We finished our breakfast and Ricky brought the separate checks for Stan and me. As Stan reached into his pocket, he said, “Oh, no, I forgot my wallet.”
Ricky was nearby and I motioned to him and he came over to the table. “Stan forgot his wallet,” I said to him. “Please put his bill on mine so I can take care of it.”
“Will do!” Ricky responded.
“Thanks,” Stan said. “Just like Paul and just like Jesus.”
“What?” I replied. “What do you mean?”
“What you just did is the same thing the apostle Paul wrote in his letter to Philemon about Philemon’s former servant named Onesimus who had run away.”
“Why did he run away?” I asked.
“I have no idea,” Stan replied. “But later he became a Christian, and the apostle Paul sent him back to Philemon. Paul told Philemon if Onesimus had wronged him in any way Paul would take care of it.”
“Well, that was sure nice of him,” I said.
“It was,” Stan replied. “And there’s a point about Jesus doing the same thing for me and for each one of us by His sacrifice on the cross. In essence, Jesus said to His Father, ‘If Stan has wronged you, if he owes you anything, put it on my account; I will take care of it’.”
“And,” he continued, “that’s exactly what Jesus did. He paid a debt He did not owe because there was no way I could pay it. Not only did I not have my wallet with me, even if I did, it had nothing in it that could pay for my separation from God!”
“Only through the blood of Jesus,” Stan concluded, “could my debt be paid. Just like you did with your offer to pay the debt for my breakfast, Jesus offered to pay the debt of my separation from God, and I accepted. I thank you, and I thank Him!”
But if he has wronged you in any way, or owes you anything, charge it to my account. Philemon 18.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for sending your only begotten Son into the world to pay all that needed to be paid so I’m reconciled to you. Thank you for those who brought me to the truth that Jesus paid the debt He did not owe because I had nothing with which to pay it. Because of your love, grace, and mercy, you provided the finished work of Christ Jesus on the cross. Through the cross I can look forward to spending eternity with you when it’s time. As well, I can spend the rest of the time I have on this side of eternity pursuing the eternal life of knowing you and Jesus. Please, Father, help me in following every step of your lead into an ever-deepening relationship with you. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Salvation is a free gift. It has to be accepted because it cannot be earned. Do you believe there is nothing in your “wallet” to pay for it? Why or why not? Have you accepted that free gift? If not, why? Have you ever tried to do something that turned out to be impossible? If so, what did it feel like when you finally admitted you couldn’t do it? Trying to work your way to heaven is like that. It’s impossible, and the sooner you realize that, the sooner you will experience the freedom of knowing you have gained eternal salvation by merely accepting it.