All the Treasures
A now familiar expression has worked its way into the parlance of our time. It is usually used to describe the fulfillment of the desires of the achiever who is working toward the day when he will be rich and famous. The expression is called, â€śhaving it all.â€ť The ambitious man of our world looks forward to the day when his combined accumulations of fame, fortune, possessions will mean that he is looked upon as â€śhaving it all.â€ť
How many stories of the lives of people have turned into the sad account of a bright beginner who ends up in the ditch next to the road of life! He traveled too fast and ran out beyond any guidance that was available to him. In pursuit of the ambition of having it all, he ended up with nothing. â€śYou can have it all in this worldâ€ť is the voice of the serpent. It was heard first by Eve in the Garden of Eden and went on from there to rule the world.
When, however, we think a little further, we notice that we have the promise of a great treasure which includes everything that matters. The Bible, speaking about Jesus Christ, says, â€śIn whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledgeâ€ť (Col. 2:3). Yes, contrary to the lying beguilements of this world, all the treasures are available to the Christian. The believer, united to Jesus Christ, is inseparably connected with the One in whom is hidden every treasure imaginable. â€śAll the treasures of wisdom and knowledgeâ€ť is really a very spacious expression. We can be encouraged by thinking of just some of those treasures which belong to us because we belong to Christ.
1. The treasure of salvation. The person who believes the Gospel of Jesus Christ has now been reconciled to God â€śin the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy and unblamable and unreprovable in His sightâ€ť (Col. 1:22). Jesus Christ, by His death on Calvaryâ€™s cross, has promised to us that, having believed in Him, we will one day be presented to God holy, unblamable and unreprovable. The Christian is the possessor of imputed righteousness, and nothing can be laid to his charge whatsoever. He has perfect standing, complete salvation in the sight of God.
What makes this salvation a great treasure is that it is eternal salvation. It is valuable beyond measure because it never can be taken from us. How sad that theâ€śsalvationâ€ť in which many Christians believe is frothy and flighty and can disappear in a momentâ€™s notice. This is not a treasure, nor is it salvation at all.
2. Sanctification. The person who believes the Gospel has eternal salvation, but also he is set apart eternally to fulfill the purpose of God in his life. It is already true about us that God â€śhas raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesusâ€ť (Eph. 2:6,7). Amazingly, the Christian already has a firm and confirmed reservation. Itâ€™s as if he were already in heaven, seated with Christ. That is what we joyously call â€śpositional sanctification.â€ť
3. Wisdom. The treasure of wisdom is ours in Jesus Christ. Here we have a commodity of value so immense that it cannot be measured. Because there is such an infinite repository of wisdom with God, James is able to say, â€śIf any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that gives to all men liberally, and upbraids not; and it shall be given himâ€ť (James 1:5). Foolishness, therefore, is not a Christian trait and should be pursued by no believer.
Let us suggest that there are at least two kinds of wisdom which we should desire, one is academic and the other is practical. The wisdom that comes from schooling is marvelously helpful in understanding deeper things. The wisdom that comes from experience enables us to carry on in real life. Both forms of this wonderful thing called wisdom come to us with the compliments of Jesus Christ Himself.
4. Knowledge. This inexhaustible treasure also is hidden in Jesus Christ and comes to us with His compliments. We suggest that there is, first of all, that most necessary knowledge, the knowledge of God. We could really know little about God were it not for the Revelation of Jesus Christ. Nature teaches us of the power of God but tells us, in its capriciousness, little about His love. Jesus Christ, in His person and in His work on the cross, reveals a God who loved us enough to die for us.
In Christ, we also have the knowledge of holy things. One of the grievous problems of our generation is that it is so gross and insensate that nothing is holy. The culture is without discernment and this is a condition that is not likely to change, apart from the wide dissemination of the knowledge of God. For our world, nothing is good, nothing is bad, nothing is praiseworthyall this because of the lack of the knowledge of holy things.
5. Friendship. The Bible announces that the believer is â€śin Christâ€ť and also makes clear that Christ is in the believer. Therefore, we who know the Lord Jesus have a way of becoming instant friends with one another. The world knows nothing of what we understand by â€śthe fellowship of the saints,â€ť but we surely do. This is because, whatever our status in life, we have been united in the Lord Jesus. We are friends of God and the treasured corollary of this relationship is that we are friends with one another.
We note that Paul has told us of our unity in Jesus Christ, â€ślest any man should beguile you with enticing wordsâ€ť (Col. 2:4). The implication is that when we have Christ, that we have the best that there is. There is nothing better, nothing more beautiful, nothing in the world more wonderful than Jesus Christ Himself. Indeed, the essence of Christianity is not its dogmas, but rather the person who stands behind it all.
How wonderful that we are promised that we are a part of the kingdom of Godâ€™s dear Son, â€śin whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creatureâ€ť (Col. 1:14,15).
Yes, Jesus Christ is the one in whom all fullness dwells (Col. 1:19). I am His and He is mine.
It is time for each one of us to believe this marvelous truth once again with a total of our faith. The Christian community of our time has a hundred denominations and a thousand programs. All of these things, however, are not to be compared with our association with Jesus Christ, in whom dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. It is, therefore, time to rejoice and to redouble our efforts for Christ that the world may know of Him. Before He comes again, may this be our great commitment.
Destiny Newsletter continued