The Lower Lights> Aug 2002|
Alan Jones, Editor
"Brightly beams our
From the lighthouse
But to us He gives the
Of the light along the
Published monthly by the church of Christ, 35900 Palmer Road, P.O. Box
86-233, Westland, MI 48166
A few years ago, while I was living in Kentucky, I bought a cordless
phone. The reason that I bought that particular phone was because of the
$5 rebate that came with it. This rebate made the phone cheaper than the
other phones that were comparable to it.
I placed the rebate claim form on my desk where it soon found itself
buried and lost. One day when I was cleaning my desk I found it and I
decided that I would mail it in. As I picked up the claim form, I noticed
written in bold capital letters- "IMPORTANT- TO QUALIFY FOR THIS REBATE
YOU MUST:"- so I read the conditions. I needed my original sales
receipt. Amazingly enough I had already found it. The receipt and the
claim form were still together on my desk. But, I discovered that I had to
have the UPC from the box in order to get the rebate. I figured the box
had been thrown away and so I stopped preparing the claim form.
Later, to my surprise, I found the box and cut out the UPC. I laid it with
the claim form and my receipt on my desk. "Iíll get it out later", I said
to myself. "I have until the end of April to get it in." Once again the
desk swallowed my paperwork. I found it again on April 28th (a
Friday) and, thinking it was not too late, I started to prepare it. But,
on close examination, I found that all claims must be received by
April 30th (a Sunday). The form had to reach Michigan by the
deadline and so I was sunk. Instead of a rebate, all I had left was an
We can understand that my rebate claim would have been rejected without a
receipt and a UPC, or if it had been received on or after May 1st.
All conditions of an offer must be met in
receive what is promised. God has offered man salvation through the blood
of His Son Jesus (Col 1:19-22). This offer is conditional, however. And,
it is unreasonable to believe that God will give us the salvation that He
has promised if we have not qualified for it by meeting all of His terms.
Many go through life ignorant of what Godís conditions are because they
have not read the terms, they have misread them, or they have been
deceived about them. God lays down these conditions in order to be saved
from sin: (read them for yourself!)
Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God (John 8:24)
believe in Jesus with the mouth (Romans 10:9-10)
your sins (Luke 13:3)
(immersed) in water to wash your sins away (Acts 22:16)
Which of these conditions can be left out and the blessing of salvation
still received? None of them. Many would say baptism. But it is no more
possible to be saved without baptism than it is to receive a rebate
without a UPC if it is required.
The saddest story will be told about those who understood the conditions
of salvation, but put it off until the deadline of death (Heb 9:27) or the
com-ing of Jesus (1 Thess 5:1-10) made it impossible to take advantage of
the offer. Knocking on the door of heaven after the deadline will do the
same amount of good as my turning the rebate form on May 1st.
It will be too late. The offer of salvation has expired! (Mt 25:10-13).
Wonít you meet Godís terms and qualify for salvation before itís too
SEEING GOD IN A WATERMELON
As you eat one of summerís best treats, you would do well
to think of God. Paul wrote, "For since the creation of the world His
invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been
clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they
are without excuse" (Rom 1:20). Meditate on the following words of the
famous statesman, William Jennings Bryan. Can you see a watermelon and not
see God? Truly there is no excuse for not believing in God and for not
giving Him the worship and obedience He deserves. There is no denying an
Awesome, Wise, and Powerful Creator.
"Once, when I was going to Columbus, Ohio, I
stopped to eat in a restaurant and ordered a slice of watermelon. I took
the seeds home with me to plant in my garden.
That night a thought came to my mind. How many
watermelon seeds would it take to make a pound. The next day I weighed
them and found that it would take about 5,000 dried seeds.
A few weeks later, I planted just one of the
little seeds. Under the influence of sunshine and shower, that little seed
had taken off its coat and gone to work. It gathered from somewhere two
hundred thousand times its own weight and forced enormous weight through a
tiny stem and built a watermelon. On the outside it has a covering of
green and within that rind of white and within that a core of red; and
then it had scattered through the red many little seeds, each one capable
of doing the same work over and over again.
What architect drew the plan? Where did the
little watermelon seed get its strength? Where did it find its flavoring
extract, and its coloring matter? How did it build a watermelon?
Until you can explain a watermelon, do not be
too sure that you can set limits to the power of the Almighty. The most
learned men in the world cannot explain the watermelon, but the most
ignorant man can eat a watermelon and enjoy it."
"O Lord, how many are your works! In
wisdom You have made them all!"
"I will sing to the Lord as long as I
live; I will sing praise to my God while I have my being."
Psalms 104:24, 33
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