More than gold

More than gold

When you hear the word ‘gold’, some of the first things that could come to mind include ‘value’, ‘treasure’, ‘beauty’, ‘money’! But have you ever stopped to ask yourself why? Why is gold so precious in the sight of human beings? Why are pirates in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise always crying for more of this metal? 

According to Investopedia, the reasons for gold’s value include the following: (i) The metal is both abundant and rare (ii) Gold doesn’t corrode, so it provides a sustainable store of value (iii) Gold has a beautiful appearance and is thus attractive and appealing to the eye.[1] As such, gold is clearly a real treasure, but even with all its appeal, Jesus far exceeds gold in value. Let me give you an idea of how.

Abundant but Rare

Gold is often cherished because it is rare, but Investopedia notes that its value comes from the fact that it is “abundant enough to create coins but rare enough so that not everyone can produce them.” As such, both its abundant and rare characteristics contribute to making the metal so treasured. However, Investopedia’s description deals with gold in a commercial sense. Jesus also shows elements of abundance and rarity, but the value that comes out of this duality far outweighs the value of all the gold in this world.

Jesus’ abundance reflects in His omnipresence. Being omnipresent, He is everywhere at all times (Psalm 139:7-12). So, whilst you are speaking to Him in your room on a Sunday morning, He is also busy touching people in a church service that is halfway around the world. Whether you think you need Him or not He is always barely a call away (Romans 10:13). It is a privilege to have such access to the Lord.

Jesus’ abundance also reflects in his omniscience and omnipotence. Being omniscient, He is aware of everything; He even knew you before you were conceived in your mother’s womb (Jeremiah 1:5). He is omnipotent because there is absolutely nothing that He cannot do; he even made money appear in the mouth of a fish (Jeremiah 32:27; Matthew 17:27)! If He were physically on earth today, His net worth would probably break the internet! Clearly Jesus can bless you with wealth and the gold you so desire, but His value goes far beyond wealth; His abundance is above and beyond just money.

But Jesus is also very rare, because there is absolutely no one like Him. He is the only begotten Son of God; nobody else has this title (John 3:16). Being the only begotten Son, He is the only one who could pay the ultimate price, so that we could be united with the Lord. Jesus is thus our only bridge to the Father, to His Kingdom, and to eternal life; now these far exceed any benefits of gold that we may enjoy here on this earth (John 14:6). 

So, although Jesus and gold are both very rare and thus highly valued, Jesus’ worth far exceeds that of gold because His presence in our lives does so much more for us than make us rich on this earth. This earth is going to completely pass away one day, along with all its gold and riches (1 John 2:17). We are all going to be somewhere by the time that happens, and Jesus’ presence or absence in your life is what determines where you will be.

Never diminishes in value.

Gold is gold. It hardly deteriorates or rusts over time, especially if it’s in its purest form. And that is one of the reasons why it is so valuable. It is mostly very stable. Note the words in use though: ‘hardly’, ‘mostly’. According to TAMAPASTEEL & SUPPLY, it is possible for gold to tarnish; in their own words “gold tarnish is very thin and shows up as a darkening of reflecting surfaces”.[2]

But God, the creator of gold, never ‘tarnishes’. He never changes. At His very core and essence, He was, and is, and will always be God (Hebrews 13:8). This is why we can have so much confidence in Him. We know we can take Him by His Word (Numbers 23:19). We know we can follow Him in obedience and know that everything in Him is working out together for our good (Romans 8:28). We know that He is with us in the happiest and saddest of moments (Matthew 28:20). We know for sure that God truly is God. So yes, gold hardly tarnishes over time, but Jesus never diminishes over time, He is eternally God.

Beautiful

Gold has a naturally captivating appearance; a glossy, untarnished block of gold can lighten up some of the darkest of moods. When people adorn themselves with golden jewelry or even just gold-rimmed articles, it brightens them up and immediately leaves them looking classy. 

But Jesus’ beauty transcends that of the finest gold that has or will ever exist. His beauty includes His appearance, but it also includes His character. After all, when He was busy walking on the earth on assignment, He probably was not seen as the most attractive person physically (Isaiah 53:2), but people were drawn to Him because of His love, His kindness, His faith, His power, His grace, etc. 

Some prophets of old had the privilege of seeing the Lord, not as he was as a man on this earth, but in His true, glorious form; with the words they had in their vocabulary, these are some of the ways they described Him:

‘I lifted up my eyes and looked, and behold, a man clothed in linen, with a belt of fine gold from Uphaz around his waist. His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and the sound of his words like the sound of a multitude.’—Daniel 10: 5-6

‘And in the midst of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed with a long robe and with a golden sash around his chest. The hairs of his head were white, like white wool, like snow. His eyes were like a flame of fire, His feet were like burnished bronze, refined in a furnace, and his voice was like the roar of many waters.’—Revelation 1: 13-15

The beauty and glory of the Lord is so great that it immediately instills in you a strong reverence for Him. You begin to see how and where you fall short. The prophet Isaiah saw Jesus in all His splendor in the year that King Uzziah died; however, he was filled with a certain terror, immediately realizing that he was not worthy to stand before the King of glory:

‘And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”’—Isaiah 6:5

The Lord, in His mercy and power, cleansed Isaiah then and there by touching his mouth with a burning coal. After that, he was able to dwell in the magnificent presence of God. 

Thank God for Jesus’ sacrifice though! I can imagine it could have been pretty painful to receive hot coals on our mouths every time we wanted to stand before God! But because of Christ’s sacrifice, we can stand confidently before the Lord at any time, anywhere (Hebrews 4:16). What a blessing. 

When you accept Jesus’ sacrifice and allow Him to be Lord over your life, His beauty and glory begins to shine through you; you begin to act, talk and walk more and more like Him, and His Spirit even strengthens and livens up your physical body (2 Corinthians 3:15-18; Romans 8:11). 

Honestly, it looks to me like Jesus is much more golden than gold itself.

Wrapping up…

I was inspired to write this article by a song of the same title (More than Gold by Judikay). It reminded me of what a blessing it is to have Jesus in your life; His value in your life far outweighs the value of any priced material like gold, because there is so much more to life than just wealth and physical appearance. Jesus enriches your life in ways that gold cannot; so, like the song goes, “If all I’ve got is Jesus, I’ve got something more than gold! I’ll tell it to the world: Jesus is more than gold”.

[1] Steel, Tampa. “10 Metals That Don’t Rust.” Tampasteel.com, August 13, 2018. https://tampasteel.com/metals-that-dont-rust/ 

[2] Tardi, Carla. “Why Has Gold Always Been Valuable?” Investopedia.com, May 7, 2021. https://www.investopedia.com/articles/investing/071114/why-gold-has-always-had-value.asp 

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