Copper Plating

Copper Plating


If any man be in Christ . . . behold, all things are become new (II Corinthians 5:17).

Purpose of the Illustration

  1. To  show  the  change which  takes  place  when Christ comes into the soul.

  2. To point out the visible changes which are evident in one who is a Christian.

  3. To show the polishing effect of conversion on one's life.


  1. A thin piece of iron, about the size of a small ruler.

  2. A knife with an iron blade. Various other iron objects.

  3. A glass or bottle deep enough so that the iron objects can be immersed in it.

  4. A small piece of polishing cloth.


A quantity of copper sulphate.

Method of Procedure

  1. Dissolve as much copper sulphate as possible in the water needed for the experiment.

  2. Heat the water until a point of saturation is reached and no more copper sulphate will dissolve in it.

  3. Do this at home, or if you have time available you may make this a part of the experiment.

  4. On the platform dip the iron ruler and the knife and other iron objects into the blue copper sulphate solution. Leave the objects there until they are copper-plated.  This will require testing at home.

  5. Gently polish the copper-coated objects until they shine.

Chemical Reaction

  1. The copper sulphate solution creates a copper coat on the iron objects immersed in it. This chemical is highly poisonous and care must be used in its handling and disposal.

Cautions and Representations

  1. Practice this experiment at home until you are sure: (a) that you have a solution strong enough to coat the iron objects; (b) that the objects used will take the coating; (c) that when you polish the objects the coating will not rub off.   All this demands precaution.

  2. The iron objects represent the unconverted heart.

  3. The copper solution represents the power of Christ to change the heart of a sinner, or the blood of Jesus, which "cleanseth us from all sin," or the power of conversion.

  4. The polishing, which brings out the luster of the copper, stands for the gentle polishing power of the Holy Spirit in changing a rough character into a polished Christian.

  5. If you want to represent Christ's power to change various kinds of sinners, you may use various kinds of iron objects, the more the better, but be certain they will take the copper coating.

Christ is the great changer of the human heart. No one can come to Him and be converted and go away the same as he came. In the wonderful story—set out your materials—of the wise men, the record says they returned home by "another way." So it is with the sinner who comes to Christ. He becomes a new creature through conversion and goes away a changed being, all things becoming new.

In this container—show the copper sulphate solution —I have a magic chemical mixture which has the power to alter the color of these old iron objects, and make them bright and shining. You will notice that I have various objects; this illustrates the fact that Christ is no respecter of persons but is able to save all those who come unto Him. He saves men of all races and of all conditions of life. No sinner is so dark that He cannot change him and he becomes a new creature in Christ

The most powerful changing element in the world is Christ's blood. It stands for His sacrifice on the Cross. It means His life for the redemption of the world. He lived gloriously, died nobly that the world might be saved, and in doing this He gave His blood, the atoning instrument and means.

Dip the objects one by one into the solution. This is the way lives are immersed in "the fountain filled with blood." And when they have met the conditions laid down the confession of sins, the forsaking of sins and belief on the Lord Jesus Christ, they come out—take out an object—completely changed, bright where they were dark, shining where they were vile, pure where they were sinful.  Look at the iron ruler. Remember how dark it was? See now how copper-like or golden it appears.

This is what Christ does for the sinner when He saves him. John Bunyan came a dark, vile sinner, who had gone to the depths of iniquity but he came out of "the fountain filled with blood" pure and clean, so pure and holy that God used him to tell the world's most wonderful story of the progress of a Christian pilgrim from sin's sloughs to the City Celestial. John came vile, but he went away like this copper object "all things [were} become new."

God took Africanus, that dark, vile cannibal in Africa, one of the world's most vicious savages, and through the power of the Gospel as taught and lived by a missionary, He turned that wild savage into a Christian, who loved and served the Lord. It was Christ's atoning life and blood—represented by this blue solution—that made the transformation.

John Gough was a drunkard who came to the foun­tain. He lingered there and met God's conditions, and went away a changed person who became one of the world's greatest temperance lecturers. Moody came a stammering youth of sixteen, but He went away polished—polish some of the objects—polished by the Spirit's power until he became one of the world's greatest soul winners.

This is the story of Christ and His power to save. He takes those who come to Him and by His own power changes them into His own likeness. The black become white; the dark, pure; the impure, clean. His blood works the change.

Paul was the persecutor of the Church, but on the Damascus road he met Jesus face to face and was converted. Henceforth he became the Gospel preacher, the apostle by divine appointment, the carrier of the Gospel to the Gentiles. Christ changed his life and outlook and altered his entire personality until the persecutor himself fought with wild beasts at Ephesus and was persecuted even to his death.

There is no life so vile that Jesus—as this copper sulphate changes the objects put into it—cannot alter and polish it. Never yet has He turned a soul away. Come, sinners, poor and needy, come young, come old, and He will change you into His divine image.

John Newton at one time in his career was so low that he belonged to a slave woman in Africa. She owned him body and soul. When she fed him, she would rake the bones and meat she did not want from her table to the floor, where poor John would eat the scraps.

One day, when fortune changed, John was sailing on the Mediterranean Sea on a slave ship, and a mighty storm came up. John, the captain and the crew began to pray, and when it looked as if death faced them all, John, as he prayed, saw Jesus' outstretched hand. Looking, he lived, and living he was saved thoroughly, completely, genuinely by Christ's blood. Henceforth he lived as a Christian.

God opened to his spiritual ears the melodies of heaven, and John Newton became one of the world's greatest writers of sacred songs. It was the blood, the cleansing and empowering life of Christ, which altered John until he could truly say, "Behold, all things are become new."

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