Marshall Matt Dillon, with his six gun or with his bare knuckles, won the fight to save Miss Kitty, Doc Adams and the rest of Dodge City’s town-folk. He was the rescuer in nearly every episode of “Gun Smoke.”
In the 1960’s, the Dynamic Duo of Batman and Robin, the Boy Wonder, rescued Gotham City from the Penguin, Cat Woman and the Riddler with a Pow! Bang! Blam! and a “Holy ancient memories, Batman!”
Ian Fleming’s James Bond, MI-6 British secret agent 007, circled the globe, got the girl, defeated Dr. No and Goldfinger, and rescued the globe from nuclear annihilation or worse.
In the Old Testament story of David and Goliath, David rescued the Israelites. David, a shepherd-boy with a slingshot and five smooth stones, appeared to be an unlikely hero. Goliath, the Philistine, was a seasoned military-man, who stood “nine feet, nine inches tall and wore a bronze helmet and bronze scale armor that weighed one hundred twenty-five pounds. There was bronze armor on his shins, and a bronze javelin was slung between his shoulders. His spear shaft was like a weaver’s beam, and the iron point of his spear weighed fifteen pounds. In addition, a shield-bearer was walking in front of him” (1 Samuel 17:4–7, CSB). David foreshadowed our Great Rescuer when he stood alone against the enemy.
For much of my life I believed that David was a model for my life. If I have enough faith, I can, like David, defeat the giant. Right? Wrong! I don’t get to play the part of David. Neither do you. That part belongs to Jesus. He is the rescuer! He fights the battle for us.
Remember the story of Lazarus? He was Jesus’ good friend. After being dead for four days, Jesus visited the grave site. Now, I ask you, did Lazarus decide he was going to come back to life? No! He was stone-cold-dead. He didn’t decide anything. But Jesus came to the rescue!
How about Blind Bartimaeus? Did he make the decision to see? Did he eat enough carrots or exercise his eye lids? No! Jesus came to the rescue!
How about me and you? Can we work our way into God’s good graces? I got a five-year perfect-attendance-pin in Sunday School. Did that make me worthy of heaven? Can you write a check big enought to buy your way into heaven? Nope!
“The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23, CSB).
“For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift—not from works, so that no one can boast” (Ephesians 2:8–10, CSB).
“God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8, CSB).
In other words, there is nothing we can do to save ourselves. We need a rescuer! We need Jesus to come to the rescue!
South Georgia Baptist Church
Mike Martin, Pastor