Monday, June 3, 2013

Killer bees sting man to death in Texas

I read of a man who was killed by a vicious swarm of killer bees. Whenever someone dies, and whenever they die in an unusual way, I always think, 'were they saved? are they in heaven with Jesus now? Or in hell?' It is somewhat macabre way to be, I admit, but I also think that as we grow into Christ-likeness day by day we become increasingly concerned with souls. We worry about eternal destinations, and are wont to feel the burden of eternity more and more acutely not only for ourselves but for others too.

Then if the way they died was unusual, I think about their last moments. No one expects to wake up any particular morning and think that in a few hours they will be dead, unless they are in seriously late stage 4 cancer or something. No one thinks that this is the day that death will come for you. And if we do think about death, it is usually only in the usual ways and only if death is immediately near- there is a report of a tornado, there is slippery ice ahead, there is gunfire down the road...

Did Tsunami guy standing on the beach on Christmas Day expect to be overcome by the entire ocean? (2004)
Did Steve Irwin expect a stingray to pierce his heart with his stinger-barb? (2006)
Did Surinder Singh Bajwa, the Deputy Mayor of Delhi, India, expect to die after falling from his building's terrace while trying to fight off attacking Rhesus macaque monkeys? (2007)
Did Taylor Mitchell, a Canadian folk singer, expect to be attacked and killed by three coyotes, the only recorded adult person to have been killed by this species? (2009)
Did Larry Goodwin of Moody, Texas expect to die running from 40,000 killer bees and over 1000 stings which were covering every inch of his body?

"A Texas man was stung to death after he drove his tractor into a pile of wood that concealed a hive of 40,000 "killer bees," authorities and family members said Sunday. Every inch of exposed skin was covered with stings on the body of Larry Goodwin, 62, of Moody, Texas, family members told NBC station KCEN of Waco. Goodwin died Saturday when the Africanized honeybees swarmed him after his tractor struck a pile of wood that included an abandoned chicken coop where the bees had built their hive. The hive encompassed 22 honeycombs harboring an estimated 40,000 bees."

Even if you know death is coming you really don't know at which second it will arrive. And for the hale and healthy, like Mr Goodwin, it was just another day on his tractor, doin' stuff. Death isn't expected, nor invited.

But Jesus says that we have to be ready at any moment.

"There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:1-5)

In those short verses, Jesus said it twice. Repent or perish. That does not mean that the repentant never die, just that wen they do they acquire eternal life in the presence of Jesus. That the unrepentant can meet their eternal destiny- destruction in hell at any moment.

In the article there was something interesting reported after the news of poor Mr Goodwin's death was announced. The article states,

"Africanized honeybees — a highly aggressive hybrid of the Western and African honeybees — spread fear in the U.S. long before they arrived in the country from Central America about 15 years ago, fueled by alarming reports of their tactic of swarming their prey in the thousands and earning them the nickname "killer bees." While federal figures indicate that fewer than a dozen people have been killed by the bees in the U.S., they are anecdotally believed to be proliferating rapidly. Just 2½ months ago, on March 15, emergency crews were called out after thousands of the bees swarmed inside a family's home in Wichita Falls, Texas Allen Miller, a bee - removal specialist who cleared the giant hive Saturday in Moody, told KCEN that he's run into at least five cases of Africanized hives in the past month — more than he usually sees all year."

Sure enough, other news articles report the same.

KLAS-Las Vegas reports a Sharp Increase in Killer Bee Activity This Year
"The pest services technician destroyed the solid two-foot long swarm within minutes. It was the first of several killer bee extractions he did Thursday, and that's compared to two a week last year. ... If you ever discover a swarm or a hive, Villena warns not to make any loud noises or sudden movements that could trigger an attack. "Regular bees will chase you 50 yards. (Killer) bees will chase you at least a half a mile," he said."

This month an 88-year-old man in Las Vegas was chased and stung by killer bees. An Arizona hiker was found hanging dead by his ropes, after coming upon a hive he did not initially notice. This article says that killer bee attacks are on the rise but deaths from them are rare, but it was written before Mr Goodwin was killed a few weeks after the article appeared.

This next article is from a newspaper located in southeast Texas.

Experts say Africanized bee colonies ‘all stirred up
Gary Maley, owner of Advanced Pest Control in Harlingen, said he’s had five calls in the last six days to remove bee hives, after receiving no calls in the last four months. Two of the hives he removed were Africanized bee colonies, but none of these calls involved bee attacks. “I don’t know what’s going on,” he said. “The bee population’s down, but something’s got ‘em all stirred up right now. They’re not pollinating that much because there’s not that many flowers because of the drought, so I’m not really sure what.”"

Killer bees were first introduced in Brazil in 1956, as queens from Tanzania and South Africa were brought to Brazil and tested. In 1957, 26 queens escaped. They spread north 100-200 miles per year. They made it to south Texas by 1990.

1990: Southern Texas
1993: Arizona
1995: California
2005: Florida

Africanized honeybees now are reported in over half of Florida counties (as of 2011)




100,000 'killer' bees attack Florida park rangers
"Two park rangers in Tampa, Fla. were hospitalized after unwittingly disturbing a hive of what appear to be Africanized "killer" bees. David Zeledon and Rodney Pugh, were using a front-end loader to clear debris near the entrance of Picnic Island Park near Port Tampa. As they turned over a used truck tire, as many as 100,000 bees swarmed into their vehicle. The men fled, but not before getting stung almost 100 times."

As horrible as it was, more deaths like Mr Goodwin's will occur during the Tribulation when fourth seal is opened. I mean death by beasts.

"When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” And I looked, and behold, a pale horse! And its rider’s name was Death, and Hades followed him. And they were given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword and with famine and with pestilence and by wild beasts of the earth." (Revelation 6:7-8)

A quarter of the earth's population will die, and a quarter of them by beast (shudder).

Are you ready for death to come to your home? You are if you know Jesus. You know Jesus as friend and not enemy if you are aware you are a sinner, have repented of your sins by asking Him to forgive them, and that He is resurrected King and Lord who died for your sins, taking upon Himself the wrath of God that you deserved. John Piper said,

"What's the Gospel?

What’s the gospel? I’ll put it in a sentence.

The Gospel is the news that Jesus Christ, the Righteous One, died for our sins and rose again, eternally triumphant over all his enemies, so that there is now no condemnation for those who believe, but only everlasting joy.

That’s the gospel."

There is more here from the 6-min audio by John Piper.

Praise Jesus that even if our last moments are terrible like Mr Goodwin's, that we know that in a few further moments we will be entering glory forever with the wonderful Savior. I pray YOU are ready any day for death to arrive, and that it is only a portal to the eternal life in glory you will share with Him.

More about salvation here

13 comments:

  1. John Piper practices and teaches contemplative prayer. The same as Beth Moore. They need to be rejected as any other apostate false teacher.
    http://apprising.org/2012/01/16/dr-john-piper-on-contemplative-prayer/

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    1. Pastor Piper participated in a contemplative prayer exercise recently, then had a contradictory statement about it. Dr Piper has been a pastor for many years and though he appears to be sliding down the road of less solid theological stances, his slide has only begun recently and I am loathe to cast out a preacher after one or two instances or of short duration after many years of solid service. I am long on benefit of the doubt and short on tolerance with Mr Silva's Apprising attitude.

      Mrs Moore has been sliding down her path for more than a decade and has shown many instances of questionable doctrines and teachings. In my opinion, Moore and Piper are of different stripes. I do not wholeheartedly endorse Piper unilaterally, but do so with caution. His quote I used above on the Gospel is good.

      I do NOT endorse Apprising.org in any way and discourage people from consulting that site.

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  2. I have been wondering about Apprising. What are your reservations?

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  3. "I do NOT endorse Apprising.org in any way and discourage people from consulting that site."

    Hi Elizabeth, I was interested in knowing why you don't. I used to glance at the site every once in awhile, nothing ever jumped out at me during my time of viewing it. I stopped viewing it because I had other blogs to read and I never received a thank you for the donation and email I sent. I know that it is petty but a thank you goes such a long way and it struck me as weird that they never replied to the donation and email.

    Also I re: John Piper, I started to steer clear of him when I read that he "considers Mark Driscoll a friend" and has taken on a fatherly role with him. Kind of the whole birds of a feather stick together thing. I understand not casting him out though as you have stated to Jeff, just don't ever lose that discerning gift you have. It is truly one of the things I enjoy about you and your blog :)

    Marrell

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    1. HI Marrell, and m,

      Thank you for your encouragement. I agree about Piper, he is becoming questionable in his doctrines and has been less than discerning regarding his friends. I don't recommend him because there are so many other more solid preachers to consult, but I don't UNrecommend him- yet. He is on his way down the path but hasn't reached the point of no return for me.

      The slide toward apostasy is interesting. Sometimes it is fast, like Mark Driscoll's. Sometimes it is slow, like Billy Graham's. Graham's started in 1954, proceeded slowly until 1975 or so after Nixon debacle when Graham became bitter and disillusioned with politics- and men, and hastened to its finality in the 1990s when he publicly denied Jesus as the exclusive way to heaven several times.

      The question is, at what point does one abandon a teacher, or distrust their teachings? For me it is two things- a pattern over time of small missteps, and/or a rejection of one of the large foundational tenets of the faith.

      The thing is, unless someone flatly denies a foundational tenet of the faith, and false teachers rarely do right off the bat, we have to wait and see through the establishment of a long-term pattern in order to be certain of the path they are traversing.

      Jesus said you will know them by their fruits, and fruit takes a long time to grow and become fully ripe. False teachers appear to be godly, come in secretly, and cloak their teachings. Simon the Magician fooled even Philip, at first. False teachers masquerade. There are many verses which speak of the hidden-ness of a false teacher's work-

      (Gal 2:4, 2 Cor 11:13, 2 Tim 3:5, Mt 7:15, 2 Peter 2:1)

      One example is Graham. In the 90s when Graham denied the exclusivity of Jesus, MacArthur said that Grahams' stance was affirmed by the BGEA and had been Graham's stance since 1960 when he wrote of it in his Decision Magazine. That is what I mean by secret. It was something Graham believed for over 30 years in his public ministry but simply didn't write or speak of it widely. The iceberg didn't poke the surface of the water for a long time.

      I think it is respectful to an elder of our faith to be cautious, give the benefit of the doubt, and let the pattern establish itself, and finally to rely on the Holy Spirit as to when to make the declaration that so and so is false. After all, in a long lifetime and career as a teacher and or pastor, someone may wander but in His grace the Spirit might pull the person back. Who hasn't had some missteps once in a while?

      I don't believe discernment is about waiting hunched at the teacher's feet listening for some statement to be a little awry and then jump up and point and shout FALSE before he even finishes uttering it! While the study of the bible can be applied as a science, the discernment of a person's Christian work is less so, because they are human. Justin Peters is my Godly example here. Though Peters has spent his life in discernment ministries and has the hard and heartbreaking job of calling out false teachers, he does so with wisdom, caution, sadness, respect, and yet maintains his joy in the Lord and confidence of his faith.

      So as for Piper, no, I agree started wobbling in 2010 as far as I could tell. It is a sad and eternally tragic thing to see. I don't mock it and I don't lightly speak of it, either. Our work in discernment is not just to identify false teaches but to have a biblical response. We are told to stop listening, take no heed, shut them out of our homes, in some cases put them out of the church, ... it is no small matter. Some action must be taken after the identification is made. Discernment is not just about detecting. It all must be done through love and in love- with patience and wisdom.

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    2. Thank you for the well thought out reply Elizabeth. I read all of your comments here and you make some great points. I will certainly take them to heart :)

      Marrell

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  4. I absolutely agree with all that you have said here. Once again, proof that we must always keep The Lord, and not ANY man, on the throne. As for Apprising, when I first began seriously investigating some of the mega pastors endorsed by our now former church, as well as some (like Piper and Driscoll, in whom I had placed rather blind trust), I often came across articles by Apprising. The tone of many seemed snarky and unloving, but the information seemed on target. What are your thoughts?

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    1. Here are my thoughts.

      Discernment is about timing and tone, content and controversy.

      In my own opinion, a discernment ministry above all has to keep Jesus & the Gospel as the primary focus. A discernment person has to rely on the Spirit who gave the gift and thus remember to use it to edify the body.

      The issue of timing: We let the Spirit unfold a person’s works to the point where the Spirit individually settles us as to its flavor and ripeness. I don’t think it is helpful to hunch in wait for a person to be false. I am not a “heresy hunter”. I don’t look for it and I don’t seek it. Wolves and lions seek *us*, and when they and their heresies appear, we stand and resist. But the bible doesn’t tell us to go after them. Here is Darryl Dash from Canada who had a wise word on this topic (http://dashhouse.com/dashhouse/2011/6/7/how-to-respond-to-false-teaching.html)

      “It's sometimes hard to know how to respond to false teaching. Some of us have never seen a controversy we didn't like. Others of us tend to shy away from controversy and don't want to address false teaching even when we should. The book of Jude is a helpful resource. Here are some lessons I've been learning from Jude on how to respond to false teaching. Don't major on controversy. Jude addressed false teaching, but it was his second choice. He "was very eager to write to you about our common salvation" (Jude 1:3). Because of false teaching, he was forced to change his topic. It's a good reminder to us to major on the gospel as our first choice.”

      Good advice.

      As for tone: Many discernment bloggers, writers, and preachers become very mocking or sarcastic. For most of them this is due to a heartbreak of seeing what people say and do in the name of Jesus. It torments us and makes us crazy! But above all, we can’t let ourselves get sarcastic. Kenneth Koole wrote in The Standard Bearer about “sanctified sarcasm”-

      “The question arises not only when one considers what sarcasm is (an expression of mockery) and what it is used to accomplish (to hold up the views of another for ridicule)”.

      No, I don’t want to ridicule someone. Pointing out to believers that their work is false is hard enough- on them and on me and on the body. We don’t need to add mocking to that. Yes, Paul used a lite sarcasm in I Corinthians 4:8, but that’s Paul. I don’t trust myself to handle mocking or sarcasm properly. It is a two-edged sword I’d rather avoid altogether. I feel I would sin too easily.

      Koole says, “Sarcasm in the mouth of believers is to be reserved for special cases. It can easily be abused...This is so because of the special implications of sarcasm. It implies a severe assessment of those about whom you are speaking. ... One refrains from its use towards those being influenced and led astray by these persuasive liars. With such we must exercise patience, seeking to persuade by reasoning based on Scripture and the creeds.”
      Much more here, http://standardbearer.rfpa.org/articles/sanctified-sarcasm

      As for content: a discernment person should always point out falsity as a duty but also as a higher duty point to Christ. A lot of discernment bloggers forget that. It becomes obvious that they revel in the controversy.

      Finally, I believe that if I am unashamed about the Gospel, then I need to be public in all I do so that others can test ME. I use my name in all my blogs, and if I comment on others, I use my name. I live a public life. You can contact me via email which is listed. You can comment here on the blog. I believe transparency is important, not only because it is fair, but because it is a proper witness for Jesus. If I am unashamed then I am unashamed in all I do and say. No Anonymity here. With some other discernment bloggers, that is not the case. They cannot be contacted, they are less transparent. In that way, they become more of a sniper behind a bush than an armor-clad soldier of Christ in the midst of the Light.

      So those are my thoughts on discernment blogs, including mine.

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    2. That facts are the facts. Do we,(whosoever will) need accept that which is unacceptable to the head?
      The scriptures in multiple places are very clear about the handling of leadership that sins. When they fail to repent. EVERYONE is to move on like it or not. While they themselves (those who are doing the business of exposing evil) are responsible to the truth, but because they may not do that real well does it mean that the truth about what they are exposing is not the truth anymore?

      In the almost the same conversation Christ exalts Peter and tells him....
      Matthew 16:18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

      And then seemingly in a short time rebukes him saying...
      Matthew 16
      23 But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.

      We are ALL capable of screwing up the Lords work. And when we begin to thing that ANY man is "beyond" that. The enemy has quite a foothold on that person.

      Sorry, it is not my intention to rain on anybody's parade, but I will not "go along" with a charade.

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    3. Jeff, no one is asking you to 'go along' with anything. And no one is saying a man is unable to mess up the Lord's work. I don't know how you got that from what I said.

      However, I do urge patience, wisdom, and compassion. If you are to the point where you go away from his teachings, so be it. I'm not asking you not to. I am not there yet, though without a dramatic change it looks like I soon might be. It is really not a point to argue over, particularly since we both agree that his recent actions have become questionable.

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  5. What is John Piper's relationship with Rick Warren these days?? I think that would speak volumes.
    Never quite "got" John Piper, anyway.

    Pam

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    1. Hi Pam,

      Here is a link to a good article summing up things with Piper between 2008 and 2011.

      http://solasisters.blogspot.com/2012/02/does-rick-warren-still-get-dr-john.html

      As far as his relationship now with Mr Warren, I am sure that if you google it you will find may results that you can read which will likely answer your question.

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