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Best Analogy?

 —  November 20, 2013 — 6 Comments

How does it go again?

  • “The Trinity is kind of like…”
    • “Water. You can have it in three forms – ice, liquid or steam – yet it’s still water.”
    • “A pretzel: there are three components to it, yet it’s tied together by one continuous thread.”
    • “Hot cherry pie: you can cut it into three exact pieces, but as soon as you remove the knife it all oozes back into each other and is still one pie.”
  • “One way to understand the Bible is to think of it like…”
    • “Star Wars: Start reading the New Testament like you should watch the first three movies that came out… what is known as Episodes 4-6 now. And then circle back and read the Old Testament, like watching Episodes 1-3 to understand the back story.”
    • “Getting to know someone by watching old YouTube videos on someone’s account. In this case, that person is God. The Bible is full of so many stories of who He interacted with.”
    • “A jigsaw puzzle. If you stare at one piece, you may get a sense of a piece of the puzzle. You really can’t see the whole picture until everything comes together.”
  • “Your role in the Kingdom of God is just like…”
    • “A football team. God is the coach, and He put different special teams coaches on the field to help you out. You’re on the team. Suit up and make a play.”
    • “An orchestra. Without your instrument, the song is missing something. You can’t just play random notes, though. There is a song that you get to complement in however you’re wired to do it.”
    • “The guy on the corner advertising pizza. Your life is like spinning the sign around to get the attention of random people. You ultimately want them to taste and see that the Lord is good.”

You probably have a handful of analogies you return back to. It’s what Jesus did when he spoke about the Kingdom of God using farming and wedding analogies.

Do you have any that you don’t mind sharing?

Tony Myles

Tony Myles

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Tony Myles is a youth ministry veteran, author, speaker, volunteer youth worker and lead pastor of Connection Church in Medina, Ohio... and he really likes smoothies.

6 responses to Best Analogy?

  1. Christian Abbott November 20, 2013 at 9:38 am

    Should we even use analogies when discussing the Trinity? They all fail terribly and lead to heresy in some way…. So is there a way to effectively teach the trinity without using these heretical analogies?

    • Tony Myles

      Fair question. Arguably, every sermon or message we give is heretical then, too. We always fall short of preaching the “whole” Bible every time we talk about. Even if we read it out loud from cover to cover, there’s also the matter of how it’s received falling short of all its fullness.

      That’s one reason I like the statement in 1 Corinthians 13 that one day we shall know and see God “face to face.” Even in heaven, however, He will still be God and beyond our complete understanding. He’ll never cease to have that over us.

      So “in the meantime…” :)

      I think your point is valid in that we should always tag such analogies with, “This is going to fall way short since it’s a human analogy, but it’s kind of like…” Without that qualification, we do preach heresy; without the illustration, we don’t preach at all.

  2. HA! I’ve totally used that Star Wars analogy! I didn’t know others used it!

  3. God wants all His children to show hope where there is no hope, and light where there is no light. He wants us to reflect His light to a dark world. Just like the moon. A full moon will illuminate a dark world even though the moon has no light of it’s own. Just like the moon. Also, to help the kids remember it, I tell them God wants them to moon the world.

  4. so we’re on the left side, God is on the right, and sin is the canyon in the middle keeping us from God. then the cross of Christ is the bridge between the two. then some obnoxious student says, “what about the bump in the cross?” then you say, “the Holy Spirit flies you over it like a dove!”

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