Calvin Ball

The cartoon strip, Calvin and Hobbes, introduced a game played by the boy called Calvin Ball. It sounds a lot like the games adults play when they don’t like the way things seem to be going for them. In Calvin’s version, if it seems he is about to lose a game, he merely changes the rules to favor himself so as to win. In this version, the rules can be changed any time he chooses but his opponent is never allowed a similar option. Needless to say, such games usually end prematurely by the opponent who is furious over the unfair rule changes.

It seems a lot of people are playing Calvin Ball and have deluded themselves to think that they will win. They have decided that they don’t like the rules of the game of life and think that they can change any rule that conflicts with their desires. They play the games as though their rules now apply and will be accepted when the outcome of the game is judged. It’s amazing that they think they can persuade the judge to rule in their favor and that he will accept the rule changes even though those changes are contrary to the standard set for the game.

Some players have decided that one way to get the judge to rule in their favor is by gathering many other people together to demonstrate against the old rules and to demand that the government support them. So we see parades in support of change and news reporters questioning the value of the old rules. By democratic vote, the people change the rules of the land declaring the old rules as obsolete and not relevant for this time and culture.

The role of the judge is now questioned and it has been decided by the people that he has no power or authority to rule against the new rules. The judge is attacked and it is suggested that he doesn’t even exist. If there is no judge, then each person should live and do as they please with no worries about a judge. The old rules are disregarded and new rules are taught as though it is a simple matter to make the game more relevant to the majority of players.

Players who still play by the old rules are mocked and threatened and some even killed because they do not conform to the new rules. The people who promote the new rules say that there should be tolerance and acceptance of all who play by the new rules yet they show no tolerance or acceptance of people still playing by the old rules.

You likely understand this analogy but for those who missed it, here are the definitions: The judge is God. He has set His rules for us to live by in the Scriptures, also called the Bible. The Judge is eternal, without beginning or end, and He is unchanging. The rules He has established for people on earth are not changed to suit the evil desires of mankind. God sent Jesus Christ to earth to be born into a physical body, to teach and demonstrate the rules of the Kingdom of God, and to die on a cross and be resurrected to redeem people under the curse of Satan. Jesus Christ has been granted all rule and authority over the earth and he will judge all people at the end of time by the rules God established long ago. Mankind’s attempts to change the rules are futile and only lead to certain failure before the Judge.

The new rules are changes to the instructions in the Bible. Some have tried to reinterpret the rules to a new cultural relevance but in doing so, many of the changes are actually diametrically opposed to God’s clear instruction. What God has called evil, some call good. Even local churches which have the appearance of representing God to man have been deceived and try to cater to a declining audience by adjusting their theology to make it pleasing to our current culture of sin.

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life (Galatians 6:7-8).

Therefore, at the end of your life on earth when you stand before the Judge, will you stand as member of the Kingdom of God having obeyed God’s rules, or will you stand with the rebellious and arrogant who allowed no place for God in their lives? Those who subjected themselves to God’s rule will enjoy eternal life; those who disregarded God’s rules and lived by their own will face eternal separation and punishment. Playing by your own rules will be deadly.