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Sermon Illustrations: Atonement

A judge had to sentence a friend of his for breaking the law. This presented a bit of a dilemma. If he let him off, he would be a good friend but not a good judge. If he sentenced him, he would be a good judge, but not a good friend. He sentenced his friend to pay a fine of $10,000, stepped around the bench and paid his friend's fine.

The camp director ran the most amazing camps. They were well organised; there were games, sports and everybody had a great time. One of the boys, Nicky, was from a severely dysfunctional home. He disrupted everything, bullied smaller kids, and swore at others. The camp director had an idea. When he shared it with his leaders, they were shocked. He called Nicky in and got him to answer honestly how many stripes of the cane he thought each of his items of bad behaviour was worth. When they had gone through all of his misdeeds, and added up the total, it came to 25. "You can't cane me that much," said Nicky defiantly. "It wouldn't be human." "You're right," said the camp director. "I'm not going to cane you 25, or five, or anything." The director took off his shirt and sat on a chair hugging its back. He took all 25, by which time Nicky understood the meaning of grace.

The only reason you are alive today is because something has died. Each time you eat, something has to die first. Every day we endorse the principle that life comes out of death.