Dream word – DISCERN
“There were giants on the earth in those days...” NKJV.
Giant monkey business
Of course it is reputed to be the great American huckster, PT Barnum, who is attributed with the quote that, “There’s a sucker born every minute!” Investigation seems to indicate however, that the observation is in fact attributed to David Hannum, a banker and wheeler dealer who was the leader in a syndicate backing the exhibition of the Cardiff Giant. Ahh! Now there’s a story.
In 1866, fraudster George Hull, after studying archaeology and palaeontology, found a very large block of gypsum that contained human vein-like striations. He secretly hired carvers to turn this block into a human like figure, who had obviously died in agony whilst being turned to stone. He then artificially aged the stone giant and buried it on an acquaintance’s farm in Cardiff, New York. A year later, he had a couple of workmen, who had been hired to dig a new well, “discover” the stone giant buried deep in the ground. Evangelists of the day had been preaching much around the country concerning our text for tonight and so it was quite easy to raise the ruse and ride it! Hull made thousands of dollars from people coming to view his giant fraud, and eventually the giant money-maker was purchased by a financial syndicate headed by Hannum.
The canny showman, PT Barnum, tried to purchase the giant for his own show for some $50,000 dollars but when the syndicate refused to sell, he made his very own, set it up, and then began charging a dollar a head for viewing the real giant and then had the audacity to call the Hull-Hannum giant a complete fraud! PT Barnum had more people than Hannum who were willing to pay top dollar to see his fraud of the fraud, especially clergymen and scientific folk, and it was at this point that Hannum is reputed to have responded to the incredulity with the words,“There is a sucker born every minute!”This month in 2008, the remains of a “Bigfoot” and associated non-human hybrid DNA samples, found encased in a block of ice in the remote Forests of the Northern State of Georgia were purchased for a similar PT Barnum sum of $50,000. When the purchasers thawed out the costly giant Sasquatch, they found it to be a rubber monkey suit peppered with meat from the deli counter! Yes indeed, there is a sucker born every minute.
I am a Charismatic. I am a man of the Word and of The Spirit and yes I believe in all the gifts of the Holy Spirit and of discernment in particular. Yet never in all my life, have I seen such a dearth of discernment within the church of the Living God and the associated courage to call a hoax a hoax! Never have I seen so many mislead mugs line up to give away their hard earned cash. I look at my fellow Charismatics, so sucked into the showmanship of many a “Christian” charlatan, that I have to take Hannum’s well-used observation and regretfully modify it by saying that “There’s a sucker born again every minute and most of them are Charismatic!”
Now these are very hard words of mine I know. But there you go. I am sick of picking up the pitiful pieces of the hurt hearts of disappointed disciples. We need to wise up here folks! We need to speak up! Here is an observation of mine tonight that will help some of you to avoid such hurt and such well-fleeced embarrassment. “Wolves might wear sheep’s clothing, yet they are always into fleecing you. So, watch your wallet and look closely at their bank accounts and lifestyle. They’re always a teller.”
The great apostles of old could rightly say this: “Silver and Gold have I none!”How about those slick-faced, smiling, sheep shearing, sharp teethed wolves? Nope, they cannot say that at all! So brother, sister, friend, go check ‘em out! And then please God, then go chuck ‘em out!
Listen: “And a certain man lame from his mother's womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms from those who entered the temple; who, seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, asked for alms. And fixing his eyes on him, with John, Peter said, ‘Look at us.’ So he gave them his attention, expecting to receive something from them. Then Peter said, ‘Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.’” - (Acts 3:2-7 NKJV)
Pray: Lord! Take us by our hand and strengthen our feet, so that they might not be turned out of the way, indeed, strengthen our ankle bones, that we might leap with joy, stand before Your holiness and walk in Your temple courts, giving a good testimony to Your true and never ending goodness. In Jesus name we ask it, amen!
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