You are rich. You have power. Put a strong guard on this pathway of blood and shame. Make this tribe of robbers and murderers afraid, since they understand no other argument. It is even more merciful to prevent cruelty than to heal the wounded. It is even more righteous to protect the helpless than to comfort them in their misery. This ought ye to do, and not to leave the other undone. I charge you in the name of God.
Patrol the Jericho Road! The four travelers looked at one another with wondering eyes, for the stranger spoke with authority. When they turned around again to question him, he was gone into the night. This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, The author died in , so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 80 years or less.
This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works. The Jericho Road by Henry van Dyke. From The Outlook , Vol. Public domain Public domain false false. Namespaces Page Discussion. Views Read Edit View history.
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Display Options. In other languages Add links. This page was last edited on 9 August , at Is it a beautiful spring day and the walk enjoyable? Maybe your spring crops are already in and you found some free time. Have you joined the crowd out of boredom, or are you really following Jesus?
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Does this walk come from a place of scarcity or abundance? What are your expectations? Were you intending to go to Jerusalem today and this parade of rabbi and his followers is a convenience for you? Or did you change your plans and move your trip up in order to travel with a crowd? Are you following Jesus or are you merely swept up in the movement of the crowd?
Or maybe you are Bartimaeus.
Every day is full of an over-abundance of free time because you do not have the option to work. You are always a follower because you cannot see where you are going on your own. You can tell this one is sizable. While you hear the murmurings of a dozen conversations, there is one voice that seems to travel the distance between the speaker and your spot on this dusty road.
The voice commands your attention.
On the Jericho Road
You may not be able to see but you hear everything. You have heard of this Jesus who has been stirring up controversy from Nazareth to the Temple courts in Jerusalem. You have heard the stories — the stories of demons being cast out of men, women, and children. The stories of fierce storms that are stilled by his words. The stories of bread and fish that feed the hungry and dirty water that becomes fine wine. The stories of people who have been healed — even those born blind.
And you wonder, am I part of these stories? Could it possibly be true? Could it be possible? Is this a voice of desperation or certainty? Is it a command or plea? What is it that you want the Son of David to do for you?
What is it that tries to silence your voice? Who tells you that this is not your time?
On the Jericho Road
Whose voice tells you that you are not worthy? Now, to be fair to me, let me note that I do notice and avoid large roadkill, such as a deer. Still, this strikes me as a good metaphor for the different ways people approach life. On the other hand, some are so focused on here and now, they fail to consider eternity. Some Americans are so focused on immediate gratification, they forget to consider long-term stability.
If you know of any, please let me know. My point is that we all need to have a balanced way of looking at things. Christians need to lay up treasure in heaven while also working to make life less hellish for those who are suffering, who are oppressed, and who are rejected. We all need to save as best we can for retirement while also living as full a life as we can right now. Wise people will keep their eyes on all of it. In September , I entered Mercer University as a freshman.
Mercer followed the quarter system back then, so three courses constituted a full load. Two of my first three courses were held in Knight Hall. I was a Christianity major and Greek minor, and Knight Hall housed both of those departments. During my Mercer career, I took, as best I can recall, nineteen classes in that building—all of my Christianity and Greek courses, plus three Sociology classes and one course each in Philosophy and Political Science.
I graduated from Mercer in I enjoy teaching with Penfield. I admire their dedication and am honored to work with them. Most of the students in this class are freshmen. They just finished high school in May. But I said I was going to bore them this one time. I proceeded to tell them about how I made the long journey less than forty miles, but it seemed long to me from Barnesville to Macon.
I told them about how nervous—scared, even—I was about whether or not I could succeed in college. I told them about how my mother had died in May before I entered Mercer in September. I told them about how Mercer had changed my life. I told them about how much my professors meant to me. I told them about how I met my Good Wife there. I told them how grateful I was to share in their educational experience.
I told them some of my story. I hope I get to learn at least a little about who they are. I hope their experience at Mercer is as life-changing as mine was. I hope I make a small contribution to it. Monday, August 12, Divisions. In Luke , Jesus says that his coming causes division. He highlights the divisions that occur in families. Such divisions still happen, particularly in cultures where another religion dominates.
These days, we have divisions in the family of faith. Christians are divided against each other.
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Some such divisions have been around so long that we hardly think about them. Some of them are official and formalized, as in the existence of multiple denominations and branches of denominations. Divisions within denominations, on the other hand, are no laughing matter, and many denominations have faced, are facing, and will face them.
These days we face serious divisions within the larger family of faith. In our current political and social climate, Christians have taken up opposing positions.
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Put too simply, on one side are the evangelicals and on the other side are the progressives. But it would take a very long essay to cover the needed caveats, explanations, and exceptions.