Hebrews 10:38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.
The news has had much to report on the fires burning in Hawaii the past couple of days. The death toll has now risen to 80 and they expect to find more dead bodies. Hawaii has been a vacation destination for many over the years. It is also a place where couples go to get married. Families and friends have made the trek to Hawaii for a couple’s wedding. Those who make those choices demonstrate the vanity of their thoughts. That is a topic for another day.
Since this place has been a drawing card for so many over the years, and since two places in Hawaii have been the centre of the fires, I thought it would be interesting to find out what the names of these two places mean. The local people that have been interviewed speak of the pagan connection to the places.
Maui is the name of one of the islands that make up the state of Hawaii. The meaning of the name is “trickster god.” It is a boy’s name in Hawaiian. The name comes from Polynesian mythology. There may well be some true born again Christians living there. However, the meaning of the island is as stated. It’s roots are pagan and from what I have heard, it is still very much a pagan place today. Pagan places need the Gospel for sure. It is not likely that the few Christians that are there could change the name to something that honours God. It seems the world, at least the affluent in the world, look to Hawaii as a place of pleasure.
The city of Lahaina means “merciless sun.” They claim that even if it rains in that area, the sun is still shining in Lahaina. History suggests that around 1794 King Kamehameha the Great conquered Maui and named Lahaina the capital of his kingdom. Apparently it was a busy place in that time. There were chiefs and kings, queens and ship’s captains and whales in that area. During the 1800’s it was known for its whaling industry. It was known as a whaling port. During that time it was also known as a wild town. When the first “missionaries” came there, they were quite alarmed by the whaling industry and the wild nature of the town. They set about to convert the people from being pagans to “Christendom.” Christendom is different than Christianity. Much of the people who would call themselves Christians today would be suited to be part of Christendom. The Bible would describe these people as having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof. I would assume that these “missionaries” were likely Catholics.
The whalers took a disliking to the “missionaries” and would lobby cannonballs at the houses of the missionaries from the ships. A fort was built to try to protect the “missionaries” from the irate whalers. Apparently remnants of the fort are still there. In the late 1800’s until 1959, when Hawaii became a state, Lahaina was more or less deserted. Apparently there were some sugar cane plantations there.
In the 1960’s Amfac, which was a land development company in Hawaii, began to bring this city back to life. Businesses moved in and people began to live there again. Apparently there is a church there called “Wailola church. Most of the kings and queens and others are buried in its cemetery. It was originally called Waine’s church.
According to the recent news, that building was also burned by the fires, but the governor has promised to rebuild it. It is a symbol to the emptiness of the godless religion of the region.
Back in 1873 a Banyon tree was planted in the area and apparently the recent fires did not destroy that tree.
Reports suggest the area is a busy place presently with whale watching and snorkelling. Of course that will be on hold at this present time. The area is hoping for government help to rebuild quickly since tourism is a big part of its income stream.
All of that history is simply mentioned to remind us all of making wise choices. Living for self and the devil is not productive. It may bring in some income. In fact many people have become quite wealthy serving the devil. However, what we have witnessed through news reports of late, remind us that the things of this world can turn to ashes very quickly, much quicker than they can be built.
If there are born again Christians on that island we need to pray for them. Those people who have survived the fires will need to be reminded of where real hope and purpose is found. It is true that buildings can be replaced. Lives cannot be replaced. It is also true that no buildings of this earth will survive into eternity. They are all inanimate objects that can serve human purposes for a time, but eventually rot and crumble. Souls live on.
The Bible declares:
Ezekiel 18:4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.
The death spoken of is what the New Testament calls the “second death.” It is that eternal death with no further opportunity of repentance and salvation. It is the death that all those who reject the Lord Jesus Christ will face.
The people of Hawaii would have had the Gospel at some time in their past. All people are descendants of Adam and Eve. All people are descendants of Noah and his family. We do not read much about Adam and Eve, but we do know that Enoch walked with God and was not for God took him. Enoch was a God-fearing man who served God faithfully in his generation. We also know that Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. Noah walked with God, as did Enoch. The ancestors of the Hawaiians would have known the truth at some point. However, their descendants chose to reject the truth and followed a lie.
I am not going to say that God started the fires that burned in that area recently. However, knowing the history there, we can know that God would want to use those fires to remind people that they need to know Him. Rather than live for self and the devil, the wise person humbles himself and turns to the true God for salvation. Then he or she can begin to build a life that has purpose and meaning. Then they can help others to see the importance of knowing the truth and being saved.
That is the greatest need of man. That is what those who are saved need to pray for the people of Maui.