"At the Controls"
October 21, 2013
If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. Romans 10:9-10
It was a scene taken right from a Hollywood movie.
The pilot of the small plane had become incapacitated, and there was no one on board who had any flying experience. Someone did have the ability to put out a mayday emergency call and officials at England's Humberside Airport swung into action.
Quickly, Humberside called up some of their resident flight instructors and put them in touch with one of the passengers.
The instructors put the unnamed individual at the plane's controls and told him how to bring it back toward the airfield. When that had been accomplished, they had the unnamed man make a couple of practice runs at the field. They brought him down to where he was almost on the runway and then told him to "give it the gas" and circle the airport again.
When the instructors felt the novice pilot was as proficient as he was likely to get, they brought him down. The plane bounced. Spectators said they saw some sparks fly from the front end. It didn't make any difference. The plane and the people were safe.
It's a pretty spectacular story. Certainly, it's not one whose success will be regularly repeated.
Of course, when it comes to our eternal salvation, such a thing will never happen. In the history of humankind, nobody has ever been told how to make a safe landing all on his own. That is because the only thing we sinners can do with our souls is crash and die.
True, there are many voices that will do their best to try and talk us down. The centuries have seen many self-appointed religious prophets and confident philosophers offer what they considered to be sage advice. Sadly, any advice which comes from a brother sinner is going to be flawed, faulty and ineffective. That's why their followers will go down in flames.
This is why we need a Savior.
Jesus didn't sit in some distant control tower and give us advice; He didn't stay in heaven and radio some directions on what we ought to do. No, Jesus became one of us. He lived, died and rose for us. In doing so He carried our sins and accomplished all that was necessary for our salvation.
That is why all who believe on Him can be at peace. They know the Master is at the controls. Because of Jesus we know we will have safe landing in heaven.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks the Savior is at the controls of my life. Without Him, I and eternity would be lost. Now may the Holy Spirit plant a trusting faith in the hearts of unbelievers so they, too, may be brought safely to the heavenly destination Jesus wishes to give them. In the Savior's Name I ask it. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries