Are You in Tune?

Because former TWR missionary, Dr. Louis Muggleton lived in Europe, I never met him during my early years with TWR but he was what legends were made of.  Dr. Muggleton had a doctorate in wave propagation and was a radio engineer.  He had a unique way of presenting the truth of the gospel, and his passion to make TWR the best it could be was inspiring.  Today, I’d like to share with you some thoughts Dr. Muggleton wrote in 1964:

Do you sometimes set your watch by a radio time signal? You are assured of a reasonably accurate setting that way because, even if you were on the other side of the world from the transmitter, your watch would be no more than about 1/15 part of a second late….But suppose you were to venture much further and set up a station in our neighboring solar system, Proxima Centauri, which appears in our sky as the nearest star. There you are, poised ready to set your station clock by the BBC time signal. Carefully you set it by the first pip. But now it is really later than you think. In fact, it is about 4.2 years late!

Some of the radio waves that emanated from the aerials of our transmitters today will have started their journey into space in the direction say, of the Milky Way, and will continue that journey, traveling at the speed of light for a very long time. Even at that speed it will be 6 ½ hours before they will have passed out of our solar system. It will be about 80,000 years before they pass out of our galaxy. It will be about 2 million years before they reach our neighboring galaxy, Andromeda. For all we know, Andromeda may no longer be there. What we see today is what Andromeda looked like 2 million years ago.

I wonder if one day we shall find that we each radiate electromagnetic waves, due to the electro-chemical activity which occurs in the brain whenever we think, similar in nature to the waves launched by a radio transmitter but of course very much less powerful…If your thought processes launch radio waves into space, then with suitable receiving equipment, your thoughts could be read a mile away. And given a very sensitive receiver out in Proxima Centauri, your thoughts of 4.2 years ago could be picked up one by one and deciphered there today. Come to think of it, it is possible that each of your thought processes, from the beginning of your life until now, is at this moment just reaching some point in our galaxy as a present-tense event. There appears then to be a complete record in space of your every thought since birth…There is no means of overtaking that which has been radiated, no way of erasing or amending it.

We should expect the Bible, God’s revelation to mankind, to say something about an important matter like this…It does in Matthew 12:36 – Every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. Whether by the mechanism I have outlined or by some other, it appears that every detail of our lives has been recorded and will be used when the Creator judges each one of His creatures.

We realize deep down that there are things that we should like to bury forever. But these very things will continue to happen in the consciousness of God…day after day, year after year, century after century as they become present-day events in different parts of His universe. The implications are staggering! We are all guilty and the verdict is already known: The soul that sinneth, it shall die.

But God, rich in mercy for the great love He bore us, brought us to life with Christ – Eph 2:3-5. Though we were dead, we are now alive. How can this be. Did we not affirm that all the technical power of all the world could not wipe out one detail of our past record? Yes, but the Bible proclaims that our Creator and Judge has provided a means of Himself paying the penalty we should have paid and of wiping out the record of the past.

Because in His dying love, Christ purchased for us a free pardon, we need remain no more under the condemnation of which we spoke earlier if we will participate in God’s great rescue operation.

This receiving of God’s Son, then enables the Spirit of God to transform the life thus yielded to Him…Only after God’s Spirit has performed this miracle in you do you come alive spiritually, for it is Spirit that gives birth to spirit. The life thus started is eternal life. It is therefore, not what you do that brings about your rescue; it is what you deliberately let God’s Spirit do in your life.

An illustration from your radio set may help here. Until your receiver has been tuned to a radio station it is, in effect, dead even though it has been switched on. Here we have a picture of the man who is dead spiritually though existing physically. Now tune in to a station. The set comes alive and the “life” thus manifest is the speech or music supplied by the transmitting station. Captivated by the power of the transmitting station, your set does not produce something of its own; rather it reproduces the “life” of the station. True, the quality of the reproduction is affected by the tonal qualities of the set but there is no doubt concerning the source of the “life” portrayed by the set.

Jesus said, I am the real vine, and my Father is the gardener…dwell in me, as I in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself, but only if it remains united with the vine. This is the central requirement for Christian living. Does your radio receiver sometimes drift off tune? It is being very like a human being when it does this for we are so apt to drift a little off tune. And when the set is not quite in tune, have you noticed that it gives a distorted version of the message? So, with us, for when we are slightly off tune with God we give a distorted and misleading image of Him. But more elaborate receivers have a facility called Automatic Frequency Control, and arrangement whereby any detected drift alters the tuning automatically so as to bring it back to the correct frequency. And the Christian who seeks to do only God’s will, will be kept in tune if he obeys the promptings of the Spirit of God.

We all want to be fruitful. The way to do this is to seek, not our will, but Christ’s; to use not our methods, but His; to look for not our glory but the Master’s. Let us open-up the channels and let His power flow through our lives.

We began this booklet by considering the implications of the possible records in space of everyone’s thought processes. Let us conclude it by observing that the believer has the opportunity of recording a lifetime of beautiful living…And now all that is true, all that is noble, all that is just and pure, all that is lovable and gracious, whatever is excellent and admirable, fill all your thoughts with these things. Phil. 4:8. Realizing perhaps as never before that every moment of today has an eternal quality about it (for is it not true that you are “on the air” so to speak all day long?) let us make good use of this moment, of this hour, of this day.

John Summerville
TWR  – Dir. Radio Station Partnerships
jsummerville@twr.org

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