During Christmas time one of my favorite movies to watch is the Polar Express. A few weeks ago my wife and I were watching this movie one night and it occurred to me what a great parallel it is to what happens to someone at salvation.
For those of you who have never watched the movie let me give you a quick synopsis. The whole movie is focused on a little boy who does not believe in Santa Clause. He has a dream that he is on a train with other children and they are headed to the North Pole. He was given a ticket to hold onto when he boarded the train. Upon arrival to the North Pole all of the kids are excited to see Santa but the train car they are on accidentally gets unhitched from the rest of the train. This puts them on an adventure where they end up finding Santa’s huge pile of presents for all of the kids in the world. They see the reindeer and all of the elves. Then Santa arrives! The boy is trying to see Santa over all of the other children and elves but he can’t see him. Then, a bell breaks loose from a harness on the sleigh and the boy retrieves it. At first he does not hear the bell when it rings because he does not believe. But when he believes he hears the bell ring and Santa appears behind him and entrusts the bell to him and leaves with the reindeer.
The bible says, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile” (Romans 1:16).
The word believe in this passage is more than a mental assent to facts. It means to be persuaded of and to place confidence in. To be persuaded of and to place confidence in the gospel. The gospel being that Jesus Christ came to earth to die as a sacrifice for my personal sins. That he was buried and God resurrected Him from the grave proclaiming that sin had been defeated.
So, just like the little boy in the movie, at one time we did not believe. We had to be convinced that Jesus was who he said he was. In the movie the little boy saw all of the evidence that Santa was real, i.e. the sleigh, reindeer and the elves. He was convinced and then He believed. Jesus went to great lengths to show us that he was the true Messiah too. He performed miracles of healing, he spoke of things that proved He was God, he created something from nothing (remember the wine at the wedding feast?).
One of the biggest correlations I think this movie has to salvation is when the little boy finally believed. When he believed his ears were opened and he could hear the bell ring. His whole outlook changed and he came to life. When God gifts us with saving faith that is exactly what happens to us. When our eyes are opened to Jesus and we see him for who He is and what He has done on our behalf, our whole outlook changes. A light comes into us and we say “wow!” Thank you! And we are new creations with a whole new set of eyes and ears.
This Christmas season, reflect on the time when God revealed Jesus to you. Thank Him for giving His life to you. Pray that God will lead you to someone that you can share His life with.
If you have any questions about salvation or what it means to believe in Jesus please call us. We would love the opportunity to talk with you and answer any questions you may have.