Stay at Home Slugs Part Six.


This is the last installment on this particular subject:

Proverbs 31:10-12  “Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.”

“This description of the virtuous woman is designed to show what wives the women should make and what wives the men should choose…” – Matthew Henry {1662-1714}

I want to begin this blog with what some may consider an unusual word.


One of the things that made this woman a virtuous woman was pride.

Not that she was proud but that she took pride on how she lived and what she did.

You will notice this throughout this passage of scripture.

She took pride in the food she prepared, the meals she prepared for her family. {vs. 14-15}

Many women today do not even know how to prepare a meal.

She took pride in her work. She rose up early and she worked late into the night. She worked hard to provide for her family. {vs.15, 18, 27}

Many ladies today read and text and surf…they do anything but work.

They are lazy compared to this virtuous woman.

She took pride in her ability to add to the family income. {vs.18}

She was a businesswoman, an entrepreneur.

She seemed to be a woman who could run a couple of businesses and still keep the house clean and take care of her families needs. {vs. 16, 24}

This also by the way gave her the ability to give to those who were less fortunate. {vs. 20}

From what I have seen lately there are more than a few ladies who boast about being “stay at home moms” whose family would be better off if they took a job instead and with the extra income hired a housekeeper. {sic}

She took pride in her home. {vs. 22, 27}

Her house didn’t look like a tornado just came through.

Her husband was not embarrassed when someone stopped by.

Dirty dishes weren’t stacked up in the kitchen and the house was clean.

She took pride in decorating her house and making it a pleasant place to live and visit.

When this is mentioned today the “stay at home slugs” just roll their eyes because they “don’t have time to clean the house…they are too busy”. {Doing what pray-tell?} Then they proceed to blame it all on little Oswald and Esmeralda. Maybe she is teaching little Oswald and Esmeralda to be as lazy and a big slob like she is.

She also took pride in the way she and her family were dressed. {vs.19, 21-22}

Her kids didn’t look like they were dressed out of the “rag bag”.

They didn’t show up looking like something that just fell off of a dump truck.

Their clothes didn’t look like they dug them back out of the dirty clothes.

I guess its the latest trend among some to see how sloppy and slouchy  you and your kids can look ?

{no sob stories please… My wife  has always managed to make sure our family looked clean and neat most often times with clothes from the thrift store or yard sales}

I suppose the “stay at home slug”somehow thinks it is a badge of honor to live in a pigsty.

Gods Word has nothing but good to say about this woman in Proverbs 31.

She is a role model for every Christian lady.

She is a pattern.

Read the last part of the chapter…

Proverbs 31:25-31

“Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised.Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.”

May God help our Christian ladies to aspire to this woman’s diligent, hardworking example.

Brother Shawn





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Stay at Home Slugs Part 5

Appletons_15_pg060I realize that this 2016 and not the 1890’s or even the 1950’s. The golden days of June Cleaver are over and done. But I want you to notice from a Christian perspective these admonitions have not changed, just as many other things have not changed.

Just because we live in so-called “modern days” does not mean as Christians we have the right to throw the Bible in the trash can.

The Bible is more relevant today to the believer as the Wall Street Journal is to the investor.

Gods Word still tells His people how to live.

Fashions may change.

Occupations may change.

Hobbies may change.

The entire world may change around us but that doesn’t relegate the Bible to the dust bin.

This passage tells women how to live.

Notice it doesn’t say; Get a college education or make sure you have a good career.

It says…

“The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things That they may teach the young women to be sober to love their husbands, to love their children To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”   Titus 2:3-5

If your idea of a being a good wife is laying around on the couch talking on the phone, watching the TV or spending hours on the computer while the house looks like something off of a “hoarders” reality show…you need help.

You need one of the “aged women” to teach you how not to be a “stay at home slug”.

Brother Shawn



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Stay at Home Slugs Part 4

Appletons_15_pg060Not long ago I received the question, “What is the proper role of a Christian wife and mother?” {we have a question box at the front of the church that people can put their questions in}

I thought Proverbs 31 would be a great place to examine what the Bible says concerning the proper role of a wife and mother.

But before I look at Proverbs I would like to share a New Testament passage that is given from God to guide the women both young and old.

Titus 2:3-5 “The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

Let’s look at the phrase “keepers at home” and the Greek words behind the English translation.

Strong’s (Greek Dictionary of the New Testament) Definition: From G3624 and οὖρος ouros (a guard; be ware); a stayer at home that is domestically inclined (a good housekeeper): – keeper at home.

Thayer’s Greek Lexicon Definition: Caring for the house, working at home, the (watch or) keeper of the house, keeping at home and taking care of household affairs, a domestic.

This passage tells us that a Christian lady is to be taught by the older ladies to be “sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands”

 If a Christian lady learns to do these things there is no doubt she will be fine example and role model.

By learning and doing the things mentioned in these verses a Christian lady would also be pleasing to Jesus Christ.

To behave otherwise is to bring a reproach on Christ and Christianity.

In the words of the Apostle, a Christian lady should do these things “that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

To some, it seems these things almost come naturally

…others, according to the Apostle Paul, need to be taught.

Either way, its right.

Brother Shawn


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Stay at Home Slugs Part 3

Appletons_15_pg060Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. Proverbs 31:10

This is the third in a series concerning a question I was asked recently: “What is the proper role of a Christian wife and mother?”

Some may read these articles and say something like, “your wife is OCD” or “cooking and cleaning is no big deal to me”. That indeed may be the case but I am trying to look at the question from a Biblical context. In other words I want to answer the question from the Bible not just from feelings or experience. For instance I often times do not “feel” like going to work. I’d rather sit on the couch and watch old movies or read a good book in my pajamas. But I was taught {by example} that a man is supposed to work and provide for his family. Later on after I became a Christian I learned that God expected the man to provide for their house.

“But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” I Timothy 5:8.

A lot of ladies may not “feel” like keeping the house clean or cooking dinner or keeping up with the laundry. It may not seem important to them. It could be that they would rather lie around on the couch or do some shopping instead. But the Bible says that a virtuous woman, a woman whose value is far above rubies should be different.

A lady who will not take care of her house or her children is not a “bad person” necessarily; she is just not a virtuous woman according to Gods Word.

If a man is physically able to work and provide for his family the Bible says he should do just that.

If a woman is physically able to keep house and take care of her family the Bible says that is what she is supposed to do.

She may be a “stay at home mom”.

She may be a “home-school” mom.

She may be a lot of things…

But if she doesn’t look “well to the ways of her household”…I would label her a “stay at home slug”                                                                                                                               Next time I hope to examine this Bible list of what a virtuous woman looks like exactly…

Brother Shawn


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Stay at Home Slugs Part 2

Appletons_15_pg060Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life. Proverbs 31:10-12

As to my salvation experience “all I know is what I know”.

When God saved me He changed me. It was a radical change. There was a night and day difference in my life. He did the same for my wife.

I have real issues with people who say Jesus saved them but there has been no change in their life.

He is a life changing Saviour.

“All I know is what I know”.

When it comes to domestic life, again, “all I know is what I know”.

I was raised in a “Leave to Beaver – Father Knows Best” environment.

My dad worked everyday and when he came through the front door in the evening my mother was taking dinner off of the stove or out of the oven. My mother kept her house meticulously clean. There were never stacks of dirty dishes or piles of unwashed laundry.

We went out we looked our best.

When Evelyn and I were married she was the same way. {By the way she was not raised or taught to be that way.}

We have been married for 32 years.

My wife has always kept my house clean.

She has always made our family delicious meals.

She has always kept our clothes washed.

She always took pride in the appearance of her family when they went out.

She has at times worked outside of the home for extra income but even then she kept the house up.

My wife has also struggled with her health but she has still managed to keep the house clean.

She also took pride in her home. I have NEVER been embarrassed to invite someone into my home.

Does it sound like I am bragging on my mother and my wife?

I am.

“All I know is what I know”.

I guess that’s ok because the Bible says, “Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.” Proverbs 31:28

Maybe some are just lazy…you know like slugs.

Next time I would like to look at the virtues of a virtuous woman according to the Bible.

Brother Shawn




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Stay at Home Slugs Part 1

Appletons_15_pg060“The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.” Titus 2:3-5

I was recently asked the question: What is the proper role of a Christian wife and mother? This subject matter is nothing new to me because being a former IFB {Independent Fundamental Baptist, *see note below} the discussion of the role of women is a common theme.

Being also from what many would consider the more “radical” side of Baptist fundamentalism I have been affiliated with groups who many would consider almost Mennonite in their attitude toward women. {I have nothing bad to say about the Anabaptist/Mennonite people. In the early nineties my family and I seriously considered joining an Anabaptist/Mennonite group in Pennsylvania.}

My wife and I travel to the Amish country in Ohio quite often and we have noticed something rather interesting. The Mennonite men are often dressed just like I dress but the women are dressed like they just stepped off of the Mayflower. I see a similar pattern among the more conservative IFB’s. The ladies and little girls often times are dressed in what I would call “Mennonite lite” look {sans head covering}. This is especially common among the IFB home school groups. One young ladies blog I recently looked at called the style the “blue jean jumper and prairie dress” look.

Often times the more conservative IFB men dress much like the world but the IFB ladies look pretty much like the Mennonites but they forgot their head covering on their dresser. Why bring all this up? Because there is more to being a godly wife and mother than dressing like you just stepped off the set of Little House on the Prairie Part 2.

I am all for modesty but I am afraid that many have unwittingly made ladies dress standards a prerequisite to our Christianity. For instance how many ladies do you know who would be willing to adopt the “Mennonitish” look if that is what it took to be a Christian? {Is that what it takes to be a Christian?}

My wife and I realized that if we joined that Anabaptist/Mennonite group in Pennsylvania it meant radical changes to HER clothing and the CLOTHING OF MY DAUGHTERS. I could go on and dress like I always dressed. That is not why we didn’t join by the way. My wife said at the time that she would live by whatever dress standards they imposed. But we didn’t feel comfortable with their overemphasis of the doctrines of Arminianism and non-resistance.

I am seeing a trend emerging among young ladies who know how to dress modestly but their husband has to work a job, take care of the kids and keep the house clean.

They love to brag that they are “stay at home moms” but I cannot help but think a better name would be “stay at home slugs”

What is the proper role of a Christian wife and mother?

This is part one so I am just laying the groundwork.

Stay tuned.

Brother Shawn

* I am still an independent Baptist and I still believe the fundamentals BUT over the years I have moved away from the “IFB denomination”.


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The Necessity of Regeneration



And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;

Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Ephesians 2:1, 5-8

“Who were dead – Not only diseased, but dead; absolutely void of all spiritual life; and as incapable of quickening yourselves, as persons literally dead. In trespasses and sins This text lays the axe to the very root of spiritual pride, and all glorying in ourselves. Only the power that makes a world can make a Christian. And when he is so created, the old things are passed away – Of their own accord, even as snow in spring. Behold – The present, visible, undeniable change! All things are become new – He has new life, new senses, new faculties, new affections, new appetites, new ideas and conceptions. His whole tenor of action and conversation is new, and he lives, as it were, in a new world. God, men, the whole creation, heaven, earth, and all therein, appear in a new light, and stand related to him in a new manner, since he was created anew in Christ Jesus.” –  John Wesley

{John 1: 10-13}

“Wherever God confers the dignity of children, he creates the nature and disposition of children. Men cannot do so when they adopt.” – Matthew Henry

1.We do not and cannot “birth ourselves” {John 1: 10-13}

Grace does not run in the blood.

“The Jews gloried much in their parentage, and the noble blood that ran in their veins: We are Abraham’s seed.”– Matthew Henry

It is not produced by the natural power of our own will.

Left to ourselves we would never seek after God.

{Psalm 14} “…let us lament the corruption of our own nature, and see what need we have of the grace of God; and, since that which is born of the flesh is flesh, let us not marvel that we are told we must be born again.” – Matthew Henry

{also Romans 3:9-19}

So the Bible tells us that the new birth is not “of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”

And according to Gods diagnosis, man is in a hopeless state.

“If Jesus Christ were to stand on the platform to-night, what would many people do with him? “O!” say some, “we would make him a King.” I do not believe it. They would crucify him again, if they had the opportunity. If He were to come and say, “Here I am, I love you, will you be saved by Me?” not one of you would consent if you were left to your will.” – Charles Haddon Spurgeon

Again, “There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.” 

2.The new birth is of God.

It means to be born of God.

I Peter 1:3, 23

John 3:1-8

“The wind bloweth – According to its own nature, not thy will, and thou hearest the sound thereof – Thou art sure it doth blow, but canst not explain the particular manner of its acting. So is every one that is born of the Spirit – The fact is plain, the manner of His operations inexplicable.” – John Wesley

{John Wesley had a Masters degree from Oxford University yet he could not explain the operations of the Holy Spirit in regards to the new birth.}

The “new birth is owing to the word of God as the means and to the Spirit of God as the great and sole author. True believers are born of God” – Matthew Henry

1 John 5:1 “Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God…”

{also 1John 3:9}

I believe Ezekiel 37 is a picture of preaching to men who are dead in their sins.

When we are told to preach the gospel to every creature we have been given an impossible task. Like Ezekiel’s prophecy we are preaching to the dead. We are preaching to dry bones.

“And he said unto me, Son of man, can these bones live? And I answered, O Lord God, thou knowest. Again he said unto me, Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus saith the Lord God unto these bones; Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live:” {vs.3-5}

“Then said he unto me, Prophesy unto the wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.” {vs.9}

Just as a newborn baby could not have “birthed” itself neither can we spiritually birth ourselves.

We had nothing to do with our natural birth.

That is why I told our congregation recently;

“I can tell you how to be saved but I cannot tell you how to be born again.

Romans 10:9-10That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”

Jesus told Nicodemus, “Ye must be born again.”

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Are you Afraid of the Bible?

Is not my word like as a fire? saith the LORD; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces? Jeremiah 23:29 

I believe that many Christians are afraid of the Word of God. They are afraid that it might demolish their preconceived notions. It may well destroy their indoctrination. The Bible is THE authority. Men’s theories and opinions do not supersede the Word of God. I have been taught things over the years that were really just opinions bolstered by a few Bible verses {usually taken out of context} along with a good measure of name calling. I love all my bothers and sisters in Christ but I desire to be loyal to the Word of God. Peer pressure can affect adults too. Everyone wants to be liked. No one wants to be excluded. Christians can be just as cruel as the lost world when it comes to pressuring people to fit in. I too want to fit in…with God.

I want to please the Saviour who bought me.

Here are a couple relevant quotes from Spurgeon:

“My love of consistency with my own doctrinal views is not great enough to allow me knowingly to alter a single text of Scripture. I have great respect for orthodoxy, but my reverence for inspiration is far greater. I would sooner a hundred times over appear to be inconsistent with myself than be inconsistent with the word of God. I never thought it to be any very great crime to seem to be inconsistent with myself; for who am I that I should everlastingly be consistent? But I do think it a great crime to be so inconsistent with the word of God that I should want to lop away a bough or even a twig from so much as a single tree of the forest of Scripture.” {Salvation by Knowing the Truth}

“Men who are morbidly anxious to possess a self-consistent creed, a creed which will put together and form a square like a Chinese puzzle,–are very apt to narrow their souls. Those who will only believe what they can reconcile will necessarily disbelieve much of divine revelation.”

“With words of human wisdom, and speculations of their own invention, men disguise falsehood, and deceive many. Be it ours to give to the people what God gives to us. Be ye each of you as Micaiah, who declared, “As the Lord liveth, what the Lord saith unto me, that will I speak.” {An All Around Ministry – Faith}

see also: Grammatical Gunpowder




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An Open Letter to Christmas Haters…

RoyalG_016_Pg36Romans 14:5  “One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.”

We live in a strange day. I have Christian friends who detest Christmas. When I was a kid the only folks we knew who didn’t celebrate Christmas were the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

I guess there were other folks around but until a few years ago I had never heard of them. It is no wonder the unsaved world has a hard time figuring Christians out. I am having a pretty hard time of it myself. Up until recently virtually no Baptists in this neck of the woods rejected the celebration of Christmas.

I am going to make several lighthearted observations.

#1. I believe many Baptists  have recently rejected Christmas to show how “super-separated” they are. I am speaking mainly of the IFB {Independent Fundamental Baptist} folks.

But the “hate Christmas” movement is also gaining popularity in the Sovereign grace and home-school movements.

Having been an IFB for many years I know how they think. I know what makes some of them tick.

Often times Christians try to outdo each other on separation.

Rejecting Christmas may pretty much be the ‘coup-de-grace’.

{I mean for all of their separation even the Amish and Mennonites celebrate Christmas}

It’s hard to be “more separated” than to reject Christmas.

Years ago I worked with a Christian man who detested Christmas. The company we worked for gave us a yearly Christmas bonus. I asked him since he didn’t believe in Christmas would it be all right if I had his bonus…He didn’t quite hate Christmas that much.

#2. I believe many modern day Christmas haters are from the “reformed” crowd. Now this crowd is hard for me to figure out also. Many of them indulge in all manner of questionable behavior but they hate the celebration of Christmas. But from what I have observed they really aren’t too concerned with being separated from the world.

For the most part they can partake in a lot of what I would call questionable or worldly activities. The primary reason why these folks hate the celebration of Christmas is because they see they see Rome behind every Christmas tree. That nasty old Pope is behind it all. In their mind they are still “reforming”,  I guess.

They have studied their history and have unfortunately  found out that their parents, grandparents and great-grandparents were all basically a bunch of pagan idol worshipers.

#3. I believe many today find the rejection of Christmas appealing because they are cheapskates. The reformed or fundamentalist view {or combination of the two} will work…“any port in a storm” { I am joking here…sort of}

#4 I cannot help but see PRIDE  at times. – “We don’t do that”


I do need to make clear…

I have never worshiped a Christmas tree.

I have never told my kids that Santa Claus is real or brought them gifts.

I have never bowed down or worshiped a nativity scene.

But I must confess…

I have some wonderful memories with regards to Christmas

I enjoy being with my friends and family during the holidays.

I enjoy the good food.

I enjoy watching my family open gifts.

I enjoy looking at the lights.

I enjoy hearing the Christmas songs.

I enjoy watching It’s a Wonderful Life and Ebenezer Scrooge and The Grinch that Stole Christmas.

Last but not least,

I have a few questions for the “Christmas haters”

Did you enjoy Christmas when you were a kid?

Has celebrating Christmas tarnished you now that you are an adult?

Are you “scarred for life”?

Do you look back on your childhood holidays as “misspent years?”

How does your family feel about your decision to reject the celebration of Christmas?

Is your family hurt over your decision to reject the Christmas holiday?

How do you think your unsaved family thinks of your decision?

Do you think your children might be bitter about your decision not to celebrate Christmas when they get older?

Yeah, yeah, I know…the catholics, the pagans, the mass…

I have a suggestion.

You could keep the good things about Christmas and throw out the bad.

As for me…

I’m going to enjoy my family.

I’m going to give and receive gifts.

I’m going to drink some eggnog.

I’m going to eat some good food.

I am going to watch It’s a Wonderful Life and Ebenezer Scrooge and The Grinch that Stole Christmas.

I am going to think about the birth of Christ and how He came to earth save His people from their sins.

It would be a good time to be a Christian.

I guess you could say, “Bah Humbug!”

But I say,


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ShipsCo_028_Pg62_SandyHookByNightI found this missionary story in an old book I have {1918} I thought I would share it in The Christian Excavator – Brother Shawn

“Some years ago some Moravian missionaries sailed from London to the island of St. Thomas, where they were going to labour among the slaves, The name of the ship in which they sailed was the “Britannia.” At first the voyage was pleasant and prosperous; and in their hearts, as well as with their voices, the missionaries would often thank God for his goodness to them.

But one day a great danger threatened them. A pirate ship was distinguished far off, but bearing down towards them. Now pirates are at sea what robbers are on land, but even more terrible; because there is seldom any help near. They cruise about the seas in their light-built, swift-sailing vessels; seldom going on land, but making it their whole business to rob other ships. And on their ill-gotten spoils they live. Generally they murder as well as rob. Sometimes they lay a plank over the ship’s side, blindfold the eyes of the unfortunate crew and passengers, and compel them to walk thus along the plank, till, without knowing it, they reach the end; and then they fall into the sea, and are drowned. No wonder that the sight of a pirate-vessel was a very alarming one to the people in the “Britannia.”

It came on, nearer and nearer,—and what could those who saw it do, all alone there, in the wide ocean? Each did what he thought wisest and best. The captain judged it best to put the ship into a state of defence; so he arranged his men, and prepared to resist as well as he could. The sailors, whatever they thought best, had no choice but to obey the captain. But the missionaries thought it best to pray; and they went down into the cabin, and there, heedless of what was going on deck, they poured out their souls in earnest prayer to God; remembering, no doubt, His promises, and the words, “If God be for us, who can be against us ?”— Romans 8:31.

The pirate-ship approached till it came within gun-shot of the “Britannia”; and then from the cannon arranged along its deck, began to pour out a heavy fire. And there were grappling-irons on board, or strong sharp hooks fixed to long ropes, ready to throw into the “Britannia,” and hold her fast, while the pirates should board her, and do their work of destruction. It seemed that there was little chance of escape from such an enemy.” But the captain, whose heart was sinking at the fearful prospect before him, did not know what powerful helpers he had below, in the few peaceable missionaries, whose fervent prayers were then ascending through the noise of the fight, to heaven.

The moment the pirates tried to throw their grappling-irons across to the other ship, their own was tossed violently, and the men who held the ropes were thrown with force into the sea. Vexed by this disaster, the pirate-captain sent others, who shared the same fate. Seeing he could not succeed in this manner, he resolved to fire at the “Britannia”, till she sank with repeated blows. But this effort strangely failed also; for the balls missed their aim, and fell into the sea. The smoke of the frequent charges was very dense, and hung about the vessels for some minutes, hiding them from each other’s view. At last a sudden gust of wind cleared it away; and to the amazement of the pirate-captain, the “Britannia” was seen at a distance, with all her sails spread to the wind, speeding swiftly away from the attack! And they were forced in great anger to abandon their cruel purpose.

Thus wonderfully had God appeared, and saved the vessel, in answer to prayer. The missionaries’ prayers had been greatly honoured; but they were to have a further fruit still.

Five years afterwards, during which the missionaries had been diligently preaching the gospel at St. Thomas’s, they, and the other missionaries on the island, agreed to meet together to celebrate the anniversary of their deliverance from the pirates, and to thank God for his other mercies. As they sat together, word was brought that a stranger wished to speak to them. And at their permission, a tall man entered, with fine bold features and a pleasant expression of face. The missionaries wondered, and one asked, What was the stranger’s business with them?

“First answer me one question,” said he: “Are you the men who came to this island, five years ago, in the English ship Britannia?”

“We are,” replied the missionary who had spoken.

“And you were attacked upon the sea by pirates?”

“Exactly; but why ask these questions?”

“Because,” answered the stranger, “I am the captain who commanded the pirate vessel which attacked you.” Then the missionaries looked at one another in silent wonder, as their former enemy continued:—”The miraculous way in which your vessel escaped was the cause of my own salvation from the power of sin, through faith in Christ.”

It would be too long to tell you all his words; but you may imagine with what unspeakable joy the missionaries listened to his tale, as he went on to tell them how, in his vexation at their strange escape, he bad made inquiries of the captain of the Britannia, and learned that it was through the prayers of the Moravian missionaries of St. Thomas’s,—and how, not understanding how a vessel could be saved from pirates by prayer, he resolved to know the Moravian brothers. He sold his vessel, and in the United States of America one day visited a Moravian chapel, and heard a sermon from the words, “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” He sought the preacher, and heard from him the way of salvation through Jesus Christ. “And thus,” he concluded, ” from a pirate-captain, I am become a poor sinner— justified by the grace and mercy of Christ; and my chief hope has been that I might some day be able to seek you, and relate to You my miraculous conversion. This joy is granted to me to-day.”

He ceased, and you may imagine the feelings of the missionaries. They were met to celebrate their deliverance from the pirates on that day five years ago, through prayer. And there stood before them the pirate-captain himself, not fierce now, but humble and pious,—who traced his own deliverance from the bondage of Satan, to the same prayer that rescued them from him!”

And they all knelt down together before God, and thanked him for his great mercies.”



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