The Examination of a Candidate to be a Church Member

To determine the suitability of his membership in a local Church



A church council was examining a candidate for membership. One of the questions they asked him was, "What part of the Bible do you like best?" "I like the New Testament best," he replied. "What book in the New Testament?" "The book of Parables." "Would you kindly relate one of those parables to us?" So the uncertain candidate bluffed as follows:

"Once upon a time, a man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, and the thorns grew up and choked him.

And he went on and met the Queen of Sheba, and she gave him a thousand talents of gold and silver, and a hundred changes of rainment. And he got in his chariot and drove furiously. And when he was driving along under a tree his hair got caught in a limb and left him hanging there.

And he hung there many days and many nights, and ravens brought him food to eat and drink. And one night while he was hanging there asleep, his wife, Delilah, came and cut off his hair, and he dropped and fell on the stony ground; and it began to rain and it rained forty days and forty nights, and he hid himself in a cave.

And he went on and met a man who said, "Come in and take supper with me," but he said, "I cannot come, for I have married a wife." And the man went out into the highways and byways and compelled him to come.

He went on and came to Jerusalem and he saw Queen Jezebel sitting high up in a window. When she saw him she laughed. And he said, "Throw her down out of there," and they threw her down. And he said, "Throw her down again," and they threw her down seventy times seven times, and of the fragments they then picked up twelve baskets full. Now whose wife will she be in the day of judgment?"

There was no one in the council who felt qualified to question the candidate further for each council member suspected that his own unorganized Bible knowledge was as sketchy as that of the candidate. The man was voted into the church.