Spider Fired, Butterfly Hired.

Source – JOURNEY TO JOY: The Psalms of Ascent, by Josh Moody

The story goes that in the 1960s a man decided to re-preach Jonathan Edwards’s famous sermon, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.” However, the preacher modified the sermon to better fit with the era. He entitled the sermon, “Seekers Who Lack Self-Esteem in the Hands of a Full-Esteem God.” In the original, Edwards preached to those who did not trust God: “You have offended him infinitely more than ever a stubborn rebel did his prince; and yet it is nothing but his hand that holds you from falling into the fire every moment.” Edwards described those who do not trust God as being like a spider hanging by a thread over a pit. Such preaching has always offended some and been misunderstood by others. It is said that the 1960s preacher decided that the spider analogy was too strong medicine for modern people and switched it to a butterfly: “Somewhere in the forest a butterfly was beautifying a rose by posing atop its petals. Her wings flapping to an unheard tune the trees seemed to be swaying to. A bee was humming to the melody of nature’s symphony as he dipped inside a wonderfully painted forest flower that seemed delighted to have such a distinguished visitor. Bluebirds were singing, crickets chirping and a possum was laughing in the gentle breeze. Heaven seemed to be saying, ‘You’re the most important creature in the woodlands . . . yes, you . . . and you . . . and you with the compound eyes.’”