"No Surprise Here"
October 18, 2011
Then they also will answer, saying, "Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?" Matthew 25:44
Great Britain's 47-year-old Mandy Fleming is a lady who has a temper.
A number of years ago, when she and her husband were separated, Fleming paid a visit to his yacht. There she was surprised to find he had made a number of improvements on the vessel.
Now fixing up your yacht is almost always a good thing to do. Just about the only time you don't want to improve your yacht is after you've told your estranged wife you have no money.
Having seen the yacht's upgrades, Fleming called up her husband and yelled at him. Then she returned to the yacht with a drill. The next day the harbor master noticed the man's yacht was slowly sinking from the three holes that she had drilled in the hull.
To make a long story short, Fleming pled guilty to sinking her husband's ship. When the judge sentenced her, he said, "You were a manipulative, angry and troubled individual." Then, because she had also turned on the gas so the ship would explode, Fleming was sentenced to jail.
When Fleming heard the verdict, she began to cry. It was almost as if she were shocked there would be any penalty for her crime.
It's sort of like those folks in Jesus' description of Judgment Day.
When Jesus returns, He says He is going to separate the saved from the lost. Those lost are not going to take the bad news lying down. Shocked and surprised at the verdict, they will voice a defense. It's a defense that won't do them any good.
The truth is manipulative, angry, troubled and unbelieving sinners are not going to be saved. This is why, while there is still time, we need to share with them how Jesus lived and died to save them.
And why would we share the Savior's story? There are two reasons:
1. He asked us to.
2. I hate to see grown men and women -- like Mandy Fleming -- cry.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, for saving me from all my sins, I give thanks to You. It is an undeserved gift that Your sacrifice has bestowed. Now may I share that gift with those I meet. Use me so the manipulative, angry, troubled unbelievers of the world may know by grace they can be saved through faith. This I pray in Your Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries