Since its launch, The Biggest Loser TV show has captured the heart of millions of TV viewers in America and beyond. The Biggest Loser show has helped people to eat healthy and to live a healthy lifestyle. The show also shows that living a healthy life is very possible, for reversing the unhealthy lifestyle has also been proven successful through the show. The show’s participants work very hard to lose their weight. They face difficult challenges and temptations. They learn to be disciplined in every aspect of their lives. And since their weakest spot is food, they are expected to master their will and thus change their habits. As the reality show The Biggest Loser has sparked many Americans to save their lives from obesity, there is an ancient but still relevant truth that saves lives to the very core. The ancient truth of salvation revealed by God through his one and only Son, Jesus Christ, has saved billions of people from the dreadful reality of the true death.
If the secret in The Biggest Loser show is eat healthy and right exercise, then the ancient secret of salvation is to believe in Jesus Christ. As in The Biggest Loser show people win by losing weight, in the secret of salvation people win by losing their old self. “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:22-24). In the show, people can lose weight when they trust their trainers. In salvation, people lose the old self by believing the Messiah, Jesus Christ. As The Biggest Loser participants lose their weight progressively, they don’t intend to go back to their old size. The same goes with the saved people in Jesus Christ, after they lost their old self, they don’t want to go back to be who they were before.
Losing weight asks so much of oneself, how much more losing the self. If there is nothing better to replace the self, one would never let go of it. If the show’s participants don’t believe that their new self after losing weight is much better than their old self, they would not go through all the toil and pain of rigorous discipline. In the same way, if one does not believe that the new self in Jesus Christ is going to be much better than the old self, one would not put off the old self. The key secret is faith. People tend to lay their belief on evidence and reason than on faith. The remark “Seeing is Believing” has been hailed as the fundamental norm of life in our modern society today. But Jesus said: “blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” (John 20:29).
Let me tell you the greatest secret to become the biggest loser in life. The biggest losers are those who believe in Jesus Christ. This knowledge penetrates beyond our earthly existence. This secret points to eternity. The biggest losers in life are those who lose their old sinful self and gain the new holy image in Jesus Christ. And the only way to be the biggest loser in life is through Jesus Christ. For Jesus himself claimed: "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" (John 14:6).
The difference between becoming the biggest loser in life and the biggest loser in the popular reality TV show is work. In the show, the participants must work very hard in order to lose weight and gain their new image. In life, the saved can’t work for the promised salvation. “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). In the show, the work comes before, while in life the work comes after. “For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10). After we are saved in Christ by grace, then we can work. In life, after we accept the new image, then we work to trim the old self, and since we have lost it, then we don’t feel hard to throw the old self away. The Apostle Paul points out:
“But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.” (Philippians 3:7-9)
The old self is rubbish. We don’t need to keep rubbish. Even in our earthly life we don’t keep rubbish. We throw away rubbish in the garbage can. Why would we want to keep rubbish in our spiritual life? Keeping rubbish in our spiritual life won’t make any sense. However, having said that, I realize that not many people would think that their old sinful self is rubbish. Not all people would think that they need to lose the old self. In the show, only those that are overweight would readily admit that they need to lose weight. In life, admitting one’s sin requires great humility, how much more admitting that our old self is rubbish.
Now, let me tell you the greatest of the greatest secret to become the biggest loser in life. The greatest of the greatest secret is Jesus Christ himself. The link of the transformation of one’s life, from old to new, is Jesus. If the link is missing, then the entire world is doomed. Without Jesus our life is utterly meaningless. Without Jesus everything we do would be of no value. If we want to be the biggest loser in life, then we need to embrace the only one person that can transform our lives, as Peter has proclaimed:
“It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. He is " 'the stone you builders rejected, which has become the capstone.’ Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”
* The Business of Christian Education VII
* The Business of Christian Education VII