Imagine traveling from Canada to, say, Japan by a paper plane. It is impossible. We need a passenger jet. Even with it, it will take more than ten hours. Imagine then you’re flying from Toronto to Tokyo with your friends. One of them–let’s call him Tom–however, shows up at the airport with a bag of paper planes that he has made and begins to insist that you take each one to fly to Japan. You’ll be puzzled, annoyed, frustrated, and eventually furious about Tom’s sheer nonsense.
Too many are acting like Tom does; they refuse to get on God’s passenger jet (Christ) and claim that they can get to salvation by their paper planes (their own works). I know for sure that my analogy is not even good because the perfectness of Christ’s person and work and the poverty of our own works is simply incomparable.
God sent us his chartered flight and urges us to get on board: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16 NASB). Likewise, Paul says, “a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law” (Romans 3:28 NASB).
The Bible challenges us to give up our paper plane arrogance–both the arrogance of the “I-deserve-salvation” mentality and the even worse arrogance of the “I-don’t-deserve-salvation” kind of thinking.
Drop your paper plane. Get on board the magnificently engineered jetliner.
(Photo 1: Alexander Schimmeck, Unsplash); (Photo 2: Annie Spratt, Unsplash)