Today’s Scrip-Bit   18 March 2023 James 4:8a.

James 4:8a. Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw nigh (near) to you…

So, after all the problems of the work week, we’ve finally gotten back to our beloved lazy day Saturday! Praise the Lord! Isn’t it wonderful to know that there’s one day you don’t have to listen for the shrill ringing of the alarm clock, or whatever device you use to awaken you. And even if it does come on, you can turn it off with a grateful sigh? Of course! And even if sleep eludes you, you can lie in your warm, comfortable bed and just enjoy the laziness and pleasure of a lazy day. (smile) 

Some of us might even dare to roll out of bed and roll right on to the living room couch in front of the boob tube and watch the days happenings with bleary eyes. And when you see it’s just the same old, negative things that’s been reported as news, you shut down the annoying, intruding thing, then curl up on the couch under a warm blanket and drift off to some faraway place, where, in your dreams, you can see yourself frolicking on a golden brown, sandy beach, with calm blue seas stretching off into eternity, just inviting you to come and have a salacious dip. 

Wow! Now that’s the thing that dreams are made of! And I guess why the Lord, our marvellous and imaginative Creator, gave us the power to dream, the power to use the amazing imagination with which He’s gifted each one of His wonderful creations. But yuh know what, the Lord also desired that we use that power to imagine and dream to come closer to Him, to let our biggest dream be to have an intimate relationship with Him. And why is an intimate relationship with God important eh? 

Because, in the first place, that’s why He created us. He wanted to be in a covenant relationship with living beings who bore the same traits and attributes like Himself. That’s why God made us in His image and likeness, with thoughts, minds and ways, that are lower than His but nonetheless above all other living beings. Man is supposed to be His most masterful creation. And please don’t believe that our God was foolish when He created us and gave us free will to do as we choose. No, not all. 

That’s why there’s a space in every man’s soul that’s specially set aside for the Lord, and until He comes and sets up shop in that space, man is never happy, satisfied or contented. God’s intention from the very beginning was that all of His creation should come to know and LOVE Him the way He knows and LOVES them. However, when our forefathers, Adam and Eve, fell from grace, and sin became our heritage, we automatically withdrew from that closeness with our Maker and our eyes were turned to the lustful, evil and ungodly works of the enemy, Satan. 

But the Lord has never given up on us, He’s lays there ready to hear and help us if we come to Him. That’s why James tells us to ‘Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw nigh (near) to you… Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.’ (James 4:8,10) Yes friends, we need to draw near to God if we want to have the successful life He’s planned for us to have, but we can’t do that with all the sin and evil deeds and thoughts that saturate our souls, bodies and minds. 

Oh, we do need to be humble, penitent and sincere, but the beauty of our God is that He will accept us anyway and anytime we come to Him. As Hebrews tells us: ‘Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.’ (Heb. 10:22) And I know some of us have questions on the whole subject of why draw close to God, and even more importantly, how do we do that? I guess I put the cart before the horse, jumping into what we need to do, rather than first explaining the why’s and wherefores. (smile) 

So, let’s see if we can answer them to your satisfaction. As per why we need to draw close to God, why is it good to do so? One commentary gives us this answer. ‘Drawing near to God gives peace to our souls; peace from the burden of our sins and peace in the midst of the burdens that come to us through others’ sin as well. The nearness of God is our answer. His nearness is our need’ Remember I said that we each have an empty space set aside for God? Well, until He occupies that space, we will never have true peace or contentment. 

And that’s not the peace that the world gives us, but the peace that comes from God, the peace that passes all understanding. In other words, the divine peace of God, who’s thoughts, mind and ways are so much higher than ours. And peace is something the whole world is desperately searching for right now. But real peace can only be attained when one draws close to God. And how do we do that? Here’s a list of the basic things we need to do. 

The first and most important thing is to receive Jesus. Yes friends, receiving Jesus into your life is the first step to getting closer to the Lord. For as Jesus said, ‘I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.’ (John 14:6) That sets the stage right there. If you don’t receive Jesus, then you’ll never get close to the Father. That’s all there is to it. Then we need to Study the Bible. Studying the Bible is essential if you want to grow closer to God, because that’s His word, His will for those who wish to follow Him. 

Next, we must pray, because prayer is how we communicate with God. That brings up the subject of praise and worship. We need to do those things since He expects them of us. Praise and worship show that we LOVE and glorify the Lord. Then there’s the dire need to trust Him. Yes friends, that’s a must. For without true trust in the Lord, you will be lost, like a rudderless ship floundering in the raging sea. Which brings us to this other very important factor, faith. 

Oh my people, without true faith in God, where will we be? Mired in the devil’s world of sin and darkness, sinking ever so slowly to hellfire and eternal damnation! But with trust and faith in Almighty God, our lives take on an entirely different colour, one of light, of salvation and eternal life. That’s why the Bible tells us: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) 

And once we’ve done all of that, we then need to get involved. That’s go to church, gather and worship with other believers, encourage each other, and help to spread the Word to all the world as Jesus desired in the Great Commission. ‘Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples of) all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt. 28:19-20) 

And that’s it in a nutshell friends! We draw near to God through Jesus Christ, for our good, not God’s. Please, let’s remember that everything God says or does, is essentially for our benefit, not His! Much LOVE!

…in this turbulent world…close to God is the place to be… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ           

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   2 March 2023 Hebrews 11:6.

Hebrews 11:6.      But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is (exists), and is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Now I don’t know what area my weather forecasting computer is talking about when it says 2C Cloudy, but it’s certainly not my neighbourhood because outside of my place it’s a dry, bright and sunshiny as ever Thursday morning in early March 2023. And let’s hope it stays that way, because I’ve got to go out the street later and run some errands. And since it seems that the Lord was most willing for us to see another beautiful day on planet earth, then we have to keep our promise and continue looking at scriptures that tell us about faith and its relationship to fear and Jesus. (smile) 

Now, yesterday, we looked at several scriptures that showed where faith is of the utmost necessity if and when we choose to serve God. But first let’s see what exactly faith is. The Bible tells us that ‘Faith is the substance (realization) of things hoped for, the evidence (conviction) of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good report. Through faith we understand that the worlds (ages) were framed (prepared) by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear (are visible)’ (Heb. 11:1-3) 

Yes friends, faith is basically believing for things we don’t see, yet hoping that if it’s the will of God, it will happen. It’s all about trusting God to do what’s right in our lives. And it’s so important that the author of Hebrews informs us: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is (exists), and is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) And He goes on to name several men of God, who manifested great faith, like Noah, who built and ark just by God’s say so. 

Then there’s Enoch who pleased God so much that he didn’t die, but was simply translated from the earth, simply walked out of it, simply disappeared. (smile) And Abraham, the father of modern-day faith, who picked up his personal family and belongings and went out into the wild, somewhere unknown, simply because a God he did not know told him to do it and made several promises of what would happen if he did. Abraham was even willing to offer up his one son of his old age Isaac, because God told him to, testing his faith. And you can find all those stories of the heroes of faith in Hebrews 11. 

Now, obviously not all of us will ever reach the level of faith that those heroes achieved, but it’s what we desperately need to work towards if we are to live the victorious life that Christ died for us to have. And the author of Hebrews gives us yet another poignant word on faith, which says: ‘Let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering (for he is faithful that promised.) (Heb. 10:23) Oh my people we need to steadfastly hold on to our faith in God because our God is ever-faithful, He does not disappoint those who put their sincere trust in Him. 

That doesn’t mean that life will be a bed of roses, and everything we want we will get, but it does mean that most things in God’s will, if it’s in His plan for our lives we will get them. God will not allow anything or anyone but us, to stop our destiny. And sometimes He won’t even allow us to do it, He’ll keep applying the pressure so that we eventually give in and do it His way. I can tell you that from personal experience. For if I had had my way, I wouldn’t be writing the Bit today. But His tenacity eventually forced me to capitulate. (smile) 

And let’s not forget this most important fact: God is not there to please us and make our every whim and fancy come true. We are in existence to please Him, to do His will, to live out the plan He has in store for every life that He creates. Let’s remember that He is the Master and we the slaves, He’s the Father and we the children, He’s the Potter and we the clay, and He can shape us any which way He desires, and we need to go along with His will through staunch and true faith in Him. 

Now here’s this other beautiful scripture on faith versus fear, that comes from the pen of Bruh Paul to his protégé Timothy. He writes: ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound  (disciplined) mind.’ (2 Tim. 1:7) Wow! What an amazing scripture. It shows that from the very get go, the Lord has given us a spirit of faith, not of fear, but like all the other stuff He’s given us, we need to then nourish that faith. It’s like the fruit of the Spirit, the seeds of which we all have planted in our inner man, but we then have to water and nourish them so that they can grow and be manifested in our actions. 

That means, as Gal. 5:22-23 explains: the seeds of LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering (patience), gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), meekness, temperance (self-control) were all planted in us the day we accepted Christ as Lord and Saviour, and the Holy Spirit then came to dwell within us. But those fruit of godliness and righteousness can’t, or won’t manifest themselves in our behaviour until and unless we water and nurture them and help them to grow into beautiful fruit of the Spirit. And please note that faith (faithfulness) is one of those fruit that needs to be nourished and nurtured by us, if we expect them to show forth in Jesus’ name. 

And I’m chuckling here because time and space have again forced us to close for the day, and we haven’t even spoken about Jesus and the subject of faith in His life yet. But hopefully, if God allows us to see tomorrow, we will get to Jesus yet. That’s a promise! (smile) Now let’s go home declaring (chuh!!!) our Thursday Blessings, which the Lord has generously bestowed on us to do His earthly work. 

As one strong and sincere voice: ‘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 every day! Amen!’ 

Now, if we were sincere about those declarations, (ah Lord eh!!!) let’s go out and share them just as generously in helping others as Jesus did with us. Much LOVE!

…faith is of the utmost importance in the Christian’s life…but unfortunately…it can only be learned by hard experience… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ  

Today’s Scrip-Bit   15 December 2022 Psalm 118:8.

Psalm 118:8.       It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. (the middle verse of the Bible) 

Well friends, today, Thursday, the penultimate day of the workweek is supposed to bring us a big snowstorm. Thankfully though, so far we’ve only seen wind and freezing rain in my area. But if the weather forecast holds true, the evening commute home will be terrible. Let’s hope and pray that they are somewhat wrong about the intensity of the storm. And why would we desire an intense physical storm when we already have so many intense emotional and spiritual ones eh? 

No way! However, those latter storms can be lessened and controlled by being in association with Jesus Christ, the divine storm calmer. But the physical ones are a different story. Oh, He can calm those too, if He so desires, like he did back on the sea of Galilee, when ‘He rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. (Mark 4:39) But usually, in those cases, He allows Mother Nature to take her course without interference. (smile) 

And I believe the best way to handle that situation is to have Jesus calm our own personal storms, so that we can concentrate on the physical ones around us. But you know another li’l ‘secrat’? Jesus can also help us handle the physical storms around us, help us to stay calm in them and navigate our way safely through them. And all God’s children gave a loud shout of gratitude: ‘All glory and honour be to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ who enables us to handle whatever storms come into our lives, be they physical, emotional or whatever!’ 

Ah friends, Jesus’ reach is infinite, and His awesome power is unimaginable, unstoppable, without end! As Jesus said so clearly when talking about it being easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter heaven. ‘With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.’ (Matt. 19:26) That my people, is one of the first things we need to believe when we come to Jesus. As Jesus said to the disciples after calming the storm we spoke of above. ‘Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith? (Mark 4:40) But without that staunch faith, everything else is useless. 

As the Big Library (smile) clearly spells it out in the book of Hebrews: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) Yes my faithful brethren, we must believe that God exists and rewards those who diligently seek Him. And Hebrews goes on to give us examples of the patriarchs who exhibited that kind of strong faith in God and saw most of their dreams and His promises come true. People like, Noah, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, etc. etc. 

And in these difficult, evil and turbulent times, it’s that kind of strong faith we believers need to stop the drain of people from Christ’s church, and instead bring them back to His fold, and also bring new believers to Him. But that can only happen if we the current and supposed faithful believers do our jobs; talk about Jesus to others and live the kind of life that will endear them to us and therefore to Him. We have to stop being lazy and lethargic, and override our fear of man and the world, and trust our heavenly Father to take care of us, as He’s so faithfully promised to do. 

At this most important time in the annals of history, we believers need to grab the words of Psalm 118 and eat them, let them fill us up with faith. We must be able to unequivocally declare: (steups!!!) ‘I called upon the Lord in distress: the Lord answered me, and set me in a large (broad) place. The Lord is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me? The Lord taketh my part with them that help me: therefore shall I see my desire upon them that hate me. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes.’ (Ps. 118:5-9) 

Wow mih bredrin! That says it all right there! If we sincerely put our trust in Almighty God, we won’t fear what finite and frail man can do to us. And that brings us right to the crux of the problem: fear and faith; their interconnectivity. You simply can’t have both at the same time. It’s either one or the other; for fear kills faith and faith drives out fear. As they say, when faith comes a knocking, send faith to answer the door. And some of Jesus most popular words down here on earth were ‘Fear not.’ 

Yes friends, He was either telling people to not fear, or complimenting them on the strength and power of their faith. And you can find a great example of the latter in Mark 10:46-52, when the blind beggar Bartimaeus kept crying out to Jesus as He was passing through the streets of Jericho: ‘Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy on me.’ (Mark 10:47) Jesus finally had the blind man brought to Him and asked what he wanted. Without hesitation, he replied ‘Lord, that I might receive my sight. And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way, thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.’ (Mark 10:51-52) 

Now that’s the kind of staunch and believing faith we need today. Unfortunately though, today’s church seems mostly filled with fear and very little faith, otherwise we would be more industrious in working and living for Jesus, and the devil would not have such a stranglehold on the world, especially on our children of this generation. Ah mih people, we can’t allow this fearmongering and strife-filled situation to continue in our world. It’s our job to clean it up. When Jesus comes back, He expects to find a strong, unified, and diligent church. 

Has it ever occurred to us that the reason, or one of the reasons He has not yet returned, is that His church is weak, fearful, disunited and lazy? But even in our unfaithfulness, He’s seen it fit to shower us with undeserved blessings which enable us to do His earthly work. We call them our Thursday Blessings, and they need to be declared (chuh!!!) out loud to be activated. So, let’s do that right now nuh. 

As one strong and sincere voice: ‘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 every day! Amen!’ 

And I’m chuckling here as I think what a nightmare it would be if I had to write ‘declare’ (steups!!!) so often every week. Thanks for the power of copying. But seriously though my fellow saints, we now need to take those blessings and go out into this evil world and sincerely and diligently use them to proclaim Christ’s wonderful name and His magnificent gospel as we have been commissioned to do! Much LOVE!

…go ye therefore…and teach all nations…that’s our Great Commission… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ       

Today’s Scrip-Bit   17 November 2022 Hebrews 11:6.

Hebrews 11:6.        But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

It’s Thursday, the penultimate day of our work week, and possibly a harbinger of what our weekend will be like; snow filled! (smile) My computer tells me that snow is in the offing. And if that’s so, then the winter weather is here to stay, meaning we had better get used to it as soon as possible, for we might just be in for a long, cold season. 

But as the familiar saying goes, ‘Who cares eh?’ Not us believers in Christ Jesus, for once you have Jesus in your life, it will be clear sailing. (smile) Well that’s not totally true, the sailing will not always be clear, but Jesus will ALWAYS be there to guide and protect you and bring you out safely from any tough times. That’s His promise! 

Listen to Bruh Paul in his first missive to the church at Corinth. ‘There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.’ (1 Cor. 10:13) 

What a marvellous God we serve my people! He will allow temptations to come against us, to test our faith and our backbone, but He will always be there in the wings ready to help us if we falter, either finding a way for us to escape it, or by giving us His divine help to overcome it. 

But, as with everything else in the Lord’s kingdom, that requires, belief, faith, trust, surrender and good communication with our God. And also remember what the psalmist said in Psalm 91, subtitled ‘God is a refuge and fortress,’ long before the coming of Jesus. 

Read these words of glorious promise with me. ‘Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the Most High, thy habitation (dwelling place); There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in thy ways. They shall bear (lift) thee up in their hands, lest thou dash (strike) thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder (cobra): the young lion and dragon (serpent) shalt thou trample under feet.’ (Ps. 91:9-13) 

And if you don’t believe the psalmist, then check out Jesus’ conversation with Satan when He was tempted in the wilderness. That’s the scripture he used to inveigle Jesus to throw himself down from the pinnacle of the temple. ‘And (Satan) saith unto him (Jesus), If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge over thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.’ (Matt. 4:6) 

Yes friends, Satan knows scripture, better than us to boot, for remember he was once the archangel Lucifer, and probably even had a hand in helping to write it. And that’s why He knows exactly where to strike to get us to do his evil bidding. But like Jesus we must refute his arguments with scriptural refutations. (smile) What was Jesus’ reply to Satan’s entreaty? ‘Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt (test) the Lord thy God.’ (Matt. 4:7) 

Now Jesus refutation comes directly from Deuteronomy 6:16, where Moses lectured the Israelites on the sorrows of disobedience to God’s laws. And I like to add to it, ‘neither shall thou tempt (test) the children of God.’ (smile) Oh my people, living for Jesus in this evil, sin-filled world can be difficult, but if we hold strong to our faith, then He will enable us to come through with shining colours and eventually receive that crown of righteousness that Bruh Paul told Timothy awaits all those who endure to the end with Jesus. (2 Tim. 4:8) 

And the author of Hebrews tells us thus about faith. ‘Now faith is the substance (realization) of things hoped for, the evidence (conviction) of things not seen.’ (Heb. 11:1) That simply means we hope for what we don’t see, but by faith, strong trust in God, believe that it will come to pass. And then the author of Hebrews goes on to tell us that it was by faith that the elders received a good report. (Heb. 11:2) 

Yes, saints of Christ, it was indeed by faith, strong trust in Jehovah God, that all the forefathers of our faith did what they did, and that set the stage for us. Consequently, the writer of Hebrews can further tell us: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) 

And that my fellow believers is our faith in a nutshell. We must believe that Jehovah God exists, and that He rewards those who diligently seek Him and thus obey His laws. Matter fix! And it’s not rocket science, but simple common sense. Although common sense seems to have gone the way of the dodo bird in these current times. (smile) 

Now, here is the continuation of that promise from Psalm 91, which ought to lift up our faith even more this Thursday morning at the beginning of winter. ‘Because he hath set his LOVE upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in time of trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him, and show him my salvation.’ (Ps. 91:14-16) 

Wow mih bredrin! Yuh see what the Lord promises to do for those who believe that He exists and the rewards He will offer to those who faithfully serve and revere Him! And He’s doing it every day of our lives with the blessings, the mercies and the grace He bestows on us that we don’t deserve. And there’s this particular group of blessings that we call our Thursday Blessings, which we need to activate by declaring (awright!!!) them out loud. 

So let’s do that right now nuh. As one strong and sincere voice: ‘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 every day! Amen!’ 

And having activated those blessings, it’s now our bounden duty to go out and use them for the betterment of our world and to bring others to Christ! Much LOVE!

…life is all about Almighty God…belief in…hope…faith…trust and total surrender to Him… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ       

Today’s Scrip-Bit   7 June 2022 Psalm 119:105.

Psalm 119:105.        Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

Well, a good Tuesday morning to all you my wonderful Scrip-Bit friends and families! And I sincerely hope that all of us have the wonderful light of Jesus shining in us this day, regardless of the weather we are currently experiencing, which, in my case, is wet and cloudy. (smile) But that’s the good thing about the light of Jesus, it shines whatever the actual state of the weather. Bless His Holy name! Consequently, I can’t understand why many more people are not turning to Jesus in these dark, dreary, confused and strife-filled times, when He is the epitome of light shining in the darkness. 

He said it Himself: ‘I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.’ (John 8:12) And though the Pharisees didn’t believe Him, because He witnessed to Himself, or blew His own horn, the truth is, He is indeed the ONLY ONE who can light our way when the enemy and his dark and evil schemes come marching, or rather creeping up on us. For let us remember that the deadliest sins don’t leap up on us, but they creep up stealthily like the wily devil, their originator. 

That’s why this magnificent, reassuring and poignant verse of scripture should be written deep in our hearts and thus always be at the tip of our tongues when the forces of darkness try to overcome us. So please say it with me, with strong conviction and confidence: ‘Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.’ (Ps. 119:105) And yuh better believe it is my friends! For it is only through the grace and mercy of God’s Word can we ever make it successfully through this earthly life. 

And if by chance God’s Word isn’t currently a lamp unto your feet and a light unto your path, then you’d better make it so real soon, like today, like right now, if you truly desire to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Bruh David said it in so many words. ‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.’ (Ps. 27:13) Yes friends, if we don’t believe in God, His goodness and mercy, His unconditional LOVE and compassionate heart, then there’s little. or no chance, of seeing His goodness in our lives. 

Then Bruh David went on to make another monumental statement: ‘Wait (in faith) on the Lord, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait (in faith), I say, on the Lord.’ (Ps. 27:14). That’s the other part to the story my people: first we believe, then we wait patiently, that’s in faith, on the Lord ‘s timing. For remember this other scripture which says so explicitly: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) 

That’s why faith is so important in our Christian walk. In fact, it’s the very basis, the Christ-like foundation on which we ought to build our lives. For as the author of Hebrews says about faith at the beginning of that chapter: ‘Now faith is the substance (realization) of things hoped for, the evidence (conviction) of things not seen.’ (Heb. 11:1) And as the scholars tell us, that isn’t so much a definition of faith, but what faith does. It provides substance and also evidence. That’s assurance and a sense of proof that results in conviction. 

And the scholars go on to explain: ‘The difference between assurance and evidence would be minimal were it not for the phrase qualifying each: of things hoped for and of things not seen. The first involves future hope; the second involves present realities that are unseen. The first includes the hope of the resurrection, the return of Christ, and the glorification of the saints (that’s us). The second involves unseen realities, such as forgiveness of sin through Christ’s sacrifice and the present intercession of Christ in heaven. Hope in faith relating to future conviction is faith relating to the present.’ 

So friends, regardless of whether we’re dealing with, or thinking about the present or the future, hope or great expectations, that lead to faith, is absolutely essential. In fact, in all walks of life, not only Christianity, is hope and faith totally necessary if we are to grow personally, or our organizations are to improve and become successful. And I believe these marvellous words of Bruh Paul in his letter to the Roman church, admirably describes it. ‘For we are saved by hope, but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience (perseverance) wait (eagerly wait) for it.’ (Rom. 8:24-25) 

So, life in general, and our Christian walk in particular, calls for certain words and characteristics if they are to be successfully attained. Words like; hope, belief, faith, waiting, patience, perseverance, expectation, and doing them all with a modicum of eagerness even when there seems to be total darkness surrounding us. Life is a challenge friends, and the Christian one even a bigger hill to climb. The Lord didn’t make us to be soft and fragile, spinless and fearful, but full of belly and backbone so we can do His work. 

That brings us to these words of reassurance from Bruh Paul to Timothy, which we all know, but obviously don’t invoke, or use as often and as faithfully as we ought. So please declare with me: ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound (disciplined) mind.’ (2 Tim. 1:7) And those are words for us to continually live by my fellow saints! That’s because they reinforce the words we earlier spoke of, that God’s Word is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path. 

And with all of that under our belts; that is, written in our hearts, souls, bodies and minds, ready to be put into action at a moment’s notice, there is no chance whatsoever for the powers of darkness to cover us and thus block out the light that’s our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! So please, let’s give Him the ultimate praise and thanks that we can ever give, not that from our mouths, but from the way we live our lives in His mighty name! 

Now for those of us who are sincerely trying to do that, let’s go home declaring (awright!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know to whom we belong lock, stock and barrel! 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 declared that, we must now go out and share that awesome LOVE and friendship of Christ with others, just as generously as He’s shared it with us, so that they too can come to know and LOVE Him like we do! Why, you ask? Simply because it’s our bounden duty! (smile) Much LOVE!

…come hell or high water…Christ is the answer… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit   1 June 2022 Mark 4:40.

Mark 4:40.      And he said unto them, why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith? 

Here it is my people, a somewhat cloudy and rainy first day of June, the sixth month of the year! Can you imagine it, May, which just recently begun, is now finished and we are into June? Brother! The days sure are flying past with speedy wings. The good thing though is that it brings us into some good summer weather! Glory be! But we must realize that the summer days fly faster than the winter ones and try to put the brakes on the next couple of months, because if they fly just as fast as the earlier part of the year, then we’ll soon be back to winter again. And that, we surely want to forestall for as long as possible. (smile) 

But come what may, let’s remember, as Bruh Paul so nicely puts it in his letter to the Philippians: ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!’ (Phil. 4:13) And that’s the gospel truth my people! Once whatever we need to do is in God’s will, then we will be given the wherewithal to do it. Our part is simply to believe it, then put it into action. Unfortunately though, both believing and activating our belief is not always easy, and it’s only as we go through the tough times of life, which we all face at some time or other, that we are able to understand and acquire the right perspective. 

Now, I do believe that the following passages of scripture, where the Good Book opened this morning, were meant for us to read and ponder upon and bring some measure of reassurance to our weary souls. In it, Isaiah talks about ‘Thanksgiving for God’s mercies,’ something we certainly ought to give on a regular basis. So please read with me. ‘And in that day thou shalt say, O Lord, I will praise thee: though thou wast angry with me, thine anger is turned away, and thou comfortedest me. 

Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. Therefore with joy shall we draw water out of the wells of salvation. And in that day shall ye say, Praise the Lord, call upon his name, declare his doings (deeds, works) among the people, make mention that his name is exalted. Sing unto the Lord; for he hath done excellent things: this is known in all the earth. Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion: for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee.’ (Is. 12:1-6) 

And that’s the indisputable truth my brethren! The Holy One of Israel, the Lord God Jehovah is indeed mighty in our midst! Who else is like unto Him eh? NOBODY! That’s why we ought to LOVE and treasure Him, glorify, worship and exalt His Holy Name! Continually sing His praises, for He alone is our salvation and our strength. Yes, He gave us His salvation through the sacrificial death of His Son Jesus Christ, which atoned for our sins, paid our sin debt in full! For that alone we ought to bow down and worship Him, glorify Him like there’s no tomorrow. And it’s only because of Jesus’ death that we have the option for a tomorrow, and a glorious one at that! 

So why do so many of us talk one thing and then do another eh? Why do we talk about faith and then when the time comes to put into action, to prove it, we falter and disappoint our Saviour eh? And I’m talking particularly about the last couple of years when the pandemic and much unrest in the streets were plaguing our world. Where was the church, the supposed body of Christ eh? Where were we the supposed faithful believers, the mighty Christians? Definitely not as front and centre as we ought to have been. Too many of us believers were tested and found to be wanting. 

And why was that eh? That’s because we don’t truly believe, we still have too much of the world in us, we don’t fully trust and surrender ourselves to His will, And until we do that, whatever faith we claim to have will be useless. Oh, we do talk a good talk, but when the chips start to fly, and we are required to come up strong, to come up higher for Christ, we run and hide. No wonder one of Jesus’ continual comments was on faith. Some about great faith, some about little faith, some about no faith. But He always homed in on the faith of those around Him. 

And this scripture is possibly one of the best examples of that. We talking about the time Jesus and the disciples were crossing the Sea of Galilee and a terrible storm arose, battering their boat until it even began to take in water. Obviously, the disciples were afraid, but Jesus slept calmly on a pillow in the stern of the boat through all the commotion. 

When they couldn’t stand it anymore, they awakened Him, saying: ‘Master, carest thou not that we perish? And he arose and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto them, why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith? And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this (who can this be), that even the wind and the sea obey him.’ (Mark 4:38-41) 

Oh my people, it could only be the one who created the winds and the seas in the first place. Who else would they listen and react to so quickly eh? And though we decry the disciples for their lack of faith back then, many of us are no better right now, when we know even more than they did. And I like how the scholars describes the passages of scripture from Mark 4:35 to 5:43. 

They say: ‘Jesus takes His disciples from the classroom to the laboratory. Having just taught them that God’s power will cause His kingdom to grow to worldwide proportions and influence  (4:30-32 – the parable of the mustard seed), Jesus now performs four miracles that demonstrate this divine might. God’s power is seen in overcoming (1) the danger of a storm (4:35-41); (2) demons in a victim possessed (5:1-20); (3) disease in a woman physically ravished (5:21-34); and (4) the death of a little girl (5:35-43).’ 

And that’s exactly what’s been happening to us in these last troublesome years. Jesus has taken us from the classroom to the laboratory to test our book knowledge in real life. Remember friends, we were born for a time such as this; meaning that we were born to shine bright in this particular time. So please let’s pick it up nuh. I truly believe that none of us have yet realized our full potential, which means that even the best of us can do better. And remember, since we’ve been bought with the precious blood of Christ, that we are no longer working for ourselves, but for Him. That ought to stir up some passion and fire in our souls and bellies. (smile) 

Now, for those of us who are indeed trying, let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. Altogether 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!’ 

Please note too, that if we endure until the very end, then that future will be even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine! Now, that ought to put a smile on our faces and give us cause to endure right to the end. (smile) Much LOVE!

…a little faith is better than no faith at all…for without faith…it is impossible to please God… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit   20 March 2022 Hebrews 4:16.

Hebrews 4:16.     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.

Ah chuh! It looks like another wet and cloudy day is in the offing…but it’s better than a white and snowy one though! (smile) Anyway it’s Sunday, so we are celebrating the Lord’s Day with praise and thanksgiving in His gates and courts and physically gathering in His sanctuaries to encourage and rejoice with other believers, like we haven’t been able to do for two long years because of the Covid 19 virus! And all God’s people gave a loud and thankful shout of Glory Hallelujah! 

Yes friends, it’s oh so good to be able to go into God’s sanctuary again, reminiscent of the opening words of Psalm 122 titled – Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem – where Bruh David declares: ‘I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go up into the house of the Lord.’ (Ps. 122:1) Oh there’s nothing better than gathering in God’s house to sing and praise His holy name, to give thanks and receive in return His refreshing renewal of all our energy; physical, mental, emotional and spiritual! 

And that’s why this Sunday morning, the first day of spring, we are going to take a leap of faith and sing this re-energizing song “Come Boldly to the Throne of Grace” written by Daniel Herbert (1751 – 1833), a congregational minister who served at Sudbury in Suffolk, England. Why? Because, as one commentator wisely opines: ‘It is a passionate and comforting call to all who feel the weight of their sin to come and find mercy at the feet of Christ.’ Oh my people, I couldn’t put it any better! 

So, with sincere hearts and voices let’s go boldly to the throne of grace, offering up our sacrifices of praise in a mid-tempo but ever so soulful and heartfelt version of this marvellous song. ‘Come boldly to the throne of grace, Ye wretched sinners come, and lay your load at Jesus feet, And plead what He has done. How can I come? Some soul may say, I’m lame and cannot walk; My guilt and sin have stopped my mouth, I sigh, but dare not talk. 

Come boldly to the throne of grace, Though lost, and blind, and lame; Jehovah is the sinner’s friend, And ever was the same. He makes the dead to hear His voice; He makes the blind to see, The sinner lost, He came to save, And set the prisoner free. Come boldly to the throne of grace, For Jesus fills the throne; and those He kills, He makes alive; He hears the sigh or groan; Poor bankrupt souls, Who feel and know, the hell of sin within; 

Come Boldly to the throne of grace; The Lord will take you in. Come Boldly to the throne of grace; The Lord will take you in…the Lord will take you in…Yes the Lord will take you in…take you in’ 

Yes my faithful brethren, of that fact you can be totally assured; the Lord will NEVER turn away anyone who comes to Him in sincerity and truth! He sent His only begotten Son to earth to save us miserable sinners, so why then would He turn away any of that ilk who come to Him for rescue eh? No reason whatsoever! Remember He doesn’t want to lose even one soul to the enemy, so He will not refuse the sinner’s plea for mercy and grace. And there’s this magnificent and reassuring passage of scripture which tells it all, all about the sympathetic Christ. 

The author of Hebrews explains it thus: ‘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 to our profession (confession of faith). For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (sympathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. 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.’ (Heb. 4:14-16) 

Oh my fellow saints, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is the best thing that’s ever happened to us! Wow! In His earthly sojourn He suffered all the temptation that we are currently experiencing, but without committing any sin, thus, He can now empathize with what we are going through and doesn’t have to point fingers at us in condemnation, but instead offers us reconciliation and righteousness. As Bruh Paul says in the opening verse of that marvellous Chapter 8 of Romans: ‘There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.’ (Rom. 8:1) 

So, once we recognize our frailties, our weaknesses and sins and come to Christ for forgiveness, He doesn’t condemn us, but cleanses us and clothes us in His Holy Spirit to enable us to walk a better walk with Him as our steadfast focus. And please remember that it’s only through Christ’s death and resurrection, and in His holy name that we are even able to go to God’s throne, because God cannot stand sin. And Bruh Paul says it in Ephesians: ‘According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord: In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of (in) him.’ (Eph. 3:11-12) 

Yes, it was God’s eternal purpose to redeem our sinful souls through Christ Jesus and thus give us bold and confident access to His holy presence. But please, let’s not forget that it’s only through Christ, and in His name that we can enter God’s throne room. That reminds us of Jesus words to Thomas, the doubting disciple: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the father but by me.’ (John 14:6) And Hebrews corroborates it: ‘But Christ as a son over his own house, whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of hope firm unto the end.’ (Heb. 3:6) 

Oh my people, all we are talking about is only possible if we hold on tightly to the hope and faith we profess, that we boast of in Christ Jesus. For as they say, Faith doesn’t make it easy, faith makes it possible. Yes, it’s only with sure faith that we can ever hold firm and endure unto the end. And there is no better way to end today’s proceedings than with this wonderful verse of scripture from Hebrews. ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) 

That’s it my fellow saints! There’s no use talking about God unless we sincerely and strongly believe that He exists and also bountifully rewards those who actively seek Him. And hopefully, that’s why we are gathered here today…in faith, to seek His awesome presence! Much LOVE!

…if you know of Christ…and don’t sincerely LOVE Him…then something’s seriously wrong with you… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit   5 October 2021 Hebrews 10:23.

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

Well, after two days of almost steady rain, it’s finally eased up. But everything is still wet,  and the skies are still dark, no sign of the sun, so who knows what’s going to happen next. The good thing though is that despite what we see or feel, or what may come our way, the wise thing to do is to stay with God! He controls everything and has promised to not allow more than we can bear to come upon us. He will give us the strength to overcome. A strength that we never knew we had. That’s why Bruh Paul says: ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!’ (Phil. 4:13) 

And don’t forget this most marvellous promise either from Peter: ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.’ (2 Pet. 5:6-7) Yes friends, when things get rough, or we just don’t know what do, wisdom dictates that we lose our inherent pride and arrogance, and humble ourselves before our heavenly Father, because He cares for us, even more than our earthly parents. We have life in Him, there’s hope, a bright future, and the awesome promise never to leave nor forsake us! 

Oh my people, Jesus promised it in so many words: ‘and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt. 28:20) So we have no reason to fear or feel lost in the turmoil of this current world. That is, if we put our lives in God’s hands, let Him lead and guide us through His Holy Spirit that indwells us. He is always there for us, but we have to go to Him, and stay with Him, fully believing that He can and will do all that He has promised. Remember, walking with God calls for faith, for trust and surrender. 

As Hebrews so clearly puts it: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is (that He exists), and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) And then you ask, what then is this faith you talk about? It’s just believing for things that you don’t see, things that God’s promised, and waiting expectantly for them. For as Hebrews wisely advises: ‘Let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised).’ (Heb. 10:23) 

Yes, my fellow believers, we very much need to stand strong in our faith, because life is never easy, therefore, we need someone more powerful than us to help us walk through it successfully. And who is more powerful than Jesus eh? NOBODY! He conquered hell, death and the grave through His triumphant resurrection on the Easter morning so long ago. That’s why He could make this amazing statement: ‘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 brethren, who else could make such a truthful statement eh? No one but Jesus, because He did exactly what He said! That means no matter what happens we can rest assured that God is working in our lives for our good. Bruh Paul told us that in his epistle to the church at Rome. ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.’ (Rom. 8:28) Yes my fellow saints, if we LOVE God, put our lives in His awesome hands and try our best to walk in faith with Him, then He will eventually work everything out for our good. 

So, though the rains pour down, the skies stay dark and life seems forsaken, do not believe that all is lost, for when Christ is in your life, nothing is ever lost! It might be misplaced for a while, but NEVER lost, because Jesus has faithfully promised that it won’t be. And He never makes idle promises. Why would Father God send His only Son to die on the cross that we might be forgiven, then leave us in the lurch after that eh? 

No way! Bruh Paul made that abundantly clear to the Roman church when he wrote: ‘What shall we then say to these things (that God has done for us through Jesus, like justification, sanctification and reconciliation)? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?’ (Rom. 8:31-32) 

That’s only common-sense friends. Why would God put Himself out for us, then just leave us to fend for ourselves afterwards eh? No reason whatsoever, since that’s not the kind of God He is. And Bruh Paul emphasizes that in his epistle to the Philippians: ‘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) Oh, how wonderful that is my fellow believers; that the Lord will continue working in us, offering us His grace, LOVE and all that we need until Christ returns! 

And as the scholars explain: ‘This speaks of the Christian’s eternal security. For God had a purpose in view when He began His saving work in the Philippians, and that purpose will neither be abandoned nor unrealized.’ Glory be, mih people! The Lord’s plans for us will not be thwarted! You can’t beat that news! But that means we must also play our part in the partnership. As James advises: ‘Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw night (near) to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts ye doubleminded.’ (James 4:7-8) 

So friends,  our role is basically to stay close to God, and if we do, He will work everything out for our good. Now, for those of us who are sincerely trying to stay attached to God, let’s go home declaring (ah Lord eh!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know to whom we belong. As one strong, confident and sincere voice: ‘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 the upshot of that declaration (yeah!!!) is that we must now go out and share that amazing LOVE and friendship of Christ with others, so that they too can come to know and LOVE Him! Much LOVE!

…in Christ Jesus…there is relief from this sinful world…and eternal freedom in the next…                        

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 March 2021 Psalm 40:5.

Psalm 40:5.     ​Many, O Lord my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward they cannot be reckoned (recounted) up in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.

Well my people, on this Sunday morning in mid-March, when the clock has just gone forward an hour in the controversial Daylight Savings Time situation, there is some news leaning towards the good side, but whether it is sensible to enact it, that’s something else. (smile) 

And the good news is that physical in church worship has been eased, but still under the last protocol; masks, cleaning, physical distancing, no actual choir singing, etc. etc. Now it’s debatable whether all the effort need to do that for the small crowd that might come is worth it. Then we would still have to do some virtual worship for those who won’t come. That puts a great strain on the priest and the few people who usually do all the hard and dirty work. And with the many variants prevalent these days, my recommendation would be to leave it as it is; just do the virtual worship. 

But since no decision has been made on that as yet, let’s get on with our virtual worship. (smile) And today we’re opening with a marvelous semi-old song written by New Jersey born Johnson Oatman Jr. (1856-1922) And it’s such a realistic and providential song, that if we had been singing and doing what it says all along, feasting on thanksgiving and praise, we might not be ensnared in the Corona pandemic right now. So let’s open our hearts and give voice to the wonderful hymn, ‘Count Your Blessings!’Raise those voices to heaven in a sweet, scintillating, harmonious, up tempo version as the beautiful music leads us in worship! 

‘When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed, When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost, Count your many blessings, name them one by one, And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done. (Refrain: Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your blessings, see what God hath done; Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.) Are you ever burdened with a load of care? Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear? Count your many blessings, ev’ry doubt will fly, And you will be singing as the days go by. [Refrain] 

When you look at others with their lands and gold, Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold; Count your many blessings, money cannot buy Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high. [Refrain] So, amid the conflict, whether great or small, Do not be discouraged, God is over all; Count your many blessings, angels will attend, Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end. 

So Count your blessings, see what God hath done; Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your many blessings, see what God hath done. (Now let’s sing that chorus again so we’ll remember it.) Count your blessings, see what God hath done; Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.’ 

Oh my faithful saints in Christ, that message is ever so important to all of us! Why, you ask? First of all, let’s check out what counting your blessings means. It basically means to be grateful for the good things in our lives, as well as to stop ourselves from becoming too unhappy about the bad things we must all go through at some times in this earthly life. 

And the website www.godtube gives us this interesting explanation. ‘God truly gives us so many blessings each and every single day. Some may even be so small that we might overlook them. The classic hymn ‘Count Your Blessings’ truly reminds us to stop and give thanks for all God has done in our lives. This is definitely a pause we all need to take. Amen.’ And if that isn’t the indisputable truth, I don’t know what is! 

Yes friends, in this busy world, where we’re so busy going nowhere fast, we all need to take time every so often and count the good things we have, instead of labouring on and bewailing the bad things, or the things we don’t have. That’s the only way to keep our stress, greed and envy level down. Let’s stop looking at what we don’t have and concentrate on what we do have, especially since many of us are living better than most of our fellow human beings. 

As www.godtube continues to tell us: ‘‘If you always find yourself numbering your troubles, you will never find time counting your blessings. There is no use becoming frustrated in your difficulties while you have all opportunities hiding in them for a turnover.’ That’s wisdom in spades my brethren! If you concentrate on counting your troubles, you’ll never find the time to count your blessings and the many opportunities that are hiding in those troubles. 

And Bruh David puts it ever so nicely for us in Psalm 40 – Praise for answered prayer. ‘Many, O Lord my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward they cannot be reckoned (recounted) up in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.’ (Ps. 40:5) 

That’s more indisputable truth my people. We can never count the many blessings that God has given to us during our lifetime…and is still giving to us every day! The problem is that we consider blessings as big, bright baubles and bangles, whereas God takes pleasure in meeting our smallest needs when we least expect it. It’s time for us to stop looking for big blessings, and check out the small stuff. We’d all be amazed at the number of small but wonderful blessings that the Lord has bestowed on us down through the years. So many, that we would be unable to count them. 

As Job said when he acknowledged God’s justice: ‘I know it’s so of a truth: but how should a man be just with God (how can a man be righteous with God)?…Which doeth great things past finding out; yea, and wonders without number.’ (Job 9:1,10) And yes, Job and Bruh David are two men who ought to know of God’s goodness and faithfulness, because they experienced hardship but never gave up on Him. That’s why Hebrews declares: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) Now, I think that’s a very fitting note to end on. (smile) 

So let’s go forth and start counting our blessings nuh, instead of our troubles. It will make our lives so much more interesting and fulfilling. Much LOVE!

…in every thing give thanks…for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus…concerning you… (1 Thess. 5:18)  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 February 2021 Jeremiah 29:12.

Jeremiah 29:12.     ​Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto (listen to) you.

Aye friends, can you believe it, we in February now, January done already! Brother! How come January finish so quick eh? Didn’t we just celebrate New Year’s? But with all the recent confusion, it seems we never noticed January just speeding by like greased lightning! (smile) And if we don’t pay attention, February, and even the whole of 2021 could just speed by and leave us in the same sad and tragic situations that it began with, or even worse ones. Who knows how this world shaping up these days eh? Only our heavenly Father…and He doesn’t seem to be letting on. 

So what are we supposed to do under those uncertain and ofttimes critical circumstances eh? Just keep on doing what we been doing; having faith and trusting in the Lord God Almighty and LOVING each other like there was no tomorrow! If you claim to believe in God, His promises and all that He stands for, then you have no choice but to keep praying, being obedient to His word, giving thanks, helping your fellow man, and looking forward to Christ’s Second Coming. Now that also means being fully prepared for it and not getting caught with yuh pants down below yuh knees. (smile) 

Ah mih people, this world is really something else yes…but please remember that our God is also something else, and He’s bigger, brighter and better than this world. In fact, He created it and all therein, and still controls it, although some of us and the evil powers in it, think that they do. But don’t be fooled people, nothing happens in this universe unless our Lord allows it to happen. He might not cause it, but if it doesn’t suit His purpose, somewhere down the line, then it won’t get anywhere. 

So we need to understand that whatever is happening in our world today is serving some useful purpose in God’s overall plan. And yes, lots of things might seem wrong, unfair and cause us pain, sometimes it’s even our wrong decisions that cause problems. But whatever the reason, it’s still our duty to stand strong and fight the good fight, knowing that in the long run, because of God’s promises, we will come out victorious. 

And I know that many of us are scared of all the controversial stuff that’s happening in our lives right now, but remember that we believers are to be the beacons of light to the unbelieving world, so we have to put on a brave face, raise the level of our faith, and show them that Christ is indeed the ONE TRUE WAY for all mankind to go! His momentous and indisputably true words: ‘I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me,’ (John 14:6) ) tells the whole story. 

And to boost our assurance, let’s take a gander at some reassuring scriptures. (smile) And I think this verse is fitting to be the first in our set. Through the prophet Isaiah, the promise of a free offer of mercy to all. ‘So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void (empty), but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.’ (Is. 55:11) Yes friends, that’s the first lesson we need to learn; that the Lord’s promises are not empty, whatever He promises He will keep, because he’s a faithful God! 

Consequently, we also need to be faithful, for as Hebrews tells us: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) So we can’t get close to God unless we truly believe that He exists and does indeed reward those who diligently seek Him. Thus these promises through the prophet Jeremiah: ‘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) 

And how will we reap that promise? ‘Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto (listen to) you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.’ (Jer. 29:12-13) Oh my people, there’s that recurring theme that runs throughout the entire Good Book; we need to continually seek God with all our hearts, souls, bodies and minds. That’s a basic part of both the Old and New Covenants He made with us. Sincerely seeking Him is paramount to all that we do. 

That brings us to these last few practical steps from Bruh Paul to the church at Rome that show the awesome LOVE of Christ through the believer’s actions. ‘Rejoicing in hope; patient (persevering) in tribulation; continuing instant (steadfastly) in prayer…Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not…Recompense (repay) to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest (have regard for good things) in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth (depends on) you, live peacefully with all men.’ (Rom. 12:12,15,17-18) 

No, living for Christ is not easy, especially in these controversial and turbulent times, but when we remember that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us, then we know that it’s all possible in Jesus’ name! Now, let’s participate in that recurring theme above nuh; seeking God sincerely, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, letting Him know all our hopes and fears and desires. 

As one 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 natural disasters like storms, famine, drought, plagues, climate change, wildfires, earthquakes and erupting volcanoes that suddenly seem to be blossoming more and more as time goes by. 

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!’ 

And as God considers the state and motives of our hearts, we must move along and do our part, keep our promises in the partnership. Much LOVE!

…be not overcome of evil…but overcome evil with good… (Rom. 12:21)  

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