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The Greatest of These is Love (Part 2 of 2)

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
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January 28, 2022 5:00 am

The Greatest of These is Love (Part 2 of 2)

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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January 28, 2022 5:00 am

Dutch watchmaker Corrie ten Boom explains how she got involved in hiding Jews from the Nazis, how she survived years in a concentration camp, and how the Lord helped her forgive her captors. (Part 2 of 2)

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Every Christian is called to be the light of the world and every Christian must be ready to tell the way of salvation to anyone who needs it.

Well certainly we're called to lead people to the Lord and we might do that with friends, but imagine sharing the Gospel with a mortal enemy. Today we'll be hearing more from author and speaker Corrie Ten Boom, and your host as Focus President and author Jim Daly, I'm John Fuller. Well, as we said last time, Corrie and her family risked their lives to help 800 Jewish people during World War II.

As members of the Dutch Reformed Church, the Ten Boom family strongly believe that all humans are made in the image of God, and that belief fueled their resistance to the Nazis. Sadly, Corrie is the lone survivor of her family's incarceration in Hitler's concentration camps. Her 84-year-old father died soon after they were imprisoned, and her sister, Betsy, died a week before Corrie was miraculously released. I hope you can sit back with John and I and enjoy the rest of Corrie's story.

There's some good stuff coming up. And here she is now, Corrie Ten Boom, on Focus on the Family. You all have heard of that terrible time that we have had in Holland, when the Germans came, and the leader, Adolf Hitler, and he intended to kill all the Jewish people.

We started to save as many as we could. Once there came a man to me and said, will you save my wife? She is arrested. She has saved Jewish people, and now she is in a police station, and there is one policeman who will run the risk to set her free if we pay him 600 guilders.

But I have no money. When that man came back, I gave him 600 guilders. That man was a whistling, a betrayer.

His wife was not at all in prison. But the Gestapo, the police of the enemy, had said, find out if Corrie Ten Boom saves Jewish people. And he thought, I can do it and make some money. And he made some money.

He went home with 600 guilders. But five minutes later, the Gestapo surrounded our house, and we were all arrested. And after a war, that man was sentenced to death because he had caused the death of many Dutch people. And I heard that I wrote him.

I, myself, have suffered terribly in three different prisons. But I have forgiven you. And that is because Jesus is in my heart. And that man wrote me that you could forgive me is such a great miracle that I have said, Jesus, when you give such a love in the heart of your followers, there's hope for me. And that man was brought to death that same week.

But he was reconciled with God. And God had used me, who had hated him, to bring him to the Lord. I had a little Bible. When I was brought into that concentration camp, Raffensbruck, I had a small Bible, but a whole Bible, Old and New Testament, specially printed for what they called the underground workers.

It was very small. I had it on my back. But when we entered, I saw that we all had to be searched.

And I saw that they took away everything that the prisoners had hidden under their clothing. And I got scared. I said, Oh, God, God, these people may not see me. God, send your angels and that they surround me. But then I thought, yes, but angels are spirits, and you can look through a spirit. I said, God, make your angels untransparent today. You can pray very unorthodox when you are in great need. But God did it.

God did it. The woman who stood in front of me was searched, and then back she stood behind me, and they did not see me. So I came with my Bible in the prison. Strange story.

No, that's not strange. That is what is written in the Bible. Angels are ministering spirits sent to this planet for your and my help. And there are far more angels than demons. So we can know that those who are at our side are far more and far stronger than those who are against us.

And that's what I have experienced. Now, when I came in that prison, we had to live with 700 prisoners in a room that was built for 200. It was terrible dirty, and very soon our clothing were full of lice. Those lice have caused many sicknesses, but in some way they have helped us, for the gods would never come into our room.

They were afraid to get lice from us. That was good. The Bible was a forbidden book, but twice a day we had a Bible message in Baruch 28, and God had used for that angels and lice. God can use everything. Hallelujah.

God can use everything. And what a joy many of the people around me were killed or died, but many died with Jesus' name on their lips. And that was worthwhile. Even Betsy's death and all the suffering that I had to endure. Once Betsy said to me, Corrie, when we are free, we must travel over the world.

We can tell from experience that the light of Jesus Christ is stronger than the deepest darkness. A week later she died. Another week later I was set free by a blunder of men and a miracle of God, for one other week later they killed all the women of my age. So I became a tramp for the Lord. 26 years I have traveled over the world, and I could bring the Gospel to many people, also behind the iron curtain. Oh, it was a joy. It is always a joy when we work in Russia and in the other communist countries. You know, we bring there, we smuggle as many Bibles as we can.

I will never forget the first time that I came in Moscow. I had a big red suitcase and it was full of Russian Bibles and Christian literature. And I saw how the custom officer ransacked every suitcase.

And I got scared. I thought, when he find what is in my suitcase, what will he do? Perhaps he will send me to prison or send me back to Holland. Of course he will take away the Bibles. And then I started to pray. Now, I like to pray with an open Bible. I said, Lord, you have said in Jeremiah 1, God watches over his word to perform it. Now, Lord, these Bibles in my suitcase, that is your word. Now, with my hand on Jeremiah 1, I pray, will you watch over your word, my Bibles, to smuggle them. That's not what Jeremiah said. But you know, I found out it does not matter so much if you pray with an open Bible in your prayers, that first the Lord says, no, you must have a very sound and good execution before I will listen.

No, the Lord looks at your heart. And you know what I saw? The same moment that I prayed it, I saw around my big suitcase light beings. I saw for the first and only time in my life angels. And the moment that I saw them, they disappeared. They didn't disappear, but I couldn't see them any longer. But my fear also had disappeared.

I knew those who are with me are far more and stronger than those who are against me. And at last the men came to my suitcase. He said, is it your suitcase? Yes, sir.

There's a heavy one. Yes, sir. Oh, wait, wait, lady, I have time. I can bring it to your car. And he brought a suitcase to my car. I have almost shouted hallelujah. I didn't do that. But what a joy to know that all the promises of the Bible are in Jesus' yay and amen and say that tremendous privilege that you have, that you can love your enemies.

That was for me one of the greatest lessons that I learned. I was some time ago in a cell in Africa with a man who was sentenced to death a political prisoner. I was so sorry. I asked him, say, do you know about Jesus? He said, yes.

I have a Bible at home. I know that Jesus died at the cross for the sins of the whole world also for my sins. I was so happy that he knew it. But then I asked him, say, do you know who have caused your imprisonment and your death sentence?

He said, yes. I can tell you all the names of those who have betrayed me and caused my death sentence, and I hate them. I opened my Bible and I read what Jesus says in Matthew 6. When you do not forgive those who have sinned against you, your Heavenly Father will not forgive you your sins.

It was Jesus who said it must be true. But a man said, I cannot. I'm not able.

I'm German strong. I have wife and children and now I must die. I said, I understand that you cannot forgive. And then I told what Jesus had done in my heart. How I could bring that man who had really by his betrayal murdered four of my beloved to the Lord. I told him a little experience some time ago that I was in Berlin and there came a man to me. And that man said to me, do you know me? Suddenly I saw that man.

That was one of the most cruel guards in Ravensbrück. And that man said, I have found the Lord Jesus as my savior. I have brought all my cruel sins to the Lord. And I know from the Bible that I have forgiveness. And then I prayed, Oh God, give me the privilege that I ask one of my very victims forgiveness.

And now I saw that you were speaking here in Berlin. And now I ask you, Frau Landenboom, will you forgive me my cruelties? And I must confess you that moment there came a bitterness in my heart.

And I thought who my dying sister had suffered under that man. But then suddenly I said, Lord, I thank you for Romans 5.5. Thank you, Jesus, that you have brought into my heart God's love through the Holy Spirit who has given to me. And thank you, Father, that your love is stronger than my bitterness and hatred. And that moment my heart was full of the Holy Spirit and the fruit of the Spirit love. And I could say to that man, brother, give me your hand. And I shook hands with him and I said, I forgive you everything. And it was as if I felt God's love stream through my arm when I shook hands with that man. When I told this to that prisoner in Africa, he sent his wife a message. And this message was, don't hate, love the people who have brought me here.

You are not able. I am not able either, but Jesus in us is able. You and I have to be the light of the world. And I like to illustrate that with my flashlight. You know, this flashlight doesn't give light. It's not broken, but I have only one battery in it. I need, of course, two batteries. Now this is like your and my heart, that first battery that is what happened when you said your first yes to Jesus.

So that real decision. And if there are here who have never done it, I hope you will do it tonight. And do you realize that when you say yes to Jesus, you really meant yes that the angels rejoiced? For your soul is very, very precious in God's eyes.

And the moment that you receive the Lord Jesus, I told you already, all the promises of the Bible are yours. I asked the lady, say, have you ever received the Lord Jesus as your savior? She said, I go every Sunday to the church. I said, that's good, but a mouse born in a biscuit tin is therefore not yet a biscuit.

Do you know? To be in the church doesn't make you a child of God. She said, but my father and mother are very fine children of God. I said, but God has no grandchildren.

You have to make a decision because the Lord loves you. And he likes to hear that you say, yes, Lord Jesus, I thank you that you love me and I will love you. Thank you that you died at the cross for me.

Now I'm glad she did it, that lady. But now, there comes such a terrific joy in your heart when you know that your sins are forgiven, that many people say, Hallelujah, I am safe. That's the end. Now you may say Hallelujah, but don't say it is the end. It is the beginning.

That moment you must cash your checks. You must take all the promises of the Bible and you must learn to live as limitless rich king's children. And one of the great promises of the Bible is that Jesus said, I will send you the Holy Spirit. And the Bible says, be filled with the Spirit. And that is that second battery. And that second battery, the fullness of the Holy Spirit gives you to be the light of the world.

But I could not get it in my flashlight because it is full of rags. And you know these rags are unrepented sins. This is pride. This is jealousy, envy. This one is unclean thoughts, unclean deeds, unclean words.

This is self selfishness. These are occult sins. Now I'm going to ask you something. Will you tonight pray and will you say, surge me, O God, and know my heart today? That is said in the Psalms as a beautiful prayer. You can also say, Lord, show me if there are rags in my flashlight.

And that's just the same. And then the Lord will show you and say, yes, you are selfish. You are dishonest. You are a liar. And whatever the Lord says, don't make an excuse for the blood of Jesus has never cleansed an excuse. But say, yes, Lord, I am, I have lied. Will you forgive me? And then repent. And repentance means asking forgiveness and then in the power of the Lord, turn away from your sins.

And that is necessary. There was a pickpocket who was, who was a very good pickpocket. He stole about 50, 60 watches every week. And then he was converted. He said, now I am a Christian. I steal only five or six.

No. When Jesus shows his great love for sinners, when that woman that was found in adultery was brought to him, the Lord said, I don't throw a stone on you. And then he said, go and sin no more. And that is what Jesus can say. For he bids his fly and gives his wings. And when you have brought your sins to the Lord, then claim the fullness of the Holy Spirit. And the fruit of the Spirit is love and peace and kindness and goodness and self-control. And then you are the life.

He does not do it. I would say life is flesh life. I think I've overlooked a little rag. You see, sometimes when we are very decent sinners, there can be such a little decent sin in our heart. Just a little bit of self pity, a little white lie, but your heart must be filled with the Holy Spirit and the Lord will do it. He will make you really the light of the world.

And that is a great joy. We have not to strive and to try and to try. It is not try, it is trust.

It is not do, but done. Our God has planned for us great victory through his Son. People pray, pray for your fellow Christians. You know, half of the greatest half of the body of Christ is suffering persecution. And watch what he said, when my feet were whipped, my hand felt pain. And the feet are whipped off the Christians over a great part of the world. Pray for your fellow Christians in these countries and be sure that you cash your check so that you will be strong in times when you should come in difficulties of persecution. And the great joy is when you surrender all to the Lord. He will fill your heart with the Holy Spirit.

And the Holy Spirit is a spirit not of fear, but of love and of power and a sound mind. I have here a glove that cannot do anything. But when my hand is in the glove, it can cook, it can write, it can do many things. No, I know that is the glove, that's not the glove, that's the hand in the glove. You and I are nothing but gloves. And the hand, that is the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit does the job that he makes you children of the light, the light in this very dark world. But you must give room to the Holy Spirit when my hand is only in the midst of the glove.

Now the glove cannot do anything. No, you must surrender every finger, every corner of your life to the Lord and he will fill you with the Holy Spirit. Hallelujah. Amen. We pray. Thank you, Lord, that there is such an ocean of love available. That love that you have brought into our heart through the Holy Spirit. Thank you, Jesus, that you did that. And thank you, Father, that that love in us is sufficient and more than sufficient to overcome the problems that we have to face when we come home.

When we go to our work, we pray and thank you, Lord, that your love still stands over when all else has fallen. What an amazing example of how to share Christ's love and his forgiveness as we've listened to Dutch resistance leader Miss Corrie Ten Boom. What a mighty woman in Christ she was, John.

And here's the rest of the story. After her release from the concentration camp, Corrie traveled across Germany by train until she reached the Netherlands, where she reunited with surviving members of her extended family. After World War II ended, she was invited to share her testimony in more than 60 countries and was honored by the State of Israel for her work during the war.

Her life story, The Hiding Place, was published in 1971 and quickly became an international bestseller. Corrie moved to California a few years later and went home to be with the Lord in 1983 on her 91st birthday. What a glorious day that must have been as heaven opened the doors and she entered in.

I'm sure it was. And as we said at the end of the program last time, Corrie is a tremendous example of a person who forgives because it was what the Lord commanded us to do. And He can empower us to do it in our day and age too. And if you're struggling with a situation where forgiveness is needed, please give us a call. Our caring staff would be honored to listen to your story and pray with you.

And if your situation warrants it, they can set up a free callback from one of our Christian counselors, someone who specializes in the area of concern that you're going through. And let me remind you, these resources are available thanks to donors like you. And I'd invite you to make a contribution today. And when you make a donation of any amount, I'll send you a copy of Corrie's book, The Hiding Place. And if you prefer an audio experience, visit our website to get the download of our radio theater production of Corrie's story.

It's the ultimate theater of the mind and you'll feel like you've traveled back in time. So get a copy today. And you can do that when you call 800, the letter A and the word family, 800-232-6459, or donate online and request the book, The Hiding Place.

We'll have the links in the episode notes. Have a great weekend and be sure to be back with us on Monday as Lindsay Snyder, the president of In-N-Out Burger shares her long journey to find God's love. I also felt just a lot of shame and felt like I was kind of kicked out too. You know, like I can't, I can't be a Christian now or I can't be, I was a Christian, but I can't be what I'm supposed to be because I've already failed, you know.

Right. On behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, thanks for joining us for this Focus on the Family podcast. I'm John Fuller asking you to leave a rating for us in your podcast app and tell a friend to listen in as well. Join us next time as we once more help you and your family thrive in Christ.

Is it possible to love your spouse without expecting anything in return? Here at Focus on the Family, we're excited about season five of the Loving Well podcast. I'm John Fuller and I'll be joined by my friends and colleagues, Dr. Greg Smalley and his wife Erin, as we discuss practical ways you can show love and appreciation to your mate. You'll find the Loving Well podcast at slash loving well. That's slash loving well.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-16 16:19:05 / 2023-06-16 16:27:52 / 9

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