The other day I was standing near the jewelry counter of a local store
and noticed a mother and her two children, a little girl about nine and
a boy who appeared to be about eleven or twelve. They were apparently
choosing a gift for someone. I don't know what the mother was looking
at but the little girl was having a good time twirling the
top-of-the-counter earring display showcases. She seemed to not have any
interest in the jewelry inside. The boy,however,
was also twirling the cases but he was looking at the contents inside.
The mother had made her selection and was waiting for the clerk to
complete the transaction. I heard the boy say,
"Is it real or look-alike?"
The mother answered, "it's real. See, the sign says 14kt. gold."
The clerk handed the woman the package and they left.
I have not been able to put the boy's question out of my mind. IS IT REAL OR LOOK-ALIKE?
There are so many things that are copies of the real thing, whether it
be fashions in clothing, jewelry, perfumes, household items, art or
whatever. Some are really excellent copies and some are very cheap
imitations. Sometimes only an expert can distinguish the difference.
Sometimes it is obvious to even the most untrained eye. There is nothing
owning a copy of an item if you know it IS a copy and you are not being
deceived. And if you are not trying to deceive someone else.
For example, I might love a painting by a
famous artist but the price of the original is far beyond my financial
status. But I can purchase a nice but much less expensive print of the
painting and find great pleasure and enjoyment
from it. Now if a dealer sold me a print of a painting and assured me
it was an original and
I bought it, then I was deceived into thinking I was buying the real
Gold is something that has always been and probably always will be
admired and a pleasure to possess. We find many degrees of purity
of the beautiful, enduring metal and of course the price goes up as the
quality goes up. Then, of course here are many versions of copies of
gold. When I was a young girl I saved my nickels and dimes and bought
the prettiest ring. It was "gold" with a "ruby" surrounded by
"diamonds". I wore it proudly everywhere I went, but one day I noticed
a strange greenish mark around my finger. Oh no! My pretty $1.00 ring
was discoloring my finger..the"gold" was wearing off. Unwilling to give
up my ring, I cleaned it up real good and polished it with clear nail
polish. It looked like real gold again, and when
the nail polish wore off, I just painted it again. I wore that ring for
the longest time , but finally the polish couldn't hide the inferior
metal any longer and I had to stop wearing my ring.
Today you can find some really good copies of gold. There is the cheap,
cheap metal that on the surface LOOKS LIKE the real thing but it won't
stay pretty, but will turn, or change color, or flake off, etc. Then
moving up is gold plated,
a base metal dipped in a very thin layer of gold. then there is gold
filled, nicer and quite acceptable in some cases. Now we get into real
gold, and without getting into technicalities,
the quality of gold increases as the amount of impurities is burned away. We find 10kt,14 kt. 22 kt and so on..until there is only PURE gold;
all the dross is burned away and only the beautiful treasured, enduring
metal remains. Sometimes only a qualified jeweler can tell the
The same is true with gems ; diamonds, emeralds, rubies, etc. The
trained and qualified expert can tell the difference because he has
studied and become very familiar with the genuine precious metal or gem
and when a copy is placed before him next to the real thing it is
So it is with salvation. Man tries to satisfy the
inner desire for a pure heart and peace with substitutes....humanitarian
service, gifts of money, volunteer work, good moral values,possessions,
success and on and on. But when those things, good though they might
be, are placed beside Jesus
they are revealed in their shoddiness and shabbiness, their
imperfection, their shallowness , their weakness
Look now at THE REAL THING. Look at the sinless, pure, spotless
Savior, the Lamb of God, Son of God. There is no spot or stain to mar
His beauty . He shines as the Bright and Morning Star. He reveals His
gentle, loving, compassionate nature, Burden Bearer and Comforter.
There is no weak baseness in His Being...He is the Strong Deliverer,
Captain of the hosts of Heaven, The King of Kings and Lord of Lords. One
day He will be the final Judge.
The young boy asked, "Is it real or look alike?"
I ask you, " Are you depending on Jesus Who said I AM the way, the TRUTH
and the Life? Or, are you depending on your own version of a look alike
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