How many trees does it take to hide a forest?

SAUL, talk to me.   How's that son of yours?"
"I'm not speaking to him!   It's over!   I have no son!"
"What do you mean?   He's your son.   You can't throw him away!   What happened?"
     "He talks too much about Jesus; tells me I should follow Him.   Says He's the Messiah.   Do you believe it?   Huh?   No more sons.   I'm through with sons!   Daughters, that's what I should have had.   My wife, may she rest in peace, should have given me daughters.   But she didn't.   Instead, she cursed me with sons!   Five sons!"
     "Saul, relax!   Have some pastrami."
     "I raised him.   Gave him everything: food, clothes, diapers, lots of diapers, and what does he do?   Tells me I should believe in Jesus.   Shows me Isaiah, Isaiah 53, and says it talks about the Messiah--claims it's Jesus."
     "What do you mean?"
     "What?   Are you deaf?   Look, look for yourself.   Here, he gave me this verse on a piece of paper.   Read it.   Go ahead, put your glasses on -- read it!"
     "‘He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.’   (Isa. 53:3).   Saul, this is Jesus?"
     "That's what that son of mine says.   What does he know?   He doesn't even know the pain he puts his father through.   A daughter, he should have been a daughter!   Daughters don't torment their fathers!"
     "But Saul.   How do [you] know it's not Jesus?   There's no name here.   Just a man rejected by us."
     "That's right!   You see?   It could be anyone.   I reject the notion that it's Jesus.   What does my son know?"
     "Saul!   You just did it!"
     "Huh?   Did what?"
     "You rejected Him.   You rejected Jesus."
     "Of course I did.   Are you deaf?"
     "But this is what the verse says we would do.   Maybe it is Jesus after all."
     "What?   I'm talking to a wall?   Jesus claimed to be Messiah.   Any man who claims that, deserves to be rejected.   And suffer!   He should suffer, too!"
     "You did it again!"
     "Did What?"
     "You're acting like the verse says, ‘He is despised and rejected of men; A MAN OF SORROWS, and ACQUAINTED WITH GRIEF--’"
     "Don't read that no more!   Take your glasses off.   I never want to hear about Jesus again.   I hide my ears from him."
     "SAUL!   SAUL!   It is you!   In this verse!   This is you!   Listen.   ‘Acquainted with grief: and WE HID AS IT WERE OUR FACES FROM HIM; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.’   Don't you see it?!"
     "What?   Are you blind?   You sound like my son, the one I no longer have."
     "But Saul--"
     "No more.   No more about Jesus!   Pass the pastrami and be quiet.   I'm hungry."

[Christian Helps Ministry (USA)] [Christian Home Bible Course]