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The door to the cell opened and Eddy braced himself. A guard grabbed him by the arm. “It’s your turn!” he hissed as he forced him out of the cell. Eddy prayed silently as he was being roughly led down the hallway. He was then pushed out into the arena and saw those who were seated in the coliseum. Many of them were his own people, whom he guessed had been forced to witness his destruction. He wanted to say something that would encourage them but time wouldn’t let him because Chief Much Cruel stood up to speak:
“This resident of Small Faith, this puny insect, is going to fight against one of our best warriors. Guard, give him a sword so that the fight will be fair.”
A guard gave Eddy a sword. Eddy held the weapon and looked at it. He had never used a sword before and he knew that the one he was going up against was going to be very skillful in his weaponry.
“Lord Jesus, be my strength and my help in this,” he prayed.
“Bring out our champion!” Much Cruel commanded jubilantly.
A guard brought out a Small Faith Person who was dressed in armor and had a sword. Eddy noticed that the warrior looked very young. In fact too young to be doing something like this. The warrior went up to him and glared at him in his face. Eddy quickly recognized him.
“Gabriel!” he gasped.
The Small Faith Person didn’t respond. He was ready to eliminate this opponent that was before him.
“Fight!” Much Cruel shouted as he brought his hand down.
Gabriel pulled out his sword. “Are you ready to perish?” he asked smiling wickedly.
Eddy was shocked that a Small Faith Person would be able to give into the heartless and cruelty of the Natives of Doubt. Has Gabriel forgotten about the Good King and that he was part of a civilization that loved Him and others? Eddy knew that his life was at stake but he couldn’t bear the thought of Gabriel losing eternal life. He had to try and reason with the lad.
Gabriel swung his sword and Eddy jumped back to avoid the blade. “Gabriel, this is wrong. You know it’s wrong. Please don’t do this.” Eddy pleaded.
“Begging will not save you,” said Gabriel as he tried again to strike him with his sword. Eddy ducked as the blade went over his head. “I’m not so afraid for myself as I am for you. You’re heading down a path that will lead to death.”
The warrior laughed. “I’m not heading down the path of death. You are! You should be very afraid because I’m going to cut you in pieces and take your head as my trophy.”
The sword was about to come down. Eddy quickly rolled away and the blade hit the ground.
“Fight like a man, you coward!” Gabriel shouted.
Eddy ran to try and get away. “Dear Master, please open his heart so that he may see his spiritual condition.” he prayed as he gasped for breath.
The Small Faith People in the coliseum also prayed. They asked the Good King to save Eddy from the heartless warrior. Benjamin also prayed for him.
Eddy stood up against the wall of the arena. He watched as Gabriel was advancing toward him with his sword.
“Don’t you know that those who delight in violence will not be a part of the Good King’s Kingdom? There will be no eternal life for those who enjoy hurting or killing people.” Eddy said to Gabriel.
The young Small Faith Person answered as he got nearer to Eddy:
“I don’t believe in the Good King anymore. Everything about Him and His Kingdom are fairy tales. Myths are what they are! And you are so stupid to believe in such ridiculous things! I have learned that if you want to get through this life you have to fight and show no mercy toward those who stand up against you. Violence and aggression are the keys to survival in this World.”
“Oh, you poor soul! You have been deceived by our enemies and have adapted their lifestyle.” Eddy cried.
Gabriel laughed. “It is you who has been deceived. You believe in this invisible God King and are trying to persuade me to believe in such fancies again.” He was now a couple feet from Eddy. “Your words will not prevail against me fool!”
Eddy swallowed hard and closed his eyes.
In the crowd the Master of Darkness and his minions watched with glee. The young warrior was completely under their control. He may have lost Benjamin but there was no way the former Small Faith Person in the arena was going to return to the Most High.
“Oh, boy! Oh, boy! It looks like Eddy is going to die!” said a demon rubbing his hands eagerly. “And it’s about time too.”
Eddy kept his eyes closed and thought about heavenly things like the Good King, His Kingdom, and being in eternity with Him, Karen, and many other people who have believed in Him. These inspiring thoughts helped him to not be afraid as he waited for the sword to take his life.
When Gabriel was right in front of him the Master of Darkness was excited. “Yes! Get him! Strike him down!” he shouted.
The Small Faith People prayed harder.
Gabriel positioned his sword. “So much for believing in your God King!” he laughed as he got ready to cut off the brave little man’s head. But to his shock and to everyone who was watching, the sword abruptly stopped in mid air.
“What in the…!” the warrior exclaimed. He tried to move the sword but it stayed right where it was in mid air.
Eddy opened his eyes and when he saw what just took place he breathed a sigh of relief. Thank you, for saving my life, Your Majesty.”
Gabriel grunted and growled, but all of his efforts to move the stuck sword were to no avail. “What kind of nonsense is this?” he inquired.
The Small Faith People cheered and praised the Good King for rescuing Eddy.
Chief Much Cruel thought he was dreaming so he pinched himself. But when he saw that this was no dream he muttered excitedly, “This isn’t happening! This isn’t happening! There’s no way that this is real! Maybe all the sour grape juice I drank is starting to effect my mind.” He then turned to his wife. “Dear, please tell me that the sword really isn’t frozen in mid air. Please tell me that I’m seeing things.”
The queen chuckled. “You’re not drunk, my husband. What you are seeing really is happening.”
“But that’s impossible! First my tigers and now this! What kind of magic do these Believers have?” Much Cruel said feeling apprehensive at witnessing more power that was unknown to him.
Back in the arena Gabriel gave up. Realizing that he was not going to win this time he fell to his knees and cried. His dream of being a part of the Natives of Doubt was shattered.
“I’m no warrior! I’m just a little person with nothing! It’s not fair!” he sobbed.
Eddy walked over to the lad and touched his shoulder.
Gabriel angrily removed his hand. “Get away from me! This is all your fault!” he shouted.
Eddy got closer to him. “I didn’t do anything, Gabriel. This power is from the Good King of Heaven. He is trying to bring you to reason. He loves you and He wants you to be a part of His people again.”
Gabriel wiped his eyes and looked up at Eddy. “Why are you being so nice to me? I tried to kill you.”
“Because you have been deceived by the Master of Darkness. You fell for his lies and I want to share the Truth with you.”
Gabriel stood up and removed his armor. “I want to believe in the Good King again. Can you please help me, Edward Matthews.”
Eddy embraced him. “Welcome back, Gabriel.”
The coliseum erupted with shouts of praise to the Good King. The Master of Darkness left the in a rage with his minions behind him.
Chief Much Cruel and his people were totally baffled. Could it be that the God of the Small Faith People and the Lightbearers was more powerful than their gods? “I need to go,” said the chief as he left his seat with his guards following behind him. The queen stayed in her seat and pondered on the events that took place at the games. She wanted to know more about this Good King and His mighty power to save.
To Be Continued.
As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:9.
Our plans are not always God’s plans….
In His loving care and interest for us, often He who understands us better than we understand ourselves refuses to permit us selfishly to seek the gratification of our own ambition…. Often our plans fail that God’s plans for us may succeed….
In the future life the mysteries that here have annoyed and disappointed us will be made plain. We shall see that our seemingly unanswered prayers and disappointed hopes have been among our greatest blessings.
We are not now sufficiently advanced in spiritual attainments to comprehend the mysteries of God. But when we shall compose the family of heaven, these mysteries will be unfolded before us….
Then much will be revealed in explanation of matters upon which God now keeps silence because we have not gathered up and appreciated that which has been made known of the eternal mysteries. The ways of Providence will be made clear; the mysteries of grace through Christ will be unfolded. That which the mind cannot now grasp, which is hard to be understood, will be explained. We shall see order in that which has seemed unexplainable; wisdom in everything withheld; goodness and gracious mercy in everything imparted. Truth will be unfolded to the mind, free from obscurity, in a single line, and its brightness will be endurable. The heart will be made to sing for joy. Controversies will be forever ended, and all difficulties will be solved.
All that has perplexed us in the providences of God will in the world to come be made plain. The things hard to be understood will then find explanation. The mysteries of grace will unfold before us. Where our finite minds discovered only confusion and broken promises, we shall see the most perfect and beautiful harmony. We shall know that infinite love ordered the experiences that seemed most trying. As we realize the tender care of Him who makes all things work together for our good, we shall rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.
From “Maranatha”, by Ellen White
Picture is from Google Images.
The Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7.
Often we regard as hopeless subjects the very ones whom Christ is drawing to Himself…. Many will be in heaven who their neighbors supposed would never enter there. Man judges from appearance, but God judges the heart.
Some among the redeemed will have laid hold of Christ in the last hours of life, and in heaven instruction will be given to these, who, when they died, did not understand perfectly the plan of salvation.
To Jesus in His agony on the cross there came one gleam of comfort. It was the prayer of the penitent thief…. In Jesus, bruised, mocked, and hanging upon the cross, he sees the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world. Hope is mingled with anguish in his voice as the helpless, dying soul casts himself upon a dying Saviour. “Lord, remember me,” he cries, “when thou comest into thy kingdom.” Quickly the answer came…. Verily I say unto thee today, Thou shalt be with Me in paradise.
Such faith may be represented by the eleventh hour laborers who receive as much reward as do those who have labored for many hours. The thief asked in faith, in penitence, in contrition. He asked in earnestness, as if he fully realized that Jesus could save him if He would.
Those whom Christ commends in the judgment may have known little of theology, but they have cherished His principles…. Among the heathen are those who worship God ignorantly, those to whom the light is never brought by human instrumentality, yet they will not perish. Though ignorant of the written law of God, they have heard His voice speaking to them in nature, and have done the things that the law required. Their works are evidence that the Holy Spirit has touched their hearts, and they are recognized as the children of God.
How surprised and gladdened will be the lowly among the nations, and among the heathen, to hear from the lips of the Saviour, “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me”! How glad will be the heart of Infinite Love as His followers look up with surprise and joy at His words of approval!
From “Maranatha”, by Ellen White
Picture is from Google Images.
Well done, thou good and faithful servant: … enter thou into the joy of thy lord. Matthew 25:21.
As your senses delight in the attractive loveliness of the earth, think of the world that is to come, that shall never know the blight of sin and death; where the face of nature will no more wear the shadow of the curse. Let your imagination picture the home of the saved, and remember that it will be more glorious than your brightest imagination can portray. In the varied gifts of God in nature we see but the faintest gleaming of His glory. It is written, “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9.
By and by the gates of heaven will be thrown open to admit God’s children, and from the lips of the King of glory the benediction will fall on their ears like richest music, “Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” Matthew 25:34.
Then the redeemed will be welcomed to the home that Jesus is preparing for them.
Then I saw Jesus lead the redeemed company to the gate of the city. He laid hold of the gate and swung it back on its glittering hinges and bade the nations that had kept the truth enter in. Within the city there was everything to feast the eye. Rich glory they beheld everywhere. Then Jesus looked upon His redeemed saints; their countenances were radiant with glory; and as He fixed His loving eyes upon them. He said, with His rich, musical voice, “I behold the travail of My soul, and am satisfied. This rich glory is yours to enjoy eternally. Your sorrows are ended. There shall be no more death, neither sorrow nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain.” …
Language is altogether too feeble to attempt a description of heaven. As the scene rises before me, I am lost in amazement. Carried away with the surpassing splendor and excellent glory, I lay down the pen, and exclaim, “Oh, what love! what wondrous love!” The most exalted language fails to describe the glory of heaven or the matchless depths of a Saviour’s love.
From “Maranatha”, by Ellen White