The Hunger Games–An Unpaid Debt

I will have finished all of the Hunger Games books by the time I leave for my mission trip to Mexico tomorrow morning. Right now, that has one stark implication: I have to find something else to read on the road to Mexico City. And it’ll have to be good to follow Suzanne Collins.

As I’ve been reading Collins’ riveting trilogy, I’ve also been brushing up on a much more important, true story: the basics of the Gospel.

Interestingly, woven throughout The Hunger Games series is a thread of recompense that holds all the characters together. The theme of debt and repayment form a vital part of the plot and the characters’ lives. And deaths.

At first, Katniss owes Peeta for taking a beating to give her the bread that saves her life.

Later, she owes Peeta for saving her life in the arena. Later, she owes Finnick for saving Peeta after he comes into contact with the force field.

As Katniss works to escape from this debt to others, she falls into circumstances that domino into an entire rebellion–thousands of citizens dying more or less for her.

Because of her.

She’ll never be able to escape that kind of debt.

Sort of like I’ll never be able to escape the debt to the One who never did wrong yet died a most humiliating, painful death on the cross. For me. Because if a sinless substitute–God’s Son–hadn’t taken my place, I would be spending an eternity in hell, starting now.

I’ll never be even with God. I couldn’t die a thousand deaths to make up for what He’s given me. Just like Katniss couldn’t truly make up for the deaths of thousands by putting an arrow through the heart of President Snow.

And…. you know what? My very inequality with God is what makes Him trustworthy.

Because I could never trust a God to whom I don’t owe more than I can pay.

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