Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 May 2019 Hebrews 4:19

Hebrews 4:19.   ​Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

 

Oh my people, my people, it’s certainly true that wonders never cease in this God-given and God controlled universe, but daily they increase! Wow! Would you believe that we finally had two, note TWO sun filled days without rain? Glory be! 

And would you also believe that the ole fella took advantage of that wonderful and unexpected situation by sitting, for the first time this year on my front porch in just my old bathrobe and soaking up the warm and healing rays of the early afternoon sun as it came cascading down from a bright blue heaven? 

Oh, was it ever marvellous to feel some warm sunshine after having been incapacitated for the last couple of weeks by an unrelenting cold and cough! I sat down out there for over half an hour, while God’s healing LOVE just shone down on me, as well as enjoying the wonderful sight of God’s amazing springtime handiwork with the dry branches of the much deflated and weather conflicted trees, as they finally push forth some green buds. 

It was also nice and encouraging to see people driving by in shirtsleeves with their windows down and their arms propped thereon to catch some long missed energizing rays! The only thing that spoiled my excitement was a moment when a neighbour decided to come out with his lawn mower to cut the li’l piece of grass that he calls his. 

Chuh! Does it ever annoy and irritate me when these lawn mowers get going exactly when I’m trying to rest! It began since Saturday…and yes, my li’l patch of grass needs cutting too, and no doubt my groundskeeper will show up sometime this week in the afternoon hours to disturb my afternoon rest. But I guess that’s the price one has to pay for living in the suburbia. 

Overall though the li’l stint in the hot sun was quite enjoyable…so much so that when I came back inside I felt drunk, yeh, intoxicated, inebriated, black up from the unaccustomed rays of a warm sun! Now that’s my yesterday story and I’m sticking to it! 

And what’s my today story, you ask? Well that’s simply I care about you my faithful readers so much that I am up at five in the morning to write the Bit because I have to go into the concrete jungle named Toronto for an early morning medical appointment! Wouldn’t want you to be receiving it too late now! (smile) 

Now here’s an interesting poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s titled ‘This Too Is Faith!’ Please pray with me: ‘Lord, I am desperately afraid Of tempestuous waves. Had I been on the ship The day you stilled the storm (Matt.8:23-27) I would have been the first To scream for help – This I shamelessly admit. But, Lord, this too is faith: Boldly expecting You To do something about it.’ 

Yes friends, as I read that yesterday, it occurred to me that that was quite true. Not because you are afraid and cry out for help means you don’t have faith; perhaps not enough, but merely crying out to God and expecting Him to do something to ease your situation is also a measure of faith! 

Nowhere does it say in the Good Book that we won’t ever be accosted by the enemy’s attempts to have us succumb to the negative emotion of fear, but it does say that when those times come, we must have sufficient faith to cry out to God; cry out with confidence that He can and will do something about it! 

And the Scripture Promise for that poem is also our Bit for today; these glorious and ever so encouraging words. ‘Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.’ 

Oh my faithful followers of Christ, that is such a heart-warming and encouraging scripture! Why? Because it lets us know in no uncertain terms that whatever is our problem we can always come confidently, but humbly and reverently, before God’s throne and receive His ever-available grace and mercy! 

We are Sons of God now, and that means we can go to our heavenly Father, just like we do to our earthly ones, for help and succour in our times of need! And the reason for all of that goodness and mercy is simply the work of Jesus Christ. 

Listen to these two preceding verses: ‘Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into (through) the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (sympathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (our weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.’ (Heb.4:14-15) 

Yes my brethren, Jesus suffered temptation, just like we’re doing, so He can therefore understand our problems with the enemy. The only difference is that He did not sin. Unfortunately though, we’re not that blessed, so we have to resort to Him and the Father to gain the strength to withstand the enemy’s attacks. 

And I like how the scholars explain our Bit. ‘4:16. Only Christianity provides such boldness for sinful men before a holy God, and that boldness is possible only because of our High Priest; Jesus Christ. The figure of a throne suggests a place of authority and provision. It is the place to obtain God’s grace when it is especially needed.’ And isn’t that the awesome truth my fellow saints in Christ! Glory to our great God! 

Now let’s be assured of all that we’ve spoken about today and go home sincerely declaring (right ho!) our Tuesday Mantra, loudly telling the world who and whose we are. As one 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 really mean it, then let’s go out and action it nuh, as Jesus so greatly desires of us. Much LOVE!

…in Jesus Christ…we have ALL that we’ll ever need…give Him much thanks and praise…  

P.S. Would you believe that outside is wet? Ah Lord eh! We couldn’t make three days straight of sunshine! (smile)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 December 2018 Psalm 5:11.

Psalm 5:11.   But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest (protecteth, covereth) them: let them also that LOVE thy name be joyful in thee.
 

Once more unto the breach dear friends, once more…! Yes mih people, we going to attack the supposedly impregnable ramparts of that concrete jungle called Toronto, one more time this Tuesday morning in early December! That’s why we here so early. (smile) But on a serious note though, I recently read that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find living space down there that has sunlight splashed over and around it. 

Chuh! That’s because of all the tall buildings that have gone up, and are still going up, which block out the sunlight from the lower ones. And I’ve noticed it over the summer. You can walk down one of those canyons, they are no longer streets, and the only light is what comes from directly above you, because of all the tall buildings on both sides. 

 But that’s what we call progress nuh; the more concrete we pour, the more we feel we’re progressing. Like the Joni Mitchell song, ‘Big Yellow Taxi’ so appropriately declares: ‘You tear down a paradise to put up a parking lot.’  But yuh know what friends? We believers don’t need to worry our pretty li’l heads (smile) over that situation too much, because our great God is still on the throne, still controlling the universe He created. 

And here is what Bruh David, God’s friend and man after His own heart said many moons ago: ‘But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest (protecteth, covereth) them: let them also that LOVE thy name be joyful in thee.’ Yes my fellow believers, it couldn’t get any clearer than that! If you trust in the Lord God Jehovah, then you ought to rejoice and be glad every day you awake and see the light. 

As believers in Christ we ought to shout for joy, because the Lord defends, protects us each and every day of our earthly lives! How many of us are doing that eh friends? Certainly not enough! There are too many supposed Christians walking around like ‘poor me ones’ believing that to be a believer means you must walk around like yuh suffering. 

Not at all my people! If you LOVE the Lord, you’re supposed to walk around with your head held high, a li’l swagger in your step, more confidence than arrogance, because you know where your bread is buttered! As Bruh David continues in the psalm: ‘For thou Lord wilt bless the righteous: with favour wilt thou compass (surround) him as with a shield.’ (Ps.5:12) 

As true and mature Christians, we ought to have those words written indelibly in our hearts, so we can go around and proclaim them in our everyday lives. And I guess what the Lord LOVED about Bruh David, is that despite his human failings, he never gave up on Him, was always calling out to Him, acknowledging Him as Lord and Protector. 

Hear this passage from Psalm 18 – Thanksgiving for Deliverance. Bruh David solemnly opens it by proclaiming: ‘I will LOVE thee, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength (my rock), in whom I will trust; my buckler (shield), and the horn (strength) of my salvation, and my high tower (stronghold). I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.’ (Ps.18:1-2) 

Oh mih people, if we’re true believers, then we ought to be saying all those things too, because the Lord God is in fact all those things to a true believer! But please notice that word ‘believer,’ remember it implies belief. And that’s what is wrong with too many of us supposed believers; we might believe in our heads, but not truly in our hearts. 

But that’s where the belief is really supposed to be my brethren, so that it can take effect in our lives. Remember what Jesus said, it’s from the heart that we live, either good or bad things come out of it, but the heart is the driver of our lives. (Matt.15:17-20) 

And Bruh David solidifies his argument later on in Psalm 18, when he declares: ‘As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the Lord is tried (proven): he is a buckler (shield) to all those that trust in him. For who is God save (except) the Lord (Yahweh)? Or who is a rock save our God?’ (Ps.18:30-31) Those are certainly excellent questions my friends! 

And Bruh David answers them thus: ‘It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect. He maketh my feet like hinds feet (the feet of the deer – nimble and strong), and setteth me upon my high places.’ (Ps.18:32-33) And that He most definitely does my faithful brethren! And that brings us full circle: if you LOVE the Lord and trust in Him, then you ought to be joyful and proactive, not sad and miserable and reactive. End of story! 

Now for those of us who truly LOVE the Lord and put our utmost faith and trust in Him, let’s go home telling the world, in no uncertain terms, who and whose we are, by declaring our Tuesday Mantra in strong voice with sincere hearts! 

Altogether 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 that, then let’s go out and sincerely share the LOVE of our wonderful friend Jesus with the oh so needy world nuh! Much LOVE!

…the three watchwords for Christians…belief…belief…belief…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 September 2018 Psalm 34:4.

Psalm 34:4.    ​I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.

 

Oh mercy, mercy me! Another medical journey into that confused, misguided and badly governed city of Toronto! Hence the early publication of the Bit. But it’s all to my benefit, so cheers! Let’s have a shot of caffeine to celebrate the occasion. (smile) 

Oh, this great adventure in sickness is drawing to a close…at least I think so, so hopefully it won’t be much longer before I stop having all these medical appointments. At least they will be much fewer and further between. That’s my prophetic declaration! (smile) 

But here is something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, that we all could use this fall morning. It’s titled ‘Fear Not.’ Please pray with me. ‘Again and again, dear Lord I read Your words, “Fear not.” Surely You would not say it so often If there were any reason to fear. Nor would You command it so explicitly If You could not keep me from fearing. 

God, You have given me a Fear Not For every puzzling circumstance For every possible emergency For every trial and testing Real or imagined. Yet I confess wasted hours – Even days, dear Lord When fear clutches and clobbers me Until I am physically and emotionally spent. Lord, when David cried to You, You delivered him from all his fears. On this gray-sky morning I kneel before You with David’s cry. O my Father, I cannot believe You would be less kind to me Than you were to David.’ 

And NO, God will NEVER turn away or be less kind to one of His very own children! That’s His ever-faithful promise! So we can be assured that whatever fear that’s troubling us, if we take it to God in prayer, we will receive relief and succour from it. 

But isn’t it somewhat troubling that despite all the assurances and commands of our heavenly Father, re not to fear, we’re still such a fearful people? ‘Fear not!’ was one of the most used phrases by Jesus in His earthly sojourn. And when He said, ‘O ye of little faith,’ meant that we were also fearful, because faith dispels fear. 

And the Bible promise for that poem is also our Bit for today; the immortal words of Bruh David from Psalm 34: ‘I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.’ Yeh friends, simple, but ever so life changing words! And those from a great man of God! 

That means, although we should not be always afraid, when those times arise, we should NEVER be afraid to call on our helpful and ever-faithful God for help. Note, Bruh David said, he called out in desperation, and the Lord heard and helped him. And He WILL do the same for each and every one who calls out to Him in all sincerity and truth! 

And this is how Bruh David continues after our Bit: ‘They looked unto him, and were lightened (radiant): and their faces were not ashamed. This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them. 

O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the Lord, ye his saints: for there is no want (lack) to them that fear him. The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the Lord shall not want (lack) any good thing.’ (Ps.34:4-10) 

And all God’s children declared a loud, proud and ever grateful: ‘Praise the Lord for his everlasting goodness to the children of men!’ Yes friends, we know it’s the truth, even though we don’t always follow it! 

And that ‘fear’ we’re talking about is not ‘fear’ in the sense of being physically afraid of God, though we should have a touch of that because of the awesome things He can do, but it’s a sense of reverence, of acknowledgement of His strength and power and goodness and LOVE towards us. 

And the scholars offer this interesting comment on ‘Psalm 34. The historical background of this acrostic psalm (Hebrew poem of which the lines begin with the successive letters of the alphabet) is related in 1 Samuel 21:10-15. (Bruh David flees to Gath from Saul’s many attempts to kill him.) It bears all the marks of the testimony of one who narrowly escaped death, just as the passage in Samuel describes. As such, it contains the praise and testimony of the one who was redeemed  (vs.1-10) and the seasoned instruction that can stem from such deliverance (vs.11-22).’ 

Now let’s hear some of that seasoned instruction: ‘Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the Lord. What man is he that desireth life, and LOVETH many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile (deceit). Depart from evil, and do good: seek peace and pursue it.’ (Ps.34:11-14) 

That’s wise advice indeed from someone who experienced it! So let’s remember that today nuh, as we go home now declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice with sincere hearts: ‘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’re truly sincere, we’ll go out and share it all with others, as Jesus desires of us. Much LOVE!

…between fear and faith…there’s Jesus…Glory be…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 September 2018 Hebrews 13:8.

Hebrews 13:8.   ​Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.

Ah friends, the vacation is over! I’m talking about my vacation from medical appointments in the city. Hn! Amazingly I had none last month. In fact I only had a couple in my area for the whole month! Wow! But that ‘s over now, and it’s why you’re getting the Bit so early. I have to journey into the fair city of Toronto for a mid morning doctor’s meet and greet. (smile)

And that’s just going to tie up the entire day! Steups! What with the travel time and waiting in the doctors office and whatever else crops up, by the time I get back home it will be late afternoon. And then to make things worse, I open my e-mail and find that they’ve changed the set up. Chuh man! I have to get accustomed to a whole new way of working. And the sad part is that the changes are always worse than what you had before.

But griping isn’t going to make it go away – and it’s free too. (smile) So here goes with something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin; something that we all need to constantly remember. It’s titled ‘The God Who Never Changes.’

Please pray with me: ‘It is irrefutably true: We have lost many opportunities that can never be retrieved. We have made foolish choices that can never be rectified. But we dare not live life in a spirit of despair and defeat. As children of God we need to understand that all God’s discipline has but one objective: To bring us to the end of ourselves and back to Him!

His desire is always to restore us, never to reject us. His goal is always to use us, never to ignore us. With confession, renewed surrender, and a heart that is fixed on Him, God will do in us whatever He needs to do to make us whatever He wants us to be. Every necessary change God chooses to make is wonderfully possible because of Jesus, who never changes.’

And all God’s people declared a loud, proud and grateful shout of ‘Glory to God for His never changing character and wonderful ways!’ Yeh friends, we have to be eternally grateful that our God never changes, else what a mess we’d be in, with Him moving from one position or character to another as the spirit moved Him.

But thankfully, as the Bible Promise for the poem above and our Bit declare: ‘Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.’ Glory be my people! Jesus is a stalwart, an unchanging champion, therefore we can put ALL of our faith, trust and hope in Him, because what we see we will always get, it won’t change form one moment or day to another!

Knowing that our Foundation Stone, the Rock, the Fortress upon which we build our lives is unchangeable certainly breeds stability and trust my brethren! Yes, things within God’s world might change, but God doesn’t. Hear this powerful assurance of God’s, through the mouth of the prophet Isaiah.

‘Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax (grow) old like a garment, and they that dwell within shall die in like manner: but my salvation shall be for ever, and my righteousness shall not be abolished (broken). (Is.51:6)

Ah mih people, the things that God made, the heavens, the earth and people shall disappear and fade and die, but the Lord’s salvation and His righteousness will live forever! What wonderful, reassuring news!

And if that verse didn’t touch your hearts (smile), then listen as Isaiah continues: ‘Hearken unto me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law; fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings. For the moth shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm shall eat them like wool: but my righteousness shall be for ever, and my salvation from generation to generation.’ (Is.51:7-8)

Ah mih breddren, if that did not touch you, then you don’t know righteousness and the law of the Lord is not in your heart, and for your great benefit, you’d better right that situation as soon as possible. Because here’s what will happen eventually: ‘Therefore the redeemed of the Lord shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their head: they shall obtain gladness and joy; and sorrow and mourning (sighing) shall flee away.’ (Is.51:11)

And the scholars offer this explanation of all that: ‘51:1-16. Heavens shall vanish away…and the earth: Isaiah looks down the corridor of human history to a time when the heavens (atmosphere) and the earth will be no more. He likens the earth to an old…garment, meaning the earth will one day wear out (a fact borne out by the second law of thermodynamics) and only the ransomed and redeemed shall return with singing unto Zion and experience everlasting joy.’

Oh what a joyful time that will be my fellow believers…but only for those who believe in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour! So I’d strongly advise you to get with the programme immediately, if you want to be one of the ransomed and redeemed singing with everlasting joy in the not too distant future! Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are.

In strong voice, and with sincere sense of purpose: ‘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 having said all of that, to be true to our calling, we now have to go out and share it! Much LOVE!

…only through Jesus…will you come to everlasting singing…salvation…and joy…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 April 2018 Matthew 28:20b.

Matthew 28:20b.    and, lo, I am with you alway(s), even unto the end of the world.

Aw friends, what kind of crazy, evil, ungodly, unsafe world are we living in eh, when in broad daylight a young man can drive his vehicle into a crowd of innocent people and kill nine or ten of them and injure a whole lot more? Or another young person can enter a restaurant and just open fire with his AK 15, or some such firearm and kill four people? 

The first incident happened in Toronto, the northern section of the city yesterday, and the second down in Nashville, U.S, a couple days ago. It seems we’re safe NOWHERE on the planet. Steups! And then the popular excuse is that these people have mental issues. Chuh! Well then too large a proportion of our society has mental problems! And if that’s a fact, then why aren’t we addressing them properly eh? 

Ah mih people, nowadays our favourite pastime seems to be talk; talk for just talk sake, and get nothing done. Our society is fast going to hell in a basket and our politicians and power brokers still only seem to care about getting in power and lining their own pockets. It’s a good thing that we believers have Jesus and His many faithful promises to hang on to yes, otherwise I don’t know what would happen to us nuh. 

And as we continue looking at some of the many wonderful promises that our faithful God has made us, we open with one of the most steadfast and uncompromising, that contained in our Bit: ‘and, lo, I am with you alway(s), even unto the end of the world.’ 

What a powerful promise that is my fellow believers, from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ as He sent the disciples out to proselytize the world! And it’s that kind of stuff that we need to hang on to as we navigate this unsafe and crazy world; look to heaven rather than to mankind who is as evil as the night is dark. 

And if that doesn’t quell your worries, then listen to this promise. ‘Let your conversation (conduct) be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath saith, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Heb.13:5) 

Glory be my breddren! What wonderful words of assurance given to us by our God and our Creator and Saviour. The author of Hebrews is there reiterating God’s promise to Joshua when He made him leader of the Israelites after the death of Moses: ‘There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life, as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Josh.1:5) 

However friends, there is ONE thing God asked of Joshua, and is also asking of us in these dangerous and trying times: ‘Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left that thou mayest prosper (have success, or act wisely) whithersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:6) 

Yes my fellow believers, regardless of the number of great promises God has made us, we still have to take them to heart and stand strong under them. That’s our part of the bargain: stand strong and steadfast in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour! But that’s exactly what a lot of us are not doing, thus our fears, worries and anxieties every day of our lives. 

Now hear these marvellous words of Bruh Paul to the Roman church on the separation of Christ from His people. ‘Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? 

As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the LOVE of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ (Rom.8:34-39) 

Oh precious people of God, if that powerful assurance of Christ’s irremovable presence from our lives doesn’t move and reassure you, then I don’t know what will nuh! That’s possibly one of the greatest promises a believer has to hang on to. Once Christ comes into our lives, we cannot be separated from Him. He will NEVER leave or forsake us, unless we push Him away or turn against Him. 

Therefore friends, in these troubled times, I implore us to hold on tightly to the promises of our ever-faithful God, to stand strong and courageous as He asks of us, so that we can conquer this evil word in His name. Now let’s go home showing the world that we are indeed standing strong in Christ. Let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with much vim and vigour. 

As one loud and purposeful voice now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

And if we’re sincere, then let’s go out and share Jesus’ LOVE and everlasting friendship with world, as He desires of us. Much LOVE!

…standing on the promises of God…standing safe and secure… on the promises of God, my Lord…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 April 2018 Matthew 10:28.

Matthew 10:28.    And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Well hello there mih Scrip-Bit family! How goes it with you all this rainy day Thursday eh? I hope it goes better with you than with me, because the ole fella is shaking it a tad rough after spending the last two days running around in the concrete jungle called Toronto for doctor’s appointments and tests. That’s why the last two Bits were so early. (smile) 

But what a mish mash that place is; the roads are full of potholes, the traffic jams are constant…! Brother! I don’t see how people can handle that ridiculous commute for five days every week nuh. But I guess you have to do what you have to do to make a living. 

The good news though my brethren, is that the Lord’s generosity has not stopped flowing…and it never will! His ongoing showering of grace, mercy, LOVE and forgiveness on His people is guaranteed for all time. So though we may occasionally face adversity and rough times, we know for sure that our heavenly Father is right in the thick of it with us, and has promised to bring us out better than before. 

Glory to God my brethren! What a wonderful God we serve and worship! Give Him some thanks and praise nuh! 

And I just noticed an interesting and rather appropriate quote here amongst the confusion of papers on the desk in front of me. It’s attributed to one Alex Boyer, and it says: ‘When the body gets tired, you fight with your soul.’ 

And isn’t that the living truth friends! The soul is much stronger than the body, though the body leads in the fight for survival. And when the body fails or falters, it’s the soul’s job, the spiritual aspect of our humanity, to take up the battle and lead us to victory in Jesus’ name. 

I guess that’s why Jesus gave His disciples the fateful warning found in Today’s Bit. ‘And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.’ Ah friends, what wise and wonderful advice from our Saviour Himself; advice that is also applicable to us today. 

Hear how the scholars explain that section. ‘10:25-31. Beelzebub refers to Satan himself, the ultimate evil spirit. The disciples are told to fear…not. The disciples’ enemies can only take their physical lives, which cannot prevent their blessed resurrection to life everlasting. 

In other words, Jesus reminded them that it was more important to fear Him who had authority over the soul as well as over the body and who can bring both to eternal condemnation in hell (Gr. Gehenna). Notice that God is the One who has authority to cast men into hell, and not Satan, who will himself be ultimately cast into everlasting fire.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, it’s only Almighty God; our Creator, Controller and Provider who can sentence us to a lifetime of hell fire and damnation! And I’m sure none of us want to suffer that terrible fate. Therefore, we need to live a life down here on earth that is subject to His law and will, if we want to see His glorious face at the end of our earthly sojourn. 

Listen to how Jesus continues His warning to the disciples. ‘Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing (1/16 of a denarius – a penny)? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.’ (Matt.10:29:-31) 

Oh mih breddren, what a glorious reassurance that is from our Master! We are God’s greatest creation; worth more than many sparrows, and even the very hairs on our head are numbered. Wow! The Lord knows it all and is committed to keeping us together, even though we sometimes falter. 

However, these next two verses are the ones that will cement His decision. ‘Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.10:32-33) There it is in black and white my people! If you deny Christ, He will deny you before His heavenly Father. 

And the scholars offer this good explanation. ’10:32-37. Confess me means “Acknowledge that you belong to me.” In reality, secret discipleship is a practical impossibility. Jesus constantly called for an open confession of Himself by His followers. That our confession is to be before men clearly indicates that a public confession of true Christian faith is a virtual necessity. 

The warning whosoever shall deny me is a comprehensive historical aorist tense, (hn!) referring not to one moment of denial (such as Peter’s), but to an entire lifelong resistance to Christ. Therefore a single act of denial does not make one unworthy of being a disciple, but a refusal to confess Christ at all eliminates one from being a true follower of Jesus Christ.’  

So all of us who claim to belong to Christ, but refuse to acknowledge Him in public, yuh better had think again! But for those of us who gladly acknowledge Him in public and enjoy His wonderful company, let’s go home now declaring the manifold grace and mercy we enjoy in our Thursday Blessings. 

In strong and sincere voice now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Yeh mih people all of that is ours, and not just to hoard for ourselves, but to share generously with the less fortunate. So let’s go out and do that now nuh. Much LOVE!

…a true Christian is one…who is not afraid or ashamed to tell the world…and also show the world…that he is living and dying for Christ…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 February 2018 1 Peter 1:3.

1 Peter 1:3.   Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us unto a lively (living, constant) hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

Well my faithful brethren, it’s Sunday once again, the Lord’s Day, and with it come certain commitments: namely to gather in the Lord’s sanctuary in true fellowship to praise and worship Him with humble and sincere hearts.  And though we are scheduled to get a bundle of snow in the Toronto area today, we must not let that stop us from gathering in the Lord’s sanctuary to exalt and glorify His holy name and receive His strength, confidence and assurance for the upcoming week. 

Glory to God my people! When believers get together to worship the Lord…Chuh! There’s nothing on earth like it. We sing and dance and pray and praise and listen to His awesome word that’s indisputable truth! Wow! How could any other gathering beat that eh? 

And as always, we shall open today’s proceedings with song. The Lord likes prayer, but I believe He is partial and sentimental to getting His glory and praise delivered in song. (smile) And that’s exactly how all the elders and other heavenly populace constantly praise Him. So let’s do just that by offering up a sacrifice of praise with our lips as we sincerely belt out the old Isaacs Watts favourite, ‘Our God, our Help in ages past.’ 

And please note, it seems like Isaac wrote it as ‘Our God,’ and not ‘O,’ or ‘Oh God,’ as has become popular. And as our voices rise to heaven in sweet song, let’s consider each word and sentiment we sing and realize, admit that they are gospel truth. 

As one earthly host now: ‘Our God, our Help in ages past, our Hope for years to come, our Shelter from the stormy blast, and our eternal Home. Under the shadow of Thy throne Thy saints have dwelt secure; sufficient is Thine arm alone, and our defense is sure. Before the hills in order stood or earth received its frame, from everlasting Thou art God, to endless years the same. 

A thousand ages in Thy sight are like an ev’ning gone, short as the watch that ends the night before the rising sun. Time, like an ever-rolling stream, bears all its sons away; they fly forgotten, as a dream dies at the op’ning day. Our God, our Help in ages past, our Hope for years to come, be Thou our Guide while life shall last, and our eternal Home!’ 

Yes friends, EVERY sentiment we just sang there is the living truth, and I hope it just melted our hearts, but simultaneously had it bursting with joy and LOVE for our wonderful God! 

No wonder Peter could so confidently declare in our Bit and following: ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us unto a lively (living, constant) hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.’ (1 Pet.1:3-5) 

Oh friends, if there is one thing we’re certain of is hope of salvation because of Jesus’ resurrection! Glory Be! Now listen to the scholars: ‘1:3-5. The portrayal of salvation looks to the future. The author of salvation is portrayed as the blessed God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. The work of salvation (vs.3-5) is described as to its effect. 

Hath begotten us again refers to a new stage of life that begins at salvation. This lively hope has no element of uncertainty, for it is guaranteed by Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. The believer’s inheritance is described as incorruptible, imperishable or indestructible, and undefiled (i.e., morally untainted). 

That fadeth not away, means it is not subject to the ravages of time. Further it is reserved, that is, it has been preserved in the past and still is in heaven. Kept is a present passive participle – we are secure because we are continually guarded by God, who never relaxes His vigil. Salvation here refers to final salvation, that is, deliverance from the presence of sin, and into the presence of God.’ 

How could it get any better than that eh my people? When we place our sincere trust in Jesus we end up in a new stage of life, salvation, with an assured inheritance that cannot be corrupted, does not deteriorate, is morally untainted, and is specially reserved for us in heaven! And on top of all that, we are guarded night and day by an omnipotent Deity, who never sleeps. 

Mama Mia! Now I don’t know about anybody else nuh, but to me, that’s an offer I cannot refuse! And I do hope that ALL of you reading today’s Bit will feel the same way, because the other option is a terrible one; separation from God, and companionship with the evil Lucifer and his legion of evil cohorts.  

But to get that lively hope friends, we need to be born again. As Jesus explained to Nicodemus: ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again (from above), he cannot see the kingdom of God.’ (John 3:3) 

And when Nicodemus looked puzzled and asked about physically entering again into one’s mother’s womb, and being born again, Jesus clarified it for him. ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.’ (John 3:5-6) 

So friends, if we are not born of the Spirit, have a supernatural spiritual birth in the name of Jesus, most likely we will be excluded  from heaven. And that is certainly the worst thing that could ever happen to a human being. So please be warned, and wisely take the necessary steps to assure that your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, for therein lies salvation and eternal life. Much LOVE!

…as for me and mine…brother…we are definitely riding shotgun with Jesus…

 

 

 

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