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What if the sun only shone on the good of this world and not on the bad? What would happen if the sun was only given to the righteous and not to the unrighteous? What would happen if this sunlight was only given to those who deserved its light? What about the rain as well?
We know God causes the sun to shine and the rain to fall on both good and evil. So, I ask you, what would happen otherwise? The sun would not shine, nor the rain come down where and to whom? You see, the elements must do their work, same as God must love everyone. In like manner we should follow suit and love all, our friends and our enemies alike. If we are to bear the likeness of the God who saved us we must love those who love us and those who don’t.
I have many fond and lasting memories of our vacations back when our girls were small, traveling through the Great Smoky Mountains. It seemed as if the sun shone over all the world. Looking down and around, we could see for miles, our Creator’s great handiwork; the pure blue ski, its puffy white clouds, the trees, the plant life. On down into the valleys, the sun shone over the buildings, houses, roads, and the numerous vehicles looking like toys buzzing around as well. And after the summer rain would fall, what a refreshing smell all around!
With the mile-high atmosphere, I could reach out and talk all around the world, by way of my CB short wave radio. Even though stopping to talk down below was not at the best interest of the family.
“What are you thinking, my love?’ the wife said, sensing I was deep in thought.
“Well Dear, I just can’t imagine a place or time on this great earth of ours, when our loving Creator would refuse the sun to shine, or not allow the soft rains to fall," I responded back.
Not giving the wife time to answer, I continued, ”I realize both good and bad take advantage of His creative mercy and grace. It’s kind of like His commandment for us, His Children to love all, not only those who love us."
The wife, then smiled her customary approval and giving her pat answer, "Amen."
So, let us now move on with this nice blog. I trust you will enjoy this brief fiction parable entitled “Beyond The Wilderness Doors"
“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and His glory appears over you.” (Isaiah 60:1-2)
"OK class, here it is, your dissertation assignment for this semester." As I passed out the assignment paper, I could read their facial disappointment. “Was I too hard on them?” I wondered. “Don’t think so, after all, these are really bright students."
So, without another word, while they were gathering their senses, I quickly and quietly eased out of the room as I’m accustomed to doing under such adverse student-teacher pressure.
I couldn’t help rehashing my loving students' demeanor, the look on their faces, the mere thought haunted me as I traveled home. Oh well, what’s done is done. It can’t be undone. I surely can’t go back on my assignment now. My creditability would surely be in danger. After all, these are very smart kids; they’ll make it all right. I just know they are up to the challenge. Come Monday morning, I’ll pass out my study notes, to get them thinking.
After arriving home and taking off my shoes, I decided to sit a spell to unwind and catch my breath. It was rather chilly, rainy night and I was totally tuckered out from my week's teaching at the Bible Seminary. Laying my trusty laptop aside, I wrapped up in my wool blanket for a warm winter's nap.
I was abruptly awoken by the most unusual vision. Not a normal one but one of immense importance that would eventually answer the aforementioned questions.
I was drawn out into the midst of an immense wilderness landscape. The scenery appeared as if I walked long enough, I might just fall off into an unknown abyss. By a divine directional guidance, that almost happened. I was overcome by the most severe lightning array followed by a colossal roar of corresponding thunder.
As I looked around by the light of the intense lightning the scenery was ablaze with brightness. It was as if the entire landscape had suddenly turned from night to day.
There were two large doors, shown by the unceasing lightning, in the middle of the landscape standing side by side surrounded by endless fencing. What was so strange was that both doors displayed unusual, engraved contradicting phrases.
The door to the right read “The Righteous” and the one to the left read “The Unrighteous.”
Before I was able to encompass the thought of it all, there suddenly appeared out of nowhere a strange looking character. He was dressed in the most unusual fashion. He wore a garment of camel’s hair and a leather belt about his waist, and stood there eating what appeared to be locust and wild honey. There was a rather ornate Bible scroll in a pouch on his belt.
“I think I’ve heard of this character (Matthew 3:4). But surely it can’t be him," I thought.
Taking my hand, as if by providential destiny, we started walking towards the two doors. As we stood in front of the doors, he turned to me and spoke. “Which door will you choose, my good man?"
“It really doesn’t matter, Sir, for beyond these doors the landscape seems all the same. It appears as the surrounding rain has let up all around and the sun is shining over all. So, what difference does it make?" I responded.
Without another word, the strange man opened his scroll and began to read.
“Bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you that you may be children of your Father in Heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” (Matthew 5:44-45)
He then continued with a personal commentary, “What then do you think should be your decision, the purpose of entering this beautiful God-created landscape? What door fits the example of this Scripture?”
“Well, since the environment seems to be the same, on the other side of these doors, since all mankind are made equal by God, and all mankind have a free will of choice, then the only lasting decision would still be the same as I decided long ago, one’s eternal relationship with God, by one’s faith in His merciful free grace,” I answered. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
He went on, “We are to love both our friends and enemies, in the name of Jesus. For you see, the sun does shines on both the just and the unjust. And the sky rains as well on both the just and the unjust. If the sun only shone on the just, the unjust would have no sun. If it only rained on the unjust, the just would have no rain. These same created elements serve both factions. It’s the law of love as I previously read, from His talking with His disciples in (Matthew 5:44-45)."
“You are so right, kind sir," I exclaimed. "As the sun shines on us all, as the sky rains on us all, we are to love the good, the bad, and the unworthy. Love the others, not for who they are, but because of who we are. For we are the light of the world. (Matthew 5:14-16). If we love only those who love us, then our love of the gospel is limited.”
“Sir, Sir, where did you go? We’ve not finished with our talk,” I asked in a sudden fright.
Nonetheless, as I looked around for his validation, he was gone as suddenly as he had arrived. With his quick disappearance, I found myself back home, still wrapped up in my bed covers, my laptop still waiting for the finishing touches of my students' graduate dissertation notes.
One thing for certain, I’m not really sure about the origin of this vision, but I certainly know how to put it to good use. Come Monday, it will all be wrapped up and I will be finished with my hand-out to the class. Amen!
“For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked… They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men… Their eyes stand out with fatness; they have more than heart could wish." (Psalm 73: 3,5, 7)
I trust you enjoyed this powerful little fiction piece! I further trust you got the message, and that you have chosen the right door of life, of righteous over unrighteous living.
A sad note, oftentimes sin and its effects do tend to rub off on us Christians. However, if we live by the Spirit, we should also walk by the Spirit (Galatians 5:25) and not become boastful, challenging one another, and envying one another. (Galatians 5:26).
Even though we live in this world temporarily, with all its sinful nature, we Christians are not of this world. So, the deeds of the flesh (Galatians 5:19-21) as opposed to the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) should not be allowed to rub off on us.
It can be no other way, you see, our Creator, God, didn’t make us a bunch of robots, but he gave us all a free will, to choose right from wrong. This division of good versus evil is actually a by-product of man’s original inherited sin in the Garden of Eden, (Genesis 3:1-7) and has continued until this very day. Thus, bad does happen to good and good does happen to bad. Thanks be to our all-powerful, all-knowing Creator, He is just in all His doings. There is an escape for all, for now and forever more. (John 3:16-17)
This will all change by-and-by. You see, I’ve read the back of the book (Bible) and we (God’s People) win out. Amen!
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