Sunday, 29 November -0001 18:42

Youth Page

Written by Peter Langbroek
Bible Stories are Meant for Giving Thanks

It was still light that summer evening as a little girl sat up on her bed waiting for her mom. It was story time! Mother looked at the bookshelf, and there, between 'Sleeping Beauty' and 'Frog and Toad Together' was the 'Children's Bible'. Mother pulled it out, sat on the bed next to her daughter, who then came close and snuggled next to her.

She found the page--page 120. She read the title: 'Crossing the Red Sea'. The little girl looked at the picture of horses and chariots and strong men chasing a crowd of people in the background. Mother read: "Continuing their journey from Succoth, the Israelites camped at Etham, at the edge of the wilderness. And the Lord went before them..."

Boys and girls, I'm sure you've been there next to your mom or dad while they read or told a Bible story to you. Or it could have been your Sunday school teacher, schoolteacher, or maybe you will hear or you have heard some Bible stories at Vacation Bible School. TheyÕre interesting and exciting, aren't they, especially 'David and Goliath' or the one the mother read to her daughter, 'The Crossing of the Red Sea'?

Yet, though they're exciting and interesting, I hope that's not all. For then they hold the same value to you as would ' Sleeping Beauty' or 'Frog and Toad Together'. But, you may say, "They teach us good morals too!" I hope that's not all either. Many stories teach us good morals too.

Bible stories soar above all stories, and they're stories that should become a part of your whole life--even your heart. Let me show you what I mean by giving you Jethro as an example.

Jethro was excited when he heard the Israelites had crossed the Red Sea. News spread through the wilderness of the dead Egyptians and floating chariots. They heard about the parting of the Red Sea and saw the large crowd of Israelites assembled on the other side. Hearing this news, Jethro wanted to meet Moses. He took Moses' sons and Zipporah, Moses' wife, to meet his son-in-law. When they met, they embraced one another, asked how they were doing, and entered the tent to hear what had happened.

Jethro sat there, intently listening to Moses tell the story of the 'Crossing of the Red Sea'. He was excited and interested. He heard the message of the story, for Moses told his father-in-law Òall that the Lord had done unto Pharoah and to the Egyptians for Israel's sake, and all the travail that had come upon them by the way, and how the Lord delivered themÓ (Exodus 18: 8).

But Jethro didn't stop there. He rejoiced! "And Jethro rejoiced for all the goodness which the Lord had done to Israel, whom he had delivered out of the hand of the EgyptiansÓ (Exodus 18: 9).

He went further. He confessed the Lord to be the true God. "And Jethro said, 'Blessed be the Lord, who hath delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of Pharoah, who hath delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. Now I know that the Lord is greater than all gods: for in the thing wherein they dealt proudly, He was above themÕÓ (Exodus 18: 10,11).

And finally, he joined Moses, Aaron, and the seventy elders to worship God. There they went up to an altar on a hill, and Jethro, being a priest, offered a burnt sacrifice to God. There they sat, eating together, enjoying fellowship with each other and their God.

Boys and girls, Jethro is our example. He heard the same Bible story the mother read to her daughter. Rejoicing, confessing, and worshipping, he teaches us that Bible stories are stories of what God has done, for us to believe. He knew the story was not just any story, but it was a story of what God had done for His people, and he joined them in worshipping at an altar of sacrifice, on a hill, eating bread with them.

Bible stories are God's message of deliverance to you, pointing to Jesus' sacrifice on the cross to deliver us from our sins. When someone has finished reading, speaking, or you've just read the Bible stories, join Jethro and all believers in heartfelt thanks to God for such great deliverance.

Hear what Jesus said about all believers who believe in the Lord and His Word: "And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 8: 11)." Sitting with those you've heard about in the Word of God? Imagine that!

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