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Summary: When you see yourself as "the pearl of great price" you will finally begin to understand how much you are really worth!

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What Is Your Personal Worth?

The Pearl of Great Price

Matt 13:44-46, Malachi 3:17, Exodus 19:5

Introduction

1. We have started a sermon series on the parables of Jesus. These are stories that He told often instead of a sermon. Simple stories that helped people get a better picture of how God looked at things. Today we are going to look at two parables, the “pearl of great price” and the hidden treasure in the field. Let’s turn to Matthew 13:44-46.

2. These two short stories are parables about the Kingdom of God. This is not talking about when we die and go to heaven. This is explaining how the kingdom of God works on the earth. The first story tells about some treasure hidden in a field which was found by a man who got so excited, he went and sold all that he had just so he could buy the field. The second story tells of a merchant who is looking to buy beautiful pearls, and finds one so beautiful that he goes and sells all that he has so he could buy it.

Traditional interpretation

1. The traditional way these are interpreted is to teach that we are the merchantman and we are the man who found the treasure or the pearl and went and sold all we had to get this treasure which represents Jesus or salvation or heaven. It is often taught this way, many songs are written this way. We are encouraged to value our relationship with God and that we should be willing to pay any price to keep it. Many feel that this parable is teaching that our salvation is worth everything we have.

2. That is a nice way to understand these stories, but I believe there is a better way. There is also a problem with this interpretation. It does not follow what is known as Hermeneutic consistency. All the parables refer to the field as the world and the man doing the things spoken of is always God not us.

3. One day I was meditating on this parable and all of a sudden the Holy Spirit came into my room sat down in a chair and said He would like to clear up this parable for me. He was concerned that in misunderstanding this parable we can easily misunderstand the character of God and never really come to grasp how great His love for us is and how valuable we are. The man in the field and the merchant are both one and the same BUT they are not representations of us but rather they reveal unto us our heavenly Father. He is the merchant and He is the farmer. We are the pearl of great price we are the treasure found in the field. Jesus went and sold all he had so that he might buy us. This is not referring to “us” selling all that we had. What did we have? We had sin, sickness, guilt, depression, death. It is interesting to notice that he had to buy the entire field in order to purchase us, meaning that He purchased the entire world in his desire to purchase us.

4. There are two kinds of Christians in this world. Ones who work all their lives feeling like they must earn God’s favor and love. They must work for God. Ones who let God work for them or through them.

5. We get so caught up with all the things we should be doing, I should be reading more, praying more, fasting more, serving more, giving more time and money. We feel we should be involved in this and we helping here.

6. Now sometimes this is true but this parable is teaching us the other side of why we should be doing all these good things. God really loves you and wants to hang out with you. It is sort of like when you were single and someone told you that a real pretty lady or real handsome young man was interested in you. What did you do? “Oh great now I have to go find out about this pretty lady or this handsome guy. What a burden, what a bummer!” No, you eagerly went and found out more about him/her. This is the way it is with God. He is real interested in you. He values you. When you finally realize that the God of the universe is really interested in you and wants to get to know you that should arouse your curiosity enough to want to find out more about Him. Who is this God who thinks I am so valuable?

7. These two parables are telling us, how much we are worth to God.

8. With the interest rates going up so much in the past few months, I could not help but call the bank and see if I could refinance some investment loans to get a better rate or lock in the rates I had before they went up anymore. Now those of you who have applied for mortgages know what a hassle it is. The banks want to know everything about you. They want to know how much are you worth. Whenever I hear the question, “How much are you worth?” I feel a little insecure. I wish I was worth millions of dollars.

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