Broad Side of a Barn

You may or may not be familiar with the quote "You couldn't hit the broad side of a barn." This is a reference to very poor aim. Imagine a bow hunter who sees his target... an easy shot... a beautiful buck with a huge rack of antlers. He loads his arrow, pulls back on the string, aims, then lets the arrow fly in the direction of the animal -- but falls short by 10 feet. He missed the mark! His friends might give him a hard time implying that he couldn't hit the broad side of a barn with a shot like that.

The Bible talks about us missing the mark as well. Paul writes:

There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God... (Romans 3:22-23)

It makes no difference where we are born, who our parents are, the color of our skin, the lineage we claim... we are all alike when our very best is compared to God's holiness -- we miss the mark. We fall short. But there is good news. Paul continues:

...and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. (Romans 3:24)

Although we cannot measure up, Jesus redeemed our lives from sin's grip, paid the penalty for our wrongs on the cross, and demonstrated His power to make us right before God by rising from the dead. Grace hit the mark for us through faith in Christ.

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)


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