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Relevant Thoughts In Verse

by Tom Graffagnino

"Road to Jericho"


"No Fear Education"


"The Game of Evasion"

"Hosea's Field"

"The Feast"

new.gif (1236 bytes)"The Mirror"

 " In reply Jesus said: ‘A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when
he fell into the hands of robbers.   They stripped him of his clothes, beat
him and went away, leaving him half dead........But a Samaritan came where the
man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him.  He bandaged his wounds,
pouring on oil and wine.  Then he put the man on  his own donkey, took him to
an inn and took care of him.'     (Luke 10: 30...34)

         "Road to Jericho"

By this world we've been blinded...
    Our Faith?  Double-minded.
    And like Creech, we've "bought into" the Lie.
Dear Lord, help us hear,
    Your  Word that is clear.
     Forgive us, we pray.....Hear our cry!

Lord, your path we've been leaving,
    In false gods we're believing,
    Church "leaders" often paving the way.
But we, too, share the blame.
     Help us Lord, in our shame!
     Give us Faith to trust and obey.

Lord, your church is half dead...
     Down this path we've been led,
     To be ambushed by robbers and thieves.
We're ensnared by the net,
    That the fowler has set.
Dear God, put us back on our knees!

You offer us healing,
     Through the Truth you're revealing,
     Our way is a path with no light.
We've wandered and strayed....
     By our own rules we've played;
     Now we've stumbled like fools in the night!

The Broad way is appealing....
     It appeals to our "feelings"....
     It glitters and dazzles the eyes.
It promises riches,
     But leads into ditches....
     It's the path to the "Lord of the Flies".

The "world's way" we're defending,
     (There's no use in pretending...)
     With no Light we lie broken and bruised.
Turn us, Lord!....Help us climb,
     From this ditch for the blind.
Pour the Oil that before we've refused.

The church of today,
     Walks the "Jericho Way"....
     A dark path that is always descending.
Light and Truth's from above,
     .....And You  beckon with Love,
     To the City of God.....Never Ending.

Lord, you sent us your Son,
     To this road where we run,
     Which leads to the Sea known as "Dead".
Tell me why we decline,
     The Oil and the Wine,
     Choosing death and destruction instead?

Heaven's Manna you've offered,
     The Bread of Life you have proffered,
     Wine and Oil you have mercifully sent.
By this road, we lie broken....
      Help us hear your Word spoken....
      Teach us, Lord, to turn and repent.

By our Pride we've been blinded,
     By these thieves we're reminded,
     That this path is the way of the lost.
Yet your Love, Lord, is tender....
     Give us Grace to surrender,
     To your arms that reach out from the Cross.

    "Your word is a lamp to my feet
        and a light for my path."

                                             (Psalm 119: 105)

"He who dwells in the shelter of the
     Most High
will rest in the shadow of the
I will say of the Lord, "He is my
     refuge and my fortress,
    my God in whom I trust."
Surely he will save you from the
    fowler's snare....."
                                  (Psalm 91: 1-3a)


  "Ahaz...unlike his father David...did not do what was right in the eyes of
the Lord his God.  He...sacrificed his son in the fire, following the
detestable ways of the nations the Lord had driven out before the Israelites.
He offered the high places, on the hilltops and under every
spreading tree."
          (2Kings 16: 2...4)

     "They worshipped other gods....They forsook all the commands of the Lord
their God and made for themselves idols.....They bowed down to all the starry
hosts and they worshipped Ba'al.  They sacrificed their sons and daughters in
the fire.  They practiced divination and sorcery...."
          (2Kings 17: 7,...16...17a)

We know child sacrifice,
     Is a most ghastly vice....
     Such a sinister deed we abhor.
We're sickened to learn,
     Of cultures that burned,
     Their young to appease gods galore.

In the world of Isaiah,
     Jeremiah, Hosea,.....
     In a land known as Canaan we've learned,
     Pagan priests lit the fires,
     That became funeral pyres,
     Where babies (mere infants!) were burned.

When the gods were not pleased,
     Man's conscience was eased,
     By appeasing the deities' ire.
So "the goddess" directed,
     That the young be selected,
     To pay for their sins in the fire.

This unholy perversion,
     And wicked diversion,
     Is recorded for those who will check.
Lives of babies denied....
     Tender flesh.....simply fried,
     In the sizzling arms of Molech.

This assuaging of guilt,
     By this blood being spilt,
     Might seem to us cruel and obscene.
But it's true.....there are traces,
     Of these pagan "high places".
(And I don't bring it up to be mean.)

Now the years have gone by,
     And the children still die,
     In a nightmare of death that's no dream.
We live in a nation,
     Where "live infant cremation",
     Is protected by law, so it seems.

Listen carefully, dear,
     And I'm sure you will hear,
     That the goddesses' voice is not stilled.
Our guilt is the same,
     In this hideous game.....
     By the millions the babies are killed.

Now the idols we trust,
     Are Convenience and Lust,
     And the "fertility goddess" of Pleasure.
And the flame of the fire,
     Reaches higher and higher.
At what cost? .......
      Oh. Lord,.....who can measure?

Our modern-day "flame",
     Doesn't burn quite the same,
     As Eros, our goddess, is courted.
We try self-absolution,
     With a saline solution....
"Tissue masses"?  Discreetly aborted.

In this new pagan nation,
     Sacrificial locations,
     Are in offices, sterile and neat....
Where "burned" children are placed,
     In a bucket of waste........
The unholy communion's complete.

The "high priest" scrubbed in white,
     Is very polite,
     Speaking words of compassion and tact.
He then "delivers" the child.....
     (As  Molech just smiles.....)
     To the dumpster overflowing in back.

So, it seems we still hail,
     Both Ashtar and Ba'al,
     Though we claim we're more "highly evolved".
But the blood that's been spilt,
     Shows our true Moral Guilt.
It's a crime only God could absolve.

But, of course, Lord, You've done it!
     The vict'ry....You've won it!
     Through the work of your Son whom You sent.
For our Sin He has died....
     (From that truth we still hide!)
Give us Faith and the Grace to Repent!

Dear God, help me  grow.....
     Help us, Father, to know ,
     Of this sacrifice you, Lord, have made.
Your mercy's astounding.
Your Grace is abounding....
     ‘Twas my debt that you willingly paid!

Lord, You gave us Free Will.
     In our hearts you've instilled,
     A knowledge of wrong and of  right.....
Dear God, you're Pro-Choice!
     Help us choose the right voice
     To follow ......your Love and your Light.

     "When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his
sheep follow him because they know his voice."    
                                                                              (John 10: 4)

     "If I am a creation of God, then life must be deemed sacred.   But if I am
the product of pure chance, the body may be profaned, for life itself is
---Ravi Zacharias

     "There comes a time in the afternoon when the child is tired of
‘pretending'; when he is weary of being a robber or a red Indian.  It is then
that he torments the cat....Men seek stranger sins or more startling
obscenities as stimulants to their jaded sense.  They seek after mad oriental
religions for the same reason.  They try to stab their nerves to life, if it
were with the knives of the Priests of Ba'al."
----GK Chesterton

     "The ultimate test of any civilization is what we do with our children."
---Ravi Zacharias

     "No Fear Education"

There are many who say
     That the Bible today,
      Is ‘old fashioned'
     And couldn't be true.
A collection of tales,
     Of blood, floods and whales,
     That was written by men with ‘no clue'.

Just a weird book of fable....
     It's writers?  Unstable.
     (And things have all changed.)
We've no need for a story,
     That's so bloody and gory,
     Which was penned by some guys,
     Quite deranged.

We need facts that are real,...
     That we can measure and "feel".
     (Give us nebulae, black holes and quarks.)
No more mythical stories,
     And vague allegories,
     With "miracles", crosses and Arks.

We've moved way beyond those.....
     (And our wisdom still grows!)
     Soon all of our woes will be solved....
And the world we can save!
     Mankind?  Well-behaved!
    (Ain't it swell to be highly evolved?)

If we could just see,
     How good we can be,
     Then this world would be nifty and keen.
No more war or starvation.
     The "Fix"?.....Education!
     Just teach children how not to be mean!

You see, school should be fun-----
     ("Make Nice 101")
     Where each one is part of "The Team".
All A's?  We'll give freely......
     Our goal?  (Not Truth)......Self-Esteem.

In these schools where all's fun,
     Where each child's "Number 1",
     We'll mold minds of the next generation.
They'll be Proud....Standing Tall!
     Pumped up and installed,
     With confident "Ego-Inflation".

We'll rebuild this tired nation,
     Teaching "Pride Education",
     To the children in grades K through 4.
We must touch them while small,
     So the seed of Pride falls,
     In a soil that's unspoiled at the core.

We must reach the kids fast,
     Or The Word from the past,
     Might scuttle this scheme we've devised.
Just don't let them hear it!
     ("Blest are those poor in spirit...")
    Hearing some things is just ill-advised!

We'll push cyberspace/ lasers,
     (Also "crystals" / stargazers)
     Meditation and yoga, we'll use.
We could even get fancy.....
     And try necromancy!
Like, hey  man, you know....
     What's to lose!?

Learning's got to be "groovy",
     (Like watching a movie)
     For our young to be reached now in school.
It's the only way, man!
     This pedagogical plan,    
     Forged at Woodstock is radically ‘cool'.

Our country is sinking....
     (Where is critical thinking?)
     Why, today we just "go with the flow"...
"Get in touch with your ‘feelings'!"
     (Relativity's dealing
     A hand from a realm far below.)

The Words of our Savior,
     Don't guide our behavior.
     Today new goals we do swallow.
We hunger and thirst,
     At the trough where "Me"'s first;
     In the mud we consistently wallow.

The conscience is seared,
     When the Lord is not feared,
     In the heart of each generation.
If Truth is not sought,
     Satan's Lie will be bought,
     In the guise of "New Age" education.

"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, 
    But fools despise wisdom and discipline."
                                                  (Proverbs 1:7)

"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
     And knowledge of the Holy One is understanding."
                                                  (Proverbs 9:10)


Our children are dying,
     And our culture is trying
     To pretend that things are "O.K.";
After all, we're affluent,
     And our thoughts are congruent,
     With this "Self-Esteem Theme" of the day.

We've indulged our emotion,
     Sipped the Goddesses' potion,
     And are sailing on seas that are Deep.
But there's something amiss....
     This sea's an Abyss,
     And the price that we're paying's not cheap.

Our leaders are lying,
     And our children are crying
     For hope and direction and meaning.
But our vessel is listing,
     As the Truth we are twisting....
     And most answers we hear
       Are demeaning.

‘Twas a time in the past
     When the Anchor held fast,
     In the turbulent waves of this ocean.
That foundation was laid
     By a nation that prayed.
And God's Word was shared with devotion.

But that's no longer the way,
     As we drift and we stray
     From the truth of Divine Revelation.
Now we follow a chart
     From the "the goddess's heart"
     Trusting "feelings"....
     And dark inclinations.

Our youngsters all know
     That our posture's all show.
     ....(From us, they want only to learn.).....
But for them, we've no answer,
     And this spiritual cancer's pandemic
     From the bow to the stern.

The real issue's ignored,
     And the Truth is deplored;
     Our hearts are darkened and hardened.
Yet there's no sign of panic,
     Though the problem's ‘Titanic'.....
     (This iceberg we hit in the Garden.)

Most seem willing to bet
     Life's a Hollywood set....
     (Do you mind a friendly prediction?)....
When the final bell's tolling,
     And those "credits" are scrolling,
     We'll find Truth is much stranger than fiction.

You see, the message of "Sin",
     Is not Hollywood's "spin".....
We live in an Age of Denial....
"Hey, we didn't do it!"
"The other guy blew it!"
(And we're masked with our "Happy-Face-Smile") 

We just don't like thinking,
     That this boat we're on's sinking...
     .....(Though the water gets higher and higher)....
We would rather ignore,
     The rising flood on the floor,
     Than acknowledge our straits.....
     Which are dire.

But the Anchor's been lost;
     On the waves we are tossed,
     And away from the Truth we've been lured.
Yet the water gets deeper....
     .....(As we face the Grim Reaper).....
      Still we'd rather be ruined,
      Than cured.

For you see, here on board,
     Life preservers are stored,
     Put in place by God's Mercy and Love;
But because of our Pride,
     His Love we deride,
     And we scoff at this Grace from above.

So we strut and we dance;
     We do the "Tinsel Town Prance",
     On that deck for the Foolish and Blind.
And the water pours in
     To this Slave Ship of Sin.
      (Far below.....)
      (Out of sight.....Out of mind....)

And God's invitation
      Of Eternal Salvation,
      Is something we "actors" find odd.
Especially today....
     In the roles that we play,
     We're reluctant to drop our facade.

But the Life Vest IS there;
     Spread the news if you care,
     For your friends and your neighbors on board.
(Most won't believe what you're saying....
     So I suggest also praying,
     To prepare that way to the Lord.)

[Lord, give your Light to my eyes,
     And reveal this world's lies
      To my heart.....
Lord, show me your Son.
Give me Grace, Lord, to see
     That the problem's in me....
So that Your Will, not mine,
     Might be done.]

[This Abyss, Lord, is deep,
     And your love is not cheap....
This Life Jacket was purchased for me!
Lord, help me to still my disordered will
     And accept this....Your Gift....
      Offered free.]    

            " For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son,
that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."

   (John 3:16)

"The Game of Evasion"

What's the problem we see,
   Here at home and D.C.?
We've a difficult stain to erase.
This blot on the soul
    Is taking its toll......
    As we sacrifice Truth
    To save face.

The problem's not new,
   For me or for you.....
It's a constant for man throughout history.
Yet we continue to hide
    Behind mountains of Pride....
    The solution we seek....(?)
    It's a mystery.

At least, that's what we think
    As we continue to sink
    Into tar-pits of compromise,
    Where the conscience is jaded
    In the quagmire created,
    By our "faith" in deception and lies.

But it's a "comfortable space",
    This face-saving place,
    Where we smile as we sink ever deeper,
     In relativity's haze,
     And this malaise of grays,
     Where God's Grace just gets cheaper and cheaper.

I don't think we have learned,
    From Rome which once burned....
     ....(Though I'll bet it's a key to this riddle).
    Now there's smoke everywhere,
      And a tune in the air,
       From a sax this time.....
      Not a fiddle.

So, while Truth we've been spurning
    And the nation's been burning,
    Church leaders pretend that all's well.
Where the Gospel that's heard
    Is blended and blurred,
    With ear-tickling words that will sell.

Now the Word is berated,
   Re-Imagined and twisted as needed.
This way no one's offended!
Guilt and Shame can be ended!
    And "Sin"?.........
    Very neatly "__________" (deleted)

That's "Utopia" calling!
All guardrails are falling;
    We're all free now to "follow our bliss".
No more Judgement or Shame,
    (That "fundamentalist's"  game)
And Heaven?......
    Hey!  No one can miss!

A most comforting theory,
   For all who are weary,
   Of hearing God's Law day and night.....
So it seems we've meandered,
    Far away from God's Standard.
(Now the pollsters can tell us what's "right".)

It's a dangerous ploy,
    These "new rules" we enjoy....
    (They're so easy and tempting to follow.)
It's a game of "pretend",
   Called "Extinction of Sin"....
   We can't lose!
    .....(But the ‘victory's' hollow.)

So, the fight we enjoin,
   (We best gird up our loins .)
   For this darkness will surely just worsen,
In this game of evasion,
    And amoral persuasion......
    That Truth's not a Person.

"Hosea's Field"

"Then they will say, ‘We have no king because we did not revere the Lord.   But
even if we had a king, what could he do for us?'"
     "They make many promises, take false oaths and make agreements; therefore
lawsuits spring up like poisonous weeds in a plowed field..."
(Hosea 10: 3,4)

Hosea was shown
   A field overgrown,
   Not with wheat or barley for Bread;
But instead he saw weeds....
   And detestable deeds...
   And a nation that from God had fled.

He saw a country disgraced,
   By idolatry, waste,
    Broken promises, lawsuits and lies;
He saw blind priests of deceit,
    Who had bowed at the feet
    Of Ba'al, the "Lord of the flies".

And the people just followed....
    False teaching they swallowed,
    As they gathered at pagan high places,
    Where Ashtar was queen,
     And God's chosen were seen
     Bowing low on their knees
     And their faces.

I suggest (if I may)
   That the same's true today;
Our attention from God's been diverted.
God's Word is now blurred.
......(The cauldron is stirred)....
"Sin" and "Judgement"?
       Conveniently "skirted".

How much have we learned?
    The Lord's Word's again spurned,
     Re-Imagined, perverted and diced.
We see a "goddess reunion",
     Milk and Honey communion,
    To wiccan "circles of pow'r"
      We're enticed.

God's message is lost.....
    We hear of Christ but no Cross.
    (Lord, help us to see the result!)
Our young are confused,
And for guidance?
     We consult the occult.

What Hosea saw then,
    We see now again....
A nation that's turned from the Lord.
With our rejection of Him,
    We seal a future that's grim.
(A fact every Prophet abhorred.)

Still....we're invited instead,
    To partake of the Bread
     And to dine with the One who will reign.
The invitation, you see,
    Reads "R.S.V.P."
    (To reject or ignore is insane.)

But insanity's call,
   Since humanity's Fall,
   To us may seem "reasoned" or "right".
Just ask Nietzche/ de Sade,
    Who both died cursing God,
     Strapped in beds while resisting the Light.

      "The Feast"

  "Elijah went before the people and said, "How long will you waver between
two opinions?  If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Ba'al is God, follow
   "But the people said nothing."

                                                      (1Kings 18: 21)

   "Son of man, do you see what they are doing---the utterly detestable things
the house of Israel is doing here, things that will drive me far from my
    "Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel are
doing in the darkness?....With their backs toward the temple of the Lord and
their faces toward the east, they were bowing down to the sun in the east...."

(Ezekiel 8: 6...16)

In Ezekiel Eight,
     We read of a state
     Where church leaders had wandered astray.
To the Prophet was shown,
     Corrupt seeds being sown....
     To false gods the priests bowed and prayed.

There Ashtar was sighted,
     Ba'al worship invited....
     And the clergy bowed down to the east.
They Re-Imagined God's Law;
    And what Ezekiel saw,
     Soon spread like a poisonous yeast.

Do you see what occurred?
     God's Word became blurred,
     'Cause the Watchmenn had fallen asleep....
Then the temple was looted,
     And the Faith prostituted....
     In the end, destruction was reaped.

But I know what you'll say...
     "Things are different today."
After all, the Bible's just fable.
     Now the Word's 'reassessed',
     And by Science we are blessed....
    (A 'new plate' has been set on our table.)

Now we pick and we choose,
   From new 'spiritual stews',
   Cooked up in the galley below.
This menu's "New Age",
    But it comes from a page,
    That was written a long time ago.

We have 'Lucifer's Stew'....
    Made for me and for you.
    It appeals to our taste and our sight.
It's tempting....exciting.....
    To the palate, inviting;
And our waitress says,
    "Please,...take a bite!

Well, the Church has now bitten;
    By the "goddess", we're smitten....
    (This meal that she serves?.....A delight!)
And while Ba'al is her mate,
    She tempts with a plate,
     From her boss,....the Angel of Light.

While church leaders were yawning,
   New Age doctrine was dawning....
   And the trap of deception was set.
Ashtar beckons us in,
    To this "Church of No Sin";
    And the boss grins......
    ....Spreading the net.

They call it "new revelation".....
    Seems there's no hesitation,
    To embrace this exciting 'new light'.
Hey, the "old Way" was boring....
    (Our leaders were snoring!)
    If it feels good.........
    It's got to be "right"!

No more guilt....No more shame...
  A delectable game!
   And the Rules?....Just a matter of taste.
Now everyone 'wins',
    Because nobody 'Sins'.
    That Calvary-Thing?......We've erased.

Now we're free to devour,
   This dish known as Power
   (With an order of Lust on the side)....
"Help yourself....Eat your fill!
    Please ignore, sir, your bill."
In this Cafe du Monde....known as Pride.

As we ponder and chew,
    This appealing new stew,
     That check we would love to deny.....
But that bill becomes due
     Both for me and for you....
And the price that is asked is too high!

This bill....I've discovered,
    By God's Grace has been covered.
    ('Twas a debt we could never have paid.)
Most don't even know,
     There's a bill that we owe!
We're blind-sided by Pride, I'm afraid.

Lord, make our hearts willing,
    To seek what's fulfilling.
    Give us Grace, Lord, to swallow what's True!
Lord, this &
145;menu of sin',
     Was prepared with a grin,
     By the chef down below....Not by You.

I pray we're not scorning,
     Ezekiel's warning.
     To God's Banquet there's only one Door.
Through the Prophet we see,
    That the Lord holds the Key,
    To His Feast that will last evermore.

"He has taken me to the banquet hall,
    And his banner over me is love."
      (Song of Songs 2: 4)

"But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and
not die.  I am the living bread that came down from heaven.  If anyone eats of
this bread, he will live forever.  This bread is my flesh, which I will give
for the life of the world."
(John 6: 51, 52)

"The Mirror"

There's no need of confession
    For our "moral trangression",
    In this land relativity built.
The rules are all changed,
    The Law rearranged,
    So that now
    There's no shame and no guilt.

In the past it was clearer,
     Moral Law was The Mirror,
     Into which we could look and agree...,
It was God who had spoken,
     And we who were broken...
     Who by Faith and God's Grace were set free.

But now Gallop has noted,
     Moral Law's been outvoted.....
     (In that Mirror we'd rather not look.)
Now Sin can be dodged,
     Moral complaints can't be lodged;
And besides......
     Now we're all off the hook!

In the "post-modernist" game,
     There's no blame and no shame....
     With "Sin" and transgression negated.
If it "feels good"....Just do it!
     "You're the boss....Nothin' to it!"
     "It's cool, man.".....(Even when it's X-rated)

It's much nicer this way....
     When we don't have to play
     With that Mirror in front of our souls.
Now our conscience is "free".
     And I'm free to be Me!
     (Like a puppet ruled now by the polls.)

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