"AS I SEE IT" 

Volume 13, Number 3, March 2010

 

“I too will have my say; I too will tell what I know.

For I am full of words, and the spirit within me compels me;

Inside I am like bottled-up wine, like new wineskins ready to burst.

I must speak and find relief; I must open my lips and reply.

I will show partiality to no one.  Nor will I flatter any man.”

Job 32:17-21

 

“That which ordinary men are fit for I am qualified in, and the best of me is diligence.”

Earl of Kent

Shakespeare’s King Lear

Act I, scene iv, ll. 32-34

 

[“As I See It” is a monthly electronic magazine compiled and edited by Doug Kutilek.  Its purpose is to address important issues of the day and to draw attention to worthwhile Christian and other literature in order to aid believers in Jesus Christ, especially pastors, missionaries and Bible college and seminary students to more effectively study and teach the Word of God.  The editor’s perspective is that of an independent Baptist of fundamentalist theological persuasion.

 

AISI is sent free to all who request it by writing to the editor at: DKUTILEK@juno.com.  You can be removed from the mailing list at the same address.  Back issues sent on request.  All back issues may be accessed at http://www.KJVOnly.org

 

All articles are by the editor (unless otherwise noted) and are copyrighted but may be reproduced for distribution, provided the following conditions are met: 1. articles must be reproduced in unedited, unabridged form; 2. the writer must be properly credited; and, 3. such reproduction must be for free distribution only.  Permission to distribute in any other form must be secured in writing beforehand.  Permission for reproduction in Christian print periodicals will generally be given upon request.]

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Captain Matthew J. Kutilek, USMC--“Alive and Kicking”

 

It was 4:00 a.m. on March 5, 2010.  The ringing telephone startled us awake from deep sleep.  A call at such an hour, while not common, is regularly someone from the dialysis clinic that my wife Naomi administrates, reporting a problem with equipment as they prepare to open the facility for the day.

 

But the voice was that of our Marine Captain son Matthew, who had been in Afghanistan since early last October.  Seeming a bit groggy, or perhaps weary (we would soon be able to tell which), his first words were, “I’m okay.  I just got out of surgery.  I’ve been shot in the leg.”  He had our full attention.  He went on to say that he had been on a dismounted patrol in hot pursuit of Taliban fighters, and had taken a single rifle round in the right leg, in the shin.  He passed the phone on to a nurse who briefly detailed his injuries and assured us that he would recover.  He was soon to be flown out from Camp Dwyer where he received the initial treatment to a larger base for further care.

 

This wound was received scarcely four hours earlier in the southern reaches of the Helmand province of Afghanistan where he and his men were the “tip of the spear” interdicting infiltrating fighters and supplies coming into the province from Pakistan, just over two hours further south.  They were the first line of offense against them, and operating further south than any U.S. forces had been since the war began.  As soon as Matthew was hit, he was immediately and quickly cared for by Navy Corpsman Huong “Doc” Thai, who packed the wound, applied pressure bandages, applied a tourniquet on the upper thigh, and gave Matthew a couple doses of morphine.  In short, he saved him from a fatal bleed-out.  His radio man re-directed an already in-coming medevac chopper to pick him up.  Then First Sergeant Charles R. Williams, a mountain of a man at 6’2” or 6’3” and 265 pounds, threw the crippled Captain over his shoulder and hurriedly carried him some 150 yards to a safe landing zone out of the line of fire on the back side of a building.  The helo pilot soon swooped in, retrieved his human cargo, and in short order delivered him to the forward field hospital about ten minutes after the wound was received. 

 

About four hours after Matthew’s first phone call home, we received our “official notice” by phone from a Marine gunnery sergeant at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, informing us of Matthew’s wound; he, or rather, the information provided to him, mistakenly indicated that it was Matthew’s left leg that was injured.  We spent the day in anxiety, prayer, and tears and in sending out hundreds of e-mails and making numerous calls to family and friends requesting prayer for Matthew.  We were on needles and pins until we heard from Matthew again, this time at 11:00 p.m. Kansas time.  He was clearer and more forceful on the phone.  He had had a second surgery, and was now at Camp Bastion, a British facility.  From there, he would soon go to Bogrom Air Base, and then fly out to Germany and ultimately to the States.  We spoke to a nurse who detailed his injuries: a badly broken tibia, and considerable damage to blood vessels, nerves and muscle in his right calf.  All told, from the first wounding through the second surgery, he had been given seventeen units of packed cells or whole blood.  For the first time we understood that he had nearly bled to death.

 

And then we heard nothing more from him for about 40 hours, and knowing all the things that can potentially go wrong after traumatic injury and emergency surgeries--blood clots, a sudden bleed-out from an artery, infection, poor circulation requiring amputation, and more--we were concerned, no, distressed, until we heard from him again on Monday.  We did receive a call at the house on Saturday afternoon from a Brigadier General in Afghanistan who knew Matthew personally and had gone immediately to visit him when he discovered that he had been wounded.  The General assured us that he was doing fine and would soon be on his way to Landstuhl in Germany.  This was quite encouraging, but we had to wait almost 30 hours more for further news.

 

Meanwhile, we learned of available assistance provided to families of wounded Marines by the Marine Corps and several non-profit organizations, including air transportation to and from Washington (or wherever the medical facility might be), ground transportation from the airport, lodging and meals at no expense for up to three family members for as long as the Marine was hospitalized, and more.  We would soon be experiencing personally the high level of concern and support that these people and organizations provide.

 

Finally we learned that Matthew had arrived in Germany on Monday and was scheduled to fly out Tuesday to Andrews Air Force Base near Washington, D.C., to be driven from there to Bethesda Naval Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland.  Due to potential delays, cancelled flights and other complications, no travel to Washington could be booked for us until the flight from Germany was actually in the air.  So we waited and waited and waited.  Finally, we were informed that the flight had indeed been delayed due to weather, and then cancelled outright by a mechanical problem that could not be resolved.  So, Matthew, having spent 12 uncomfortable hours on a stretcher on the plane waiting for the flight to begin, was taken off and returned to the base hospital.

 

Wednesday, the doctors in Germany decided that Matthew needed surgery right away and could not wait until he arrived in the States, so they put a metal plate and about nine screws in his leg to stabilize and set the shattered tibia.  The next possible flight to the States would be Friday. 

 

More waiting, and packing and waiting occupied us until Friday.  Finally, early in the morning we were informed that Matthew (along with several other wounded men) had indeed taken off in a C-17 Air Force plane and we could now make travel arrangements.  Because of college spring break, it was impossible for us to get any flight out of Wichita until Monday at the earliest.  The best the travel people could come up with was our driving three and a half hours to Kansas City, taking a flight through Chicago, and arriving, if our flights were not cancelled, well after midnight, with no chance to see Matthew until Saturday at the earliest.  One of the vice-presidents at DaVita, the kidney dialysis company for which Naomi has been a facility administrator for more than a decade, learned of our situation and promised to see if a private plane could be chartered by the company to fly us directly to Washington.  In just 30 minutes, all was remarkably set up--a Cessna Excel would fly us directly from Wichita to Dulles outside of Washington.  We would depart in mid-afternoon (just four hours later).  These arrangements allowed for our older daughter Rachel and her infant Leah to go as well.  On the flight, I conversed with the two pilots, both in their early- to mid-thirties, discovered that they were fellow-believers, and one in particular had been studying lately and in depth the question of when the rapture would take place in relation to the Tribulation period.  At Dulles, one pilot even assisted us in carrying our bags to the car.  Though I am a writer of long experience and am rarely at a loss for words, words fail me to adequately express the gratitude and deep appreciation we feel toward the people of DaVita who went far beyond “the extra mile” to see that we were able to get to be with Matthew almost from the moment he arrived and were spared all the worries and troubles our travel would otherwise have presented.

 

We landed at Dulles about the time Matthew arrived at the hospital, and were met and driven by a Marine gunnery sergeant the forty minutes or so through typically nightmarish D. C. Friday night traffic--and it was raining, besides--to Bethesda Naval Hospital.  We checked into the Naval Lodge, where we had two rooms reserved (and provided at no expense to us by the Semper Fi Fund, and for as long as we needed to stay), about a quarter mile walk from Building 10 were Matthew had been admitted an hour earlier.  In short order, we dropped off our bags, got back in the Marine van and were at the hospital and up to his fifth floor room by 8:20.  A relief it was to see him--his color was good, his spirits were good.  How different it might easily have been.  His wife, Andrea, who has been “holding down the fort” in Jacksonville, North Carolina, with their two daughters Emma and Lilly (and awaiting the birth of their third come May) during Matthew’s deployment, had been driven up by a friend earlier in the day and had been present when Matthew was taken off the bus and wheeled into Bethesda.  When we finally left the hospital for the hotel around midnight, some of our things were carried to the lobby for us by a Marine Lieutenant Colonel, who had been on duty since before 7:00 a.m.

 

Over the next week, he had his first physical therapy session--excruciating pain as the tendons, muscles, ligaments and joints of his right foot and leg were manually moved for the first time since the trauma of Friday the 5th, 9 days before.  Then the calf and foot were placed in a protective boot, which required that the foot which had been distended since the injury be moved to a 90 degree angle.  It was agonizing for him to endure and for us to watch.  He stood briefly and with assistance for the first time on Saturday (or was it Sunday? The days run together in my mind).  Over the next several days, he would progressively sit up in a chair, take his first walk with, as he put it, “an old man’s walker,” then upgrade to crutches, be wheeled about the building, and out of the building for some fresh air in a wheelchair.  He would visit several of his men who were also in the hospital being treated for wounds received in Afghanistan.  We were blessed to be able to spend 12-15 hours daily for nearly a week with him, caring for him, and meeting his every request and need.

 

He had his final(?) surgery--his 6th or 7th--on Monday the 15th, the doctors finally closing up the surgical  incision made in his leg in Afghanistan to prevent swelling, and taking a skin graft from his thigh to close it.  While the injuries to his bone, muscles, ligaments and skin are healing well, he has developed unrelenting nerve pain in his foot.  He describes it as a combination of a hundred needles, a taser shock, and fire.  So far, no long-effective treatment for it has been discovered by the team of doctors.  May God give them wisdom.

 

To my mind, the best “medicine” of all has been the visits from friends, including a number of class-mates and friends from the Citadel, where Matthew graduated in 2001 (some drove more than 7 hours to see him); former students from the Citadel when Matthew was the Junior Marine ROTC instructor there 2005-2008 (these drove up in several groups from Quantico, Virginia where they are now in The Basic School); a fellow student and also a former instructor at the Expeditionary Warfare School, also at Quantico, which Matthew attended 2008-2009; three of his men who served with him in the 1/8 in Iraq from July 2003-January 2004, who came as a group on a single day’s notice from Boston, northern New Jersey and Delaware; his gunnery sergeant from the 1/8 who drove up from Durham, North Carolina, and patiently waited almost 6 hours for Matthew to get out of surgery and the recovery room on the 15th; his other sister Sarah and her family who came up from Arkansas for two days; and many others beyond my limitations of space to mention.  And of course there have been visits by numerous generals (a couple of 3-stars), sergeant majors, master chiefs, a Deputy Secretary of Defense, and others.  On Tuesday, March 23, the Commandant of the Marine Corps, four-star General Conway, visited and presented Matthew with his purple heart.

 

Several times during our week’s stay, a church, a country club, and a private organization provided respectively three excellent meals on the floor for all patients, their families and hospital staff.  Adequate words of appreciation for the kindness and generosity of so many are hard to find.

 

We hope and pray that the nerve pain might be brought under control, or vanish altogether, so that Matthew will be able to be discharged and return to Camp Lejeune, even in the next week or so, but whenever that occurs, he still has several months of recuperation (besides the nerve pain issue) before he can put any weight on the leg at all, and months more before he can walk on it normally.  How--or even if--all this will affect his future service in the Marine Corps cannot be determined at present.  Your continued prayers for him and his wife Andrea as she ministers to his needs are solicited.  Regular updates on his progress can be found at: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/matthewkutilek, a web-site set up by his sister Sarah.

---Doug Kutilek

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A Brief Opinion Regarding the American Standard Version

 

Professor Kutilek:

A friend of mine, J----- S-----, made me aware of your work on translations.
I am wondering what your opinion is of the ASV-1901 as to its accuracy,
literalness, etc. I know it uses antiquated English but I would like to know
its strengths and weaknesses.

Sincerely,
R-----

---

Mr. D--------

 

The American Standard Version is an American edition, with a number of changes, of the English Revised Version--ERV--of the 1880s.  I became acquainted with it while in Bible college in the early 1970s through the recommendation of a couple of professors (I had previously been reading exclusively an Old Scofield KJV).  I adopted it about 1974 as my main reading Bible and read it regularly for perhaps 5 or 6 years (during which time I was in seminary and grad. school, studying Hebrew and Greek), completely wearing out my copy.  I set it aside for the NASB around 1980, and somewhat later, the NIV.

 

A comparison of the scholarship and scholarly attainments of the translators of the KJV and the ERV/ASV shows that the latter were much better qualified academically for the work of Bible translation than the former (I made such a comparison in “The Holy Spirit an ‘It’?  Unclouding the Issue” in As I See It 11:9).

 

As to its accuracy, etc.--it is certainly much more literal than the KJV, giving much closer attention to the translation of, among other things, the definite article (the KJV, under the influence of the Latin Vulgate, and because of the translators' greater familiarity with Latin than Greek, fails to express in English the force of the article dozens, maybe even hundreds, of times).  The ASV does fail (as did the KJV), however, to accurately translate the force of the definite article at Titus 2:13 and 2 Peter 1:1 in the text (Granville Sharp's rule), though it does accurately give the correct sense in the marginal variant translation.  The ASV also translates Greek and Hebrew words more consistently than the KJV, avoiding the excessive use of synonyms that marks the KJV.  There were dozens of passages where the KJV had left questions as to the precise meaning of the text unanswered in my mind, but which reading the ASV immediately clarified. 

 

The ASV is also commendable for using a revised form of the Greek text, rather than some form of the "textus receptus."  Whether one accepts the "Alexandrian priority" or the "Byzantine priority" view, it is certain that there are nearly a couple thousand places at least where the KJV / TR does not follow the original wording of the NT.  If, for example, it is certain--and it is--that Acts 8:37 was not an original part of Acts as written by Luke, then the translation should without hesitation follow that fact.  The ASV does.

 

The ASV also tends to translate the force of the Greek verb more consistently and accurately than the KJV.

 

The ASV updates much (but not all) of the KJV's archaic language.  The retention of the "thou, thee, thine," etc. is one of the abiding defects of the ASV.

 

The arrangement of the text in paragraph sense units in the ASV is very much to be preferred to the KJV practice of making each verse its own paragraph; and its setting up of poetry as poetry is also a plus.

 

There are some defective translations in the ASV, among them 2 Timothy 3:16, where this version supplies the "is" in the wrong place (on this point the KJV is correct); ERV translators Alford and Ellicott in their commentaries favor the ERV rendering there, and are likely responsible in part for it.  A footnote at John 9:38 refers to Christ as a "creature" rather than the creator.  I have never been able to find a source or explanation for this note.  The ASV refers to the Holy Spirit as “it” in Acts 8:16 (the KJV does so in 4 passages, though not in this one).  And in the OT, the KJV's LORD (all capitals, representing the Divine name YHWH, i.e., “Yahweh”) is rendered by "Jehovah" which is a pseudo-pronunciation of this proper name of God (combining the consonants of YHWH with the vowels of Adonay--this latter word is the word commonly substituted by Jews when encountering this name in Scripture, so as to avoid breaking the 3rd command, by the expedient of not pronouncing it at all).  While giving “Jehovah” as the name of God was done as early as the Reina Spanish Bible of 1569, it is still erroneous; I cringe every time I hear someone say it. (My preference: present it as originally pronounced in Hebrew--"Yahweh").

 

Were my use of the ASV a bit fresher in my mind, I could perhaps note other strengths and weaknesses.  Of course, the merits of the ASV have been largely preserved and improved on in the NASB (except that the NASB reverts to making each verse its own paragraph).

 

Before the production of the NASB and the NIV in the 1970s, it was common for conservative Bible scholars to extol the ASV as the best translation in English.  I have collected quotes to that effect from John Broadus, J. P. Boyce, B. H. Carroll, R. A. Torrey, A. T. Robertson, J. Barton Payne, Wilbur M. Smith, Noel Smith and R. V. Clearwaters, and could likely extend this list several-fold.

 

Finally: one of the reasons often invoked (in ignorance) by KJV-only enthusiasts to "prove" the KJV's supremacy is the supposed "fact" that the KJV is not copyrighted (of course it was copyrighted at its first printing, continued under copyright worldwide for about 170 years, and only after the American Revolution was the copyright ignored in America.  The KJV is still under copyright in England).  Well, the truth is, the ASV is today absolutely free from copyright--those who owned the copyright failed to renew it sometime in the 20th century, and today it is in the public domain.  So if not being copyrighted is proof of a translation's superiority, the ASV must be high on the list!

 

I hope this very brief summary of my views on the ASV answers your question.

 

Doug Kutilek 

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On 2 Kings 19:14 Again

 

[Note: we first addressed the question of the Hebrew text of 2 Kings 19:14 and how it was variously translated in Bible versions in several languages in As I See It, 13:1]

 

“Hi Doug,

 

This claims to be Matthew's Bible 1537 (obviously with spelling modernized).

 I got it at http://faithofgod.net/tanak/2ki.htm#19:14.

 

When Hezekiah had received the letter of the hand of the messenger

and had read it: he went into the house of the LORD and laid it abroad

before the LORD.

 

Differences with the 1560 Geneva Bible are with "messengers" and three "Hezekiahs" (vs. 1).

 

So Hezekiah receiued the letter [singular] of the hand of the messengers,

and red it [singular]: & Hezekiah went vp into the house of the Lord, and

Hezekiah spred it [singular] before the Lord.

 

 Thanks for all your great studies,

 

B--“

---

 

B--

 

Thanks for the link to the Matthew Bible.  It is not impossible that the posted form is correct--no doubt the Geneva consulted whatever English Bibles they could--and in the 1550s, only Matthew's, Coverdale's and the Great Bible were available.  So the reading could have passed from Matthew's (based on who knows what) to the Geneva to the Bishops to the KJV. 

 

However, I am hesitant to publish with confidence that this is "Matthew's" reading, since the posted form has been revised in spelling from the original, and possibly also in wording.  If I could find a good facsimile on line, then I would be confident.  Just yesterday, I had a letter regarding the Luther reading at 19:14, since this individual's "Luther" translation had singulars all through the verse.  My facsimiles, exact reproductions of the Luther 1534 and 1545 Bibles, enabled me to say with certainty what his version had.  I also have an 1882 American printing of Luther's version--it, too, has all plurals.  But my 1955 German printing of a "revised" Luther has singulars.  Hence the need to be sure that currently available editions of older versions are indeed trustworthy in the evidence they provide.

 

Doug

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BOOK REVIEWS

 

Exposing the Real Che Guevara and the Useful Idiots Who Idolize Him by Humberto Fontova. New York: Sentinel, 2007.  224 pp., $23.95, hardback.

 

Communist revolutionary and Castro cohort Ernesto “Che” Guevara (1924-1967) is universally idolized by the Hollywood and political left.  His iconic bereted and bearded visage adorns T-shirts, trinkets, jewelry and posters by the tens, even hundreds, of thousands, and is reportedly tattooed in an undisclosed location on a prominent Hollywood starlet’s body.  The ”Che Guevara” so lionized is in reality a “smoke and mirrors” image manufactured by Castro’s propaganda machine with the full acquiescence of the mainstream American media, and bears absolutely no resemblance to reality.  The more you know about the real Che Guevara, the more you are amazed by the credulity, gullibility, even willful ignorance of those who still sing his praises more than four decades after his just execution in Bolivia.

 

To hear Castro/ the New York Times/ Hollywood tell it, Che was a great intellectual, a great humanitarian, a great lover of the common man, and a selfless liberator of the oppressed masses.  In fact, almost the opposite is precisely correct.  Born in Argentina to a well-to-do family, he received some training in medicine but never became a physician.  He sought without success to stir up revolution in his native Argentina, joined a soon-to-fall revolutionary government in Guatemala, went to Cuba to join in the revolutionary activities of Fidel Castro where he, Che, proved an inept and courage-less comrade in arms.  Once Castro had come to power, Che was placed in charge of the just-nationalized Cuban banking system and the nation’s industries, and in short order turned the prosperous Cuban economy into the “scorched earth” basket case that it has remained for the past 50 years (I wonder if Obama and his economic team have adopted Che as their economic role model).  Notably, Cuban sugar plantation slaves in 1842 ate better than the average “free” Cuban does today.  And note also, that in today’s “class-less” Cuban society, 85% of the inmates of Cuban prisons are black.

 

Worse, Che was also the man entrusted with establishing Cuba’s internal security system for stopping and punishing all “counter-revolutionary” activity.  He oversaw the kangaroo court system (which, as regularly necessary, concocted evidence of guilt after the guilty verdict was in and in some cases, after the firing squad had done its work), the squalid and burgeoning prisons, and the summary executions by firing squad of multiplied thousands of the peasant “proletariat” the communist revolution in Cuba supposedly liberated.  Even children in their early teens were among those joyfully murdered by Che and his armed thugs.  Che had a wall in the prison compound removed, because it blocked the view from his office window of the firing squad executions that occurred daily, often by the dozens and occasionally by the hundreds.

 

Castro ridded himself of Guevara by sending him off in the mid-60s to participate in a budding revolution in Angola.  But after a few months there, it was obvious that he was not up to that task and went back to Cuba.  In short order, Castro re-shipped off Che, this time off to Bolivia, to incite revolution there.

 

Unfortunately for Guevara and his minuscule band of jungle-inhabiting “liberators,” none of the “oppressed masses” of Bolivia were in the mood to be “liberated” just then, and so his hoped-for revolution never got traction.  Much of his time there, while urging his comrades to live a stoic life of self-denial, for the sake of the revolution, he was accompanied by a mistress with whom he co-habited (she must have had a defective sense of smell, since Che reportedly never bathed; was he trying thereby to “identify” with “the great unwashed”?). 

 

After about a year of enduring his almost comically inept and incompetent leadership, his band was tracked down by the Bolivian army with himself arrested (that Castro deliberately betrayed Che’s location to the Bolivian army is highly probable--a typical communist “purge”).  In spite of all his bravado urging his men to never be taken alive, but to go down fighting, Che, unwounded, readily surrendered with a full weapon and then begged for his life.  He was hoping for a “show trial” with international attention and pressure from sympathetic leftist “intellectuals” for his release.  Instead, he was executed the next day by a military firing squad.  Poetic justice for a man who meted out similar “justice” to thousands at the point of a rifle. 

 

Now that he was dead and gone, Castro found it useful to create the Che myth of a self-less, kind, self-sacrificing intellectual whose only concern was for “justice” for those oppressed by greedy capitalists and aristocrats.  Official journals and biographies were issued by the communist government of Castro’s Cuba, their every word accepted by the willingly duped Western media (see for example the entry in Encyclopedia Britannica which accepts entire and uncritically all of Castro’s fiction regarding Che).  From this, the fable of Che was spun.  The present volume under review gives in brief compass the dark truth about the man as he actually was.

---Doug Kutilek

---

 

“All those who have experienced the hijacking of their nations to communism--from Cubans to Vietnamese, to Hungarians--know the archetype of the Communist Party member and activist: the failed professional who becomes the profession failure.  They resent being bested by others who are more talented, industrious, or virtuous.  So they nurture a malignant grudge against the world, or society, or ‘the system.’  Che himself was a failed physician.  Castro was a failed lawyer.  Behind them were legions of ‘Los Resentidos,’ the Resentful Ones.” [need I mention the Obamas as precisely fitting this description?--ed.]

Exposing the Real Che Guevara and the Useful Idiots Who Idolize Him, p. 129

 

“Revolutionary Cuba’s early minister of industries and bank president Che Guevara had quite a base to work with.  It usually requires an earthquake, volcano, tsunami, or atom bomb to match Che’s industrial and economic achievements in Cuba.  Indeed, Tokyo, Pompeii and Hiroshima have all recovered.  Havana, richer in the 1950s than Rome or Dallas, now resembles Calcutta, Nairobi, or Phnom Penh.  One place where Cuban exiles agree wholeheartedly with Castro is regarding his exalted post as a Third World leader.  He and Che certainly made Cuba into a Third World country.”

p. 158

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Churchill: Taken from the Diaries of Lord Moran: the Struggle for Survival by Sir Charles Wilson [Lord Moran].  Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1966.  877 pp., hardback.

 

Sir Charles Wilson (1882-1977), created the first Baron Moran in 1943, was the personal physician of Sir Winston Churchill from 1940 to the end of Churchill’s life in 1965.  He had served as a military physician in France during World War I (we ran a number of quotations from his book Anatomy of Courage, about the psychological effects of trench warfare on troops in World War I, in As I See It 12:12), and was president of the Royal College of Physicians, 1941-1950.

 

As Churchill became Britain’s Prime Minister in the dark days of 1940, Wilson was assigned to him with one responsibility: keep him healthy and alive (Churchill was then in his upper 60s, had for years over-eaten, smoked and drank to excess, and rarely exercised).  At first, they scarcely tolerated each other, but Moran soon gained Churchill’s confidence, and became a much trusted friend, sounding-board, adviser and confidante.  For the next quarter century, Wilson saw Churchill on a regular basis through his first (1940-1945) and second (1951-1955) stints as Prime Minister and beyond, often daily for extended periods of time, commonly weekly, and rarely at intervals as long as a month or more.  During the war, Moran accompanied Churchill on all of his overseas trips by plane or ship--America, North Africa, Tehran, Yalta, Potsdam and more--and treated him for pneumonia, a heart attack, and numerous other ailments during those exhausting and stress-filled years.  Later, he would nurse Winston back to health after a near-fatal stroke in 1953, the fact of which was very carefully concealed from the media and public until his recovery.

 

Moran may be characterized as Churchill’s “Boswell,” that is, his intimate friend who recorded in extensio his private conversation, moods, thoughts, opinions, ideas, eccentricities, hypochondria, illnesses, and all too frequent depressions.  And, as in Boswell’s account of Johnson, there are periods of great detail for consecutive days, but also significant gaps in the record for days even weeks on end.  As his personal physician, he was of course privy to a huge mass of highly personal medical information.  The long, slow and painful-to-behold decline in mental and physical energy in Churchill is reported in detail.  Indeed, an excess of candor and the betrayal of physician-patient confidentiality was the primary criticism heaped on Moran’s account, which appeared in print just 15 months after Churchill’s death.  Too soon for such exposes, it was affirmed.  At the distance now of 45 years, some of the details do appear as too candid for such immediate disclosure, though if delayed a decade or better two, they would not generate much controversy.

 

The value in Moran’s account is not as a broad overview of Churchill as a figure in history and great events of the mid-20th century (though naturally, there is much of that here, mostly as sidelight), but in revealing the private man behind the public persona.  Further, it is of note that where Moran begins--May, 1940--one of the best of Churchill biographies, that of William Manchester (vol. I, The Last Lion: Visions of Glory, and vol. II, The Last Lion: Alone) ends; Manchester’s projected third volume was abandoned due to the author’s advancing age and inability to complete the work.  So what we have lost by Manchester not completing his work is in part made up for by the publication--decades earlier--of Moran’s account.  Of course, there is the necessary caveat that the Churchill of Moran’s diaries is not the young, vigorous, energetic Churchill in his 20s, 30s, 40s and even 50s, but an old man in mental and physical decline.

---Doug Kutilek

---

 

“What other nation in history, when it became supremely powerful, has had no thought of territorial aggrandizement, no ambition but to use its resources for the good of the world?  I marvel at America’s altruism, her sublime disinterestedness.”

Winston Churchill

January 10, 1952

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Spurgeon and “What Would Jesus Do?” Once Again

 

Several years ago, we traced the origin of the phrase “What would Jesus do?” back more than a decade beyond Charles Sheldon’s book In His Steps (1896) to London Pastor Charles Spurgeon’s placing of these words as a framed motto in one of the orphanages which he started (see “The Real Origin of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ “ in As I See It, 8:8).  In that article we noted two passages in Spurgeon’s voluminous sermon collection where these words were referenced.

 

Recently Bob Ross of Pilgrim Publications sent us a compilation by Bob Canady (otherwise unknown to us) from Spurgeon’s sermons of a full ten places (including the two we noted) where Spurgeon quotes the words “What would Jesus do?”  So, as a service to our readers, we will give the full list of references as we received them (those we had previously noted are marked with *).

 

*“The Fair Portrait of a Saint,” sermon #1526, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 26, page 149

 

“Everyday Religion,” sermon #1599, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 27, page 287 

 

“Supposing Him to Have Been in the Company,” sermon #1724, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 29, page 319 

 

“Recruits for King Jesus,” sermon #1770, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 30, page 154 

 

*”The Private Tutor,” sermon #1842, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 31, page 293 

 

“Christ Put On,” sermon #2132, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 36, page 123                      

 

“The Agreement of Salvation by Grace with Walking in Good Works,” sermon #2210, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 37, page 347 

 

“Watching for Christ’s Coming,” sermon #2302, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 39, page 162 

 

“The Perpetuity of the Gospel,” sermon #2636, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 45, page 401 

 

“Peace! Perfect Peace!” sermon #3175, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 55, page 602    

---Doug Kutilek

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