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December 21 Today’s Reading: 1 Peter 2-5
“Unto you therefore which believe he is precious.”
1 Peter 2:7
This is not some far-fetched, fanatical notion. It is a fact. God the Holy Ghost has caused it to be written in the volume of inspiration as the truth of God. It is confirmed by the history of the Church from Abel to Malachi, from John the Baptist to John the Beloved. It is confirmed by those martyrs who suffered imprisonment and death from Stephen to Polycarp, from Latimer and Ridley to Bunyan. The blood of God’s saints cries out from the ground, from the dungeons of Rome, and from the torture chambers of the Pope’s inquisition, — “Christ is precious!” And it is confirmed by the experience of all who believe. From their inmost soul, God’s elect all agree, “He is precious.” This is faith’s estimation of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Precious in Himself
When we think of our Savior’s glorious person, we say, “He is precious.” He is the God-man. Jesus Christ is himself God Almighty, the eternal Son of the eternal Father. The brightness of the Father’s glory and the express image of his Person is Christ our Savior. And he is man, the perfect man, “holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners.” He is precious in himself, intrinsically precious. He is the Rose of Sharon, the Lily of the Valley, the Fairest among Ten Thousand. He is Altogether Lovely. Who can compare with this glorious person? He is precious.
Precious to Me
And when I recall what he has done for my soul, I am overwhelmed with his love and grace. Beholding Christ as my redeeming Substitute, my heart is constrained to say, “He is precious.” In love he chose me and became my Surety in the covenant of grace. He lived upon the earth, in conformity to the law of God, to accomplish righteousness for me. And he died in my stead upon the cursed tree, putting away all my sin. Being made sin for me, that I might be made the righteousness of God in him, the Son of God bore all the fury of God’s infinite wrath unto the full satisfaction of divine justice on my behalf. For me he arose and assumed the throne of universal dominion. Behold, O my soul, Jesus Christ your crucified, risen, exalted, reigning Redeemer, and know this, “he is precious!”
Precious to You
Is Christ precious to you? If he is, you are a true believer. If he is not, you do not have the faith of God’s elect. Do you believe in Jesus for life and salvation? If you do, he is precious to you. He is precious in himself; and God’s gift of faith working in you makes him precious to you. Is the Lord Jesus precious in his person, precious in his work, precious in his offices, precious in his relations, precious in his whole character? Do you know him, so as to love him, to live to him, to rejoice in him, and to cast your whole soul upon him, for life and salvation? Do you accept him as the Father’s gift, the Sent, the Sealed, the Anointed, the Christ, of the Father? Is he so precious, that there is nothing in him but what you love, nothing you would change? His cross is precious, as well as his crown! Afflictions with him are sweeter than prosperity without him.
Pause, my soul, to think about these things. There is nothing out of Christ that can be truly satisfying. Your dearest earthly relation, however sweet, has some tinge, some alloy, something impure, something bitter. But there is no mixture of impurity or bitterness in Christ. All he is is pure, and lovely, and transcendently glorious. He is, as one of old described him, “a sea of sweetness, without a single drop of gall.” — “Unto you therefore which believe he is precious!”