Saturday, June 21, 2008

Greatest treasure and reward

My study on Acts has so far taken me to Chapter 3. The account begins with the lame man begging at the gate of the temple (Acts 3:2). As Peter and John are about to enter the gate, the man sees the two apostles.

Here we see Peter and John's changed hearts. Instead of hurrying past him (as most of us are prone to do these days, whenever kids in Philcoa ask us for alms), they take notice of him and say, "Look at us" (verse 4). They saw, not only his physical, but moreso, his spiritual needs. Under any normal circumstances in the past, they wouldn't do this, of course, but the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4) transformed their hearts.

Expecting monetary gifts, the lame man looks at Peter and John. At this point, Peter would say something that would absolutely shock him, words that would change his life forever.

Peter says (Acts 3:6):

Silver and gold, I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.

Then Peter lifts him up. He feels his feet and ankle bones receiving strength. For the first time in his life (for he was born lame [verse 2]), he can walk. He leaps with joy, praising God.

Peter's words stabbed me to the heart. He didn't have earthly possessions to boast of, as he claimed, "Silver and gold I do not have."

And yet he had so much more. "What I do have I give you."

What was his most prized possession?

It was knowing Christ. His fellowship and communion with Christ were his joy and reward. And he had nothing else to give but the good news that, like him, the lame man could experience the same joy in Christ's presence.

This passage reminds me of that song (Knowing You) from years ago:

Knowing You, Jesus, knowing You
There is no greater thing.

I suppose all our problems in life will be easier to bear when we truly understand that Christ is in us; He is our greatest treasure.



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