There was a book written a number of years ago which was later adapted into a film entitled The Deer Hunter.  The movie depicts the support and affection that existed among prisoners of war during the Vietnam War.

   One of the prisoners, named Nick, could not free himself emotionally from the horrors of being forced as a prisoner to play Russian roulette.  Even after his release from the prison, Nick remained in Saigon, playing this dangerous game with gamblers and derelicts.  Nick's friend, Michael, was so concerned that he returned to Saigon in an attempt to rescue his troubled friend.  Finding him, Michael tries in vain to shake his friend's psychotic state.  Finally, Michael exhibits his love for his friend by demonstrating his willingness to risk putting a bullet through his own head in playing Russian roulette, if that was what it took to restore Nick's sanity.  

   Many of us may never be selfless enough to risk shooting ourselves for someone else --- and hopefully would never have a situation where such a thing was even imaginable.  However, we have an eternal hope because of the One who was selfless enough to give His own life as a sacrificial atonement for our sins.  Jesus himself, before He was crucified, told those around Him in John 15:13 "Greater love has no one that this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."  Jesus was willing to risk it all in a selfless manner, so we could live with Him eternally. We would do well to never forget that Jesus selflessly took the death that was destined to us upon himself at Calvary.


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