It happened in Tokyo in 1991. The world record for the longest jump was broken! America’s superb athletes Carl Lewis and Mike Powell were the stars.
In the first round of the Long Jump competition Carl Lewis (on the left) took the lead jumping 28 feet, 5.75 inches. Mike Powell came out on top in the 2nd round at 28 feet, .25 inches. Aided by the wind, Carl Lewis jumped back in the 3rd round for a 28 foot, 11.75 inch jump.
But the next two rounds were led by Powell (on the right). 29 feet, 2.75 inches and then the incredible monster jump of 29 feet, 4.5 inches. That was on August 30, 1991. Mike Powell still holds the world record for the longest human jump ever recorded.
But let’s suppose another competition was held at the world famous Grand Canyon. The site is Lipan Point where the Canyon is 1 mile deep and 18 miles wide. Mike Powell and Carl Lewis agree to participate. Together they stand at the breath-taking precipice. Their stomachs churn as they peer down 1 mile into the Canyon. Quite a drop. They look across – 18 miles is quite a distance. But they are the very best long jumpers in the world. If anyone can do it, they can!
Carl Lewis pumped for the jump, runs and with incredible power, pushes his legs off the side of the Canyon catapulting through the air with the wind on his back. 28 feet, 5.75 inches! That was his best.
The world record holder Mike Powell stands still, closes his eyes and envisions his body flying through the air across the Canyon to the other side. With intensity and focus Powell takes his turn. Like a bullet he goes into the air. The distance? 29 feet, 4.5 inches. His very best! Yes, he made it further than Lewis – but they both fell short of the distance of 18 miles.
If this was a true story, both runners would have perished.
They were the very best. The top performers in the long jump category. One made it a little further than the other, but neither of them had what it took to span the distance.
There is a wider and deeper canyon between sinners and God. There is a ‘great divide’ between humans and their Creator. The canyon was caused by the cataclysmic fall of man in the Garden of Eden when Adam rebelled against God.
The best equipped and most outstanding good person on earth is not able to make it across the chasm – the distance is too great. Sin has caused a divide that none of us can bridge. No matter how many good things we do, or how sincere we are or how religious our life may be – the Bible says even the best falls short.
For all have sinned and come short of the Glory of God.”
Because of our inner sin, none of us have what it takes to get across. We will perish if we try to get across ourselves. The Lord Jesus Christ is the only way across. He died for our sins. He dealt with the barrier of our sins. “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the Just for the unjust that He might bring us to God.” 1 Peter 3:18
Look at the simple illustration below and rest on the profound truth of the well-known Bible verse found in Romans chapter 6 and verse 23: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Originally posted: November 2007