Two Christian sisters in World War II were sent to Ravensbrück prison camp. Their family helped Jews, who were traveling to escape the persecution brought on by Hitler. Their crime was giving them food and a place to stay. Over time, the helpers became the persecuted. “The Hiding Place,” is the name of the book and the movie that tells the story of the Betsy and Corrie ten Boom, and the ordeal that they faced during such a difficult time. They were persecuted because the did what was good and right.
What happened to them was wrong, the Germans knew it was wrong, and they did it still. They were imprisoned, starved and became forced labor; and faced no telling what from the prison guards day in day out. Can you even imagine the kind of climate that led family to turn in family, or life long friends to turn in friends, in order that they might escape what these women went through? Brother David Robinson wrote in this past week’s lesson, “How can we imagine that we can endure persecution if we cannot even endure prosperity?” What I’m getting at, loved ones, is that these dear souls suffered for doing what was right, and we can’t even stomach the idea of suffering at all, for any reason.
Could God allow such a thing? Dear ones, do you have a theology that only allows for good things to come your way? I hope that isn’t so. Think about those precious souls, who come to faith in Christ; and the people who are closest in their lives say, “Today, you died to me; I never want to see your face again.” God is not only faithful to those in such situations, Scripture tells us that the eyes of God are upon them. Chuck Swindoll once said in a sermon, “You talk about a moment to talk about Christ; it’s when you have suffered unjustly, and you’re doing it with patience, now’s your moment to tell them how it happened. They will listen. You have earned the right to be heard. Because they know that there is a difference in how you’re responding to it from how they would.”
Betsy told Corrie that she had a dream and they would both be released by the new year, and she added that when they got out, "We will tell everyone that there is no pit that is so deep, that God is not deeper still: and they will believe us, because we have been there." That sweet soul died before the end of that year, and her freedom came with an abundant entrance into glory. Corrie ten Boom was released through a clerical error, which saved her from certain death. At the end of the movie "The Hiding Place," you see an aged Corrie ten Boom, and she looks right into the camera and says that she had traveled the world, ". . .and I have told everyone who would listen, that there is no pit so deep, that God is not deeper still." You see loved ones, she is a hero of the faith; because the heart of a lion, was beating in the body of a lamb. Bless you all.
Listen to Corrie ten Boom's testimony. Click on the Resource tab.