Pulling on Both Oars

[157 words]

An old Scotsman operated a small rowboat for transporting passengers.

One day a passenger noticed that the old man had carved on one oar the word “Faith” and on the other oar the word “Works.” Curious, he asked the meaning.

The old man replied, “I’ll show you.” He dropped the “faith” oar and pulled the “works” oar. The boat went around in circles. Then he dropped that oar and pulled the “faith” oar. The little boat went around in circles in the opposite direction.

After this demonstration, the old man picked up Faith and Works and began plying both oars together. The boat sped swiftly over the water.

The old man explained, “You see, that is the way it is in the Christian life. Dead works without faith are useless, and faith without works is dead also, getting you nowhere. But faith and works pulling together make for safety, progress, and blessing.” Read James 2:14–26.

Brett Petrillo
Denver, CO

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