|Vol. 14 No. 9 September 2012||
I had thought that I might enjoy having one, but I never dreamed that someone would give me a GPS, though they did. Much to my surprise, some of my children gave me a GPS for a Christmas present. A son took charge of getting the thing ready for me for use in my car. He put the address of a local business into the GPS, and this lady’s voice instructed me when and where to turn in order to get to my destination as I looked at a map where I was to travel. In case you might not be familiar with this gadget, here is a brief definition: “The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a satellite-based navigation system made up of a network of 24 satellites placed into orbit by the U.S. Department of Defense. GPS was originally intended for military applications, but in the 1980s, the government made the system available for civilian use. GPS works in any weather conditions, anywhere in the world, 24 hours a day.” Theoretically I should never get lost while traveling when I use my GPS.
In the beginning of man’s existence on earth, he was in a safe place and in a perfect relationship with Jehovah God. In a sense, man was not saved because he had never been in a lost condition. However, he became estranged from his God and in a lost condition because of his disobedience to the commands given to him from God (Genesis 2:15-17; Isaiah 59:1-2; Romans 5:12). However, in the darkest day of man’s existence in the beautiful Garden of Eden, God’s plan for man’s salvation is found in Genesis 3:15 when the “seed of woman” was mentioned. The “seed” is also referred to as being the “seed” of Abraham. The apostle Paul defined that “seed” as being Jesus Christ (Galatians 3:19, 16). The fact is, Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God was referred to by John in Revelation 13:8 as being “slain from the foundation of the world.” The Lord God, in His infinite wisdom, foreknowledge and marvelous grace and love, planned aforetime to provide salvation for mankind through the death of His beloved Son (Hebrews 2:9; Ephesians 2:5, 8; John 3:16). Throughout the Old Testament there is the theme that ‘someone is coming’ and that being the promised Messiah who would bring salvation to the human race. Isaiah, the messianic prophet, prophesied hundreds of years before the coming of the Savior: “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14); and His name was to be called Jesus “for He will save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). Jesus, in answering Thomas who asked Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?” said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:5-6). The roadmap that leads to salvation and to the Father is found in the person of Jesus Christ. He is the only way (Acts 4:12)! So He says to all who would be His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me” (Matthew 16:24). The way that Jesus leads us is “narrow” and “difficult,” but the reward is eternal life (Matthew 7:13-14). God has given us the perfect and complete directions in His Holy Word that will lead us to Jesus Christ and salvation (Psalm 119:105; John 6:44-45; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:2-4).
God’s plan of salvation certainly involves man’s response. A person must believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God (John 8:24) and repent of sins (Acts 17:30), and based upon a confession of faith in Christ, be immersed in His name for the remission of sins (Romans 10:9-10; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38). Following in the steps of the Savior, we will never stray from the way that is infallibly safe and secure and that leads to “the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:10-11). May our attitude always be as found in the song, “Where He Leads Me I Will Follow.”
According to a friend of mine, a conversation he had at work not long ago went something like this (starting with his buddy’s words): “I took my daughter to the mall the other night, and she showed me a pair of shorts she wanted me to buy. They cost $107. Man, there was more cotton in the top of an aspirin bottle than what it took to make those shorts.”
“Did you buy them?” “No, I’m not going to buy something like that. Her mother buys her all that stuff.”
If I had the opportunity to talk to the three members of that family, here is some advice I would give to each one. I could say a lot more than I will write here to each one, but the short statements here represent a lot more that could be said – especially to the Dad.
To the daughter I would say, “Do you have any idea what kind of person you are attracting by the type of clothing you are choosing to wear? Do you really want somebody to be interested in only what you have to offer physically? Are fashion and popularity more important to you than your reputation, your future and your soul?”
To the wife/mother I would say, “I do not know what your teen years were like, but do not try to relive it or remake it through your daughter. Please do not encourage her to grow up too fast. You are setting her and yourself up for a lot of heartache. Oh, and one more thing; why are you and your husband working at cross-purposes in childrearing?”
To the husband/father I would simply say (in the current vernacular), “Man up!!!”