Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | July 28, 2015

An Ounce and a Pound

Fire Fighting Advice with a Broad Application!

Benjamin Franklin was a remarkable man in many respects; and although well known as a founding father of the United States of America, he also excelled in a variety of enterprises.

In 1736 Franklin, who at that time was the publisher of the colonies most popular newspaper, the Pennsylvania Gazette, organized Philadelphia’s first fire brigade and during this early effort created the slogan for fire fighters, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” As with many of Franklin’s slogans this one has developed a life of its own.

While this is excellent advice it is all too easily ignored and far too often we find ourselves looking for the pound of cure. The problem we find though is the pound of cure can sometimes multiply into huge weights that defy a simple solution.

As an online missionary for Global Media Outreach I get letters from all over the world where Christians have gotten themselves into serious problems because they decided to live life their way and not God’s way.

The Bible, God’s Ounce of Prevention

I believe all of us, as Christians, will acknowledge that God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, and loves His children with an unconditional love. When one who knows everything, past, present, and future advises us on how best to live our lives common sense dictates we carefully heed that advice. This is what God does for us in the Bible but we do not pay it the respect it deserves.

I rarely get letters asking what is the Biblical advice on a key life decision yet to be made but I get an uncounted number asking for help in resolving problems created by bad, unbiblical life decisions.

I must admit reading those letters does make me feel sad; how is it that we seem to always look for the world’s answers to our problems before we seek God’s answer. I can’t begin to imagine how God must feel; watching generation after generation of His children deliberately ignoring the perfect advice He offers to them in His word, the Bible.

Experience is the Best Teacher

Over the 82 years I have lived I too have made my share of mistakes and with the 20/20 vision of hindsight have discovered that truly God’s way is the best way. The mistakes I made were generally deliberate decisions to do things my way and not God’s way; I cannot claim ignorance of what God had advised in those situations, I knew but decided to live life my way.

These mistakes were sin on my part because they were decisions based on sight and not on faith. I’m always mindful of the definition of sin given in Romans 14:23b where it is written: “everything that is not of faith is sin.”

The Experience of Others is Generally Ignored

One of the sad facts of the human experience is the almost universal tendency to not learn from the experience of others. Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel was speaking of this when he penned the lines:

“What experience and history teach is this–that people and governments never have learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it.”

Which has been paraphrased to read:

“The only thing we learn from history is that we learn nothing from history.”

This has certainly been the case in the area of Christian life and morality! In spite of the fact we have the written word from the creator of the universe we still think we know better; what incredible arrogance!

The Grace Factor

The many letters of concerns about failure and bad choices I get very often specify concerns over God’s forgiveness of those transgressions.  Fortunately I have good news in that department which is all focused on the work of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross. I often point out the reassurances forcefully presented in Romans 8:1-4 where it is written:

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”

The promise to believers contained in those verses along with the promise contained in 1 John 1:9 provide the spiritual redemption which only God can provide. Unfortunately that may not provide closure as there may be earthly ramifications with which one must deal.

The Pound of Cure

It is possible that our mistakes may set in motion a series of reactions that can involve both society and government. Although we may be forgiven by God, there may yet be a price to pay to society or government which may require one or more pounds to resolve, if resolution is even possible.

This is why God cautions us against certain behavior; it can cause problems which may impact the balance of our lives on earth. God truly loves His children and wants the best for them; as a parent I can definitely relate to that. I too want my children and my grandchildren to make decisions that are good for them.

The Bible was not given to hamper our lives or impede our progress toward the fulfillment of our dreams but to enable us to realize the maximum of which we are capable! God’s way is truly the best way!


  1. Dear David,
    It is true that the problems that the Christians live today is because they decided to live their own ways not God’s way. This coolness in faith made Moslem teachers take advantage of it to impose Islam on others. This is what is happening in Europe. The emptiness that some of the young people suffer from made them easy targets for Moslem teachers. The only way to get out of this is Jesus and His Salvation plan. So, we have no other choice but to lift the name of Jesus and to expand His kingdom on earth.
    Yours in His service
    Hanna Awwad


  2. One more thing to add. Moslem cleric use mosques to brain wash their audience with hatred against the infidels who are the Jews and Christians. When they speak to Moslems, they use the Madina verses, when they speak to Christians, they use the peaceful Meccan verses. As you know the Meccan verses were cancelled by the Medina verse which urge on hatred and terror.
    Hanna Awwad


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