Same Boat Ministries

Why Same Boat Ministries ??

When speaking the last few years with groups in Venezuela and here in Texas about Rescue Mission Venezuela, God has given me a visual image of a group of people in a boat floating down a beautiful river. The day is gorgeous and the surrounding landscape is lush and green, with magnificent trees on both banks and a cloudless sky. The people are having lots of fun, laughing, drinking and without a care in the world. What they do not know, as they continue to travel downstream with the current, is that around the next bend is a deadly waterfall that will take them all down to destruction. Romans 3:9-20 (Message Bible) sums this up. We are all born into the SAME SINKING BOAT:

So where does that put us?  Do we Jews get a better break than the others? Not really. Basically, all of us, whether insiders or outsiders, start out in identical conditions, which is to say that we all start out as sinners. Scripture leaves no doubt about it: There's nobody living right, not even one, nobody who knows the score, nobody alert for God. They've all taken the wrong turn; they've all wandered down blind alleys. No one's living right; I can't find a single one. Their throats are gaping graves, their tongues slick as mudslides. Every word they speak is tinged with poison. They open their mouths and pollute the air. They race for the honor of sinner-of-the-year, litter the land with heartbreak and ruin, don't know the first thing about living with others. They never give God the time of day. This makes it clear, doesn't it, that whatever is written in these Scriptures is not what God says about others but to us to whom these Scriptures were addressed in the first place! And it's clear enough, isn't it, that we're sinners, every one of us, in the SAME SINKING BOAT with everybody else. Our involvement with God's revelation doesn't put us right with God. What it does is force us to face our complicity in everyone else's sin.

Luke 17:26,34 (Message Bible) reiterates:

The time of the Son of Man will be just like the time of Noah-everyone carrying on as usual, having a good time right up to the day Noah boarded the ship.  On that Day, two men will be in the SAME BOAT fishing-one taken, the other left.

When we were rescued from certain destruction by the work of God through His Son Jesus, we were lifted out of the SINKING BOAT and placed in a NEW BOAT together with other Christians, heading in a new direction towards eternal life with God. 2 Corinthians 5:14-15 (Message Bible) describes this new position:

Our firm decision is to work from this focused center: One man died for everyone. That puts everyone in the SAME BOAT. He included everyone in his death so that everyone could also be included in his life, a resurrection life, a far better life than people ever lived on their own.

So, all of us on this Earth, regardless of our background, culture, economic status or place of origin, are either in the SAME BOAT heading towards destruction or we are in the SAME BOAT working to rescue those who do not know or understand. Ephesians 2:1-6 (Message Bible) puts it in another way:

It wasn't so long ago that you were mired in that old stagnant life of sin. You let the world, which doesn't know the first thing about living, tell you how to live. You filled your lungs with polluted unbelief, and then exhaled disobedience. We all did it, all of us doing what we felt like doing, when we felt like doing it, all of us in the SAME BOAT. It's a wonder God didn't lose his temper and do away with the whole lot of us. Instead, immense in mercy and with an incredible love, he embraced us. He took our sin-dead lives and made us alive in Christ. He did all this on his own, with no help from us! Then he picked us up and set us down in highest heaven in company with Jesus, our Messiah.

Note: I want to thank Denise Isaac from the Everything Jesus Ranch near Seguin, Texas, for helping connect the dots and come up with the name, Same Boat Ministries.