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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of “A Bird in the Hand is Worth Two in the Bush” (without using the actual phrase or literal example). (01/10/08)

TITLE: Jesus and the Tempter
By Linda Watson Owen
01/17/08


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No time or distance stood between our Lord and all the earth.
As Satan’s voice caressed His ears and whispered these sweet words,

“The only payment for these realms before you is so small.
Just honor me, and you will see, you will be prince of all.

Look now, and view the glistening sea of riches you can use.
Your every want, your least desire, will never be refused.

Imagine power vaster far than galaxies above.
It can be yours without the price of shedding your own blood!

You must agree that awful plan God handed down to you
is foolish and a waste of time, a waste of all that’s true.

How can it be that god above would bury His own son?
I thought you two were really close, but this is what he’s done?

That doesn’t sound like love to me, to let such worms like men
decide the shots, take all control, and plot your bloody end.

Now think this through, and look again at all I offer here.
Ah! Sights, and sounds, and tastes that thrill, all good things far and near!

You know you want it—know it should be yours if all were right.
And yet, this god who orders you picks pain to be your plight!

I know you better than this god who says he loves you so.
Let’s stick together, you and me. I understand, you know.”

Then Satan paused to read Christ’s heart where all these words now whirled
as Jesus’ eyes still lingered there upon the whole wide world.

Christ saw the kingdoms, sullied, dim, though golden they had been.
There people bent beneath the load of guilt, and fear, and sin.

He saw small children too soon old, the old too soon cast out.
He saw the innocent descend into dread hopeless doubt.

His eyes were filled with past and future spread across the land.
He felt the horrid sadness of a world in sin’s command.

The words He heard from Satan’s lips yet echoed in the air,
but Jesus saw all as it was without sin’s gold veneer.

Christ’s breaking heart spoke strong and clear, “Be gone, vile enemy!
It’s written, ‘Worship God alone. Obey His Word only!’”

Then Satan fled to fairer fields where weaker hearts would bend
to listen to his saccharin words that would call him their friend.

But Jesus set His face toward the path to Calvary,
full knowing well the price He’d pay to set his people free.

The choice was clear, but never easy, that our Lord would make.
He chose to keep God’s plan for us, enduring all the pain.

He turned His back on tempter’s wealth, the promise of mere things,
rejected being Prince of ease, to be our Holy King.


(based on Matthew 4:8-10)


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This article has been read 817 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Verna Cole Mitchell 01/19/08
I enjoyed your poem that reminds us of Christ's rejection of Satan's temptation. How blessed we are!
Joanne Sher 01/20/08
Deep and engaging - you sure covered it. Excellent.
Paula Titus 01/21/08
I love this - so sincerely you show how our Lord gave up all! Beautifuly done.
LauraLee Shaw01/22/08
This is very powerful. I love the way you put God's name in small letters when Satan was talking and in capital letter when Jesus was speaking. Excellent piece!
Sally Hanan01/22/08
This is what we need to hold up as a standard for rhyming poetry--syllables, rhyming words, stanzas--all perfectly aligned with deep meaning.
Debbie Roome 01/22/08
This verse really struck me. "The words He heard from Satan’s lips yet echoed in the air,
but Jesus saw all as it was without sin’s gold veneer." Well done.
Gerald Shuler 01/22/08
This would make a wonderful Christian recording.
I am so glad Jesus didn't fall for the "two in the bush" lie... after all, the "one in the Hand" was us.
Holly Westefeld01/22/08
Nicely done.
Julie Ruspoli01/22/08
What a wonderful poem.
So many great words put together perfectly. This was so pleasant to read and the message is outstanding.
Marvelous!!
Debbie Wistrom01/22/08
WOW is all I can say.
Karen Wilber 01/22/08
This is the ultimate "bird in hand" example. An amazing poem. Everybody ought to read this one.
Jan Ackerson 01/22/08
Love your 14-syllable lines, not often seen in poetry. Great job, as always, with all of the tools in a poet's toolbox!
Dee Yoder 01/22/08
Great poetry. The message that Jesus faced the ultimate temptation to take something "better" over what humanity needed Him to do is defined beautifully.
Beth LaBuff 01/23/08
Wow, I love it! What a PERFECT illustration of the topic. Again your word choices are beautiful. I love these final lines,
"He turned His back on tempter’s wealth, the promise of mere things,
rejected being Prince of ease, to be our Holy King." I especially enjoyed the "Prince of ease"...I did a double-take at that, but it's perfect. He couldn't be both "Prince of Peace" and "Prince of ease". I'm glad He chose the path he did. Absolutely perfect!!!