Thursday, August 18, 2011

Fear the Lord and the King

My son, fear the Lord and the king,
and do not join with those who do otherwise,
for disaster will arise suddenly from them,
and who knows the ruin that will come from them both?
Proverbs 24:21-22

Reading these verses in my quiet time reminded me of a movie I watched the other day with my wife. Hannah told me we could get a Redbox rental and I could pick the movie. I had been wanting to watch a few different films, so when I checked out what was available, I saw The Conspirator.

The movie is based on the true story of the trial of Mary Surratt. She owned the boarding house where John Wilkes Booth and others plotted the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, among others. Though the plot largely fizzled out, the primary goal of killing Lincoln succeeded. Booth was killed. Most of the conspirators were captured. Except one. John Surratt, the son of Mary Surratt was still at large.

Mary had already been arrested for her connections with the crime. And she was aware of more than she cared to admit. Whether she was aware of the intent to kill is still a matter of debate. But the nation was in mourning and people in high places wanted a quick resolution to the lingering questions of motive and means.

These verses could have been shown at the beginning of the film. It certainly speaks to the reality that Mary Surratt faced as she was on trial for her role in the conspiracy to kill President Lincoln, Vice President Johnson, and Secretary of State Seward.

Her loyalties to family, and possibly her hatred of the North, led her down the path of opposition to the governmental authorities and the violation of God’s law. Disaster came upon the other conspirators quickly. “Who knows the ruin that will come from them both [that is, the Lord and the king]?” Watch the movie and find out!

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