Titles don’t give breakfasts always.  Masters there are that are hungrier than servants in name.  The Prodigal Son learned that lesson in a hard way.  Severely punished by his impetuous haste for independence in a Far Country from home, he confessed his shame.  His father’s “many” servants had “bread enough and to spare,” whereas he, master of his own means in a Far Country, cried, “I perish with hunger!” (Luke 15:17).  Titles don’t give breakfast.  He would rather be a fed and happy servant at home than a hungry and haggard heir and master begging pigs for a bite . His senses had returned.

We should measure some boasts not so much by their flamboyant titles as by how much bread they have and to spare.  Mind titles that give no bread, especially titles that take your bread.

From The Preacher’s diary,
January 8, 2019.


That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear. 

Luke 1:74.

  1. Something Strange 

There’s something strange about this verse; something that I never saw until now. Every proper person has two hands, and when we speak of multiple people, we speak also of multiple hands.  However, this verse speaks of the singular “hand” of plural “enemies.”  If that ‘natural error’ were only in this verse, one might have ignored it, but it occurs also in a previous verse, verse 71: “That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us” (Luke 1:74).

“All” means more than one, and that is plural, so is “enemies.”  According to this prophecy, however (for this prayer is called a prophecy in verse 67), “all” the “enemies” have a singular “hand” – one “hand” that holds down all of “us,” many as we are.  That takes me to another concern: can an entire community of goodly priests, according to Zechariah, be under captivity to a single wicked “hand”?

Sometimes, the one “hand” against which we strongly contend could be merely the one visible agency of many invisible “enemies.”  In other words, some of the battles we face transcend the singular “hand” that we see, feel, touch, hear.  To focus on that singular hand could sometimes be a tragic distraction.

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