In 1936, during the Spanish Civil War, Russia suggested that she “help” the Spanish Republic by taking care of the country’s gold. Now wasn’t that nice of Stalin!
It seemed an excellent idea to the Spanish Republic, as General Franco and his African Army were just around the corner – so to speak. And socialists could trust socialists, couldn’t they?
So it was that hundreds of tonnes of gold (worth 14 billion, 360 million Dollars in today’s money) were loaded onto four Russian ships. There was so much gold, it took three nights to load, and on October 25 1936, the cargo of gold set sail from Spain bound for Russia.
And, YES – you’ve guessed right – Spain never did get her gold back!
But before you feel too sorry for the Spaniards, remember the Spanish were no better. They had stolen unbelievable treasures of gold from the Incas and the Aztecs.
Gold is strange stuff. It’s hard to destroy. Although Moses did find an innovative way to get rid of the golden calf. He ground it into powder and put it into the water, and made the offenders drink it. Gold has no nutritional value, and so it passed right through their bodies. I can imagine their dismay, when every visit to the toilet was like pouring away a fortune!
Look at that gold band on your finger. No known natural substance can destroy it. So that gold band you are wearing is very old and probably has a long history. It could have been made from gold from a goldmine, BUT it could have been recycled. It may be part of the Spanish gold that Russia “kept safe!”for the Spanish. Or perhaps your ring was made from gold that the Spaniards stole from South America. Maybe your ring was once gold won in a gambling den. It could have been stolen Nazi gold, allegedly laundered by Switzerland, or stolen by the Vatican, or traded for tungsten from Portugal.
As you look at your gold ring, and think about its past, take a moment to think about your own past. Remember the pitfalls you fell into, and the wrong turns you made that led you into places where you never should have been. And you just can’t wipe off the stains that sin makes.
But the Lord can, and He did! Now you are just like that glittering gold band!
Job 23:10! “The Lord… knows the way that I take: when he has tried me, I shall come forth as gold. “
We will never know where gold comes from. But it’s been melted down, and refined. It is “pure” gold now. It has no history.
And as you look at that ring on your finger, remember that you are just like the gold your ring is made of. You haven’t been recycled – you’ve been born again! You have been melted and moulded! You have no past! You have no history!