e-Treasure

13 April 2007

Why Treasure Christ?

Shane,

Give me your feedback on this. What would you add? What would you restate? What order would you have these in? Please give me your insight!

"5For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. 6For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 7But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us." (2 Corinthians 4:5-7 ESV).

We treasure Christ because of His Divinity—God of very God. God has created everything for His own glory, including the universe and us. He created us to glorify Him by enjoying Him.

We treasure Christ because of His humanity in humbling himself to come in the form of man, living an absolutely perfect life, and being born of a virgin.

We treasure Christ because of His power to create a universe, uphold a universe by the might of His word, and perform mighty miracles.

We treasure Christ because of His obedience to keep His covenant, fulfill His law, perform His righteousness, and impute an alien righteousness to His people.

We treasure Christ because of His ministry to speak words of eternal life, send the Holy Spirit, and manifest the glory of the Father in His face.

We treasure Christ because of His death to bear the wrath of God, satisfy the justice of God, and atone for the sin of the Church.

We treasure Christ because of His resurrection to defeat death, destroy the devil, and open heaven.

We treasure Christ because of His reign at the Father’s right hand to be sovereign, interceding, ever present, triumphant, and never leaving us alone.

We treasure Christ because in all of this He is the fountain for all of our joy in God.

We treasure Christ because a superior joy in him is the key to severing the love of money, love of consumerism, and love of this world.

We want you to treasure Christ because our enjoyment of Christ will only be completed when we praise Him and call others to praise Him as well.

4 Comments:

  • Great job, Elijah! Well laid out. To offer suggestion, for what it's worth, perhaps you could build a little more on theme of the passage where the Lord in creative power speaks a new creation - bursting forth and shattering our dead and stony hearts with the light of the gospel - our Lord Himself!
    The only other thing that caused me to stop reflection on the wonder of Christ was the point on his obedience (some of which seemed to relate more to a system of theology than direct reference to clear texts - which wseemed different from all your other points). So I got a little confused by what was actually said there.
    The post as a whole really provides reason and motive to treasure Christ above all!

    Thanks.

    By Blogger Murray, At 2:20 am  

  • Thanks Murray. I'll keep laboring on it.

    By Blogger K. Elijah Layfield, At 2:50 am  

  • Murray, what if we say, "We treasure Christ because of His obedience to the Father to keep His covenant, fulfill His law, perform His righteousness, and impute His own righteousness to the Church."

    If it's still confusing, let me know which part or parts. I might just need insight to how my system of theology is shaping my thoughts.

    By Blogger K. Elijah Layfield, At 4:39 am  

  • Hi Elijah,

    I love it! I'd like to use the final product on my fellowship site (with permission). Overall it is excellent and I really appreciate the article.

    Here's some thoughts:

    Firstly, I'd change the order, from starting with the attributes of Christ, to starting with the work of Christ on our behalf. I suggest this not because of a greater significance of his work over his attributes. Certainly Christ is worthy of treasuring simply for who he is before considering his work.

    The reason is the logical priority of reconciliation with Christ first to enable us to then treasure His attributes. A magnificent, righteous and conquering King is to feared by the unrighteous ones in His path. When He tracks us down with sceptre in one hand we can only truly treasure Him when we first freely receive the pardon He carries in His other hand! Oh what joy to my heart, as a former traitor to Christ guilty of treason, to now hold that pardon in my hand, stand forgiven before him, and gaze at his glory as the all powerful and conquering King!


    Secondly, some thoughts / suggestions off top of head, and some minor points (and there may be a bit of overlap):

    - We treasure Christ because through Jesus Christ God the Father now treasures us and values us as his own treasured possession.

    - We treasure Christ because towards us he is loving and good. He serves us willingly, although there is nothing naturally desirable or worthy in us, but rather he serves out of the abundant goodness flowing from His own loving heart.

    - We treasure Christ because he is altogether treasurable. All that is to be considered praiseworthy and morally desirable in the character of a person is to be found in Christ alone. As a person He is perfect and glorious without flaw even though he has been tested, tried and tempted above all.

    - We treasure Christ because he gives us a renewed mind to behold the beauty and sweetness of the ways of God, a new heart to incline us to walk in those ways with joy, and assurance of his abiding love and forgiveness when we stumble.

    - Where you speak of the humanity of Christ, I'd place "being born of a virgin" immediately after "humbling himself to come in the form of a man". This preserves the chronology.

    - The last paragraph needs to flow a bit smoother. I suggest replacing the second "we" in the sentence with ". . you join us to . ." (or something like that).


    Thirdly, I think Murray is correct regarding your paragraph on His obedience and His covenant. The statement assumes a certain understanding and agreement on the part of the audience, of the underlying theology, that is not required to embrace the other statements. (Of course, this depends on your target audience.)

    Here are some articles that may be of interest (and perhaps Murray had some of these issues in mind):

    Is there a Covenant of Grace? by Jon Zens
    http://solochristo.com/theology/nct/covofgrace.htm

    Is there a Covenant of Redemption? by Steve Lehrer.
    http://solochristo.com/theology/nct/NCTQA/NCTQA_02_IsThereACovOfRedemption.pdf
    Did God make a Covenant Of Works with Adam In The Garden?
    http://solochristo.com/theology/nct/NCTQA/NCTQA_03_CovenantOfWorksWithAdam.pdf

    It's not clear from your statement which covenant and law you have in mind. Are you speaking of the New Covenant or the Covenant of Redemption/Grace? It sounds like the latter which is not a covenant specifically designated such in Scripture so many will not make the connection if they are not familiar with the terminology.


    Fourthly, by way of suggestion only, you might like to take some cues from the article, "Christ Altogether Lovely", by John Flavel. I read this a while ago and remember thinking at the time that it wonderfully captures a good summary list of reasons to treasure Christ. In fact, I have downloaded an MP3 version and listen to it periodically for my encouragement to treasure Christ.

    http://www.ccel.org/ccel/flavel/lovely.html

    http://www.gracegems.org/SERMONS2/Flavel%20altogether_lovely.htm


    Elijah, thanks so much for your efforts on this article and for including me in the review. It is excellent. Christ certainly is glorious and worthy of treasuring! I shall continue to meditate on this reality and let you know of any further thoughts.

    Shane.

    By Blogger Shane Becker, At 4:04 pm  

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