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Ernest Gordon was a prisoner held by the Japanese during WW2. The captors in his camp were forced to build a railroad through the jungle and over the River Kwai. The prisoners were treated inhumanely and soon fell into living the law of the jungle where every man was out for himself.
At the end of each day, the tools were counted. One day, it was discovered a shovel was missing. A guard became enraged and demanded to know who had stolen it. When nobody confessed, he screamed, “All die! All die!” He raised his gun to shoot the first man in line when suddenly, a man stepped out of the ranks and said, “I did it.”
The guard began furiously kicking and beating the man. He eventually brought down the butt of his rifle on the man’s head. As the man fell motionless to the ground, the guard continued to kick him. After the violence stopped, the prisoners carried the man’s body back to the camp.
That evening, the tools were recounted and it was discovered there were no missing shovels. There had been a miscount. The man was innocent and sacrificed his life to save his fellow prisoners.
The man’s selfless sacrifice changed the attitude in the camp. Everyone began looking out for their fellow prisoner. Hatred was still present but there was also love. Death did not stop but there was also life. (Gordon, Ernest. Miracle on the River Kwai. Collins Publishers, 1963.)
This story reminds me of Jesus’ sacrifice. If you’ve ever wondered about this sacrifice, the following are some questions I’ve received along with answers.
Why does God hate sin?
- Because sin separates us from Him.
“But the trouble is that your sins have cut you off from God. Because of sin he has turned his face away from you and will not listen anymore.” Isaiah 59:2
So there’s punishment for sin?
- The punishment for sin is death. I don’t like it any more than you but we don’t make the rules. God does. So yes, there is punishment and it’s harsh.
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23
“Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.” Revelation 20:15
Is there a way to get out of this punishment?
- Absolutely! And it is so easy! Through Jesus!
I don’t get it! How does Jesus make a difference?
- Just as the man stepped out of ranks to take the punishment for the missing shovel, Jesus steps in front of us and takes our death sentence for us.
“He personally carried the load of our sins in his own body when he died on the cross so that we can be finished with sin and live a good life from now on. For his wounds have healed ours!” 1 Peter 2:24
We all die. So I don’t understand how this saves me from death.
- We do not avoid death in this life. But death is just a doorway to spending eternity in heaven with God or in hell without Him. God loves us and wants our eternity to be spent with Him so He provided the ultimate sacrifice. I would die for my children but I wouldn’t sacrifice them for anybody. My love has a limit. God’s love doesn’t.
“For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son so that anyone who believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
So what exactly do I have to do to be saved?
- Believe Jesus is the Son of God, He came to live as a man on this earth, He died for your sins, and overcame the bonds of death by rising again on the 3rd
“He then brought them out and asked, ‘Sirs, what must I do to be saved?’ They replied, ‘Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.’” Acts 16:30-31
- Confess with your mouth that Jesus Christ is Lord.
“If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9
Simply pray: “Lord Jesus, I believe that you are the son of God and that you came to earth and died for my sins and rose again on the 3rd day. I confess that I am a sinner and in need of your salvation. I come to you now and ask that you will come into my life, be my Lord and savior, and forgive me of my sins. In Jesus’ name, amen!”
It’s that simple. Next week I’ll explain the next steps and changes that occur with this decision. Meanwhile, I would LOVE for you to message me if you prayed this prayer.
© 2015 Connie Davis Johnson
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart..” ~ Jeremiah 1:5a
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. ~ Psalm 139:13-14
Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. ~ Psalm 139:16
“God created you with a longing to know you are significant, accepted and secure – and then He met that need through Jesus. You are LOVED with measureless grace and affection.” ~ Renee Swope A Confident Heart
“The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.” ~ Steve Furtick
See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! ~ 1 John 3:1a
“The way we continually talk about our own inabilities is an insult to our Creator.” ~ Oswald Chambers
“Remember He is the artist and you are only the picture. You can’t see it. So quietly submit to be painted. i.e., keep fulfilling all the obvious duties of your station (you really know quite well enough what they are!), asking forgiveness for each failure and then leaving it alone. You are in the right way. Walk – don’t keep on looking at it.” ~ C. S. Lewis
What’s the price of a pet canary? Some loose change, right? And God cares what happens to it even more than you do. He pays even greater attention to you, down to the last detail—even numbering the hairs on your head! So don’t be intimidated by all this bully talk. You’re worth more than a million canaries. ~ Matthew 10:29-31
“Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are.” ~ Malcolm Forbes, American magazine publisher
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. ~ Jeremiah 29:11
“Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. The fearful are caught as often as the bold.” ~ Helen Keller
The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing. ~ Zephaniah 3:17
“All your efforts to win God’s affection are unnecessary. All your fears of losing his affection are needless.” ~ Max Lucado
For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. ~ Philippians 2:13
“Every artist was first an amateur!” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. ~ 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. ~ Psalm 34:18
“Don’t let people’s compliments go to your head, and don’t let their criticisms go to your heart. The degree to which you do either of these things is the degree to which you’ll be ruled by what other people think of you.” ~ Lysa TerKeurst
What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? ~ Romans 8:31-32
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This post is part of the Whimsical Wednesday Link up
and the Woman to Woman Word Filled Wednesday Link Up
©2013 Connie Davis Johnson