We who preach and write, do so in a manner different from which the Scriptures have been written. We write while we make progress. We learn something new every day. We speak as we still knock for understanding...If anyone criticizes me when I have said what is right, he does me an injustice. But I would be more angry with the one who praises me and takes what I have written for Gospel truth than I would be with the one who criticizes me unfairly. -Augustine

The 200 Dancing Daughters of Shiloh

In the book of Judges, with all of its peculiarities, I’d like to draw your attention to the narrator’s closing comments about the abduction of the two hundred dancing daughters of Shiloh. According to Deuteronomy 16:16, these gatherings were to be primarily male in attendance. So why were there two hundred dancing daughters of Shiloh?

To understand this puzzling portion of Scripture, we must remember the initial words of the narrator: “And there arose another generation who did not know the LORD or the work that he had done.” You see, the children of Israel had become Canaanized-they embraced the culture and the culture embraced them. Two hundred virgins, abducted by perverted men, received no protection from their fathers. Why would any father allow his innocent daughter to be harmed by such heinous perversion?

It all begins to make sense when we see that two hundred fathers, lured by the Canaanites, had estranged themselves from the words and ways of God and had begun to do that which was right in their own eyes. They had embraced the Canaanite worship of Baal and Ashteroth. Shiloh, the worship center of God, had become a training ground for temple prostitution. No longer could they see this unspeakable perversion through a godly lens; they had become desensitized, losing all discernment.

The parallel to our present culture is frightening. The idols that had enticed sexual fantasies, Baal and Ashteroth, were no different than our American idols today. Today’s sex-saturated entertainment has so desensitized us that, as parents, we have lost our ability to discern. We often sacrifice our children on the altar of our own pleasure seeking and self-centeredness.

So what can we learn from the dancing daughters of Shiloh? As God-fearing fathers, we need to rise and act like men. We need to be vigilant and protect our daughters and sons by destroying the Hollywood idols that present the sacredness of sex as lurid fantasies that distort what is pure and priceless.

Published in: on March 9, 2011 at 7:33 pm  Leave a Comment  

Inspiration & Motivation

Recently, I wrote to someone who wondered if the Guild would offer anything related to his particular field. Though he asked about authorship and illustration, two disciplines we are not offering this first year, I thought you might be interested in my response as to why the Guild may benefit even those folks who do not sense a particular calling to the dramatic or visual arts.

This week will provide you with an experience that will inspire, motivate, and cultivate in you a vision for excellence in your God-given abilities. As I look back on 33 years of ministry, I can see how my experiences with Godly and creative people made a considerable contribution to my life. Events such as the Guild are rare–the experience of rubbing shoulders with such highly skilled individuals will have an accumulated effect upon your mind and vision for your future. Being around creative masters such as these has a way of helping individuals break through the barriers that often keep people addicted to mediocrity. I have found that most people need a breakthrough in their vision for the future–what will they do? Where will they go? How will they get there? These questions will be addressed at the Guild. Come to cultivate your relationship with God so that you can reflect his image in ways you have not considered before.

Published in: on March 9, 2011 at 4:30 pm  Leave a Comment