Gathering Together


“I have a sword,” said Merry, climbing from his seat, and drawing from its black

sheath his small blade. Filled suddenly with love for this old man, he knelt on one knee,

and took his hand and kissed it. “May I lay the sword of Meriadoc of the Shire on your

lap, Theoden King?” He cried. “Receive my service, if you will!” “Gladly will I take it,”

said the king; and laying his long old hands upon the brown hair of the hobbit, he blessed

him. “Rise now, Meriadoc, esquire of Rohan of the household of Meduseld!” he said.

“Take your sword and bear it to good fortune!” “As a father you shall be to me,” said

Merry. “For a little while“, said Theoden.

(The Return of the King, pages 50-51)

Out of the Shire Comes a Rider of Rohan

His name was Meriadoc Brandybuck, but he went by the name of Merry. Now the

Brandybucks were hobbits from Buckland of the Shire, near the Brandywine River. Of

the nine members of the Fellowship of the Ring, four were hobbits. Merry was one of

them. He was a friend of Pippin, as well as Frodo and Sam. Merry started out the journey

as a friend and for the adventure of it all. He ended up a mighty warrior of the Riders of

Rohan. How all this comes about is through that awesome fellowship mentioned before.

Of the four hobbits Merry had the distinct privilege of being one of the two hobbits

captured by Saruman's army of orcs.

As we go down the list of the Twelve Jesus chose to follow Him, we find that

some may have done so with less then pure motives. There were at least two zealots

among the Twelve, James and Judas Iscariot. James was one of the first to die for Jesus. I

always get confused between the James' listed as Jesus' disciples. One was a brother to

John while the other was not. Yet, all His disciples seemed to suffer persecution for

preaching the Gospel. I believe Foxe's Book of Martyrs lists only John as not being put to

death. (Allegedly he was thrown into a pot of boiling oil and survived, so was exiled to

the Isle of Patmos). To me this sounds a lot like Merry. For although he had common

beginnings, his communion with the Fellowship and dedication to the quest, brought

something out in him that was most uncommon. Although fearful and at times flippant,

Merry ended up as one who is valiant. James and John were common fishermen from the

poor town of Galilee. Through knowing Jesus, observing His commandments, and by the

power of the Holy Spirit, they became valiant. Jesus called them, "Sons of Thunder",

which may refer to their overzealous attitude, or prophetic of their unwavering love for

God. One of Merry's last feats, before returning to the Shire, was striking a blow to the

Nazgul. The feat was, in itself, ineffective, and almost cost Merry his life. It did,

however, afford Eowyn the pause needed to strike the deadly blow.

I like Merry because he was serious at times, yet playful. He wasn’t burdened

down, even in the end. What he became was due to those around him, and the task he

chose to do. So also what we become are defined by what we choose to do, if we are


"God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are

mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen,

yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are." (I Corinthians