"The angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve"

Strong examples of moral courage mean a great deal to us these days. Bishop Tutu in South Africa standing against apartheid. Boris Yeltsin resisting an armed coup on the steps of the Russian Parliament.

But an example from any time, any place, when someone has faced fear and acted courageously can be heartening. The Bible tells of Paul's example in a shipwreck when he was being taken to prison by boat. Imagine what it would have meant to hear his assurances if you were one of those having to jump into mountainous seas as the ship foundered and sank.

What he said was recorded in the Bible in rather measured cadences, but thinking of the scene, we can hear the words above the wind: "For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Cæsar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee. Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me."

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The evolution of prayer
March 9, 1992

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