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John McCain Thanks Kissinger for Saving His Honor

Honor Sacrifice Jesus' Humility

Source: “McCain rips protesters during Kissinger hearing, calls them ‘low-life scum’” by Fox News, posted, January 29, 2015

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Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-01-30

Scripture: Philippians 2:6 ; Revelation 5:12

Author: Illustration Exchange


In a tense exchange with protesters at today’s (1/29/150 Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, Sen. John McCain had harsh words for the hecklers who chanted maligning remarks against former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.

Kissinger served as Secretary of State during the Vietnam war years, and worked tirelessly to secure the release of the many American POWs who were held captive in North Vietnam. As the war was winding down, the Vietnamese were looking for an opportunity to show “good faith” by releasing McCain (the son of a high profile US Admiral) ahead of all the other POWs.

In reality, it was nothing more than a propaganda scheme on the part of the Vietnamese. Either way, McCain flatly refused early release, saying that he would take no special favors at the expense of his fellow prisoners. Kissinger equally refused special favor for McCain.

As NEWSMAX reported back in 2013:

McCain had steadfastly refused to be released early, though the north Vietnamese hoped to score points by doing so after learning his father was to be promoted to admiral.”

"After a while, my honor, which in that situation was entirely invested in my relations and the reputation I had with my fellow POWs, became not just my most cherished possession, it was my only possession," McCain said. "I had nothing else left.

"When Henry came to Hanoi to conclude the agreement that would end America’s war in Vietnam, the Vietnamese told him they would send me home with him," McCain said. "He refused the offer. 'Commander McCain will return in the same order as the others,' he told them."

Kissinger knew McCain's early release would be seen as favoritism to his father and a violation of the code of conduct which required POWs be released in the same order in which they were taken, McCain said in his toast.

"By rejecting this last attempt to suborn a dereliction of duty, Henry saved my reputation, my honor, my life, really. And I’ve owed him a debt ever since."

After verbally lashing the protesters at Thursday’s meeting, McCain turned his comments to Secretary Kissinger to once again thank him for guarding his honor and securing his legacy of sacrifice for country and fellow POWs.


McCain was unwilling to lessen his own suffering by placing himself ahead of any other or by leaving any man behind. 

There is great honor is sacrifice. Yet that honor can be quickly depleted when one is not willing to go the distance.

Imagine, if Jesus, in the Garden of Gethsemane had insisted that God remove the cup of suffering from Him and deliver Him from the hands of His captors?

What if, on the cross as the the crowds mocked Him to save Himself, He had gone ahead and called upon “ten thousand angels” to rescue Him?

What if, after crying out Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani He then said, “Ah, the heck with this, I’m outta here,” leaving the thief on the cross behind to fend for himself?

Jesus never considered Himself "too good" for all this suffering. "Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal's death on a cross" (Philippians 2:6-8, NLT).

Because of His great humility and willingness to go the distance we now cry out with the holy angels, "Worthy is the Lamb who was slain—to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and blessing." (Revelation 5:12).

“For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit” (1 Peter 3:18, NASB).

Descending Into Greatness

Humility Jesus' Humility Die To Self

Source: DESCENDING INTO GREATNESS by Bill Hybels and Rob Wilkins, pp. 18-19

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Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-01-06

Scripture: Philippians 2:9

Author: Bill Hybels


You’ve probably never heard someone say, “Hey, congratulations on your demotion!” or, “Hey, I just heard the great news that you lost your fortune!”

People don’t say such things because, in a world where “upward mobility” is the ultimate aspiration, downward mobility is never a good thing!

There is one significant exception to this rule, as Bill Hybels so eloquently points out:

Once His life on earth began, Jesus never stopped descending. Omnipotent, He cried; the owner of all things, He had no home. The King of Kings, He became a bondservant; the source of truth, He was found guilty of blasphemy; the Creator, He was spit on by the creatures; the giver of life, He was crucified naked on a cross—bleeding, gasping for air. With His death, the descent was complete—from the pinnacle of praise in the universe to the ultimate debasement and torture of death on a cross, the innocent victim of human wickedness.

Bill Hybels is the founding and senior pastor of Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington, Ill., and chairman of the board for the Willow Creek Association. The bestselling author of more than twenty books, including Too Busy Not to Pray and Becoming a Contagious Christian, Hybels is known worldwide as an expert in training Christian leaders to transform individuals and their communities through the local church. Hybels received a bachelor's degree in Biblical Studies and an honorary Doctorate of Divinity from Trinity College in Deerfield, Ill. 


He concludes:

With His life and death as a man, Christ violated every tenet of the world’s system. The Highest came to serve the lowest. The Creator and Sustainer of all things came to pour Himself out. The One who possessed everything became nothing. From the world’s perspective, the cross became the symbol of foolishness. Yet in God’s eyes, Christ became the greatest of the great. He had totally accomplished the purpose which God had sent Him; He had pleased His Father and advanced God’s kingdom on earth. And Philippians states that because of Christ’s downward mobility, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name. Here's the twist. Jesus Christ descended into God’s greatness.

The Incredible Seashell Rooster

Love for God Jesus' Sacrifice Human Worth

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2019-01-30

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 9:15 ; Hebrews 12:2

Author: Mitchell Dillon


As a family in ministry, we often didn't get a lot of quality family time during the holidays. So we had a tradition of taking a post-Christmas family road trip to sunny Florida.  Along with a few gifts, each of our kids was given some cash and the opportunity, along the way, to pick out a few things for themselves. Inevitably, during these trips, we would end up in a south Florida gift shop.

It was during one of those gift shop stops that my youngest son, probably 6 or 7 years old at the time, first spotted an amazing rooster designed almost entirely out of seashells.  He was completely enamored by it. He was also convinced that I would love it as much as he did. 

So he took the seashell rooster to the man at the register to find out how much it would cost him.  After completely emptying his pockets of what was supposed to be his Christmas money, and some negotiation over the difference, he was so proud to walk away with that amazing seashell rooster for me, his father.


From a practical point of view, I have never been given a more worthless gift. But when measured in terms of the sacrifice involved, I have never been given a more meaningful gift. In fact, of all of the gifts I've received over the years, the seashell rooster is still on my mantle. And its value to me only grows with time.

Although it serves no practical purpose, that rooster will always remind me of the time when my son completely forgot about himself, sacrificing all the money he had, in order to bless me. For that reason, it will always be one of my most valued possessions. 

Something similar happened two-thousand years ago when God forgot about Himself in order to bless us. But the gift of God's Son, sacrificed for us, would prove to be anything but impractical. Once received, it would pay for our sins, restore us to right fellowship with God, assure us of our true worth, bestow the promise of the resurrection, and grant us eternal citizenship in God's Kingdom. Receiving Jesus literally satisfies all of our deepest longings and all of our most essential needs.

And when this gift is measured in terms of the sacrifice involved, we see how profoundly wonderful it really is, for it represents the highest price that has ever been paid for anything. God was willing to make the greatest of all sacrifices for the joy of loving us.

You will never be offered a more meaningful gift. May the value that you place on this gift, and the joy that you find in Jesus, only grow in time.

"Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!" (2 Corinthians 9:15).

"Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross ..." (Hebrews 12:2).

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Contributed By: Dan Kelley | Date Posted: 2018-07-13

Scripture: John 8:12 ; John 15:5

Author: Dan Kelley

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Jesus' Humanity Apologetics Witness

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-05-03

Author: Josephus

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Compassion Jesus' Love Responsibility

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-04-29

Scripture: 4:9 ; John 15:13

Author: Illustration Exchange

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The Great Christmas Goat

Christmas Jesus' Love Self-image

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-12-03

Scripture: Romans 8:35 ; Ephesians 3:19

Author: Illustration Exchange

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Law (of God) Fear Jesus' Love

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-07-28

Scripture: John 1:17 ; 1 John 4:18

Author: Illustration Exchange

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Contributed By: Stephen Kingsley | Date Posted: 2016-06-21

Scripture: Hebrews 1:2 ; John 14:18

Author: Stephen Kingsley

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Contributed By: Glenn Newton | Date Posted: 2016-04-28

Scripture: Matthew 9:11 ; Romans 3:10

Author: Glenn Newton

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