G. E. Reynolds (1949– )
Shamgar eviscerated six hundred well-armed
Philistines with an unlikely ox goad, and he,
Unlikely too, named for a goddess, and harmed
By his lineage, yet set unworthy Israelites free.
The unpredictable God of Abram’s people
Entered history in so many surprising ways
To confound our wisdom with his pull
Against history’s pattern of ordinary days.
Then a carpenter’s son with his calloused hands
Shocked all sensible sinners with his words
And works that shook their lives from all lands
As he hauled a cross, most powerful of swords,
More unlikely than Shamgar with his goad
He went into the dark abyss to win us
To his lovely ways, unlike our own road,
To strengthen us against the serpent’s crush.