A Parable and a Fact

Don't murmur, Christian, for it is a most unchristian, a most ungodly thing to do. Nothing dishonours God more, nothing does greater damage to the soul. It was the chiefest sin of all the sins that Israel committed in the wilderness, for it meant that they did not believe that their God was fit to be trusted. It did not change His merciful care for them, but it aroused His just anger against them.

"Be it content with such things as ye have." Your circumstances have your greatest blessing in view, and God who considers and makes all things work together for your good, knows just where you live and how.

I read a parable that I will pass on to you in my own words.

A child wandered into a garden and was attracted by a beautiful flower growing there. "How lovely how sweet," she exclaimed as she inhaled its fragrance. Then looking down she saw the black soil in which it grew. "What a shame," she cried, "that such a sweet flower should be planted in such dirt; it ought not to be." And she pulled the plant up by its roots and carried it to the water tap to wash the dirt from them, but even as she did so the flower wilted and the plant began to die. And the gardener said, "You have killed my choicest plant." "But I was sorry for it in that black soil," wept the child. "But I chose the spot and collected and mixed the soil in which it grew because I knew that only in them it would come to perfection and now my thought and care and labour have been in vain."

Have you read of the beautiful and useful things that Hiram made for the house of God in Jerusalem? The story of them is told in 1 Kings 7:38-51, and we read, "In the plain of Jordan did the king cast them, in the clay ground between Succoth and Zarthan." The clay ground was a necessity if the house of God was to be furnished with vessels, just as the black soil was necessary to the growth of the fragrant flower. Neither the parable nor the divinely recorded fact require interpretation, the point for us is to receive the instruction. "Neither murmur ye, as some of them murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened to them for ensamples and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he stands take heed lest he fall" (1 Cor. 10).