“Whenever I drive to the east side of Portland over the Marquam Bridge, I’m reminded of what it took for God to save us. On the upper deck of that two-decker freeway spanning the wide Willamette River, you can catch a glimpse of an exit that drops off into empty space.
When the bridge was built back in the mid-1960s, it was designed to accommodate an east-running freeway still on the drawing boards, which was to be known as the Mount Hood Freeway. But the freeway was never built. Oregon voters opted for a light rail line instead, and plans for the highway were scrapped.
Even though there is no Mount Hood Freeway, you can certainly see Mount Hood from the top deck of the Marquam Bridge. On a clear day it looms on the eastern horizon—a symmetrical, snow-capped beauty. And if you look carefully, you can see how the bridge was built to accommodate a freeway lane veering off to the southeast. It juts out just a bit from the bridge structure, then is cut off as though sliced by a giant knife.
The “exit,” permanently blocked, now goes nowhere—except into the waters of the Willamette far below. You can see Mount Hood in all its beauty, glistening like a jewel in the distance… But you could never, never reach the high slopes of that mighty peak via the Mount Hood Freeway, because the freeway doesn’t exist.
That’s a picture of man’s relationship with God. We might understand there is a God and even yearn to reach him across an impossible distance. We might recognize his power and glory, his majesty and goodness, and desire with all our hearts to know him and be with him. But the distance is too great. The gulf is too wide. Only through Jesus Christ can we cross that gulf to God the Father.”
That is from a book written by Ron Mehl called Love Found a Way. I think the picture Ron Mehl paints here is great. The distance between God and us is a gulf that cannot be crossed without the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The exclusivity of Jesus is one of the reasons the Gospel of Jesus is so disliked in our world. People want to know why Jesus is the only way. They want to know why they are not good enough on their own. They want to know why they must believe the Gospel in order to be saved. That’s what I’m going to blog about this week.
For further study read Romans 3:9-24.
How does Romans describe the natural condition of all people?
What does Romans say about the guilt or innocence of all people?
What does Romans say is the cure for these problems?