Friend request me on Facebook at B. K. Neifert. And it will give you access to insights on my poetry, It will keep you up to date with my progress as a writer, And please feel free to share my profile with people you know. I'm trying to be a professional artist, And this is one more step on that journey. However, I need a place to start advertising, And any help would be appreciated. This is a business Account for Facebook, And is not my personal Facebook account.
The Gospel Play of St. Jude
B. K. Neifert
Copyright © 2020 B. K. Neifert
All rights reserved.
I dedicate this to Jesus.
I acknowledge that what I wrote is not scripture, but in the tradition of gospel plays and nativity plays, I believe this will have a rich tradition in the Christian heritage of one believer’s love for Christ.
John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress is prophecy. So is C. S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity. Our books are simply in these traditions, erring where they err, and prophesying where they prophesy. As Paul wrote to the Romans, “Let every man be a liar.” And he said this so our “Sayings can be established.”
The Story of St. Jude
Jesus was in trouble again.
He went outside and sold a cabinet He made.
Joseph didn’t mind that.
It was what else He did.
He gave half to the local beggar, Annanais
The other half He made into another cabinet.
His brother, Jude, was wandering around.
He saw it, and then wanted to
Sell a cabinet too.
So, with an air of importance, and a stupid look on his face
He took Annanais into the wood shop, to sell one of his father’s pieces.
Jesus, recognizing His brother was up to mischief,
Waited for the two in the shop.
Jesus smiled, patted Jude on the head
And told him the verse: “He who steals from his mother or father will be companion to a destroyer.” Jesus meant Judas Iscariot.
Jude, overzealous to do good like his brother
He stole like Robin Hood because the little 5 year old was a genius.
But it was for helping. He didn’t understand.
Jesus laid out a plane for His brother.
He carved a stool out of an oak stump.
Jude was told not to sell it.
All that Jesus made, Jude could sell.
Just, not the stool.
Albeit, Jude sold the stool to feed Annannais.
Jesus, testing His brother, secretly peered out the lattice
To see what Jude did with what he stole.
He did as was expected. He gave the denarii to Annanais.
Jesus caught his little brother by the scruff of the neck
And took him to the wood shop.
There, Jesus spanked him. Left a welt.
Jude was then told that the stool was worth more than a denarii
(That is, a “Day’s Salary)
And if he wanted to give to the poor, he should think about that.
More is not always better. But a stool needs sold at the right price.
Undersell, and it’s not enough to feed others.
Oversell, and you committed a wrong against the buyer.
Jesus then told Jude how the stool was not his, and that was why he undersold it.
Had he worked on it, he’d have sold it right.
Jude then commenced to tell Jesus of a prophecy.
How materials would appear and miracles should it be his.
Jesus laughed, and said something along the lines of theft being theft, and no miracle will supplement hard work; not to listen to any prophet, because in time, he will have to know right from wrong while it seems noone else does.
Jude sat on his big brother’s massive 6’5 foot tall lap holding his little stuffed dog. The family loved them. Jesus thought it like a family’s lamb. They always kept dogs.
Jesus stayed away from the bath houses.
Jude had a fondness for them.
Swimming pools, essentially, with hot, 120 degree water.
Then there was the cold water, with ice. He’d, with James and Simon
Visit the bath houses.
He jumped into one pool, then another.
James would disappear. Jude always wondered where.
Simon wouldn’t tell him.
They didn’t like Jude because he got special
Treatment from his brother, Jesus.
They all loved Jesus, but had no honor for Him.
They liked to listen to Him humiliate the Pharisees
But He seemed to always say He was the Christ.
That heated the family up,
And Joseph would strike Jesus every Sabbath.
Jesus would weep, wondering what He did wrong.
Jude, with Puppy, would climb into Jesus’ lap, and lay at His bosom.
Jesus would hold his brother, who was always sad when Jesus was sad.
Jesus would tell him, “Weep with He who weeps; Laugh with he who laughs.”
Jude never heard his brother laugh, But Jude got scolded for going to the bath houses.
James, Simon and not Joses—He was too young, just an infant—
Along with the brothers from Joseph’s other marriage
Would have struck Jesus for discipline.
So, Jesus disciplined little Jude Alphaeus.
Jesus would take the little boy, and dunk him in the nearby Jordan which a tributary passed by Galilee in those days.
He’d dunk him into the water, cold, then he’d rub Jude head to toe with essential oils, Lavender, Myrrh and Frankincense.
Those smells were like home to Jesus, the oils His mother anointed Him with.
Jude did not like this, but it was the ritual for every visit to a bath house.
Jude always preferred hot water, but Jesus did not want him near the bathhouses.
Jesus would stand waist deep in the tributary, and take lye and scrub the filth off Jude.
Jesus would then get whooped by Joseph when He got home.
Joseph saw nothing wrong with Roman culture, Gladiatorial games, bath houses, but he didn’t know His sons were being whores. Gladiators, he consoled himself, were just slaves.
It came to pass
That Jesus and Mary and Joseph were having a fight.
The contention was bitter, but Jesus didn’t speak a word.
His furnishings were laid with skill, but austere
So Joseph was hurling abuse at Jesus, and called Him a bastard.
Jesus did not raise His voice one iota.
He heard this before.
Jude was in the side of the one room house,
James and Simon were fiddling with the household idols.
Joses cried in the crib.
The family was poor.
Jesus had only sold three furnishings and was screamed at for giving most of the money to Annanais.
Jesus said: “On one half they use coals.”
Joseph, at this point, had enough of Jesus. He cast Jesus out of the house.
Mary bawled, she loved her son more than all the others.
Woe to that man who casts out the Son of Man from their hearts
For a time, be silent, and then welcome Him back in.
Jesus had left with no thing, just His cloak which Mary made and His tunic.
Jude watched, lingering by the fire stoop.
He was too young to know what was happening.
Jesus’ fame spread.
The whole family, including Joseph, were hearing about Him.
Joseph said, “I knew he would get caught up by a radical. I hear He went to John the so called Baptist. That boy should have been married like His older half-brothers.”
Joseph loved Jesus, having raised Him up like a son.
But he felt like Jesus was struggling with His mother’s strange birth.
He pitied his son but did not honor Him.
About 7 years later Jude, James and Simon would be martyred by Judas Iscariot, who would then become King of all Rome as Emperor Claudius.
Jesus was accumulating great fame throughout the land.
So, Mary, James, Jude and Simon went to meet Him.
Jude was excited to see Jesus. As it was, he was lonely without Him.
So, the four found a crowd, where they supposed Jesus was healing the sick.
This was why Mary loved Him.
They sent message to Jesus by James, but were told not to bother Him.
He then escaped his family and found His brother reclining with the other apostles.
Jesus smiled a big smile, and hugged His little brother.
Jude cried and wanted Jesus to come home. Jesus would not, but told his brother to stay with Him and His family would soon come.
They did, and were reunited.
But, Jude wanted to go tell Joseph.
But Jesus said, “He who takes the plough and looks back, is not worthy for the kingdom.”
Mary told Jude to stay, and she promised Joseph would come looking for him.
Jesus had already chosen the twelve.
Jude was the youngest.
He was given the money changer, but Judas came to him with knowledge.
Judas, knowing Jesus kept saying someone would betray Him, and how Jesus hated money
Told Jude he would betray Jesus because he had the money changer.
Jude freaked out and began chasing Judas around the desert where they walked.
Judas would not take the coins.
So, Jude kept it, after his brother told him not to worry.
As Jude chased Judas around the desert, Jesus rolled His eyes, trying to calm the both of them down.
Both were hyperactive, both were very smart; Jude did not want the money so a rumor sprung up that Jude was the one who would betray Jesus.
Except James and Peter, they all accused Jude, but thought Jesus just meant a thief; but it was much worse.
Judas would harass Jude for the money and would not let up until Jude gave him some.
He would always say it was for the poor, but Jude could not tell. So, he went to Jesus, Who told him, “To Him who asks, give Him your tunic, too.”
So, Jude let Judas get money; Judas also rallied a band of robbers who would follow Jesus, and the apostles were getting a bad name.
But, more had faith that Jesus was good, and the people heard mixed reports about Jesus.
Judas saw this opportunity, and began setting up the Apostles for crimes they did not commit.
The leaders were not fooled, because Judas’ father was Caiaphas, the High Priest.
They accused the Apostles of the thefts Judas committed, and the wicked all believed it except for the Governors.
Jude loved his brother’s stories. They were his favorite pastime.
Jude would sit beside his brother, on His lap, which made the other Apostles mad because they thought he was a thief,
And listened to Jesus’ stories.
His favorite was the story about investing coins.
But Jesus always claimed that Jude had to eat Him and drink His blood. This was his least favorite because it seemed unclean. When inquired Jesus would smile and pat Jude’s head.
Jude had never believed Jesus’ miracles, but loved Jesus very much. Judas was familiar with idols and witchcraft, and always explained how Jesus did his tricks. “He hid it in his cloak,” or, when Jude was sore vexed, “He gave the people crumbs.” Jude, by reason of his Brother’s goodness, and nothing else, followed Him.
Jude understood the stories better than his friends did, and James would take care of Jude.
James became like a father to Jude, being 23 years old.
He took the responsibilities of spanking Jude when he misbehaved.
So, when Jesus paired them off, Jude thought he would be with James.
Instead, he got Judas.
James was furious with Jesus because Judas was only 13.
But Jesus did this because of the proverb: “He who steals from his father or mother is companion to a destroyer.”
So, Judas would abandon Jude, who was companion with demons most of his life.
Judas lived without a care.
He believed he was right, and those he killed, he thought it was a service.
People were starting to make a rumor about Jesus being the Christ.
Judas was employed by Rome to silence this.
Jude, he found he could easily
Make a patsy.
Jude was hated by his peers; demons had a love for him because he would always show them mercy.
He’d cast them out, but not like his brother.
The human in demons loved Jude because he always made them feel normal.
The demons in Jude, or so thought Jude he was demon possessed but he was not, would always find friends who were chief sinners.
This was because Jude could ease a demon possessed man’s suffering.
He even had visions like the demons
But was prophesying Judas and his convent.
Jude found James and then his other brothers.
Jude had Judas as a partner, when the Apostles paired off. As was told in the previous chapter.
Caiaphas, Judas’ grandfather, wanted to meet the brother of the LORD.
Caiaphas was familiar with strange coercions, and often would sit with Jude and tell him his own stories.
Jude loved stories of all kind.
Jude listened, loving his Brother’s stories much more.
Jude would listen about Gideon and David, the man famous for Axes and the Kings.
Caiaphas had his own stories, which were always strange.
About Gideon and David, the man famous for Axes and the Kings.
His brother’s stories always taught right from wrong, how to discern wickedness and evil and be right.
Caiaphas, his stories seemed esoteric, never to divulge either good or bad, never to pass moral judgment.
Jesus told his stories, and Caiaphas another.
This led Jude to start having night terrors, and strange urges of the flesh.
Jude, after one year under Caiaphas’ tutelage, came to his brother.
Jesus was sore with Jude, spanking him to welts for entertaining great lies.
Jesus said to Jude, “I will give you words, and those you will eat by.”
Yet none would eat Jude’s stories because Caiaphas captured the masses.
Jesus said to Jude, “Scribes, draw forth what is old and new.”
Jesus meant wisdom.
Jude ate well his whole life leading up to his crucifixion at eighteen. He was a hard worker, whom Caiaphas kept fed.
But Christ saw in Jude what others didn’t: a willing heart.
Though Jude was spurned by the peoples.
Jesus had come to the Temple a second time.
Word of what he previously did made him look like a lunatic,
And there were false reports that Jesus was planning to commit arson on the Temple.
What he meant was that the temple would be destroyed by Rome; that is Babylon.
And He meant His body would be raised.
Jude looked on the white façade of the Temple walls
And considered what Jesus said about White sepulchers.
Jude looked on the gold doors of the Temple
And considered what Jesus meant by offering sacrifice by the gold of the Temple.
It was more holy as a tent, and as a small cabin, when Haggai prophesied, and implored it be built.
Jesus did not,—so Jude concidered—like the extravagance
But it fulfilled the prophecy, or so the Jews thought.
Jude considered God might have meant Him, Christ Jesus, but Jude could not consider himself.
Yet, Jude and all Christians will become temples.
Jesus taught Jude about the last days.
“You will hear the sounds of war.”
“Waves will be troubled.
“Many will be put in dungeons for the faith. However, not yet!
“The moon and sun will darken.
“The stars will fall from heaven.
“And then look up! Christ is coming soon,
“But not one hair on the head will be hurt.”
Jude saw his brother angry; for the first time.
The thunders declared, so it seemed, as Christ used scourges to beat the hypocrites out of the temple.
He then, as someone said,—Jude hid in James’ bosom because he feared for Jesus’ life—Jesus cleansed the temple with some of the righteous priests, who loved Him more than the rest.
Jesus came into Jerusalem already.
When Jesus first came into Jerusalem, He road an ass. It was stubborn.
He then dismounted it half way, and saddled the colt.
Jude felt like the Donkey was like the Fig Tree his brother cursed.
They prepared the Passover, and ate.
When Jude saw his Brother break the bread and say, “This is my body,” and poured out the cup saying, “This is my blood, take and eat,” Jude felt relieved that Jesus meant this and not His actual blood or body.
Prior to this, Judas was mad at Jude because he had a hard time counting change.
So Jude fought Judas with a bitter argument about the money changer.
Jude knew Judas was a thief, but was now zealous to give to the poor.
Jesus told him to give the money changer, so, Jude did, and now Judas had left to betray Jesus and had a heart that was wicked.
Jude’s whole being, even his heart, soul and mind, subconsciously believed, to even write his own guilt, that he would betray his brother.
But, he would not.
He sat with the twelve in a well lit room with gas lanterns.
They were bright and James sat next to Jude.
Jesus said all among Him were safe.
None believed that Jude was, save James and Peter who Jude thought he betrayed many thousands of times.
Jude asked Jesus, “Why do you show yourself to us and not the world?”
Jesus said in response what is recorded in the Book of John.
The night Jesus was betrayed, Jude truly thought he would betray Jesus, and did not understand what Judas did by dipping his bread into the bowl, like the other Apostles. Thus, he felt sore wicked because he lacked faith, and was derided by the other disciples, save Peter, James and John. So, Jude followed Jesus out into the field where Judas would betray him. When Judas did, Jude felt ire, because Jesus was his most beloved brother. When Peter struck the ear off the high Priest, Jude rebuked him, but then saw Jesus plainly heal his ear, and at that moment believed, and resolved to never leave his brother’s side.
Jude then visited Jesus in prison, after Peter betrayed Him three times.
Jude was told this, “The world will try to trick you into calling yourself the Christ. Behold, the Son of Man will descend from the clouds, and you will witness it with your own eyes, all who are raised with Christ.
“Do not be deceived. You can have no part of Me if you say to those of this world, ‘Behold! Your God!’
“For many false Christs will now rise up, those fully taken to a delusion. You will be humble, and do not call yourself a prophet. Prophesy;— your sins are forgiven.”
Jude had failed many times, but still his sins were forgiven because he desired to be good with all his heart and soul; and his brother did forgive him, even of blasphemies, because his heart was turned to despise evil and covetousness.
For desiring Christ, and nothing else, he was made righteous.
Jude, when Jesus was captured, came with his brother into the prison, because Caiaphas was intimate with him, and loved Jude more than Judas, his own flesh.
Jude went into the prison, where Jesus spoke to him, what is in the previous chapter.
Jude came out, and saw the elderly Peter warming his hands, to deny Jesus for warmth.
Jude rebuked him.
When Christ was being crucified, Jude fled; though: Hypocrisy was his most hated sin, and when he fled back to Joseph with Simon and James, Jude was ticked off at him self for fleeing.
Joseph welcomed the three boys, but was swiftly possessed and threw them all out, where Caiaphas found Jude and made him slave to Claudius.
James was to be made king of the world.
Simon was to be made scoundrel.
Jude died in prayer, wishing to see his brother again.
James was not martyred, and swiftly escaped his title, and began to make war on demons by casting them out, who to this day, still try to make Christians sin by coveting this world.
Simon fought against the church until Jude found him again in captivity.
Jude, while in captivity, was visited by Peter. Jude had prayed a foolish prayer, but better to pray foolishly than to betray with your own hand.
Many are Satan’s spies, who hear you. Jude had poured his heart out to God, and they would try to cause it to pass in order to trap Jude.
Fear not, but pray.
Jude hadn’t seen my brother feed the multitudes
For Christ is our brother whoever believes in Him.
So, Jude doubted his brother’s miracles his whole life, even when he saw the centurion’s ear healed.
He could not, but doubt, even knowing his brother’s power, for Jude thought himself undeserving his entire life.
This is okay, because Jude believed His brother was God, even without miracles.
It was because He is good.
But sometimes Jesus’ words were confusing, but some words were Jesus’. Some words came from our father.
Jude had grown older, seeing that Christ is God come in the flesh, remembering things as they came.
For, right before he was killed, Jude remembered how he and the other apostles were in the seas.
How God, in Psalm 107, could only command the sea.
I attest that Jude was a child of God.
These were his sins.
Christ washed them away, and prepared a promised land.
The Daughter of Zion, whom I had seen in vision.
She who conceives our child Christ to conquer the wicked.
Let those who have ears listen:
Forget not the holy land, that virgin of Israel.
She is exceedingly beautiful.
After Jude’s brother died, and he was homeless; but before he was martyred, he stood on the Mount of Olivet and spoke these parables to a small crowd of Christians:
Of the prophet and the judge
There were two men.
The first was a prophet.
The prophet, when he saw the wickedness of mankind
Would pray to the Father in heaven
And would accuse men of being wicked.
He would reprove for the sake of correction
And nothing he spoke was with intent to harm
But rather was with intent to increase faithfulness
Among the sons of men.
Never did he say, “You sin like thus,
“And, therefore, you are a worthless fellow.”
But rather, “The whole sins like thus,
“And your sins will condemn you.
“Not that I have never sinned,
“But that you are sinning right now,
“And I am concerned for your well being.”
When men heard this,
They felt sore vexed
Because it seemed like the Prophet was accusing
Them right to their face.
But it was rather the whole who the prophet accused;
And men stood up in judgment against this prophet
To say, “He is more wicked in his judgments
“Then we are in our murders and thefts!”
The second man was a judge.
He would see of men, “They are righteous,
“And they are, for the whole part, better than this man.”
But, when he saw a man’s sins,
He would say, “This man is incredibly wicked.
“This man, I have seen him be wicked
“I have seen his sins,
“Because I have made a diligent search for them.
“I will not depart from him
“Until I am justified in myself
“That I have found error in him.”
This man, all men loved
Because he had accused the righteous
And had encouraged the wicked to sin
By justifying them, and by making himself justified in their eyes.
Wherever he was, he made sure he was justified in their eyes
And that the truth, even, was abominable in the sights of men
Because he would rather be justified in his position
And not the truth; and once he found sin
He went home and said, “I know I am righteous
“And this other man is a sinner more than I.
“For, the prophets are judgmental,
“And I am humble and give grace to the sinner.”
Which man will stand in judgment?
Who is the hypocrite?
Of the builder
There was a man who was a great builder.
He was skilled in his craft.
He saw a river which needed a bridge
In order to be safely forded;
Therefore, he set to task
Building that bridge.
It was his only occupation for ten years,
And he lived off the fruit of other’s aid
Because he could neither afford to gain an income
For all his time was spent building the bridge
That was needed to get to the pastures on the other side.
The peoples became wroth with him,
Though, believing his work was for nothing
And therefore those who aided him
Wanted him to obtain employment
And therefore cease from building the bridge.
The shepherds told him to cease
His fathers told him to cease
His mothers, his friends, and his aunts and uncles
All told him to stop building the bridge.
For, they believed that the bridge was not worthy employment
And believed that the ten years were spent in vain.
It had happened that the man was finished with the bridge
But for spite, none of the peoples of the towns would use it.
For, they were haughty and said, “The man had not gained an income
“These past ten years, and spent his whole fortune
“On building a bridge. Therefore, none of us will use it
“For though the toll is affordable, we believe he ought to have been
“Employed by us, so we could exact his labor for nothing.”
Therefore, the peoples did not use the bridge
Because they had become jealous that he had finished what he set out to do
And secretly wished him to be like them
Working for unjust and unfair wages;
Therefore, they would not give him his wages.
It soon came to pass that a great flood of troubles was upon the land
Where the peoples needed to ford the river.
The peoples all saw the signs, great thunder clouds
Were amassing, and the clouds would return after the rains.
Therefore, the people were still haughty
And decided that in spite of the bridge being built
They would ford the river where it was shallow.
They got to the place, where though it was shallow normally
The rapids were so strong they could carry a horse away.
The peoples stubbornly said, “This bridge is not sacred,”
And, lo, the bridge was not sacred, this they were right.
But, the bridge was built when the waters were shallow
So the people could find safe pasture into the other lands.
The man, however, had crossed the ford with his wife and children
Safely, and there found pasture on the other side.
When the neighboring village saw him
They were astonished that only he had crossed—
For the other bank was high, and went up to mountain roads.
They said, “Had you not worked for ten years on this bridge?
“And had not the peoples of your own town been wise enough to cross it
“Instead of Fording the rivers? We surely would have taken the whole
“Of them, except bodies are washing ashore where they seemed to have crossed.”
That is this generation.
A man has his skilled work, but none want it and complain
That he is lazy.
Of two men and which was righteous?
There were two men.
The first, a lot of what he predicted was wrong
But he did what God told him to do.
He’d say, “On this date, this would happen.”
And it didn’t happen on that date.
It, rather, happened, if it happened, a lot longer.
He, making one thousand shekels a month,
Gave twenty-thousand shekels to the poor.
He healed the lame with his words
And comforted them.
The blind were healed;
The stopped ear was opened;
The demons were cast out;
Even limbs were restored.
Yet, he would not credit this as his own doing
But knew God did these things because God loved him.
He spoke what was wise
Though he got his predictions wrong.
He also contemned the sinners with his words
Though he did not judge them
The sinners felt condemned when he spoke
Therefore, they hated him.
The second man, every word he predicted came true.
He didn’t do what God told him to do.
He would say, “On this day, this will happen.”
And it would.
He, making two billion shekels a month
Gave none of it to the poor.
He would tell the sinners, “God loves you”
But would not correct them to their face,
But it made them feel secure.
He would hug the sinners,
And make them feel very happy about themselves.
He never told anyone that they were wrong,
But rather, everyone was right because he was a murderer
And he didn’t want to accuse others for his own sin.
Every sinner felt like they were saved
Though they had great sin,
And they were comforted by this word,
“A mass murderer, if on his death bed
“Confessed Christ, he will go to heaven.”
So, they all committed murder
Believing their final confession would save them.
Which is the prophet?
There were also two men.
Both heard God’s voice.
God said to both,
“You do what I ask,
“And I will give you everything your heart
“Desires, even wives, children, and vineyards
“And man-servants and female servants
“And oxen and sheep in great number.”
The first man,
He listened to God’s voice
And being a great sinner
He hindered himself
And caused a great calamity
He had sinned
And therefore had shame cast upon him.
For, his sin was known to everyone.
But, he had only made it known because God had told him to repent.
He believed in God’s voice
But, the more good he did
And the more he waxed in righteousness
The more he grew hesitant in his belief that God would save him.
He believed God would not even
Give him a mote of what his heart desired because he was humble.
The second man,
An even greater sinner,
Knew he had heard God’s voice, too
But decided to act very foolishly instead.
He went out and began to torment his family and friends
And began to spill innocent blood.
He began to whore-monger
And would not repent.
He amassed a great following of friends and allies
And taught them to seek loves
Instead of God.
When asked about his crimes
He felt shame, but would not repent.
He said in his heart, “There is no God
“And I don’t want to be mad like my brother.”
So, he continued on sinning.
Which is faithless
And which is unfaithful?
Who is the greater sinner of the two?
The man who did what God told him
But didn’t believe there would be justice?
Or, the man who did unjustice
In spite of God’s commandment?
Jude then said, “I give you the Ten Commandments the way my brother taught them:”
I. Thou shalt love Jesus with everything you have and own, and have no other God.
II. Thou shalt not put any thing before your service to Jesus.
III. Thou shalt not use God’s name falsely, in order to deceive, nor use it in anger.
IV. Thou shalt rest in Jesus alone to save you, and shall not oppress your hireling by making them work on the Sabbaths, nor defraud them of any of their rights.
V. Thou shalt obey your father and your mother, so it will be well with your soul, and you will prosper.
VI. Thou shalt not kill,— or even be angry with your brother to slander him nor defraud him in any way.
VII. Thou shalt not commit adultery, or even look at any woman with lust, for your intent is to shame her, and therefore commit a filthy act.
VIII. Thou shalt not desire what is clearly not yours.
IX. Thou shalt not even steal a worthless thing from your neighbor or friend, yes, even your brother and especially not your father or mother.
X. Thou shalt not lie in order to put yourself at an advantage or your enemy at a disadvantage. You must surely tell the truth.
*. Love your fellow neighbor the same way as you surely love yourself in all things.
Of a hypocrite and a righteous man.
There was a hypocrite
Who, seeing that he had done much wrong
Said, “The LORD shall not exact from me
“This evil deed. I have murdered,
“Slandered my brother,
“I have stolen from him,
“And I have committed adultery
“Under every oak.
“LORD, I see I am justified by Your blessing
“Knowing I have sinned, You will not exact it from me.
“For, so I have committed offences,
“My grain offering shall be sufficient for the payment;—
“The fruit of my drink offerings and oblations poured into the ground.
“Yes, LORD You shall not visit me for this.
“Rather, when the bugle gets called
“I will enter into my heavenly abode.”
There was a righteous man
Seeing he had done much wrong
Who said, “LORD, I had defiled myself
“In the way. I have lain with two virgins
“Who were not my wife
“And I have defiled the covenant
“With the woman I was betrothed to.
“I had also done violence,
“And had lied for gain.
“I had spoken ill against You
“In my heart, and I had cursed my neighbor
“And I had falsely accused the innocent.
“LORD, I know certainly Your wrath
“Shall abide on me, until the day
“That these abominations are loosed from me,
“For how else, LORD, am I to be made clean?”
Of Lazarus and Judas.
This is what they said:
“Jesus, I have healed in Your name.
“Cast out demons, seen amputations healed.
“I had spoken Your word with truth.
“I have given what I could to the poor.
“I have tried to be kind, and give just reproof.
“I had tried to make the brokenhearted smile.
“I had done this all because I loved You
“And had believed You loved me too,”
Spoke Jesus’ friend Lazarus.
“Jesus, I had healed the lame
“And prophesied in Your Name.
“I tithed to the church my ten percent.
“I had not made sinners ashamed.
“I had done this because You glorified me,
“And I continually remembered Your burnt offering;
“I had known I am a sinner,
“So, therefore, by knowing I have sinned, I am justified,”
Said Judas Iscariot.
Of the good scribe and the bad scribe.
There was a good scribe who saw
His Master, and loved his Master
Who knew many languages.
His master spoke to him in His native tongue
Telling the good scribe
To translate the words He spoke
And give letters to His fellow landowners.
So, the good scribe, knowing what his Master’s business was
Translated the letters into the other languages
Paying careful heed to give the meaning of his Master’s words
Though, sometimes phrases needed changed
And sometimes new metaphors needed to be drawn out.
There was an evil scribe who never saw his Master
Nor did he love his Master, but rather loved his mistress Mammon
Who was given to him for his service as a scribe.
He knew many languages too.
He, having correspondence from his Master by letters
Took down the words literally, yet being careless
Added to the letters ideas which were his own
And not his Master’s.
Both of these servants were employed in the task of sending out the letters
To the local landowners, yet the Master secretly wished to see
Which was the more trustworthy of His scribes.
The Master cared nothing for exact words
But rather cared that His meaning would be understood by the local landowners
So they could carry out His business too.
The report came back, however, several months later
That there was confusion by what the Master had meant in his letters.
So, the Master had conferred a meeting with His neighbors
Using the two scribes to speak in His presence.
The good scribe, he gave right speech in the presence of his Master
Telling the local landowners all that his Master wanted
In their own tongues. Skillfully he told the meaning of what
His Master wanted.
The other scribe, being well versed in the modern age
Told, in the presence of his Master—for he had never met his Master
The Master’s words. He told them literally, while
Adding to the words what weren’t there.—for the peoples loved simplicity
And he wished to make his Master’s speech easier to understand
In the presence of the Master’s peers;—because he felt
His Master had used too difficult of speech,
And that was the reason it created confusion.
The Master saw this scribe had confused His peers
And did not give them the right directions
Thus He handed the scribe over to another master
Who cared nothing for him at all.
The Master said to His scribe, “I had paid you great sums to write this
“And I had made sure you were well fed, clothed and not needy.
“My other scribe, a slave, he told my words perfectly
“So I will give him a hired salary,
“And you will work for other men who care nothing for your welfare.”
There was a man
Who felt much shame.
His shame was no greater than other men’s
But it caused him great distress.
So, he clothed himself with cursing
To bring upon others their judgment
And to raise himself a head above all.
When the time came to be judged
The LORD told him, “Worthless Servant
“All of the good deeds you have done
“Would have been sufficient
“Had you not made accusations against your fellow brethren.
“Now, all of the judgments you made about others
“Will fall on your own head.”
Thus, the worthless servant was cast into hell.
There was another man
Who felt he did much good.
He felt no shame for anything he did
And no distresses, though he was a grievous sinner.
He brought no accusation against any
And brought no man down
Yet had not any good deed done.
When it came time to be judged
The LORD said to him, “Worthless Servant
“Though you have not judged
“Others, you yourself have done nothing good.
“For, there were the starving,
“And you did not feed them.
“There were the naked
“And you did not clothe them.
“How can your sins be covered
“With a covering,
“If you have done no good?”
Thus, the worthless servant was cast into hell.
There was another man
Who had committed much offense
Even murder, blasphemy and adultery.
He felt constant sorrow for the shame
Yet, one day he happened upon a certain carpenter’s Son
Who told him, “My Servant
“Forsake your belongings
“And your worldly desires
“And come, follow Me!” So the servant came
Selling all he possessed
And gave to the poor.
This one the LORD said,
“Well done, good and faithful servant.”
There was yet a last man
Who had committed much unpardonable sins in man’s eyes
And was exceedingly rich.
He had beaten the poor
He had stolen from them
And he had stripped the poor of their garments.
Yet, upon hearing of a heavenly abode
He climbed a Sycamore tree
And cried out, “Master! Have Mercy!”
Thus, he came to the carpenter’s Son.
He proclaimed, “I will be honest
“I will give half of all I own to the poor, for I am very rich!
“And I will only do what is lawful from here on out!”
This one, the LORD said, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
Of the skilled Craftsman.
There was a skilled craftsman who was blessed
In everything he took up in the trade.
Skilled he was with his craft
Yet none would purchase it.
He, at the outset, showed skill from his beginning
Yet, none would purchase his work
Because he was a Christian.
So, the Craftsman increased his skill with great learning
To where he was master of his trade
And none were his equal.
Yet, still, none would purchase his craft!
Woe to this people!
For if this little one
Who waxed in skill with his trade
Could not but earn little from such great talents,
What can the poor do to earn even the least crumb of bread?
So, poor of this people, know this is your time of suffering
For even great men, with great skill
Are prevented from earning bread by Satan.
What can you do, to earn the least bit of bread
If a master Craftsman cannot earn bread with what he makes?
Such is this world where lesser skilled craftsmen take home their bread
Because the world is corrupt, and they worship Mammon
Not the LORD their God.
Yet, great rewards abound in heaven for you little poor ones
Of the flock
Should you hold on until the end
When the Son of Man descends on the clouds of heaven;
When He is seen, then the LORD shall take you up
And you shall earn all the sustenance your soul lacked
While on your sojourn here on Earth;
Even wives, children, and trades when Christ reigns
For one thousand years on the earth.
He who has an ear, listen!
Of the man who wished to earn his master coin.
There was a man
Whom after hearing his Master tell a story
Thought to himself
“I hear of the man who made ten coins with his Master’s one
“And the man who made five coins with his Master’s one…
“I wish to make one thousand coins with one
“Not, however, for the cities I will gain
“But to enrich my fellow heirs to the kingdom.”
So, the man had his one coin
And used it to buy himself an instrument.
He learned upon that instrument
How to play skillfully, and played to bring joy to others.
He had earned from that instrument five coins.
He then spent the five coins to buy wisdom.
He spent ten years learning wisdom
All the while working upon his instrument
From time to time.
From his wisdom
He earned one hundred coins.
Then, the man had spent the one hundred coins
To go work for a harsh taskmaster
Making himself a slave to a wicked man.
He gave all his wages to this man
So the man would yield to him some skill or knowledge.
The man had earned from his taskmaster ten coins
From his investment of one hundred;—
So, the man, seeing he had spent his true Master’s coin unworthily
Left his earthly master, that being Mammon
And went and used the ten coins to purchase
Himself a field for go0d fruit which he used to feed the poor and brokenhearted.
This work he did for the poor
Earned him back the one hundred coins he had spent on Mammon
So he had returned an investment for the wasted money
He had spent to make himself a slave.
Then, having one hundred coins
The servant was sad because he had not earned one thousand coins.
Yet, joyful will that servant be who even earns one extra coin with his Master’s money.
Of Two Servants
There were two men.
One of the men murdered
One of the men committed adultery
One of the men blasphemed unto death
One of the men had made fraudulent oaths.
The other did none of this
But rather had unbelief.
The first man,
Seeing he had been pardoned for all of his sin
Decided that it was good.
So, he lived his days securely
Never in fear of judgment.
He spent his days cheerfully
Giving to the poor and receiving nothing in return.
He builded houses and churches and places of rest
For the poor, and thanked God every day
That his blasphemies, oaths, murders and adulteries all were forgiven.
For, he was happy that he was permitted to do his good deeds in the name of the
Father, Son and Holy Ghost.
The second man
He did not see a reason to be pardoned from his sins.
He decided that he was good.
So, he lived his days securely
Never in fear of human justice.
He spent his days cheerfully
Not giving much to the poor, but rather expected every borrowed thing to be returned in measure,
As was the custom.
He did not thank God, but rather thanked himself
For all of the provisions he had stored up for himself.
He was happy, and decided that he did good deeds enough,
Sufficient that he had never thought he had sinned.
It came to a time when both men died,
The righteous man with the hypocrite.
The Father asked the first man,
“What had you done?”
The man replied,
The LORD said,
“Well done good and faithful servant.”
The Father asked the second man,
“What had you done?”
The man replied,
“Oh, Father, I made a fortune, and blessed myself upon the Earth.”
The LORD said,
“What had you done with your sustenance?”
The man said,
“Well, I spent it for my stomach.”
The Father said,
“What of the poor?”
The man said,
“I’ve given some to the poor.”
The Father said,
“Yet, I have another man who had just died today.
“He had given much to the poor, more than his ten percent.
“Though, he had never made much, nor blessed himself
“On the earth, he was neither rich, nor satisfied with his life
“Except in his giving.”
The man then said,
“Well, what must I do to be saved?”
The LORD said,
“Be gone, I never knew you, you proud and wicked servant.”
A dish of vegetables
Goes into a kiln
At a low heat.
If one takes the vegetables
Out too early
They are not to the tooth.
So, when the vegetables come out
And are hard to the tooth,
They go back into the kiln.
So are the sons of men;
With affliction they are made wise
So that they are palpable to the tooth.
Jude, in a vision, then went on a journey, to foresee all of the religions of the world, and their error:
1. St. Jude Meets Muhammad
Ancient kingdoms, long ago
Bore witness to Zoroaster,
The so called prophet
Of the Persian kingdoms
Used to unite Cambyses II’s
Kingdom, after his father “shamefacedly” confessed
The religion of the Jews.
This prophet’s “faith” was strong
And bore resemblance to the Jews’
Who sojourned there
In Great Persia
Right before the
People of the One True God
Were sent home to Jacob’s lot.
Myths of the Zoroaster
Reached the North African Sub-Continent
Where a man sat in his loft
Looking for ways to join his nation
Into a great and powerful sovereignty.
“God must reveal the truth
“Should God exist…” thought this man.
Thus, he wrote upon the pages
The Book of the Muhammadene.
St. Jude came to see whether this religion were true
For he was in a moment of doubt.
He had walked with his Brother Jesus,
But had been deceived by the Baalim
Even hell should he confess the Jesus as LORD.
Thus, he sought to see if this religion were true.
This Baalim Muhammad,
Who deceived Jude,
He saw, was a great king
Who built the tool for his conquering
Called The Faith in the Book of the Recitation.
Jude, saw this and was in wonder.
“Is conquest the religion of my ancestors?”
Jude could speak any language
By the ministry of the Holy Spirit
Should one be implored to preach
The Gospel; or even be protected
In a foreign land.
Thus, he made arrangements with
The King Muhammad
By means of great diligence.
He petitioned the standard-bearers
To allow him one hour with the king
Jude, being a peasant
Was still a great man for having known the Christ.
Muhammad sat before Jude,
And the two talked.
On every subject of morality
The two were in agreement with one another.
It startled Jude so great to see
That every word spoken by Muhammad
Seemed the law of his God.
Then, Jude looked toward the City of Mecca
And saw them bow down to a rock.
“Why do your people idolize that rock?”
Muhammad gazed upon it,
“Because it is holy ground.”
“Is it a rock that you worship
“Or is it Allah?” said Jude.
“I worship Allah.”
“So, does the Spirit of Allah inhabit that rock
“More than in other places?”
“Allah’s Spirit does not inhabit places,”
Said Muhammad, in a great wrath.
“Allah’s Spirit, surely does not,
“But what about the former Temple of the Jews?”
“Allah’s Spirit never inhabited that.”
“Surely you would know that such things have
“Allah is Allah, and his Spirit does not inhabit temples
“Nor does it inhabit the Dome of the Rock
“Nor the Black Stone.”
“Then why do your people bow down to it?”
“Because it is holy.”
“How can it be holy, if God’s spirit does not reside there?
“Is there anything beside God which is holy?”
At this, Muhammad raged.
“Yet, you agree with our laws!
“Is this not holy enough!”
“Yet, Muhammad, I see a great multitude
“Bowing down to a stone and not God.
“Surely, the Spirit is in your followers?”
“Allah’s Spirit would never inhabit a man!
“That is a greater blaspheme than it inhabiting the Black Stone!”
“Why, my dear, would the true religion
“Have it be more blasphemous for God
“To inhabit a man, than to inhabit a stone?
“I see now why your religion is false.
“You worship the precept
“But not the living God.”
2. The Man By the Road
A great King held a fortune
Of two mountains of gold.
Two princes were his sons.
The first prince came, and said:
Father, give me the mountains of gold
And I will give them to the poor.
The King said, “I will give you
“But you must give it all within 24 hours.”
So, the prince went and gave of his father’s fortune diligently
But had not enough time to give even a smidgen;
He diligently went to the poor
Seeing their needs
And gave away what they needed
To that exact amount;
Yet, he began to wonder about the burden of these riches.
What profit was it to have all of this?
He could not in a lifetime give all of it away.
After the twenty-four hours were up
He came to his father shamefaced.
And his father rebuked him by making him a beggar.
The second prince said,
“Father, I shall do greater with the money.”
So, the king said, “I give you the two mountains of Gold
“Get rid of it in 2 minutes.”
So, the Prince gave both mountains of gold
To a passeryonder.
A poor vagabond named Jude
Wandered behind the traveler
To see what he did with his fortunes;—
To see what he did with the moneys.
He was curious because he was so poor
And wanted to know what a man could do with such riches.
He, being very rich now
Spent it on clothes
Tattoos to praise his gods and goddesses
He spent it on mansions
Even built the Marble Palace.
Jude saw all of this,
And said, “Good heavens.
“I am poor,
“And might have been tempted to take
“Two mountains of gold in my youth.
“But now, now I know it is vanity.
“What man, giving away all his fortune
“Does good with it so carelessly?
“The first prince, he went and gave to the needy
“According to their individual needs.
“I say, a worthless religion would praise the second.”
3. The Buddha and St. Jude
Along the silk road, where time was here bent
Came two travelers where the road twice rent.
It was a king named Siddhartha, so too
A peasant named St. Jude, he so joyful
Siddhartha’s plump face slumped without renew.
Jude, he said, to the Siddhartha prince here,
“Why does your face have not but little cheer?”
Siddhartha said, “Oh, wayward traveler
“How do you know my speech? I am dark skinned
“And you must come from the Western mystique.”
“Oh, good friend, need no nonsense here to say
“I speak every language in the world,
“If God has things worthy for me to pray.”
“Oh, how I suffer, to see such dirt-poor
“To see murder, to see violence, I stand
“Where battlefields have fought for bloody tor.
“There, among the tombs, I laid where dead fell—
“I meditated, and taught myself how
“To not suffer in this living, awful hell.”
“Dear sir, you sat idly with dead hosts ’round?
“Why did you not write stories, and then give
“Your money to those so suffering crowds?”
“Oh! If I could but stop the suffering
“Of the world, I’d be gay! To march through
“Valleys, and peaks, I would to the gods pray!”
“I’ve heard of you, my good sir, your fame is
“Renowned. You teach your disciples to sit
“And ponder silly things men naught be found.
“Your religion is built on wisdom, to
“Suffer through life draught. To have compassion
“Yet, could you do more than sit idly fraught?”
At this, Buddha resisted Christ so fierce,
“I am one man! I cannot, nations, cheer!”
“Yet, my leader of the Eastern Magic
“Offended by all things claimed to be known
“You forget there are sublime pleasures here
“That is why your religion’s fruit’s not shown.”
“Then tell me, good sir, if you be so wise
“What faith do you speak, which men can’t deny?”
“Oh, simply put, men do suffer for naught
“But there are more important things to do
“Than to dwell on it so idoly fraught.
“That there are questions for philosophy
“That do make no sense. For I do here say
“How can there be an immovable thing
“And a force which cannot ever be swayed?
“For your religion ponders on this nonsense
“And other things. It is why I can’t be
“A Buddhist, among other pallid things.
“For, you say you wish to avoid being
“King? I say this is a right, solid thing.
“Yet, could you not find some thing to do with
“Time? To maybe, I don’t know… compile
“Wisdom so in time, your words can be heard?
“Then, you could pass down knowledge, to till your
“Idle herds? For a religion make’th
“Nonsense, this it breaks men like a potsherd.
“For you had to leave home, and I had to stay.
“I say my cross is more fitting, because
“I had to learn long how to be so gay.
“For I had to learn how to love my sheep
“This is why your religion, left them sleep.”
“Oh, who are you, sage so very, so wise?”
“I am St. Jude, the LORD God’s brother primed
“For a love so profound and so, so blest.
“For I am being tried in a furnace
“To bring forth pure silver to now here test.
“For I know, it cannot make me wholly
“Pure, so that is why I need a Savior
“So my heart does not become so inured.
“For that is what you do, Baalim of the East
“You teach men to suffer, but forget there are feasts.”
4. Part I: St. Jude Meets Homer
Jude, the lofty soul
Came upon a war
Where a certain lady was raped away
By the pride of Hector of Troy.
Thus, the city called Troy was sieged
By the king Menelaus.
Agamemnon, came to the war
With all of Greece.
Jude, beholden of the valiant battles—
Befallen wars outside the gates of Zion;
He entered in through a side entrance
He spied—such things do not get accessed
Jude met with his familiar friend
One of the kings whom he once had discourse.
It was Helen of Tyre, stolen of Menelaus.
“Ah! Your beauty, Helen, has caused this war?”
She gazed upon St. Jude.
“Jude, Brother of the LORD
“I see you have come to spy out another event in history
“To see its might. I see you have lost your
“Infatuation for me, like a great man
“Yet this kind is not so wise as you,
Upon Helen’s desk, lay
Manuscripts, handwritten in perfect Greek.
Next to those manuscripts lie
The manuscripts of the Jews.
“So, it is you, Helen, who writes
“Of the great conquering of the city
“Of Troy? It is your hand that inspired the Greek religion?—
“Beauty Which Always Causes War.
“For your loves are very strong,
“And those strong loves
“Lead you to foolish things.”
“Yes, St. Jude… it is I who writes
“The Blind Sage’s masterpiece.
“I, Helen of Troy
“I am Homer.”
5. Part II: Helen of Troy to Jude
Jude, watching Helen’s brother in law
Fight the mighty Achilles,
Pondered. “Helen, you would let men fight
“For your loves?”
“Why not? I am Helen of Troy.”
“Yet, men will die.
“Both the warriors you see before you,
“They will die.”
“Look upon my beauty,
“Judas Son of James.
“Gaze upon my perfect face
“My flowing brown tress
“My sharp eyes
“My perfect hips
“For bearing children.”
“I look upon you,
“Helen, and I fear
“That you, you Helen,
“Would let men die in vanity
“Just for your love.”
“Is just a schoolyard.
“On the wooden trapeze
“Men will risk their lives
“For beauty like mine.
“On the wrestling sand
“Men wrestle nude
“Just to taste my kisses.
“Men will kill stallions
“To jump them over hurdles
“Just to see my form in their beds.
“Why, Jude, does it matter to you
“If they die in battle for it, too?”
“I see… your vanity goes before you Lordess Tyrus.
“Why then write this blasphemy?”
“Why? So philosophers can see
“The vanity of the gods,—
“How they squabble over love
“Just like men,
“Your God, Jude, will be likened to one of them.
“The gods, Jude,
“Men… Jude, of which I am one
“The so called Aphrodite
“Called Eros, called Desire.”
“Then it is your vanity,
“Tyrus, that lets men die for you.”
“‘Tis not love so vain, Jude?
“Yet, this is what you desire above all things.”
“I, Aphrodite, do not desire your love.
“I desire a wife, like David had Jonathan
“As a friend, I desire her the same
“Yet, to also be joined with her
“In ways Jonathan and David never would.”
“‘Tis beautiful! Bravo!
“You’ll get your wife.”
“Yes, but not by you.
“For you, Eros,
“Are but a vain idol.”
6. St. Jude Meets an Atheist
St. Jude, sitting by the park
Fed the pigeons and enjoyed the bounty of his God.
He overheard a quarrel
In the park about Christ,
And a Christian defended his God
As best he could.
It was with a man whose god
Was Balial, the Principalities
And Powers of the air.
Thus, St. Jude listened,
Seeing the argument go through all twists and turns.
It was said, “The Fermentation of Species,
“Atoms, the Universe Was its Own Cause,
“The things of Science disprove your God,
“Morally, physically and spiritually.”
St. Jude pondered on this…
The Christian said, “Yet, what was before nothing?”
The Atheist said, “It always was.”
The Atheist, in his own mind
Had won the discussion.
St. Jude looked to the Pigeons
Seeing in them the life and breath of God.
How could the Atheist not see
The miracle right before him
Of life? The most powerful force in creation?
Why was he so deluded?
Had you ever looked into a living thing
And not seen it?
No… for he was blind;
Blind to what is life.
St. Jude went to the Christian,
Who wept for having lost a debate—
Christians always do lose those debates.
St. Jude said, “You need not quarrel
“With a man whose foundation is his own whims.”
7. St. Jude Meets a Rabbi
Upon his walks, Jude found
A village in the Amonite Kingdom.
It was a town, and in that town were Jews
Worshiping their god.
They confessed that Jesus was their God
But called Him by an unpronounceable name.
They believed other gods had power
And authority, even so believing
That these gods could be more powerful.
Jude saw them wear their captivity
‘round their necks
And Jude saw them
Abandoned by their God.
Jude witnessed and wondered.
He found the Rabbi of the town to persuade Him to Christ.
Perhaps he could shepherd his congregation
And therefore win many converts to Christ?
For it would be easy, wouldn’t it?
Jude and the Rabbi both spoke the same language?
They both worshiped the same God?
They both read the same Law?
Jude turned to the Isaiah’s Fifty-Third Psalm.
The Jewish Rabbi scoffed.
“We do not add that into our Holy Book.”
Then went to the Second Psalm of David’s.
“The Word “Son” here, it means pure.
“It does not mean Son,”
Said the Rabbi.
Jude was even more perplexed.
He took the Rabbi to Isaiah’s Seventh Psalm.
“The woman is not a virgin,
“She is a young woman.
“It talks of the captivity.”
Jude said, “Was not Christ come
“To save us from this captivity?
”And is this not what it means?
“That Christ shall break the rod
“Of the Assyrian from off our land?”
“Of course not,” said the Rabbi.
“Then, who, Rabbi, breaks the
“Yoke of Assyria from off thy shoulders?”
“Why, right here,
“It says we do
“When we believe.
“If you do not believe
“You shall surely not be established,”
Said the Rabbi.
“Believe in Who, though?”
“That the Assyrian will be beaten,”
Said the Rabbi.
“Must you not believe in Christ Jesus
“So the Assyrian is beaten?”
Jude took the Rabbi to Jeremiah’s Thirty-First
Warning. “See, there now shall be a New Covenant?
“Not that the old shall pass away,
“But that the New shall save us
“From the destructions prophesied against Israel
“Namely, the hell the Prophets warned about,
“Which is prophesied?”
The Rabbi blushed. “I do not believe in the Prophets.
“Nor do I believe in Hell.
“Only the Torah.”
Thus, Jude went to Deuteronomy’s
“Does this not occur when you break the commandment?
“How then shall justice be paid
“If you break it unto death
“With Murder, Blaspheme
“Adultery, and Disobeying the Sabbath?
“How shall mercy be extended
“To such a one who has broken the everlasting covenant?”
“I did not break the covenant.
“When did I ever disobey the Sabbath?”
Asked the Rabbi with haughty scorn.
“You did, when you believed it was
“These laws which saved you, that
“By your own vain efforts you performed them,
“And had not rested on the LORD Your God
“To save you,
“As is commanded by the Sabbath’s rest.
“Therefore, all of the branches
“Of the Olive Tree have been cut off.
”For you shall not carry your Burden of sin
“Into the LORD’s Paradise
“A place of rest.
“Has this curse not fallen on you?
“Has this curse not fallen on your people?”
“I do not see it,”
Said the Rabbi.
“No, for you are blind,
“But I, I see it.
“And what shall God do for you
“To save you from the Prophets’ words?
“To save you from this hell
“They have prophesied,
“And Moses wrote in ordinances?
“Which God has written in His commandments?
“What shall God do
“But send His only Begotten Son
“To die for you, in His Flesh
“So that you may be spared from these
“Punishments, which the Prophets
“Have decreed, and Moses had written in
At this, the rubicund Rabbi said,
“The Law is a type.
“It does not happen literally.”
To which Jude replied,
“Then why do I quarrel with a man
“Whose foundation is only himself?”
At the end of this vision, it was when Jude was killed by Judas.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brandon Neifert is the author of books including In Defense of the Story, a crowning achievement of autodidactism; My Collected Writings, a medley of various writings on diverse topics; and, The Love of Another, an epic novel starring a rowdy maverick colonel caught between a devastating, fifth world war and the love of his life. Neifert is a self-educated, self-published writer, who, much like his characters, strives for the moral best in both himself and society. A devoted Christian, Neifert was born-again when confronted with a sin from his adolescence that ultimately lead to his confession and incarceration as an adult. Neifert has a colorful past, but makes up for it with his scrupulous observations of the human condition, framing both good and evil in ways that even the most skeptical can agree.
This is Apollos, to the Churches in Asia. Greetings. I do not know whether war is necessary against you, but it seems our elected governor, put in power by good Christians, wishes to seethe a dispute with you over something that was ordained by God, and directed to bring the deceiving nations a sense of humility. For as you know there are rumors of great plagues terrorizing all the inhabitants of the world. This was by no fault of yours, I am sure, but was in fact God’s design to bring back repentant souls, and to discourage the wicked from establishing their regimes. For, there were earthquakes in Assyria, and great works wrought by God which brought the unbelieving hearts of many to Christ.
It was said by one man in particular, that it was a good deed to go to war with Babylon. He had said, “God had told me to war with Babylon.” Had God spoken to this man, he would have clearly seen in Jeremiah that it was a foul and disgusting thing to go to war with Babylon. Which, the whole world has suffered under needless wars for centuries now, but he has caused the nations to doubt whether Christ is truly the Son of God.
Doubtless, you hear rumors about Homosexuality, how it is clean and right, and that women are not forbidden by Christ to commit fornication. When, indeed, when Christ spoke of men, he spoke of women. Equally, they both bear the weight of guilt under the law, and equally, both are shareholders of the same rewards and punishments. Do not accept this heresy, as it will confuse the church, and lead to a great falling away, as is prophesied. Rather, humble those brethren who believe such things, by reminding them it is a filthy act which is committed by the sons of men, and it need not be entertained as righteous, but as an abomination and filth.
Furthermore, there are those of the Amorites who have chosen God, and have colonized the land of Moab. These have found it dutiful to restrict certain luxuries in their villages, and it is done in the name of Christ. Such abstinence ought to be observed by all, to a less radical degree. For, it is these luxuries which are causing the most deceptions.
Furthermore, if I write to you a letter, churches in Asia, I write it to tell you to obey your governors, for I have prayed fervently for a place where Christ may flourish, for His spirit is fading in all of Europe. I believe that by your swift obedience to the laws, and by your unwillingness to partake in revolts, you will sway your emperors to allow Christ to be freely preached, for no other freedom do we need. For with Christ comes all freedom, and without Christ, what is called freedom is actually a bond and restraint.
Therefore, it must be said that sheep feed on grass, and chew the cud. They do not feed on wars nor violence. Do not hesitate to reprimand officials for their crimes, for Jeremiah had done such, and was rewarded greatly by God. However, do not take up stones to hurl at brethren, for wars are not our business. Only the preservation of the Gospel. Therefore, feed on the cud, and chew on it, for if you do, you shall remain wise and satisfied by poetry and the sundry things which Christ has given you the liberty to understand. For it is wise to get wisdom, and to use it for the expediency of peace. Understand that Christ is the Word, and the unwise cannot perceive Him, therefore, pray that they are empowered by the Holy Spirit to perceive what remains holy, but hidden from their eyes. However, also know that there will be wars and rumors of wars, and we are not to violate our love for Christ by fighting. Let Moabites fight for Moab, and let Assyrians fight for Assyria. However, we shall not resist Babylon.
If you doubt that this is indeed Apollos, I have it on confidence that I have talked with Paul, and am indeed the man whom he referred to, who was called up to the Third Heaven. And what was not lawful to speak, I shall not speak. However, it was not licentiousness that God confided to me, but rather the mystery of Zion. Antichrist will say that it was licentiousness since we share a similar mind, and this shall be a subtle way to identify him when he comes. For the Spirit of God attests that Jesus Christ is come in the Flesh, therefore, He is not merely an idea or fable, but is the living, breathing God, seated in His glorified body with the Father in heaven. Amen.
A second revelation came to me today, about worldly philosophy and the such. A woman asked me, “How is there free will, if God knows our decisions beforehand?” As such questions are common among the gentiles, let me show you the answer by which we give.
Jeremiah had said that we are living clay in the hands of almighty God, and God, while shaping the clay, had fashioned us into one lump with the Law of Moses. But, the Law of Moses had marred the clay, and did not produce the behavior which God had intended for His people. Instead, the people of God acted corruptly, therefore, it was the law which marred the clump of clay. Not that God makes mistakes, for the law was intended to mar the lump, and therefore, bring every vessel under the wrath of God’s condemnation.
Yet, now God fashions us as a new lump, as Christ Jesus for our new body, and His Spirit rests upon us, and does not wiggle, like our former selves had. And in this knowledge, that the Spirit of God is upon us for our salvation, we allow ourselves to have proper glaze and delicate paint. Whereas, if we were an unworthy vessel, who still adhered to the law of Moses, or had no law whatsoever, we would be unruly lumps of living clay, moving in God’s hand and never setting still so God could keep us.
Such an answer ought to be given to the gentiles, for their questions of worldly philosophy are accounted by men’s wisdom and not God’s. We know that there is no law among the Gentiles which they uniformly follow, but instead are disorderly and warmongers. But, with the Grace and Law of God in our hearts, we ourselves are peace amidst their ever troublesome wars. For what is it that we have choice or free will? Are not these silly constructs created by men? Is there either, or neither? The answer is best left to philosophers to debate about, but in evangelistic manner, we ought to report the truth found in scripture, and not the report given by men, and their worldly traditions.
For, it is good if one tries to tell a Christian that there is good, and to reason with them thus. But, to a nonbeliever, there can be no good, nor anything evil, and telling them so, they will not understand. These will be condemned to hellfire, and mischief will be upon them, and in their hearts is to do murders and slanders and all sorts of wicked deeds. The LORD’s people said Amen.
As a third and final revelation on this day, God had explicitly made a covenant with the Jews for salvation for all people. It was the covenant of the Lamb’s blood, which the Jews had profaned, and dishonored God to His face. For the Jews’ wars were to bring peace to all nations and tribes and tongues. And the Jews rather mingled with the peoples, and behaved wickedly. Which severed their Olive Branch from Christ. What became of this, was that God had told Nehemiah to eat of the fat of the lambs, which was unlawful, and to drink the sweet, which was also unlawful. Telling the Jews to wait patiently for a New Covenant, as is prophesied by Jeremiah.
The New Covenant is the LORD Jesus Christ, and His blood to save. I testify to you that Jesus Christ is the LORD, and that when the Gentiles speak of wars fought by Israel, know it is only because they fear God’s judgment on their own soul. For, the wars speak judgment against them, and God will surely slay them with the sword. The Law condemns entire nations, and condemns even the little ones to be slaughtered in the day of wrath. For this, the Gentiles tremble at Who God is, yet God had given them arms to cry out on, and a holy branch to bear them. What the Gentiles do with it, or the Jews, is up to their discretion, yet God knows forthwith the decision, yet the decision He has given to the sons of men, and many will make decisions, and still curse the Son of God for the judgment they see measured against them. For the wicked soul cannot call upon the LORD, nor is it in their favor to do so. Therefore, leave them as a first fruit of the harvest of sin, so others can see them, and be warned about their treachery. For, we appeal to those who have a conscience, and not to those who have none. Let God distinguish who these are, but let us be wise, and thoroughly refute them to their face, so the crowds watching can be made more shrewd.
A great quarrel arose among the Peasants:
Was the man truly a prophet?
Did he write divine writ?
Did he counsel kings?
The man, at his lattice, said,
“An opinion can be prophetic
“A hope for better days divine writ
“And an act of desperation a counsel to kings.
“Did I write holy scripture?
“No… so please do not place my words with the prophets.”
The war stricken land mourned under the battle scarred
And disease laden sloughs, where thousands of men fell
In gunfire and steel. The peasants, having been uplifted by his words
Though they did not all come true
Said, “But, you had known what was to come.”
The man said, in a simple explanation…
“I had read my Bible.
“And I would advise you to read yours.
“Any man has the ability to interpret it
“But my words are chaff.
“If they brought you hope,
“Then like many other writers let them bring hope.
“But, if they brought you to worship a man as false as me
“Then throw it away from yourselves like a bloody cloth.
“I had written what politics I felt best.”
The peasants thought for a second,
Knowing now that he was not a prophet.
But, they realized he had wisdom.
So, they did not throw the books from them
But read them soberly.
Bear with me in my foolishness,
That we may find what is my sin.
I am poor, so therefore live with my brother
According to the ordinance of Leviticus 25.
I have worked the hours of a day laborer
These past ten years, but have not been recompensed for my labor.
I cry out for my labors, yet the peoples say, “He is prophesying for gain!”
I prophesy because of the labors stolen from many of the poor of my people
Who go about their tasks, but become too meek to make meat
For none will take them into their homes.
In fact, even brothers, when they see the poor are struggling
Conspire together to cast him from his home
And band together to seek his life, and to throw his soul into prison.
Yet, the people say, “The prophet preaches for gain.”
If I do, then the gain is only for you;
Do I have need of riches in great abundance?
For I want the poor to be upheld on this earth
And to eat, and drink, and be satisfied with good.
The people say,
“The prophet preached his good works
“And has given a publishing of the free will offerings.”
Have I? I have compared myself to you. Yes.
Perhaps I am a hypocrite.
I lay this to bear, that perhaps I am,
Having suffered much for the Christ
And spoken with the Apostles
And also with the Prophets.
Have I suffered like Paul?
Was I scourged? Was I cast into prison?
No, but all I love have stopped their ears from listening to my mourning
And have plotted to throw my soul into prison.
I feared continually, every day, that I would be cast onto the street, to be a vagabond,
Where I will certainly perish and die, for I am meek.
I have none to uphold me, except men who have despised my soul.
This is not the suffering of Paul, it is correct.
Rather, those I have loved and trusted have despised me;
And what I would have to liberate me from this strife
Those who despise me more and more would not liberate my sustenance from the hand of thieves.
I have been under investigation for a word;
I have been spied on for a word
And every word has been taken into account
Even my secret prayers.
They come to pass, and I say, “Who, who has done this?
“Is it not the LORD?”
And I wonder at the deep revelation that this is.
Yet, my wages are not liberated.
And war will not liberate them.
Rather, who is it that will liberate my wages from those who have robbed me?
Have I taken a loan on usury? Is this why I am being robbed?
Is there any way in which I have committed a fraud?
No more than they do who call themselves “Prudent.”
I say this, “Where is my wage? Why am I still under my brother’s roof?
“I have worked my day labor. I have given myself to work and labor,
“But now I am too wearied, and all my clothings are rags
“And I cannot but sleep, for I have no task throughout the day.
“I cannot dig, but I can offer counsel and aid to the poor.
“Where is my wage? Where is my price?
“I will use it unjustly?—is this why they try to devour my sustenance?
“Must I be with those who have despised my soul?”
The LORD said unto me,
“Do not worry, for I shall bring you the sustenance you desire
“And you will not fear the Heathen who tormented you any longer.”
I say to myself, “It will not be. Will not my soul be among the jackals,
“And my heart among the thorns forever?”
The LORD says, “Oh ye of little faith, believe, and it will be established.
“For your word is Mine, and I shall establish it in its time, will you not see it?”
I then say to the LORD, “Yes LORD, You will establish my work, but how long?”
The LORD says, “No longer will you be called despised, for the LORD has worked
“A work, and has validated your fears for the nations to tremble.
“For you have not prophesied in vain, but have established your word
“As a judgment against the nations; ask and it shall be granted.”
I would not be fearful, but would ask this,
“Let the maid give birth, and let the Assyrian be broken in this land.
“Let the thorns grow up, but Milk and Honey be eaten by your servants the Prophets
“And Apostles, those who were not hypocrites.
“Give them the desires of their heart, which is food and sustenance,
“And satisfaction with offspring, and let us feed on milk and honey
“For our lives,—and the safety our souls with good.”
The LORD says, “One more thing you must ask.”
“Then LORD, let me have the desires of my heart
“To establish Your Word throughout all generations,
“And do not cast my soul into eternal torments,
“But give me everlasting life in your Kingdom. Amen.”
Article 1: No test shall be administered in due process or in an investigation that is based on subliminal interpretations. Citizens have a right to a fair investigation that does not interpret subliminal actions which are out of a Citizen’s control, due to the possibility of false representations of such actions by authorities or court officials.
Article 2: The rights of an offender are to have public records expunged—in a compulsory act of the courts, by the courts at no fee for the defendant—the moment their punishment is over; and no public record of such criminal offenses are allowed to be kept by private or public officials or individuals, except as a matter of court records, and only for Aye or Nay that such a proceeding had happened, without injury or bias toward the defendant of a criminal justice proceeding.
Article 3: No crime is to have statutory conditions; all crimes must be arbitrated by the courts, and all penalties and duties must be arbitrated by the courts prior to sentencing.
Article 4: Police, prosecutors and investigators, as a matter of jurisprudence, cannot have access or possess records of criminality, due to the inherent bias against individuals who would hold such records. Criminal records, also, are not admissible as evidence in a court of law.
“This generation seeks me with their lips
“But not with their hearts.
“They change the prophet’s words in order to confound him
“And say, ‘he will neither notice, nor take care.’
“Who, I ask you, Who brings the sun through its course?
“Who waters the lilies, and causes the wetlands to dry up?
“Who causes the rains to fall in one place
“Upon the forests, and yet they do not bear their leafs?
“I, the LORD your God.”
I heard this and sat in wonder,
Seeing the almighty acts of the LORD
Who to this day was good to me
And has not filled my heart with sorrows.
The nations bray and burst into laughter
When they hear the awesome wonder of our God.
But, I say, it is they who are deceived.
Does not rain fall in one place
And not another?
Does not the warmth shine in one place
And not another?
Is there not cold in places where it is warm,
And warmth where it should be cold?
Do the nations truly deceive themselves
To consider that they truly understand this?
For it is the wrath of the LORD,
And no thing else
That causes my lands to dry up.
I watch, and am sore vexed
As pools of water fill the gullies
But where are the budding flowers?
Are they not in Shevat?
Why then do the nations say,
“Aha! Our idols have told us so!
“We are sore vexed, let us fix it by making the nations even more poor!”
Yet it is because of your idolatry,
And nothing else.
For your dishonoring the Sabbaths
And violating the workers’ rights.
For, one man is deathly ill
And you provoke him to come in and do his task.
Another is healthy, but he does not come into work.
One man says, “I wish to have off on the Sabbath.”
And the nation laughs him to scorn.
On your holidays, yes, even these,
All men go about their business
Buying and selling, and having no rest.
Therefore the land has no rest,
And it mourns.
Do the flowers bloom in Shevat?
Do they not sleep?
Do the little animals frolic in the winter?
Why then, do you wander to and fro
Looking for you food, and do not take wonder
At the strange thing the LORD has done?
For you wish to place Baal at every street corner.
Must I be like a diviner
And tell you what is not true?
Tell you strange enchantments to get you to listen?
Must I talk to the flowers
And pretend like they listen?
No, for the LORD has told me.
He is sore wroth at this generation
Who has not the rest of the LORD.
To and fro they go,
Therefore, the forests are become a desert.
And the deserts a forest.
The peoples who have not known His name
Shall know it, and the peoples who honor Him
With their lips shall stop taking the name of the LORD on them.
For they are deceitful.
Do not the nations know that the LORD is God?
Yes, they do know, but they stiffen their necks.
Who is it, I ask you, that brings the rains?
Who brings the circle of the earth to bear
And brings light in due season
And shuts up the light in due season?
Is it not the LORD Who created man and the earth?
Why then are you so mad?
Why do you drive your wagons to and fro
Going place to place
Roaring like a lion fed in the wildernesses?
This people dishonors their God
And they take the name of the LORD falsely
Upon their lips.
This prophet shall be at rest.
He shall eat, shall he not?
And even if it is not so,
He shall rest, knowing the wrath of the LORD
Is upon this nation, and he will sleep
And know that the LORD is God.
The evidence is all around you
Why do you not look?
Did you seek God?
Is this why you said, “I cannot see Him.”
Is this why you offer incense to that shameful thing Baal?
“Come together, and let us reason,
“Though you sins were red as scarlet
“Yet will I make them white as snow.”
Yet, men said to themselves,
“My sins are not scarlet
“They are mine, and mine to bear.”
Therefore, you must bear them
Shameful nation of the Philistines.
Had not the LORD spoken
Yet the prophet sealed the vision?
It was sealed for your hardheartedness
Yet none speak the Words of the LORD
Which are loving-kindness to the generations that seek Him. Selah.
Therefore, repent, and throw from yourselves the idols you carry.
Throw them into the waters,
Like the priests of Rome.
For even they, whom the whole world scorns
Know the LORD is awesome and mighty.
They fear Him, whom Israel says, “These are sinners worse than us.”
Are they Israel? Is not Judah suffering from an unrighteous king
And yet the priests perform the rituals, and they throw away the abominations?
They live poor, and they minister like workers to cleans the sinners?
What does Israel do, but call the police on the innocent man for a word?
What does Israel do, but band together and stiffen their necks against the prophets?
Yet, I say to you, greater woes come if there is no rest.
This prophet will return to his LORD with an ill report about this generation
Who had not liberated him,
But rather loved to have him poor.
“How have we not liberated him?”
By words accountable, you had not laid accusations
Against the government that did this.
Which professes “Freedom” when there is none.
For this, you band together with arms
Which is just what Satan wanted!
No, I say, repent, in dust and ashes.
You grow worse with every folly
And you grow more cold with every sin.
Rather, a man’s work is to be eaten from
And where is this prophet’s work?
It is spoiled by Jackals
And you all know just who they are.
Yet you say, “Let us fight!”
No… For then you will lose.
The Assyrian will be broken by the sword
And by the exorcise of laws.
Yet, my people would not have it.
Therefore, this prophet will rest.
What will you do?
Continue to go to and fro
Eating and drinking,
Marrying wives and blessing children.
Mixed wine is in your cups.
Therefore, the nations who have not known the LORD
They shall seek Him and they shall find Him.
Woe to the generation who rejected the LORD their God
Mighty to save and compassionate to a thousand generations.
Was not my command to you that you be charitable?
Yet, you say, “Charity is weak.”
Is charity weak? Is it an abomination
To give to those less fortunate than you?
Must you, in your vanities
Perform the service of healing,
Yet heal it superficially?
The daughter was violated
Yet you say to her, “Be still, for it is of none affect.”
The man was falsely accused,
Yet you say to him, “It will be alright. Be at peace.”
Yet, with what little abundance they had
They gave to the poor, therefore they will be at rest.
What of you, nation of hypocrites?
Your offerings were to the priests
But what of the poor?
The poor you cast off your stoops.
The poor you called “Degenerate”
Must I prophesy to you?
Is Esdras in your holy scripture?
Is there not prophecy in it?
Is there not prophecies all around you
To testify the power of the LORD Almighty God?
Does not God show Himself through these things?
How you judge a prophet for a little error of wording
Yet you, by your great abundant hypocrisies
Speak foolishness to thousands?
You tell them, “God loves the powerful one.”
You tell them, “God is with the one whose arm has brought him all things.”
Yet, to the poor digging through your garbage you say,
“Get away! Even our garbage is too sacred for you beggars.”
When will this generation learn?
Did not the prophet set examples for you?
When to follow laws,
And when not to?
When to give, and what to give
And how did he give of his sustenance what he could afford?
You call him lazy, yet he works every day
Silently finding the truth, seeking his God
Finding wisdom, and telling it to you?
If he has one fault
And LORD knows what it is,
What faults do you have?
If he has spoken falsehood
It shall fall upon his head,
Yet why do you listen to him
Secretly in his bedchambers?
Is this the light of God?
To spy upon the innocent
And lay to bear his every word
Like you yourselves were God?
For the nations are filled with wrath
And the poor man is still not fed.
Was there not one commandment given to you
Above the rest? Who clothed Christ? Who fed Christ?
Who visited Christ in Prison? Who healed Christ when he was sick?
Who had comforting words for Christ? Was it any of you?
Yet you call yourselves greater than this man who speaks to you,
Who did all these things.
You call him a liar for speaking words in utterance hastily.
While you bring it to pass.
Hypocrites. Idolaters. Thieves. Jackals. Serpents.
These words mean nothing to you
Therefore, a new generation will serve the Almighty
And you will altogether go to the pits.
Everything Under the Pen Name “B. K. Neifert”
- Ekphrastic Motabilem – Detailing the process of creating a work of art, or describing the process of skilled work. More specifically, utilizing Ekphrasis through describing the art form or skilled work in its process. Otherwise called “Ekphrasis”, but more technically called Ekphrastic Motabilem.
1. Example: Jeremiah 18:4 “And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.”
2. Example: “Go, Ploughman, Plough” By Joseph Campbell
2. Hyperloxy or pl. Hyperloxa – An oxymoron expressed through hyperbole, to especially emphasize the last statement and make it stronger than the previous statement, which otherwise should be stronger.
1. Example: “He is not very wise, but has an unrivaled wit.”
3. A Vulgar – When taking something that usually isn’t vulgar, or even taking a Euphemism, and making it vulgar through tone.
1. Example: From Wordsworth’s “Transubstantiation”: “And, while the Host is raised, its elevation/ An awe and supernatural horror breeds,”
4. Cantor – When a work breaks into a text with a voice dissimilar to the one established throughout the work, intentionally or unintentionally. Especially where it can be readily noticed. Derived from the word “Cantor” a responsive hymn, where the solo is the break in voice, and the choir is the established voice.
- Example: The Gospel of John as opposed to the Synoptic Gospels.
- Example: The Egyptian Maid or White Doe of Rylstone by Wordsworth, as opposed to the rest of his body of Work, reflects stories in the forms of Southey or Coleridge.
- Example: The Last few segments of The Riddle in the Sea, by B. K. Neifert, where the form breaks to create an added effect of suspense.
- Example: The use of “Mirkwood” in Tolkien’s The Fall of Arthrur.
More will be added to this list, as I discover them.
LORD, to where do I turn?
LORD, to where do I turn?
Do I turn to the north?
Will my help come from there?
Do I turn to the south?
Do I turn to the king?
Do I turn to the earth?
What is underneath the earth?
From where does my help come?
Idols do not set before my eyes
I have heard your voice
Idols do not set before my eyes
And I, LORD, I am a listener ready to listen
I am a sheep ready to be set down
In the pasture.
Where does my help come?
Surely all other gods are wolves
Ready to steal
Surely all other gods deceive
And surely they say, “Do some little bit of evil
“So that your will comes to pass.
“Love your life so much
“That you will do this little evil
“And your desire shall surely shine forth like the morning star.”
Yet, LORD, if there is error in my heart
If in my way are stumbling-blocks
Surely You shall remove them.
Why do I, LORD, why do I excel above other men?
Am I something which men look to and say
“This man is my example.”
Surely not, LORD, for You are the example
You are the path set before our feet.
If all else follow after vain idols
I shall surely stay steadfast in Your love.
For where does my heart lean?
If there is a company against me
I shall call upon you early
I shall, before the war
Constantly speak into your ear.
Who are the men who trouble the meek?
Who are those who cause trouble for your servant Israel?
Surely they shall be set forth ablaze
And shall burn for eternity in hell.
Yet, I, I shall listen and wait upon You.
For my salvation is like a wellspring
And my heart a steadfast servant.
Though the company does not believe my words
Though they say, “He lies, there is nothing good in him,”
Though they wait for my feet to stumble
And though they make a diligent watch for sin
LORD return upon their own heads their mischief.
For dreams they accuse Your servant
While they walk forth in slander and murder all the day long.
How long shall the wicked prosper?
Surely you shall not let your servant see decay.
Literary Analysis of Beowulf, Particularly Answering the Question of Whether Beowulf is a Hero.
Is Beowulf a hero or conceited nobody? One has to understand the time period Beowulf was invented. At that time, heroism was personal glory. That’s the whole sum of pagan culture is that glory is everything. And, Beowulf was not “fighting for his glory”. He was fighting to bring peace between the Danes and the Geats. He extended a hand to the Danes who once were at war with the Geats by slaying Grendel and Grendel’s Mother.
To observe whether he was or was not conceited requires one to observe a motif on the vitality of Youth. Beowulf is expected to be a glory seeker in his youth, but in adulthood, he recognizes he is no longer strong. And, this is foretold throughout the entire poem, with its theme of fate and the overall fate of Beowulf, which is to be killed in battle with the Wyrm. Beowulf knows he’ll be defeated, and in this is a sort of humility.
What could be called conceit, to take on one’s professor at school, or whoever is telling one to make Beowulf a conceited cock, Beowulf fights Grendel with his bare hands, and this is unusual in our culture with our faith in weapons and technology. Why wouldn’t he use a sword? But serendipitous, perhaps even foreknown, to Beowulf—because had he used a sword, weapons couldn’t penetrate Grendel’s flesh; thus, he’d have been defeated—Beowulf won the day simply because he used his bare hands.
We can assume he’s had experience with monsters of this kind. But, he does takes a sword into battle with Grendel’s Mother, but of course it fails him. So, one could call Beowulf’s fighting hand to hand conceit here, but is it really when weapons will fail against these kinds of monsters?
And, to contrast what that culture deemed as “Conceited” we have a perfect example in Unferth’s behavior toward Beowulf, who sits in the Mead-Hall and questions Beowulf’s heroism and tries to tout his (Unferth’s) own abilities. But, Unferth is afraid of Grendel, so here we have true conceit. Unferth is afraid to fight Grendel, but he’s also going to belittle Beowulf to his face to try and diminish his (Beowulf’s) capabilities. And Unferth does this by mentioning a swimming match Beowulf lost. And, of course, from my memory, Beowulf did lose the match, but of course, he took down two dozen sea monsters in the process. And, seeing that Beowulf does slay Grendel and Grendel’s Mother, there is no reason to question in this Universe of Discourse that such a thing is possible.
The idea that Beowulf was conceited is just modern idiocy and English culture bashing. Beowulf’s whole culture would be “Conceited” by our standards, and the fact is that Beowulf was the least “Conceited” of that whole group of people. He risked his life to slay a demon. And, this motif in the story that the demonic is more dangerous than men, proven by the fact that Grendel was a demon that Beowulf slew to make peace, and only Beowulf could slay him, proves that the author is trying to say that winning battles with the Demonic through the strength of Christ is more heroic than battles with men, which are often talked about but not glorified in the text anywhere that I can see. He got gold, yes, but that was not a symbol of conceit; it was a symbol of diplomacy. The gold given to Beowulf was a sign between the Danes and Geats of friendship.
One cannot, in any rational way, call Beowulf conceited. It’s impossible. To do so is to view him from a western standard, and it’s revisionism. In the movie, maybe he’s conceited because movies are banal. But in the book, he’s all hero. He dies serving his people in an epic battle with the Wyrm. That’s Satan, just to let one know what the probable metaphor is there. Beowulf even sheds his pride by going into battle with his servant by his side. If one’s teacher wants one to write an essay on why “Beowulf is conceited” then drop that course, and find a true lover of English literature. That’s simply not true; it’s a flawed analysis and its culturally neglectful.
If Beowulf were conceited, it’s in the fact that he wants to obtain glory for himself, but that’s the pagan culture he grew up in, and the ways he obtained glory were by struggling with the demonic. It’s a motif written by a Christian Monk trying to tell a group of people to stop killing each other and focus on Christ by struggling with the demonic and not fighting amongst each other. That’s hardly conceited, and the most glory comes, according to the crux of Beowulf, from the most triumphant victory over the demonic. And, of course, Beowulf always asks God, Jesus, to help him slay that beast.
And before one thumbs their nose at me for bringing up Christianity, let me point out to one that the book was written by a Christian monk in order to teach people Christian values in a culture that was completely secular. This is not disputed. What is disputed is, of course, whether Beowulf was conceited. And, of course the world wants him to be because we have this incessant need to vilify heroes in modern day. So, keep that in mind.
As one brought up some interesting points after reading this essay, and perhaps one can benefit from this:
There are three main devices I usually see. There’s the battles, which are the main device, of course. There’s the retelling of battles which shouldn’t be confused with the boasts; then there’s sharing gold. Two secondary devices are the retelling of history and then one has the three boasts.
The main device is of course the battles, which are there to reinforce the motif of diplomacy, struggling against the demonic, and this reinforces the gold sharing as something more than just sharing gold. It’s a diplomatic action and symbolizes the new bond between the Geats and the Danes. The retelling of battles is just what people do in the Mead-hall. It’s historically always been that way, and if one goes to a bar today, things aren’t much different. There’s the Beowulf, telling his mighty deeds, and then there’s the Unferth, that annoying guy trying to discredit Beowulf. People like to tell their exploits. Everyone has their stories of heroism, and Beowulf of course has his, and rightly so.
Then we get to the other two devices. The retelling of history is normally where we find the poem’s disdain for human violence. We see battles, kings being killed in battle, a lot of inglorious things happen in these historical events. And, the tone takes a rather disapproving gesture toward these wars with men, and it kind of hints at saying “Why aren’t we fighting against the Grendel of the world, but are still fighting men? There is no glory in killing men because men are weak, they are easy and they are inglorious to kill.” Then we have the boasts. And, somehow people get here and say, “Aha! Beowulf is awful, and conceited, and he has all of these great things to say about himself.” I say one does that same thing when one creates a job resume. Beowulf’s boasts are his proof to Hrothgar that he can get the job done. It’s not this conceited thing; it’s Beowulf simply trying to get the opportunity to fight against a strong foe.
Some themes are of course Glory and Honor, but these are put toward diplomacy, struggling against the demonic through Christ, being faithful, being a righteous leader… the glory is never, once, directed at secular things. It’s always there to elevate some form of idea relating to Christian morality. Justice, Peace, Friendship, Bravery in the face of wickedness (Which is very Christian).
And, that’s what I have to say. Also, Beowulf’s confidence was “Conviction” not “Convention” or “Conceit.” Beowulf believed he could fight this battle, and Beowulf won because of his great faith.
“Am I Insane?” An Analysis of Maupassant
It seems like anything I’d say about this work would ruin the beauty of it. However, some mental notes were that the woman’s revived desire was renewed by the horse, but the jealousy of the man led him to murder.
I suppose the work is meant to capture an image of the passion called love; but also, I’d argue, it hints at an ideal. The woman loved her horse, and the man felt jealous of that love. Should he have loved the woman, I suppose the poem forces you to consider whether he would have been happy for her revived desire, since the root of the problem wasn’t an affair.
His description of the woman made her very relatable. Very desirable, however, the poem seems to try and insinuate the revived desire is with a man, until the end when the notion is dismissed with totality. When, it turns out to be a horse who has revived her desire.
The thought that ran through my mind was this: that if the woman were truly loved, this interest, this passion, would be shared. It wouldn’t be something to incite jealousy.
The woman was martyred for having a renewed passion.
The tendency is in men to do this. The internal narrative of the story is the strained relationship between a man and his partner. The jealousy aroused is a passion of dominance; to be her waking passion morn and eve.
When he’s not her object of total adoration, he goes crazy. So, the poem describes the feeling of a strained relationship, how it seems to make one crazy. Yet this work is supremely beautiful for its rendition, with moral shades to the text: that if he actually loved the woman, perhaps he would have taken another course of action. Seeing the renewed sense of life would have made him joyous and not callous. That was the sensation I received from the prose, was a moral bearing the insanity of a man who wishes to dominate his partner in everything. So, the wife’s joys are sucked from her. It is a relevant discourse, as true love would create a response of affection for any renewed interest because true love wishes to see its beloved happy.
Some notes about Maupassant, I think his naturalist persona was a cover for success. The poems, although usually very cruel, do have a moral shade to them, despite the so called “Pessimism.” This piece affirms the female Libido, and the revival of passion through a healthy cathexis. It then turns to a moral rebuke of the man, by having him internally monologue, “Am I insane?”, insinuating to the reader that he is not insane, maybe, but that maybe he is bitter with jealousy, an emotion we all have felt. The relatability of this passion, for anyone who’s had a partner who showed considerable disinterest in them, is perhaps what shades the text with its insidious interpretation. Perhaps the reader draws too much sympathy to the narrator.
However, there is a moral to draw for someone feeling similar emotions. There is a brightness in the female character. A trueness. A revival of the female libido, which, ought to be shared by the husband/boyfriend, because true love would share its joy with the beloved. So, perhaps the poem scathes the jealousy, which is murderous. An emotion many have felt, if they’re honest. An emotion many have been troubled with, if they’re honest. Because I don’t believe the moral tone could do anything more than offer a remedy to the jealousy. It seems to reaffirm love, by showing love’s complete opposite. As, I tend to empathize with the woman and not the man.
I will not recant my analysis, as I find it is a good analysis.
Maupassant, Guy. The Tales of Maupassant. Illustrated by Gunter Böhmer. The 100 Greatest Books Ever Written Collector’s Edition Bound in Genuine Leather. Easton Press, 1977.
There was once a man, Who committed many crimes. He committed Rape, Robbery, Murder, Kidnapping;--- He possessed a fortune from trafficking drugs. He found his way into political office. He was also happier than any man ever could be. There was another man Who was impoverished And did not steal, He did not purchase opium, He did not rob or malign anyone, He did not extort anyone, or threaten anyone. He rather stood upon the stoops of the cornerstreets And begged for his daily bread. Why? Because it was good. But he was sorely unhappy. In our modern world, The first man skates through life And prospers, And if there were no God Such a man would have filled his plate with good measure And been happy his entire life for doing evil. And such men exist. The second man, he does what is noble And he suffers, And if there were not God Such a man would have suffered it all in vain, To have been unhappy for doing what is right. Yet, our consciences all laud the man Who did good, not seeking any rewards. Our consciences hate the man Who did evil, and sought a reward under every oak. With that said, It's this in mind that lets me know God exists For if a world were to exist Where both men were judged so With no eternal reward, First thing that would occur is hell on earth. Second thing that would occur Is that man would soon forget his conscience And do what is evil, so he could benefit. And this happens. Very often. It is why I will believe in a God. Bad men need to be judged And good men need to be given mercy. If not in this life, Then in the afterlife.
So, David had sowed a seed---a king, And that King was Solomon. So did Satan once sow a seed,--- And that seed was Death. By the rape of Bathsheba Came into the world Solomon. By the rape of Scylla Came into the world Death. Why does God choose one man And another man He hates? All do their crimes,--- Yet one is destined to heaven But the other is destined for hell. It is an offensive thing, This cross. Great offense That two men, having lived one life One could be sent to paradise; The other sent to hell. I suppose that is the very breadth of it. Two men, exactly the same, One finds God While the other, he will not. What divine messenger spreads God's Word, It is to one eternal life So to another it is eternal damnation. What separates the two, in All likelihood, Is the beating heart. Two men live perfectly symmetrical lives, All which determines grace or gory pain: It is that beating thing beneath our chest. Keep it good, unstained, Though one had done what David had done, One will still see eternal life.
I stood, with the heavens on my shoulder. If I could get a man to look up The earth should be saved. However, I had committed offenses Against man, and as the preacher Does, I held above me the pillars of the earth. The mountainous daggers above me The sinner's abyss below me. I, I stood with the heavens upon my shoulder. "Look up! Look up! There is a God, "There are His angels, and His Cherubim "And his Seraphim, and His Archangels, "And Messengers, and His Nethanim, "And Cherubs, and those sleeping in the grave. "There is a world beyond our own. "If you'd just look up, "And unburden the heavens from my shoulder "And hold them with me "The earth might be saved." The men stood, saying, "There are no heavens. "There is only the earth. "The stars are falling, "Be we do not perceive them. "The heavens are shaking, "But we do not want them to be. "Terrible misfortune has come upon us all "Yet we, we wish to live like we always had. "Believing in great mysteries about ourselves. "For we are too preoccupied with the things of this world "To even look up, and see the stars have fallen. "To even look out, and see the seas are raging "Over their perpetual bounds." I looked upon them. "Men, men, countrymen, "Do you not see that I alone bear the pillars of the Earth? "Do you not see that I alone bear the heavens on my shoulder? "You have taken the Gorgon's head "And have petrified me. "For I can but stand, and ache, and stiffen my nape "Against an unwise generation as yourselves. "You do not see the disasters among you, "You deny the glorious reward on high? "What, what do you seek? "If I alone bear the heavens on my shoulder, "And you do not look up, "It will come crashing down on all flesh, "And I will but be a grain of sand "Weighed in the measure. "It would all fail, "And I will be dead, and you so with me." They say then, "The sky is falling, says the preacher. "Has he not always said this "From days of old? "Has the sky fallen? "No, I say it hasn't." To wit, the preacher gave one last breath One last desperate straight of his back And bore those heavens strong. Then, he collapsed under the weight of the heavens. The men stood in awe, "Has the Christian Preacher fallen under "The weight of his own prophecies? "None of his ill foreboding came true." There came a voice thunderous from heaven, "Love has departed from the earth. "Men, seeking to be like the beasts "Have succumbed to their primordial pleasures. "Thus, your own hell will be by your own hands "That none, for a thousand generations, "Shall know what love is, "Or know what it is to have peace. "None shall know what it is to have joy "Or even know that there is a God. "This preacher has come to be with good men "And gracious women, "Who have all suffered, "But none so bad as the tyranny "Man had created when he said to God, "'Depart, I never knew you.' "Man wishes for God to depart, "God shall depart, and all the good things "With Him, while this preacher sleeps, "And shares in conjugal vows with his Creator."
I worship God because of what He said war ought to be. It would keep people from starting them, If those verses were followed through to their T.
I've heard a Pedant Snob say it's the part you play. "It is not," I said, "Ethos is your inner-borne "Character, and nothing else."
There are three kinds of lies: Lies, Damned Lies And Statistics."
My thoughts after seeing a U-Penn study that inferred people are less racist under Trump. It’s also my thought when people say how peaceful modernity is. How there are less genocides. Currently, there are four happening around the world. One in the Middle East, one in China, one in South Africa and another in Myanmar. In Myanmar the estimated number of dead are around 9,000,000. In the Middle East, uncountable numbers of Christians have been slaughtered, numbering in the probable millions. In South Africa, probably hundreds of thousands. And in China, numbers uncountable. Then there’s the stuff about crime statistics being low. There are riots in every major city, but the statistics on crime, as quoted by liberal pundits, have actually remained the same. There was also less police funding, therefore, less investigations into the crime, which means less charges. Then there’s the idea that war is happening less. There are countless going on right now, in every continent except North America and Antarctica.
The Shadow Jinn, with the blackened scales in hand Weighs the copper, silver, gold; he gives and takes. Whom he bestows glory upon That man is rich, famous and honored. Whom he withholds the grains of copper and gold That man is obscure, and will die. He controls all prosperity upon the Earth, With the face of an old man and golden grill. He is pale like the ashen remnants of fire, And he is cold as the chilly February ice. He bestows fortune upon whom he entrusts it, And he withholds fortune upon whom he will not. There is a story, old as the ancient days That an Angel of great might will bind him In a prison for one thousand years. At that time, the scales will be in the hand Of the just---for this Jinn controlled the world For a time. And it is he who makes man destitute. It is he who caused all the suffering in the world.