Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." John 14:6
Wrong-Way Riegels is the California football player who, at the 1929 Rose Bowl game, ran the ball 69 yards the wrong way and scored a touchdown for the opposing team. Wrong-Way Corrigan is the fellow who in 1938 filed a flight plan from New York to California and 28 hours later landed in Dublin, Ireland. Thankfully, that kind of thing no longer can happen. Today we have global positioning systems in our cars and on our cellular phones.
At least that's the way it's supposed to be.
Sadly, there can be a great big difference between the way things are supposed to be and the way things really are. Evidence of that comes from the great North ... the airport in Fairbanks, Alaska.
In two weeks, two different drivers -- drivers who were following advice given to them by the maps on their Apple iPhones -- ended up on taxiway bravo and drove across the main runway of that community's international airport.
So great was their trust in the Apple iPhone, both motorists decided to ignore numerous signs warning them they were entering a restricted area and the gate which had been placed in position to tell folks they were doing something that was not only illegal, but unwise.
Now for those of you who use iPhones, you can be comforted in the knowledge that by the time you read this devotion, Apple says it will have the matter taken care of. That's good. We don't need people getting lost on earth or on their way to heaven.
You see, Wrong-Way Riegels and Corrigan, along with our Alaskan drivers, remind us that a person needs to be careful as to where he's going. You may think you are headed in the right direction but, in actuality, you may be going 180 degrees wrong.
When it comes to flight plans and Rose Bowl games such a misdirected mistake can be embarrassing. When the error causes you to end up on a jet's runway, it can be fatal.
But when a person goes the wrong direction spiritually, the consequences are always damning.
Sadly, when it comes to eternal life, there are many people who are headed the wrong way. Some are following the guidance of other religions and false prophets; others are positive they know where they're going and are confident they can reach the destination all on their own. Still others are pretty sure it doesn't make any difference what direction you go as long as you are sincere in believing you're headed the right way.
All of these self-decided directions are dangerous, disastrous and damning.
The truth is if you want to get to heaven, you will do so only if Jesus is your Savior and Lord. In the 14th chapter of John, the Savior said He was the way, the truth, and the life. He chose His words carefully. He wanted everyone to know there aren't many ways to heaven and there aren't multiple truths in which we can believe. Jesus has the only Name which saves us because He is the only Son of God, who gave Himself to defeat our enemies and win for us forgiveness and salvation.
This is why you, your church, your Synod, and Lutheran Hour Ministries does its best to warn people that without Jesus, well, without Jesus they're headed the wrong way.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, because of Holy Spirit-given faith in Jesus as my Savior I am headed in the right direction. Now I pray You will grant success to all who try to point the lost in the right direction to salvation. In the Savior's Name I ask it. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries