Living For Him
There was a boy named Jason. He was 12 and skipped school most days. On the days he was at school, he picked fights with other school mates and got himself suspended. His parents were nevertheless very caring and loving towards him. Despite his inadequacies, they loved him no less.
His father who was quite a short balding man and who ran an anti-drug medical center, used to plead to Jason to stop fighting at school and taking drugs before things got worse. Still, Jason was unyielding and continued to do what he wanted with his life.
Over the next two years, things continued to spiral downwards for Jason, who moved onto harder drugs and started to hang around with a violent group of drug addicts and dealers, between which, they often had violent disagreements.
His parents, especially his father, were getting more and more concerned with Jason and due to Jason's larger frame, pleaded rather than scolded Jason to stop taking drugs because he knew what would happen to him.
When his sister also pleaded with him to stop, he got angry and yelled back, "I don't really care what happens!" It became a habit of Jason's to find the short way out of drug deals, trying to rip the dealers off with counterfeit money that he had gotten hold of. It was a dangerous game but he had no money and he needed the drugs.
Late one night, Jason's dad was driving home after work when he saw a boy being chased by eight much larger boys wielding chains and baseball bats. He realized that the boy was Jason! He stopped his car on the side of the street and chased after his son, with the men a few paces behind. His son, drugged and delusioned, slowed down and his father was able to catch up. "Run Jason! They're coming!!" He couldn't help it, he was incapacitated and unable to run any further.
Seeing his son in such a helpless state and the men closely following behind, Jason's father got to Jason and unable to do anything further, he embraced his son tightly, standing between his son and the pursuing boys. The boys reached the two and started beating Jason's father repeatedly with baseball bats and the chains that they had brought along. Over and over they pounded at him, trying to get him to let go of Jason, but he wouldn't, he couldn't allow anything happen to his son.
After only a short while, his grip started to loosen as blood poured out of his head and his body bruising from the blows and seeing what they had done to the man, the boys ran off. Bleeding profusely and convulsing from the blows, his father quietly whispered "I love you, son" as his eyes rolled back and breathed his last breath. Jason, despite being drugged up to his eyes was able to comprehend what had just happened.
Through uncontrollable sobs and incoherent cries, Jason realized his father who was still lying over him - lifeless, died to save him from the drug dealers who were after him. Still crying and hating himself for whom he had become and what he had caused to happen, he made a quiet vow to give up his drugs and his violent lifestyle. If not for himself, then at least for his father who died because of him.
Weeks later, Jason could be found at the medical center training to become what his father used to be, and continue to fight the fight against drugs. His inexpressible sorrow and shame for his past deeds gave him no other choice but to do whatever he could to be like his father - he felt fully inadequate but he tried anyway, he felt he HAD to at least try.
Think about this story and consider the parallels to Christianity.. God, our father, warning us not to go into sin and not heeding his warnings we entered into sin heading straight towards hell. God had to manifest himself as a pure and sin-free human being, Jesus Christ, and nailed on the cross - bleeding from flesh-tearing whips and stabs in the side from the Roman guards, He died so that we could be saved from the judgment that we deserved for being imperfect humans.
Then imagine the pain Jesus Christ would feel knowing that you, whom he died a slow, humiliating and excruciatingly painful death on the cross for, refuses to acknowledge that he died for you. Christ loves you and it doesn't take a fully conscious human to realize the kind of gratitude that we must therefore show to him. How would he feel when you are in hell pleading for him "Jesus, I now believe, please remove me from here!" With the pain and sadness of a father watching his son being tortured, he can only answer "Thou hour has passed, judgment has been set."
Or maybe if you do acknowledge his death, continue to
live your lives, meaning that his death had no impact on you. Don't
you feel at least compelled to replicate his life? If this didn't actually
happen and was just a story created for another 'religion', Christians
all over the world would not risk persecution, humiliation, hate and
sometimes loss of friendship for sharing this story to those whom the
love.. and don't want to suffer an eternity of regret.