L. Maurice Bessinger honorably served the country he loved in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He created thousands of jobs and paid millions of dollars in taxes.
Mark 11 tells us when Jesus was asked to name the first commandment, he said: “The first of all the commandments is, ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength,’ and the second is this, ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is no other commandment greater than these.’”
The Maurice Bessinger I met in 1977 was a man who fulfilled Christ’s first commandment: He loved the Lord, his God, with all his heart, with all his mind, with all his soul and with all his strength.
He also fulfilled Christ’s second commandment. He gave away hundreds of Bibles, thousands of Radio Bible Class publications and dozens of complete Bible commentaries. He turned his special-events banquet room into a lighthouse mission, where he and others held Bible studies and where Maurice experienced some of his greatest joy: seeing fellow humans (his neighbors) confess Jesus as lord.
And let me make one thing clear: Maurice rejoiced when red-skinned neighbors, yellow-skinned neighbors, black-skinned neighbors or white-skinned neighbors asked Jesus into their life as savior and lord.