Rabid Fun

John Cowart's Daily Journal: A befuddled ordinary Christian looks for spiritual realities in day to day living.

Monday, October 09, 2006

The Shortest One

Back in the early 1950s in the Jacksonville public schools, teachers made us endure a thing they called Opening Exercises. This meant we had to answer role call, listen to announcements, pledge the flag, repeat the Lord’s Prayer and read a Bible verse.

This last one was the kicker.

Alphabetically by name, every kid in class had to read the Bible verse of his or her choice to the whole class – Aloud.

A cruel and unusual punishment dreaded by kids of all faiths.

But the practice soon made Bible scholars of us all — I don’t remember any other Bible fact from those days, but we all learned that the shortest verse in the Bible is John 11:35. It is only two words:

“Jesus wept”.

That’s it.

That’s the whole verse.

Up and down the alphabet, day after day, kids of all faiths, creeds and conditions chose to read this single Bible verse — Jesus wept.

Try to force religion down our throats will they!

I remembered this verse again last Friday because Donald and Helen came over in their capacity as computer consultants (who usually charge in the neighborhood of $100 an hour) to work on my computer. They spent three hours at my keyboard then took extra work home with them to finish.

Thank God, they were helping out of love for me because I could never afford to hire them!

Donald’s professional site is at http://www.rdex.net/ Helen’s is at http://www.elemental.name/

Just to fool around, Donald brought over his new webcam. He plans to post movies on his site someday soon. But relax, no one at my house took off their clothes for his webcam movie… Although I must admit that I did undo my top button just to thrill viewers.

But seriously, among the other things Donald and Helen did was to install some special fonts so that I can now write in calligraphy script.

To experiment and to see if Blogger will take such fancy writing, I’m going to try a Bible verse in a couple of scripts. Of course, you can guess which verse I chose to type:

Jesus Wept

Jesus wept

Jesus wept

Jesus wept

Jesus wept

When I post this to Blogger, we’ll see how (or if) this experiment comes out; if it doesn’t, I won’t use it any more. No sense quoting Scripture that people can’t read.

The verse comes from the passage of Scripture which tells how Jesus wept at the tome of Lazarus even though He knew that in a few minutes He would call Lazarus out of the grave alive.

I think it not only shows the compassion of Christ but also the basic obscenity of death. This is one of those miracles which preview coming events.

“The hour is coming and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live,” Jesus said.

Even knowing that, Jesus still wept.

I thought that was the only place in the Bible that says Jesus wept, but the other day I ran across a second verse that tells about Him weeping.

At the Triumphal Entry when Jesus approached Jerusalem riding on a donkey and while crowds waved palm fronds, Luke 19:41 says:

“And when he was come near, he beheld the city and wept over it saying, ‘If thous hadst known…(but) thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.”

Jesus wept because they did not know the day of their visitation.

That’s an unsettling phrase.

I wonder how many times I have ignored the day of my visitation?

Jesus comes to mind before us. We feel a vague attraction. We put it off to think about at some more convenient time. Then we go our own way and forget Him in the normal course of life. And if we think about the incident at all again, we wonder what it was that attracted us in the first place.

Jesus said, “No man can come to me except the Father which hath sent me draw him.” He also said, “If I be lifted up, I will draw all men unto me”

Each of us has a personal “Day of Our Visitation”.

If we ignore it …

Jesus wept.

Please, visit my website for more www.cowart.info and feel free to look over and buy one of my books www.bluefishbooks.info
posted by John Cowart @ 7:03 AM


At 2:21 AM, Blogger bigwhitehat said...

Sometimes the shortest verse is also the most profound.


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