World’s Largest Paperclip, Bell Park, Kipling, Saskatchewan, Canada.
Photo by purecanucks on Flickr. CC BY-2.0

Did you hear about the guy who traded a paperclip for a house?

It’s a little more involved than that, but it really happened.

Over the course of a year starting in 2005, Canadian Kyle MacDonald made a series of 14 online trades, bartering small items for successively larger and more valuable ones.

He started with a red paperclip, which he traded for a pen. He swapped the pen for a doorknob, which he then bartered for a Coleman stove.

The stove was flipped for a generator, which was exchanged for an instant party, which he soon traded for a snowmobile.

Kyle’s next transactions involved a trip, a truck, a recording contract, and a year’s rent in Phoenix. They eventually culminated in a film role, which was traded for a two-storey farmhouse in Kipling, Saskatchewan.

A large sculpture of a red paperclip now stands in the small Canadian town where his trades ended, commemorating his achievement.

Pretty impressive, I must say!

But I can think of an even more astonishing swap.

It took only one transaction and involved the most valuable thing of all…

…forgiveness of our sins.

When Jesus died on the Cross, He got what we deserved—death for our sins.

“He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God.” (Romans 4:25)

When we believe in His atoning sacrifice, we get His righteousness in return. Our sins are no longer imputed to us.

“He personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right.” (1 Peter 2:24a)

In one fell swoop, Jesus swapped his righteousness for our unrighteousness.

“For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.” (2 Corinthians 5:21)

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

What is the end result of this exchange?

“…so that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life.” (John 3:15)

This is truly mind-blowing!

God set up the most incredible swap in history: Christ bore all our guilt and sin, and in return we are clothed with His perfect righteousness.

I think we’re getting the better end of the deal: what we get for free cost Jesus everything.

God gives us the opportunity to have our sins washed away and to spend eternity with Him. All we have to do for our end of the bargain is to believe in His Son Jesus.

How could you not want to take Him up on this offer?

It’s the best swap of all!

© 2021 Lori J. Cartmell. All rights reserved.

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