24th July 2014

More than 2 billion people were watching the opening of the Commonwealth Games, when it happened in Glasgow on 23 July. That is almost a third of the world’s population. To put it into perspective, that would be the whole world population around the year 1925. That is less than 100 years ago that the equal amount of people watching the Commonwealth Games made up the whole human race.

Perhaps you think I am trying to talk about the population growth rate or the amount of people on earth. But I was intrigued by something else. Yes there were many characters and colours on that stage, and it was clear to me that the organisers have put much effort into the fact that they were trying to be politically correct and include every possible humanitarian angle. Even the effort to raise funds for children in need was innovative (and caused me to think, ("why didn’t we get ADRA in there”). The red arrows and queen’s expensive car, the lights and fireworks, the 100 meter long television screen and the miniature bridge were all interesting.

But that was not the thing that really got me. There were so many people on that stage, more than 2000 people took part in staging the opening ceremony, that is a huge cast and they must have worked many hours to pull it off. But that isn’t as impressive. There was something that was so impressive that I had to remember it.

Near the end of the opening ceremony, that huge big 100 meter television screen showed a capture that was true in more than one way. It was a statement that when you look at it one way, would remind you of the politically correct way things are done these days. But if you look at it from a different angle, it supports what the Bible says 100%. And then it got me thinking that I wondered how many of these 2 billion people understand this statement for its real value.

The capture read: “All people are equal”.

Having had a look at the opening ceremony, you could clearly see how this statement was demonstrated. But I also know that there is a way in which all people are equal. The Bible says that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23). That is one sure way in which I know that all humanity are equal. Yes we may be inventive, creative, artful and even good or excellent athletes.

But when the real time comes for us to appear on the big stage of the universe, we “compete” under slightly different rules, and we all start from the same place, with the same handicap. We have all fallen short of the Glory of God.

But that is only half the story. There is good and much better news. At least that is not all that the Bible says, and I was thinking that if they gave me the job of putting things on that big screen at the opening of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, I would have added: Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. (Hebrews 4:1) In this case, His rest means that we still have the opportunity to come to God and be His, be saved. All of humanity who ever lived had the opportunity to be saved by Him because He died a death that bought us from the hold of sin and this world.

Will you take this opportunity to give your life to Him again?

[Jimmy Botha]


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