Can You, O Man?
Can you, O man,
create a universe, an elephant or flea?
Can you, woman,
Read minds from here to eternity?
Can you, O man,
put rings ‘round Saturn
or form a baby’s ears?
Can you, woman,
Foretell tomorrow’s deeds,
Live longer than two hundred years?
Can you, O man,
Answer the riddles I have put in place?
Can you, O woman,
Feel the deer’s heartbeat when he’s chased?
Why do you, man and woman,
Live like your lives are all your own?
When will you bend your knees to my throne?
You wait and hesitate and try to cheat
When you know not the hour your heart won’t beat
My arms are strong, and tender, too,
And how they long to hold you
My arms are open
The road is narrow, straight,
You’re welcome here
Why, oh why do you wait?
Do you not want to see
The Riches inside my gate?
(Exodus 2:11, 12)
God’s leader who
Had high command
Had killed a man,
Hid him in sand.
1 Now Naaman was commander of the army
Of Aram’s king. He was a great man in
His master’s sight and highly thought of, for
Through him the LORD had given victory
To Aram. He was valiant as a soldier,
But he had leprosy. 2 Now bands from Aram
Had gone out and had taken as a captive
A young girl out of Israel, and she
Served Naaman’s wife. 3 She told her mistress, “If
Only my master would go see the prophet
Who’s in Samaria! He’d cure him of
His leprosy,” 4 so Naaman saw his master
And told him what the girl from Israel
Had said. 5 ABy all means, go,@ the king of Aram
Replied. AI=ll send a letter to the king
Of Israel;@ so Naaman left, and took
With him ten silver talents, and in gold,
Six thousand shekels, and ten clothing sets.
6 The letter that he took along to give
The king of Israel read: AWith this letter
I send my servant Naaman to you so
That you may cure him of his leprosy.@
7 The king of Israel, as soon as he
Had read the letter, tore his robes and said,
AAm I God? Can I kill and resurrect?
Why does this man send someone to me to
Be cured of leprosy? See how he tries
To pick a fight with me!@ 8 Elisha man
Of God heard that the king of Israel
Had torn his robes, and sent a message to
The king: “Why have you torn your robes? Command
The man to come to me and he will know
That there’s a prophet inside Israel,”
9 So Naaman went with his own horses and
His chariots and stopped beside the door,
The front door to Elisha’s house. 10 Elisha
Sent out a messenger to say to him,
“Go, wash in Jordan River seven times,
And your own flesh will be restored and you’ll
Be cleansed,” 11 but Naaman went away enraged
And said, “I thought that he would surely come
To me and stand and call upon the name
Of the LORD God, and wave his hand above
The spot and cure me of my leprosy.
12 Aren’t Pharpar and Abana, rivers of
Damascus, better than the waters of
Israel? Couldn’t I go wash in them
And so be cleansed?” He turned and went off in
A rage, 13 but Naaman’s servants went to him
And said, AMy father, if the prophet had
Told you to do some great thing, would you not
Have done it? How much more, then, when he tells
You, ‘Wash; be cleansed’!@ 14 So he went down and dipped
Himself within the Jordan seven times,
Just as the man of God had told him. His
Flesh was restored and it became as clean
As that of a young boy; 15 then Naaman and
All his attendants went back to the man
Of God. He stood before him and said, ANow
I know that there=s no God in all the world
Except in Israel. Now please accept
A present from your servant,@ 16 but the prophet
Replied, AAs surely as the LORD lives, whom
I serve, I won=t accept a thing,@ and though
Naaman urged him, he still refused. 17 AIf you
Will not,@ said Naaman, Aplease let me,
Be given as much earth as a mule pair
Can carry, for your servant never more
Will make burnt offerings and sacrifices
To any other god except the LORD,
18 But may the LORD forgive your servant for
This one thing: When my master goes inside
The Rimmon temple to bow down and he
Is leaning on my arm and I bow there tooB
When I bow down inside the Rimmon temple
May God forgive your servant for this.@ 19 AGo
In peace,@ Elisha said. Now after Naaman
Had gone a ways, 20 Gehazi, servant of
Elisha man of God, said to himself,
AMy master was too soft on Naaman, this
Aramean, by not accepting from
Him what he brought. As surely as the LORD
Does live, I will run after him and get
Something from him.@ 21 Gehazi hurried after
Naaman. When Naaman saw him running toward
Him, he descended from the chariot
To meet him and asked him, AIs everything
All right?@ 22 Gehazi answered, AEverything
Is all right, for my master sent me out
To say, ‘Two young men from the company
Of prophets have just come to me out of
The Ephraim hill country. Please give them
A silver talent and two sets of clothing.’”
23 “By all means, take two talents,@ Naaman said.
He urged Gehazi to accept them, and
Then tied up the two silver talents in
Two bags, plus with two clothing sets. He gave
Them to two servants, who took them on in
Front of Gehazi. 24 When Gehazi reached
The hill, he took the things the servants brought
And stored them in the house. He sent the men
Away and they left, 25 then he went and stood
Before Elisha, his own master, and
Elisha asked, AWhere have you been, Gehazi?@
Gehazi said, AYour servant didn’t go
Anywhere,@ 26 but Elisha said to him,
AWas not my spirit with you when the man
Got down from his own chariot to meet
With you? Is this the time to take some money,
Or to accept some clothes, or olive groves,
Or vineyards, flocks, or herds, or menservants
And maidservants? 27 Now Naaman’s leprosy
Will cling forevermore to you and to your
Descendants,@ then Gehazi had to go
From him; and he was leprous, white as snow.
In the bleak midwinter
In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
In the bleak midwinter, long ago.
Our God, Heaven cannot hold Him, nor earth sustain;
Heaven and earth shall flee away when He comes to reign.
In the bleak midwinter a stable place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty, Jesus Christ.
Enough for Him, whom cherubim, worship night and day,
Breastful of milk, and a mangerful of hay;
Enough for Him, whom angels fall before,
The ox and ass and camel which adore.
Angels and archangels may have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim thronged the air;
But His mother only, in her maiden bliss,
Worshipped the beloved with a kiss.
What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
Yet what I can I give Him: give my heart.