By Larry Ray Hafley
Many have come, the article said, to “pay respects to the relics of St. Therese,” a Roman Catholic nun, whose bones are being carried around the world in a cathedral-shaped box (Houston Chronicle, December 7, 1999, A1). They also came to ask the dead “for their intercession to God on our behalf.” Such relics as dead men’s bones are “a very simple path to God.”
Neither the dead nor their bones can do anything for us, “for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest” (Eccl. 9:10). The spirits of the dead cannot assist us in any way (Luke 16:26-31).
When Stephen and James died martyr’s deaths, the apostles and brethren did not appeal to them for help when they fell into difficulty (Acts 7:58-60; 12:1, 2; 2 Cor. 1:8-11; 7:5; Phil. 4:13). David’s bones were in his tomb, which was known to the apostles, yet none of them appealed to David for his intercession unto God (Acts 2:29). Since they did not do so, why should we?
There is one God and one mediator, one intercessor between God and man, Jesus Christ (1 Tim. 2:5). “We have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1). We must “come boldly to the throne of grace” when we need help and not to the relics of the dead. At that throne of grace we will find abundant “grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16). “And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us” (1 John 5:14). “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you” (1 Pet. 5:7).
How profoundly sad it is to see otherwise intelligent people falling down before dead men’s bones and begging blessings. Such superstition is a veil over their hearts, blinding them to the light of Christ. It also serves as a barrier to unbelievers who are repulsed by such spiritual ignorance and superstitious mythology. They identify such foolishness as being representative of “Christianity.” Thus, the key of knowledge is taken away and multitudes are left to grope blindly down the broad way which leadeth 4626 Osage, Baytown, Texas 77521 LarryHafley@compuserve.com