Keith Wishum reports: Tuesday, October 26, 1999 was no day at the beach for 28 year-old Kenny Beach of Brunswick, Georgia. Beach, whose house overlooks a marsh, went out in a small boat to search for missing parts of his floating dock. When he stepped from the boat to retrieve an errant piece, he sank immediately up to his waist in the muck.
Beach quickly discovered that struggling to free himself only made matters worse as he was sucked deeper into the soft mud. Soon, he was buried up to his chest. The tide was coming in.
Deciding to be still and call for help, Beach began to shout. He continued to sink deeper. The tide continued to rise. The sun disappeared and darkness settled, leaving Beach cold, alone, and afraid as the cold dark water rose, first to his neck, then to his face. Continuing to call for help, Beach panicked, knowing that he would soon drown.
As the murky water finally closed over Beach’s nose, fire department rescuers James Williams and Craig Renshaw heard a gurgle. Swinging their rowboat toward the sound, they spotted Beach and quickly began to pull him from the muck which would have claimed his life.
Kenny Beach’s plight while stuck in the mire resembles our condition in our sins… we are separated from God (Isaiah 59:1-2) and destined for death (Romans 6:23). We cannot free ourselves from the mire of sin (Ephesians 2:8-9). We are totally dependent upon someone else to come to our rescue.
God, because of His great love for us, sent His Son Jesus to our rescue (Romans 5:8). He came to this world as a Man to identify with us and to die for us – the perfect Sacrifice to pay the debt for our sins (2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 2:24).
Jesus will lift from the mire of sin those who accept His offer of salvation and eternal life by placing their faith and trust in Him (Acts 16:30-31), turning from sin in repentance (Acts 17:30-31), confessing Him before men (Romans 10:9-10), and being baptized (immersed) into Christ for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38). Then those who continue to cling to Him through their trusting obedience will continually be cleansed by His blood (1 John 1:7).
In a song entitled “Deeper and Deeper,” Oswald J. Smith ponders the salvation that Christ offers:
Into the heart of Jesus
Deeper and deeper I go,
Seeking to know the reason
Why He should love me so,
Why He should stoop to lift me
Up from the miry clay,
Saving my soul, making me whole,
Though I had wandered away.
The reason that God desires to lift us up from the miry clay is because He loves us.
The reason why we should accept His offer on His terms is because Jesus is our only Hope!
David A. Sargent