For Want of a Nail

One proverb I read early in life was titled, “For Want of a Nail.” It shows the difference a little thing can make. A little thing can make the difference between life and death!

Numerous stories, proverbs and wise sayings teach that small things can bring serious consequences. There are various versions of the proverb titled “For Want of a Nail,” but a basic version is as follows:


For want of a nail the shoe was lost.

For want of a shoe the horse was lost.

For want of a horse the rider was lost.

For want of a rider the message was lost.

For want of a message the battle was lost.

For want of a battle the kingdom was lost.

And all for the want of a horseshoe nail!


H.G. Wells wrote the famous story War of the Worlds, in which the invading Martians are defeated by little bacteria, “the humblest things that God, in His wisdom, has put upon this earth” (Wells, H. G. War of the Worlds, p. 269).

One of my favorite authors, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, is credited with saying: “It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.” Certainly, his Sherlock Holmes character was keenly observant of the little details in solving mysteries. Small details could be the clues that solve the mystery.

Famous Dutch painter Vincent Van Gogh said, “Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.” Big things are made of little things. The big earth is made of little atoms. A big company is composed of many individuals.

Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. (from 1902 to 1932) said, “Life is a great bundle of little things.” Indeed, our life is a series of little daily events and decisions.

Proverbs 30 speaks of small things that are remarkable: ants, which are “exceedingly wise,” preparing their food in the summer; rock badgers, which though feeble, thrive in safe homes in rocks; locusts, which have no king but act in organized ranks; and the spider, which even dwells in kings’ palaces (vv. 24–28).

The kingdom of heaven is compared to a small mustard seed (Matthew 13:31–32). Yet, Christ told His disciples if they only had “faith as a mustard seed” they could move mountains (Matthew 17:20).

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said that “till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled” (Matthew 5:17–18). A jot is a small Hebrew letter resembling an apostrophe, and a tittle is small stroke of the pen. Though small, both are preserved until all is fulfilled.

In Luke 6, after Jesus chose the Twelve Apostles, He spoke to the multitudes, making an oft overlooked statement: “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say? Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them, I will show you whom he is like: He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock. But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great” (Luke 6:46–49).

Christianity has never been more at odds with doing what Christ actually says to do! For “want of a nail,” the very knowledge of God’s soon-coming kingdom was lost—along with many other important truths! Instead of blindly and haphazardly going along, look into your own Bible and see what Christ says to do. To help you find the important things Christ said in the pages of your own Bible, we offer the many booklets, articles and telecasts available on this website—especially “The Mystery of the Kingdom of God.” Check it out today.

It will only take a little of your time, but could affect so much!

Article source:


Most people have not actually been inside a jail. It’s not a place that anyone wants to be. Yet, jails are filling up and new ones can’t be built fast enough. Local, state and federal penal systems are strained beyond capacity, and they struggle for increases in their budgets to meet the demands placed upon their institutions.

Having a prison record and the stigma that goes with being tagged a “jailbird” makes it very difficult after one’s release to assimilate by becoming employed, obtaining housing and being involved in productive, gainful activities. When these difficulties come up (as they almost inevitably will), many newly released prisoners end up back in prison. Some repeat this cycle multiple times. On the other hand, some individuals with a prison record do learn their lesson and successfully re-enter society, going on to have successful, law-abiding lives.

Another aspect of the prison scene is that sometimes innocent people who are not guilty of a crime end up behind bars. There are many reasons that the system can fail to properly mete out justice. Sometimes a person is falsely accused. Anciently, in the Bible, we have the example of Joseph, the favored son of Jacob, also known as Israel. Joseph’s brothers resented him and were jealous of the partiality shown to him by their father. In a rage, they seized an opportunity and cruelly sold Joseph into slavery. Despite this grim fate, Joseph showed godly behavior and his Egyptian master came to greatly value his service, giving him much responsibility. Sadly, the master’s wife did not have good character and tried to seduce Joseph. He refused her advances, so she falsely accused him of assaulting her. He was imprisoned for years. Yet, even there his abilities were recognized, and he was given a lot of responsibility. Through a series of events brought about by God, Joseph was brought before the Pharaoh to interpret a troubling dream. The king was so impressed that he put Joseph in charge of the country’s food production and storage in preparation for a great famine. Joseph was a “jailbird” that was used by God in a special way.

In the New Testament, we see that the religious establishment was very upset by the teachings of Jesus Christ and the activities of the apostles. A great stir occurred after the Day of Pentecost in 31AD, as Peter preached powerful messages of repentance and the role of Jesus Christ. After he publicly healed a man who had been crippled from birth, the authorities had Peter and the other apostles thrown in jail. God miraculously released them, and they continued to actively carry out the commission that they had been given by Jesus. No doubt their detractors referred to them as some sort of “jailbirds.”

Paul, a Pharisee who was a persecutor of the followers of Jesus Christ, became the “Apostle to the Gentiles” after his conversion. He was a scholarly man, zealous for the Scriptures. He traveled widely and preached boldly, for which he was imprisoned—sometimes for years—on more than one occasion. He did some of his greatest work while in prison, including writing what are known as the Prison Epistles (Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians and Philemon). Not bad for someone whom many would call a “jailbird.”

Jesus, in his sermon on the Mount of Olives, addressed those who suffer for their beliefs and practices when He said, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:10).

At some point, true Christians will be widely persecuted. In fact, Jesus said, “…the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service” (John 16:2).

How about you? Would you be willing to suffer imprisonment and become a “jailbird” for your belief in the truths of the Bible? Hopefully, something like this will never happen to you, but the Scriptures make it plain that we should be prepared to pay the ultimate price, if necessary, to be a part of the soon-coming Kingdom of God. If you do experience persecution, you have this promise: “For He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we may boldly say: ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?’” (Hebrews 13:5–6).

Our booklet Restoring Original Christianity is an excellent study guide as you consider this important subject. It is available free of charge or obligation, online and in print, right here at Tomorrow’s World.

Article source:

Fleeing When No One Pursues

On Saturday, January 13, Hawaiian residents received the warning on their phones: “Ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill.” Hawaii’s Emergency Management Agency sent this false alarm in error when someone “pushed the wrong button.” Nevertheless, it caused widespread fear and panic!

Imagine yourself receiving a similar message! What would you do?

Some Hawaiians hid their children in sewers to protect them from a missile blast. Many others sought shelter wherever they could. Fear and terror gripped a multitude as a result of the alarm, even though there was no actual missile. It was, according to news reports, nearly 40 long, terrifying minutes until the cancelation message was issued.

In the aftermath, there were embarrassed explanations, investigations initiated and promises made to fix the system. Human errors are easily made, and it is not the purpose of this commentary to determine what happened, nor to pass judgment or blame any individuals involved.

But, consider a biblical prophecy written millennia ago. It is found in Leviticus 26, and it discusses a consequence for disobeying the Almighty God. It simply states:

But if you do not obey Me, and do not observe all these commandments, and if you despise My statutes, or if your soul abhors My judgments, so that you do not perform all My commandments, but break My covenant, I also will do this to you: I will even appoint terror over you, wasting disease and fever which shall consume the eyes and cause sorrow of heart. And you shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it. I will set My face against you, and you shall be defeated by your enemies. Those who hate you shall reign over you, and you shall flee when no one pursues you (vv. 14–17).

Proverbs 28 discusses this phenomenon of fleeing when no one is in pursuit: “The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion” (v. 1). When a person is doing wickedly, they are afraid of being caught. So, any noise—or even their own imagination—can cause them to become fearful and flee. As stated in Leviticus 26, later in the same chapter mentioned above, “And as for those of you who are left, I will send faintness into their hearts in the lands of their enemies; the sound of a shaken leaf shall cause them to flee; they shall flee as though fleeing from a sword, and they shall fall when no one pursues” (v. 36).

The first chapter of the Bible’s “book of wisdom,” Proverbs, states: “Wisdom calls aloud outside … ‘How long, you simple ones, will you love simplicity? For scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge. Turn at my rebuke … because I have called and you refused … I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your terror comes, when your terror comes like a storm and your destruction comes like a whirlwind, when distress and anguish come upon you … But whoever listens to me will dwell safely, and will be secure, without fear of evil’” (vv. 20–33).

Many Tomorrow’s World listeners are familiar with the many end-time prophecies that God declared long ago through His prophets, and which are discussed in our programs, articles and booklets. We offer all of our materials free of charge and encourage readers to prove these things in their own Bibles.

Continue to watch the Tomorrow’s World program, and avail yourself of the many helpful articles and booklets offered for free. You may find the telecast “What’s Ahead for 2018 and Beyond?” of great interest, and valuable for peace of mind.

Article source:

The Plight of Children

According to the United Nations, “Children caught in war zones are increasingly being used as weapons of war—recruited to fight, forced to act as suicide bombers, and used as human shields” (The Guardian, December 27, 2017). According to UNICEF, “parties to conflicts were blatantly disregarding international humanitarian law and children were routinely coming under attack. Rape, forced marriage, abduction and enslavement had become standard tactics in conflicts across Iraq, Syria and Yemen, as well as in Nigeria, South Sudan and Myanmar.”

Children have always been vulnerable, but in societies completely lacking God’s laws (that outline the proper treatment and protection of children), children are at far greater risk of exploitation and abuse. Bible prophecies warn that “in the last days perilous times will come” due to the callousness and brutality of human beings (2 Timothy 3:1-4). These are the results of failing to understand how children are viewed by God, who declares, “Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD” (Psalm 127:3), and who tells fathers, “do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). However there is a better time coming—a time of peace and a time of safety, even for children!

God says about the future, “For I will contend with him who contends with you, and I will save your children” (Isaiah 49:25). When Jesus Christ rules in the Kingdom of God, “All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children” (Isaiah 54:13). God loves children and created them to help fulfill His plan for humanity (Matthew 19:14; Malachi 4:6)! For more insights into the future of humanity—and our children—be sure to read or listen to Your Ultimate Destiny.

Article source: