Thursday, March 11, 2010

Volunteering at Bayonet Point --Matt 5: 10

"Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. " (Matt 5: 10)

In 1838, mobs tried to drive all Mormons out of Missouri. When Mormons fought back, the state militia was called in against them. The Mormons soon surrendered, and were ordered to sign over the deeds to their property to the state to pay for the "war." Stephen LeSeur's history on the subject (published by the University of Missouri Press) says:
"After singing the deeds, the Mormons were required to raise their hands and swear that their actions were voluntary. This proved too much for Nathan Tanner, who raised his hand and mockingly waved it over the soldiers' bayonets. 'It looks like a free volantear act and deed at the point of bayenet' he remarked sarcastically. One of the guards knocked Tanner senseless and he was carried from the ground." (183-84)

Only if our personal or inherited memories teach us to use our own power extremely carefully will we be prepared to serve in the kingdom of heaven. Without the memory of earth's lesser power being misused, how can we ever become qualified to use heaven's greater power with the necessary humility and reverence?

And oh, how great a waste it is if we turn the memory of suffering from reverence to anger!

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts with Thumbnails