I remembered and discussed with my wife an incident involving a 1989 Honda Prelude. We arranged to see the car and the owner of the car and his mother met us to show us the car. The mother watched and commented while the son let me see the car. The car was faded, damaged in several areas and many parts of the car did not work such as the air conditioning, etc. Of great significance is the fact that the car had 330,000 miles on it. The price listed for the car was $1400. The spiritual lesson brought from this episode lies in the negotiation that took place after I test drove the car. The car needed several repairs which I knew I could correct but it would take a few hundred dollars to pay for parts. I offered $1000 dollars for the car and then raised it to $1100 in the scope of the negotiation. The mother and son insisted that they would take a minimum of $1275 and would not budge any further. They had been informed that the engine in the car was worth up to $800 because it was an Acura (an upgraded luxury Honda) engine. What they did not consider was that the value placed on the motor was for a motor with 100,000 miles or less. This engine had 230,000 miles more than 100,000 miles. My wife heard the mother say that “we would be calling them back when we changed our minds”. The mother was right and wrong. I did not call her back but I did change my mind. My offer for the car was FAR too generous for a (then) 22 year old car with 330,000 miles. The car was worth maybe $700-750. By the way, the woman’s husband called us back the next day seeking to reopen negotiations as he saw they had rejected our too generous offer.
The woman and her son thought (and were told) that they had something of relatively high value and they were haughty and confident in their opinions. The lesson is this:
We are Laodicea. We think we are rich and increased with goods. The Father, through His Son, offers us the priceless riches of His character, but we, individually and as a church, say “no thanks, we’re good”. We were and are deceived into thinking that we already have something valuable (the trinity?), not knowing that what we have is wretchedness, misery, blindness, nakedness and poverty. Rev. 3:17. The connection is startling. Think about it, we turn down the Father’s offer to receive His Submissive Son, the only way to salvation, and try to design a different way, that is, according to our liking (a co-eternal, non-submissive, self-existent Son), to the kingdom of God. Of our own, we have nothing!! What makes us think that we can deviate from the word of God and design a unique tritheism/semi-trinity and tell the world we are Trinitarians and expect to receive God’s approval and the latter rain. Like the Israel of old, we have believed the lie told by Korah in the midst of rebellion to God, “…seeing all the congregation are holy, every one of them, and the Lord is among them.” Numbers 16:3. We almost strain our arm or our elbow patting ourselves on the back of how “good” we are. When challenged historically and theologically about our pioneers and their non-trinitarian or anti-trinitarian beliefs we see it good to “rewrite” our history and inoculate our church with wave after wave of contrived Trinitarian assumptions (called triadic statements!??) in the Bible and the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy. Instead of trading our assumptions for a ‘thus saith the Lord’, we will call our pioneers heretics and non-Christians and go so far as to call Ellen White a believer in the Roman church-derived trinity. Instead of saying as a church, ‘let’s study this’ or ‘let’s get this right’, we will seek to put anyone out based on a violation of our written ‘creed’. We are haughty and confident in our opinions of truth. We are ‘told’ and believe that our view of the trinity is not the ‘false’ trinity, and what we as a church have is very valuable. We have nothing of value save that which is given to us by the Father and His Son. Of the Father, we are told by His Son Jesus in John 17:3 that His Father is the “Only True God”. The Father of the Son of God is the Only True God, the Only Source for the universe (there can be only one infinite being in the uni-verse). This Source, the Father, brought forth a Son (John 8:42) and ‘made’ Him equal to Himself. Through the Son, the Father created the angels, the unfallen worlds, the starry hosts and man. John 1:1-3. Because of His great love, the Father gave His Son to be the Savior of mankind after our father Adam sinned. John 3:16. Thus, Christ, who created us and because of His great love to us, became one of us to redeem us. Jesus the Submissive Son is everything to us because he has redeemed us back to the Father. The Son actively continues His work in us by His Spirit.
Another short lesson thinking about this old damaged car. I was unwilling to pay the asking price for a vehicle that needed much work. I had the money to pay for the car but I decided that it wasn’t worth the asking price. The lesson is this, I am that car and you are that car. My Elder Brother, the Son of God arranged to come and see us. He got inside us and saw all of our brokenness, leaks and where we were torn. It turns out that He already loved this type of car because this was His Father’s favorite car. Without asking the price He said He would buy it at whatever price. He knew what He could do with the car and what it could be with His loving care. He paid a high price for us and has not suffered buyer’s remorse, even though we have been difficult to restore. He loves us. His Father loves us. O what love!
May the Father and His Son bless us to see, understand and know this great love.