The Golden Reed (3):
A Living with Real Value
When we live by
the divine nature our life
will have eternal value
In Revelation 21:15, the Apostle John tells us that the angel showing him the New Jerusalem had:
“…a golden reed to measure the city, its gates, and its wall.”
As we have seen in our previous Notes, God measures everything that belongs to Him by the standard of this “golden reed”(cf. Rev. 11:1-2; if you missed those, they are on our “Brief Notes” page.
The golden reed is God’s standard for us because, as His children—those who have received His divine life—we also share in His glorious, “golden” divine nature (John 1:12-13; 2 Pet. 1:4). Thus, we should now be living by that nature, not by our old, fallen nature.
So, what does the gold show us about a living that is according to the divine nature?
First, because gold is one of the least reactive of all elements, it doesn’t corrode. Unlike silver which turns black, copper that turns green, or iron that rusts, gold never changes. Whatever else we pursue in our time on earth will eventually fade away, but a living by the divine nature will, like gold, stand the test of time; it will even have eternal value, because it matches God’s eternal standard. Even among men, the effect of such a living will remain long after we are gone.
Second, gold is one of the heaviest of all the elements, which speaks of the fact that a living by the divine nature will be weighty and solid.
Third, gold is, of course, extremely valuable and precious. So, a living according to this standard—a living that is incorruptible, weighty, and solid—will also be so valuable and precious! Not only will God value such a life, but so will our fellow believers in Christ, because God will use such a living to bring His kingdom to the earth. Even we ourselves will sense the value of such a life, in contrast with the “vain manner of life” we lived before we were saved (1 Pet. 1:18).
What a privilege that today we, as mortal human beings, can live such a “golden,” divine life! So many worldly people, even if they accomplish great things on the earth, feel empty inside, and also feel that the result of their life is just “vanity” (cf. Eccl. 1:1). As Christians, however, we can live lives that have genuine, eternal value!
Consider the lives of the apostles. As far as the world was concerned, Peter, Paul, John, and the others were “the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things” (1 Cor. 4:13); they were simply nothing. And yet, they surely had a living that was so incorruptible, weighty, solid, valuable, and precious! Not only will they have an eternal reward for leaving all to follow Christ (Matt. 16:24-27); even on the earth, their lives still have such weight and influence long after they went to be with the Lord.
Surely, as Christians, we ourselves should aspire to such a living today!
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“The Golden Reed” (4)
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— 10 September 2021 —