Today’s Scrip-Bit   13 September 2021 Ecclesiastes 4:9.

Ecclesiastes 4:9.     Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. 

Come down Monday, come on down! Let us walk in unity along life’s convoluted and ofttimes difficult pathway. For only together can we be victorious. Alone we will most surely be defeated. That’s why the wise author of Ecclesiastes, who simply refers to himself as the Preacher, but whom most scholars believe is Cousin Sol, tells us about two being better than one, and three, an even stronger cord. 

Listen to these words of everlasting wisdom. ‘Then I returned, and I saw vanity (futility) under the sun. There is one alone, and there is not a second (a companion); yea, he hath neither child nor brother: yet is there no end of all his labour; neither is his eye satisfied with riches; neither saith he. For whom do I labour, and bereave (deprive) my soul of good? This is also vanity (futility), yea, it is a sore travail (grievous toil).’ (Eccl. 4:7-8) And is that ever the gospel truth! It is a useless, futile task when you are labouring by yourself for only yourself! 

However, the Preacher wisely continues: ‘Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow (companion): but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up.’ (Eccl. 4:9-10) Now that’s not rocket science friends, but mere common sense; two people working and walking in harmony and unity are always better than one, because each can help the other when they fall, either literally or figuratively. 

But when you’re on your lonesome, it’s often impossible to get up if you fall. Just goes to show that we all need help to live this simple, yet complicated life. As the wisdom of the world says; no man is an island, he can’t do it all himself. But the preacher is not done yet. (smile) He maintains his claim of togetherness being oh so important: ‘Again if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone?’ (Eccl. 4:11) Now that’s a very good question. And if anyone can answer it, please let me know. (smile) 

Meanwhile, the Preacher is just warming up to his argument: ‘And if one prevail against him (though one may be overpowered by another), two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.’ (Eccl. 4:12). Mama Mia! What incredible words of wisdom! So life is not completely useless, futile or meaningless after all! That is, if you are in worthwhile company. 

As the scholars explain: ‘4:7-12. The toil of the miser is futile, especially when he toils only for himself. On the other hand, two are better than one because they have a good return (vs. 9); they can help each other (vs. 10); they can provide mutual warmth (vs. 11); and they double their strength (or triple it, as in the case of three friends (vs. 12).’ 

Now, here are some interesting insights on the subject from commentator Tamara Chamberlain, found on the crosswalk.com website. She says: ‘One of the unique things about Ecclesiastes is that its wisdom is beneficial regardless of your belief in God. The wisdom shown in these four verses can be agreed with, even if you don’t consider yourself a follower of Jesus. There are many other non-Christian proverbs that support the wisdom stated in these verses. Proverbs like, “two heads are better than one” or “no man is an island.” 

The writer of Ecclesiastes penned these truths thousands of years before the similar proverbs we commonly know today. It truly is amazing to see the way the truths revealed in Scripture are not only true because we find them in the Bible, but because the truth is the truth… The principle of two being better than one can be applied to any partnership or aspect of life. To be alone isn’t necessarily seen as negative, but when you add another person to your life the situation is usually better. One of the keywords in these verses is “better.” The writer is stating that a better way, a more fruitful way to live life is alongside other people… 

The statement of two being better than one is true in many different life circumstances all across time… From the very beginning, God created us to be in relationship with others. Not only are we to live in relationship with other people but with God as well. The image is explained in Ecclesiastes 4:12) “A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” The three-strand cord is understood to be unity between yourself, God, and another person.’ 

Yes friends, it’s all about unity…with God and with each other! And that’s what our world, our church and our lives are sadly lacking in these turbulent and ever so dangerous times. And the only way to fix it is by sincerely attempting to grow that unity between you, me, and God again. And we can begin to close that needless and foolish rift, right now, by coming together and raising up our Monday Morning Battle Hymn to Almighty God, and acknowledging His sovereignty over the universe. 

So as one sincere voice: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

And as always, the answers to our prayers will be determined by the way we keep the promises we make to Almighty God! Much LOVE!

…it’s only in good relationship with God and man…can our earthly purpose be truly fulfilled…                                                                                                            

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8              

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 September 2021 Malachi 3:6.

Malachi 3:6.     For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.

Well, the summer’s done now: school’s open once more, adults back to work, whatever can open is open. But unfortunately, many of our problems are still there; the virus and its ever-expanding family, the strife, the natural disasters and their consequent fall out…and all the other negative activity that’s choosing this particular time to come against us! And sadly, we don’t seem to be handling the situation properly, for there’s no unity, no agreement on how to go about solving our problems, thus our efforts are unsuccessful. 

But friends, let’s be thankful for the one constant in our everchanging lives and world: that’s Jehovah God, our Creator and Provider! Let’s be thankful that He doesn’t change…and it’s not me who says so, but the Lord Himself. Yes, He declared it long ago, through the prophet Malachi. ‘For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.’ (Mal. 3:6) And it’s only through His awesome grace, mercy and great LOVE for us that we have not already been destroyed, since we have delighted in moving away from His ordinances and living an ever-increasing sinful and evil lifestyle. 

And I believe that our chickens are now coming home to roost in these strange, unexpected and trying times. And if we ever hope to be rid of our many problems, or even lessen them significantly, then it’s absolutely time for us to turn back to the God of our forefathers, for He is the ONLY One who can help us solve them. The sad part is that many of us are very aware of that fact, but yet we hem and haw and find all sorts of excuses not to turn back to Almighty God, to worship and reverence Him in sincerity and truth. 

I don’t know what we are afraid of. Are we putting the foolish and short-term pleasures of this wicked world above the eternal and everlasting benefits and security of our souls? It certainly seems so, since many of us, in this time of tribulation, are turning away from God, rather than turning towards Him, the God of our salvation. Now listen to some more interesting words from the prophet Malachi, re the coming day of the Lord, which the scholars tell us refers to the time of the Great Tribulation, ‘which is in view as the birth pangs for the millennial kingdom.’ 

Malachi declares: ‘For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.’ (Mal. 4:1) Now I think that says quite clearly that the proud and wicked will suffer irreparable harm when the Lord comes. But for some reason, many of us believe it when the Lord says that He will do good, but then erroneously think that because the Lord is good and LOVING and all that, He won’t really destroy the proud and the wicked. 

Friends, that’s a rather foolish theory, because you’ve seen down through history how God has indeed destroyed the wicked. Just look at what He did to the Israelites, His chosen people, in the wilderness when they began complaining and behaving foolishly, hating the manna that they were being divinely given and wishing they back in bondage in Egypt. The Good Book says: ‘And the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died.’ (Num. 21:6) 

Yes my people, whatever the Lord says He will do, He will do, be it good or bad in our eyes, for there is always good reason for His actions. He has been warning us since the beginning of the Good Book that the wicked will be destroyed and the faithful saved, but we obviously don’t take His warnings seriously otherwise our world would never be as sinful and evil as it currently is. 

And we obviously have lost a lot of our brain power, or logical thinking as we have evolved down through the years, for the Israelites when they found themselves in hard times because of their sinful behaviour, quickly repented and returned to the God of their forefathers, like they did with that snake attack. They ran to Moses and repented and asked him to pray for them, and the Lord told Moses to make a brass serpent and hang it upon a pole, and whoever got bit by a snake could look upon the serpent and live.’ (Num. 21:7-9) 

But we brainiacs of this modern world, think we invented ourselves and we don’t need God, thus we try to push Him out of our society. Well good luck with that! It won’t ever happen! Because the Lord won’t allow it to. Why can’t we learn from the fall of the very fool we follow in our wicked and sinful behaviour nuh? Lucifer the archangel had great hopes of becoming El Numero Uno and overthrowing Almighty God his Creator. So, he and some other foolish heavenly creations rebelled. And what happened to them? They were ungraciously kicked out of heaven to walk the earth in shame and disgrace and to eventually be destroyed. 

But still, knowing the lying, deceitful and wicked nature of those rebellious creations, we listen to them and follow them, going against the dictates of our Creator. And yet, we don’t think that we will be eventually destroyed, just like them, if we don’t turn from our evil ways before the end of our mortal lives. Hn! 

The problem here my people, is that we don’t know when our mortal lives will end. It can happen at any time, and very often the grim reaper gives us absolutely no warning. That makes it necessary for us to be always prepared. For if we die without accepting Jesus as our Lord and Saviour we will end up separated from God, our worst nightmare. Only thing is, it won’t be a nightmare then, but a stark and frightening reality! 

However, if we wisely turn back to the Lord, listen to His promise through Malachi. ‘But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth and grow up as calves of the stall (grow up fat like stall fed calves). And ye shall tread down (trample) the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the Lord of hosts.’ (Mal. 4:2-3) 

And He did it friends, when He sent Jesus Christ (the Sun of righteousness, the Messiah) to earth to die in propitiation for our sins. So please believe that God is a keeper of His promises, be they in our favour or not, and let’s wise up and realize that the many problems we and our world face will not be solved or even lessened until we once again acquire a true reverence and LOVE for Almighty God! 

Now, for those of us who have already done that, let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are, who we belong to lock, stock and barrel. (smile) 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 having made those significant statements, it now behooves us to go out and share that awesome friendship and LOVE of Jesus with others who don’t know Him. Much LOVE!

…these times are…the beginning of sorrows…(Matt. 24:8)                                                                                                     

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8            

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 September 2021 Matthew 6:21.

Matthew 6:21.     For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Oh my fellow saints in Christ, on this Labour Day Monday, may ‘Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord (and Saviour).’ (2 Pet. 1:2) Yes friends, we do need a lot of grace and peace in these trying times, times when everyone seems to be angry, displeased and dissatisfied over some thing or the other. And the only way to get those two precious commodities is through sincere belief in the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who sacrificed His sinless life on the cross of Calvary to pay our sin debt in full! 

All praise and glory be to that wonderful Saviour of ours! He’s promised that despite our circumstances, if we believe in Him, the Father will grant us His divine grace, and thus peace, through all the vicissitudes of life. And let’s remember that it’s by God’s divine grace that we are saved, through faith; and that not of ourselves; it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.’ (Eph. 2:8-9) Or as Saint Therese of Lisieux so wisely put it a while back: ‘Everything is grace!’ 

And it certainly is friends, for all that we are and do, all that we have and will ever have, from the breath of life flowing through our bodies, to the eternal life we receive through believing in Christ, is based on the divine grace of our heavenly Father. That’s God’s unmerited favour, that nothing we can ever do will be good enough to deserve it. And all God’s people gave a loud and grateful shout of ‘Thank You Lord for Your awesome gift of grace!’ 

Sadly though, too many of the earth’s inhabitants don’t know of Jehovah God and His wonderful goodness to the children of men. And even worse yet, too many of those who do know of Him, refuse to accept that divine grace He offers, through faith in His Son Jesus Christ. Now that’s to their detriment, for it will only lead to eternal separation from God, which is the worst thing that can ever happen to a human soul. 

Oh my people, how many times do I have to reiterate that eh, before you all believe me? Eternal separation from God means not being in heaven with Him till eternity, but with Satan, the Devil, Beelzebub, or whatever name you choose to call him, facing damnation in the fiery halls of hell, and eventually being cast into the lake of fire with all the other unbelievers. Now tell me, are the sinful pleasures of this world truly worth such a terrible end? I don’t think so friends. And if you stop for a moment and really consider the situation, you will also realize that the pleasures of this world are not worth such a disastrous end, and can never be better than those found in heaven. 

That’s why in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus adamantly warned: ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt. 6:19-21) 

And we all know that’s the gospel truth friends, for wherever we store whatever we treasure, we will always be thinking of and contemplating on it. So, it’s much better if we store up treasure in heaven, that is, rewards for faithful service, where moth and rust nor any negative thing can destroy them, than store up earthly stuff, that’s useful today and old and rusty or stolen tomorrow. Yes my brethren, earthly things don’t last. Just look at any junkyard nuh. Everything in there was once brand new, shiny and useful, but like the shine on all earthly things it soon wore off and they became old and rusty, of no further use to anyone. 

And to further illuminate us, please listen to the warning James gave to the rich, those who stored up earthly treasures. ‘Go to ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted (have rotted), and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver is cankered (corroded); and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days.’ (James 5:1-3) 

Sadly my brethren, that same earthly treasure that the rich have laid up for their retirement, is what the Lord will use against them in the last days, for a lot of it was treacherously and deceitfully gained; robbing the poor and not paying the labourer a fair wage. That’s the basic story friends; don’t store up too much useless earthly stuff, which you will die and leave here anyway. But try and store up as many rewards for faithful service as you can in heaven, where you will eventually go and enjoy them – providing you accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, because He is the ONLY Way to the Father in heaven! 

Now, let’s talk to the Father, pour out our troubles and problems to Him, the ONLY One who can help us to put a lasting fix on them. So as one strong voice, let’s invoke our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now let’s remember that all our prayers will fall on deaf ears, if we don’t keep the promises we just made. Much LOVE!

…earth’s treasures are temporary…short lived…but heaven’s treasures are eternal…run from everlasting to everlasting…                                                                                                  

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8           

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 August 2021 Proverbs 10:12.

Proverbs 10:12.      Hatred stirreth up strifes: but LOVE covereth all sins.

Here comes Monday, here comes Monday, ringing in the penultimate day of August! And with the end of August, our summer weather will soon fizzle out to nothing. But be it hot, cold, or in between, I believe the important thing is for us to learn to enjoy whatever kind of weather we may experience, once it means that we are still alive, and still enjoying the wonderful life that Jesus died for us to have! 

And please note that I said, ‘learn to enjoy,’ for that kind of thing does not come naturally. We have to make a conscious decision to not let it steal the joy and peace we find in Jesus, who is our strength, and enables us to overcome every circumstance that comes against us. And with the sad and angry state of the world, I believe today is a rather appropriate time to consider these wise words of Cousin Sol: ‘Hatred stirreth up strifes: but LOVE covereth all sins.’ (Prov. 10:12) 

Oh my people, I doubt that there’s ever been a time in our world when we have needed LOVE more desperately than right now! The anger, greed, jealousy, resentment, hatred and all the other negative producing emotions are currently at an all-time high. And only an immense shower of LOVE will, or can stop it from further destroying our world. That’s because LOVE is the greatest attribute of our great God Jehovah; the attribute that caused Him to send His Son Jesus to earth to die for our sins. 

As the Good Book so truthfully recounts: ‘But God commendeth (demonstrated) his LOVE toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Rom. 5:8) And it is ONLY LOVE that will keep us from doing further damage to our world and to each other. Why is that you ask? Because LOVE is the perfect antidote for all negative emotions and reactions! So let’s see what the scriptures have to tell us about that marvellous thing called LOVE nuh. 

Bruh Paul puts it this way to the church at Corinth in what we refer to as the LOVE Chapter: ‘Charity (LOVE) suffereth long, and is kind…envieth not…vaunteth not (does not brag on) itself…is not puffed up (arrogant), Doth not behave itself unseemly (rudely), seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil (keeps no counts of evil); Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things…never faileth.’ (1 Cor. 13:4-8) 

Oh my, my…LOVE is certainly the great mover and shaker! That’s why Peter could confidently declare to the church: ‘And above all things have fervent charity (LOVE) among yourselves: for charity (LOVE) shall cover a multitude of sins.’ (1 Pet. 4:8) And that’s the gospel truth friends; if we have sincere LOVE for each other, it will clean up so many of our wrongful thoughts and actions. 

And we can never talk about LOVE in the scriptures and leave out these immortal words of John from his first epistle. ‘Beloved, let us LOVE one another; for LOVE is of God; and every one that LOVETH is born of God, and knoweth God. He that LOVETH not knoweth not God; for God is LOVE. In this was manifested the LOVE of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is LOVE, not that we LOVED God, but that he LOVED us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so LOVED us, we ought also to LOVE one another.’ (1 John 4:7-11) 

Matter fix friends! Story done! (smile) So all that’s left for us to do now is to inculcate that godly attribute of LOVE into our daily lives, so that we can lessen the hatred and strife that’s engulfing our world. And yes, I know that’s sometimes difficult to do, but again, if we truly have Jesus in our hearts, and we seriously desire to live for Him, then, as we said earlier on, we can do whatever we need to do, through His awesome strength and power. And we can begin right now by going to Him in prayer and laying all of our problems before Him, asking for His divine help. 

So as one strong voice, let’s offer up our Monday Morning Battle Hymn to heaven nuh. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now friends, please remember that the Lord’s answer will pivot entirely on our keeping those promises we’ve just made. Much LOVE!

…and now abideth faith, hope, LOVE…these three…but the greatest of these is…LOVE… (1 Cor. 13:13)                                                                                                                                         

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8    

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 August 2021 Numbers 23:19a.

Numbers 23:19a.     God is not man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: 

These weeks passing too quickly for me yes friends! We are already into the middle of August, and we just finish celebrating the 1st of August long holiday weekend. (smile) That means fall, or autumn is just around the corner. But them’s the breaks, time waits on no one, and we must therefore conclude that this Monday in the middle of August is another excellent opportunity for us to take the bull by the horns, grab the baton and run with it, put into motion, the amazing plan that our wonderful God has designed for us from time everlasting! 

And yes, we have used a lot of clichés back there, but yuh know what, things become clichés because they are either the truth, or help us to understand the truth better. And the greatest truth in this universe is the Word of God found in His holy book, the Bible, our blueprint, our guide, our map for earthly living! So when we read in it, things like: ‘For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end (a future and a hope).’ (Jer. 29:11) 

We know, we are totally assured that we are hearing the honest to goodness truth., because it comes from the Word of our God. Our Creator has good plans for each one of us, plans He created us to fulfill. And you are even further empowered to believe His Word, when it says: ‘God is not man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? Or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?’ (Num. 23:19) 

What a confidence builder that verse is my brethren! Our God has no need to lie, because He is omnipotent, possesses the power and the ability to do whatever He says He is going to do! As Jesus said to His disciples, talking about a camel passing through the eye of a needle: ‘With men, this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible.’ (Matt. 19:26) And we need to remember that most salient fact my people. Nothing is too big or too small for our God to do! He can do anything and everything! Therefore, there’s no situation He cannot put us into or take us out of. 

But I want to go back to that verse from Numbers about God not lying, because the scholars offer an interesting explanation of it. ‘23:19. The immutability (unchangeability) of God is stated. The word repent is parallel to lie and is coloured in tone by this very association. Here His repenting is related to falsehood. The concept of the truth of Yahweh is related to immutability (His unchanging nature). Since God is truth, He does not lie; in fact, He cannot lie: He is unchanging. God is utterly different from man. Something that comes far too easily for many men is impossible for Almighty God. He cannot lie (cf. Is. 31:2; 51:6,8; Jer. 4:28; Mal. 3:6).’ 

Oh friends, those are some good verses for you to look up, I just did, and they are all interesting, revolving around the Lord’s unchanging nature and the keeping of His word. But I will only spoon feed us the last one from Malachi, (smile) which we all ought to know anyway. ‘For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.’ (Mal. 3:6) And we better had be thankful for that yes my people, because just like the Lord’s mercy and LOVE are overwhelming, so is His wrath, and you definitely don’t want to feel it. 

And His wrath is not just vengeful anger, but as Romans 2:5-6 says: ‘But after thy hardness (stubborn) and impenitent (unrepentant) heart treasurest up (stores up) unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgement of God (when His righteous judgement will be revealed); Who will render to every man according to his deeds.’ (Rom. 2:5-6) 

So wrath is basically God’s justice for disobedience and thus rounds out His basic attributes of Mercy, LOVE and Justice, or as one commentator asserts: ‘A God who didn’t have wrath towards sin would not be a God of LOVE, because how could a God of LOVE allow sin to go unpunished?’ Good question that my people. And believe me, it will not! However, our ever-LOVING God, has also ‘provided a way of redemption; faith in the atoning blood of his Son.’

Anyway, it’s the start of our work week and many of us have fears, anxieties and concerns, re the state of our lives and our world, weighing heavily on our souls and spirits, so let’s take this opportunity to carry them to the throne of grace in prayer nuh. As one strong, confident but humble voice, let’s declare our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

And as always, the answer to our prayers depends on keeping our promises and the right motives of our hearts. Much LOVE!

…obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him…  (Dr. Charles Stanley)                                                                                                                       

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8                   

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 July 2021 2 Thessalonians 3:10.

2 Thessalonians 3:10.      For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.

Yes people, once again it’s our weekly nemesis – Monday! Time for the partying to end and serious money-making work to restart. Oh, I know that Monday is a pain in the royal butt, but that’s the way our society is structured. If you don’t work, how are you going to live eh? 

And Bruh Paul’s instructions to the Thessalonians is an appropriate scripture for us to contemplate this Monday morning in the height of this pandemic summer 2021. He says: ‘For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.’ (2 Thess. 3:10) 

Now that sounds like a rather profound and harsh judgement. But there was good reason for Bruh Paul’s statement. And he lists his reasons in the next verse. ‘For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.’ (2 Thess. 3:11) 

And do we ever have a lot of those in our current society. And were we ever to do as Bruh Paul commanded, what a hue and cry there’d be in the land. But a lot of able-bodied people are taking advantage of the welfare system, often living better than those who are working. 

And yes, the pandemic has brought about a scarcity of jobs, but I’m talking about those families who for generations have lived off welfare. They are like parasites, simply living off their host and not contributing anything to its betterment. But as they say, that’s life! The truth is that whatever helping programme we institute; somebody will always find a way to use it to their advantage. 

So does that mean we should not provide for the genuinely sick and disabled? Absolutely not! Perhaps we need to police the system…sorry, police is the wrong word, considering all the anti-police sentiment that’s currently in vogue. Perhaps we need to have more checks and balances in the system, so that not as many unqualified people can take advantage of it. 

And Bruh Paul’s solution to the overall problem was: ‘Now them that are such (lazy busybodies) (smile) we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work and eat their own bread.’ (2 Thess. 3:12) Now that’s much easier said than done. 

And the scholars explain: ‘3:10-12. Paul expounds his simple and straightforward work ethic. If a person will not work, he should not eat! The Thessalonians diversion encouraged their meddlesome ways, demonstrating that “idle hands are the Devil’s workshop.” Now isn’t that the awesome truth! 

Nonetheless, Bruh Paul presses on. ‘But ye brethren be not weary in well doing.’ (2 Thess. 3:13) Yes friends, under all circumstances though, the church and its constituents should continue to do good. ‘And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish (warn) him as a brother.’ (2 Thess. 3:14-15) 

And the scholars tell us. ‘3:14-15. This instruction falls short of excommunication (kicking out of the church). Paul intends his readers to shame the brother, who is not an enemy, into obedience.’ Now that might have worked well back then, but I doubt it would have much efficacy today, where shame is not such a big part of life. In fact, the word, or attitude of shame, is almost non-existent today. The number of shameful things we do in these lax and godless times without feeling ashamed is extraordinary. 

But friends, be sure of this one thing, eventually all our chickens will come home to roost, and when they do, the consequences will be enormous. So please, let’s err on the side of caution nuh. Let’s work as sincerely, diligently and efficiently as we can, and keep on doing good, because that’s what Jesus desires of us. 

Now, there’s no doubting that our society, our world, is in utter turmoil, and it is beyond our capabilities to fix it. So, in sincere prayer, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, let’s go to the One who can remedy the situation, and ask for help. Altogether now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

And don’t forget that God’s answer hinges on our sincerity to turn from our evil ways. Much LOVE!

…when there’s little or no shame in a society…it becomes immoral and depraved…                                                                                                    

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8                

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 June 2021 Jeremiah 13:15.

Jeremiah 13:15.     ​Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the Lord hath spoken.

So our favourite day, Monday, has rolled around once again. Some people seem to think that the days are passing very slowly, but friends, I beg to differ. In my opinion, they are passing rather quickly, and consequently I’m not doing as much as I want to – although I did improve some last week. (smile) Look, the year didn’t too long begin, and we are already at the end of June, despite the pandemic and all the other controversy that’s been recently plaguing our world. And before we even turn around, it’s going to be Christmas and New Year’s again! (smile) 

But as they say, time waits on no one. So, if you don’t want to get up and do your thing, make hay while the sun shines, then too bad for you. And I think that is a message the Lord is sending to us in these last days. It is a message which He sent to the people of Judah and Jerusalem in the days of the prophet Jeremiah. 

‘Thus saith the Lord, After this manner will I mar (ruin) the pride of Judah, and the great pride of Jerusalem. This evil people, which refuse to hear my words, which walk in the imagination (stubbornness) of their heart, and walk after other gods, to serve them, and to worship them, shall even be as this girdle (sash) which is good for nothing. 

For as the girdle (sash) cleaveth to loins (clings to the waist) of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto (cling to) me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah, saith the Lord; that they might be unto me for a people, and for a name (renown), and for praise, and for a glory, but they would not hear.’ (Jer. 13:9-11) 

Yes friends, back then, though the Lord had told Judah and Jerusalem to cling to Him, to be His people, so that He could raise them up with glory and renown, they blatantly ignored Him and did their own thing, being totally disobedient and ungodly, thus the Lord’s warning that if they didn’t humble themselves and turn back to Him, He would cut them down to size. Remember pride is one of the things that our God detests, since it means we have little or no need for Him. 

As Jeremiah declares later on in the chapter: ‘Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the Lord hath spoken. Give glory to the Lord your God, before he cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and, while ye look for the light, he turn it into shadow of death, and make it gross darkness. But if ye will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret places for your pride; and mine eye shall weep sore, and run down with tears, because the Lord’s flock is carried away captive.’ (Jer. 13:15-17) Now that’s a strong warning my brethren! 

And the scholars explain those verses thus: ‘13:15-17. A third illustration ( the first was the marred girdle, and the second filled bottles of wine that were smashed together), concerns a weary traveller in danger of being overtaken by the falling darkness of night. Such was Judah. It must renounce all pride and give God His rightful glory before the final darkness of national catastrophe engulfs it.’ And if you remember rightly, Judah didn’t comply with the warning and were eventually transported away as captives to Babylon. 

Now I beg to put forward the argument that we have also become very prideful, disobedient and ungodly during the last few generations, to the point where we have very little respect for Almighty God and are doing our best to eradicate him from our society. And what’s happened to us during the last fifteen months eh? Doesn’t it seem like what we’ve been going through during that period closely resembles that example of a weary traveller being caught up in the darkness of night? It certainly does. 

Just look at all the ‘sufferation’ we’ve endured, and are still enduring. And we didn’t merely have the shadow of death, but the real thing that took away millions of lives! Then look at our lack of knowledge re the Covid -19 virus and all its variants that’s still plaguing us. Look at the controversy about the value of the vaccine and all the other disinformation that’s flourished on the subject. And fifteen months later we’re really not much further ahead, because of some people’s refusal to comply with the few variables we believe can stop the flow of the virus. 

And in all of this, has our society ever turned to the Creator of the universe and tried to invoke His help? A comparative handful of believers. But the majority of the world has ignored God and continued being dependent on the efforts of mortal and frail mankind. Now, I don’t know if this is the Lord’s way of punishing us for our disgusting pride, disobedience and ungodliness, but I do know that wisdom dictates that we turn to Him in times of trouble, especially if we can’t seem to correct the situation on our own. 

So please friends, let’s do that right now nuh. Let’s turn to our Creator, lift up our voices in sincere prayer, asking for His divine help in this our time of very critical need. Therefore, as one voice, let’s offer up our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

But then again friends, our prayer will only be positively answered if we keep our promise and sincerely turn from our evil ways. So it’s all in our hands now. Much LOVE!

…when is the created ever going to learn…that it cannot diminish or defeat the Creator…                                                                                   

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8                

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 April 2021 Psalm 95:6.

Psalm 95:6.     ​O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.

Once more unto the breach dear friends; once more on to a brand new Monday morning, in this most recent and very controversial pandemic lockdown! It’s not surprising that there are so many varying opinions on the status of the lockdown. Some are for it the way it is, some want it even tighter, some want it loser, and some don’t want it at all. And I guess a lot of the opinions boil down to money, the economic factor. If you’re not working, or your business is closed, then you obviously want to get some livelihood going. 

Meanwhile, if you’re a medical proponent, you possible are more concerned with saving lives. It’s a fine balancing act, indeed a most difficult one, and whatever the governments do, many people will be displeased. And many governments are not doing such a great job, in fact some are making an utter mess of the situation. In a recent poll it was found that at the beginning of the pandemic, the citizens were very trusting of the governments to do a good job, but a year into it, they no longer trust the governments to handle it properly. 

And when governments lose the trust of their citizens, that almost always foretells trouble. And we’re indeed seeing a lot of chaos and confusion all over the world right now, due to the handling of the pandemic. So what shall we do to break the stranglehold that this Corona virus has on us eh? You all know my take on the situation; namely that sin and disobedience to God’s laws are too rampant in our world today. Evil is the number one force in the world, instead of LOVE! Selfishness abounds instead of togetherness. 

This means that Almighty God is no longer respected, valued and worshipped to the extent that He should be. We are more concerned with getting rid of Him from our society than placing Him on a pinnacle of glory. Look at the many sad tales of hunger, famine, economic devastation, strife and all the other negative situations in an overall wealthy and prosperous world. It should never be as bad as it currently is my people. The problem is that too few have too much and too many have too little, and until we straighten out that horrible inequity, our world will always be in a state of turmoil. 

But how do we do that, you ask? As far as I am concerned, the answer is very simple; return to sincerely worshipping and obeying the God of our forefathers; the One who created us and still LOVES us, but will not put up with our disobedience and abominable sinful behaviour forever. But we know that the evil one and his henchmen don’t want that, for it will mean losing their current control, and they will fight tooth and nail to retain it. But we Christians need to spring into battle right now, if we’re to make a difference before it’s too late. 

And how do we do that? We can begin by doing what the psalmist says in Psalm 96 – A call to praise God. ‘O Sing unto the Lord a new song: sing unto the Lord all the earth. Sing unto the Lord, bless his name; show forth (proclaim the good news of) his salvation from day to day. Declare his glory among the heathen (gentiles), his wonders among all people.’ (Ps. 96:1-3) 

Now that’s the first move friends; spreading God’s word and His glory over the land. And if we want our efforts to succeed, we can’t be bashful, afraid, or ashamed of doing it, but be strong and stand up like faithful soldiers in Christ’s army, and fight the good fight, keep the faith, like Bruh Paul told Timothy. (2 Tim. 4:7) 

And the psalmist continues his plea for unity and sense of purpose. ‘For the Lord is great, and greatly to be praised: he is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the Lord made the heavens. Honour and majesty are before him: strength and beauty are in his sanctuary. Give unto the Lord, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the Lord glory and strength. 

Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come into his courts. O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness: fear (tremble) before him all the earth. Say among the heathen (gentiles) that the Lord reigneth: the world also shall be (is firmly) established that it shall not be moved (shaken): he shall judge the people righteously.’ (Ps. 96: 4-10) 

Now that’s the kind of thing believers ought to be doing, not sitting on our fannies, afraid of the evil one, and enjoying the sinful pleasures of the world. We desperately need to do as Psalm 95 tells us. ‘O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker. For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand (under his care). Today, if ye will hear his voice, harden not your heart, as in the provocation (rebellion), and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness: when your fathers tempted (tried) me, proved me, and saw my work.’ (Ps. 95:6-9) 

Friends, we are being just as stupid as the Israelites were back in the wilderness, trying and testing God with their rebellion and disobedience and surly complaining, forgetting what he had just done for them, bringing them out of four hundred years of bondage in Egypt. And they paid a hefty price for it; wandering aimlessly in the wilderness for forty years, until all the generation that had come out of Egypt were dead, except Joshua and Caleb. And we are running the same foolish, ungrateful joke right now my brethren by trying to move God out of our society. 

I can assure us though, that the consequences will not be pretty, for there are always harsh consequences to stubborn and willful disobedience and sin. So what better time, than this Easter Monday, a day after Christ’s Resurrection, for us to get smart, realize our serious failings and call out to our God, our Maker, for the divine help that only He can give. Therefore, in strong and confident, but humble voice, let’s offer up our Monday Morning Battle Hymn in sincere prayer. 

‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive and standing in faith despite the mass confusion that’s currently prevailing in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems; the pandemic of Covid -19, the racial, political, and religious strife that’s ignited worldwide, plus the many natural disasters that now seem more prevalent than ever. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction to bring our problems under control. 

And for those who are currently suffering from the many negative situations, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. Father, please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

Now fellow believers, we have to go out and show that sincere repentance and obedience in all our dealings, so the Lord can positively answer our prayer. Much LOVE!

…the wages of sin is death…only in and with Jesus…can you avoid it… 

   Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8          

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 March 2021 1 Corinthians 10:13a.

1 Corinthians 10:13a.     ​There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful,

Come on friends, it’s time to stop singing the new work week Monday Blues and rise to the level that Jesus desires of us. That means, be the circumstances rough or smooth, our attitude will be bright and positive and Christ-like! Awright! So that’s not so easy to do, especially in these pandemic times, but what else yuh going to do eh? Will a bad, sour or resentful attitude help any? No, it will just make matters worse. And besides, if you’re a follower of Jesus, then you need to have the attitude that He had, and try to behave like He would behave…And that’s certainly not sad, miserable, sour or resentful! 

Oh precious people, it’s not that we don’t need Jesus in the good times, for then we can probably get by on our own steam, though not live the abundant life He promised. But it’s in the times that we’re caught between a rock and a hard place, damned if we do and damned if we don’t, like now, that we truly need Him most. For ofttimes, He is the only one who can extricate us from those painful and hurting situations. And even if He chooses, for whatever reason, not to extricate us from them, then He will enable us, give us the wherewithal to handle them with a good attitude, and thus grow and mature from the experience. 

Remember Bruh Paul’s warning of Israel being a good example of a disobedient attitude in the wilderness. ‘Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. 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. 10:12-13) Now that’s a very important scripture friends, and a very misunderstood one. 

And I like this explanation from Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers, found on the Bible Hub website. ‘(13) There hath no temptation taken you.–What is meant by a “temptation common to man” (or rather, suited to man) is explained further on as a temptation which one is “able to bear.” From the warning and exhortation of the previous verse the Apostle passes on to words of encouragement, “You need not be hopeless or despairing.” God permits the temptation by allowing the circumstances which create temptation to arise, but He takes care that no Fate bars the path of retreat. 

With each temptation he makes a way to escape from it. And that is so, must be so, because God is faithful. The state of salvation to which God has called us would be a delusion if there were an insuperable difficulty to our continuing in it. We have in this verse, perhaps, the most practical and therefore the clearest exposition to be found of the doctrine of free-will in relation to God’s overruling power. God makes an open road, but then man himself must walk in it. God controls circumstances, but man uses them. That is where his responsibility lies.’ 

So God provides all the tools, there are always options for us, but it’s our responsibility to find them and walk in them. Oh friends, the basic idea of the epistle is that God is faithful, as Bruh Paul states in the beginning. ‘God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (1 Cor. 1:9) 

As the scholars explain. ‘1:9. Unto the fellowship of his son: The term fellowship includes both union and communion. The Corinthian believers had been brought into union with the Lord Jesus Christ. Accordingly, this great truth implies that they had been brought into communion with one another. Here in a nutshell is the theme of this epistle.’ 

Yes my people, it’s all about fellowship, about fellowship with God and with each other. But are we living in true fellowship with either God or each other eh? Sadly, the answer is no, not nearly enough as required. And that brings to mind these appropriate words of Bruh David from Psalm 133 – The joy of Brotherhood. ‘How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! ‘ (Ps. 133:1) And that friends is the basic reason why our world is in such a mess; we’re not living in true fellowship with either God or man. 

So, no wonder all our efforts to clean it up are failing. It’s only when we get serious about our relationship with God and our fellow man are we ever going to have a harmonious world. So let’s take that first step right now nuh, by going to God in prayer, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn and letting Him know that at long last we are serious about changing our sinful ways. Altogether now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive and standing in faith despite the mass confusion that’s currently prevailing in our world. 

We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems; the pandemic of Covid -19, the racial, political, and religious strife that’s ignited worldwide, plus the many natural disasters that now seem more prevalent than ever. Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. 

That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction to bring our problems under control. And for those who are currently suffering from the many negative situations, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. Father, please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

So the ball is in our court now people. We need to show the Lord that we are serious about what we just prayed, and we can only do so with changed behaviour. And until we do, nothing much will improve. Much LOVE!

…it’s time to throw aside unprofitable sin…and dwell together in unity… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 March 2021 Ecclesiastes 3:1.

Ecclesiastes 3:1.     ​To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven:

Will somebody wake me from hibernation when the pandemic’s over and we have returned to some kind of a normal life? I just don’t feel like facing another Monday morning of confusion, sickness and controversy, of false news and all sorts of conspiracy theories. As the old people would say, too much of anything is no good. 

And we do have too much of all those things listed above, as well as too much information that our minds can’t properly handle and it’s too easy for us to spread that info even when we don’t know if it’s true or false. And the bad thing with our social media revolution is that once the info hits the street, it’s impossible to take it back, for it then takes on a life of its very own. So please wake me when the world adversity is over! (smile) 

And would you believe that today is also the first day of March in this brand new year of 2021? But we’ve been so busy fighting the pandemic and each other that we have hardly noticed that the days are quickly going by; two months have now passed and we’re still no closer to a kind of new normal. But hopefully, we are making some progress towards it. And it’s not like this is the first time we’ve been surrounded by numerous difficult problems. It’s just a part of life. 

As Cousin Sol so wisely said in Ecclesiastes: ‘To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven:’ (Eccl. 3:1) And isn’t that the gospel truth! There’s a season and a time for everything to happen in God’s world, for that’s how He planned it. 

And Cousin Sol spells it out for us. ‘A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep , and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 

A time to get (gain), and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend (tear apart), and a time to sew (together); a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to LOVE, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.’ (Eccl. 3:2-8) 

Now doesn’t that sound rather interesting? It surely does! And hear this explanation from the scholars. ‘3:1-8. As Solomon reflects on all of life, he expresses a beautiful poem of 14 pairs of opposite events that God has a sovereign design behind all events (cf. Rom. 8:28). To gather stones (vs. 5) refers to the process of clearing land for planting or building. To hate (vs. 8) means to withdraw from intimacy and should not always be taken in an absolute sense (cf. Mal. 1:2-3).’ 

Yes friends, because our wonderful God has a sovereign design for life on planet earth, we can faithfully believe that He will eventually work everything out for the good of those He’s called and who respond favourably to that call. (Rom. 8:28) And I think we should take serious note of that reference to Malachi. 

Listen to how the scholars explain the Lord’s words. ‘1:2-5. Yet I LOVED Jacob, and I hated Esau has caused concern to many. This expression involves the use of a Hebrew idiom. If a father had two sons and made one heir, he was said to LOVE the one he made his heir and to hate the other whom he had not made an heir. The LOVE and hate spoken of here is not related to the emotions, they are related to the will of God. The words challenge Israel to recognize the responsibilities inherent in its privileged position.’ 

And the same criteria stand today for us believers in Christ Jesus, which means that we are also being challenged by God right now to recognize the responsibilities inherent in our privileged position. And we can’t deny that we are privileged, for no other people but believers have the Holy Spirit of God dwelling in them and actively leading and guiding them in all sincerity and truth. 

Consequently, we are called to up our game; be highly flavoured salt of the earth, and a bright shining light in the darkness of this evil world. So right now, let’s do like Israel did when they finally woke up from their foolish disobedience nuh; turn to God in sincere repentance and prayer. And the words of our Monday Morning Battle Hymn are rather appropriate for just such a time as this. 

As one strong and sincere voice now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive and standing in faith despite the mass confusion that’s currently prevailing in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems; the pandemic of Covid -19, the racial, political, and religious strife that’s ignited worldwide, plus the many natural disasters that now seem more prevalent than ever. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction to bring our problems under control. 

And for those who are currently suffering from the many negative situations, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. Father, please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

Now it all depends on the sincerity of our hearts and if we uphold all that we’ve just vowed to God. And Cousin Sol had solid advice on that too. ‘When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer (delay) not to pay it, for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed.’ (Eccl. 5:4) Words of mucho wisdom, my brethren! Much LOVE!

…common sense dictates…that the created should pay obeisance to their Creator… 

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