LifeLink Devotions (Click for Audio Blog)
Tuesday, February 22, 2022
A young man asked a rich, old businessman how he had made all of his money. The man nodded wisely and said, “It was 1932, in the depth of the Great Depression, and I was down to my last nickel. I used it to buy an apple that I polished all day. At the end of the day I was able to sell that apple for a dime. The next morning I invested that dime in two apples. I polished and polished those apples, selling them for 20 cents at the end of the day. I continued this process for a week until I had accumulated 6 dollars and 40 cents. Then my wife’s father died and left us 2 million dollars.“
I can relate to the work ethic of polishing apples. I can’t relate to the wealth of such an inheritance… except from a spiritual perspective. In the spiritual realm, there are two distinct groups of people – those who polish apples and those who freely receive an inheritance by grace. Only one group is connected to God. Only one group has the guarantee of eternal life.
As we mentioned yesterday, the Apostle Paul starts off his letter to the Ephesians by highlighting the incredible gift of salvation we have received from God through His Son Jesus Christ. Four times in the first fourteen verses he refers to the praise that is due to God for what He has done. Today he expresses praise in the glorious grace that made our salvation possible.
Ephesians 1:5-8. “In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will – to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.”
Grace describes a gift that is given to an undeserving recipient. Apple polishers never receive grace. Apple polishers never understand God’s unconditional love. Apple polishers never get redeemed, never get forgiven, and never receive an inheritance. The poor in spirit do. The broken and humble do. Those with nothing receive everything. Those who have lost it all get lavished on. Those who work hard to polish the apple of their heart to make it worthy of God’s presence never enjoy His company. Those who admit that their apples are full of worms and discard them as worthless are given the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Becoming an adopted child of God does not require me to be polished, only poor. Poor enough to realize that I am hopeless and lost. Poor enough to accept a gift, knowing that I have no way to repay the Giver. Poor enough to finally understand grace.
O how we need to praise the God of grace. We who were poor have become rich because of the glorious grace of God. We have been adopted into His eternal family. We have been made joint heirs of all things owned by God. We have been guaranteed an inheritance of lavish wealth. We are the beneficiaries of an eternal life insurance policy, and have already received every spiritual blessing of that inheritance because the Owner of the wealth already died. We have been redeemed from our sin because He died to completely pay for our sin. We have been unconditionally and absolutely forgiven for our sin because of the grace of God that honors the blood of His Son Jesus shed on Calvary.
Praise Him, praise Him, Jesus our blessed redeemer.