Friday, May 7, 2010

Not as advertised

We recently made a change in cell providers. I purchased a smart phone for me and a semi-smart phone for my wife. I had listened to the various advertisements, thought I had researched the various models adequately, and then made the commitment to execute the purchase and activation of the new service and phones.

Little did I now that for all of the hype, my new smart phone lacks a basic feature that my two previous phones had--the ability to initiate a telephone call using voice recognition from a Bluetooth headset. This little bit of information was not available in the material I viewed. Although it has many capabilities, this is a basic feature that should be present, especially since so many states either have, or are shortly going to have restrictions against hand-held phones being used while driving.

This is much like so many things that we see. Beer and other alcoholic beverages are advertised, showing the "good times" that one may have. What is not shown are the consequences of its use. We see the glamor, not the hangover. We see personal body sprays advertised to young men showing that if they use them, beautiful young women will be irresistibly attracted to them. We do not see the consequences of casual sex with multiple partners--venereal disease, emotional wreckage, skyrocketing out-of-wedlock births, etc.

The biggest failure to disclose the truth happened in Eden. The serpent said that there would be no negative effects if Eve took and ate the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Adam watched, and when he did not see anything bad happen to Eve immediately, also ate. It was only afterward that he understood.

In the case of the phone, I did find that the media system in our automobile had the capability of supplying what the phone lacked so I am able to dial hands-free and stay within the laws of the various states through which we will be driving this summer. Our lives have a similar problem. In Adam, we all sinned and are separate from God. The Bible says that we are ". . . dead in our trespasses . . . " (Ephesians 2:5). We think we can reform ourselves--make ourselves good enough so that God will have to accept us. We deceive ourselves, because Paul, quoting Psalm 14, said, "None is righteous, no, not one . . . " (Romans 3:10ff) We, like the phone, require someone outside of ourselves to save us.

That one is Jesus Christ. "God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him" (1 John 4:9b, see also v. 10). So, if we repent (which means to turn away from sin and to Jesus Christ) and place our faith in Him, we can have eternal life.

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