…how much more did…the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many.
~ Romans 5:15
In 2014, author Boris Johnson wrote a book entitled, The Churchill Factor: How One Man Made History. In his book, Johnson makes the case that our present world would be a very different place had it not been for the presence of one solitary man—Winston Churchill, Prime Minister of Great Britain during World War II.
To make his point, Johnson paints the following scene. It is May of 1940. Churchill has just become Prime Minister. The war is not just going badly for Britain; it is going very badly. She is alone. Her armed forces are weak. Her allies in Europe are in collapse. The United States is in no position to help. And the Nazi military machine is devouring territory in real time. Churchill meets with his cabinet. The question before them is simple. Does Britain cut a deal with Hitler, thereby saving countless British lives, or does it choose to fight? Johnson asserts that we forget how close—how very close—Britain came to cutting that deal. One man, Churchill, convinced them to fight. Remove Churchill from that cabinet meeting, Johnson says, and Western Civilization as we know it would have vanished.
As irreplaceable as Winston Churchill may have been, however, even the rescue of Western Civilization is a small matter in comparison to what lay in the balance at another time. That time was when all of humanity was lost in a darkness of its own making. It was not the darkness of Nazi rule or political repression. It was the darkness of sin—yours and mine. Such darkness meant a pointless, miserable experience, separated from the goodness of God. Such darkness also meant the reality of eternal death. And there was not a thing anyone could do to stop it.
Except for one man. And this one man was more than a man. He was the very Son of God who chose to walk among us as a human being. On our behalf, Jesus Christ lived the perfect life that the holy God demands. Then, in our place, Jesus took upon himself all of the punishment that all of sinful humanity deserved. And at the cross he paid the price in full.
That one man—the God-man, Jesus—changed everything. Our rescue is complete. Forgiveness is ours. Now, through faith in him, the darkness is gone.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, you are the one man who has changed everything. Move me by your Spirit to look to you alone. Amen.