Pastor Mark Holmes
The Venus flytrap is a flower that reverses the common food chain. It is a plant that eats flesh. It grows closable pads that excrete a sugary nectar to bait its victims. When an unsuspecting insect lands to enjoy a snack, the pads snap shut, capturing its prey, beginning the digestive process. This unusual behavior presents a challenge to the longevity of the plant. Like most vegetation, the flytrap must undergo pollination. But if it eats all the insects that visit it, fertilization would be impossible.
Abraham Lincoln once remarked regarding a minister, “I like Gurley. He don’t preach politics. I get enough of that through the week, and when I go to church, I like to hear the gospel.” Considering the turbulent times we are going through, I believe many of us feel the same way as Lincoln.
Philo, a Jewish philosopher born in 20 B.C., wrestled with the question of who God was speaking to when He said, “Let us make man in our own image” (Genesis 1:26). Because the concept of the Trinity was yet unheard of, Philo believed God was talking to heavenly entities, such as angels, He had created in heaven. For Philo, including these limited entities in the creation process, explained why evil is found in mankind.
In August 1809, William Leavenworth Jr. was brought before the Superior Court of Litchfield County, Conn. on charges he willfully and publically blasphemed against God. The punishment for such a crime was to receive upwards to 40 lashes upon a bare back, followed by an hour of public display in the town square. Fortunately, Leavenworth was acquitted and set free. The idea of being tried for blaspheme may seem bizarre by modern standards.