On The Father's Decision – Author Unknown
The church's pastor stood up and gave a very brief introduction of his childhood friend. With that, an elderly man stepped up to the pulpit to speak.
"I want to tell you a story. A father, his son, and a friend of his son were sailing off the Pacific Coast," he began, "when a fast approaching storm blocked any attempt to get back to shore. The waves were so high, that even though the father was an experienced sailor, he could not keep the boat upright, and the three were swept into the ocean."
The old man hesitated for a moment, making eye contact with two teenagers who were, for the first time since the service began, looking somewhat interested in his story.
He continued, "Grabbing a rescue line, the father had to make the most excruciating decision of his life ... to which boy he would throw the other end of the line? He only had seconds to make the decision. The father knew that his son was a Christian, and he also knew that his son's friend was not. There was agony in his decision. As the father yelled out, 'I love you, son!' he threw the line to his son's friend. By the time he pulled the friend back to the capsized boat, his son had disappeared beyond the raging swells into the black of night. His body was never recovered."
"The father," he continued, "knew his son would step into eternity with Jesus, and he could not bear the thought of his son's friend stepping into an eternity without Jesus. Therefore, he sacrificed his son. How great is the love of God that He should do the same thing for us."
With that, the old man turned and sat back down in his chair until the Church service ended. The he left.
As he was leaving two men approached the old man and said politely, "That was a nice story you told us, but I don’t think it was very realistic."
The old man glanced down at the Bible in his hand, then he looked up and said,
“I suppose it isn't a very realistic story.” Then slowly walking away he turned and said, “There’s just one more thing to know:
I was at the other end of that rope. I was the son’s friend.”