Saturday, December 28, 2013

Mexican Hitchhiker


Mexican Hitchhiker, 1988 ©

by

Matthew A. Nelson
                                                                                      
July, 1996

“You need to take the Bronco and go someplace. I don’t want you sitting around for three days saying, ‘Gee, I wish I had gone somewhere’.” After almost sixteen years of marriage, Karoline recognized the restlessness in my soul hated staying home on three-day weekends. The Memorial Day weekend was approaching. Why not go visit my friend Dave Honea and his wife Jean in Austin? “Matt, we are going to Nuevo Laredo. Why don’t you join us for dinner on Saturday at 7 PM at the Cadillac Bar and Grill?”

            Sounded good to me. With a couple of oranges, some graham crackers, some drinking water, beef jerky, I headed West in my nine-month old Bronco. The Houston area is too humid, too coastal, too much of East Texas. My Western heritage needed to be revitalized. Wide open spaces. Mesquite trees (or bushes). No cars for miles, on a two-lane highway. Laredo is about six hours from my house. I found a place to park the Bronco, and walked across the International Bridge, because I didn’t feel comfortable about driving into Mexico.

            Old women and dirty children and crippled men and others tugged at the heartstrings with their begging on the bridge street. I always have mixed emotions about beggars. I know that I am better off, but I wonder how many of them use the heartstrings to make a substantial living. If you give one coin, then all of a sudden you are the Pied Piper. I feel guilty when I don’t give, but I sometimes feel conned when I do. I wandered the streets of Nuevo Laredo for an hour before going to the Cadillac Bar and Grill. It is a few blocks away from the bridge, so the beggars had thinned, and I was long forgotten as the vendors of leather goods, cheap booze and cigarettes, and black velvet paintings were hustling the latest people who had just walked over the bridge.

            I met Dave on my first trip to the South Pole. We have shared meals at the galleys of the South Pole and McMurdo, Antarctica, at the Auckland, New Zealand airport, in Austin, and with this meal, in Mexico. His wife is an expert on Arctic archeology. They have Wintered-over in McMurdo, and have spent a few years in Alaska. Dave has travelled to Mexico several times to explore caves. He sent me a photograph himself on a salmon fishing trip in Alaska that could be on the cover of Field and Stream. After our meal, we listened to a Mexican Band in a park, watching young men trying to impress their girlfriends. I left Dave and Jean there about 9 PM, walked across the Bridge back to the Bronco, thinking about where to go for the next two days.

            As I recall, I headed West, but without a particular destination in mind. I drove for about three hours, until I found some cheap motel to spend the night. I almost slept in the Bronco. It wouldn’t be the first, nor will it be the last time, but when I do sleep overnight in a vehicle, I always wake up feeling grungy, and hate my own smell the rest of the day. So, I tend to find cheap motels where I can take a shower. Of course, there have been some motels that I would have been better off sleeping in the Bronco.

            Sunday at Noon, I tied the Bronco to the hitching post at Judge Roy Bean’s saloon in Langtry, half expecting the Hanging Judge to wander through with a bottle of whiskey in one hand and a hanging rope in the other, as he administered justice with his Law West of the Pecos. The Western artifacts looked like those in the Ft. Caspar, Wyoming museum. One six-shooter pretty much looks the same as another. Horseshoes don’t vary in shape. Imagination takes over. Forget the Made in Taiwan genuine whatever as the cash registers ring. Close your eyes. That’s where the Judge sat. Maybe his ghost is living its eternity in West Texas with the souls of the men he hung just a few miles West of the Pecos. 

            Time to hit the trail. Buy some liquid hay for the Bronco, enough to keep it going for another five hundred miles. Ought to make Big Bend by early evening. No sleeping bags nor camping equipment, just some oranges and graham crackers and beef jerky and some water. Who knows? Maybe tonight the Bronco will be my campground, but that’s several hours away. I won’t have many hours to spend in Big Bend, but at least will have an idea what it looks like, and I always can come back later when I have more time. Eight years later, as I write this, guess I just haven’t found the time. Big Bend is still on my Gonna List.

            In West Texas, one can drive for miles without seeing anyone. I might have been out of radio range, or just wanted to serenade my horse, my faithful Bronco. Sometimes, when I am driving alone, I sing. Nobody criticizes my voice nor tells me about buckets nor tells me I don’t have the words right. I guess when I say I sing, I am using the wrong choice of words. Beller is a better choice of words. Sometimes I beller the same words and the same tune over and over. Sometimes I make up words. I am not sure that I have the correct spelling of beller, but I like the way it looks on the computer machine, so I am going to leave it that way. In West Texas, nobody cares how you spell beller. You can beller and nobody complains. You can almost drive as fast as you want if you don’t have somebody indicating to you that it would have been to your financial advantage to have slowed down before he caught you with the radar gun that operates at the speed of light. When one is bellerin’ at ninety miles an hour on an empty and lonely stretch of West Texas highway, one doesn’t expect to see a hitchhiker sneak out of the mesquite trees and wave him down. So I put the Bronco in Whoa gear, stopped the bellerin’, and decided to give the man a ride who has forever influenced my attitude of picking up hitchhikers.

            The two piles of grass and alfalfa that fell out of his shoes indicated he had been sleeping in other places than Broncos or in cheap motels. My keen sense of smell detected other signs that cheap motels with working showers were out of his price range. His tour package of West Texas is not printed in the brochures found in travel offices; had it been printed, it would have said, “Meals not included”. When I asked him if he was hungry, he gave me one of his few smiles, and it was adios for most of the oranges and crackers.

            We spoke very few words. I tried to converse with him, but he spoke very little English. He was a Mexican, heading back to Mexico. That in itself is unusual, because in that part of Texas, that close to the Border, the Mexicans are travelling North. During the course of the day, I did learn that he had three children, and it had been eight months since he had seen them. As we drove along, he opened up one of those envelopes banks give out from drive-up windows that I had on the front seat, and gave a look of disgust upon finding it empty. His clothes were the typical white pullover shirt and baggy pants that Mexicans are often stereotyped as wearing. Only he wasn’t the typical Mexican just trying to make a living to feed his family.

            I have the impression that he had just been released, or had just escaped from jail. His dark eyes were cold, hard, suspicious. The tattoos on his arms and hands were homemade. On his right inside forearm a two-inch beetle had eight legs. Across the top of his right hand was a name that I couldn’t read. In the soft area of skin between his left thumb and index finger was an upside-down cross, with two dots on either side of the crossbar. If the cross had been right side up, the dots would have been above the crossbar. We were about two hundred miles from Big Ben, the only people on the highway. When I saw the upside-down cross, I had cold shivers, but I didn’t know why.

            We drove in silence. My few attempts at conversation were met with hostile resistance. I didn’t know where to leave him. Along the way, I saw some signs for some colorful rocks, or a waterfall. I don’t remember what it was. I turned in there, because I thought other people might be there. It was deserted. I took a couple of photographs of something, while he waited in the Bronco. I made a futile attempt to conceal my anguish. In hindsight, he probably would have asked me to stop and let him out if I had started bellering again. At that point I was concerned about my safety. But nothing happened. We drove to Big Bend without incident.

            He seemed agitated when I drove to the park headquarters. I paid five dollars for the entrance fee, while he waited outside. Since I planned on staying at Big Bend, I thought I would drop him off at Terlingua, the next town. But it was a desolate town, and I didn’t want to leave him in the middle of nowhere. The next town was Lajitas, which is a town right on the Rio Grande River. It is a small resort town. I knew the guy didn’t have any money, but I was hungry by that time, and figured he was too. As uncomfortable as I felt around him, I just couldn’t drop him off and then go and enjoy a good dinner. I asked him if he was hungry, and he said in broken English, “A little bit”. After three or four hours with this guy, I figured another half an hour wouldn’t make much difference.

            This was Memorial Day weekend, time for the RV crowd to visit Big Bend. The town has an old Western flavor, with only one restaurant. The hostess seated us in back, where we had to walk in front of the RV crowd. Everybody stared. In perfect English, he ordered a chicken-fried steak. I had fajitas in the town of Lajitas, which I thought sounded poetic. While we were waiting for the food to be served, he did something I shall never forget. He took a fork off the table and started combing his black bushy hair. He jerked the fork hard several times to untangle his matted hair. Everybody stared. Then very deliberately, he slithered the fork into his pants pocket. I made the most classic statement: “Put the fork back on the table. I will buy you a comb.” His eyes twisted into something dark and evil. “No.”  “Put the fork back.”  “No.” Shortly after that, the food came. We ate in silence.

            That really angered me. Earlier in the day, I had even thought of driving him further down the road. All of a sudden, that fork became a weapon. I could almost feel it in my ribs. We walked out to the cash register, where I wanted to pay a dollar extra for the fork, but he was right by my side. I fully expected to be arrested for being an accomplice to this guy stealing a fork. Once outside, I walked to the right side of the Bronco, grabbed the rest of the oranges and the crackers, and gave them to him. He said, again in very good English, “Where are you going?” I said, “I am going to Big Bend. I don’t care where you go.” He whined, “Look man, I don’t have no money.” So I gave him five or ten dollars. I just wanted to be rid of him.

            Once I left there, I kept on going. I did not stop at Big Bend. I kept checking my rear view mirror to see if some sheriff was going to arrest me for this guy stealing a fork. I drove to Alpine, passing through an Immigration checkpoint without any problems. But I just knew they had radioed ahead to the sheriff in Alpine. In Alpine, I found another cheap motel. The next day, I drove back home, without bellering, contemplating the previous day.

            At work the next day, I was laughing about it. Especially about him combing his hair with a fork. Israel Vinces, one of the guys I worked with, had been born in Mexico, and told me that I really didn’t want to know about his tattoos. When I convinced him to tell me, he said, “Matthew, there is a gang of people who go up and down the Mexican border who are devil worshippers. That is why they have the upside-down cross tattooed on their left hand. The two dots are snake eyes. They find innocent people, kill them, and mutilate their bodies. If you had driven him further, they may never have found your body. He probably all ready figured out where to sell your Bronco.”



            For a long time, the people at work teased me about this guy combing his hair with a fork. Nine months later, the local TV news told a story of a college kid on Spring Break whose mutilated body was found along the Mexican border, killed by devil worshippers who had upside-down crosses and two dots tattooed on their left hands. My blood ran cold. My Guardian Angel had protected me on Memorial Day weekend, from a man that I now realize had every intention of killing me.

The Only Time Someone Pulled a Knife on Me


[Matt Nelson picked me up hitchhiking in Montana a few months ago.  He emailed me some of his short stories for me to read.  My Sheep Hear My Voice ]

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Gatekeeper

White Washed or Washed White?

Jesus warning the Pharisees--white-washed walls


White Washed or Washed White?

_____


Shiloh
By Tim Shey

Brutal deathdance;
My eyes weep blood.
Pharisees smile like vipers,
They laugh and mock their venom:
Blind snakes leading
The deaf and dumb multitude.

Where are my friends?
The landscape is dry and desolate.
They have stretched my shredded body
On this humiliating tree.

The hands that healed
And the feet that brought good news
They have pierced
With their fierce hatred.

The man-made whip
That opened up my back
Preaches from a proper pulpit.
They sit in comfort:
That vacant-eyed congregation.
The respected, demon-possessed reverend
Forks his tongue
Scratching itchy ears
While Cain bludgeons
Abel into silence.

My flesh in tattered pieces
Clots red and cold and sticks
To the rough-hewn timber
That props up my limp, vertical carcase
Between heaven and earth.
My life drips and puddles
Below my feet,
As I gaze down dizzily
On merciless eyes and dagger teeth.

The chapter-and-versed wolves
Jeer and taunt me.
Their sheepwool clothing
Is stained black with the furious violence
Of their heart of stone.
They worship me in lip service,
But I confess,
I never knew them
(Though they are my creation).

My tongue tastes like ashes:
It sticks to the roof of my mouth.
I am so thirsty.
This famine is too much for me.
The bulls of Bashan have bled me white.
Papa, into your hands
I commend my Spirit.

Ethos
February/March 1997
Iowa State University

Genesis 49: 10: “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.”

Monday, November 4, 2013

The Death of Voltaire

Francois-Marie Arouet (Voltaire), 1694-1778

Voices from the Edge of Eternity
Compiled by John Myers

Last Hours On Earth Of The Noted French Infidel, Voltaire

Pages 21-22: 


"When Voltaire felt the stroke which he realized must terminate in death, he was overpowered with remorse.  He at once sent for the priest and wanted to be 'reconciled to the church.'  His infidel flatterers hastened to his chamber to prevent his incantation, but it was only to witness his ignominy and their own.  He cursed them to their faces and, since his distress was increased by their presence, repeatedly and loudly exclaimed, 'Begone!  It is you that have brought me to my present condition.  Leave me, I say -- begone!  What a wretched glory is this which you have produced for me!'

"Hoping to allay his anguish by a written recantation, he had it prepared, signed it, and saw it witnessed.  But it was all unavailing.  For two months he was tortured with such an agony as led him at times to gnash his teeth in impotent rage against God and man.  At other times, in plaintive accents, he would plead, 'O Christ!  O Lord Jesus!'  Then, turning his face he would cry out, 'I must die -- abandoned of God and of men!'

"As his end drew near his condition became so frightful that his infidel associates were afraid to approach his bedside.  Still they guarded the door, that others might not know how awfully an infidel was compelled to die.  Even his nurse repeatedly said that for all the wealth of Europe she would never see another infidel die.  It was a scene of horror that lies beyond all exaggeration.

"Such is the well-attested end of this man who had a natural sovereignty of intellect, excellent education, great wealth and much earthly honor."

     --The Contrast Between Infidelity and Christianity

Voltaire--Wikipedia

The Terror of Hell
The Death of President Lyndon Johnson
Watching Men Die

The Loneliness of the Christian




"The loneliness of the Christian results from his walk with God in an ungodly world, a walk that must often take him away from the fellowship of good Christians as well as from that of the unregenerate world. His God-given instincts cry out for companionship with others of his kind, others who can understand his longings, his aspirations, his absorption in the love of Christ; and because within his circle of friends there are so few who share his inner experiences he is forced to walk alone.

"The unsatisfied longings of the prophets for human understanding caused them to cry out in their complaint, and even our Lord Himself suffered in the same way.

"The man [or woman] who has passed on into the divine Presence in actual inner experience will not find many who understand him. He finds few who care to talk about that which is the supreme object of his interest, so he is often silent and preoccupied in the midst of noisy religious shoptalk. For this he earns the reputation of being dull and over-serious, so he is avoided and the gulf between him and society widens.

"He searches for friends upon whose garments he can detect the smell of myrrh and aloes and cassia out of the ivory palaces, and finding few or none he, like Mary of old, keeps these things in his heart.

"It is this very loneliness that throws him back upon God. His inability to find human companionship drives him to seek in God what he can find nowhere else."
--A.W. Tozer

The Loneliness of the Christian
I am a Stranger in the Earth
A.W. Tozer Quote

Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Wrath of the Great King of Kings



An excerpt from
"Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God"
By Jonathan Edwards:

And consider here more particularly several Things concerning that Wrath that you are in such Danger of.
    1.  Whose Wrath it is:  It is the Wrath of the infinite GOD.  If it were only the Wrath of Man, tho' it were of the most potent Prince, it would be comparatively little to be regarded.  The Wrath of Kings is very much dreaded, especially of absolute Monarchs, that have the Possessions and Lives of their Subjects wholly in their Power, to be disposed of at their meer Will.  Prov. 20. 2.  The Fear of a King is as the Roaring of a Lion:  whoso provoketh him to Anger, sinneth against his own Soul.  The Subject that very much enrages an arbitrary Prince, is liable to suffer the most extream Torments, that human Art can invent or human Power can inflict.  But the greatest earthly Potentates, in their greatest Majesty and Strength, and when cloathed in their greatest Terrors, are but feeble despicable Worms of the Dust, in Comparison of the great  and almighty Creator and King of Heaven and Earth:  It is but little that they can do, when most enraged, and when they have exerted the utmost of their Fury.  All the Kings of the Earth before GOD are as Grashoppers, they are nothing and less than nothing:  Both their Love and their Hatred is to be despised.  The Wrath of the great King of Kings is as much more terrible than their's, as his Majesty is greater.  Luke 12.  4,5.  And I say unto you my Friends, be not afraid of them that kill the Body, and after that have no more that they can do:  But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear; fear him, which after he hath killed, hath Power to cast into Hell; yea I say unto you, fear him.

Flee California!


Friday, September 6, 2013

Sarah Pierrepont (1723)

Sarah Edwards

Sarah Pierrepont (1723)
By Jonathan Edwards

"They say there is a young lady in [New Haven] who is beloved of that Great Being, who made and rules the world, and that there are certain seasons in which this Great Being, in some way or other invisible, comes to her and fills her mind with exceeding sweet delight; and that she hardly cares for any thing, except to meditate on him---that she expects after a while to be received up where he is, to be raised up out of the world and caught up into heaven; being assured that he loves her too well to let her remain at a distance from him always.  There she is to dwell with him, and to be ravished with love and delighted forever.  Therefore, if you present all the world before her, with the richest of its treasures, she disregards it and cares not for it, and is unmindful of any pain or affliction; is most just and conscientious in all her conduct; and you could not persuade her to do any thing wrong or sinful, if you would give her all the world, lest she should offend this Great Being.  She is of a wonderful sweetness, calmness, and universal benevolence of mind; especially after this Great God has manifested himself to her mind.  She will sometimes go about from place to place, singing sweetly; and seems to be always full of joy and pleasure; and no one knows for what.  She loves to be alone, walking in the fields and groves, and seems to have some one invisible always conversing with her."

Excerpt from Early American Writing
Edited by Giles Gunn

Jonathan Edwards


Sarah Pierrepont later became the wife of Jonathan Edwards in 1727.

Jonathan Edwards

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Martyred for Christ



Martyrs Mirror
The Story of Seventeen Centuries of Christian Martyrdom, From the Time of Christ to A.D. 1660

By Thieleman J. van Braght


Page 134:  FOUR GOD-FEARING WOMEN, NAMELY, TWO CALLED AMMONARIA, AND MERCURIA AND DIONYSIA, BEHEADED AT ALEXANDRIA, FOR THE CONFESSION OF JESUS CHRIST, ABOUT THE YEAR 253

At this time, God also wonderfully manifested His power in certain women, among whom four are mentioned by name, two called Ammonaria, and Mercuria and Dionysia.  The last named two were aged women, one of them being the mother of many children, all of whom she nevertheless had forsaken, for Christ's sake. The other two, as it appears, were unmarried persons or young maidens, who loved their heavenly bridegroom, Jesus Christ, too much, to look for an earthly one.  Of all these it is stated that they remained so steadfast in the confession of Jesus Christ, that the Judge felt ashamed on this account, and, in order to put an end to the matter hand them beheaded.

Friday, July 26, 2013

A New Pair of Boots



This morning I got a ride from Belgrade to the intersection of I-90 and U.S. 287 near Three Forks, Montana.  I walked north on U.S. 287 for two or more miles and saw this concrete culvert in the distance.  Since I didn't get much sleep the night before (I slept in a gravel pit), I thought that I would roll out my sleeping bag inside the culvert and take a nap out of the sun.

I walked down into the ditch, stepped into the culvert and saw these boots laying on the concrete slab.  The boots I had been wearing were really wore out, torn up, had lots of holes in them--my left boot had some duct tape on it holding it together--they looked more like glorified sandals than boots.

I put down my backpack, took off my old boots and put on my new boots.  They were pretty tight-fitting--but they looked virtually brand new with a little dried mud on the soles.

I thanked the Lord for the new boots and rolled out my sleeping bag on the concrete slab.  I took a nap for almost an hour and then loaded up my backpack and hit the road.

I walked north for half a mile and put down my backpack on the side of the road.  This guy picked me up and took me to Townsend where he dropped me off and gave me a loaf of bread.  I was very grateful.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Wedding Apocalypse

 

By The Mad Jewess


The Wedding day of doom
A storm of fire…blackened plumes
Smoke in the billows of clouds.

-
A morning in white turned into a day of fright.
-
A Scripture came to mind;
The days of Lot
People….eating, drinking, making merry
The day came upon us, it did not tarry.
-

We didn’t believe it would come to an end, not at a wedding, where there is feasting and friend.
-

We coddled the enemy
Built their cities
They laughed in our face
Without any pity.

-

Profiles happy on a sunny day
Turned to devastation, from the battle array.
-

Fire, smoke and gas, all over our land
It went according to their devices and plan.
-

Babies gone, women in turmoil, the men have gone
Taken their spoil.
-

A dove of peace..
Will it settle the mind?
Has God forsaken
While America is left behind?

-
God has turned his back on the slaughter, we rejected his love, our children, we have martyr’d.
-

Waiting for rapture to unveil, yet God looked away, his word will prevail.
-
Apocalypse now, on a wedding day.

-
Repent America,
Or…The enemy will have his way.
-

 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The White House and a Manuscript



Last night I had a dream where I was at a friend's place.  I was in the kitchen looking for some tea.  While I was looking for some tea, I found these letters and packages on the counter---they were addressed to me.


I remember that one of the letters was from Kansas and one of the packages was from the White House---it had "White House" written in bold letters at the top of the package.  The few packages that I saw had my manuscript High Plains Drifter: A Hitchhiking Journey Across America in them.  I thought they were rejections from publishers.
I asked my friend about all of this mail.  He said that he found them locked in a cupboard in the kitchen.  The mail looked old---like they had been postmarked several years ago.
If this dream is from the Lord, then I believe that the package from the White House is significant.  That package had my manuscript High Plains Drifter in it.
The letter from Kansas.  My home base used to be St. John, Kansas back in 2001-2002.  I have a lot of good memories of St. John.  Whenever I hitchhiked into St. John, it felt like I was coming home.  The last time I hitchhiked through St. John was in 2008, but all the people that I knew had moved away.
The fact that these letters and packages were locked in the cupboard for a number of years is very interesting.  This reminds me of a Scripture about something being sealed until the time of the end:  Daniel 12: 9:   "And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end."
The unsealing of these letters and packages could mean that I am coming into a new phase of my life of obedience to the Lord.
Maybe I will hitchhike no more forever.

Book Review:  High Plains Drifter
The Road
Caretaker of the House--The White House


My manuscript before it was published

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Two-face


By Lori Rodeheaver

Our insecure, intimidated king, Saul, has now resorted to “watching” David.  He’s gone so far as to rally his troops to David’s house and lie in wait to kill him.  This, without a single charge – nothing of which to accuse him.  Saul’s mission is fixed upon his one-track thought – murder.

 Saul sent messengers to David’s house to watch him, that he might kill him in the morning. But Michal, David’s wife, told him, “If you do not escape with your life tonight, tomorrow you will be killed.” 12 So Michal let David down through the window, and he fled away and escaped. 13 Michal took an image and laid it on the bed and put a pillow of goats’ hair at its head and covered it with the clothes. 14 And when Saul sent messengers to take David, she said, “He is sick.” 15 Then Saul sent the messengers to see David, saying, “Bring him up to me in the bed, that I may kill him.” 16 And when the messengers came in, behold, the image was in the bed, with the pillow of goats’ hair at its head. 17 Saul said to Michal, “Why have you deceived me thus and let my enemy go, so that he has escaped?” And Michal answered Saul, “He said to me, ‘Let me go. Why should I kill you?’” ~1 Samuel 19:11-17

There was no discussion.  There was no willingness to communicate honestly or logically.  There was no seeking of peace or reconciliation.  No.  Saul’s fear, insecurity, and sin kept him from a rational approach towards any man who was rational and secure.  Instead, his motive is always evil and his goal is simply to do away with David altogether – no matter what the cost.

…But Michal, David’s wife, told him, “If you do not escape with your life tonight, tomorrow you will be killed…

Michal warned David.  She told him to leave lest he be killed by her father.  She lowered him down through the window and he ran away.  She tried to cover for him by putting a statue in his bed and telling the assassins he was sick.

But a flimsy excuse like sickness wasn’t going to stop this blood-thirsty man.  He tells his assassins to have the bed brought to them!  Sick or well, Saul’s fit to kill.  Nothing like kicking a man when he’s down,huh?

But the truth was that David wasn’t sick.  He was wise.  And when wisdom is viciously attacked and violently pursued for no valid reason, wisdom flees.  Despite the fact that he doubtless could have taken all these men on and beat them in a brawl without breaking a sweat, David relies more on wisdom than he does self-sufficiency.  Instead of taking these wicked men on and handing them their asses, he writes the 59th psalm and professes his innocence and desperate need of God’s protection and justice. Such is a godly choice, especially for a man “better versed in the art of fighting than of flying.” (Matthew Henry)

Well, someone’s got to pay for this outwitting of Mr. Murdermind.

 Saul said to Michal, “Why have you deceived me thus and let my enemy go, so that he has escaped?” And Michal answered Saul, “He said to me, ‘Let me go. Why should I kill you?’” ~1Samuel 19:17

Wait a minute…what?!  The woman who loved, helped, warned, and covered for David defames him? What?!!

Although David did have his day later with Uriah, at this point David wasn’t the murderer – Saul was!  Yet, here, we have the one closet to him slandering him as such before the powers that be.  Why?

Why couldn’t Michal just tell the truth?  Why couldn’t she say, “Please, Daddy!  I love David!  Please don’t kill him!  He’s a good man!  Leave him alone you big bully!”  If anyone had the position to say such things, it was Michal – daddy’s little girl.  Why did Michal sound more like her slanderous father than her courageous brother?  (Remember how Jonathan went to bat for David when he knew his father’s intent to kill?)  David’s own wife blackens him before his enemy.

And the final answer is: fear.  Fear is what influenced and controlled Michal.  Like father, like daughter I suppose.  She simply isn’t willing to go down, even for someone as close to her heart as David.  She isn’t willing to take the heat when it comes right down to it.  She’s self-preserving, and she doing it at the expense of her righteous and honorable husband.  Funny how attitudes and affections change when the rubber meets the road.

Our Enemy is a cold-blooded , one track mission, murderer.  He offers no fair trial, no honest discussion, and no rational reconciliation.  There will never be peace between us and he.  If we have any wisdom, we will run away when warned.  We must resist him and remember that even good intentions are spoiled by fear.  Cowardice is not wisdom, but running away isn’t always cowardice; sometimes it’s wisdom.  It’s like the biggest guy in the bar being instigated by the 10 smaller ones.  He can take them all down but if he does, he’ll end up in prison.  True cowardice is not what David displayed, but what Michal displayed. True cowardice throws anyone and everyone under the bus in an effort to self-preserve.

Therefore, if the Enemy ends up drilling us, we must not lie.  Although he will try to do away will us at all costs, we must be willing to both resist him and stand up to him at all costs.  Why?

Because Jesus is our righteous husband and he is worthy of an honest confession – no matter how high the personal cost to ourselves.  Don’t be two-faced.  Don’t defame Christ in the face of the enemy like Michal did to David.  Honor him like Jonathan.

 And Jonathan spoke well of David to Saul his father and said to him, “Let not the king sin against his servant David, because he has not sinned against you, and because his deeds have brought good to you. For he took his life in his hand and he struck down the Philistine, and the Lord worked a great salvation for all Israel. You saw it, and rejoiced. Why then will you sin against innocent blood by killing David without cause?” ~1 Samuel 19:4-5

Everyday Encounters with the Creator

Friday, January 18, 2013

Sunday, January 13, 2013

George Fox Warning False Christians

George Fox (1624-1691)

Here is some commentary on George Fox by Hall Worthington:

But, for those who preached and taught in error without the words from the Spirit of God, Fox's criticisms were definitely harsh.
He was critical of religious leaders in hopes of motivating them to stop teaching the words of the Bible, without the words of the Spirit. Here is an example, Fox writing to the Puritan priest of Ulverstone, to which Margaret Fox listened before she became a Quaker.
The word of the Lord to you, 0h Lampitt! You are a deceiver, surfeited and drunk with the earthly spirit, rambling up and down in the scriptures, and blending your spirit among the saints' conditions. You had a prophecy, as your father Balaam had; but you erred from it, as your father did. One whose fruit has withered, (of which I am a witness), and many who have known your fruit have seen the end of it, that it is withered; and do see where you are, in the blind world, a blind leader of the blind; a beast wallowing and tumbling in the earth and in the lust; one that is erred from the spirit of the Lord, of old ordained to condemnation. You are in the seat of the Pharisees, are called master by men, stand praying in the synagogues, and have the chief seat in the assemblies; a right hypocrite in the steps of the Pharisees, and in the ways of your fathers, the hypocrites, which our Lord Jesus Christ cried woe against. Such with the light you are seen to be, and by the light are comprehended; which is your condemnation who hate it, and will be so eternally except you repent. To you this is the word of God; for in Christ's way you are not, but in that of the Pharisees, as you may read in Mat 23. All that own Christ's words can see you in the Pharisees way. Christ, who died at Jerusalem, cried woe against your kind; and Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. The woe remains upon you, and from under it you can never escape, except through judgment, condemnation, and true repentance. To you this is the word of God. To that of God in your conscience I speak, which will witness the truth of what I write, and will condemn you. And when you are in your torment, (though now you swell in your vanity, and live in wickedness), remember you were warned in your lifetime. When the eternal condemnation is stretched over you, you shall witness this to be the word of the Lord God to you; and if ever your eye should see repentance, you would witness me to have been a friend of your soul. (Notice Fox speaks the words from the Spirit of God, often in the presence of God, in the Kingdom of God; click here to see more examples).
But in his day, Christ was also extremely judgmental of those who taught religion in error. For example, here is what Christ had to say about those preachers and teachers who had not been purified within their hearts: 
See Jesus' Criticisms for many more.

And John the Baptist had this to say about hypocritical religious leaders:
Yes, Fox was very critical of the religious teachers, priests/preachers, and to a lesser degree, to the professed believers of his day.
But that is because they were false Christians - they had not been changed in heart, purified, crucified of their lusts and affections.
To be a preacher, they must be trained and authorized by Christ himself, with his spirit guiding their words.
Those who taught error were blind guides, leading others into the ditch and to destruction. 

By the 1800's on, Quakers in general judged their founder's criticisms and vocal opposition to the Protestant and Catholic sects and priests to be appalling. The later Quakers judged their founders to be intolerant, rude, unloving, judgmental, etc. This is the case of unfinished  men of the flesh judging a spiritual man obviously under control of the Spirit of God; likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities, Jude 1:8-10. Fox and many of the early Quakers were in the Kingdom of Heaven, therefore heavenly dignities, deserving of respect. A man of the flesh is without understanding and supremely arrogant to judge a man of the spirit. A man of the flesh cannot comprehend the degree to which false prophets are held in contempt by God, and therefore spared no extent of verbal lashing, especially when in a debate with others listening who might have been misled.

Shiloh
Criticisms of George Fox Answered