Scrooge !


On a lazy Saturday afternoon in December, I was struck by the Christian message I received from a television presentation of Charles Dicken's "A Christmas Carol". Although many have interpreted the Dicken's classic, I saw and enjoyed the one where George C. Scott portrays the main character, Ebeneezer Scrooge.

You've seen it before - three spirits visit Scrooge at different times in the early darkness of Christmas day and teach him lessons from his past, present and future respectively. As a result of the visits, Scrooge's life is changed from the depths of misery to unspeakable works from joy. However, it was the visit by the spirit of Christmas future, the spirit of death, that most affects Scrooge's change of heart. During this visit, Scrooge is seen clutching his gravestone, weeping at the realization that his life was wasted in greed, self aggrandizement, loneliness and hatred. Staring at death and the certainty of eternal torment in hell, Scrooge promises to change his ways and share the blessings.

This is consistent with the Word of God, as Jesus Christ warns all of us much more of the damnation of hell than he does of the glory of heaven. Make no mistake, we will all live forever, either in heaven with God or in the flames of hell without Him! Despite this, I believe we would live with much more earthly joy if we spent 1 minute in heaven as opposed to 1 minute in hell, as Ebeneezar Scrooge experienced. How does the Bible describe heaven? "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him." (I Corinthinas 2:9). We can't show heaven on tv because our feeble minds can't even imagine, taste feel or touch heaven. Yet, to experience a "Scroogian" joy, the Bible instructs us differently than Dickens. While Dickens offers the experience of hell to scare us into joy, the Bible promises the reward of everlasting heaven which can only result in true joy, today!

"I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us." (Romans 8:18)

"For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all." (II Corinthians 4:17)

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