don’t meditate on God’s word, and therefore don’t do what it says. That brings us to this last quote. ‘No one is more hated than he who speaks the truth.’ And I’m in a quandary over that one, because we all hate those who tell lies, but at the same time if we consider the word of God as being the truth, then many are disliked when they speak it. And we are all supposedly searching for and seeking truth, which is basically facts, the actuality of things or events and reality. 

But with Jesus, truth comes from Him, as He says, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life…’ (John 14:6) His truth stems from the fact that we are all purveyors of sin, but He tells us that, ‘If ye continue (abide) in my word, then ye are my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.’ (John 8:31-32) But by the same token, Jesus warned about those who hold to His truth. ‘And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.’ (Mark 13:13) 

Yes, my fellow saints, there’s no better way to end this Saturday morning than on those words of truth. The world doesn’t like followers of Christ and will do its best to make our lives miserable, but we know the truth, that’s Jesus, and that awesome knowledge has set us free, and we WILL abide in it right to the very end! Much LOVE!

…in this world…EVERYTHING revolves around Jesus…from Creation to Salvation…that’s the truth…

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 May 2021 John 8:32.

John 8:32.     And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

And then the rain stopped on Saturday! Yes friends, yesterday was truly a rainy day in my area, and the earth was glad. But now it needs the rain to stop so that it can soak up all that heavenly blessing and put it to good use. That’s the same way we have to gather our many divine blessings and then to put them to work in Jesus’ name, each and every day that we draw breath in God’s great universe. For that’s what He desires of us, and why He so lavishly blesses us. So let’s remember today that our duty is to share God’s LOVE, His peace, joy and kindness with others, opening their eyes to the wonderful life that is to be found in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

Now let’s turn to our Saturday task, that of checking out the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first one says: ‘We can’t be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea.’ And that’s quite true my brethren, if we don’t acquire a li’l get up and go, that comes with faith in Jesus, we will never really enjoy a lot of what our world has to offer. 

Oh, I know it’s real nice and comfortable to stay in our little world and not let it be disturbed, but Jesus said we should go far and wide and spread His word. (smile) And change is something that always comes in some form or the other, whether we want it to or not. So the sooner we get comfortable with change the better off we will be. And I can guarantee, that if you seriously intend to work for Jesus, you’d better get accustomed to change, because as He raises you from glory to glory, lots of changes will occur in your life. That’s one unchanging aspect of His ministry. (smile) 

And that’s why this next quote is important. ‘Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.’ We see that in almost every revolution that’s ever taken place in our world. It often begins with one man, who gathers a small group around him, and eventually the explosion takes place. And what better example is there than the twelve disciples of Christ, who turned the world upside down with their exhortation and teaching on His behalf, and the example of godly living, that brought so many lost and downtrodden souls to Him. 

They set the stage, the standard, that has continued for over two thousand years, and is still going strong today. So never doubt that a small group can cause major changes to be made in our society. That brings us to this next quote: ‘A lie can travel around the world and back again while the truth is lacing up its boots.’ And is that ever true my people, especially in this time of awesome technology and the many systems of social media to be found in our current world. And it just so happens that a lie travels faster than the truth, even in normal situations. 

It seems that in our fallen nature we are more taken with lies than with the truth. Just look around at the many lies that are spreading like wildfire about so many things and how slowly the truth is moving. And you couldn’t find a better example than Donald Trump and his immense lie that the last election was stolen from him. Look at number of supposedly sensible people who believe it, and are spreading it, even without any proof to back it up. And the bad thing about lies is that the more often you hear them, the easier they become believable. That’s why the lie-mongers keep spreading their lies. 

But lying brings such baggage with it, that it’s never worth it in the end, and that same baggage always cause you to get caught in the lie. I’ve seen that happen more often than I can remember. However, as this next quote says: ‘If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything.’ And I can testify to that, because in my youth I was a good liar, but eventually gave up lying when I discovered that you had so much to remember; remember who you told what and when, so you didn’t get caught in the lie. 

However, when you tell the truth, your spirit is free and easy, you don’t need to remember who you told what to and when, because you’ve said the same thing to everyone. The truth gives you freedom, even in this sinful and confused world, and when you are a believer in Jesus, you know a higher truth, which also gives a greater freedom. When people were questioning Jesus as to who He was, He kept telling them that He was the Messiah, but most of them refused to believe. The Good Book tells it thus: ‘Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue (abide) in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed. And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.’ (John 8:31-32) 

Yes friends, that’s the highest form of truth and freedom we can ever receive in this life; that offered by Jesus. As He says a few verses later on in that same chapter: ‘If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.’ (John 8:36) That’s real freedom my brethren! And that brings us to our last quote, another gem of truth and wisdom. ‘It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.’ Oh, how often have we seen that happen eh, even to us? (smile) 

But mankind just likes to quickly open his mouth without thinking, and that’s why we so often get in trouble with our words. And there are numerous scriptures that warn us about the power and evils of the tongue. But Cousin Sol says it best in this context. ‘He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent (calm) spirit. Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace (keeps silent), is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.’ (Prov. 17:27-28) 

And that’s why we know that there are so many fools in our society today! Too many of us are opening our mouths to talk when we either have nothing to talk about, or we don’t know what we’re talking about. And we’ll close with some more wise words from Cousin Sol on the topic. ‘Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that LOVE it shall eat the fruit thereof.’ (Prov. 18:21) Yes my people, our tongues are powerful weapons, and can be used for both good and evil, but please remember, you’ll have to pay a heavy price, if you use it for evil. Much LOVE!

…keep thy tongue from evil…and thy lips from speaking guile (deceit)…  (Ps. 34:13)                                                     

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