At the premier of a new play [in the era of Stalin] “Christ in a Fur”, the hall was overcrowded. The actor Alexander Rostovtsev had to play the main role. He belonged to the high circles of soviet life and was a convinced Marxist.
On the stage was a mockery of an altar. The cross on it was made of bottles of wine and beer. Full glasses surrounded it. Fat “clergymen” said a drunken ”liturgy” consisting of blasphemous formulas. In this sham church, “nuns” played cards, drank, and made ugly jokes while the “religious service” went on.
Then Rostovtsev appeared as Christ, dressed in a robe. He had the New Testament in his hands. He was supposed to read two verses from the Sermon on the Mount, then throw away the book in disgust and shout, “Give me my fur and my hat! I prefer a simple proletarian life.”
But something unexpected happened. The actor read not only two verses, but continued, “Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth” ( Mat. 5:5), and so on to end of the sermon (Mat. 7:27). It was in vain that the director made desperate signs for him to stop.
When Rostovtsev came to the last words of Jesus, he made the sign of the cross in the Orthodox manner, and said, “Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy Kingdom” (Luke 23: 42), and left the stage. He was never seen again. The communists disposed of him. Let us like this actor, forget the ugly roles imposed upon us by the world and allow ourselves to be enraptured by the beauties of the Savior’s words.
Richard Wurmbrand, Reaching Toward the Heights, Zondervan 1977
there are two toady men
sitting at a black formica topped
table, in a college cafeteria,
they calmly discuss Armageddon,
how Russia will start it,
where Egypt will move,
what Israels plans and counter plans
will be, they speak of the various
contingencies of this country, they
are adamant about biblical prophecy
that foretells all of this.
their movements are of an inert
manner, with one of the hands
& a self-assured sweep
of the table, crumbs &
Hawaiian islands leave the face of the planet,
a fist pounds down and Baghdad is gone,
the table where they sat
is still very much
intact after they have left
given present technology
& political uncertainty, it is possible;
however is not prophecy in any form the
basic psychic emetic for the doom foretold?
a deep gut wrenching, face straining puke
for the advent of what may be averted
instead of synchphatic applause
for everyone’s untimely funeral?