Fred E. Dennis
The two significant words that stand at the head of this article were spoken to a poor, lost soul in Hades. He had wasted his day. “Of all sad words of tongue or pen. the saddest are these, It might have been.” There are so many things we ought to remember. We ought to remember that the first man was Adam. So many smart men in our day do not remember that. They are smart beyond that which is written. “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul” (Gen. 2:7). “And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit” (1 Cor. 15:45). Yes, this is the beginning of the human family. God made the first man. This is the only satisfactory explanation of the origin of the species. Remember that.
We should remember that it was not good for man to be alone, so God made him a helpmeet (Gen. 2:18). And it might be well to remember that God did not make him two or three wives, but one. That was God’s original order. That is God’s order. Let us not forget that. More than one wife at a time are too many wives.
We should remember that this man and woman were placed in a perfect environment. They had everything to make them happy. They were permitted to eat of the fruit of the garden. There was no prohibition. They must not eat of the fruit of that one tree. We should remember that God said that if they ate of this they would die. Of course it is hardly possible for us to forget that more than two hundred generations of the human family have gone down to their graves because of sin. “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned” (Rom. 5:12).
Let us remember that our fore parents fell through the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life. Yes, the fruit of that tree was pleasant to the eyes, it was good food, and a tree to be desired to make one wise (Gen. 3:6). The devil knew how to work the woman and man for their fall. He has lost none of his ingenuity. He is trying to drag us down to hell through the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. Is it any wonder that a loving and merciful Father continually warns his children of the danger (1 John 2:15-17).
But let us remember that our foreparents had no sooner fallen when God began the preparation for redemption. “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed: it shall bruise thy head, and thou shall bruise his heel” (Gen. 3:15). After four thousand years of the history of this old world had rolled into eternity, God sent this seed to this sin-cursed earth. Yes, he came to bruise the head of Satan. He was miraculously conceived and brought forth of a virgin. This was all in God’s plan. The devil would like even to discount this.
And no sooner had this Son come into the world than the devil tried to get rid of him, and he is still trying it—and the sad thing is that he succeeds in getting him out of the lives of so many. But God preserved the life of his Son. He was taken into Egypt, and later God called his Son out of Egypt. And do not forget that this was all according to prophecy, and remember that he was born in Bethlehem according to prophecy. But when he was brought out of Egypt he dwelt in Nazareth. Yes. the prophets had said that he would be called a Nazarene.
And remember that he was taught to work. He was brought up at the carpenter’s bench. Thus God’s Son dignified honest toil. We can do the same. Do not be afraid nor ashamed to work. Jesus called honest, humble workingmen to be his apostles. Paul could make tents when it was necessary for him to do that.
And do not forget where Jesus spent his time when he visited the big city when he was a boy. He was found in the temple. He was sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them and asking them questions. He thought his parents should know where to look for him. He had to be about his Father’s business even at this early period in his life. So many of our children (and older ones too!) are lost to the cause of Christ when they go to the big cities. Now thousands are moving to our great industrial cities to make “big money.” Some make the money, but with all their making they forget Jesus. How sad!
But Jesus went back to Nazareth and was subject to his parents. Dear boys and girls, remember this worthy example. He left us an example that we should follow in his steps. And then when he was about thirty years of age he traveled sixty or seventy miles to do something that most of the sectarian preachers of our day treat lightly and as a nonessential. Yes, he traveled this great distance to be immersed; and let us remember that he said he was thus doing to fulfill all righteousness without submitting to this command of high heaven?
And remember that immediately after his baptism he was driven into the wilderness, and there he met the devil in open combat. And remember how he did it. Jesus put the devil to rout by the word of God. That is the only way to whip the devil. You cannot whip him with a carnal sword, but you can with the sword of the Spirit. “Son, remember.”
And do not forget that after his baptism he went about doing good. He was busy healing the sick, cleansing the leper, casting out devils, raising the dead, and preaching the gospel, telling people that the kingdom of heaven was at hand. Yes. the kingdom of heaven was at hand in the days of Jesus. He taught his disciples to pray for the coming of the kingdom. And let us remember that about fifty days after the death of Christ the kingdom came with power. Never again do we have the disciples looking forward to the coming of the kingdom after its coming on the first Pentecost after the death, burial, resurrection, and ascension of Christ. We hear them talking about being in the kingdom from then on (Col. 1:13; Rev. 1:9).
Let us remember that Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost. Before going back to heaven he gave the law of salvation. This gospel of the kingdom was to be preached to every creature under heaven. Then the ones who would believe this gospel, repent of their sins, confess Christ, and be baptized would be saved. Do not forget that this is the law that Christ gave. (Matt. 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-16; Luke 24:46-47). Remember, he gave this law to his apostles, and we can turn and read of their acts in the book of Acts, and there we learn how they understood this law. They preached the gospel of Christ, thus making believers, and these believers were told to repent and be baptized unto the remission of sins.
And remember this law is still in force and will be till time shall be no more. Remember that obedience to the gospel makes Christians only and only Christians; that to be anything but a Christian you have to do less or more than obey the gospel of Christ. Why not be satisfied to be a Christian only? Keep right on remembering Jesus, and then go home to heaven in the sweet after while. Remember to live right and worship right, and Jesus will be waiting at the end of the road to say: “Well done.” Blessed consummation!