I read my Bible to see what men ought to do; and read my newspapers to
see what men are doing.
Lord renew Thy Church beginning with me; Lord renew the church that
the church may renew the nation(s).
Because we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men.
1. The shock of hearing about the shooting death of six family
members, at one time, in one place, still lingered in my mind during
this week. In fact I don’t know when this image will ever leave my
mind. Perhaps we needed a national day of mourning, with the flags
flying at half mast to enable us to grieve properly. For, as in many
other instances, life ‘moves on’. In the same way that UK PM has
encouraged us to ‘move on’ from slavery. No! I cannot moved on. This
thing has been horrific and left an awful feeling deep in my soul. In
that sense, in a deeply spiritual way, hopefully some good will come
out of this evil, and help my country to regain its ‘lost soul’.
2. Yes, I watched, ( at least part of it and the inevitable ‘ talking
heads spinning) the first ‘debate’ between the contending Democratic
candidates, otherwise known as ” The Hillary Clinton Show”.
3. Yes, I’ve been following the events in Syria, in Israel, and now
this ‘killer typhoon’ in the Philippines. And more people have since
died by the gun in Jamaica.
4. But O my God ‘six at one time’ is just too much to bear. Maybe we
need another Hero in Jamaica. Like Nanny, or Sam Sharpe or Paul Bogle!
THE WORD OF GOD
In the midst of this deep searching, the angst, and the pathos of the
moment, the Lord reminds us that we in fact have a Hero. More than a
Hero in fact! A God who will ‘take care of us’. And has done so! By
defeating the forces of evil, against whom we ultimately contend, as a
nation and as a world, on the Cross of Calvary. That is the Theme
which runs throughout the messages sent out on WhatsApp to people like
me, searching for an answer to this madness.
THE FIRST MESSAGE – THAT GOD NEVER FORSAKES HIS PEOPLE. NEVER!
HOPE AT MIDNIGHT
Received and sent tonight as I have an early morning meeting. Praise
This note is a message of hope for those of us who care deeply. Who
have been crying out to God for mercy for #Jamaicalandwelove. Who have
felt the weight of ‘midnight’ on our souls as we suffered through
last week. And contemplate the weeks and months ahead! As we pray for
the families involved and the Communities near to them. Regardless of
whatever may turn out to be reason for their deaths!
I wish you could have been in my church this morning, as a young
pastor, drawing from the words of the Prophet Amos, ‘ Do not seek
evil, but seek good’, beseeched the nation to turn back to God. To
repent of our worship of idols, and to seek God in Christ. Or face
more Judgement! But assured us that God would not abandon us, if we
but accept the Atonement for our sins wrought on Calvary by Jesus.
Which is the same message shared centuries ago by arguably the most
crucial figure in modern church history – Martin Luther. The great
Reformer. And to which meditation I was led tonight, as I listened to
the haunting music of Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir’s ‘ Order my steps in
your Word’. This, as I sent out the Sunday night email message
entitled: Midnight in Jamaica: In times like these we need a Saviour.
Which is also published on WordPress
Amazingly this morning, I spent some time in particular with the
second sentence, of my early morning prayers by Jacob Boheme.
Rule over me this day, O God, leading me on the path of
righteousness. Put your Word in my mind and your truth in my heart,
that this day I neither think nor feel anything except what is good
GOD NEVER FORGETS US
Martin Luther ( 1483-1546)
Verse: Deuteronomy 7:18
..do not be afraid of them . Just remember
what the Lord God did to Pharoah and to all Egypt.
When God….. delivered the children of Israel out of the long,
wearisome, and heavy captivity in Egypt, and led them into the land
of promise, he called Moses, to whom afterwards he gave his brother
Aaron as an assistant. And though Pharaoh at first set himself hard
against them, and plagued the people more than before, yet he was
forced in the end to let Israel go. And when he hunted after them with
all his host, the Lord drowned Pharaoh with all his power in the Red
Again in the time of Eli the priest, when matters stood very evil in
Israel, the Philistines pressing hard upon them, and taking away the
Ark of God into their land, and when Eli, in great sorrow of heart,
fell backwards from his chair and broke his neck, and it seemed as if
Israel were utterly undone. God raised up Samuel the prophet, and
through him restored Israel, and the Philistines were overthrown……
Hence we may see that God never forsakes his people, nor even the
wicked; though, by reason of their sins, he suffer them a long time
to be severely punished and plagued as also, in this time, he has
graciously delivered us…… God of his mercy grant that we may
thankfully acknowledge this.
There were more examples of God’s faithfulness to his people. But the
edited version above is sufficient for us to know the truth. That God
is indeed merciful! I must tell you that as I read this message of
hope a wave of joy, almost to the point of tears enveloped my soul.
For our God is indeed a Supernatural and a Faithful God.
And as we ponder the words of the writer of the Book of Hebrews, we
get a clear understanding of God’s ultimate manifestation of His
faithfulness to all mankind.
” Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the
Prophets, but in these last days he had spoken to us by a Son, whom
he appointed heir of all things. “. Hebrews 1:1-2. NRSV.
And then the writer continued with these fateful words which I hope we
will all heed. Regardless of where we are in our journey with Christ.
Baptised or not baptised. Faithful or disobedient. Full of courage or
” Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the
rebellion.” Hebrews 3:15
For this is precisely what the young pastor was warning about this
morning. For the children of Israel were punished severely, and many
perished on account of disobedience.
And so too will Jamaica suffer if we continue on our wicked ways of
murder and corruption and denying the poor Justice. But God will
always be there calling a nation back to Himself in Christ Jesus –
softly and tenderly Jesus is calling. Calling for you and for me. Come
home, all ye who are weary. Come home.
I pray God that will all become weary of living in a country of
#QuadrupleMurder and turn back to God in and through Christ Jesus. The
only mediator between God and man. Peace.
THE SECOND MESSAGE – THAT WE REALLY HAVE TO LOVE ONE ANOTHER. DEEPLY!
LIKE JESUS DID. IF WE WISH TO SEE THE DAWN OF A NEW DAY IN OUR
THE GREATEST OF THESE IS LOVE
I met a Pastor yesterday who also sings well. We got talking about
Amazing Grace. And that one of the great challenges that we face as
Evangelists, is to convince ‘ good’ people that they are ‘ wretches’
before a Holy God. Then this morning the Lord reminded me how He
rescued me from the pit and placed ‘ a new song’ in my heart’
(Psalm 40) after, what I considered to be, the darkest period in my
What song came to mind? A verse from ‘ Hark my Soul, it is The Lord’:
I delivered thee when bound,
and when bleeding, healed thy wounds;
sought the wandering, set the right, turned thy darkness into light.
But as I reflected on the entire hymn, in the context of ‘ Amazing
Grace that saved a wretch like me’, I was reminded, that the darkest
hour of anyone’s life, is to be held captive to Sin. And thus the
words of the final verse, a prayer for grace to love this wonderful
God, who in Christ Jesus, while ‘ we were still sinners’, rescued me
with His precious Blood, ministered to my soul:
‘ Lord it is my chief complaint
that my love is weak and faint;
love thee, and adore; O for grace to love thee more’.
And the Old Testament reading for my church this Sunday, describes
the Rescue Mission, this ‘ Unchanging Love ( verse 4), in very
” But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our
iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by
his wounds we are healed’. Isaiah 53:4 O Jesus lover of my soul.
All this then provided a proper understanding of one of the most
important passages in Holy Scripture. And where I have arrived in my
bedtime reading! 1 Cor. 13. A chapter usually read at weddings, which
speaks about one kind of love: but which explains so much about the
very heart of the God, ‘ who so loved the world, that he sent his only
begotten Son. To suffer and die! For the sins of all mankind. So that
we may not perish.
Therefore if God sent His Son, in love, we who follow Christ are also
sent in love, to spread, and to be, the Good News, that Jesus Saves.
So we must love: the wicked and the ungrateful, the scammers and the
gunmen; the prostitutes and the corrupt politicians; the police who
take a bribe to deny the poor Justice and to ‘ line their pockets’
and provide ‘ escort service for the druggists’; the teenage mothers
and teenage fathers; the unruly schoolers in the bus parks across the
island; the dance hall singers who sing ‘ underclothes songs’; the
pastors who prey on the sisters in church – to name but a few of those
whom Jesus loves, and for whom, along with all who have sinned,
everyone of us, suffered and died.
Love must really be Kind. Must be Patient and await upon a faithful
God to act and to dispense Justice as He sees fit. Love really must
not be easily angered and seek destruction for the ‘ wicked’ or those
who constantly provoke or even persecute us. Love cannot boast that we
are good Christians living in an evil society ‘ ripe for Judgement’ .
For Love always hope and perseveres that ‘ out of evil God can, and
will bring forth good’.
There really is no point in sending out WhatsApp messages every
morning, or on a weekend, if we do not love as Christ did. There is no
point in aspiring to, or providing leadership in this country, if we
do not love like Jesus did. And for God sake, there is no point in
being a Pastor or a Shepherd of the Flock, unless you love like Jesus
did. Sacrificially and unconditionally! Those who live in
#WrongAddresses: those ‘ living in sin’; and those captured by Satan
and locked up in Prison. For leaders will come and go, so too those
with a ‘ Prophetic Word’ and with a strong Faith, but in the end
Love will always remain. For He who died on the Cross, first Loved.
And so must we, who follow Him, if #Jamaicalandwelove is to be
rescued from the madness and see ‘ the dawn’ of peace once again. A
peace wrought by the ‘ wounds of a suffering Christ’.
O for grace to love Christ more, and those for whom He died. Peace.
THE THIRD MESSAGE – THAT OUR GOD IS AN AWESOME GOD. AND THEREFORE VERY
ABLE TO ‘MOVE MOUNTAINS’.
GM: OUR GOD IS AN AWESOME GOD.
Part one. Part two, as I was led to read Malachi this morning, having
been inspired to write last night, will be more challenging, as this
Awesome God poses some serious questions to His people. And offers
another perspective in the words of a beautiful hymn, ‘ My God how
wonderful thou art’. But more of that anon. And back to today’s
In the aftermath of the horrific events which unfolded in Jamaica
last week, things look pretty bleak indeed for our homeland. As it
does for the Syrian people living in a war zone, and hence the recent
Exodus of thousands to Europe and North America. So too does the
future looks grave for millions of people living in poverty in some
areas on the African continent. Thus the willingness to face the life
threatening, and often deadly trip across the Mediterranean Sea
seeking a ‘ better life ‘ in Europe.
Since I was led to share with you the meditation from Martin Luther
about the historical reality, that God does not forsake or abandon
His people, as inspired by Deuteronomy 7:18, I’ve been deeply
immersed in that chapter. And the others that follow. In this extended
reading, a quote from a Saint of yure that: The primary declaration of
Christianity is not ” this do ” but “this happened” - Evelyn
resonated well with me, as I arrived at the following conclusion
having delved into the Scriptures.
That the essence of the Judeo-Christian Religion, is that two major
events happened in our journey with God, and both, one the precursor
to the other, changed our lives, and our understanding of Who God Is,
1. God’s Rescue of the Children of Israel, with an ‘ outstretched arms
‘ from the bondage of slavery in Egypt.
2. God’s rescue of the entire human race on the Cross of Calvary,
with an ‘ outstretched arm, ‘ from our bondage to Sin and Death.
For, repeatedly, in both the Old and New Testament narratives, the
dramatic story of the plagues and the parting of the Red Sea, to the
Glory of God, is told. And the ‘ called out’ people of God, reminded
never to forget! This is the main point made by Moses in Deuteronomy
7, when the previously enslaved people were about to enter the
promised land and became afraid of ‘ the strong nations’.
So God, through Moses told them:
‘ Do not be afraid of them; remember well what the Lord did to Pharoah
and all Egypt. You saw with your own eyes the great trials, the
miraculous signs and wonders, the mighty hand and outstretched arms,
with which the Lord brought you out……Do not be terrified by them,
for the Lord your God who is among you is a great and awesome God’.
Deut. 7: 18-21 NIV.
Then this morning I read the New Testament reading appointed for
Sunday in my church and spent some time on two particular sections –
one in the reading and the other right after – prayerfully. And
pondered on the collective power deeply!
‘ Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into
heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we
profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize
with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every
way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s
throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find
grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:14-16
During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and
petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him
from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. Son
though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once
made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who
obey him 5:7-10
For, repeatedly, in the New Testament, we are reminded never to
forget that the same God of the Children of Israel, in Christ Jesus,
with an ‘ outstretched arm’ , rescued us from Sin and Death unto
Everlasting Life. Thus St. Paul declared that he would preach only
Christ and Him Crucified. For in that act of Atonement, the
Christian derives all power to spread the Gospel in Word and in deed,
the Good News, that Jesus Saves.
So my friends, what of Scammers and vicious gunmen who would terrorize
us and cause us to fear, as if our God is not an Awesome God! What of
the attacks of the forces of evil on our family, our marriage, our
health, our finances our emotions, as if our God is not an Awesome
God! What of the temptation to fret and worry and become anxious
about the economic state of our nation, the nature of our politics,
the level of wantonness and immorality among schoolers and adults
alike, and the social ills of our time – poor living conditions, as if
our God is not an Awesome God!
As the present ‘ called out ‘ people of God, the Church, we need to
remind ourselves, and others, constantly, that the God we serve, is
the same God who, with Power, rescued His people in Egypt. And with
even greater Power, rescued the world from bondage to Satan. And thus
we can approach with confidence, this same God in heaven, and offer
up prayers, with loud cries and tears, seeking Mercy in this time of
Mercy for those held captive to the Sin of greed and the love of
money. Mercy for those held captive by the lust for sex, power and
the benefits of corruption. Mercy for those held captive by hate,
injustice and disrespect and disregard for the Poor, the Vulnerable
and the Stranger. And Mercy for all our sins – what we have done and
For we Jamaicans were once enslaved, and just like the Jews in Egypt,
we too were rescued by God with an ‘ outstretched arm’. And we too
were taught by Sam Sharpe and others, about God’s mighty Rescue Act
on Calvary. And hence the peaceful, loving, humble God-fearing
nature of a previous era of Jamaican life. A time of Christian
charity, Christian homes, schools, communities and manners.
So let us not be afraid of the ‘ strongman’, the wickedness, the
immorality and the outrageous behaviour of our people. For Jesus is
the same Yesterday, Today and Forevermore. As the same Awesome God who
told His people not to be afraid, is the same Awesome God who is with
us now helping us to wage war against murder, crime, injustice and
immorality, in our community. And the many temptations and trials
which beset us personally.
Let us then persevere, and not ‘ throw up our hands’ in despair. But
rather, approach the ‘ throne of grace’, with the confidence, that
we serve an Awesome God. O Jesus, we need thee, every hour we need. O
Bless us our Saviour as we come to thee. For Mercy.
And if you don’t believe, just maybe this video by Charles Jenkins
might help you to know the One who ‘ hides us from the rain’ and ‘
keeps us safe in the valley. A Provider and a Deliverer. Christ the
Son of the Living God.
‘ For no matter how many promises God has made, they are ‘ Yes’ in
Christ. And so through him the ‘ Amen’ is spoken by us to the glory of
God’ 2. Cor. 1:20 NIV
THE FINAL MESSSAGE – THAT GOD TAKES OF US SO THAT WE MAY SERVE OTHERS
GOD WILL TAKE CARE OF YOU ; SO THAT YOU MAY SERVE OTHERS
I did not plan to write this morning. But what else can you do, but
share, when the Lord leads you to open your hymnbook, searching for
one hymn, and another glorious one, full promises ‘ presents itself’.
For we serve, in the midst of our many and varied personal trials, a
God who promises not to forsake or abandon us. In small things, and in
big things! Regardless! He will take care of us. I can give a personal
testimony who God has taken care of me in a major and possibly life
threatening incident, and in a small but significant matter in the
past few days. Praise God. And the hymn writer captures the essence
of his promises.
So whatever danger, or stressful situation, or personal trial you are
going through, allow the words of this hymn to minister to you. But
remember also the revelation from the Gospel reading in Mark appointed
for my church on Sunday. That just as the Son of Man, Jesus Christ
came not to be served, but to serve and give His life as a ransom for
many, we who follow Him, are called to a life of service to others.
Mark 10:45. So God takes care of us so that we may take care of
others, on His behalf. And the greatest example of that principle is
found in 2. Cor. 5:17-20.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old
has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to
himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation:
that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting
people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of
reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God
were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf:
Be reconciled to God.
And therefore, let us remember, as we receive this assurance from God,
to cry out day and night, with tears and loud cries to God ; for
others who are distressed for one reason or another; those who are
denied Justice at the workplace or in the Courts; for those held
captive by Satan to unrighteousness and immoral behaviour, to anger
and bitterness, to greed and pride; for communities literally ‘
under the gun’; and for our blessed nation which, in large part –
thank God for the remnant which has remained faithful – has turned
away from the Lord, and therefore suffering so much. But most of all
for those who we meet and who have not yet committed their lives to
Christ and sought to have a personal relationship with the Incarnate
God of all Creation. Peace.
1. Be not dismayed whate’er betide,
God will take care of you;
beneath his wings of love abide, God will take care of you.
Refrain: God will take care of you, through every day, o’er all the
way; he will take care of you, God will take care of you.
2. Through days of toil when heart doth fail,
God will take care of
you; when dangers fierce your path assail, God will take care of
3. All you may need he will provide,
God will take care of you;
nothing you ask will be denied, God will take care of you. (Refrain)
4. No matter what may be the test, God will take care of you; lean,
weary one, upon his breast, God will take care of you. (Refrain)