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Dr Chafer and the Flagman

Dr. Lewis Sperry Chafer, evangelist and founder of Dallas Theological Seminary, told a simple story from his life. It seems that one day Dr. Chafer was walking along the street when he encountered a flagman sitting in a little house at a railroad crossing. He noticed that the man was reading a large family Bible. Though a sign on the door said, “No Admittance,” Dr. Chafer went boldly through the door to greet the man. In reply to a question from Dr. Chafer, the man said that he read the Bible a lot. So Chafer asked a second question—one most people are too timid to ask these days—“Are you saved?”

The answer of the flagman carries the sentiments of many: “I never could be good enough to be saved.”

Dr. Chafer countered, “Friend, if God would make an exception of your case, and give you salvation outright as a gift, would you receive it?”

“Mister,” the flagman replied, “I don’t know what brand of fool you think I am that I wouldn’t take a gift like that!”

Chafer asked the flagman to read John 10:28. It took the man awhile to find the passage, but then he read, “I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish...” Then Chafer directed him to Romans 6:23, where he read, “the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

The flagman was amazed. He said to Dr. Chafer, “Stranger, I don’t know who you are, but you’ve done more for me today than any other man.”

Chafer crisply replied, “What have I done for you? I’ve got you in a trap. You told me that if it was a gift, you’d accept it. Now, what are you going to do about that?”

“I will accept it right now,” the flagman responded. And he did. Dr. Chafer prayed with him and left.

That is the simplicity of the gospel. The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

Today in the Word, May, 1990

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