Why Andy Won’t Eat Watermelon

EVERY DAY THAT PASSES, the media brings its drumbeat of bad news—of sad, tragic, heartbreaking, horrifying news. Abused children, genocide, suicide bombings, campus shootings, torture, starvation, and more.

With all this pain, suffering, and violence, isn’t it a reasonable question to ask why God seems to be delaying on the Second Coming of Jesus? If He’s a good God, how can He look on and watch the misery continue and do nothing about it? Why hasn’t He stepped in to end it?

I hear the daily news and often recoil in shock and revulsion. So if that’s my reaction as a sin-damaged human being, how can a perfect God seemingly stand by in silence and apparent disinterest?

I say God had better have a mighty good reason.

I don’t, can’t, and won’t presume to know the mind of God, except as He’s shared some of it with us in His Word. But by considering the Bible’s overall message rather than cherry-picking isolated verses here and there, the Big Picture of the Great Controversy emerges.

And against that backdrop, I’ve personally decided that God does have a mighty good reason for letting the sin experiment play out to its conclusion. And at least one part of that reason has to do with immunity. Which brings me to Andy.

At an after-church, good-weather outdoor potluck, Andy moved down the line of tables groaning under the burden of casseroles and desserts, and near the end were some ripe watermelons. Nearly everyone sliced off a piece—but not Andy.

“You sure you don’t want a slice?” asked Andy’s friend next in line.

“No,” Andy replied. “I don’t eat watermelon.”

“Why ever not?” asked his friend.

Andy then shared a story.

“You see,” he said, “when I was just a kid, I lived next to a farmer who grew watermelons. One moonlit night, I and a couple of my friends decided to sneak through the fence into his watermelon patch and help ourselves to some fresh watermelon.

“We found a good one, but had forgotten to bring a knife to open it. Fortunately, scattered around the patch were some old tree stumps. The moon had slipped behind some clouds, so we couldn’t see very well, but we found a stump and brought the watermelon crashing down on it to split it open.

“That’s when—the stump moved! Just then, the moon emerged from behind the clouds, and we saw the old farmer sitting there, watermelon seeds and juice streaming down his face—and a shotgun in his lap.

“ ‘Hi, boys,’ he said. ‘I see you like watermelon. So please have some more.’ And with that, he pointed his shotgun at us. And he kept it there, making sure we kept right on eating.

“Well, we ate watermelon till we began to look like watermelons. Finally, we staggered out of the patch, looking probably as green as watermelon rinds. And I’ve never eaten watermelon since.”

You see, sin is so terrible that God never wants it to happen again. So through what we might call a form of divine aversion therapy, He has to be sure that human beings, angels, and the onlooking universe become so sick of it that once it’s gone, no one would ever consider even the first step down that path again. God has to be sure that the universe is totally immunized against the possibility, so that sin can never arise the second time.

God may have other reasons for the apparent delay in ending sin, but I rather suspect that this is one of them. And I trust that God knows what He is doing—and that He never does anything too early or too late, but always right on time.

Still and all, I so hope the Second Coming is soon!


5 responses to this post.

  1. Andy,

    Thanks for this post. Like Andy, I don’t eat watermelon. But I don’t eat it because I don’t like the taste of it.

    On another note, I don’t like tooting my own horn, but I have a book coming out this summer on this very subject (the delay in Christ’s second coming – not watermelon) that you may find interesting. It’s called “Waiting at the Altar.”

    You can check out my blog to see when it does come out!

    All right. That’s the end of my plug.

    Have a blessed Sabbath.


  2. Thanks, Shawn. Let me know when your book is off the press, and I’ll give it another plug here.

    By the way, you misspelled one letter in the link behind your name above “blogspots,” rather than “blogspot,” so for those who want to get to your blog, it’s: http://newenglandpastor.blogspot.com.

    Happy Sabbath to you too…and yours.


  3. Posted by Eric on February 18, 2008 at 7:51 pm

    That is an outstanding article. Andy learned about the enormity of sin the hard way, just like everyone else does!

    Well done!

    This story reminds me of the tragedy of Mr. Ratzlaff:




  4. Thanks for your affirming words, Eric.

    I’ve also added the blog in your link to my Newly Discovered Adventist Blogs.


  5. Uh-oh. Thanks for making that correction, Ken! I always seem to struggle with typing my blog address.

    I will let you know when the book comes out – though, with sincere honesty, I hate the idea of promoting myself!

    Keep up the good work!


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