October 8, 2013 Special Edition—SnyderTalk Editorial: Salvation, Obedience, and the Leading of the Spirit—Part 7: The Authentic Swing


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2--SnyderTalk Editorial 4


Salvation, Obedience, and the Leading of the Spirit—Part 7: The Authentic Swing

Playing golf that day in October 2000 was very peculiar because my mind was racing through Bible verses and passages that Yahweh had impressed upon me years earlier.  All of them were connected in my mind, and they related to me personally.  I now know that He was leading me down a path that would result in my writing His Name is Yahweh and this book, among other things, and it was a completely different path from the one I had been following for more than two decades.

I guess you could say that I had a choice to make.  I could obey Yahweh by following His leading, or I could decide to continue doing what I had been doing successfully for more than two decades.  But it didn’t seem like I was being offered a choice.  It felt like He was giving me specific instructions about a job that I was born (or created) to do.  At that moment, the only thing that mattered to me was doing what Yahweh wanted me to do.

Many people who enter academia dream about getting tenure at a great university and becoming chaired professors.  That was never my dream.  I used to tell the students in my leadership class, “I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.”  They got a kick out of that, but my point was that your journey in life isn’t complete until you stop breathing.  As long as you’re alive, you still have work to do, and it may not be the work you’re doing now.  I didn’t think my destiny in life was to teach business at a university, and I was letting my students know that they should be prepared to follow their passions and dreams wherever they lead without regard for their age or their level of success in their current profession.

I was tenured in 1981 after three years at the University of Virginia; I became a full professor in 1987; and I became a chaired professor in 1991.  God was leading me to give up things that most university faculty work a lifetime to accomplish but never attain.  None of that mattered to me, and walking away from university life was one of the easiest decisions I’ve ever made.  Just as important, my wife Katie was excited about the change we were about to make.  Yahweh had taken care of every detail, and all I had to do was follow Him.  Like I said, I guess I could have decided not to follow His leading, but that was out of the question.

Several years earlier, John Welborn, a friend of mine in Charlottesville, had given me a book to read.  John is a very good golfer, and he played on the University of North Carolina golf team.  Frequently, John and I talked about the similarities between golf and life, and the book he wanted me to read dealt with that issue.  The book was The Legend of Bagger Vance.  It’s a good book, and I really enjoyed reading it.

Bagger Vance’s description of the “Authentic Swing” stood out in my mind:

“I believe that each of us possesses, inside ourselves, one true Authentic Swing that is ours alone.  It is folly to try to teach us another, or mold us to some ideal version of the perfect swing.  Each player possesses only that one swing that he was born with, that swing which existed within him before he ever picked up a club.  Like the statue of David, our Authentic Swing already exists, concealed within the stone, so to speak.”

(Pressfield, Steven.  The Legend of Bagger Vance, William Morrow & Company, New York, 1995, p. 68.)

If you haven’t read the book, you should.  Robert Redford bought the rights to make the book into a movie, and he directed it as well.  The movie is good, but nowhere near as good as the book.  In the movie, Will Smith plays Bagger Vance; Matt Damon plays Rannulph Junah; and Charlize Theron plays Adele Invergordon.  Although Adele Invergordon is a major character in the movie, she makes little more than a cameo appearance in the book.

Rannulph Junah was a great amateur golfer before he fought in World War I.  The war disrupted his life, sent him spiraling out of control, and destroyed his interest in the game.  In the book, Bagger Vance befriended Junah in Europe following a battle during which Junah was severely injured, and he spent a lot of time with Junah trying to help him discover his “true self” — the person he was created to be.

Most of the book is a running dialogue between Vance, Junah, and Vance’s helper, a young boy named Hardy Greaves, during a golf match that Adele Invergordon arranged to save The Links at Krewe Island from financial ruin.  It’s a fictitious golf course and resort that her father built near Savannah, Georgia.  The match is between legendary golfers Bobby Jones and Walter Hagen and the hometown war hero from Savannah — Rannulph Junah.  Bagger Vance is an elderly black man who caddies for Junah, and throughout the match he gives Junah advice that eventually restores him to health.

This isn’t perfectly clear in the movie, but in the book, it’s crystal clear: Bagger Vance is Yahweh, and He uses the golf match to help Junah confront and deal with the demons in his life.  More than anything else, Bagger focuses Junah’s attention on discovering his Authentic Swing —or as Bagger would say, allowing his Authentic Swing to find him.

The moral of the story comes straight from the Bible.  Each one of us was born for a specific purpose, and our quest should be to let that purpose find us.  The only person or thing capable of preventing that from happening is us.  It reminds me of a caption in a Pogo cartoon that I saw several years ago: “We has met the enemy, and they is us.”

You are the only person capable of preventing Yahweh from doing through you what He created you to do.  If you stand in His way and resist His attempts to move you down the path that you were created to follow, you’ll only hurt yourself.  Steven Pressfield, the author of The Legend of Bagger Vance, used golf metaphors to drive that point home, and he depicted Yahweh as a gentle Servant guiding and directing his player — Rannulph Junah.  Junah had to play the game, but Yahweh had to guide him each step of the way.  That’s the way it’s supposed to be.  As Vance told Junah, and I’m paraphrasing, “I’ve been with you all along, and I’ll never leave you.”  That’s a great way to explain how Yahweh operates.

This SnyderTalk editorial is adapted from my book What Will You Do with the Rest of Your LifeClick here to order a copy.



9--Jerusalem Post


Upsurge in West Bank violence is unmistakable warning

Security forces continue hunt for attacker of Israeli girl in Psagot

Abbas mentions – but doesn’t condemn – Psagot shooting

Labor pans Netanyahu speech: PM leaves no hope for peace

US opens door to Iran taking part in Syria peace conference

Turkey’s Erdogan says Syria’s Assad is a terrorist, not a politician

Kerry lauds Assad for quickly complying with Syria chemical weapons resolution

Customs stops 320 kilograms of hashish in massive seizure on Egyptian border crossing

In strategy shift, Women of the Wall seek egalitarian prayer area

Gunmen kill 6 Egyptian troops near Ismailia



10--Arutz Sheva


‘Women Of The Wall Must Prove They’re Sincere’

Iraq: Monday, Bloody Monday

Abbas Again Fails to Condemn Terror Attacks

PA Leaders Teach Children Anti-Israel Poem

Iranians Wear Jeans, Mocking Netanyahu

‘Massive Explosion’ in Sinai Security HQ

Syria Peace Conference Called for in November

Target in Somalia was ‘Foreign Fighter Commander’

Iran: Men Allowed to Marry Adopted Daughters

Jimmy Carter – Will You Ever Visit Shiloh?





Rabbi Ovadia Yosef buried in largest funeral in Israeli history

Erdogan calls Assad a ‘terrorist,’ blasts Kerry

Wave of bomb blasts rock Iraqi capital, killing 30

Al-Qaeda claims recent attacks in northern Iraq

Syrian army retakes crucial road to Aleppo

German man charged with membership in terror group

Abbas says an agreement possible in nine months

Jesus Tomb Gaining Support

Peres appeals European threat to circumcision

Failed SEAL raid targeted Kenyan terrorist, Nairobi says



12--Other News


Jerusalem Panoramic Tour (Video)

Rouhani Tells Iranian TV How He Broke Nuclear Pledge (Video)

Palestinians Accuse Israel of Sending Animals to Attack Farms

Netanyahu: Palestinians must recognize Israel as Jewish

Netanyahu: Iran Sanctions Are Close to Goal

West Bank Attack: “Noam Screamed and Prevented a Disaster”

U.S. Government Shutdown Could Offer Iran Relief From Sanctions

Haredi youth arrested for spitting at Women of the Wall

Israel slams Council of Europe’s ruling against circumcision

Report: Iran agrees to stash Syrian jets



13--Perspectives 2


Connor Simpson: How the U.S. Captured an Al-Qaeda Leader in Broad Daylight— The U.S. military on Saturday carried out two chilling, intense operations against important terrorism suspects nearly simultaneously. One involved an hour-long firefight in Somalia. The other took place in a dangerous, unstable Libya and involved American troops capturing an al-Qaeda leader just after dawn.

Robert W. Nicholson: Evangelicals and Israel: What American Jews Don’t Want to Know (but Need to)— At a time when the state of Israel lies under existential threat from jihadist Islam, and under ideological and diplomatic assault in foreign ministries, international organizations, churches, universities, editorial offices, and other circles of advanced Western opinion—and when even some Jews in the Diaspora seem to be growing disenchanted with the Zionist cause—millions of evangelical Christians unabashedly continue their outspoken, wholehearted, stalwart defense of both the Jewish state and the Jewish people.

Dr. Eli Schussheim: Jews will continue to circumcise— The resolution issued last week by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, suggesting that circumcision is an immoral act, was most likely viewed by the council as the height of enlightenment and progress. That is probably also what Greek King Antiochus IV Epiphanes believed when he classified the Jewish faith as a primitive hindrance to the progress of Hellenistic culture and outlawed circumcision. The same is probably true of the Roman Emperor Hadrian who, alongside banning circumcision, also took additional steps to eradicate the Jewish identity. For example, he did away with the name Judea and named the region Syria Palaestina.

Rabbi Benjamin Blech: The Vanishing American Jew?— For years I would laugh at the irony. In 1964, Look magazine ran a cover story entitled “The Vanishing American Jew.” Boldly, with the self-assurance of a national publication that had millions of readers, the article clearly explained why in all certainty there would no longer be any Jews left in the United States in the 21st century. Well, we all know what happened. Jews survived, but Look magazine disappeared.

Matthew Schofield: ‘Jihad tourism’ is surging— Young Muslims heading to Syria to fight, become adept terrorists, and return to the Western countries that gave them refuge.

Shimon Stein: The Agreement on Syria’s Chemical Weapons: Should Israel Reassess its Arms Control and Disarmament Policies?— The Geneva agreement on the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal has been signed. The significant differences of opinion between the United States (and France and Britain) and Russia during the decision making process in the UN Security Council on the relevant resolution that was approved indicate that there are still numerous obstacles to implementation of the historic decision, and that it is too early to consider the task completed. Yet even if a US recourse to military action if Syria fails to fulfill the agreement is ostensibly still on the table, it is clear that a diplomatic process of disarmament is beginning. It is as yet difficult to assess how this process will unfold, and its implications depend to a large extent on the way the Syrian issue is handled.

Boaz Bismuth: How the US destroyed its credibility— Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei criticized the American administration over the weekend, describing it as “arrogant” and “untrustworthy.” Furthermore, according to Khamenei, the U.S. administration cannot be trusted because it is controlled by the “international Zionism network.”

Laura Dean: The Unluckiest People on Earth—Long before the start of the Arab Spring, Syrians in the southern town of Saqba had close ties with Egyptians in Damietta. For generations, the two towns were their countries’ capitals of furniture making, and businessmen and artisans moved back and forth between them. When Syrian President Bashar al Assad’s regime began driving citizens from their homes, many residents of Saqba found Damietta a logical destination. Some had existing relationships with Egyptians there, and Egypt overall was welcoming toward Syrian refugees. Moreover, the cost of living was low, and craftsmen and artisans felt sure they would find jobs in Damietta. And they did. By the summer of 2013, a local NGO reported that there were over 8,700 Syrian refugees living in Damietta. Many found work in furniture factories or workshops. Syrian shops and restaurants took root. Many Syrians settled there permanently and even married Egyptians.

Ephraim Kam: Iran: A New Style of Negotiations—The sanctions are the primary leverage the West has to use against Iran and there is no reason to assume that the West will revoke them merely because of flowery Iranian rhetoric. The sanctions will be lifted only if Iran shows a positive approach and agrees to substantial concessions. The sanctions also compel Iran not to try to use the negotiations as a stalling tactic. Unlike in the past, Iran is currently not interested in gaining time to advance its nuclear program because uppermost in its mind is attaining an agreement that will result in revocation of the sanctions.

Paul Richter: Iran Nuclear Talks: Congress Is the Elephant at the Negotiating Table—Without congressional backing, Obama’s diplomatic options are limited. Since only Congress can permanently lift the bruising sanctions it has imposed on Iran, lawmakers can torpedo any deal if they believe the White House is giving too much to Iran. While Obama can temporarily suspend sanctions imposed by law, he would most likely need to convince Congress that Iran has complied fully with tough U.S. legal requirements before lawmakers would permanently lift sanctions.



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4--Scripture of the Day USE THIS ONE

The scripture below is from the New American Standard Bible, and the hyperlinks associated with each word are from Strong’s Concordance for the New American Standard Bible.

Amos 4: 3-4

“You will go out [through] breaches [in the walls], each one straight before her, and you will be cast to Harmon,” declares Yahweh. “Enter Bethel and transgress; in Gilgal multiply transgression! Bring your sacrifices every morning, Your tithes every three days.”


5--HNIY Print form 2

His Name is Yahweh explains why the Name of God, Yahweh, is so important.  It’s available in eBook format and in paperback.  It’s also available for free in PDF format.

  • God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘Yahweh, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.’ This [Yahweh] is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation.” (Exodus 3: 15)
  • “Therefore behold, I am going to make them know—this time I will make them know My power and My might; and they shall know that My name is Yahweh.” (Jeremiah 16: 21)
  • “Behold, the days are coming,” declares Yahweh, “when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch; and He will reign as king and act wisely and do justice and righteousness in the land.  In His days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely; and this is His name by which He will be called, ‘Yahweh our righteousness.’” (Jeremiah 23: 5-6)
  • Yeshua said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.” (John 8: 58)


6--His Name is Yahweh Audio Presentation 2


Yahweh is the Name of God Forever

Click here to download the entire audio presentation for free and with no strings attached.  Share it as often as you want.

6--Freely You Received Freely Give



14--Blessings from Revelation 2

Blessings in the Book of Revelation is a book that you need to read, especially now.  There are blessings throughout the Scriptures but Revelation is the only book in the Bible actually containing a specific blessing for reading it. It’s repeated twice, once at the beginning and again at the end. This is the reason that I believe Revelation should be the first step toward studying biblical prophecy. Though not easy to do, Revelation can be broken down and understood by anyone, not just the academic elite. So, Revelation’s blessings are for everyone.  Click here to order the eBook.  Click here to order the paperback.


Other Books by Neil Snyder

  • Stand! is a suspense novel that exposes the lies, corruption, and greed underlying the theory that man-made CO2 emissions are responsible for global warming.  Professor Wes Carlyle and Karen Sterling, his research collaborator, carefully scan the audience for their would-be attacker—a member of the enviro-gestapo who has been following them for days.  Wes spots his man in the back of the room leaning against the wall.  Suddenly, another man in the audience steps forward and moves toward Karen at a menacing pace.  With a vicious stroke, he swings a billy club at her head.  Click here to order the eBook.  Click here to order the paperback.
  • What Will You Do with the Rest of Your Life? deals with a question that every Christian has to consider: what should I do with my life?  Click here to order the eBook.  Click here to order the paperback.
  • Falsely Accused is a true story about a young woman who was accused of committing a double homicide.  It’s about a travesty of justice, and it reveals Yahweh intervening in the life of a believer to rescue her from danger in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds.  Everyone will enjoy the book, but young people in particular need to read it because the mistakes made that led to the problem could have been avoided.  They were the kinds of mistakes that young people are prone to make.  As they say, forewarned is forearmed.  Click here to order the eBook.  Click here to order the paperback.

15--Concentric Circles 2

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