Poetry With A Mission



...a thought provoking poetical exercise.

“Then God said to Jacob, “Go up to Bethel and settle there, and build an altar there to God, who appeared to you when you were fleeing from your brother Esau.” So Jacob said to his household and to all who were with him, “Get rid of the foreign gods you have with you, and purify yourselves and change your clothes. Then come, let us go up to Bethel, where I will build an altar to God, who answered me in the day of my distress and who has been with me wherever I have gone.” So they gave Jacob all the foreign gods they had and the rings in their ears, and Jacob buried them under the oak at Shechem” (Gen 35:4, NIV).

“When the people heard these distressing words, they began to mourn and no one put on any ornaments. For the LORD had said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites, ‘You are a stiff-necked people. If I were to go with you even for a moment, I might destroy you. Now take off your ornaments and I will decide what to do with you.’ ” So the Israelites stripped off their ornaments at Mount Horeb” (Ex 33:4-6, NIV).

“The LORD says, “The women of Zion are haughty, walking along with outstretched necks, flirting with their eyes, tripping along with mincing steps, with ornaments jingling on their ankles. Therefore the Lord will bring sores on the heads of the women of Zion; the LORD will make their scalps bald.” In that day the Lord will snatch away their finery: the bangles and headbands and crescent necklaces, the earrings and bracelets and veils, the headdresses and ankle chains and sashes, the perfume bottle and charms, the signet rings and nose rings, the fine robes and the capes and cloaks, the purses and mirrors, and the linen garments and tiaras and shawls” (Isa 3:16-23, NIV).

“ ‘I will punish her for the days she burned incense to the Baals, she decked herself with rings and jewellery and went after her lovers, but she forgot Me, declares the LORD’ ” (Hosea 2:13, NIV).

“ ‘You shall not make any cuts in your body for the dead nor make any tattoo marks on yourselves: I am the LORD’ ” (Lev 19:28, NASB).

“Do not adorn yourselves outwardly [vanity, wrongful pride] by braiding your hair [any hair style that is designed to attract special and flattering attention to its owner], and by wearing gold ornaments [rings, etc] or fine clothing; Rather, let your adornment be the inner self with the lasting beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in God’s sight” (1 Peter 3:3,4).

“Also that the women should dress themselves modestly and decently in suitable clothing, not with their hair braided, or with gold, pearls or expensive clothes [purchases should be compatible with Christian stewardship], but with good works [the internal nature of genuine religion], as is proper for women who profess reverence for God” (1 Tim 2:9,10).

“The woman was dressed in purple and scarlet, and was glittering with gold, precious stones and pearls. She held a golden cup in her hand, filled with abominable things and the filth of her adulteries. This title was written on her forehead: MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT THE MOTHER OF PROSTITUTES AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF EARTH. I saw that the woman was drunk with the blood of the saints, the blood of those who bore testimony to Jesus” (Rev 17:4-6, NIV).

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Adornment

One can debate the wearing of jewellery, and I will,
But why are the cries in defense of jewellery so shrill?
Might it be because Christians are in love with jewellery,
Caught up in the trappings of Egypt — seduced willingly?

Wouldn’t they rather use such money to ease poverty,
And to help save thousands dying of starvation daily?
After all, every dollar helps, and jewellery’s not needed,
But most importantly though, are the Scriptures being heeded?

Jewellery says, “Look at me,” — and let’s face it, that’s vanity,
Yes, it’s not Christian self forgetfulness — that’s a certainty.
Rather, it’s a bid for attention, which reveals inner pride,
Hence why jewellery’s not seen on Revelation’s waiting bride.

But it is seen on Revelation’s harlot — cause for thought —
And hence the question: Why then, have Christians jewellery sought?
Have they been, and are they still, paralleling ancient Israel?
Well, going by the Scriptures, seems we’ve another sad tale.

We’re to dress to please God, not self or others. Bottom line?
Jewellery appeals to pride, leads to spiritual decline.
The purpose of adornment is to attract attention,
It says, “I want you to admire me,” — its vain intention.

But given that folk are dying, and all the poverty,
Surely guilt and sin are attached to buying jewellery.
In my eyes, and surely God’s, such indulgence is a crime,
Given how so many have suffered and died overtime.

Our refusal of jewellery represents separation,
Separation from the world — and shouts, “No!” to temptation.
Yes, in the world but not of the world, lovers of Christ, not man,
Plus, jewellery on a fallen earth wasn’t God’s original plan.

Yes, the odd text may seem to endorse wearing jewellery,
But seem is all it is, for sound study shows differently.
And this is why Christians need to plumb the depths of Scripture,
Letting cumulative evidence provide the right picture.

Makeup?

Maybe God excuses makeup where there are birth defects,
Or other imperfections, that sadly, some poor soul afflicts.
But where it’s not necessary, makeup’s just vanity,
And like jewellery, a stumbling block, harmful spiritually.

Body piecing?

Body piecing is forbidden, and clearly pagan,
It’s primitive behaviour, a risk, harmful to the skin.
Likewise, those disfiguring tattoos that mar God’s creation —
(That’s you and I) — for both, are rebellious mutilation.

By Lance Landall



A) If adornment is acceptable to God, why did He ask the Israelites at Mount Horeb to remove their ornaments as proof of their sincere repentance for worshiping the golden calf (Ex 33:4-6)?
B) If adornment is acceptable to God, why did Jacob at Shechem begin a process of reform and preparation by summoning his family to remove their ornaments before they met with God at Bethal (Gen 35:1-4)?
C) If adornment is acceptable to God, why did Isaiah reprove wealthy Jewish women for their pride shown by adorning their bodies from head to foot with jewellery and expensive clothes (Isa 3:16-26)?
D) If adornment is acceptable to God, why does Ezekiel use two women decked out in ornaments, and with painted eyes, to represent the apostasy [the turning away from truth] of Israel and Judah (Ezek chap 23)?
E) If adornment is acceptable to God, why does Jeremiah use a seductive woman decked out in ornaments, and with painted eyes, to represent the politically abandoned Israel [invaded, taken captivity], who is trying without success to attract her [Israel’s] former pagan allies [foreign powers] (Jer 4:30; Note Hosea 2:13)?
F) If adornment is acceptable to God, why does God’s Word talk about Jezebel, decked out in ornaments, and with painted eyes, who made a determined effort to seduce the Israelites into idolatry (2 Kings 9:30)?
G) If adornment is acceptable to God, why is a prostitute, arrayed in jewellery, used to represent the End-time worldwide apostate [false] religious power (Rev 17:4)?
H) If adornment is acceptable to God, why is the bride of Christ, representative of the Church, dressed modestly in pure fine linen without any ornaments (Rev 19:7,8)?
I) If adornment is acceptable to God, why are the angels shown as dressed in pure fine linen, and without any ornaments (Rev 15:6)?
J) If adornment is acceptable to God, why did the apostle Paul tell women to dress themselves modestly and not to deck themselves out in ornaments [regarding public worship] (1 Tim 2:9,11)?
K) If adornment is acceptable to God, why did the apostle Peter tell women not to deck themselves out in ornaments [regarding the home, and in general] (1 Peter 3:1-4)?

Source available.



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