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What Price Would You Put on God?

A few weeks ago, our township announced its yearly garage sale weekend. This annual practice allows a lot of people in one area to stage garage sales at the same time. The thinking is that this will drive up traffic for the sales.

Naturally, our family started thinking about which things we might like to sell. It’s always nice to have some extra money coming in—with inflation being what it is. And it feels good to move stuff you can easily get along without.

The garage sale is this weekend. First things first, everything needs to be priced. This takes experience and a certain feel. If you price things too high, they will not sell. It’s quite discouraging to bring items that didn’t sell back into the house. Price things too low…well, everyone wants to barter the price down anyway. And since the price stickers sometimes blow off or fall off, we are considering setting out a few tables. Everything on a given table would be the same price.

As we are preparing for our garage sale, I have also been preparing some writing and videos on the crucifixion of Jesus. As a Muslim-background Christian, I have long contemplated God coming to earth in the person of Jesus. His redemptive mission was to die for the sins of people.

In Islam, on the other hand, God does not come to visit the earth. Neither does he incarnate himself. “The Verse of the Throne” is a famous verse in the Qur’an (2:255) which reinforces the concept that Allah exists out there ruling the universe from his throne. Muslims tend to recoil at the idea of God becoming a person, for any reason.

As Christians, we understand from Philippians 2:5-11 that God humbled himself in the person of Christ. He emptied Himself in the kenosis described in verse 7. We are eternally grateful that Christ humbled himself in this way.

What struck me the other day was that God allowed himself to be priced like a garage sale item. Matthew describes this event: “Then one of the twelve, named Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, ‘What are you willing to give me to betray Him to you?’ And they weighed out thirty pieces of silver to him” (Matthew 26:14-15). Judas negotiated the best price he could get for Jesus. Of course, Zechariah’s prophecy (11:11-13) foretold the thirty pieces of silver.

If you happen to stop at a garage sale this year, perhaps pause to appreciate that Jesus allowed himself to be priced like a garage sale item. Truly, it was a humiliating event in the life of Christ, but He did it all for our sakes. Join us also in prayer that Muslims would come to embrace the suffering Savior. Such a decision may cost them a lot, too.

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