Haven't been feeling well, so this morning I've just been resting and watching TV. Found one of my favorite old shows on, "The Beverly Hillbillies" on. (After 44 years, this show still holds up.) Anyway, in this episode, Jed is feeling useless and decides to start doing handiman work for people free of charge, just so that he feels like he is useful and doing something. Mr. Drysdale decides that what Jed needs is a hobby, and he sets out trying to find something that Jed will enjoy doing. He shows him a ship in a bottle that it took Mr. Cushman 3 years to build. Jed see's this as wasting a ship and a bottle, not to mention a waste of 3 years. He presents him with the idea of stamp collecting and he thinks it's entirely too expensive to write letters at that price. Then he shows him a coin collection and a dime that the owner paid $12,000 for. Jed says, "Your friend got snookered!" Mr. Drysdale explains that the dime was very old, very rare and worth the price. Jed says, "If you put that dime into one of those candy machines, would it give you $12,000 worth of candy?" Drysdale tells him that it would only give a dimes worth. Jed tells him that he needs to go help his friend because he needs help because he got snookered.
As I'm watching this, the thought hit me how many people have been "snookered" in life. They have things that they value, even treasure and they've placed their trust in these things or activities.
I've often said that I think the idea of paying the prices that people pay for diamonds, pearls, so called "precious stones" and so on is just stupid. It's a rock! It's a piece of sand that got into a clam that was unwanted. The only reason a diamond is worth that much is because someone, somewhere decided they could charge that much for it. Tomorrow we could wake up to find that someone has decided diamonds are worthless and they would be. We could be told that now our money is worthless, and it would be. Don't think so? Hold on awhile and you will find out. I remember just a few years ago when Germany went to the Euro and those who had chosen to hold on to Marks found out that they were no longer of value. Just like that, it was not worth the price of the paper it was printed on.
Right now, people are being advised to buy gold. The price of gold has sky rocketed. But what will that gold buy you if gold is declared illegal to own once again? Having all the gold in the world would mean nothing if you could not trade it. People are putting their trust in gold, silver, diamonds, stock and bonds... and they are being snookered. No, I'm not saying that we should not prepare for the future financially, but I'm thinking of the big picture. What about the real future? What about eternity? The reality is that a man may be a billionaire and own houses and lands, jewels and gold, and still be absolutely without hope. They may be the most famous person in the world; someone whose face is known around the world... but if they are not known by Jesus, then they've been snookered!
Let me finish this with the words to one of my favorite old songs:
I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold;
I’d rather be His than have riches untold;
I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands,
I’d rather be led by His nail pierced hand.
Than to be a king of a vast domain
Or be held in sin’s dread sway,
I’d rather have Jesus than anything
This world affords today.
I’d rather have Jesus than men’s applause;
I’d rather be faithful to His dear cause;
I’d rather have Jesus than world-wide fame,
I’d rather be true to His holy name.
He’s fairer than lilies of rarest bloom;
He’s sweeter than honey from out of the comb;
He’s all that my hungering spirit needs,
I’d rather have Jesus and let Him lead.