CQ Plus December 15-21 2012

Death Breeds Life

Preface: “Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit’ ” (Acts 2:38, NKJV).

“One day, towards the end of spring, a mother took her children to walk in an orchard, where fruit-trees were in bloom. Presently her eldest boy came running to her to tell her that the pink and white blossoms of the apple-trees were all falling off, and that the flowers would be spoiled. But she bade him not to grieve, as the next spring would bring plenty more.

“During the autumn she was again walking with her children in the same orchard. Now all the trees were bending under the weight of their ripe fruit, and the apples with their rosy streaks looked even more beautiful than the blossoms of May. So she called her son to her, and asked him if he remembered his grief at the loss of the flowers; and when she found that he did she told him that they had died that they might prepare the way for all the fruit that grew upon the trees. Then the children rejoiced, for—though at that time they knew it not—they learned that
God never destroys what He has made, but only changes it that it may become gloriously perfect.”*

One may liken the Christian life to the experience of the apple trees in this parable. Death is inevitable. In fact it is of a great necessity. We must die in order to live, in order for ripe fruit to be manifested in our lives (1 John 3:16). Christ’s death on the cross for our sins was indeed needed to prepare the way for all the fruit (the Christians, those of us who will believe and choose to follow Him). It was the greatest manifestation of love the world has ever known and sets the perfect example and standard by which pure and practical Christianity shall be measured.

Many of us shall, can, and do profess that we are Christians, but how does our lives measure up in comparison to the practical life of Jesus. We come to Christ as we are. but we are not to stay as we are. We are truly living testimonies on display for the world, our community, our friends, our co-workers, and our families. Everyone that we come in contact with to share Jesus, to point them to and testify of the Lamb that takes away the sin of the world. The Christian life should be one that bears testimony in all practical areas of life. We are to look to our great example, Jesus, to know how best to treat our fellow man.
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* Hubert Bower, Parables and Similitudes of the Christian Life (London: William Macintosh, 1871), pp. 13, 14

Jocelyn Beale, Winterville, North Carolina, U.S.A.