Before Abdul Qadir was two years old, his parents died. They left their son much property and many houses as an inheritance. His father’s brother was appointed to be guardian of the boy and of his inheritance.
Usually, such an arrangement would be good. But Abdul Qadir’s uncle was an evil man and not worthy of trust. He sent the little boy far away to another relative who did not want to look after him. Then the uncle told people that Abdul Qadir was dead, sold the property and used the money for his selfish desires.
As the boy grew older, he returned to visit his uncle who told him that he was an orphan, that he was poor, homeless and dependent upon the charity of others. Therefore, he was forced to work hard in the fields for a living, barely able to read or write.
When Abdul Qadir was twenty-two years old, he received a letter addressed to him. He was alone in the house when it came. Excited and fearful, he laid the letter aside, unopened. The next day, when he was alone in the field, he opened the letter reading with great difficulty:
“To the honourable Abdul Qadir, son of-Mubarak: peace be unto you. I, the writer of this letter, am Abdul Aziz, the brother of your mother. Some years ago I heard what happened to you. I rejoice that you are still alive, for you are flesh of my flesh and blood of my blood. My heart goes out to you.”
“Dear Abdul Qadir, you are among the enemies who have robbed you of the inheritance which your father left you. When I was informed of this sad state of affairs, I determined to buy back your inheritance in order that it may be yours once more. Now, after years of great toil and suffering, I have paid the high price and possess the deed to this vast property. The deed is in the hands of the Qazi (a judge), whose name and address I am enclosing. The deed needs only your signature so that the property will become yours. Now take this letter to the Qazi and identify yourself. Then, when we meet on a future day, we will rejoice together.”
Abdul Qadir did not know what to believe. Was he poor or rich? Was he, who worked like a slave, really a master? Was he really an heir to riches? He was so excited he read the letter many times. Finally, he placed it under a stone to hide it from his master. However, he was so full of joy that he told him about the letter the next morning.
His master was very angry. “What a foolish lad you are!” he said. “Do you think you are the only Abdul Qadir in this world? This letter was meant for another Abdul Qadir, not for you.”
Abdul Qadir replied: “You may be right. However, it is my name written on the letter. I shall travel to the Qazi to find out about the matter. This is the only way to know if the heir named in the letter is really I.”
The master tried hard but was unable to persuade Abdul Qadir show him the letter. Even the master’s threats did not make him give it up. Before sunset Abdul Qadir secretly returned to the place where the letter was hidden. Again and again he read it.
That night, after the evening meal, several of the village elders who had dined with the master spoke to Abdul Qadir. “Young man,” they said, “listen to us and accept our wisdom. Do not believe the letter that came to you. Someone is deceiving you and playing a trick on you. The letter is a fraud and the signature forged. Bring it to us and we will prove that it is false.” Again, he refused. The elders were very angry.
It came to pass that the words of the elders raised doubt in the heart of Abdul Qadir. Could it be they spoke the truth about the letter! He decided to gain more information about Abdul Aziz when he went to the market. The next morning he found a man at the marketplace who knew the town from where the letter came. This man had even visited there during the past year. He said: “In that town there lives a man whose name is Abdul Aziz. Everyone in town speaks of his goodness and fine character. They say that he was a very wealthy man. Yet, for the past few years he has been living as if he were poor, working very hard and saving his money for a strange and wonderful purpose.”
Abdul Qadir understood! His heart beat with hope and joy. This was a joy greater than anything he had ever experienced in his whole life. He knew the purpose of Abdul Aziz’s work of love. It was for him, for Abdul Qadir! Again, he informed his master that he intended to journey to see the Qazi. The master had Abdul Qadir arrested and put in prison. But God was with him. During the night Abdul Qadir worked hard to dig a hole under the wall and he escaped. By the light of the moon he found his letter and headed straight to the town of Abdul Aziz. He hid by day and journeyed by night until he was far away from his master. After several weeks, he arrived in town and found the home of the Qazi. He had read the letter many times during his journey. It gave him hope and courage.
When the Qazi answered the knock on his door, he saw a young man who hardly looked like the heir of a great estate! Abdul Qadir had sold all he possessed to buy food during the journey. His clothing had become rags and his feet were bare. Still, the Qazi was pleased when Abdul Qadir identified himself and showed him the letter. “You have done well,” he said. “Abdul Aziz did not wish to force you to come. He wished to see if you would trust his promise and have courage to make the journey. Now that you have come, we shall complete the deed in the presence of witnesses. Then you will possess what is your own.”
Can you imagine how Abdul Qadir felt as he lay down to sleep that night? Now he was certain it was not a dream. Indeed he really was the owner of a large properly and many houses! He promised to do all in his power to take proper care of his new possessions.
There is little need to tell you of the happiness Abdul Qadir experienced from this time forward and how he marvelled at the beauty of all he possessed. Most of all, however, he had a great desire to meet Abdul Aziz. For he could never forget that it was he who had redeemed his property and given it to him. Truly, he considered the redeemer more precious than the redeemed property!
Friend, there is a letter that has come from a distant place for you also. This letter is the New Testament, sent from heaven. It tells you about an inheritance which God has prepared for you. This inheritance will not perish as do earthly riches, which pass away, but is pure, perfect and eternal. Among the treasures of the eternal inheritance are forgiveness of your sins, salvation, a clean heart, new life and peace with God. Do you know that God has already willed this heavenly inheritance to you and all mankind?
This letter also tells you how God has prepared this great inheritance for you. It tells you how God sent Jesus the Messiah to live and suffer for you. For you the Messiah gave up the riches and splendour of His dwelling with God in heaven and came into this world as a real human being like you. He gave His life for you, and His resurrection from the dead is God’s guarantee that His inheritance is truly yours.
But why did the Messiah do this for you? It is because, as this letter also states, you have an enemy, Satan. He has tried and will always try to rob you of your inheritance. He wants to keep you in darkness and ignorance about this inheritance. Because God loves you, the Messiah has suffered to redeem your inheritance and to free you from the strong hold of Satan.
Friend, do you have faith in this promise of God? Do you have the courage to leave your old life of sin and slavery to Satan? Are you prepared to receive the great gift which God has for you?
No doubt some people will discourage you. They will tell you to remain in the kind of life that you have always lived. Others will tell you that the letter, the New Testament, is meant for someone else, not for you. Still others will say that the letter is not genuine, that its message is false, and that its promises are deceptive.
Yet friend, this letter is addressed to you, as it is to all people. Read it carefully and with an open heart. You will see its truth and discover the value of this eternal inheritance. Your heart, like that of Abdul Oadir, will rejoice in your new possession. You will be rich in pardon, in peace and in the new life the Messiah has won for you. And you will gladly await the time to meet the Messiah. You will want to thank Him and to rejoice with Him when He returns again from heaven to claim His people.
God is great! Praise God who does all things well!
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