Original Posting At https://revbrentwhite.com/2017/06/24/one-more-thought-on-wonderful-life/
Please see my previous post if you haven’t already.
In the last minute of It’s a Wonderful Life, George Bailey seemingly gets the happy ending that he thought he deserved earlier in the film: grateful townspeople, former classmates, and even his younger brother express their gratitude and love to him in heartfelt, tangible ways.
But not so fast…
In the clip above, George’s salvation comes before that last minute—as evidenced by his elation at the prospect of going to jail. When the sheriff tells him he has a paper for him, George says, “I bet it’s a warrant for my arrest. Isn’t it wonderful? I’m going to jail!”
As far as George knows, something far worse than hating his job or “playing nursemaid to a lot of garlic eaters” has befallen him. Yet how does he respond? Wth pure joy. Like the younger son in the parable, George has passed from death to life.
The fact that his friends saved him from prison was good, but his true salvation happened before that.
It’s hard not to think of Paul’s words in Philippians 3:8:
I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ.