Break the Arm of the Wicked Man

As countless thousands pray for the end to the bloody violence along the border of United States and Mexico, I wonder how God will answer our prayer?

Several weeks ago as I was praying and meditating about the violence, I read these words in Psalm 10

12 Arise, LORD! Lift up your hand, O God.
Do not forget the helpless.
13 Why does the wicked man revile God?
Why does he say to himself,
“He won’t call me to account”?
14 But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted;
you consider their grief and take it in hand.
The victims commit themselves to you;
you are the helper of the fatherless.
15 Break the arm of the wicked man;
call the evildoer to account for his wickedness
that would not otherwise be found out.

As I read these words I could identify with the plea “break the arm of the wicked man.” This intercession called on the God of heaven to come down to bring justice to the land, and to defend the fatherless.

A few days ago, Mexican police officials announced the capture of Arturo Gallegos Castrellon, alias “El Farmero,” who claimed to be responsible for 80% of the deaths in the drug war on the streets of Juarez including gunning down  American Consulate workers, and a massacre of fifteen teenagers at a birthday party. If he is telling the truth there is the blood of hundreds of people on his hands.

Of course  the officials celebrate this capture, but they know all too well there is another violent leader waiting in the shadows. We need to pray that those who take his place will not have the thirst for revenge and violence that “El Farmero” possessed. We need to pray these men and women plotting violence will see vividly the bloody road they have chosen, and turn away from the violence for the sake of their families and community–for their very own lives.

At Christmas, we celebrate the coming of the “Prince of Peace” into our world as a tiny homeless baby wrapped in swaddling clothes. When God confronted the violence of our world, He chose not to move in power and force, but rather love and grace.

The bloody cross of Jesus confronts us with the realities of hatred and violence. The cross also reveals the glory of grace and love. I pray Arturo will come to faith in Jesus. I pray he will turn from his wicked ways. I pray he will find love rather than the wrath of God.

We must not forget the LORD is not powerless, and as the Psalmist wrote:

16 The LORD is King for ever and ever;
the nations will perish from his land.
17 You, LORD, hear the desire of the afflicted;
you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,
18 defending the fatherless and the oppressed,
so that mere earthly mortals
will never again strike terror.

I pray for the day when “mere mortals will never again strike terror.”



Filed under Border Journal

4 responses to “Break the Arm of the Wicked Man

  1. SCUBA Man


    TWO THOUGHTS I want to run by you. I would be grateful for some feedback fromy ou as soon as you have time.. Good day.

    (1) Are you willing to have your name presented to the new and soon-to-be-functioning B.G.C.T. Executive Director Search Committee? There are many who would support such a nomintion, I’m sure. Who could or would make the formal and official nomination that would be required to get your name before the Search Committee? Well, I would but … I am a nobody, and no one would listen to me. But, there are a few some bodies who will want to do just that. So, what do you think? Pray. Consult God and others. Consider. Decide. Let them know.

    (2) If you say “NO” to your name being presented, would you support the name of Dr. Rick Davis being presented to the Search Committee? As the former BGCT President your support (or at least a positive word from you) would go a long ways. Again, pray and feel free to reply in your blog or my e-mail if you want to keep it private. Thanks for replying to both #1 and #2.

  2. Dear Scuba Man,

    My email is

    Please send me an email with your contact information and I would be glad to visit with you.

    Thanks for the high compliment.


  3. Dear Scuba Man,

    David Montoya highlighted our conversation on his blog. Here is my response to him. I trust this will be helpful to you.

    God called me to be the pastor of FBC El Paso. I vividly remember my calling. It was incredibly hard to leave the people I love in Canyon and to move my family to the borderland. I have grown to love the people of FBC El Paso and ministry along the border. I wake up each day with endless opportunities to try to make a difference for the sake of the Kingdom. God is moving among us for which I am profoundly thankful. My church had gone through a number of very difficult lean years. It is exciting to see new life bubbling up around us.

    I am not seeking the position of Executive Director of the BGCT. To be open with you and your readers, there was a day I desired that post of leadership. I was recommended to the committee that called Randel Everett three years ago. I was never interviewed and to my knowledge I was never seriously considered. I totally agree with you that it is highly unlikely that God would call me to the responsibility of leading the BGCT. I am at peace with this, and I trust the Lord. His timing is always right.

    As you know as a pastor, you cannot lead your people effectively with your eyes on another field of service. The challenges and opportunities in El Paso are vast. The need in my city and in my church are extensive. The need to reach across the border to Juarez with love and hope are endless. I am deeply humbled God called me here to serve Him. My wife, daughter and I have planted our hearts here because that is the lonely way I know how to lead and serve.

    Like you I want what is best for the BGCT. I pray for the day when the BGCT will be all God longs for us to be together. I suspect the future of our convention will be shaped more by the courage and innovation of our churches on the front lines than by leaders back at headquarters. The highest post in the Kingdom is the local church and always will be. We dare not forget that the local church was Jesus’ plan to change and transform the world.

    Concerning serving on the search committee, I would be honored to serve, but I also trust the judgment of those making the appointments. I dare not worry about things I cannot control.

  4. Can you imagine what would happen if men like this God a desire for God and used their talents for him instead of destruction of the human race?

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