Matins Devotion: October 17, 2023
What is the explanation of these two mini-parables at the beginning of our reading from Matthew today? The parable of the treasure in the field and the pearl of great value, what are they teaching us? Is this a promise of how Christ’s love for us is so great that He gave up everything He had to make us His own? Is this a command to give up everything we have to possess the treasure of His righteousness? Or is it both? Well, to complicate things a little further, I’d say the answer is not exactly “both,” but “first one, then the other.”
When we were lost, buried and hidden in this world of sin, Jesus found us. The Son of God came into the flesh and discovered us. And when He looked at us, He didn’t see us as we were, but as we would be. He loved us through our sin and vowed to make us pure and perfect forever. So He sold everything He had to make us His own. He gave up the breath from His lungs, the blood from His veins, the beating from His heart. From the cross, Christ looked out at His precious field, at this pearl of great value, and He used the currency of His holy precious blood, His innocent suffering and death to buy us out of condemnation and to mark us with His name.
And because of this, then we can now do likewise. Because Christ first loved us, now we can love Him in return. Now we can give up everything we have to hold fast to the treasure of His righteousness. Now we can sell our greed and use the proceeds to support the preaching of the Gospel. Now we can sell our pride and give forgiveness to those who have hated us, showing them the mercy of Christ. Now we can sell every idol that competes for our time and our hearts to hear God’s word, to rejoice in His promises. Now we can sell our reputations, our blood and our very lives, if persecution demands it, to belong to Him.
The kingdom of heaven is the Savior giving up everything to make us His own forever. And then the kingdom of heaven is you giving up everything to be His own in return.