Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 July 2016 Zechariah 4:6b

Zechariah 4:6b.    Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord.  

And then it was another bright and sunshiny day on God’s great earth! 

And all His people joyfully declared: ‘Glory to God for bringing us safely through the dark and evil night into the glorious and brilliant light of His Son and our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!’ 

Yes friends, our wonderful God is always working on our behalf! What does the scripture say? ‘Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is thy keeper (protector): the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. 

The Lord shall preserve (keep) thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. The Lord shall preserve (keep) thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth,and even for ever more’ (Ps.121:4-8) 

Ah mih people what encouraging and reassuring words! They tell us all about the sustaining power of our omnipotent God! 

Now hear this other aspect of our marvellous and magnanimous God. It comes in the form of a poem ‘The Task,’ from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. 

And it says: ‘Lord, You give me a task So utterly impossible So totally beyond comprehension – The very thought of it Startles me. I want to run hide escape Anything, Lord. Then You electrify me You invade and permeate me 

You penetrate every fiber of me Until the task is accomplished By Your own magnificent power. Then You praise the performance Your creativity achieved And You reward me beyond expectation – As though I had done it All by myself, My Father.’ 

Wow mih breddren! Isn’t that a most magnificent God? He gives you a task that seems utterly impossible, then gives you the wherewithal to perform it with flying colours, then turns around and praises and blesses you, as though you had done it all on your own, when, without His omnipotence, you couldn’t even have accomplished the initial step! 

Oh my people, I feel that way everyday when I come to write the Bit, for basically it’s not my idea, but the Lord’s, and through His Holy Spirit, He guides and enables me to write it. Yuh think I could have been writing the Bit for nine years now in my own strength and wisdom? No way Jose! It’s the Lord who empowers me each and every day! 

And the scripture verse on which that poem is based is also our Bit for today. ‘Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord.’ Yes friends, it’s not through might nor power, but through His Holy Spirit that the Lord accomplishes His tasks through us! 

Now that piece of scripture comes from a vision of the prophet Zechariah about a magnificent, golden candlestick and two olive trees. And the angel in the vision asked Zechariah if he knew its significance? 

And when Zechariah said no, the angel informed him. ‘Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord.’ (Zech.4:6) That’s the full verse there. 

And the scholars offer us this explanation. ‘4:1-14. The fifth vision, the golden candlestick and the two olive trees: The work of God (the rebuilding of the temple) would be accomplished through God’s leaders, Joshua and Zerubbabel, who would be enabled to perform their tasks by the Spirit of God. 

The vision indicates that future Israel will be a blessing to all the nations of the world through an abundant supply of the Spirit of God as the result of the coming of the Messiah, who will unite the offices of priest and king in Himself.’ 

And did it all come to pass as prophesied my people? It surely did! For since the coming of Jesus, beginning at Pentecost, all believers have been imbued with the Holy Spirit as their guide and assistant. In the olden days the Spirit would come upon someone when the Lord needed them to do something special, but didn’t dwell within them as He does in us now… 

And all God’s children declared a loud, sincere and heartfelt, ‘Glory to God for His wonderful goodness to the children of men!’ And He certainly deserves oodles of glory my breddren! 

Now we won’t get into the ramifications of our Bit today, we’ll leave that for tomorrow, the Lord willing. Let’s go home instead by declaring our Wednesday Wail with sincerity, truth, faith and hope, some of the things that keep us going on the right path, the straight and narrow one, in this evil, godforsaken world. 

Wailing now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. 

My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Oh friends, I do hope those words were sincerely and truthfully felt and meant, because only then can we enthusiastically go out with great expectations of victory, and do the important work Christ has entrusted us with. Have a godly and blessed day my people! Much LOVE!

…when the Holy Spirit comes upon you…your life changes for the better…you can walk on water and move mountains…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 December 2015 Luke 2:33

Luke 2:33.   And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of him.

Oh my people, this Sunday morning, the first after Christmas Day is the perfect opportunity for us to sing and ponder this song, sung by several artists. It’s titled ‘Mary Did You Know?’ 

Please sing along with me: ‘Mary did you know that your baby boy Will one day walk on water? Mary did you know that your baby boy Will save our sons and daughters? Did you know that your baby boy Has come to make you new? This child that you’ve delivered Will soon deliver you? Mary, did you know that your baby boy Will give sight to a blind man? 

Mary, did you know that your baby boy Will calm a storm with his hand? Did you know that your baby boy Has walked where angels trod? And when you kiss your little baby You’ve kissed the face of God. 

Oh, Mary did you know   Ooh…  The blind will see, the deaf will hear, The dead will live again The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, The praises of the lamb? Mary did you know that your baby boy Is Lord of all creation? Mary did you know that your baby boy Will one day rule the nations? Did you know that your Baby Boy Is Heaven’s perfect Lamb? This sleeping child you’re holding Is the great I am?’ 

Oh Friends, I don’t know how many of those things Mary knew, but I am sure she knew that her baby boy was very special, especially from the manner in which He was conceived! Then there were so many signs and wonders along the way, how could she not know that He would indeed be a mover and a shaker. 

As our Bit so pointedly puts it:  ‘And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of him. 

Now let’s look at some of the signs and wonders. First off is the manner in which she was apprised of the situation by the sudden appearance of the angel telling her that she had found favour with God and would conceive and bring forth a son to be called JESUS, who would be great and called the Son of the Highest (Most High) and the Lord God shall give him the throne of his father David. And the angel went on to explain how it would all come to pass. (Luke 1:27-38) 

Now if that didn’t give her some indication that something important was going to happen, then I don’t know what would have. And by the way, Mary was no simpleton, so her unhesitating agreement, ‘Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done unto me according to thy word,’ was more a matter of faith, rather than a lack of understanding. 

After that Mary went to visit her cousin Elisabeth, who previously considered barren, was then some six months pregnant with John the Baptist. And when she entered Elisabeth’s house and greeted her, John jumped for joy in his mother’s womb. (smile) 

‘And Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: and spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence is this to me (why is it) that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance (fulfillment) of those things which were told her from the Lord.’ (Luke 1:41-45) 

Then Mary declared the awesome words we now call the Magnificat. ‘My soul doth magnify (exalt) the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded the low estate (lowly state) of his handmaiden (maid servant): for behold from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.’ (Luke 1:46-48) You can read the rest of it for yourselves my people. It runs up to verse 56. 

And according to the scholars: ‘1:46-56. This passage is called “the Magnificat,” based on the first word of the Latin translation (the Vulgate). It is rich in Old Testament imagery: Jesus’ coming was in fulfillment of Old Testament promises.’  

So even if Mary wasn’t too sure of the situation, once she heard Elisabeth’s pronouncement and spoke the immortal words of the Magnificat, then spending three months with Elisabeth, she must have been aware that an event of great importance was going to take place in her life. 

I am sure too that Mary was quite relieved when most likely, she very anxiously told Joseph about her situation, because the consequences of adultery or fornication were great in those days, even leading to the stoning of the woman. 

But the Good Book tells us: ‘Then Joseph, her husband, being a just (upright) man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily (secretly). 

But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.’ (Matt.1:19-21)  

Now all of that was done to fulfill Isaiah’s prophecy re the virgin birth of a child called Immanuel, God with us. (Is.7:14, 9:6) 

‘Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife. And knew her not (kept her a virgin) till she brought forth her first-born: and he called his name JESUS.’ (Matt.1:24-25) 

And the scholars explain: ‘1:19-20. Because Joseph was a just man, he decided to put her away (divorce her) privately (“privily”). The Jewish betrothal had to be legally broken. Joseph’s merciful attitude gives an insight into his true nature as a man.’ 

Yes friends, it wasn’t an easy row for either Mary or Joseph to hoe with the Saviour of man placed in their laps, but hoe it they did, with strength, wisdom, faith and obviously the Lord’s help. May we go forward on our own row today doing the same thing, of course with Jesus’ help. 

And we’ll continue Mary’s story tomorrow, God willing. Till then may we rest in the peace, comfort, joy and LOVE of our heavenly Father. Much LOVE!

…it’s Sunday…and still the Christmas season…so please let’s fill the churches with people…giving thanks and praise to God…as we ought to…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 November 2013 Mark 6:50

Mark 6:50.    For they all saw him, and were troubled. and immediately he talked with them, and saith unto them, Be of good cheer: it is I; be not afraid.
 
Oh Friends, the ole fella’s a bit under the weather this Wednesday fall morning. I got up from a good sleep with my nasal allergies acting up some, which caused my spirit to fall a tad, but the Bit has to go out under any circumstance… except death obviously. (smile)
 
And I have no doubt that the Lord will enable me to write something sensible that will encourage His followers and glorify Him.
 
And we’ll begin with the latest story that’s making world headline from Toronto; that’s the inappropriate, ‘unmayoral’ behaviour of Toronto’s Mayor, Rob Ford.
 
I have to shake my head and sigh, ‘Ah Lord eh.’ That’s because for several months now there’s been talk et al about a video showing him smoking crack cocaine with some youngsters from the Somali community, his hanging out with other undesirables, drunkenness in public and a host of other misdemeanours.
 
Obviously he claimed that none of them were true. But apparently yesterday he changed his tune and confessed to the crack cocaine smoking.
 
This deserves another heartfelt sigh and ‘Ah Lord eh,’ for all that the two Ford boys, the mayor and his brother Doug, a councilman, have done since they were elected two years ago, is cause untold and unnecessary controversy and make the city a laughingstock around the world with their antagonistic behaviour.
 
I stopped paying much attention to them long ago because they behave like a pair of arrogant, bully-boy buffoons, and then they get on their radio talk show and make matters even worse. It even seems that brother Doug is the de facto mayor, because in all the nonsense, you’ve heard more from him than the supposed mayor.
 
They both should resign, but neither of them seems to have even considered that action. And sadly, it’s been said that Rob Ford has a good chance of again winning the mayor’s position in an election scheduled for the not too distant future.
 
The good Lord forbid! Then they’ll truly feel that the city is their personal fiefdom and commit even worse actions. But just remember Friends, that we always get the government we deserve. And that’s enough of the foolish Fords. I’ve spent more time on them than I’d planned.
 
Let’s get to something more important, positive and uplifting like our Bit. ‘For they all saw him, and were troubled. and immediately he talked with them, and saith unto them, Be of good cheer: it is I; be not afraid.’
 
Yes mih Friends, powerful and encouraging words from a real leader, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!
 
He spoke those words to His disciples when He came walking over the water towards them, as they were fighting to stay afloat and alive in their little boat amidst a terrible storm.
 
All of this happened after He’d fed the five thousand with five loaves and two fishes. He then compelled the disciples to get into the boat and cross over to Bethsaida, while He sent away the multitudes, then went up into a mountain to pray.
 
Please note my people, that everyday Jesus got up early and prayed, strengthening His Spirit, before intermingling with the crowds. He also took time to refresh His Spirit in prayer after engaging the multitudes. We would be wise to do likewise; pray before and after our engaging the world and all its evil, deceit and treachery.
 
It’s amazing and also interesting that after seeing Jesus do the feeding miracle earlier on, the disciples were still terribly afraid when they saw Him walking on the water towards them. In their abject fear, they believed it was an apparition, a ghost. That’s until Jesus spoke those gentle, encouraging and comforting words: ‘Be of good cheer: it is I; be not afraid.’
 
Oh Friends, it wasn’t the first or last time that Jesus said those comforting words, ‘Be of good cheer.’ He first said it to a man sick of the palsy (paralyzed), lying on his bed, before He healed him. ‘Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.’ (Matt.9.2b)
 
And He repeated it again in His famous words to the disciples, and by extension us: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33)  
 
Oh my people, we couldn’t ask for more encouraging and comforting words than those! But yet we’re still afraid of life and what the world brings against us. If we weren’t, we’d be fighting tooth and nail to change our disgusting, deteriorating, evil world. But unfortunately Lucifer and his wicked bully-boys have us scared of what they’ll do to us if we stand up and seriously fight for our Christian ways and rights.
 
Oh my brethren, as true followers of Christ, we cannot go around living a scared and half-hearted life! Jesus has already given us the victory, we now have to accept it, and behave as though we’ve won the battle, remember we live by faith and not by sight. Otherwise all Jesus’ sacrifices on our behalf would be in vain. And we certainly don’t want that to happen. 
 
The fact of the matter is that long before Jesus even came to earth, many times the Lord instructed His people not to be afraid. Listen to these powerful, encouraging and comforting words from Isaiah, talking of the final restoration of Israel.
 
‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Behold, all they that were incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded (disgraced): they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish.’ (Is.41:10-11)
 
Ah mih breddren, what else do we expect our God to do eh – come and hold our hands and lead us like little children? Chuh! We’re big children, full of talk in good times, but we behave like ‘scaredy’ cats when adversity arises.
 
Oh Friends, I’m imploring us today to get rid of that fearful attitude and scared mentality. Instead let’s staunchly accept and believe the ever-faithful promises of our Lord and Saviour like true believers should.
 
As Bruh Paul tells Timothy: ‘Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.’ (2 Tim.3:12)
 
But then he encourages the Roman church with these words. ‘Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us.’ (Rom.8:37) And that’s the gospel truth people!
 
Oh my fellow believers, we shall suffer adversity here on earth, but through the steadfast faith and strength in the promises of Jesus, who’s already conquered the world, we too shall conquer our adversity and adversaries. Please take comfort in that and let’s stand strong and fight the good fight in His Name. That’s the mark of true believers! Much LOVE!
 
…nothing can separate us from the LOVE OF GOD…which is in Christ Jesus our Lord… (Rom.8:39b)
 
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 August 2013 Proverbs 3:7-8

Proverbs 3:7-8.   Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel (body), and marrow (strength) to thy bones.
 
Oh Friends, it’s Thursday, and the ole fella’s feeling the call of affirmations to boost our spirits! Mama Mia! So today will be an affirmations day!
 
And I’ll start us off by sharing one of the two conglomerations of affirmative stuff I have on my desk. From whence I got them, I don’t remember, but they are indeed useful. I believe I’ve shared them both already, but it’s stuff that never goes bad, in fact it’s something we can all use everyday to raise our faith and courage.
 
And it says: ‘I CAN have victory in my life by dealing with the things that are keeping me from God’s best. I am confronting my struggles head on, so that I can overcome them. God has given me the power to rise above. He has given me the strength to focus on Him and push through. NOTHING will hold me back! This is my declaration of what I can do through Christ!’
 
Yes Friends, those are all things we can do through Christ, because He has given us the power through the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. But most importantly, before we can do any of those things, we first have to acknowledge Him; His strength, His power and His majesty as the Creator of all there is.
 
And our Bit puts it very clearly and concisely. ‘Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel (body), and marrow (strength) to thy bones.’
 
Now that’s absolute truth my people! Nothing will work for us if we don’t first turn to the Lord, our Creator, the font of all wisdom, power, knowledge and truth!
 
And having learned that lesson, let’s absorb this one: ‘Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.1:6)
 
That’s God’s faithfulness at work Friends! That’s our eternal security, for God will NEVER leave anything undone in the lives of those who sincerely try to obey His will.
 
Now listen to John on sin, its reality and remedy. ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’ (1 John 1:9)
 
That’s the number one move to righteousness mih breddren – confessing our sins!
 
Now here’s one we all know and like to quote. Whether we truly believe and live by it is another story though. ‘It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.’ (Lam.3:22-23)
 
Oh my people, that’s gospel truth at its truest! For if our God was not compassionate and faithful, and renewed us every day, I’m afraid to think what we’d be like, and where we’d end up.
 
Now here’s a gem from Bruh Paul to Cousin Timmy; ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7)
 
Oh my brethren, my brethren, that scripture is so powerful that it could make us walk on water, if we so desire! (smile) It’s the first image of power that came to mind. But it’s true Friends. Our God has imbued us with all we need to fight the good fight here on this evil earth. But we need to raise up all these things from our spirits so that we can use them.
 
There’s no need for us to be as fearful and afraid of this life and its evil powers as too many of us are. That’s because we have the Lord’s power, His LOVE, faith and courage buried within us. It’s high time for us to let them rise up, so that we can go forth and do the job(s) we’ve been commissioned to do; Spread God’s Word, His LOVE, His Mercy and His forgiveness, through faith and the godly way we live our lives.
 
And I think we’ll end where we began; with the eternal wisdom of Cousin Sol. ‘Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct (make smooth) thy paths.’ (Prov.3:5-6)
 
Oh my fellow believers in Christ, if there was ever only one scripture in the entire Good Book that we could hold on dearly to, take with us everyday and everywhere, and give someone else to also hold on dearly to, I believe it’s those two verses from the arsenal of Cousin Sol’s wisdom. That’s because they embody the very gist, the very kernel or seed of what God’s been trying to say to us from day one – TRUST ME!
 
And believe me Friends, there’s no greater thing that we can do, than sincerely trusting in the God who formed us from the dust of the earth in His very own image, then breathed His own breath of life into our nostrils.
 
So please let’s memorize as many of these Bible verses as we can, or even just get their substance in to our hearts, minds and souls, so that they can encourage us, keep us strong and steadfast in our faith, build our self-confidence and thus our confidence in the ONE TRUE GOD; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob!
 
Now that my beautiful brethren, is wisdom at its very zenith! Much LOVE!
 
…there’s no greater thing we can do…than to surrender our lives…put them in their entirety… into the hands of our heavenly Father…