Devotional: August 22nd
What is it that attaches worth to an object? In "Raiders of the Lost Ark," the first of the Indiana Jones movies, Jones is talking with his adversary, Dr. Rene Belloq, who wistfully comments that his watch is worthless unless he buries it in the dirt for a hundred years and then it is valuable. Then it becomes an artifact of the age in which it existed. It lends itself to explaining the people of that age through their inventions. Worth is not necessarily objective, but curiously subjective.
My collection of Ohio State University memorabilia has a dollar value based on the purchased price of each item. However, its true worth is based on my love for OSU and the Buckeyes and thus removes it from the arena of objectivity and makes it solely subjective. Conversely, if it all fell into the hands of a lover of the University of Michigan Wolverines it would be found the next day in a herbie sitting at the curb awaiting removal by the local Department of Sanitation.
Couples recently married and sorting through the mélange of materials which each has assembled over the years prior to their union have struggled with which items to pitch and toss as they prepare for life together. Old love letters might have some worth for the spouse who received them. However, if they weren't written by the current spouse they might be best dealt with by a match to the whole bundle. Shared worth becomes important in such instances.
Enter the kingdom of God. How much worth is assigned a building and grounds? My home church is celebrating its 50th anniversary in a few weeks. The church building in which they currently meet was built around 1963. Some folks might not place much worth in a forty year old church building and think it could be torn down and another erected in its place. However, I remember the stone on the front of that building being cut by two elderly gentlemen who bonded a friendship as they labored together. Herb Milleson and my grandfather, Ora Kelley, cut that stone together. That stone has a worth with me that it probably does not possess with many others.
God's kingdom places a worth on people that is not subjective. "For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:6-8 The worth of people is set in stone. It is not challengeable. It is not arguable. It is not subjective. People have value regardless of how we see them. God set the worth of people as the blood of His own Son.
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