Today’s Scrip-Bit   24 June 2022 Ephesians 6:12.

Ephesians 6:12.       For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world (age), against spiritual (hosts of) wickedness in high places.

So friends, we’ve come to the end of another work week, another Friday, with a host of people, good, bad and indifferent joyfully shouting: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday!’ Yes, even the ones who don’t believe in God, or don’t even know Him, shout it. It’s like a universal mantra, where a great load is unburdened and the supposed weary slaves, many of whom are thoroughly lazy and do as little work as possible, (smile) are set free for a couple of days. And believe me, that also applies to Christians, for we do talk a good talk, but can be rather unchristian in our walk. And that’s why so many unbelievers refuse to listen to us, we don’t practice what we preach, as much as we ought to. 

All over the globe, Christians have a reputation for being hypocrites, and in a lot of cases the name is well-deserved. So, unfortunately, the many are tainted by the deeds of the few, and that is definitely not the character trait Christ wants the world to have of His church, of those who profess faith in His name and all that He’s done for mankind. And we all know how difficult it is to correct a bad reputation, even one that is untrue. Therefore, those of us who try to do the right thing are often faced with an uphill battle, not of our making. 

But let’s remember that our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ is omnipotent, and gives us the tools to do whatever He desires of us. So, if He desires us to evangelize the world, then there’s nothing the world can do to stop us. We just have to faithfully believe and get up the gumption to do Christ’s work, because we have all the necessary tools to otherwise do it, backed up all the way by the awesome power of the Holy Spirit! That means fear of failure should be a no-brainer. Remember what Bruh Paul told Timothy about fear? ‘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) 

Consequently, Christ’s followers ought to be positive, optimistic, powerful and fearless. Yes, it’s a lot to ask in this scary, turbulent and deceitful world. And though none of us will ever be perfect, because it’s not in our DNA, for only Jesus is perfect, I know that we can all come up higher than the level we are currently at. It all depends on our state of mind, our state of maturity, and if we truly want to be good soldiers for Christ. The battle is not easy, and is not one we can see, for it’s being fought in the spiritual realm, but believe me, it is still as real as if we could see it. 

Bruh Paul explained it thus to the Ephesians. ‘For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world (age), against spiritual (hosts of) wickedness in high places.’ (Eph. 6:12) So we really are in a battle, and one to the death, for the forces of evil will not give up, and neither should we. 

Meanwhile, here’s how the scholars explain that verse. ‘6:12. Wrestle, used of hand to hand combat, emphasizes the personal and individual nature of spiritual warfare waged against each local church and Christian. Flesh and blood refers to humanity. Such is not the church’s adversary. Instead, she opposes principalities (rulers), powers (authorities), rulers (world-rulers), spiritual wickedness (wicked spiritual beings), that is, fallen angels, demons, and Lucifer (Satan) himself.’ 

It is therefore an all-encompassing war that will not end until Jesus comes back and sets up his kingdom. These words of Bruh Paul to the church at Corinth also highlight the kind of warfare in which we are continually engaged. ‘For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after (according to) the flesh. (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal (of the flesh), but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds;) Casting down imaginations (arguments), and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.’ (2 Cor. 10:3-5)  

Yes my brethren, the scholars tell us that ‘Though we walk (live) in the flesh (in a body), we do not war (fight) after (according to) the flesh (human standards): The first phrase of verse 5 looks back to verse 3 and expresses the manner in which believers conduct spiritual warfare. It is by casting down (destroying) imaginations (false arguments) such as Paul’s opponents have raised.’ 

Oh my people, please remember that it’s in our minds that spiritual warfare is being fought; the devil tries to invade our minds with evil, ungodly thoughts, but we need to fight him mano-a-mano, taking every thought into captivity, that’s checking it out, using the Holy Spirit to make sure that it lines up with the word and desires of Christ. And if it doesn’t, then kicking it out! 

That’s why James warns us to ‘Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw nigh (near) to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye doubleminded….Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.’ (James 4:7-8, 10). 

And Peter strongly advises, ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world.’ (1 Pet. 5:8-9) 

Oh my fellow saints, it’s time for us to truly get serious about the battle in which we are engaged. Once you call yourself a believer in Christ Jesus, there’s no getting away from it. So please, let’s raise our level of passion, of faith and sincerity and thus put up a better fight in Jesus’ name nuh. He’s depending on us. There’s no one else to fight for Him and His church and kingdom but us. Now let’s take the first step in that direction, prayer, and through our Friday Chant, approach the throne of grace with confident humility. 

As one voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. 

So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. 

And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And, as always, after prayer, you keep whatever promises you’ve made, then wait patiently, with expectant faith for God to answer…in His own time. (smile) Much LOVE!

…the battlefield of the spiritual world is our mind…so please ensure we have on our spiritual armour… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit   30 May 2022 James 4:7.

James 4:7.       Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 

Awright mih bredrin, today, the first day of our work week, is supposed to be a scorcher; somewhere up around 30 degrees Celsius! And I know that there will lots of complaining as the first real hot day of the year hits us, despite our yearning for hot weather after the cold winter months we’ve recently experienced. And yes, there will be some people with genuine complaints because of their health situation, but for many of us it will just be a case of wishing for something, then not liking it when we get it. 

As the old people would say, be careful what you wish for, for every rose has a thorn in its stem. That’s for sure. All that glitters is not gold, nor is every beautiful face connected to a beautiful heart. In other words, outward appearances can be very deceiving. And that’s the very game that our enemy the devil delights in playing; throwing up beautiful scenarios before us, enticing us to take the bait, and when we do, only to discover that it’s only a beautiful façade, a pretty front, with nothing of substance behind it. 

That’s why Jesus called him the father of lies in John 8:44. From the very beginning he’s been a liar and deceiver, tricking Eve into eating the forbidden fruit in the garden of Eden, and unfortunately, he’s still doing the same things today, still very successfully too, we should note. For whatever reason, although we know that his sugar-coated words are really filled with salt underneath, we still fall for them way too often. 

It’s obvious we have not taken the warning from James, Jesus’ brother to heart. ‘Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw nigh (near) to you, Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye doubleminded.’ (James 4:7-8) The long and short of the story friends, is that we don’t submit to, fear or flee from Satan, but stand strong against him. Like Bruh Paul says to the Ephesians: ‘Wherefore take unto you (take up) the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all (that you can do), to STAND.’ (Eph. 6:13) 

Oh my people, the devil cannot lead us into temptation unless we allow him to. But it’s easier to resist him when we have on God’s armour and we are spiritually ready for battle. That’s why Peter also cautions us: ‘Be sober, be vigilant: because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world.’ (1 Pet. 8-9) 

Now, it doesn’t speak very highly of us if we know that the evil enemy is constantly prowling, just waiting for a chance to pounce upon an unsuspecting believer, and yet we still fall so often for his evil wiles and schemes. It’s obvious then that word of God is not as well anchored in our souls as it needs to be. We are not casting our cares sufficiently upon Him, not drawing near enough to Him, so that He can help us resist the enemy. And I believe it’s also necessary this morning for us to hear these wise and warning words from John’s first epistle.

 ‘LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh (physical desires), and the lust of the eyes (personal desires), and the pride of life (self-interests), is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever.’ (1 John 2:15-17) 

Oh my fellow saints, scriptures like that ought to be buried deep in our hearts so that they can shore us up when the devil attacks. And attack he will, again and again. But we need to resist him again and again, to stand strong in the powerful armour of God. It’s the same basic patterns he uses; physical desires, personal desires and self-interests, whatever our weakness, but since sin is such an inherent part of our nature and is so extensive around us, it’s ofttimes difficult to reject it. But reject it we must! 

And the first step in doing so is always prayer, always casting our cares before our wonderful God. So, let’s do that right now nuh, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. As one sincere voice. ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

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

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

Now, we need to keep our promises, if we expect the Lord to keep His. Much LOVE!

…we are not ready for spiritual battle…unless we are fully clothed in God’s spiritual armour… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit   1 April 2022   1 Peter 5:8.

1 Peter 5:8.      Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: 

Ah mih people, like the weather has decided to play April Fools or All Fools Day jokes on us this Friday, the first day of April 2022. When I got up and looked outside earlier this morning, wet snow was raining down from the skies. Then on looking out again, a li’l later on, I was greeted by no wet snow but fairly sunny skies. So right now, the ground’s wet, but the skies are shining with some dark clouds hovering dangerously around like rebellious children intent on disturbing the status quo. (smile) 

But foolishly, like the prince of darkness, they have reckoned without taking the awesome sunshine of Jesus Christ into their planning. They don’t realize that if He so desires, with just one wave of His mighty hand, He can scatter, obliterate ALL the darkness in the land and turn it into one of perpetual sunshine. He’s already defeated the prince of darkness, made him a toothless tiger, by dying and resurrecting from the grave, so that all his satanic majesty has now is a bark but no bite. 

That’s why we need not fear what he can do to us, for he can only do what we allow him to do. Therefore, Peter dutifully warns us: ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world.’ (1 Pet. 5:8-9) 

Yes friends, though the devil has no teeth he can frighten us with his loud roar, and thus manage to get his evil claws into us. Consequently, we must be very careful of where and with whom we walk in this uncertain and unpredictable world. No wonder Peter gave us the solution to the problem before the warning. He firmly advocates: ‘Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. 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.’ (1 Pet. 5:5-7) 

Those are indeed wise words my brethren, words that we ought to sincerely and continually heed! Why? Because they are the indisputable truth! Cousin Sol tells us the first half of the story in Proverbs, when he decrees: ‘The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation (dwelling) of the just. Surely he scorneth the scorners (proud): but he giveth grace unto the lowly (humble).’ (Prov. 3:33-34) 

And if you don’t believe Cousin Sol, then listen to the prophet Isaiah as he proclaims on the Lord’s behalf, as he condemns the idolatry of his people Israel. ‘For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite (remorseful, repentant) and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.’ (Is. 57:15) 

That says it all friends! The Lord only deals in repentant and contrite hearts and spirits! The proud He has no use for, because they don’t believe they need Him, like so many of us wrongly believe in these evil and dark times. And it’s so sad to note that in these enlightened times of technology and other advances in human endeavours that we are turning back to the dark ages in spiritual matters. We are trying to remove God from our society. Even shouting out that there is no God! But friends, now is the time when we should be seeking God more than ever, because the end times are in sight. 

Jesus spoke to the disciples about the horrific happenings that would take place before the end came. Wars and rumours of wars, false prophets, plenty devastation and human suffering, much persecution, much deception with an inordinate amount of evil, but little LOVE. However, that would just be the beginning of the end. (Matt. 24:4-12) And in these beginning of the end times that we’re currently going through, it is ever so necessary for us to hold on to the end, as Jesus specified to the disciples. ‘But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.’ (Matt. 24:13) So my brethren, we have to hang in there, living for Jesus, right to the very end, if we want to be saved. 

Then Jesus continues: ‘And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come.’ (Matt. 24:14) Now, we’re quickly coming to that stage where with the magnificent technology we now possess, the gospel abounds like it’s never done before. But Jesus isn’t finished. He says: ‘When ye therefore shall see the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand.) (Matt. 24:15) 

And what is this ‘Abomination of Desolation’ that Jesus is talking about eh? Well, according to the scholars, ‘it refers to Daniel 9:27; 11:31; 12:11; where Antiochus Epiphanes’ profanation of the Jewish temple worship would foreshadow a similar and more severe act by the eschatological Antichrist. (theology concerned with the end of the world). Whereas Antiochus offered a pig on the sacred altar of the temple, the Antichrist will present himself (2 Thess. 2:4 – Please read it). The action of desecration by Antiochus, which Daniel had predicted, will now be repeated in the future by the Antichrist as the signal of the beginning of the Great Tribulation and the breaking of the covenant “in the midst of the week” Dan. 9:27).’ 

So friends, there’s still some time to go, but how much, we don’t know, that means we ought to be prepared for whenever whatever happens! As the scripture says above there ‘whoso readeth, let him understand.’ And since we’ve read, I want us to understand. (smile) And understanding means being prepared, because we know it will come, just not when. That is a point we can’t hammer home enough my people, because Jesus said He could come at any time; today, tomorrow or years into the future…but come He will! 

And the first step in our preparation is going to Him in sincere prayer. So, let’s do that right now nuh, through our Friday Chant. As one humble and contrite voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And all of that will only mean anything when God checks the motives of our hearts and finds them in agreement with the words of our mouths. Much LOVE!

…he who has ears to hear…let him hear…and let him prepare…be in a state of constant readiness… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 December 2020 Daniel 6:16b.

Daniel 6:16b.     ​Thy God whom thou servest continually, he will deliver thee.

Well it’s Tuesday already… And yes, all day, cause time’s not waiting on me, as the duchess likes to say when I complain about how the days going by so fast. (smile) But it will soon be Christmas; that idyllic time of year when we celebrate our Saviour’s birth. Wonder what it’s going to be like this year eh, with the pandemic and the many other problems our society is currently facing? 

And yuh know what? I don’t think it’s going to be much different nuh, because people are still running helter-skelter to do Christmas shopping and what not. You’d never believe that we’re under a lockdown. No wonder the Covid-19 is not getting better and we’re setting new records every day. And with the upcoming promise of a vaccine on the horizon, people seem to be taking advantage of that news and disobeying the medical authorities even more. 

One more thing, don’t think that a vaccine is going to solve our problems nuh. I tend to believe it’s going to cause even more problems, what with all the negative info that’s floating around about it being Satan’s way of marking and controlling us, and the hordes of people who already are refusing to take it! It’s going to be a big bam-bam! And those who take it will rail against those who haven’t, and vice-versa, with all kinds of name calling and possible violence involved. 

But friends, please, let’s recall these momentous words of the pagan king Darius to Daniel when he threw him in the lion’s den. ‘Thy God whom thou servest continually, he will deliver thee.’ (Dan. 6:16b) Ah friends, if a pagan king could be so encouraging under those dire circumstances, why can’t we be likewise encouraging to each other eh, and faithfully keep serving the Lord God Jehovah eh? 

We know, or at least ought to know of His might, majesty, and power! Notwithstanding His most generous and compassionate grace and mercy to those who LOVE and faithfully serve Him. So why are we in such a negative state, if we claim to know that ‘all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them who are called according to his purpose?’ (Rom. 8:28) 

It’s all about testing us and maturing our faith my people. Just like He tested Israel’s faith and wanting to mature them when they left Egypt by leading them the long way around, instead of the eleven-day journey it would normally take through the Philistine land: ‘for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent (change their minds) when they see war, and they return to Egypt.’ (Ex. 13:17) 

And we see how they behaved so disobediently in the wilderness despite all of God’s goodness, because they were by nature a stubborn, stiff-necked, hard-ears people. That’s why it took them forty long years to reach the Promised Land. The Lord just led them round in circles until all those who had come out of Egypt had died, except Caleb and Joshua. How many times did they threaten Moses to go back to Egypt eh, in spite of the harsh life of slavery they had lived there? 

Oh friends, the Lord has given us such a wonderful life nowadays, why aren’t we thankful and obedient to Him eh? Why can’t we say faithfully, and sincerely claim like Bruh David did eh? ‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.’ (Ps. 27:13) 

Yes mih people, life is so good when yuh worshipping and praising the Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! So why the great disobedience, the turning away in droves, the mocking and blasphemy and lack of LOVE amongst us eh? Why the rampant evil, resentment, greed, and godlessness in our society eh? Why are we allowing the prince of darkness to cover our eyes so that we cannot see the light that radiates the goodness and LOVING-kindness of the Lord our God in the earth eh? 

Why are we worshipping so many different idols and gods who have absolutely no power eh, who are dead like doorknobs, and refuse to worship the One and ONLY living God Jehovah eh? I recently saw a commentary where the commentator says that we have turned away from God, and being the gentleman He is, He has stepped back and allowed us to be ruled by Satan, as we so greatly seem to desire, and what we are now witnessing and experiencing is simply the evil one’s authority and hegemony over our world. 

And if that’s true, then I don’t like it one bit, and you shouldn’t either! But either way my brethren, we ought to know that our God won’t leave nor forsake us, for He’s so promised, and He’s faithful to keep ALL of His promises. So for those of us who consider ourselves true believers in Christ Jesus, then we need to stand up strong and steadfast and adamantly resist the devil and his evil ministrations. 

We ought to be mature enough in our faith to know that whatever is happening in our world right now is not the end, for God is still in control despite how it looks, and He’s promised us victory through Christ Jesus. That means we have to put on His spiritual armour and with prayer and thanksgiving, fight the good fight, show the world that we are indeed mighty conquerors through Christ who died for us, that we are the head and not the tail, and we know for certain that the Lord will provide all our needs according to his riches in glory by our Lord and Saviour. 

That’s why these words of Peter ring so true in these turbulent and troubled times: ‘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. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. 

Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (being experienced by) your brethren that are in the world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet. 5:6-11) That’s the basic answer to this life my brethren. 

So now, for those of us who are sincerely trying to live it, let’s go home declaring (ah Lord eh!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are. In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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!’ 

So let’s go and do just that nuh! Much LOVE!

…life is all about LOVE…through Christ Jesus… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 January 2020 1 Peter 5:8.

1 Peter 5:8.    ​Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
 
And then it was Friday…and there was lots of shouting and jumping for joy! Hn! More of us were happy to see Friday, and the end of the work week, than to celebrate being alive and kicking in God’s great universe and being a BELOVED and saved child of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords! 

Now what’s wrong with that picture eh? Does it mean we’re putting the world before God? Maybe! And if so, then it’s a very unwise move, because when we celebrate God, with His awesome help, we are able to handle whatever the world throws at us. But following the dictates of the world, only makes life harder, for there is no help but our own, and we all know that there isn’t a lot we can do on our own. 

Remember, Jesus said that we ought to seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and then all the worldly things will be added to us, we won’t have to sweat and strain and break our backs to acquire them, because the Father knows we need them. (Matt. 6:32-33) So please, let’s check out our lives today nuh, and see what’s our priority; God’s kingdom and His righteousness, or the things of the world, because it’s ever so important to get our priorities right! 

And as you’d expect, the ordinary workingman is hovering in the background, eagerly and expectantly waiting to sing his song, so let’s bring him on stage nuh. (smile) And as always, he crows: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! And the chains of the slave master will be unshackled for a couple of days! 

Wow! What freedom! And yuh better believe I’m going to use that freedom to the hilt; do whatever I want, whenever I want…providing the other snake in the grass, the weather allows me to! Chuh! The weather’s been so contrary these days that you can’t make any serious plans, because it changes from one minute to the next! And yet they tell me that climate change ain’t real! Pure heifer dust yes! But if I can’t go out and do whatever I want to, then I’ll certainly do it in mih own yard, where I’m king of the castle…

Hn, hn, hn! King of which castle eh? When the wife and children protest my behaviour, then I have to modify it. So even in mih own yard, ah not really the boss nuh! But what yuh going to do eh? Nothing but grin and bear it, because nobody ever send or call me to have wife and children, is I with mih fresh self, went and look for them, so now I have to put up with whatever they bring. 

Now don’t get me wrong, I LOVE them dearly, and wouldn’t want to be without them, but yuh know, sometimes…sometimes they just cramp yuh style! (smile) And the truth of the matter is that I’m still ever so thankful for Fridays and weekends, regardless of the drawbacks!’ 

Ah friends, yuh see even when God is not your first priority, you still have barriers and boundaries to your behaviour. And as a serious and practicing child of God, we have more boundaries than most since we don’t want the enemy to compromise our lives and our living for Jesus. Consequently, our Friday Chant is somewhat different to the ordinary workingman’s song. So let’s chant it now nuh, in full voice with sincere hearts – yes our hearts must always be right when we come to the Father, otherwise He won’t acknowledge us. 

As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen!’ 

Now, though we have some boundaries as believers, it doesn’t mean we have to be constantly looking over our shoulder for the devil and his evil cohorts, but we do have to be careful that we don’t go too far out on the thin limbs of life. That’s why we have to constantly remember these poignant words of Peter. ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:’ 

And that’s the gospel truth friends, the enemy is always on the prowl, always looking for some way to compromise us. And not because he’s a toothless lion with more bark than bite (smile) since Jesus defeated him and now has the keys to hell death and the grave, he still can cause immense trouble in our lives if we give him the slightest opening. It’s up to us to keep our doors and windows and crevices closed so he can’t get in. 

And continuing with Peter’s advice: ‘Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (being experienced by) your brethren that are in your world.’ (1 Pet. 5:9). Oh, I know when the devil comes a calling, it doesn’t help all that much to know that other believers are suffering temptations too, but nonetheless, we must resist him through our faith in Jesus, because he’s a liar and cheat and deceiver and only wants to turn us away from God. 

Yuh see how smoothly and efficiently he made our forefathers Adam and Eve to eat of the forbidden fruit? He hasn’t changed, possibly gotten smarter and has more tools at his behest. So it’s of the utmost importance that we stand strong against him. And Peter ends with this assurance. ‘But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you.’ (1 Pet. 5:10) 

Ah friends, some temptation and affliction is necessary in the lives of all believers, because that’s how we get strong, how our faith grows. But be aware that the Lord will never give you more than you can bear, and with every temptation, He will either carry you through it, or make a way for you to go through it. That’s his ever faithful promise! So let’s stand strong and steadfast in the faith! Much LOVE!

…though Jesus rules…the devil still exists…with his evil ways…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 May 2017 1 Peter 5:8.

1 Peter 5:8.    Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.

Awright mih breddren, it’s Monday morning, so let’s be up and at ‘em nuh! 

‘Not today,’ claim our U.S. breddren. ‘Today is our Memorial Day Holiday, where we celebrate our fallen war heroes, so no work for us today. Praise the Lord!’ 

Yes friends, the shoe is on the other foot this week; last week we in Canada had Monday off for our Victoria Day Holiday, this week the U.S honours their patriots. But since it’s still a day of labour for most of us, we still need to sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn to get us going. So with as much verve and enthusiasm as we can muster, let’s sing. 

‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

And as expected, the loudest and most off key voices were those who did not have to go to work today, and were already into the celebrations. But just remember, please listen to Granny’s advice. ‘Drunk or sober mind yuh business.’ We don’t want to go giving the evil one any foothold in our souls, for he is always lurking around, always on the prowl to find someone he can invade and cultivate. 

That’s why Peter, after telling us to humble ourselves before God, and to cast our care on him, because He cares for us, so strenuously warns in our Bit. ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.’ 

And that’s the gospel truth friends!  Remember when Satan came before God in Job? ‘And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.’ (Job 1:7) 

And the scholars offer this explanation: ‘1:7. From going to and from in the earth refers to Satan’s activity. Though he does not admit it here, Satan’s character clearly shows that his many travels are for evil purposes.  In 1 Peter 5:8. Satan is described as “your adversary the devil…seeking whom he may devour.” 

The activity of Satan indicates that he only has limited access to God. This account in Job emphasizes that God is sovereign over Satan. It also teaches that Satan is a finite being and therefore not omnipresent (can’t be everywhere at the same time). Nor can he touch God’s servants without God’s permission.’ 

Oh glory to God my people! That means Satan has no direct say over us, he can only invade our souls and spirits if God gives him permission, or of we foolishly allow him to enter therein. That’s why Peter continues after our Bit. ‘Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world.’ (1 Pet.5:9) 

Oh friends, I know it’s no great consolation to know that our brethren are experiencing the same temptation as us, but it just goes to show that we are not alone in being tempted, as Bruh Paul tells the Corinthians. ‘There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.’ (1 Cor.10:13) 

Now friends, we have to be careful and understand that God will not always make us escape the temptation, but will often allow us to go through it, to build our faith, but will eventually bring us out safely on the other side. Remember too, that even Jesus was tempted by Lucifer during His earthly sojourn, but He successfully rebuked Him, and we ought to try and do likewise. 

James also warns us. ‘Submit yourselves therefore to God: Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.’ (James 4:7) Yes my fellow believers, if we keep resisting Lucifer, he will eventually flee from us; not that he won’t come back and try to tempt us later on, (smile) because he can be very persistent. 

However, we’ll end with these reassuring words of Peter. ‘But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you. To him be the glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet.5:10-11)

What a blessed and faithful assurance my people. So let’s go out today strengthened in the Word of God, so that we can do His will. Much LOVE!

…the stronger our faith in Jesus…the more we are able to resist temptation…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 February 2016 1 Peter 5:8‏‏‏‏‏‏

1 Peter 5:8.   Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.

Oh friends, on this Carnival Friday, a wet and windy one, I come to you from my little cottage by the sea in Tobago with these words of encouragement and LOVE! Glory to God!

Yes my brethren, it’s the start of the weekend, and I know that many of you around the world are going to, or have already shouted ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday, and the weekend’s here at last! No more backbreaking labour for a few days! Thank God it’s Friday yes!’

And so it should be my people; constant work deserves a spell of rest and rejuvenation. But the first thing I want to remind us about is how we spend our weekend, not in debauchery and lustfulness, but in thanks and praise and general well-being.

So let’s chant our Friday Chant which helps us to truly understand what the weekend is all about. As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through.

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’

Yes friends, that’s the general scene we ought to hold to on a weekend, especially this Carnival one, where in places like T&T, Rio and New Orleans, where the god of pleasure and debauchery, Bacchanal himself will be ruling the roost and so many of us will be behaving like true leggo beasts.

I don’t know about the other festivals, but here in T&T many people won’t be working from today until Ash Wednesday, so that’s a five-day weekend. And you know what can happen in such a long layoff from work, especially when pleasure is the subject of the day.

At no other time is Granny’s advice more necessary than now my people. So let me spell it out right away. ‘Sonny boy…and young girl too…please, please, ah beg all yuh…this is Carnival time, so drunk or sober, please mind yuh business! For as Shadow says in his kaiso; ‘on Carnival night…when them men get tight…they doh care who they bite…’

And that’s the gospel truth my people! At Carnival time even the most peaceful and ‘geekish’ body seems to develop a penchant for doing wrong, whether it’s through drugs and alcohol, or simply the enervating spirit of Carnival.

Oh I know this is the time before the Lenten Season when we are supposed to release all our pent up energy and frustrations before settling down to a more holy and godly time. But there is a way to do that, and also a way not to do it.

And our Bit today from 1 Peter gives us admirable, wonderful advice, advice truly akin to Granny’s.  Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.

And the sad part is that at this particular time of feasting and merriment, the ole crook and scoundrel Lucifer doesn’t have to look far or wide, or even search hard for people to devour, because we open wide the doorway for him to come in and take up residence within our souls, with the kind of behaviour we put down during Carnival.

Now nobody’s saying we shouldn’t celebrate or party, but we ought to do it with a modicum of circumspection, as Jeeves would say. We can’t afford to give the evil one, even an inch, because you know he’ll end up taking a nail. (smile)

As for me, my days for the leggo beast kind of partying seem to be over. Hn! I can’t even walk properly, much less to jump and prance! The last couple days my left knee began acting up on me, and I’ve been limping around, just doing whatever I need to do, plus the duchess had a bout of the flu, so we’ve just been sitting around mostly, trying to get ourselves together.

I have been going to my waterhole every afternoon though. Got to get the ole arthritic bones soaking in that therapeutic sea water as much as possible. I don’t need to worry about the sunshine, because it’s been very hot the last few days, I might even have gotten sunburn. (smile)

This morning though I want to go up into the big city of Scarborough and try to get some proper channels on the t.v. Hn! Now that I have satellite t.v, the channels don’t appeal to me. Not even a good sports station, or a Christian one to boost my spirituality! Chuh! It might cost me more money, but what’s a few dollars for one’s comfort and satisfaction eh!

I’ll be in quiet Tobago for the weekend, hopefully watching some of the mas on the tube. And if my knee feels better, I might even go down to Scarborough on Tuesday afternoon to take in some Tobago mas. Oh it’s not as big and fanciful and glamorous as that in Trinidad, but it will satisfy my soul.

And besides, the overall mas scene has gone downhill as far as I am concerned; the good costumes are few and far between, with just a bikini top and bottom with a few feathers being more the norm, but still costing a lot of money.

Anyway friends, let’s end up here with the continuation of Peter’s warning after our Bit. ‘Whom (the devil) resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world.

But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet.5:9-11)

And all God’s children said a loud and proud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord! Hallelujah!’

So my fellow believers in Christ, until tomorrow, the Lord in favour, please let’s walk safely and securely under His comforting umbrella, successfully thwarting the evil wiles of the enemy. Much LOVE!

…to successfully thwart Lucifer…one MUST walk with God…