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Pointers along the way #665

What is Jesus worth to me?

- Jacob Ninan

It's one thing to sing about how precious Jesus is to us and quite another thing to choose Him above other things in our daily life. We are all tempted many times, in many ways, to choose money, pleasure, fame, favour of man, etc., at the cost of denying Jesus, disobeying or displeasing Him. In a sense this is the essence of temptation. Christians can be put into groups in relation to their response to temptation. Some keep Jesus and daily life in different compartments and find no incongruity between singing songs of worship and then living just like unbelievers the rest of the time. Some struggle between the two, but give in now and then to forgetting Jesus, and justify themselves saying that if we are to live in this world we have to take some pragmatic steps. Some others also struggle between the two, but their constant endeavour is to be faithful to Jesus and they feel terribly pained when they fall. Where do we stand?

How precious Jesus is to us is seen not in the songs we sing, but in comparison to things and people in our life. Jesus pictured the kingdom of God like a pearl merchant who found one pearl more precious than everything else he had, sold off all else and bought it (Mt.13:45,46). What we can learn from this is that if we really want to belong to His kingdom, we must value Him more than everything else. The rich young ruler failed when he chose to hold on to his wealth than follow Jesus (Mk.10:21). Satan tried to tempt Jesus Himself with power and fame by bending a little to him (Mt.4:8-10).

Many times we find ourselves in a place where if we stand with Jesus some of our relatives or friends may get upset with us. That is when we are tested to see who is more important for us, Jesus or our friends or loved ones. Jesus has not given us any excuse when He said that if we loved any of our loved ones more than Him, we could not really be His disciples (Mt.10:37).

Many times we are to choose between pleasing Jesus and pleasing ourselves. Sin often offers us pleasure, but it is transient and temporary and ultimately leads to our ruin. Esau is portrayed before us as someone who chose temporary pleasure and threw away his birthright (He.12:16,17).

Satan tries to intimidate us by pointing out how much we will lose if we chose Jesus in such practical situations. He says we might lose our fun in life, job, money, position, family, friendship, etc., and that we would regret it afterwards. He tries to persuade us to choose the immediate gain and to ignore the eternal implications.

But Jesus is both for now and for eternity. He is frank enough to tell us that if we follow Him we might suffer opposition and loss on this earth (Mt.10:34;Jn.16:33). But we must think of the ultimate and lasting blessings in comparison to the temporary suffering here. He will take care of us here, but we will get eternal wealth, pleasure and friendship in the place of the earthly ones (Mk.10:29,30). What is it worth to us?


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