Summary: God could have commissioned a host of angels to eloquently proclaim the message of salvation but He chose to use His children whom He had redeemed from sin.
TREASURE IN EARTHEN VESSELS
“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.” 2 Corinthians 4:7
THE TREASURE: The Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ
And what a treasure this is! The wonderful message that tells us that “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son” to redeem mankind from sin and everlasting damnation. Such a wonderful message as this needs to be shouted from the house tops so that all may hear and believe!
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, "The just shall live by faith." Romans 1:16-17
The power of the Gospel enables us to go from “a saving faith” to a “victorious faith”. 1 John 5:4 says, “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world--our faith.”
THE EARTHEN VESSELS THAT HOLD THE TREASURE
“Then the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.” Genesis 2:7
All mankind are jars of clay. The Bible does not attempt to cover up the weaknesses of its leading characters.
Abraham doubted God when he fathered Ishmael.
“Then God said to Abraham, ‘As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name. And I will bless her and also give you a son by her; then I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of peoples shall be from her.’ Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said in his heart, ‘Shall a child be born to a man who is one hundred years old? And shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?" Genesis 17:15-17
Moses struck the Rock instead of speaking to it.
“Then Moses lifted his hand and struck the rock twice with his rod; and water came out abundantly, and the congregation and their animals drank. Then the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, "Because you did not believe Me, to hallow Me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have given them." Exodus 20:11-12
David, whom the Bible calls “a man after God’s own heart”, had Bathsheba’s husband killed in an effort to cover-up his sin with her. The prophet Nathan confronted David and asked him, ’Why have you despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in His sight? You have killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword; you have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the people of Ammon.” 2 Samuel 12:9
Solomon permitted all of his 700 wives and 300 concubines who desired to do so to set up shrines and worship pagan idols in his house. He joined them in their idolatry by worshiping Ashtoreth, Chemosh and Moloch according to 1 Kings 11.
Peter, preacher on the day of Pentecost and writer of two books in the Bible, denied knowing the Lord Jesus and cursed while doing so. The record is found in Matthew 26:69-75.
Paul, writer of 13 books in the Bible, confessed his own spiritual weakness and shortcomings in Romans 7:13-25. Broken-hearted because of his occasional weakness and failure, Paul cried out, “O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God--through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin. (Romans 7:24-25)
And to this list of earthen vessels who sinned and missed the mark at times, we add our own names. The best that can be said of anyone of us is that we are sinners saved by the grace of God through the atoning blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.
THE EXCELLENCY OF THE POWER IS OF GOD AND NOT US
“And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.” 1 Corinthians 2:4-5
God could have commissioned a host of angels to eloquently proclaim the message of salvation but He chose to use His children whom He had redeemed from sin. How honored we, His earthen vessels, should feel to be commissioned by our Lord Jesus Christ to "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. (Matthew 28:19-20).