God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life”. (John 3:16)
It was a Sunday evening; two teenagers were hurrying to get to the church on time.
After a few of the usual Sunday evening hymns, the church's priest introduced a guest minister who was in the service that evening.
In the introduction, the priest told the congregation that the guest minister as one of his very nearest elders and friends since his childhood and that he wanted him to have a few moments to greet the church and share whatever he felt could be appropriate for the service. An elderly man stepped up to the pulpit and after watching the congregation a while, he started his speech by narrating a small incident.
"A father, his son, and a friend of his son were sailing off the pacific coast. They are there to enjoying the weekend. Suddenly the sea changed, big storms and waves begin to show the brutal power of nature and a fast approaching storm blocked all the attempt to get back to the shore. The waves were so high, that even though the father was an experienced sailor, he couldn't keep the boat upright. Suddenly the boat capsized and the three were swept into the wild roaring Ocean.
That elderly man hesitated for a moment, then after taking a deep breath he looked the congregation. Then he continued, "Grabbing a rescue line, the father looked here and there to find his son and his son's friend. He saw both were struggling to escape from the wild hands of Ocean on the different sides of the capsized boat and the ocean waves are trying to taking them to the deeper Ocean.
With a great agony he realized that, only he can help one of them either his son or his son's friend. He had to make the most excruciating decision of his life; to which boy would he throw the other end of the life line. He only left a very little time to make his decision.
The father didn't take much time to make a decision, he knew that his son was a Christian and he also knew that his son's friend was not. Even though the agony of his decision could not be matched by the torrent of waves, he yelled out, 'I LOVE YOU MY SON!' then he threw out the life line to his son's friend.
By the time the father had pulled the friend back to the capsized boat, his son had disappeared beneath the raging swells into the black of night. His body was never recovered."
He continued; do you know why that father took that painful decision to sacrifice his only son for someone? Because the father knows that even though his son will die but certainly would step into eternity with Jesus, and he could not bear the thought of his son's friend stepping into an eternity without Jesus. So he took a hard and painful decision to sacrifice his son for saving the son's friend.
Look, how great is the love of the god that he should do the same for us. Look our heavenly father sacrificed his only begotten son for us, that we could be saved.
Dear friends, I urge you to accept his offer to rescue you and take a hold of the life line he is throwing out to you in this service."
With that he concluded his speech and that old man turned and sat back down in his chair.
As, silence filled the room the priest again walked to the pulpit and delivered a brief sermon.
Within minutes after the service ended, the two teenagers were at the old man's side. They told him that it was a nice story, but we don't think it was very realistic for a father to give up his only son's life in hopes that the other boy would become a Christian Well, you've got a point there, the old man replied and glancing down at his worn bible a big smile broadened his narrow face. He once again looked up at the teenagers and said, it sure isn't very realistic, is it? But I am standing here today to tell you that story gives me a glimpse of what it must have been like for god to give up his son for me.
You see - I was that father and your priest is my son's friend!