Pastor’s Corner – April 2015


Pastor Jim Mann

In 1999 the U.S. Treasury began to mint quarters from our 50 states. The one from Delaware, the first state, has a very interesting story behind it. On the coin is a man riding a horse (I guess it was a “quarter” horse!). The man’s name was Caesar Rodney.

In 1776 the 13 American colonies were about to sign the Declaration of Independence. Each one of the colonies was to send three representatives. In wisdom, our forefathers had determined that a unanimous vote was needed for such a momentous declaration. As Benjamin Franklin quipped, “We must indeed all hang together, or most assuredly we shall all hang separately.”

When the debate was over and the vote called, there was a problem. Caesar Rodney was in Delaware training the colony’s militia. So the Continental Congress dispatched an express rider from Philadelphia to fetch Rodney. He got the message at sundown on July 3.

It’s said that Rodney left immediately. He rode 80 miles through thunderstorms. He traded horses five times. And when he walked into Independence Hall, spurs on and covered in mud, he cast the final vote for independence.

A great story no doubt. But as Paul Harvey might say, here’s the rest of the story. Caesar Rodney was known for a trademark green scarf he wore tied around his head. He wore the scarf to cover much of his face and hide the terrible effects brought on by his long battle with cancer.

Rodney, a man of considerable wealth, was not without hope though. There was a treatment for this type of cancer that had proven to be very successful. In fact he and his family were making plans to get treatment.

The only problem was that this medical cure could only be found in England. When Caesar Rodney voted for independence and signed that Declaration, he was, in effect, signing his own death warrant. Making himself an enemy of the British crown, he knew he would never be able to return to England for medical assistance. He died of cancer seven years later.

What a story of sacrifice! And as wonderful as that sacrifice was, it pales in comparison to the sacrifice God has made for us. The Gospel of John reminds us “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). And later, “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13).” God made that sacrifice for you. My prayer for you this Easter is that you will experience a new appreciation for the sacrifice made on your behalf. See you in church!

Jim Mann, Ph.D. pastors New Life Church at Robson Ranch. This interdenominational church meets at the Robson clubhouse on Sunday mornings at 8:30 a.m. Visit New Life’s website: www. for more information.