“If I were hungry, I would not tell you;
For the world is Mine, and all its fullness.”
Sometimes as I wander through God’s Word, a phrase or a word will stand out to me, and I will pursue the cross-references all over the Bible. Today I started with the verse above, and what really stood out to me was the idea that God needs nothing that we can give Him. God said something similar to Job:
Who has preceded Me, that I should pay him?
Everything under heaven is Mine.
And then it hit me. Sometimes, when we are getting ready to make an offering at church on Sunday, the pastor or someone else will remind us that all we have is a gift from God, that it all belongs to Him, and so our offering is simply returning it to Him to use as He sees fit. As these verses express, that is very true: the whole earth does belong to God. Our very lives belong to Him, and as we see in this next verse, our worldly riches are useless to our salvation anyway:
6 Those who trust in their wealth
And boast in the multitude of their riches,
7 None of them can by any means redeem his brother,
Nor give to God a ransom for him –
8 For the redemption of their souls is costly,
And it shall cease forever –
9 That he should continue to live eternally,
And not see the Pit.
No offering, no tithe or donation, no worldly sacrifice we make will ever buy the salvation of our souls. We could amass all of the world’s riches and give them to God and still not have enough, because, after all, it already belongs Him. We would be paying God a ransom that already was His! So what hope do we have? This hope:
24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.
25 “For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.
26 “For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?
27 “For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works.”
It is not what we have but what we DO that matters. And I am not talking about “works,” but about the workings of our hearts. Yes, continue to tithe and give to church and charities, but do not be deceived into thinking that it will buy even a portion of your salvation. God already owns your money and your worldly goods. What God WANTS to “own” is your heart.
16 For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it;
You do not delight in burnt offering.
17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit,
A broken and a contrite heart–
These, O God, You will not despise.
God’s own Son, Jesus Christ, paid the price for our sins, allowing Himself to be broken, beaten, and killed as payment to buy God’s righteousness for all of us. The only payment God requires from us now is the one thing He has given to us without reserve: our freedom. God desires us to give our will and our freedom to Him, to no longer be slaves to this world – to sin and death – but slaves to Christ and His righteousness. As Jesus said, we must lose our lives to find them. We must give our lives to God to be freed from sin, and then…
22 But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life.
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
We cannot pay God in gold but only in faith and service. And even a poor man can afford that price.
Heavenly Father, I praise You for Your justice and Your holiness. Thank You, dear Lord Jesus, for paying the price we could not pay. Please accept my life and my service, my heart and my freedom, as Your own. Use me to glorify Your holy name. Amen.