(Part 2 of 2)
After recently bashing the Parable of the Bicycle I figured it was only fair that I expose myself to some bashing in return. Here is an attempt at another analogy that I am formulating basically on the fly.
In this analogy we are adult children of a loving father. We want a home (mansion?) that is basically the equivalent of the home he has. He wants us to own the home in the same way he owns his. (I am assuming he paid for his and wants us to do the same). In order to purchase the home a plan is formulated that requires us to take on a large mortgage and to take a 24/7 job (that requires us to remain on the road) in order to make the payments. We agree to the plan.
The money we are making at our new job is not even sufficient to pay the interest on the mortgage for this new home. Based on our monthly payments we are in fact not purchasing the home but rather falling deeper into debt and further from ownership every moment. This is when our father steps in as planned from the beginning. He (and/or perhaps an elder brother that is making the final payment on his mansion?) steps in and generously agrees to cover the interest portion of our mortgage for us if we agree to put the rest into the principal. He will keep the debtors at bay if we agree to put all of our efforts into owning more and more of the house. We cannot buy lots of other desirable or tempting things in this process though; we must focus all of our resources on this goal. By paying the interest portion of the loan for us, our benefactor saves us from perpetually falling deeper into debt. It is up to us to utilize this interest-payment-offer to its fullest (and it really is a sweetheart deal) and knock out as much of the principal as we possibly can while the deal still lasts.
The home is exaltation, the job on the road is our probationary state(s), God is the benefactor, and justice/eternal law is the bank. This particular special deal lasts for as long as we live on this earth.
Now how the deal works after our physical death is not so clear to me. But it seems to me that this analogy is a closer representation of what we are dealing with when we discuss the atonement than the bicycle parable (though I tried to keep it similar). The debt is huge and most of us will still have a lot of principal to pay by the time we leave this mortality. I feel fairly certain that we will need to keep working on it for as long as it takes if we, like Christ, are to ever finish the job. I also suspect that we can in moments of weakness move backwards in this process and add extra debts (but even then our benefactor will be willing to help out under his debt consolidation plan). It surely is not an easy task to pay for this mansion even with the shockingly generous interest-payment deal we are offered.
But what else should we expect? Exaltation is not cheap.
(Note – Edits have been made based on constructive criticism in the comments)