I don't know if I could do it! I don't know if you could do it.
Say that you were in line to be the President of the company that you worked for. The boss was your dad, and it was the "next step" for you to take over and run the enterprise when the "old man" stepped down or died.
Then someone came on the scene who was the most capable person that you had ever met! His talent seemed unlimited! His strength of character was impeccable! And he was your best friend! Not just an acquaintance, but this man completely stole your heart, and it was a friendship unlike any you had ever known! Though you were older and more experienced in the business, you felt that he was your leader. There was no competition between you: just a real and lasting brotherly friendship such as you had never known.
But suddenly your father took an intense dislike of your friend! He said that he literally hated him and wished him dead! The father's will was to put your friend on a "hit list"! And that is when you knew that your dad was intent in his purpose. You took action, and sent your friend away to save his life! You knew that somehow, someday he would be back, running the company, but you did not care as long as he was safe. With great sadness you saw your friend walk away.
This is a fabricated story that tells of self denial and true self sacrifice. This is the ultimate test of love: denying your will and even your life if it comes to that. This fictitious scenario is well illustrated in the Bible Book of I Samuel, chapter 20 in the story of Jonathan's great friendship and self-sacrifice of his own future. Jonathan was King Saul's son, first in line to the throne of Israel. Jonathan was a seasoned soldier who saw an amazing young shepherd boy kill the giant Goliath with one stone from his shepherd's sling! Jonathan was there when David played the harp to soothe the mental affliction that his father suffered. He became fast friends with David, and verse 17 says that Jonathan "loved him (David) as his own soul." Knowing that David had to flee for his life, Jonathan assisted David in his escape. Saul was very angry at his son saying, (verse30) "You son of a perverse, rebellious woman! Do I not know that you have chosen the son of Jesse to your own shame and to the shame of your mother's nakedness? For as long as the son of Jesse lives on the earth, you shall not be established, nor your kingdom. Now therefore, send and bring him to me, for he shall surely die."
That's when Jonathan decided to send his friend away!
The New Testament gives us another picture of self sacrifice for a dearly beloved son. It is The ultimate sacrifice of God the Creator who gave His only Son as the supreme sacrifice for our souls! What love was this that loved us enough to send Christ into the world! What hate nailed that Perfect One to a cross, with the violent haters yelling, "We will not have this man to rule over us!" What revulsion at the scene when He breathed His last, and the earth quaked, the Temple veil was rent apart, and the darkness covered the land at the unholy sight. But then, on the third day, what incredible power rolled the stone away from the tomb, and Christ came out of that tomb, fully and eternally alive!
He did this for you and me! Not because of the blood of lambs or goats! But only the precious blood of the Sinless Savior, Jesus the Christ! The Great Love, inestimable in scope, is our hope for today, tomorrow, and forever!
If you do not know Him as your Savior, do not wait a moment longer! Ask, Seek, Knock until your heart knows that He is your own! Repent of your sins and turn your life over to the Savior! What we can never do for ourselves, or for that matter, for any other living soul, is to really save them! But when we give our heart, soul, spirit and strength unto Him, He is well able to save us! Can you do it? Will you do it? Come as you are! And leave as Redeemed!
(Get into God's Holy Word and read it for yourself! Let the beauty of the Word fill your heart and mind! It will be sweeter than honey or the honeycomb! It will be the scent of roses in May! It will be the brightest dawn that you will ever see! And the most glorious sunset that the world has known! Life! Breathe life and live through the Word of God!)