"More Than Enough Room"
August 23, 2017
Acts 4:12 - 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.
By the Act of March 1, 1872, Congress began what would become the National Park Service.
This it did by carving out chunks of Montana and Wyoming to make Yellowstone National Park. The law said it wanted this area to be "a public park or pleasuring ground for the benefit and enjoyment of the people" and placed it "under exclusive control of the Secretary of the Interior."
A pleasuring ground for everyone sounds like a crackerjack idea, and it is.
The only problem with that line of thinking is this: in 2017 there are a lot more everyones than there was in 1872. Just as significantly, the numerous everyones of 2017 can travel farther and faster to see these national parks than could their ancestors.
And those two facts, my friends, can make for an overcrowding problem.
Indeed, for the first time in the U.S. National Park System's history, there is a movement to use a reservation system to limit the number of people going into some of the parks at any given time. The first park on that list is Zion in Utah. Last year 4.3 million people surged into that bit of beauty -- most of those visitors confining themselves to the park's main canyon.
Those who study the park say it's too much of a good thing and must be limited.
You know, we Christians ought to be very thankful. By midnight on the first Pentecost there were only a few thousand believers. Put all those people together and you've got a small town. Today, 21 centuries later, there is an estimated 2.2 billion believers in the world, and Christianity is the single largest movement in the world's history.
Now 2.2 billion people would destroy the infrastructure of the world's most far-sighted municipality. Thankfully, those numbers cause no problem for the Lord. Think about it:
1. God loved the world and every person who would ever live in it.
2. God sent His Son to carry the sins of -- and die for -- every sinner.
3. God would have all men to be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth.
4. Jesus, the perfect Savior, has gone to prepare a place for every person whose name is written in the Lord's Book of Life.
In short, Daily Devotioner, as long as your faith is in good shape, you don't have to worry about whether there is going to be room in heaven for you.
That's the good news. The bad news is that the world today holds 7.5 billion people, and that means there are 5.3 billion people who aren't headed for heaven. That means two out of every three people you see aren't going through the pearly gates.
And that's a shame because the Lord has done everything necessary to bring them home.
It's time for us to help.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, You sent Your Son to seek and save the lost. I was once one of those lost, but now I have been found. Although I cannot reach out to 5.3 billion people by myself, use me to share the Savior's story of salvation with the lost around me. In Jesus' Name I pray. Amen.
The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written by the Editors of Newser on July 21, 2017. Those who wish to reference that article may do so at the following link, which was fully functional at the time this devotion was written: click here.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries