“Through Gates of Splendour”

Many years ago when I was a teenager and the family was on holiday in Cornwall we visited a church which had a bookstall. My mother bought a copy of the book “Through Gates of Splendour” by Russell T. Hitt. This is the story of Nate Saint of Missionary Aviation Fellowship (MAF), and his fellow missionaries who were martyred by Amazonian Indians then known as “Aucas” in Ecuador in the 1950s. Unfortunately, by the time my mother had read most of it she found that the penultimate section of the book was missing. By this time we had moved on and could not return to exchange it for another copy. The missing part contained the actual account of the murders of the missionaries. She was most disappointed. In recent years there have been a number of documentaries about those events shown on the Christian media as well as a film entitled “The End of the Spear.” For those who are not familiar with the story, after the men were killed the tribe was reached by the Gospel through Rachel Saint, Nate Saint’s sister, and others. Nate Saint left a widow and two small children. His son, Steve Saint, spent part of his childhood amongst the tribesmen who killed his father.
When we look back on our lives if we are honest we could all think of episodes which we would wish were missing from the story of our lives. Steve Saint must have wished many times that the death of his father had never happened. One of the Indians who had been most reluctant to come to Christ was Mincaye and he was responsible the actual death of Nate Saint. He came to regret that this chapter in his life had happened. There is an old hymn that has as its chorus the phrase “What sin?” The devil is known as the accuser of the brethren and will always try to raise our sins in the past. If we plead the blood of Christ then our sin is dead and buried. It will be as if that chapter in our lives never happened. There is a saying that if the Devil reminds of your past remind him of his future. Mincaye confessed his killing of Nate Saint to Steve Saint when Steve was a young man. Steve forgave him, so much so that Steve regards Mincaye as his step-father. I believe that when Mincaye dies and meets the Lord and is judged then because his sins have been forgiven then he will find that it will be as if that part of his life never happened.
David Rose. 2014

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About davidgrose

I am a Bible believing Christian, brought up in the Brethren Movement, and now find myself associating with charismatics even though I do not always agree with them. I am in full-time employment. I have interests in history and photography amongst others.
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