An old story is told of a small dry good store located in a small rural town. The store was as old as the town and was managed by the grandson of the business’s first owner.
One day a government man from the state’s weights and measures department came to inspect the store. He found that the yardstick being used to sell fabric was one inch too short.
“That’s impossible” said the owner. “That yardstick was put here by my grandfather and was used by my dad. They never would’ve cheated anyone. They were honest, Christian men.”
The inspector paused for a second and then said: “Sir, I’m sure that your father and grandfather were completely honest. In fact, they were so honest what do you think they would have done if they had discovered the yardstick was too short?” Without hesitation, the owner said: “They would’ve made it right without delay…and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.”
Too often, people will not accept plain Bible teaching concerning salvation or church government because that’s not what their parents or grandparents believed. I submit that if those ancestors had found the truth of the Bible with open hearts, they would have changed their beliefs. Will we do less than what they would have done? Which do you think would have made them happiest, knowing that their children have blindly followed some tradition or that they fully accepted God’s teaching.
The Bible teaches that through faith we must obey the gospel plan of salvation (2 The. 1:8). The gospel plan includes repenting of sins (Acts 17:30-31), confessing Christ as the Son of God (Rom. 10:9), and being immersed in water for the purpose of having your sins forgiven resulting in a clear conscience (Rom. 6:1-6; Acts 2:38; 22:16; Gal. 3:27; 1 Pet. 3:21).
Your obedience to the plan of salvation does not in any way condemn the family members who have passed on before you. God is their judge…not you (Rom. 14:10).
Follow Jesus, the author of salvation who gives us an example of obedience so we might be saved through our obedience (Heb. 5:8-9).
Beacon, Vol. 27 #12