Better to Sleep with a Sober Cannibal

Recently I watched the old (1956) movie Moby Dick.  Gregory Peck played Captain Ahab.  It reminded me of my first adventure of reading through this early American classic novel.  One of the lines in the movie made me think.  Early in the movie the narrator of the work, a novice to whale-hunting, discovers that he is to share a room and a bed with a heathen cannibal.  This is the night before they are to prepare to launch out to sea aboard the Pequod to hunt for Moby Dick.

As he was in bed in the dark, his roommate enters the room with a tattoo covered face and carrying a shrunken head.  He is frightened and complains to the innkeeper about being roomed with a cannibal.  To which, the innkeeper responds,

Better to sleep with a sober cannibal than with a drunken Christian.

The next day the two became friends as they headed out to sea.  But the quote got me to thinking.

1.  It really isn’t very joyful being linked with one known as a Christian who doesn’t act like a Christian.

2.  Christian hypocrisy is less desirable than an honest n0n-Christian.

3.  Christians can have good relations with those who do not believe as they do.

4.  It is even better when you find a sober Christian.

The final option allows the Christian to relate with others with an unequalled depth.  My advice is to avoid using easy characterizations when developing relationships.  Some would avoid any who are not Christian.  This is not good.  But if Jesus is at the center of your life, you will find the deepest relations with others like this.  Using the quote above, her is the ranking of who might make a better bedfellow.

Best: A genuine Christian

Better: An honest non-Christian

Worse: A hypocritical Christian

Worst: An untrustworthy non-Christian