Sunday, June 13, 2010

An Ultimate Rogue

What are we -- Day 47 of the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico?  How many gallons have been spilled?  (I really don't keep track; the death and damage is beyond my comprehension -- a sickening reminder of the lighted fuel pricing board at our local super Wawa)  Nevertheless, BP executives have been and will be called to account for their role in this disaster.  The names Doug Suttles and Tony Hayward will undoubtedly go down in history with Joseph Jeffrey Hazelwood and Exxon Valdez.  Hazelwood even has his very own Wikipedia entry -- "you know you've hit the Big Time when..."  Unfortunately for Hazelwood, it's not very complimentary, and neither will Hayward or Suttles' future entries be.

Also with an infamous reputation is the first black mayor of Philadelphia, Wilson Goode.  A position that set him up to be a historical triumph became his Waterloo when, in 1985, he became the first and so far only, American to drop a bomb on American soil.  I followed the saga daily, before and after the dramatic climax, and have a hard time even today, vilifying the man.  The filth in that house, the demands of the neighbors, the pressure that was put on public officials, the threats that were obvious and, worse, those that were implied...  I would not have wanted to be in the mayor's shoes.

Speaking of race, where is Mark Fuhrman these days?  The infamous member of the LAPD who played such a significant role in the case against OJ Simpson, and later, in his acquittal.  Not that the Prosecution had an iron clad case, or Johnny Cochran (read "Satan") didn't have his skills, but Mark Fuhrman did more for the Defense than he ever could the State.  BTW, also a Wikipedia Gallery of Rogues member.

Despite being any of these scoundrels, or the guy in high school who scored the final two points for the other team during the state championships, or the PTA mom who embezzled thousands of dollars from the treasury, nothing can be quite as bad as being "Alexander the coppersmith." 

Today I was reading 2 Timothy 4.  In verses 14 and 15, Paul mentions Alexander who "did [him] great harm," and warns others to beware of him.  In light of the fact that Paul's letters not only reached the intended addressees, and all of those to whom they were read, and were made part of the Bible which reaches millions of people everyday, and are read by millions of people everyday, and have survived the years and will continue to survive -- they were and are and always will be the WORDS OF GOD!  Paul did not include Alexander the coppersmith because of some personal, Perez Hilton-like desire to drag him through the mud.  He was included because "all Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent equipped for every good work." (2 Timothy 3:16, 17)  It was intentional!  For the ages, Alexander the coppersmith was to be a nefarious character in the story of the Gospel.  A warning to all that we are to beware those who would thwart the spread of God's Message.  A caution to every man, woman, and child that we avoid behavior that would cause others to stumble or reject the Word of God.  This is heavy!  This is not just public, bitter trash-talk by Paul about someone who has crossed him.  This is not some internet site put together by fallible, mortal egoists.  This is Paul's warning, a statement of fact with regard to Alexander's judgment, a caution to those he loves -- all intended and purposefully designed by God to be used by all of us through eternity.  Let's face it, when you've got your name recorded for posterity, you want it in The Lamb's Book of Life, not the "What Not to Do List."
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