God gave His Son 2,000 years ago to die on the cross for you and me.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that
whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:16
Take My Son

A wealthy man and his son loved to collect rare works of art.
They would often sit together and admire the great works of art.

When the Vietnam conflict broke out, the son went
to war.  He was very courageous and died in battle
while rescuing another soldier.  The father was
notified and grieved deeply for his only son.

About a month later, just before Christmas, there was
a knock at the door.  A young man stood at the door with
a large package in his hands.  He said, ‘Sir, you don’t know
me, but I am the soldier for whom your son gave his life.
He saved many lives that day.  He was carrying me to safety
when a bullet struck him in the heart.  He died instantly.

He often talked about you, and your love for art.’
The young man held out a package. ‘I know this isn’t
much.  I’m not really a great artist, but I think
your son would have wanted you to have this.’

The father opened the package.  It was a portrait of his son,
painted by the young man.  He stared in awe at the way the
soldier had captured the personality of his son in the painting.

The father was so drawn to the eyes that his own eyes
welled up with tears.  He thanked the young man and
offered to pay him for the picture.  ‘Oh, no sir, I could
never repay what your son did for me.  It’s a gift.’

The father hung the portrait over his mantle.  Every time
visitors came to his home he took them to see the portrait
of his son before he showed them any of the other great
works he had collected.  The man died a few months later.

There was to be a great auction of his paintings.  Many influential
people gathered, excited over seeing the great paintings and
having an opportunity to purchase one for their collection.

On the platform sat the painting of the son.  The auctioneer pounded his
gavel.  ‘We will start the bidding with this picture of the son.  Who will
bid for this picture?’  There was silence.  Then a voice in the back of
the room shouted, ‘We want to see the famous paintings.  Skip this one.’
But the auctioneer persisted.  ‘Will somebody bid for this painting?

Who will start the bidding?  $100, $200?’  Then another voice shouted
angrily, ‘We didn’t come to see this painting.  We came to see the
Van Gogh and the Rembrandt.  Get on with the sale!’  But still the
auctioneer continued.  ‘The son!  The son!  Who’ll take the son?’

Finally, a voice came from the very back of the room.  It was the
longtime gardener of the man and his son.  ‘I’ll give $10 for the
painting.’  Being a poor man, it was all he could afford.  ‘We
have $10, who will bid $20?’  ‘Give it to him for $10.  Let’s
see the masters.  ”$10 is the bid, won’t someone bid $20?’

The crowd was becoming angry.  They didn’t want the picture of the son.
They wanted the more worthy investments for their collections.  The
auctioneer pounded the gavel.  ‘Going once, twice, SOLD for $10!’  A man
sitting on the second row shouted, ‘Now let’s get on with the collection!’
The auctioneer laid down his gavel.  ‘I’m sorry, the auction is over.

‘What about the paintings?’  ‘I am sorry.  When I was called to conduct
this auction, I was told of a secret stipulation in the will.  I was not
allowed to reveal that stipulation until this time:  Only the painting
of the son was to be auctioned.  However, whoever bought that
painting would inherit the entire estate, including the paintings.

You see, whoever takes the son gets everything!’
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