One day in March, I got a phone call from one of our grandsons. He told me that he was in deep trouble, and that he had a bad cold and intestinal problems. He asked me not to tell anybody, but he was being held by the police. A friend of his was going to get some medication for him and had borrowed his brother’s car, which turned out to be stolen, with fake license plates and drugs in the trunk. As this friend was on a mission to help the caller, he was also detained as being involved, and he begged me to help him. If I could just put up a bond, he would be allowed to go home. He said that I could talk to the policeman if I wanted to. I decided not to, and I hung up.
The next day, there were reports on the radio that these kinds of scams are very prevalent these days, and older people are usually the victims. Some fall for it; others don’t.
There were scammers and thieves in Jesus’ day, too. In His preaching, Jesus liked to use examples that people could relate to, and He knew that talking about sheep and shepherds would be easy for most to understand. There were a lot of sheep in Israel, and they were quite often put in large pens with stone walls and an opening to let the sheep in and out. In some cases, there was a door with a doorkeeper who guarded all the sheep. In the morning, the shepherds would go to the pen to get their sheep.
“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.” (John 10:1-3 NKJV)
There are so many strange things going on in the world these days, so many thieves and robbers. Some are very obvious; they break and enter stores or houses and steal items of value. Others try to scam unsuspecting folks out of money by lying and cheating. Jesus warns us to avoid these people and not to listen to them, but always to listen to Him.
“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10 NKJV)
The scammers sound so convincing, and there are many other voices which are so enticing, voices which try to lead people astray. But we should pray for discernment and listen only to Jesus as He talks to us through the words of Scripture.
Prayer: Our Father in heaven, as the words of liars and cheaters try to lead people astray, we pray that all will listen only to Your words of truth. We ask it in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Copyright © 2023, by Joel Jongkind<email@example.com>, first published on the PresbyCan Daily Devotional presbycan.ca
Meaford, Ontario, Canada
Used with the permission of PresbyCan and author.