Saturday, October 9, 2010

A Helpful Analogy

Here is a helpful analogy that I use when explaining goodness among men versus the goodness of God. Like all analogies it is imperfect, but I thought I'd share and get your thoughts.


The problem with descriptive words is that they are almost always relative to what you are talking about. Descriptions are relative. So the question one must always ask is, "compared to what?" Here is what I mean:

A basket ball is BIG when compared to a golf ball...... but compared to the planet Jupiter, the basket ball is TINY.

A stained, dingy rag that is straight out of the wash is CLEAN when compared to a pair of muddy boots..... but compared to a spotless wedding dress, it is DIRTY.

By the same token, descriptions of goodness and holiness are relative based on what we are talking about. According to what standard are we talking about goodness? Ours? Or Gods?

A generally nice person who stays away from scandal, gives to the needy, and pays his taxes may be GOOD when compared to a child molesting serial killer.... but when compared to the perfect holiness and righteousness of God, that good man is actually revoltingly EVIL.

This is why the "at least I'm not like that dude" excuse does not work. This is why the relative "goodness" that we see here on earth is but a tiny shadow of true holiness of God. This why "I am basically a good person" is a horrible farce when we are talking about God's expectations. We cannot try to deal with God on our terms (dirty rags and basket balls). We need to deal with our omnipotent, perfectly righteous God honestly on His terms.

...because when we are talking on terms of Jupiter, calling a basket ball big is just silly. When we are talking about the demands of perfection in God's law, calling any man good is a sad joke.

There is none righteous, no not one. [Romans 3:10]

1 comment:

Rev. Eric J Brown said...

I think this works rather well - especially when you think that if you tried to put that basketball next to Jupiter, Jupiter's gravity would suck it in and collapse it into something incredibly tiny and spottish.