There was a certain Professor
of THEOLOGY named Dr. Christianson, a
studious man who taught at a small college in the Western United States.
Dr. Christianson taught the required survey course in Christianity at
this particular institution. Every student was required to take this
course his or her freshman year regardless of his or her major.
Although Dr. Christianson tried
hard to communicate the essence of the
gospel in his class, he found that most of his students looked upon the
course as nothing but required drudgery. Despite his best efforts, most
students refused to take Christianity seriously.
This year, Dr. Christianson had
a special student named Steve. Steve was
only a freshman, but was studying with the intent of going on to seminary
for the ministry. Steve was popular, he was well liked, and he was an
imposing physical specimen. He was now the starting center on the school
football team, and was the best student in the professor's class.
One day, Dr. Christianson asked
Steve to stay after class so he could
talk with him. "How many push-ups can you do?"
Steve said, "I do about
200 every night."
"200? That's pretty good,
Steve," Dr. Christianson said. "Do you think
you could do 300?"
Steve replied, "I don't
know... I've never done 300 at a time."
"Do you think you
could?" again asked Dr. Christianson.
"Well, I can try,"
"Can you do 300 in sets of
10? I have a class project in mind and I need
you to do about 300 push ups in sets of ten for this to work. Can you do
it? I need you to tell me you can do it," said the professor.
Steve said, "Well... I
think I can... yeah, I can do it."
Dr. Christianson said,
"Good! I need you to do this on Friday. Let me
explain what I have in mind."
Friday came and Steve got to
class early and sat in the front of the
When class started, the
professor pulled out a big box of donuts. Now
these weren't the normal kinds of donuts they were the extra fancy BIG
kind, with cream centers and frosting swirls. Everyone was pretty excited
it was Friday, the last class of the day, and they were going to get an
early start on the weekend with a party in Dr. Christianson's class.
Dr. Christianson went to the
first girl in the first row and asked,
"Cynthia, do you want to have one of these donuts?"
Cynthia said, "Yes."
Dr. Christianson then turned to
Steve and asked, "Steve, would you do ten
push-ups so that Cynthia can have a donut?"
Steve said, "Sure,"
and jumped down from his desk to do a quick ten. Then
Steve again sat in his desk. Dr. Christianson put a donut on Cynthia's
Dr. Christianson then went to
Joe, the next person, and asked, "Joe, do
you want a donut?"
Joe said, "Yes." Dr.
Christianson asked, "Steve would you do ten push-ups
so Joe can have a donut?" Steve did ten push-ups, Joe got a donut.
And so it went, down the first
aisle, Steve did ten pushups for every
person before they got their donut.
And down the second aisle, till
Dr. Christianson came to Scott. Scott was
on the basketball team, and in as good of a condition as Steve. He was
very popular and never lacking for female companionship. When the
professor asked, "Scott do you want a donut?" Scott's reply was,
can I do my own pushups?"
Dr. Christianson said,
"No, Steve has to do them."
Then Scott said, "Well, I
don't want one then."
Dr. Christianson shrugged and
then turned to Steve and asked, "Steve,
would you do ten pushups so Scott can have a donut he doesn't want?"
With perfect obedience Steve
started to do ten pushups. Scott said, "HEY!
I said I didn't want one!"
Dr. Christianson said,
"Look, this is my classroom, my class, my desks,
and these are my donuts. Just leave it on the desk if you don't want it."
And he put a donut on Scott's desk.
Now by this time, Steve had
begun to slow down a little. He just stayed
on the floor between sets because it took too much effort to be getting
up and down. You could start to see a little perspiration coming out
around his brow.
Dr. Christianson started down
the third row. Now the students were
beginning to get a little angry.
Dr. Christianson asked Jenny,
"Jenny, do you want a donut?"
Sternly, Jenny said,
Then Dr. Christianson asked
Steve, "Steve, would you do ten more pushups
so Jenny can have a donut that she doesn't want?" Steve did ten,
got a donut.
By now, a growing sense of
uneasiness filled the room. The students were
beginning to say "No" and there were all these uneaten donuts on the
desks. Steve also had to really put forth a lot of extra effort to get
these pushups done for each donut. There began to be a small pool of
sweat on the floor beneath his face, his arms and brow were beginning to
get red because of the physical effort involved.
Dr. Christianson asked Robert,
who was the most vocal unbeliever in the
class, to watch Steve do each push up to make sure he did the full ten
pushups in a set because he couldn't bear to watch all of Steve's work
for all of those uneaten donuts. He sent Robert over to where Steve was
so Robert could count the set and watch Steve closely. Dr. Christianson
started down the fourth row.
During his class, however, some
students from other classes had wandered
in and sat down on the steps along the radiators that ran down the sides
of the room. When the professor realized this, he did a quick count and
saw that now there were 34 students in the room. He started to worry if
Steve would be able to make it.
Dr. Christianson went on to the
next person and the next and the next.
Near the end of that row, Steve was really having a rough time. He was
taking a lot more time to complete each set.
Steve asked Dr. Christianson,
"Do I have to make my nose touch on each
Dr. Christianson thought for a
moment, "Well, they're your pushups.. You
are in charge now. You can do them any way that you want." And Dr.
Christianson went on.
A few moments later, Jason, a
recent transfer student, came to the room
and was about to come in when all the students yelled in one voice, "NO!
Don't come in! Stay out!"
Jason didn't know what was
going on. Steve picked up his head and said,
"No, let him come."
Professor Christianson said,
"You realize that if Jason comes in you will
have to do ten pushups for him?"
Steve said, "Yes, let him
come in. Give him a donut."
Dr. Christianson said,
"Okay, Steve, I'll let you get Jason's out of the
way right now. Jason, do you want a donut?"
Jason, new to the room hardly
knew what was going on. "Yes," he said,
"give me a donut."
"Steve, will you do ten
pushups so that Jason can have a donut?" Steve
did ten pushups very slowly and with great effort. Jason, bewildered, was
handed a donut and sat down.
Dr. Christianson finished the
fourth row, then started on those visitors
seated by the heaters. Steve's arms were now shaking with each pushup in
a struggle to lift himself against the force of gravity. Sweat was
profusely dropping off of his face and, by this time, there was no sound
except his heavy breathing, there was not a dry eye in the room.
The very last two students in
the room were two young women, both
cheerleaders, and very popular. Dr. Christianson went to Linda, the
second to last, and asked, "Linda, do you want a doughnut?"
Linda said, very sadly,
"No, thank you."
Professor Christianson quietly
asked, "Steve, would you do ten pushups so
that Linda can have a donut she doesn't want?"
Grunting from the effort, Steve
did ten very slow pushups for Linda. Then
Dr. Christianson turned to the last girl, Susan. "Susan, do you want a
Susan, with tears flowing down
her face, began to cry. "Dr. Christianson,
why can't I help him?"
Dr. Christianson, with tears of
his own, said, "No, Steve has to do it
alone, I have given him this task and he is in charge of seeing that
everyone has an opportunity for a donut whether they want it or not. When
I decided to have a party this last day of class, I looked at my grade
book. Steve, here is the only student with a perfect grade. Everyone
else has failed a test, skipped class, or offered me inferior work. Steve
told me that in football practice, when a player messes up he must do
push ups. I told Steve that none of you could come to my party unless he
paid the price by doing your push ups. He and I made a deal for your
sakes. Steve, would you do ten pushups so Susan can have a donut?"
As Steve very slowly finished
his last pushup, with the understanding
that he had accomplished all that was required of him, having done 350
pushups, his arms buckled beneath him and he fell to the floor.
Dr. Christianson turned to the
room and said. "And so it was, that our
Savior, Jesus Christ, on the cross, plead to the Father, Into thy hands I
commend my spirit.' With the understanding that He had done everything
that was required of Him, he yielded up His life.. And like some of those
in this room, many of us leave the gift on the desk, uneaten."
Two students helped Steve up
off the floor and to a seat, physically
exhausted, but wearing a thin smile. "Well done, good and faithful
servant" said the professor, adding "Not all sermons are preached in
Turning to his class the
professor said, "My wish is that you might
understand and fully comprehend all the riches of grace and mercy that
have been given to you through the sacrifice of our Lord and Savior Jesus
Christ, who spared not the only Begotten Son, but gave Him up for us all
for the whole Church, now and forever.
Greater love hath no one than
this, that he lay down his life for his
friends John 15:13
submitted by Jenny W.
Jenny for sharing this with us!!!