June 20, 2009
And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other Name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. Acts 4:12
I once went to an ice cream store that usually offers a mini multitude of flavors.
Because of the lateness of the delivery truck, the man behind the counter was limited in his offerings. Waiting on the lady in front of me, he simplified the selection: "What can I get you: chocolate or vanilla?"
The mother who hadn't read the explanation on the door asked, "Why don't you have more flavors?" I love the reply the clerk shared. He said, "Lady, if you knew how much time it takes for people to make up their minds deciding between chocolate and vanilla, you'd never carry any other flavors."
Choice seems to be the order of the day.
Go to the mall, and you are forced to make a choice between a dozen movies all saying you "have to see them." Shop for toothpaste, and you must decide between tube or pump, fluoride or regular, mint or bubblegum flavor. Choices are one of the great joys and ongoing burdens of life.
Except when it comes to a Savior, that is. When we look at the list of saviors this world has ever hosted, we find one: Jesus. That's right, Jesus is the only Savior this world has ever seen, that it ever will see.
Now I know there are a lot of voices out there who want you to believe they can save you. "Trust me", they say. "Put your confidence, your vote, your hope in me," they endlessly plead.
Still the best any of these can claim is this: for a short time, for a few people, they can provide some temporary relief from a passing problem.
Only Jesus, through His life, death, and resurrection has the ability to make an eternal difference for all who believe on Him.
Choices seem to bog us down. That's why it's nice to note that when it comes to God, there aren't a whole lot of choices available. In fact, there is no choice. It's Jesus or no one.
So, the next time you are given the option: "chocolate or vanilla," give thanks for Jesus who is the only Redeemer who can save.
From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I am so grateful You have chosen me. Help me to tell my friends and family about Jesus, the only Savior they will ever need, they can ever be given. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries