The Light of Life Magazine
A ministry of Christian writing

July 2011


Vijay Thangiah

In Proverbs 30:27 we read, "The locusts have no king, yet go they forth all of them by bands." The desert locusts are only three inches long and weigh two grams. A single locust can eat his weight in food every day! They have a top speed near 30 kmph, and they can cover 120 kms in a day. With a few others, they can ravage a country, devouring most edible things in their path.

A swarm of locusts covering 3200 square kilometers crossed the Red Sea in 1889, and was estimated to weigh 500,000 tons and contain 250 billion individual locusts.

God made the desert locust a special creature with a changing personality. It teaches us a valuable lesson about success and happiness in life. Ordinarily very reclusive and solitary, this animal minds its own business, ventures about only at night, and meets other locusts only for brief mating encounters. However, when the situation calls for it, they change dramatically in colour and even more drastically in social behaviour, becoming very friendly and group oriented, creating huge swarms for their mutual benefit. The wisdom to be learned is the advantage of numbers and unity. Solomon taught, "Two are better than one -- and a threefold cord is not quickly broken" (Eccl. 4:9-12).

There are four advantages to human society, or the gathering of individuals into a group (Eccl. 4:9-12). First, they can share the rewards of labour and prosperity. Second, when one has difficulties, the others can help him. Third, their different abilities are synergistic and result in greater productivity. And fourth, they can defend against greater enemies.

The need for community-that is the lesson here. The Old Testament speaks of the covenant people of God. The New Testament speaks of the Church. What this tells us is that while we must have a personal faith, we can never have a merely individual faith. You, in other words, cannot be a Christian alone.

When Christians unite for a common purpose, there is little they can't accomplish. That is why Satan wants to bring division into God's Church. A grizzly bear is much stronger than a Lion, but the Lion is king of all Beasts. Why is this? Because Lions hunt together. Five lions could conquer one Grizzly. The Grizzly bear is a loner. No other bears would come to help. Jesus chose 12, not just one. God wants His people to work together. "Forsake not the assembling of yourselves together" (Heb. 10:25). The modern word for this is Synergy. We need others. Success comes in a relationship, not a vacuum. You are saved by a close Relationship with Jesus Christ.

Think of Jesus sending out His disciples. He sent them out two by two. Or, think of the Apostle Paul. He never travelled alone on His missionary journeys. And, in every city in which He established a church, He depended upon local people to help him.

Without a community you are not going to make any impression upon this culture. It is Christians as a community, and not as individuals, that are called to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world. God never calls us to service or ministry that we are to do by ourselves. What we do, we do as a body, as a community. That's why we are part of a church.

Ask yourself, do you have a locust's wisdom? Do you understand the value of human society? Are you building your church? Enhancing your company? Do you know how to modify your individual tendencies to serve the group's needs? The locust teaches us these things, and he does not need a king to force him to do them. He does them by obedience to his Creator!

The story is told of a man who visited an asylum for the criminally insane. He was a bit surprised to find that only three guards were assigned to take care of a hundred inmates. He said to one of the guards, "Aren't you afraid that the inmates will unite, overcome you, and escape?" The guard said, "Lunatics never unite."

Lunatics never unite. But locusts do. And, Christians should-for if we don't, we can't accomplish much.

Don't be like a lunatic. Be like the locust.

Light of Life