Now here is perhaps the Cowboy version of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

It's 1865 and a cowboy and his trusty mount are out on the range working a large herd of cattle, making their way north up the Chisholm Trail from Texas to the Kansas Territory. Finally, when he finds a good place to bed the herd down for the night, he un-saddles his favorite horse and ties him up to a nearby tree, making sure he has plenty of grass and good water. The cowboy makes himself some grub over and open campfire and then, bone-weary, he beds down for the night himself.  He falls into a sound sleep as he listens to the coyotes yelping in the distance and the whippoorwills singing their night song.  And he thinks to himself as he gazes up at the nighttime stars, “”The life of a cowboy is all good.”

The next morning, as he is breaking camp and has finished his morning campfire coffee, he bends down for his blanket and his bedroll.  Suddenly, without warning, a big old timber rattler on a nearby rock strikes him a good one on the back of his right hand.  The cowboy shakes the big snake off and tries to suck the blood out of the well-spaced fang marks on his hand, but the wounds are deep and the poison has been injected real good.  He knows at this point he cannot save himself.  His only hope is to get into town as fast as he can and get to the town Doc that has the antidote.  He unties his trusty horse that prances in the cold morning air. He throws on his saddle and cinches it up tight and then mounts up swiftly and is off like a tornado across an open prairie. 

As he and his horse almost fly across the plain, he feels himself losing consciousness.  Finally he takes his lariat from his saddle and ties himself to the saddle horn.  He knows he has to stay on his horse or there will be no tomorrow.  Finally he slumps over the horse’s neck and mane, but his trusted partner gallops on.  Somehow this mighty steed that has come to think of himself as being one with his cowboy senses that he is being called upon to carry-the-day and get his cowboy through.  He races on through the heat of the day and the brutal blistering sun.  And just as the sun is setting, the exhausted horse, with his nearly-dead rider, comes galloping into the town.  The horse collapses as the town folk come running.  The horse has given everything he has for his cowboy’s life. The horse gasps for his last breath as he looks back at his cowboy and then the mighty steed lays his head down in the dust and dies. But the cowboy is still alive.  The people whisk him across the street and into the town Doctor’s office. The greatly swollen hand tells the story.  The Doctor gives him the vitally needed antidote and then keeps vigil through the night at the cowboy’s bed side.  The cowboy has new life and he will live now for many more tomorrows.  Had it not been for his devoted horse who gave his all for the cowboy, the cowboy would never have been saved.

Partners, that’s the gospel of Jesus Christ, The snake is the sin that has struck every one of us.  The Bible says, “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” The horse represents Jesus.  Jesus gave His all on the cross to pay for your sins and mine.  The people in the town are the angels and the Doctor is our Heavenly Father who has the antidote for our sin.  That antidote is the blood of His Son, given on the cross for your snakebite.

Now if I were you, I think I would believe in a Jesus like that, that had given everything for me so that I could have many more tomorrows (eternal life).  

What do you think?  Come to the Cowboy Church and let’s talk about it. God is waiting to hear from you.

Pastor Dale E. Larison

Cowboy Preacher GttHCCC

(And yes, I saw the movie “True Grit”. The old one and the new one. Maybe that’s where I got the idea for this story, but it still works nicely.).

  September 2021  
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