Life appeared incomprehensible without Levi. In no way, could I ever be the impeccable man my brother was. “Honorable. Reliable. Protector. Friend. Son. Brother.” Those words could all be placed on his tombstone. He was only 27-years-old. Unmarried. No children. Without an heir, that meant I was expected to take over the family business.
It was odd to call it a “Family Business”. It was more of a priesthood given to clans that carried from one generation to the next. Long ago, before any book was ever written. The Creator called one pagan man to be His friend, and from that ONE MAN, the Creator birthed a chosen nation. Then, a little later on, after this mighty nation had many tribes, some people from these tribes decided to devote themselves to God and to live Set-Apart.
They lived away from everyone else. They didn’t drink wine. And they commonly ate locust and honey, living in the deserts of the Middle East. When they felt ready, they would go to a priest of the Creator and they took the Vow making the official commitment to live solely for the Living God.
They continued to live apart from the common people of this chosen nation and strangers too. They continued to NOT drink wine or any type of alcohol. They also didn’t cut their hair while serving under the Vow. After they ended their service, they could take a razor to their hair again. Very rarely did anyone break their Vow to God.
The most famous person in History that belonged to this unique sect of people was Samson from the Bible. Then again, some wonder if he was real, because not everyone trusted the Bible as a reliable source. Which was funny, because there was no book on earth that had been checked more for its accuracy and cross-referenced to other accepted historical texts than the Holy Bible.
Samson got seduced by a woman from his enemy and she cut his hair while he was sleeping. What was so special about the hair? Well, the hair, “the crown of his glory”, was the source of his power that made him superhuman strong.
Samson was a Nazarite.
People think that after the Savior of the World came, lived, died, and rose again that Nazarites ceased to exist.
My family proves otherwise.
When mother explained the history of our family, I was a little bored and I thought of piano scales in my head. I was eight and I was learning how to play the instrument.
What I do recall was that about 50 years after Jesus ascended into heaven, a few hundred men were called by God through a series of dreams. All of them were from Jerusalem, and as soon as they could they all went to see their rabbis and pleaded to be allowed to take the Nazarite Vow. Now, there was a small hitch. All these men had left traditional synagogues and became followers of the Way. Believing Jesus the Nazarene (not the Nazarite) was the Messiah was blaspheme in the eyes of the rabbis and were denied their pleads.
A teacher to both Jews and Gentiles, heard about these men that desired to become Nazarites. He invited all of them to his home, for he surprisingly had substantial wealth, and he believed their dreams were from God. He helped the men, three days after the dreams came to the men, take the Vow.
The men left their jobs and their lives behind and went out battling the forces of darkness much in a way that seemed improbable and highly fictitious. Yes, they sought out demons and creatures in lieu with the Devil and defeated them. No, they didn’t use fancy spells or ancient, secret sayings, or use any paganism to battle the demons. Most of the time, demons were defeated through evangelism: sharing the Gospel. Occasionally, when an unrepentant soul liked their demonic company, super strength and some combat was needed. Well, weapons to fight against witches and warlocks were needed. Magic didn’t really work like telekinesis after they said the spell. Spells and hexes take time and even then they don’t work well on people who believe in and follow the One True God.
My brother, Levi, was born to be a Nazarite. Literally and figuratively. He was born first, so he was expected to carry father’s legacy and take the Vow to become a Modern Nazarite. He also loved rules and order. He loved the LORD with all his heart, all his mind, all his soul, and all his strength. Plus, hand-to-hand combat and sharing the Gospel came easy to him.
Me. I’m not cut out for this line of work!
Music is my thing… was my thing…
Immediately, at 18, I parted ways with my family and settled in Paradise Falls, Nevada. Yes, I knew the place was Sin Town. I’ll confess I was hungry to experience the vexing of temptation. Dare I say I wanted to know what it felt like to do something just because I WANTED TO and what I WANTED TO DO would FEEL GOOD.
Though my parents did a great job raising me. I couldn’t escape the Love of God and my love for Him wouldn’t wane. Sin Town sort of disgusted me the minute I walked down the Light Line. On the Light Line, clubs, hotels, and casinos lined each side of the main street that went straight through the Paradise Falls. People could pick where they got drunk, hooked up, and gambled away their paychecks or their inheritances. It was a slice of Hell on earth.
Yuck. I sound so judgey sometimes, but the truth can hurt, right?
Seven years ago, I only had $2,000 in cash, and I needed a job with the first place that interviewed me. That fortunate establishment to receive me as an employee was The Moroccan Palace.
The MP was the tallest and the largest extravagant hotel on the Light Line. Driving into the city, off the highway, it was the preeminently noticeable property of Sin Town. Without this replica of a Moroccan Monarchy Estate, Jude and the Jordans wouldn’t exist!