Someone once said, “As Christians we stand at the gates of hell and redirect traffic.” When I contemplate our efforts as Christians in evanglism, I am reminded of the ending scene of the movie “Schindler’s List”. Years ago that scene left me undone and made (and still has) a big impact on me, a native German. My grandfather who was born in 1925 fell for Nazi propaganda while indoctrinated in the Hitler Youth. I tried telling him about the Lord in a letter, after I had come to the States and became a Christian. The letter arrived a day after he passed away. Maybe it’s because of this deep sadness over my family’s past that this particular scene etched itself onto the wallpaper of my mind as a warning and also encouragement. I think of that scene especially when it comes to my lack of motivation to speak the Truth. In many ways Schindler redirected traffic; in many ways I fail to do this.
Schindler was an accidental philanthropist though. In order to keep his business afloat and continue his pompous lifestyle in Germany during WWII, he employed Jews in his factory. The factory later became a safe haven for over a thousand Jews and kept them from a sure death in a concentration camp. In this scene, as he is about to flee from the Allies as the war ended, he has become a different man and recognizes the worth of human beings. He is overcome with a love for his fellow man. Instead of bringing hell up from the pit, as the Nazis did, he brought heaven down to earth, even with his faulty motives.
Humans bear the image of God, the Imago Dei. We are the crown of creation, each and every person, the young, the old, the able, and the disabled, no matter color, race, culture and background. Ideologies that say something different, come from hell. God expresses the value He gave us through His love for us. A great love needed a great expression. God loved the world so much that He gave His only Son Jesus to the world so all who would believe in Him would have life with Him now and forever. This was, is and always will be the greatest news.
Standing at the gates of hell sounds like dangerous business. I don’t like the heat and don’t like to tell people that they are sinners and are in need of God’s forgiveness. However, when I am moved by love, I am emboldened to speak the Truth. When I allow Christ’s love to transforms my heart I become a tool in His hand that redirects the traffic, so that He can save “One More Person”.
Owe no one anything, except to love each other,
for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.