September 2, 2014
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the Law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:56-57
Here's an easy question: have you ever been stung by a bee? Here's another equally easy question: would you like to be stung by a bee again?
No doubt you are saying, "Yes, those are easy questions, and they are also very silly questions. Nobody in their right mind would ever wish to repeat the pain that comes from a bee's sting."
I agree and I thank you for your patience. Please, indulge me by answering one last question.
The question is suppose the sting of a honey bee had some properties that would stop the spread of cancer in your body; would you willingly suffer the pain of a sting if that would cure you of that terrible disease?
That changes things, doesn't it? A person might be willing to suffer a bee sting if it were to bring about a greater good.
Now I bring up all this talk about honey bees and cancer because, for a long time, scientists have known the bee's venom, in quantity, can stop some cancers. But science has not used bee venom to treat cancer because the same dosage which can cure also often brings about swelling, blood clots, and heart damage.
In other words, the cure can be almost as bad as the cancer.
And that is where a University of Illinois scientist, Dipanjan Pan, has come to the rescue. He has taken the bee's toxin, known as melittin, and removed the pain as well as the harmful side-effects. Then he has stuffed what's left into a nanoparticle and injected the medicine into a cancer victim. So far the medicine has proven promising as it has left the patient's healthy cells alone, even as it killed the cancer. More tests must be done before the treatment goes public.
Still, if the bee sting medicine does end up working, what a wonderful thing it will be! The world will rejoice and proclaim Dipanjan Pan a life-saving hero.
Now I share this with you because we have a Savior who knows humanity is dying from the cancer of sin. He also knows all of our self-help treatments have proven to be ineffective and eternal death awaits each of us.
But Jesus was not content to leave us as we were. He invested His life in giving us a cure which would take the sting out of death and, at the same time, remove every bit of sin from our souls.
Now, because of what Jesus has done, the world ought to rejoice and proclaim Him their Hero, their Rescuer, their Redeemer. Yes, they ought to do all those things, but all too often they don't.
This is why we must remind them of what Jesus has done, point them to His blood-bought cure, and encourage them to give thanks for the One who has taken the pain out of death and given humanity a cure from sin.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks for the healing which Jesus' sacrifice has brought to my soul. May others soon know the wonders of His cure. In His Name I pray. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries