The Pearl of Great Price Is – YOU!

In Matthew 13.44-46, Jesus said, “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it.”

I have always read this parable to mean that the kingdom of God is so valuable that I should be willing to sell everything and give everything up in order to get into the Kingdom. That is the reading that makes the most sense to me and I think it is one thing Jesus meant.

But I was just reading an email from a friend who is a missionary in – well, in a country that doesn’t allow them. Let’s leave it at that. Anyway, she wrote about dealing with this person who was irritating her but was also in need. God spoke to her clearly (I keep telling you this happens) and told my friend, “As irritating as that person is to you, to Me he is a pearl and I am willing to sell everything to get him for Myself.”

My friend thought (and I agree) that the Lord was alluding to these parables of Jesus, infusing them with a different, yet complementary meaning to what we normally make of them. The Kingdom of God is our pearl of great price, but at the same time we are God’s pearl of great price. We are called to give up everything to get the kingdom because this is precisely what God has done to get us into the Kingdom. The incarnation, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ is God selling everything He has – betting the farm – in order to get the pearl of great price, which is each of us.

You are God’s pearl of great price. You are the Lord’s priceless treasure.

This reminds me of the great love stories, where both parties risk everything, endure great hardships, face whatever comes, in order to be together. The love and passion they have for each other trumps every obstacle. They both view the other as the ultimate treasure they are willing to do anything to get.

This is how God thinks of you, this is how God feels about you, this is how God acts toward you.

Is it also how you think of/feel about/act toward God?

God’s creative command

Read this familiar passage and take note of the creative and commanding characteristics of what God says (the first time God ever spoke to humans):

Gen. 1.26-31

26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

27 So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.

28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” 29 And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food. 30 And to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the heavens and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. 31 And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.

Whenever I read Genesis 1, I am always struck by how all the creation occurs because “God said.” God does a lot of talking in Gen. 1 and something always happens when he speaks. Note that the very first thing God does after making Adam and Eve is speak to them, directly to them. It is the first instance of “you” (the second person personal pronoun for all the grammarians out there) in the Bible and it comes when the Creator God enters into direct communication with the only part of his creation that he breathes his own Life into (see Gen. 2.7). This demonstrates that God communicating directly with humans is a normal part of our created existence, something to be expected.

Also note the nature of what God says to them: God’s speech to them is creative just as it has been throughout this chapter, creating a state of blessing and responsibility for them. Is God’s speech always in this command/creation mode? We already know that we need to be listening for God to speak to us; perhaps we also need to learn that when God speaks into our lives, his speech may very well come creating and commanding.

What do you think? Has God spoken to you lately? Are you listening? What is the Lord creating in your life? What is God commanding you to do? Are you willing to hear his creative command and obey?

It can be encouraging to share with others what the Lord has said to you. It reaffirms the word to the one who heard and it encourages others to listen and not think they’re crazy when God speaks to them. So share in the comments below.