There was a foolish man who lived a lavish lifestyle and squandered all he had. When he died, the only inheritance he left his five children was heavy debt. Unable to pay off the debt their father had accumulated, the children were forced to live and work on the streets. One day, a wealthy business man happened to pass by. Seeing them shivering in the cold, his heart moved in him. He took them to his home, served them hearty meals, and sold one of his companies to pay off all of their debt. Then he offered all five children jobs in his remaining business, instructing them to follow all his rules. Even though they had made many mistakes, three of the children worked diligently, learned from their mistakes, and used their hard-earned money wisely, so he promoted them to be his own assistants. The other two, on the other hand, refused to go by the rules and spent their money on whatever they wanted. They never got promoted.

What does this parable of mine teach us? It, albeit not perfectly, helps us better understand humankind's plight and the solution Jehovah God has offered all of us to rescue us from our situation.

Let's look at the allegory:

Adam, our very first ancestor (the foolish man), made a choice that caused him all that he had and all that he could have. When he had children, all of his offspring, including us (the five children), inherited the consequence of his bad decision. Adam's foolish decision was to deliberately rebel against Jehovah, his Creator, even though he knew that the penalty of such rebellion was death. After he rebelled, his offspring followed in his footsteps. Thus, through him, sin (rebellion against God) entered the human race, and death entered as well, because death is the penalty of sin (inheritance).

Since every child of Adam has inherited sin and death from him, each one is destined to die (debt). We have, in a sense, been living on the streets, trying to find meaning in our lives. But what purpose could there possibly be if we are going to die someday anyway? So regardless of what great accomplishments we have ever accomplished, we will all die, and our accomplishments will die with us. Thus, all is vanity, a chasing after wind (Ecclesiastes 1:14).

Think about it: no matter how great a life we live or how miserable our lives are, all will end someday. No one can escape death. Death is the fate of all humans. While we eat and drink and have a great time, our good times will all pass, not even to be memories. True, some of our legacies will live on, but what meaning does that serve us if we are not here to know about it? What an utterly empty life!

A purposeless existence seems to be the destiny for the entire humankind. “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die” seems to be the eternal song of life that all are destined to sing (1 Corinthians 15:32, WEB.)

But good news: we can choose to stop singing that sad tune today!

Seeing our plight, Jehovah (the wealthy business man in our parable) rescued us, not because we did anything to deserve it, but it was out of His love and grace toward us. He let His only Son, Jesus, die for us. Through his substitutionary death, Jesus died in the place for all humans. He took up our own penalty for sin, which is death, so that every person has an opportunity to live forever, as it was meant to be at the beginning of God's creation of humans.

All of our debt has been paid, and we are offered a position in God's family (the business man's business), even though we did not do anything to earn it. Those who appreciate God's gift of rescue (the three diligent children) will be promoted to live an eternal life. Those who refuse to appreciate what God has done for them (the two children) will not get promoted.

Jehovah fairly gives everyone what they want. Those who expect to die forever will receive what they ask for: eternal death. Those who love Jehovah and His Son and want to be with them will also get what they want: an eternal life with Jehovah and Jesus in God's Kingdom after a future resurrection of all those who have died. The choice is up to each and every person. No one will get what they did not ask for. God will not make the decision for us. There is no force on God's part; He freely lets us choose.

What will you choose? Will you choose to continue singing the tune "Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die," or will you choose to be promoted to be God's own eternal child? This is the most important decision you will ever make. Your eternal future depends entirely on this one decision. Decide wisely. Make this your 2011 New Year's resolution--to receive eternal life! You won't find a better gift!

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Shirley Cheng (b. 1983), a blind and physically disabled award-winning author with twenty-seven book awards, proclaimer of Jehovah God's good news of salvation through Jesus Christ, Summa Cum Laude (Highest Honor) graduate with Doctor of Divinity, motivational speaker, self-empowerment expert, poet; author of nine books (including "Do You Love Jehovah?"), contributor to twenty-two, and an editor of one; and a parental rights advocate, has had severe juvenile rheumatoid arthritis since infancy. Owing to years of hospitalization, she received no education until age eleven. Back then, she knew only her ABCs and very simple English; other than that, her book knowledge was non-existent. However, after only about 180 days of special education in elementary school, she mastered grade level and entered a regular sixth grade class in middle school. Unfortunately, Shirley lost her eyesight at the age of seventeen. After a successful eye surgery, she hopes to earn multiple science doctorates from Harvard University.

Do you have questions about the Bible? Something you don't understand? Do you need a bit of guidance in developing a relationship with Jehovah? Then Shirley would like to help you! Please contact her via her site at and she would be more than glad to do her best to answer your questions! Never hesitate to ask questions, for no question about the Bible is ever too small or stupid.