This past weekend my wife, the dogs and I traveled to visit one of our daughters and her family near Detroit. Originally, the plan was to attend a harvest festival on Saturday, but the weather was not cooperating. Instead, our daughter scheduled us for an adventure called Escape Games.
Basically, your group is locked into a room where a “crime” has occurred and the task is to work through the clues in an effort to solve the crime. After about an hour, or if you solve the crime, the door is unlocked and you are set free.
The host ushered our group into the “crime scene” and after looking at the collection of people standing in front of him, gave us a walkie-talkie and said something like, “I am sure you will be calling me soon to ask for help with the clues.”
Just because our group consisted of two of our grandchildren, one almost 10 and the other 12, our daughter, son-in-law and their friend, all in their 30’s, and my wife and I who are in our sixties, I saw no reason for the obvious lack of confidence in us. I mean just look at that picture. If there was a serious crime to be solved, what other group would you want to work on the case?
Anyway, with the door closed we started our investigation. We had to find our way through some simple clues that gave us a chance to open locked boxes that held other clues. I watched in amazement as everyone, even the nine-year-old worked together in an attempt to find the answers to the mystery. There were many theories about the right answers to the clues.
Eventually we solved the mystery of the murder. Joe Don Prank had shot Mr. Smithers with a revolver in the kitchen. We were all rather pleased with ourselves because we had solved the crime and felt even better as the proprietor set us free from the room and mentioned he should have given us a tougher case to solve.
As I think back on that experience, I am thankful there is something this same group is free from and there was no mystery about how we all were given that freedom. You see, all seven of us were locked in something much more dangerous than a simple room. We were all prisoners of the sin in our lives. The Bible tells us in Psalm 51:5 Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Being sinful we were all in line for the punishment of God. He demands perfection. Living a perfect life is a mystery that no human can solve. And that locks us out of heaven.
That is where Jesus stepped in and solved the mystery for us. We do not have to search for clues. We do not have to rely on the wisdom of someone else. In his completely selfless act of sacrifice he came to earth as a human, lived a perfect life and then suffered all the punishment we deserved by dying on the cross. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16.
Take another look at that group up there. They were once unclean in God’s sight because of their sin. Now they are washed clean by what Jesus did. In fact, the Bible says the sins of those who have faith in Jesus are washed whiter than snow.
Heaven is not a mystery. We cannot earn entrance by living a certain way, following any rituals or even by belonging to the “right” church. Jesus paid our way into heaven with his death on the cross. That is love–that is grace. Thank you Jesus.
Hope you come back sometime I will wait you.