... The blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. 1 John 1:7b
Up until last week I knew two things about possums:
1. They play dead when they are afraid and
2. Granny on The Beverly Hillbillies roasted them for supper.
This week I have added a third item to my knowledge of the gray critter: possums may someday save the lives of many of the 20,000 people in the world who, each year, die from poisonous snakebites. Now if you're wondering how that is going to happen, let me tell you.
For over three quarters of a century, researchers have known that possums shake off a snakebite, which would bring down a strapping, young man. It appears there is something in the possum's blood that makes it immune to the toxin. For want of a better name, scientists have given that something a name. They call it the Lethal Toxin Neutralizing Factor. Amazingly, it appears that the Lethal Toxin Neutralizing Factor can also work against scorpions, poisonous plants, and bacteria.
Recently, researchers were able to make a cheap synthetic copy of the Lethal Toxin Neutralizing Factor and have tried it out on mice -- successfully.
If these tests continue to be successful, before too long the Lethal Toxin Neutralizing Factor may be sent to remote areas of India, South America, Southeast Asia, and Africa where the majority of snakebite deaths occur.
Amazing -- tens of thousands of people might be saved by the blood of a poor possum.
Now, if you think that story is amazing, then you really need to hear about the blood of Jesus of Nazareth.
During His lifetime most of the people who met Jesus thought He was just the son of a Galilean carpenter. Of course, there were a few who considered Him to be a great teacher, a wise philosopher, a worker of miracles, or a fake and a fraud.
Only a few considered Him to be anything more. But Jesus was more. He was much more.
Jesus was the sinless Son of God who came into this world to live for sinful humanity -- God's perfect Son who had been born so He might suffer for us, carry our sins, and shed His blood on the cross of Calvary. Then, after He had defeated sin and the devil, Jesus defeated death itself and three days after He was buried, He rose from the dead.
Now, when sinful souls are brought to faith in Him as their Savior, their sins -- the sins which once were so fatal -- are removed, and they are given eternal life. Jesus' blood has become that medicine which is freely given, that medicine which will save all who receive it.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks that Jesus' blood has given me an immunity to the condemnation of sin. May I do all I can to tell others about this wonderful medicine that forgives sins and save souls. This I ask in Jesus' Name. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries