Would The Real Jesus Please Stand Up

Posted: April 23, 2013 in Uncategorized

Counterfeit Benjamin

I went to the bank once with my friend so he could cash his check; then we stopped by a store so he could get a few things. When it came time to pay for his goods, he handed the cashier a hundred dollar bill. She rubbed her fingers over it and made a face. It was not a good face.

She proceeded to hold it up to the light. She turned it over and over in her hands. She studied that bill like there was going to be a quiz. She even sniffed it.

My buddy asked if there was something wrong. She informed him the bill was counterfeit. We didn’t believe it. My friend objected and told her he had just gotten it from the bank, so there was no way it was counterfeit.

That’s when she broke out her marker and settled things. It was indeed a counterfeit.


My friend was incredulous and, I have to admit, so was I. How could this convenience store clerk spot a fake hundred dollar bill when a bank teller could not?

Aren’t bank tellers like professional money handlers or something? They are around money all day. Shouldn’t they be the first ones to spot a counterfeit?

McDonald’s sends their employees to Hamburger University to learn how to put a slab of beef between two pieces of bread. Shouldn’t tellers have to go to Phony Money University or the College of the Real McCoy? I mean seriously…right?

I had to know what made her the Qualified Queen of Counterfeit Cash. She proceeded to explain.  She had worked at her father’s store when she was younger. Her father worked many hours to make ends meet but they still struggled. Occasionally she would get hit with a counterfeit bill and her father would become upset with her.

She determined that it would never happen again. She studied the bad bill religiously. The feel and texture of the paper. The color of the ink. The way light shone through the paper. In time she could tell a bill was counterfeit the second it was placed in her hands.

She proudly proclaimed, “I never got stuck with a bad bill again.”

Too bad my friend could not say the same.

So It Got Me Thinking 

How come the bank teller was not as passionate as Sally (we learned her name) was about spotting counterfeit money?

This is the conclusion I came to: Sally had a personal stake in the ability to determine whether a bill was fake or not. If she had continued to be fooled by the bad bills, her family business would suffer, her father would be disappointed with her, and she would probably lose her job. Learning how to spot phony money directly benefited her.

But more importantly, she had made a decision. She had taken a stand. This was never again going to happen to her. She would be the Victor not the Victim.  She not only made that declaration but she followed it up with action. She took the steps necessary to learn everything she could about spotting fakes. She told us she also spent quite a bit of time studying and examining real money. In fact, she shared with us, she had spent considerably more time studying the genuine article.


False teachers are just as real as fake money. The trick is knowing when someone is trying to deceive you. But is it really a trick? Was Sally’s discovery of the counterfeit one hundred bill a trick?

Sally had taken the necessary steps to condition herself to become an expert in the field of identifying counterfeit money. Being informed is not a trick. Knowing what to look for is the key to success. An intimate understanding of the genuine article hinders an imposter’s ability to deceive you.

What Big Teeth You Have, Granny 

I’m sure you’ve heard the fairy tale of Little Red Riding Hood. The wolf eats granny, slips into her pajamas, and hops into bed. In the story, Red sees right through the costume. But that is not always the case in real life.

Luke, the writer of the Book of Acts warns us:

I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away the disciples after them. So be on guard! (Acts 20:29-31)

And Jesus warned, “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, (or dressed as granny), but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.”

The wolf in the fairy tale was easy to spot. He had more hair than granny. More teeth than granny. And he had big feet. But how are we supposed to spot the wolves?

Red Riding Hood knew the answer. She knew what her real granny looked like.

Know What The Real Jesus Looks Like 


  1. dianaflegal says:

    Great word Rob. Believers need to be discerning now more than ever!

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