WHO IS THAT ON THAT TRUCK?
Transportation is big business. Over the years man’s means of moving about have changed greatly. I doubt that any of you ladies rode a camel to your wedding, but Rebekah did. “Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she lighted off the camel.” (Genesis 24:64) Jehu and many others rode into battle in a chariot. “So Jehu rode in a chariot, and went to Jezreel; for Joram lay there. And Ahaziah king of Judah was come down to see Joram.” (2 Kings 9:16) Horses were often used for transportation and for war. “And the Egyptians pursued, and went in after them to the midst of the sea, even all Pharaoh's horses, his chariots, and his horsemen.” (Exodus 14:23) Some traveled by boat or ship. “And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man's life among you, but of the ship.” (Acts 27:22) Jesus even rode a donkey. “Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass.” (Matthew 21:5) Today we have cars, trucks, vans, motor cycles, boats, planes and bicycles. In our work in Guyana, South America we are blessed to have a wonderful little truck. It is a four door Toyota Hilux. It is a 4 wheel drive diesel. It is a very strong and rugged little truck and it has done much work for God. Several people helped us have this truck to do the work in the interior of Guyana; Ed and Sue Bagents gave the major part of the purchase price for this great truck. On this one trip alone it did so much good. I was thinking of all the things that it did and I want to share a few of them with you.
Who is that on that truck? These are workers in God’s kingdom! Each day the truck would deliver around 25 men and women to the work site where the building is being built in Annai Central. Some were skilled carpenters with their tools; others were there to do what they could. Ladies cleaned and chopped to clean the building site using hoes with handles cut out of the woods and machetes to cut with. Two or three of the ladies cooked lunch for the workers. They cooked over an open fire in an outside kitchen. We had some form of rice every day and then at night too. Some hauled water, sand, gravel, brick, dug the foundation, handed lumber or wired together metal that was used in the column and foundation. There was work for every willing worker. Our attitude must be, “I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.” (John 9:4) The brethren at Wowetta and Bini Hill have been taught the principle of being a debtor. Someone taught them the gospel and helped them have a building so now they are working to help someone else. “I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.” (Romans 1:14) You and I are also debtors to others so let us do our work; let us evangelize and build. Who is that on that truck? Those are workers for God!
Who is that on that truck? These are precious children who were walking to school. Many of the children in the Annai region literally walk for miles to school; some walk as much as 6 or seven miles each way daily. It was hard for me to pass them by as I went to get our workers so I would stop and they would hop on the truck with big smiles on their faces. One day there were 16 boys and girls on the truck and they were dropped off right in front of their school. Children are a great blessing from God. Eve understood that children are a blessing from God. “And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD.” (Genesis 4:1) It is very likely that Eve meant to acknowledge that it was through God's special blessing that she was able to conceive and bring forth a son. She understood that through her children mankind should be continued on the earth. If you have children love them, be a parent to them and never stop praying for them and trying to get them to heaven. My attention is always directed to how precious and valuable children are each time I read Mark 10. “And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.” (Mark 10:13-16) Jesus did not baptize little children. Instead He, “Took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.” Who is that on that truck? These are precious, beautiful little children who are loved by God and should be loved and trained by their parents to go to heaven.
Who is that on that truck? This is a father and mother, a few children and the dead son of these parents. On our last day in Annai as I drove workers where they needed to be I was dropping a brother by where the tractor was coming to load some gravel. Along the way we saw a man he knew, about to begin a long and rough bicycle ride. The man told brother Sigman Moses that his son was just found dead in a well and he was going to get his wife (the boy’s mother.) I told Brother Moses we would take him and bring her back. It was about a thirty minute trip though some rugged trails in the truck. As we returned, sadness filled the truck as the parents, three other children, and brother Sigman and I, rode to the location where the boy was in the well. Many wells in that area are uncovered and the way this boy died was so sad! He had been missing since Sunday night and this was Tuesday morning when he was found in the well. His parents had been diligently searching for him. He had gone to party, drink alcohol and possibly do other drugs with his friend. He mother said repeatedly, “I begged him not to go! I begged him not to go!” The boy was 20 years old and was drunk and fell into the well and died! “The living know that they shall die,” but you do not have to die this way. “For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.” (Ecclesiastes 9:5) When we reached the well, the body of the young man had been removed and was wrapped in a sheet lying near the well. How sad it was to unwrap this young man for his parents to view his lifeless body! I wish every person who has a thought of drinking alcohol or using some other drug could have been a part of this heartbreaking experience. The dead are buried quickly in that area because of the heat and the fact that the body is not embalmed. There was a discussion as to where the boy would be buried. Then there was talk of how to get him there. Of course, I knew the answer for that, the truck. The dead boy was put on the back of the truck and with his father and uncle ridding on the back with him and his mother, some children and another lady up front, we drove to the burial ground where a box would be made for him, a grave dug and he would be buried that afternoon. I felt a profound sadness as this boy’s body was removed from the back of the truck and placed on some boards lying on the ground under a mango tree to await immediate burial. I remember the words of Proverbs 20:1, “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.” Let us remember these words of inspiration, “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit.” (Ephesians 5:18) Who is that on that truck? This is a father and mother, a few children and the dead son of these parents.
Who is that on this truck? This is Mr. Elmo Joseph and a few other people on their way to some water for baptism. Mr. Joseph is an 82 year old man who had been attending the services of the church with a neighbor who was baptized several months ago. He had attended for 4 weeks in a row. After some study about atonement, repentance, the church and God’s plan of salvation we asked Mr. Joseph if he was ready for baptism. With a smile he said he was “Ready and willing!” His neighbor, a brother around seventy years old, Elmo’s daughter-in-law, a small grandson, Kennard Moses, preacher at Annai Church of Christ and me rode to some water for the baptism. Baptism is the moment at which a believer who has repented enters into Christ. “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?” (Romans 6:3) There must be an understanding of the purpose of baptism, if baptism is to be valid. On the day of Pentecost, Peter declared that baptism is “for the remission of sins.” (Acts 2:38) Elmo Joseph was baptized for remission of sins. After Kennard Moses baptized Mr. Joseph and raised him from the water he said, “You are now a member of the family of God. You are my brother in Christ. Your sins have been washed away. You are now a Christian.” So if you need baptism, “Why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.” (Acts 22:16) Who is that on this truck? This is Mr. Elmo Joseph and a few other people on their way to some water for baptism.
Do you have a living faith that Jesus Christ is the Son of God? If so it is time to become a Christian now! To become a Christian you must hear the gospel (Romans 10:17), believe in Jesus (John 8:24), repent of sins (Acts 17:30), confess Christ as Lord (Acts 8:37), and be baptized to be saved. (1 Peter 3:21) After baptism follow Jesus in faithfulness as He leads you home to heaven. (Revelation 2:10)
By Charles Box, Walnut Street Church of Christ, P.O. Box 551,
Greenville, Alabama 36037 USA