A Chapter on Bees

 •  4 min. read  •  grade level: 6
Although there is nothing basically new about bees, the ferocious behavior of new hybrid Brazilian bees has added a new chapter to the volumes already written about them. These hybrids of deadly African honey-bees have plagued Brazil since 1957 when a beekeeper accidentally let twenty-six swarms escape.
Headed by queens brought from southern Africa these swarms spread rapidly across southern Brazil, invading the hives and quickly displacing their docile Brazilian cousins.
Noted for their swarming habits, persistent assaults and savage stings, it is estimated that up to one hundred-and-fifty human and countless animals have been killed in unprovoked attacks. During one three-hour raid the mass of bees is said to have been so thick it blotted out the sun.
Although honey is mentioned in Scripture much more frequently than the honey-bees, the ferocity of bees is alluded to in Deut. 1:4444And the Amorites, which dwelt in that mountain, came out against you, and chased you, as bees do, and destroyed you in Seir, even unto Hormah. (Deuteronomy 1:44) where the fierce Amorites chased the soldiers of Israel "as bees do.”
Most people in their lifetime encounter bees in some way. Following is an account of one youth's experience with a bee which resulted in the salvation of his soul. It is an old story, but worth repeating.
Asked how long he had known his Savior and if he was sure his sins were forgiven, the young man replied: "Oh, yes, I know they are all forgiven: I am quite sure of that.”
“When did you first come to know that?”
“When the bee stung Mother.”
“Tell me what you mean.”
“I have a mother," said the lad, "who for some years told me what Jesus had done for me, but I never really understood how He had taken my place and died in my stead until one summer's afternoon when as a child I was playing at the door of our cottage.
“Mother was ironing in the kitchen, when suddenly a bee came buzzing about my head evidently determined to sting. I tried to drive it away, but round and around me it flew, closer each time.
“At last I ran inside to escape and made for my mother who had been watching the whole performance through the open door. With a cry I hid myself under her long white apron.
“With motherly care she put her iron down and put her arms outside her apron to assure me that I had full protection.
“This was hardly done before the bee landed on one of her bare arms and stung her so deeply that it was unable to pull out its stinger. Then exhausted, it crawled slowly down her arm.
“My mother, who felt the sting terribly, was naturally taken aback; but seeing the bee crawling down her arm, a thought struck her which was the means of my salvation.
“She said to me, "There, you may come out now; the bee has stung Mother instead of you; come out and look at it crawling on my arm. It cannot hurt you now.”
“Cautiously I lifted the apron, and put my head out to see. There was the bee still crawling down her arm; and my mother, pointing to the sting" 'There it is; it has stung Mother instead of you. You may play with it now; it cannot sting again. See, its sting is in Mother's arm; it has only one sting.'
“Half afraid and a little sorry for my mother, I looked at the sting already beginning to swell. She went on to explain how I might play with the bee now and even take it in my hand, as it could not sting twice and therefore could not hurt me any more. Then she told me it was a picture of what for long she had told me about of Jesus taking my place and suffering in my stead on Calvary.
“I had often repeated that verse. ‘With His stripes we are healed,’ but I never understood it till then. With the bee and the bee sting before me I realized that Jesus had given Himself to be punished instead of me. How true are those three short lines—
" 'Payment God will not twice demand;
First at my bleeding Surety's hand,
And then again at mine.'
"It was all so clear God would not punish me, because He had already punished Jesus! Yes, it was when the bee stung Mother. And ever since I have been filled with joy and peace in believing that Jesus died for me.'”
Many a Time Grandmother Lost Her Eye Glasses, and Searched for Hours in All Corners of Her Cottage for Them Only to Find Them Pushed up on Her Forehead. Some Look Far and Wide for Salvation When It Is "Nigh" All the Time. Read Rom. 10:88But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; (Romans 10:8) and 9.
When the Titanc Sank in Mid-Ocean, There Were Just Two Classes, the Saved and the Lost. Nothing Between. so There Are Now in the World. Read 1 Cor. 1:1818For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. (1 Corinthians 1:18).