March Sermon Illustrations

March 10, 2010

Two brothers were once convicted of stealing sheep and, in accordance with the brutal punishment of that day, were branded on the forehead with the letters S T, which stood for "sheep thief." One of the brothers, unable to bear the stigma, tried to bury himself in a foreign land. But men would ask him about the letters on his brow, and what they meant. Thus he wandered from land to land, and at length, full of bitterness, died and was buried in a forgotten grave.

But the other brother, who repented of his misdeed, did not go away from his home. He said to himself: "I can't run away from the fact that I stole sheep, and here I will remain until I win back the respect of my neighbors and myself."

As the years passed by he established a reputation for respectability and integrity. One day a stranger in the town saw the old man with the letters S T branded on his forehead and asked a native what they signified. After thinking for a little time the villager said: "It all happened a great while ago, and I have forgotten the particulars; but I think the letters are an abbreviation of Saint."

Yes, that is it! The wonderful grace of God in the penitent and believing heart is able to change and transform the odious marking and scarring of sin into a badge of honor and beauty.

Subjects: Repentance, Confession

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