The Great Christmas Auction

“He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32).

Joyful JesusYears ago there was a very wealthy man who, with his devoted young son, shared a passion for art collecting. Together they traveled around the world, adding only the finest art treasures to their collection. Priceless works by Picasso, Van Gogh, Monet and many others adorned the walls of the family estate.

The widowed elder man watched with satisfaction, as his only child became an experienced art collector. The son’s trained eye and sharp business mind caused his father to beam with pride as they dealt with art collectors around the world.

As winter approached, war engulfed the nation, and the young man left to serve his country. After only a few short weeks, his father received a telegram. His beloved son was missing in action. The art collector anxiously awaited more news, fearing he would never see his son again. Within days, his fears were confirmed. The young man had died while rushing a fellow soldier to a medic.

Distraught and lonely, the old man faced the upcoming Christmas holidays with anguish and sadness. The joy of the season, a season that he and his son had so looked forward to, would visit his house no longer.

knock at the doorOn Christmas morning, a knock on the door awakened the depressed old man. As he walked to the door, the masterpieces of art on the walls only reminded him that his son was not coming home. He opened the door, and a soldier greeted him with a large package in his hand.

“I was a friend of your son,” the soldier said. “I was the one he was rescuing when he died. May I come in for a few moments? I have something to show you.” As the two began to talk, the solider told of how the man’s son had told everyone of his father’s love of fine art.

“I’m an artist,” said the soldier, “and I want to give you this.”

As the old man unwrapped the package, the paper gave way to reveal a portrait of the man’s son, which the soldier had painted. Though the world would never consider it the work of a genius, the painting featured the young man’s face in striking detail.

Overcome with emotion, the man thanked the soldier, promising to hang the picture above the fireplace. A few hours later, after the soldier had departed, the old man set about his task. True to his word, the painting went above the fireplace, pushing aside thousands of dollars of paintings. And then the man sat in his chair and spent Christmas gazing at the gift he had been given.

The following spring, the old man became ill and passed away. The art world was in high anticipation! According to the will of the old man, all of the art would be auctioned on Christmas day, the day he had received his greatest gift.

The day soon arrived and art collectors from around the world gathered to bid on some of the world’s most spectacular paintings. Dreams would be fulfilled this day; greatness would be achieved as many would claim “I have the greatest collection.”

The auction began with a painting that was not on any museum’s list. It was the painting of the man’s son.

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The auctioneer asked for an opening bid. The room was silent. “Who will open the bidding with $100?” he asked. Minutes passed. No one spoke. From the back of the room came, “Who cares about that painting? It’s just a picture of his son. Let’s forget it and go on to the truly valuable items.”

More voices echoed in agreement.

“No, we have to sell this one first,” replied the auctioneer. “Now, who will take the son?”

Finally, a friend of the old man spoke. “Will you take fifty dollars for the painting? That’s all I have. I knew the boy, so I’d like to have it.

fifty dollar bill crumpled“I have a bid of fifty dollars,” called the auctioneer. “Will anyone go higher?”

After more silence, the auctioneer said, “Going once, going twice. Gone.”

The gavel fell. Cheers filled the room and someone exclaimed, “Now we can get on with it and we can bid on these great treasures!” The auctioneer looked at the audience and announced that the auction was over.

Stunned disbelief quieted the room. Someone spoke up and asked, “What do you mean it’s over? What about all of these paintings? There are millions of dollars of art here! We demand that you explain what’s going on!”

“It’s very simple,” the auctioneer replied. “According to the will of the father, whoever takes the son . . . gets it all.”

The Bible says, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32). Receive Jesus into your life, and you get everything that God has to give!

Take the Son, and get it all!

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