TITLE: Two Plans
DATE: July 13, 2019
TEXT:. 1 Timothy 2:4 - ESV - 4 who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
It was several centuries ago when a curious, and deadly plague appeared in a village in Lithuania.
The disease was “curious” because, as soon as an individual contracted the plague he, or she, would, almost immediately fall into a deep, almost deathlike, coma. It was a state from which a great percentage of the victims never emerged. Indeed, the vast majority of the afflicted died within a 24-hour period of time. I say ‘the vast majority died’, because, occasionally, inexplicably, unexpectedly, a hardy soul would recover and very quickly be restored to the full bloom of health.
Unfortunately, in the 1700’s, medical technology just wasn’t all that advanced .and it was difficult to determine if a person was living or dead. Which explains how one person was buried in, but revived from that coma like state.
The town was horrified by what had happened and had a town meeting with only one question on the agenda: ‘How can we make sure such a tragedy will never, ever, happen again?’
After considerable discussion and deep deliberation the town agreed they would, from that moment on, put food and water into the casket next to the person being buried. Further, they would add a tube which would extend from the casket up to the surface. This tube would offer fresh air and a means by which the seemingly dead individual, might call for help from above.
These expensive changes were accepted by most everybody. Most everybody.
There were a few who came up with an alternative. There was a group of townspeople, a small and vocal faction who put forth an alternative proposal, a far less expensive procedure. This group suggested every casket be equipped with a foot-long spike, a spike which would be mounted on the coffin’s lid, directly over the heart of the person who was supposed to be dead. When the casket top was closed, the spike would put an end to any possibility of someone being buried alive.
Amazing, isn’t it: two totally different solutions were for the same problem. In the face of a tragedy, one group was willing to do anything and everything necessary to provide people with a chance to live and another group who only wanted to make sure everybody stayed dead.
Now you may think I invented that story. I can only assure you, if it is invented, I didn’t do it.
More importantly, the Lord created a variation on that story.
On the one side of the struggle there is Satan. He, with his demonic henchmen, are dedicated to the task of making sure you are really, eternally, spiritually dead. To that end they have developed the tools, and the skills, to make sure that when you breathe your last, you will be a goner for all eternity.
If you’re spiritually dead right now, and by that I mean, if Jesus is not your Savior, they’re glad of it. And, if you’re not dead, they stand eager and ready to nudge you along toward the direction of doubt and disbelief.
In complete contrast to the devil’s forces and the sinister principalities of darkness stands the Triune God of Christianity. Father, Son and Holy Ghost. He, along with His loyal angels, has shown that He is willing to pay the price, pay any price, even the price of the Savior’s life, to make sure that when you die, you will bypass hell and begin an eternity of joy and happiness in heaven.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, grant that the lost can be saved and hearts of stone may be softened by the salvation message of the Savior. In Jesus Name. Amen.
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann. He along with three of his brothers perform on the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html