Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 January 2019 Psalm 39:7.

Psalm 39:7.   ​And now, Lord, what wait I for? My hope is in thee.
 
Well it’s a wet and bright morning in my neighbourhood – bright possibly because I got up later than usual, – also went to bed later than usual. (smile) But anyway, I’d like to welcome us all back to the daily grind and common task, the banal, often boring existence we call everyday life! (smile) Yeh friends, no more celebrations until Valentine’s Day down in February. It’s mostly home and work and pay the bills until then. 

But some of us manage that quite well, possibly because we have the Hope of Jesus in our lives. And in the words of the renowned French writer of works like the Count of Monte Cristo, Twenty Years After, Ten Years Later and The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870) – real name Dumas Davy de la Pailleterie; ‘All human wisdom is summed up in two words: wait and hope.’  

And that is the gospel truth my believing brethren! What else is there in this life eh, but to hope for what we want and then to wait patiently for it? Without either hope or patience we’re like a duck out of water. (smile) As Bruh Paul wrote to the Roman church so long ago: ‘For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience (perseverance) wait for it.’ (Rom.8:24-25) 

And that’s simple logic; why hope for something when you already have or see it eh? But friends, nobody personifies those qualities of hoping and patiently waiting more than our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, because He promises the best and greatest gifts of all time; salvation and eternal life, which He sacrificially and selflessly died to provide for us! And freely too, because it’s through the grace of God, we’re saved. 

As Bruh Paul points out to the Ephesians: ‘But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great LOVE wherewith he LOVED us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us (made us alive) together with Christ, (by grace ye are (have been) saved…For by grace are ye (you have been) saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not works, lest any man should boast.’ (Eph.2:4-5, 8-9). 

Ah mih people, Bruh Paul makes it abundantly clear that salvation and eternal life are not ours to attain on our own strength, but through hope and faith and patience and perseverance and obedience in Christ and His will and His wonderful promises. As He says, all we have to do is believe in Him! But some of us find that too simple and easy, and anything that comes to us too easily is no good; if we don’t struggle for something, then it’s not worthwhile. 

But with Jesus, my friends, it’s different. The first part, believing is the easy part, for after we believe then comes the oftimes hard part of being obedient. (smile) Anyway, all I really wanted to do this morning was to talk some about hope, and help us build it in Jesus this new year of 2019. But somewhere along the line I got lost and confused, (smile) so let’s get to some scriptures that encourage us and build our hope in Christ. 

And where better to start than with these most reassuring words of Bruh David: ‘I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest (dwell securely) in hope.’ (Ps.16:8-9) 

Oh my people, when our hope is sincerely placed in the great living God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, then we’re not afraid of life, or whatever it brings against us, and we can rejoice and be safe and secure in His LOVING care! And Bruh David states it plain and simple and assured in this verse, our Bit for today: ‘And now, Lord, what wait I for? My hope is in thee.’  That’s exactly how we ought to also put it my people! 

And Cousin Sol has an interesting verse in Proverbs: ‘Hope deferred maketh the heart sick, but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.’ (Prov.13:12) And the scholars explain that thus: ‘13:12. Hope deferred depresses, but its fulfillment revitalizes.’ Yeh mih breddren, when we hope for stuff, we often feel depressed having to wait for it, but when we get what we’ve hoped for…Brother! Are we ever filled with joy! 

Now hear the lamenting prophet, Jeremiah: ‘Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is.’ (Jer.17:7) And if Jerry could make such a statement, after all the hardship he went though on the Lord’s behalf, then there must be a whole lot of truth in it. Oh friends, there are so many wonderful scriptures on hope in the Good Book that I’m having a hard time to determine what to use. 

Anyhow, hear these last two: the first from Jeremiah in his famous Lamentations, one we all know and LOVE to quote, but don’t action so well. ‘It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.’ (Lam.3:26) And this verse from Peter is a most wonderful one to end with: ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively (living) hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.’ (1 Pet.1:3) 

Yes friends, because Jesus rose from the dead, we too have the hope that those who believe in Him will also rise at the sound of the trump on the last day! Glory be! Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday mantra, loud, bold and sincere, letting the world know who and whose we are! 

In unison now: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ And if we truly believe, then we’ll go out and graciously action those words. Much LOVE!

…HOPE renews me…and lets me face each day…with the best possible attitude… (From One More Day -Daily Meditations for People with Chronic Illness by Sefra Kobrin Pitzele) 

P.S. It’s long and late, and I hope it all makes sense, but if it doesn’t, I know you all are wise enough to pick sense from nonsense! (smile) What a nice smiley day! Much LOVE!

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 October 2018 Zephaniah 3:17.

Zephaniah 3:17. The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest (quiet you) in his LOVE, he will joy over thee with singing.

 

And Saturday dawned bright and sparkling…but there had to be a fly in the ointment. Chuh! At eight o’clock in the morning I went out on the balcony to do some quiet reading, but lo and behold a man was out there mowing the lawn next to my building, making a terrible racket. Didn’t he realize that people liked to sleep in on Saturdays, and 8 o’clock was just too early to be making so much noise around the buildings? 

Obviously not! I took it for a little while then had to come back inside to the A.C. Like lawn mowers are the bane of my existence wherever I go! (smile) However, like all things do, it eventually came to an end, and we were able to open the balcony door again and allow some of the cool sea air to filter into the room. 

And since today is that blessed day of relaxation – Saturday -, let’s look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Listen to this first one: ‘The most important thing is to enjoy your life—to be happy—it’s all that matters.’ 

Now the first part I can live with, because it is important to enjoy your life and be happy, since that’s why Jesus gave up His, and as He says, came so that we might have life more abundantly. (John 10:10) But the part that says being happy is all that matters is totally wrong, for what really matters is living a godly, righteous and obedient life before God: LOVING God and LOVING our neighbours and brothers! 

As we saw over the last two days, those are the two most important life principles, and if we follow them, everything else, including, especially happiness and enjoyment will flow from it. Then hear this: ‘I enjoy life when things are happening. I don’t care if it’s good things or bad things. That means you’re alive.’ 

So is it only when things are happening you can feel alive? I don’t think so, since life is never always moving, there are a lot of calm times and doldrums when it feels like nothing is happening. But be apprised that our great God is ALWAYS working behind the scenes, so when you think that nothing is going on, a lot is happening in the background. But it’s also essential to have a good attitude towards life, whether it’s rough or running smoothly. 

And this next quote tells us that: ‘Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.’ And there is a fair amount of truth to it. You can’t stand stationary in life and expect to improve, especially if you’re a serious follower of Jesus, because He expects continual growth from His people. He expects us to become more and more mature every day, as the Good Book says; moving from glory to glory, climbing higher and higher, li’l by li’l, as we mature in our faith and become more Christ-like. 

And the last quote solemnly declares: ‘The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.’ And that’s a fact my brethren. The more you praise your God and celebrate your life the more there will be to celebrate and praise! I can personally testify to that. It doesn’t mean that trials and tribulations, adversity and calamity won’t befall you, but even under those negative circumstances you will find reason to praise God and celebrate life. 

Listen to the advocacy of our Bit, when the prophet Zephaniah declared the ultimate supremacy of Israel so long ago. ‘The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest (quiet you) in his LOVE, he will joy over thee with singing.’ 

Wow mih breddren! Can there be a greater promise than that? Only that pertaining to salvation and eternal life! And since it’s God’s promise, then you know it will be kept, because NONE of His words ever come back to Him void, they ALWAYS perform the purpose they are sent forward to perform. And we can’t refute that the Lord is mighty in our midst, for so He is in the universe He created, and there is NONE as mighty as Him! 

As per ‘he will save…’ Glory Glory mih people, the Lord has indeed saved us by offering His Son, our Lord and Saviour as a sinless sacrifice in atonement for our abominable sins! Praise His holy name! And he is rejoicing over us with unbelievable joy; those who choose to come to Him humbly and reverently through His Son Jesus Christ! 

And if you believe in Christ, then you are put to rest, quieted in His awesome and unconditional LOVE! And the Lord our God is indeed joying over us with singing and glad tidings because we are His, have been sealed by the Holy Spirit as His people until the day of redemption. Mama Mia! What joy comes from believing in Jesus Christ! Nothing else can compare to it. 

And if you don’t believe Zephaniah…or me (smile) then listen to Isaiah talking about the restoration of Zion. ‘For as a young man marrieth a virgin, so shall thy sons marry thee: and as the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, so shall thy God rejoice over thee.’ (Is.62:5) 

And once more from Isaiah, re new heavens and a new earth: ‘And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying.’ (Is.65:19) Ah friends, what a momentous and monumental day that will be, when all grief and crying, sorrow and pain will have been banished from our lives! Give the Lord thanks and praise for that promise which we all know will be kept in His time! Much LOVE!

…you have to believe it…through faith…before you see it…that’s the Lord’s way

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 October 2018 Ephesians 2:8.

Ephesians 2:8.   For by grace are ye (you have been) saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.
 

Another day friends! Another day in the life, as the universe unfurls as our great God planned it! Praise His holy name! We’re alive, be we kicking or not (smile), and that means the Lord still has work for us to do down here on this nonconforming earth. So let’s do it with a good attitude nuh, one that reflects all the values that Jesus taught us. 

And I simply could not resist the pull of this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, this Tuesday morning. It’s called ‘The Lesson of the Windmill.’ So please read with me: ‘Lorraine, Kansas, where I grew up, was known as the City of Windmills. I LOVED having one in our backyard. I was sure that if I climbed to the very top I could touch God! If only I was brave enough to try! 

My brother, two years younger than I, was usually eager to please me, so I begged him until he finally agreed. He stepped on the first rung, the second, the third and fourth. “Im proud of you!” I shouted. Another rung…and another…and almost to the top. Then he looked down – and froze. Our mother heard his screams. When she saw her young son on the ladder, she calmly silenced his screams while I ran for our neighbour. 

In moments Johnnie was rescued. I knew he was angry. “You said if I climbed to the top I could touch God, but I didn’t even see him.” Often God has used this memory of the windmill to remind me that we never reach God by climbing. Again and again we attempt to climb the rung of good works, the rung of prestige and success – until we discover anew that the ONLY way to reach God is by kneeling at the foot of the cross. He waits for us there!’ 

Wow friends! What Truth! Everything we are and ever will be begins and ends at the foot of Jesus’ cross, for that’s where He carried out His greatest and most important work. And if we need to meet Him, that’s the surest place to do it. And what I really want to highlight in the poem is the climbing, the striving behind the world’s treasures and rewards that so many of us supposed believers are still so voluminously (for want of a better word) involved in. 

Oh my people, we can’t serve both God and mammon, or the world’s vision, at the same time. We have to choose one or the other. And obviously serving Almighty God is the one that makes the most sense. Remember what Jesus said on the subject in His famous Sermon on the Mount? ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt.6:33) 

Yeh friends, if we truly and diligently seek God, He will add all the material things we need. As the scholars say: ‘When our priority is spiritual, God will take care of the material, for where God guides, He provides.’ I like that… so much so that we’ll say it again: ‘Where God guides, He provides.’ 

And that’s the absolute truth! Our God DOESN’T ask us to go somewhere or do something and NOT provide the wherewithal to accomplish it! We need to remember that my brethren. But then again, we can only come to that point, that recognition through the working of our faith in the school of hard knocks. For it’s mostly when we struggle, but also persevere that we truly see God’s faithfulness. 

However, also in answer to our false and misleading attempts to reach God through good works and the world’s system of rewards, hear the basic impossibility of that approach – the scripture promise for the poem above, as well as our Bit – as penned by Bruh Paul to the church at Ephesus. ‘For by grace are ye (you have been) saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.’ 

Yes people, works have nothing whatsoever to do with our being saved! It is an undeserved favour, a divine gift of God! And why did God make it thus? Simple, as Bruh Paul elucidates: ‘Not of works, lest any man should boast.’ (Eph.2:9) God knew the animal that He’d made, for if anything was up for grabs through our good works, men would be bragging and boasting from here to kingdom come, just like we do under the world system. 

 But instead, He turned it around. ‘For we are his workmanship (new creation) created in Christ Jesus unto (for) good works, which God hath before ordained (prepared) that we should walk in them.’ (Eph.2:10) So the long and short of the story is that God long ago decided that once we were spiritually saved, morally reborn, then our natural course would be to do good works. 

So please remember, as the scholars explain: ‘That no part of salvation is “of yourselves” or due to what we do – the whole of salvation is the gift of God. Man is saved “by grace” that is by the kindness of God in having Jesus die for our sins. But this grace is appropriated through faith, that is; man believes what God has done for him and relies upon Christ’s atonement to blot out his sins and bring him into a proper relationship with God.’ 

And having written that indelibly in our hearts, minds and souls, we can now go home declaring (yeah! spelled it right!) our Tuesday Mantra. In full voice, with a strong sense of purpose, let’s make known to this sinful world who and whose we truly are.

‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ Now let’s go out and do just that! Much LOVE!

…good works CAN’T get you into heaven…only faith in Jesus CAN…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 July 2017 Psalm 49:6-7.

Psalm 49:6-7.   They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him.

Oh friends, I surely hope that the old adage that states what starts wrong turns our right is true yes, because my day certainly got off on the wrong foot. 

I got up early, partly because of some aches and pains in the ole body, then discovered that a blood test I had planned to take in the afternoon actually stated early morning. So I got myself together and rushed out to the nearby lab, which opens at eight. 

But lo and behold when I got there at seven forty five, there were already people sitting inside waiting, and a line that ran from the desk, all through the office and halfway up the corridor. 

Steups! No way was I going to get blood work done early enough to satisfy the doctor’s request, with at least twenty people before me. So I just turned around and came back home. And that’s actually to your benefit, because you’ll get the Bit earlier than if I had stayed at the lab. (smile) 

Ah mih people, it’s certainly a challenge getting old yes, because you don’t know what aches and pains and illnesses will suddenly show up at some unexpected time. (smile) 

But yuh know what, in spite of all the challenges, I’m still glad to be alive and I give our heavenly Father plenty, plenty thanks for keeping me going, as He also helps me handle the challenges that come against me. 

And I’ll say it one more time: What a wonderful God we serve and worship my faithful brethren! There’s none LIKE Him anywhere else in this whole wide world! Please give Him some thanks and praise for being so wonderful to the undeserving children of men! 

That brings us to our Bit. ‘They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him.’ 

And we all know that to be indisputable truth, yet many of us still strive for the riches of this world, hoping that it will bring them salvation. Chuh! What a foolish generation we have raised my people! 

All throughout the Good Book we’re told that the wicked will not see God’s face, for their abominable sins will cause them to crash and burn in the fires of hell. But yet many of us still insist on participating in downright evil thoughts and actions. 

Friends, there is no salvation in either an addiction to procuring earthly wealth or to be a proponent of evil, for you will take none of the wealth with you, and your evil deeds will only get you a hot date with Lucifer. 

And when we talk about redemption, there’s ONLY ONE who can redeem; that’s our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! And yuh see the exorbitant price He had to pay to redeem us: enormous shame and excruciating death on the cross. 

As Bruh Paul told the Galatians: ‘Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made (having become) a curse for us: for it is written, CURSED IS EVERY ONE THAT HANGETH ON A TREE:’ (Gal.3:13) 

Yeh friends, Bruh Paul is there quoting Deuteronomy 21:23. Please look it up. And why did Jesus take this curse upon Himself for us? 

Hear Bruh Paul to the Galatians again: ‘That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.’ (Gal.3:14) 

So yuh see my brethren, if Christ had not borne our sins on the cross at Calvary, we, as Gentiles, would not have received the promise of Abraham, and would have been completely shut out of God’s wonderful and generous favour. 

That means we have to be eternally grateful to Jesus and live the righteous way He wants us to live. Even if we have been graced with a lot of earthly wealth, it is still very important for us to live a clean and righteous life. Why? 

Because when the roll is called up yonder, our earthly wealth will mean absolutely nothing, unless we have used it to help propagate God’s kingdom here on earth. And even then, though our good works down here will bring heavenly rewards, it’s our sincere belief in Jesus that will open the doors of heaven for us. 

So friends, I implore us to stop focusing on the wealth and possessions of this evil world, and instead to focus on our attachment to Jesus, develop a strong and enduring relationship with Him, because that is what will ensure our eternal life with Him! 

And now, having heard all these truths re our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and having them refresh our souls and spirits, let’s go home announcing to the world our sincere faith and trust in Him, by declaring our Wednesday Wail with plenty enthusiasm and much chutzpah. (smile) 

Wailing: ‘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 friends, that’s the answer to all our problems right there; a wonderful present and future relationship with Jesus! Much LOVE!

…only Jesus saves…only Jesus redeems…only Jesus can open the door to heaven…that’s why He is indeed…the Way, the Truth and the Life…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 July 2015 Hebrews 10:23‏

Hebrews 10:23. Let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)

Oh Friends, it’s a wailing kind of Wednesday – the Lord of Hosts is on His throne, the earth has been washed clean by a torrent of heavenly blessings yesterday, and now both the sun and the Son are shining ever so brightly all around the universe – so let’s wail nuh. (smile)

‘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 that’s exactly where our focus should be fixed my people; on the bright and shining Light that’s Jesus! For there is no where else that one can go to obtain the glorious wonders and blessings and promises that He has set aside for those who LOVE Him and are obedient to His commands.

Now here is something from the One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin which corroborates what we’ve just said.

It’s titled ‘JOY,’ and goes like this. ‘Joy! My favourite word. Circumstances may determine my happiness But, Lord, You determine my joy. Joy is sweetly honest. No wonder the minister said: “You can’t hide joy if you have it – You can’t fake it if you don’t.” Who can manufacture it Lord? Joy is Your creation. Who may have it? Anyone who asks. Thank You Lord for joy!’

And all God’s children said a loud and proud and grateful, ‘Amen! Praise the Lord for the joy He has given us!’

Oh Friends, what absolute and beautiful truth is ensconced in that poem! Joy is indeed the Lord’s creation, and anyone who wants it just has to ask for it. Come to Him in true surrender and obedience, and with faith ask for joy, and in His LOVING-kindness the Lord will grant your request.

So all of us who seek joy, not happiness which is controlled by circumstances, need only go to our heavenly Father with pure and true motives and ask for that most wonderful blessing of joy and it will be granted to us.

That means we need to stop searching for that fleeting thing called happiness that the world touts, and instead seek the everlasting and complete spiritual blessing of joy that only comes from God Almighty.

And for your info, the promise for that poem is the one we all know and LOVE so much. “Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!” (Neh.8:10 NLT)

Yes Friends, more absolute and wonderful truth! That’s why the ole crook Lucifer always tries to steal our joy, to get us feeling pitiful and miserable and sorry for ourselves, because he knows that’s when we’re most vulnerable. So we need to guard our joy with great care and concern, for once it’s lost, Beelzebub is in control.

Now let’s turn to our Bit, another foundational truth of our faith. ‘Let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)’

And that my brethren is even better and truer than money in the bank! Your life’s in much better hands than All State when you give it to the Lord and Creator of this world through His Son and Saviour Jesus Christ! No ifs, ands and buts about it!

And if you don’t believe me, let’s look at some scripture that denotes the Lord’s faithfulness to His people. And we’ll begin with one from Hebrews: ‘Through faith also Sarah herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of (bore) a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised.’ (Heb.11:11)

Yeh mih people, if a Deity can promise that you’ll bear a child when you’re around ninety years old and deliver that promise in due course of time, then how can you ever doubt His faithfulness eh?

Just look at how Abraham himself went to offer up Isaac as a sacrifice when the Lord asked him. He must have been somewhat uncertain since the Lord had promised that Isaac would be his heir.

But after having walked with God for so long, having left his homeland simply because God told him to, and seeing God’s faithfulness all through his wandering, deep down inside he must have known that his God would do something to avoid that tragedy.

And the Lord did, providing a lamb for the sacrifice after seeing that Abraham was indeed willing to sacrifice Isaac. (Gen.22:1-19)

Now hear Bruh Paul, another man that placed everlasting faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. This in his first missive to the church at Corinth.

‘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 it.’ (1 Cor.10:13)

Oh Friends, what a faithful God we serve and worship!

Now hear this explanation from the scholars. ’10:13. Make a way to escape (lit, “an egress” or “way out”). In early Greek usage, this term had the sense of a landing place for a ship. The idea is thus not that He will enable us to escape temptation, but that He will enable us to land intact on the other side.’

Yeh mih breddren, we won’t always escape the temptation, but God’s faithfully promised to make a way for us to come through it with flying colours. And remember too, that all the problems we face in this life are in some way, shape and form, designed to bring us closer to the perfect image of Christ.

So please, let’s not be afraid and anxious when times and circumstances get rough, remember that we have a most faithful God, who has promised to look after us…and He certainly will. You can bet your last dime on it! Much LOVE!

…God’s faithfulness has been proven for all time…by the sending of His Son Jesus Christ to die on the cross…to fulfill His promise to redeem us of our sins…how much more do we need to trust His faithfulness eh…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 June 2015 Ephesians 2:8‏‏‏

Ephesians 2:8.  For by grace are ye (you have been) saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Morning Friends and neighbours! Welcome to a rainy Tuesday morning in my area, although the weather office says it’s supposed to be 25 and sunny.

Hn! Hopefully that will happen later in the day, but in the meanwhile let’s enjoy the brilliant light and blessings provided by the Son, Jesus Christ, for we know that regardless of the weather His Son is always shining. Glory to God!

And this morning we are going to start the proceedings with a simple but heartfelt prayer from the Hour of Power Devotional. This one Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) calls ‘I Want to Improve,’ something that I know we all want to do, since it’s an essential part of our ongoing Christian advancement and maturity.

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.’

And if you sincerely prayed that prayer my people, I’m sure that the Lord is doing exactly that; making the moves necessary, setting the scene that you can improve.

I can’t resist saying it Friends: ‘What a wonderful God we serve and worship!’ If we are obedient to His will, He meets all our needs. How much more than that can we ask eh? Nothing really.

Now let’s turn to our ever intriguing and most heartwarming Bit. ‘For by grace are ye (you have been) saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:’

And there is no more gospel truth that that Friends, for it is only through God’s LOVING-kindness are we able to avoid eternal separation from Him, and death and damnation with Lucifer.

And all God’s children cried out in sincere gratitude: ‘Oh thank You Lord for sending Jesus to die on the cross for us! Thank You for Your grace and mercy which we don’t deserve, but which You nonetheless bless us with! We praise and glorify Your Holy Name this morning, and pledge to serve You faithfully all the days of our lives! Amen.’

And we had better take all those prayers we’re praying this morning very seriously my brethren, for remember that God doesn’t only listen to the words of our mouth, but even more importantly, checks out the motives of our hearts. So please don’t be found wanting when He checks our motives.

Now let’s hear some scriptures that deal with grace. Oh Friends, there are so many that we can only share a few, and I believe that we might have at least one more day with this Bit. Let’s begin with this declaration of John’s.

‘John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me (ranks higher than I): for he was before me. And of his fullness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.’ (John 1:15-17)

Words of immortal and everlasting truth my brethren!

And here are some explanations from the scholars. ‘1:15. After me: Jesus came into this world about six months after John (for human chronology, see Luke 1:56-57). He was before me: Jesus existed in eternity, so had precedence over John in authority.’

‘1:16-17. Fullness. (cf. Col.1:19): Here the fullness looks back to verse 14, “full of grace and truth.” Grace for grace means “grace heaped on grace.” Grace is evident in the Old Testament (cf. Gen.6:8; Ex.34:6) but not in the fullness now experienced in Jesus Christ. Grace is God’s unmerited favour toward sinners for their salvation (cf. Eph.2:8-9).’

Oh Friends, can you imagine the sad and sorry state we’d be in if Almighty God, our Creator and Provider had not seen fit to bestow us with His blessings of grace. Mama Mia!

Listen to Bruh Paul explain it to the Roman church nuh: ‘For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely (without any cost) by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation (a mercy seat) through faith in his blood, to declare (demonstrate) his righteousness for the remission (passing over) of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.’ (Rom.3:23-25)

Now listen to these important explanations from the scholars. ‘3:23. For all have sinned: The human need and the divine provision are alike applied universally. Come short of the glory of God: Man can exceed his own standards but never, left to himself, can he attain to God’s standard of righteousness.’

‘3:24. Being justified (Gr. dikaioumenoi) indicates being declared righteous. It signifies the believer’s judicial standing before God. Freely: There is no just cause in man to warrant justification. By his grace: Unmerited favour is bestowed through the redemption (release on payment of ransom). Christ’s death is the ransom. The sinner is released on the basis of the ransom having been paid.’

‘3:25. Through faith: Christ’s death satisfies the Father’s righteous demands. Its benefits are appropriated only through faith in His finished work. In his blood: The emphasis is not on the blood as it coursed through Christ’s veins, but as it was shed for our sins. This is how the propitiation was accomplished.’

Ah mih breddren, I do hope that those explanations of the scholars helped us achieve a better understanding of God’s grace and all that it stands for, because it is ever so necessary if we truly want to live a God-filled and righteous life.

And we’ll end there for today. I know there’s a lot of heavy stuff involved and I surely don’t want to burden us with too much stuff to read, mark and inwardly digest at once. (smile)

Now may the Lord go with us and grant us His peace, mercy, grace, compassion, wisdom and understanding, as we go out to do His work today. Much LOVE!

…who but our great and wonderful God…would heap grace and more grace…on undeserving sinners eh…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 June 2014 Acts 3:18

Acts 3:18.   But those things which God before had showed (foretold) by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should (would) suffer, he hath so fulfilled. 

Wednesday, oh Wednesday! A rose by any other name is just as sweet! 

And likewise, though our paths today may be fraught with thorns and other obstacles, because of the divine and tender mercies and the abundant blessings of our omnipotent and most magnanimous God, we Christians will do right well! For His Holy Spirit WILL lead and guide us successfully through all the rough patches of this beautiful day.

And all God’s people said a loud, hearty and grateful, ‘Thank You Lord! You are indeed the GREATEST! That’s why we serve and worship and honour You with all our hearts, souls, bodies and minds! In Jesus’ name we declare this! Amen.’

Yes Friends, the opening portion of our day is ever so important in how the rest of it unfolds! If we begin it right, and that’s by acknowledging God the Father, we will be imbued with strength, courage and confidence to face whatever comes our way, each and every day that we draw breath on God’s great planet earth. We need to thank Him early on for that wonderful blessing of life, and ask for His wise direction, His will and His plan for our steps that day.

Now my people, let’s continue to look at some of the things that happened at that fateful Pentecost time when the Holy Spirit was poured out upon all believers, as faithfully promised by the prophets, and also by our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. I believe that until we understand the things that it wrought in the early days of Christianity, we will not fully comprehend what’s happening today in our walk of faith.

Now yesterday we left off where Peter and John had healed the lame man begging at the Beautiful gate of the temple, and how he held on to them and jumped for joy, praising the Lord. And all the people ran towards them at Solomon’s porch in great wonder and amazement.

Then Peter preached his second great sermon of Pentecost, again with his focus on Jesus Christ. ‘And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? Or why look ye so earnestly (intently) on us, as though by our own power or holiness (godliness) we had made this man to walk?

The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go. But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you;

And killed the Prince (Author) of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; wherefore we are witnesses. And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him (comes through Jesus) hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.

And now brethren, I wot (know) that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers. But those things which God before had showed (foretold) by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should (would) suffer, he hath so fulfilled.’ (Acts 3:12-18)

Ah mih breddren, there are so many people out there in the cruel, evil and ungodly world today who need to hear those words, so that they can do as Peter further contends: ‘Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;

And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution (restoration) of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.’ (Acts 3:19-21)

Oh my people, as John the Baptist came out of the wilderness preaching so long ago: ‘And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand (near).’ (Matt.3:2) And furthermore, as Jesus Himself, after His baptism by John ‘began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand (near).’ (Matt.4:17)

So do we, in these last terrible days, need to get that most important message of repentance, of its urgency, across to this unbelieving world in which we currently live. Because without it, too many of God’s greatest creation will be sadly separated from Him for all eternity after Jesus returns to set up His glorious kingdom, to which all the signs point as fairly imminent.

And being ambassadors of Christ in these fateful times, it is our bounden duty to spread the word, to let people know what’s happening, by the words we speak, and the faithful way in which we live. But unfortunately, through fear, anxiety, or just plain ‘doh careness’ (smile) we are not doing the job to the best of our ability, and thus uninformed and misinformed people are suffering.

Unwisely, they are looking to the things of the world to give them succour, when we very well know that it’s only the LOVE of Jesus Christ and His Holy Spirit dwelling in us can do that on a long tem basis. So why aren’t we doing better eh Friends?

As I keep reminding us, it is ONLY we Christian folk who can bring some good changes to our wicked world. For even though the evil doers are very happy and contented with the situation, they are still working hard to make it worse, while we strong and invincible soldiers of Christ, sit around and moan and groan and complain about our rights and faith being curtailed.

Oh my people, I heard this saying on the television yesterday, referring to our upcoming Provincial Elections, and it also holds quite true of our faith situation. The caller declared that a citizen who doesn’t pray and doesn’t vote, is not entitled to complain.

The same goes for us supposed believers, who don’t do very much or anything at all to move the faith forward; we have no right to complain about what the evildoers are doing. And I’ll leave us to ponder on that thought for today. Much LOVE!

…he who is able to do…but will not do…is an abomination to the name and cause of Jesus…