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Gifts and their Source Illustration #1

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Gifts an their Source Illustration #1

Now there are two ways to treat these blessings, which are actually your spiritual possessions: either to lay hold of them or not to lay hold of them. Two stories illustrate what I mean, and both of them are true. When I was in Chicago many years ago, picked up the evening paper during the week and read a little article and clipped it out. It was way down at the bottom of the front page and wasn’t apt to be noticed. It read “The flophouses and saloons of Chicago’s Skid Row were searched today for one Stanley William McKenna Walker, 50, an Oxford graduate and heir to half of an $8,000,000 English estate. The missing persons detail hoped that somewhere among the down-and-outers who line the curbs and sleep off wine binges in the cheap hotels they would find Walker, son of a wealthy British shipbuilder.” I thought how tragic it was. Imagine being an heir to half of $8,000,000 and being a wino who’s sleeping in two-bit hotels. I felt like sitting down and weeping for that poor fellow. Then I began thinking of the children of God today who are living in cheap hotels, living off the little “wine” of this world. I don’t mean that literally, but that they engage in cheap entertainment down here. They are wealthy beyond the dreams of Croesus and are blessed with all spiritual blessings, but they live like paupers down here. There are a lot of folk in our churches who live like that today, and it’s tragic. I was telling this story when I was a pastor in Los Angeles, and a lady who was visiting from Chicago came up afterward and asked, “Dr. McGee, do you know the end of that story?” I said, “No, I never heard.” She said, “Well, they found him.” “Oh,” I replied, “that was wonderful.” “No,” she said, “they found him dead in a doorway on a cold night later on that fall.” How tragic to die like that man died. Many Christians live and die like that, and yet they are blessed with all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies in Christ.

  The second true story happened out West here, years ago. An heir to a British nobleman was living in poverty and barely eking out an existence. After the nobleman died, they began to look for his heir and when they found him, they told him about his inheritance. A great deal of publicity was made of it. Do you know what that fellow did? He immediately went down to the clothing store and ordered their best suit and then bought a first class ticket to return to England in style. Do you know why? He believed the inheritance was his, and he acted upon it. My friend, you can go either route. You can travel your Christian life in first class or in steerage. You can go second, third, or fourth class, and there are a lot of Christians doing that today. God wants you to know that you’ve been blessed with all spiritual blessings. He hasn’t promised us physical blessings, but He has promised spiritual ones, and these are in the heavenlies in Christ. My friend, you’re not going to have any spiritual blessing in this life that doesn’t come to you through Jesus Christ. That’s just how important He is. He not only has saved us, but He is also the One who blesses us. How we need to lay hold of Him today and to start living as a child of God should live. 

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