From Strong Supplanter To Limping Prince

When he was strong he plotted
Beginning from his mother’s belly
Snatching first place was second nature
Winning was game-unfairly
If needed he would drag the heel
Trip others and slip like an eel

He gave his father the slip
When old and blind he spooked
Him with fake hairy fur
To think he was favoured Esau
He scooped his father’s blessing
Leaving his elder to rue the lesson

A great lesson it was
For trifling meat in scorching heat
Esau sold his birthright to Jacob
And for pottage messed his heritage

Twice denied and deprived
Esau began to hunt for his prey
But the Supplanter is more attuned to flight
Than an honest bare-knucled fight
So he fled to his mother’s land

There he flourished too
A servant that became greater
In all respects than his master
Contriving to thrive by sleight of stick

His flock was great and stock greater
But reckoning was drawing near
A danger that no art could neuter
There was lurking-an angry brother

As Jacob went on his merry way
He was told the news-the scorned
Was bearing the rod of vengeance
Easu was hunting with sunburned
Hate-simmering for an explosive chance

Strength in the conjuring arts
Useless in realm of martial arts
Was all he had to face the foe
Collision would be one-sided woe

Then he met the Angel
And wrestled all night
To settle the question for the ages
He held one till he was blessed
Transformed to one of the sages

The Angel touched his thigh
The sinew shrank
Producing a limping limb
He changed Jacob’s rank
Made him a Prince with God
Israel the elect of the Lord

If you had seen a sleep-deprived man
Wearily limping after dawn
The doppelganger of an astute supplanter
Would you have thought him stronger
Or weaker for the encounter?

But the limping man was greater
Than anything the shrewd and strong
Ever was-no earthly prince
Could stand before him
Out of weakness he became strong

 

Strong Saviour Of Weak Adam

OUT OF WEAKNESSWhen Adam was at his weakest
And sin’s arrow was draining his life
As blood spilled on Eden’s pristine soil
He and wife like ‘Jude the Obscure’
Were certain to face a wrathful future
Destined to die-huddled and tired
Forget the masses-they were not sired
God came on the memorable scene
With first aid to bandage the wounds
Lacerations of serpent’s roving rampage
The skin of innocent substitute stanched
The patient was well and truly patched
Strong enough to wait for the Redeemer
To arrive with knife of heart concision
From weakness then to strength
From destruction then to redemption
From hell’s despair to a home in the air

 

Word-Vision

For the simple joy of knowing
God is ever near you
That He is not hard of hearing
Nor incapable of speaking

Then you might say
I prayed but heard naught
I sought but found not
I waited but got naught

And the only thing worse
Than waiting is silence
‘I expected a revelation thus’
Not a psalm of patience

But if you want a vision
You only need to open
Your eyes like fearful Gehazi
And read writ of the holy pen

Prayerfully open the Bible
Then you will see a vision
Every promise is a revelation
Random flicks yield tailored finds

Say not ‘there is no open vision’
Or that days of prophets are gone
Look and see timeless inspiration
As each verse is a mine of unction

Railing At The Rejected King

One day when David went barefoot
In sad shame and destitute
Fleeing Absalom his rebel son
Who by flattery had his kingdom won

A rejected king – dejected and in tears
Followed by men, women and fears
Will be he ever sit on the throne again?
Or forever be on this plane of pain?

Out came a worthless man
Culled from Benjamin’s clan
His name was Shimei
And he was worse than a spy

He cursed David and said
His loss was a just punishment
For usurping the fallen Saul
He mistook tragedy for judgement

The rejected king still had warriors
One was appalled by the cripple’s slurs
And offered to send the offending head
With a sword swish to spinning dread

David in grief still dispensed mercy
He said ‘perhaps the Lord permitted’
This knave to trot and speak perversely
The sceptre of death faded briefly

The rejected king returned triumphant
For Absalom’s rebellious flair
Ended in a hanging thicket of hair
His horse bolted into vanishing air

David in triumph was not malignant
Shimei pledged and pleaded for mercy
David the happy and victorious warrior
Freely and frankly forgave his obstinacy

The tales of Shimei did not end there
For a dying David told Solomon
To finish the job as a true heir
By trapping Shimei with his demon

To catch a trucebreaker; declare a truce
Shimei agreed thinking it was a ruse
Thinking pleas would sway David’s son
But by this default his life’s day was done

When the royal of Son of David returns
To avenge railing against hallowed Word
All hollow pleas would be null and dud
Old railers cannot live in the Son’s reign
Make peace with the rejected King now
In His minority – pledge your true fealty
Before the day all are compelled to bow

Flight Of The Speckled Bird

Away she goes flying
Blood dripping from flapping
She whose Mate died to free
From the tethers of dying

A sacrifice for leprosy
A blight of discoloring sin
One bird was wrung and killed
Other sprinkled at scene
Levitical shadow of substitutionary
Cleansing offering at Calvary

Birds alike in flesh and bone
Speaks of Christ and the Church
He died her sin to atone
Purchased by His dripping blood

Not bound by earth’s gravity
Her transgressions though grave
Cannot keep her grounded
For she rides each thermal wave

Freedom to soar away
From wilderness of woe
Into firmament and space
That fallen bird took her place

This speckled bird stained
Is heckled by plainer birds
She ignores in joyful rapture
Knowing that bloodless birds
Have a flightless future

Wisely Unwise

It is a paradox when the wisest man that ever lived – King Solomon, advises us not lean on our own understanding. Surely the purpose of wisdom and knowledge acquisition is to have a foundation, a base of our thoughts and actions?

If we are are to acquire wisdom, what good does it do if we cannot rely on it?

Instead, Solomon says ‘trust in the Lord with all your heart’. This reveals the dichotomy of wisdom versus faith. Reasoning and believing are binary options we must choose from.

In the days of Christ’s earthly ministry (A Greater than Solomon), He came to a startling conclusion. He thanked the Father that the truth of the age was hidden from the wise and prudent and revealed to the ‘babes’ and simpletons.

How could it be? The Pharisees were the intellectual giants of Jewish theology. Each of them had invested many years of learning, discipline and argument to attain to the scholastic levels required to be a teacher of the law. The scribes and the priests too who were custodians and devoted students of the prophetic scrolls were wise and prudent. Yet they failed to see that Jesus was the Messiah.

They were leaning to their understanding and missed the object of their learning: the desire of all ages – Christ. What they sought was simply revealed to those who could accept it in its simplicity.

Which brings us to revelation. No one can ‘learn’ God except it is revealed to him. The knowledge of God cannot be attained by intellectual deduction. If it was, the Pharisees and scribes would be chosen for the twelve disciples. Infact, Jesus would have been crowned the High Priest, instead of suffering a cursed death for our sins.

It was revelation that opened Peter’s eyes to the identity of Christ. He rightly identified Him as the Son of God.

To the greatest thinkers of the age, Christ was an impostor, a Beelzebub, the Prince of devils masquerading as a holy man.

These learned folk admittedly were a minority of the Israelite population at the time. Forty years later, in 70 A.D, when Jerusalem was destroyed, the flower of Jewish learning was destroyed as well. The intellectual elite perished in their numbers. Why? The were blinded by their superiority complex and had missed their day of visitation.

The Christian folk, largely ‘ignorant and unlearned’ escaped the destruction. They had been warned by revelation. They were instructed to watch for the signs. Once the signs were manifested they were to run for dear life. They did.

Revelation comes only to the trusting not the knowing. Those who hearts are wide open will receive the knowledge that comes from above. Those who are proud and knowing will not know, while those begin from the point of unknowing will become all knowing. From knowing in part of earth, then they will know even as they are known.

Trust in the Lord, lean not to the understating garnered by years of manmade gospel.

In the great, bloodless contest with reasoning and revelation, leaning to revelation is the only option for those who want to stand after the storm’s judgement wrath is passed.

A Famine Of The Word

Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God , that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord : And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord , and shall not find it.

Amos 8:11‭-‬12 KJV

 

We live in curious times. A time of material plenty and unprecedented prosperity, yet is it is also a time of hunger and famine in the world. It is a paradox of abundance that starvation occurs in a world of immense food waste and spoilage.

As it is the natural so it is the spiritual. The prophet Amos tells us a coming end-time famine, not of bread and food for natural sustenance, but of the Word of God.

At this time people will be starved of the Word. They will be spiritually famished in the midst of apparent plenty.

There is more religious literature, more sermons preached, more churches, more prolific christian media, than at any time in human history, yet astonishingly, we are, by prophecy, in the straits of a severe famine.

The Famine is here as prophesied by the infallible Word of God. Yes, there is a superfluity of food. Spiritual food abounds. What kind of spiritual food is plenty during a famine of God’s Word?

In the natural world, man’s reaction to the inadequacy of farm yields to feed the burgeoning population, has been to genetically modify or ‘hybridize’ the seeds. This has ensured a rise in output, but a decrease in the consumption of wholesome food.

Spiritually, the same has happened. To feed growing congregations, to appeal to the new frontiers of Christianity, to expand into other demographics, ministers have tweaked, modified and diluted the DNA of the Word. Inedible weeds have mixed with edible wheat in a potpourri. Now there is death in the pot.

Just like the first hybridization of the Word in Eden, brought death, this is leading to nowhere. God is not obligated to accept a service from a church based on the adulterated word.

New demographics may have been added, new market segments may have been conquered, but there is still a famine of the true Word.

In the midst of the plenty fanfare that accompanies the current feast of religiosity, the timeless truths of the New Testament church have all but disappeared. The guests at the feast, knowing no better, believe they are eating a whole grain diet. Sadly, there are consuming sugary chaff. There is an illusion of sweetness and satiation, but little long term nutrition.

What’s the way back? Is there any? In a general sense no, for the prophecy must be fulfilled on a macro level. However the injunction to the individual; is what Peter said to the curious Jews in Acts of the Apostles. He said “Save yourselves from this untoward generation”. The path to salvation lies in the individual, not the collective.

This beaten path leads back to the Word, to the ancient landmark, away from the glitz and glamour of compromise. It will be a lonely path, trodden by a tiny group.

To those few, food will be abundant. They shall have the Bread that gives life even more abundantly. While on the other side there will be a famine of the wholesome grains, these few will feed and feast on the Word of Eternal Life.