The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"Poverty and Riches"
"For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich" (II Corinthians 8:9).
Our weekly memory verse references the Lord Jesus Christ becoming "poor" for our sakes, so that we might be made "rich" in Him. How poor did He become in His earthly experience from womb to tomb, which made possible our reception by grace of "the unsearchable riches of Christ?" (Ephesians 3:8).
First, to measure our Lord's poverty requires awareness of the wealth He sacrificed by becoming human.
"The earth is the LORD's, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein" (Psalm 24:1).
From being "the Possessor of heaven and earth" to experiencing an earthly, human lifetime wherein "the Son of man hath not where to lay His head" provides some sense of the sacrifice (Genesis 14:19; Matthew 8:20). What would this have meant in the heart and life of the Lord Jesus? No one knows because only our Savior has made such a sacrifice. Of course, every human being loses things. Loss supplies a significant part of that which defines our lives and experience. The Apostle Paul testified he had "suffered the loss of all things" (Philippians 3:8). However, Paul would be the first to confess that his loss paled in comparison to the sacrifice of Christ. We do well to ponder this when considering the cost of our salvation, which even eternity will never fully reveal to us. As the hymnwriter beautifully penned, "But none of the ransomed ever knew how deep were the waters crossed, nor how dark was the night the Lord passed through e're He found His sheep that was lost."
Knowing that we cannot fully comprehend the loss makes appreciation of our gain all the more realized and meaningful. The Possessor of all sacrificed all so that He might bestow "exceeding, abundantly above all we ask or think" to those who believe and receive His saving grace (Ephesians 3:20). Other than growing appreciation and gratitude, the best we can do to requite such abundance is to avail ourselves of it in growing reception of grace whereby we live in a manner that honors the Lord Jesus and the sacrifice He made for us. "Let us have grace, that we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and godly fear" (Hebrews 12:28). Loss is gain in God's economy, as revealed in the Christ who exchanged untold riches for the poverty that made possible the freely given abundance that leads to our own lives of loving sacrifice for God and others…
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ."
"Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ."
"But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ."
Weekly Memory Verse
For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich."
(II Corinthians 8:9)