An Analogy of the Gospel and Chess

There have been other analogies between the Gospel and chess, but I think I have had some unique insights to add that I hope you can enjoy and relate to.

In this analogy God is playing a game of chess against Satan that has some unique twists.  In this analogy the pieces are human beings who are children of God, who do not necessarily do what either player wants them to do.  I know this is unusual to the point of saying that this is no longer chess, but I hope you can hear this out.

This game is not so objective as an actual game of chess.  In this game, the pieces that usually do what God wants them to do are God’s white pieces.  The pieces that almost always do what God desires are almost perfectly white, while the pieces that sometimes follow God’s will, and sometimes do their own thing, are some shade of grey.  The black pieces are similar, in that they do not always do what Satan wishes either.  Some of these pieces are quite black, while others are a shade of dark grey.

This game can be somewhat subjective, in that the outcome of the game is not necessarily known.  The outcome partially depends on the pieces.  These pieces, that have a will of their own, can be frustrating for both players.  If all things were equal, and the pieces always did what they were told, God would surely win as the superior player.  But the pieces themselves cannot be counted on to always move as the players desire.

At this point, a reader might object by saying that this analogy is flawed because God must always win.  But God knows a secret about this inconsistent and subjective game.  He knows that the details of the game, and even the result itself, does not matter.  What really matters is what color the individual pieces are.

One may well ask how the atonement of Christ fits in with this.  The atonement is what allows pieces to become entirely white!  In this unique chess game, the pieces can change colors.  The temptations of Satan, and the influence of the dark pieces, can cause a white piece to rebel against Gods commands and by so doing become a darker piece.  Such a piece might even change sides if the rebellion goes far enough.  Similarly, the atonement of Christ can cause the dark pieces, and even those who became black, to become white.

Regardless of the outcome of this confusing and unique game, because of the whitening power of the atonement, the pieces that end up white will be gathered up by God.  These pieces will be part of God’s nice tournament chess set, for when God needs to have pieces he can rely on.  In time these white pieces can even become chess players themselves, and not merely pieces on a board.

The grey pieces will be placed in a bag, and sometimes used as a practice set for working out different openings and such, but will not be used in serious tournament games.  These pieces will likely never become chess players, but will remain chess pieces.

The black pieces may be left out of God’s set altogether, with the mistaken notion that it was only a game all along.  Such pieces will never know the thrill of developing a solid pawn structure, of placing a knight on a protected spot near the center of the board, of creating open diagonals for bishops, and open files for rooks.  These pieces are doomed to be isolated pawns in a game controlled by powers they cannot perceive.

Does this analogy ring true for you?  Are there ways to improve it?

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2 Responses to “An Analogy of the Gospel and Chess”


  1. 1 billschwan March 11, 2017 at 10:29 am

    We are considering using chess as a way of helping the gospel to infiltrate our local high school. These are good insights and thanks for sharing them. We may make use of some of them.

  2. 2 Eric Nielson March 15, 2017 at 7:58 am

    I am glad you liked it. Use it however you wish.


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