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Wm F P Burton
No Weapons
So Near, So Far
Ignoring Warning
Night up a Tree
Living Stones
Gaol Bird
Queen of the Night
The Atheist
Out of a Horrible Pit

Wm. F. P. Burton

The Counterfeit

What a medley of swindling cheating and hypocrisy is concentrated around those diamond diggings!

A farmer, whom we will call Hauteng, was not above doing an occasional deal in illicit gold or diamond buying. At night, the natives would come to him and sell their stolen gems, and he would pay them an absurdly small sum, so making substantial gains for his hazard in risking imprisonment for illicit diamond buying.

One night there came a knock at the farm-house door and a native presented himself, saying, "I have a very secret errand." Seeing that the curtains were drawn tightly, the farmer asked him his business, and for reply the native untwisted his loincloth and produced a magnificent diamond. Hauteng knew the business well, and examined the stone. There was no doubt. It was a flawless gem of the first water.

After considerable bargaining they arrived at a price probably one-fifth of the real value but still it was far more than Hauteng could reasonably afford. The money was counted out on to the table but before parting with his gem the native pocketed the diamond and said that he must first go outside to consult his mates and see if they agreed.

A few moments later he was back to conclude the transaction. The native took the roll of banknotes, apparently left the diamond on the table, said "Goodnight!" and departed.

Delighted with his bargain, Hauteng called his wife to see the lovely gem, but as he picked it up he was shocked to find that what he held was a worthless glass imitation. The native had substituted a counterfeit gem for the genuine diamond.

Shocked, furious, he rushed to the door shouting, "Hi! Come back! You've swindled me." But, of course, there was no reply. His money was gone and he was left with a bauble. He could make no appeal to the Police, for the transaction was illegal. How he must have regretted his folly!

Friend, God has loved you so much that He has sent His Son to die for you, His Spirit to woo you, His messengers to bring you the Gospel and His precious Book to direct you.

The devil would offer worldly, unsatisfying pleasure, sin, pride.

Are you prepared to bargain away your soul's salvation? Will you listen to the deceiver's lies? "In God's presence is fulness of joy and at His right hand there are pleasures for evermore." (Psalm 16 v 11)

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