When you live and work on a remote Indian reservation, as our sons did for a number of years, you get good at shopping without going anywhere. Because anywhere is so far away! Our sons got to be very skilled Internet shoppers. They found gifts there I didn’t even know existed. They found bargains I was jealous of. Sometimes, I would watch over their shoulder, and I’ve gotten kind of good at it these days. But I’d see them bid on an item that was being auctioned on the Internet. They’re pretty good at knowing what it’s going to take to own what was being auctioned. For all the little tricks of the trade, there seemed to be one decisive bottom line. Everyone knows that it belongs to the one who bids the most. Right?
I’m Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about “The Highest Bid You’ve Ever Had.”
Many years ago, Bob Dylan had a hit single with a simple message. He said, “You gotta serve somebody. It may be the devil, it may be the Lord, but you gotta serve somebody.” Consciously or unconsciously, we all make choices about what or who we’re going to give ourselves to. We pour ourselves into a relationship, a family, a business, a church, a hobby. We pour ourselves into making money, or into pleasing our friends. It’s almost as if they’re all bidding for your time, your energy, your commitment.
But really you should belong to the highest bidder – the one who paid the most for you. That would be Jesus. He announced His personal mission in our word for today from the Word of God in Mark 10:45. Referring to Himself with the title “Son of Man,” Jesus said: “The Son of Man came…to give His life as a ransom for many.” Okay, what’s a ransom? Well, it’s the price you pay to get someone back. Jesus spells out here the price He paid to get you back – it was His life.
In another place, the Bible says: “You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price” (1 Corinthians 6:20). Yeah, a very high price – the life of His one and only Son. Which raises a question. Why did Jesus go through the torture and humiliation and brutal death by crucifixion? Honestly, my sin is so bad, that’s what it took to pay for it. All of us have repeatedly said, in essence, “No, God, I won’t do it Your way. I’ll do what I want.” We have openly and repeatedly defied the God who made us. And that spiritual hijacking of our life carries a death penalty: eternal separation from the God who is the source of everything good.
But the Bible makes this stunning little statement: “Christ died for our sins” (Romans 5:8). I did the sinning. Jesus did the dying for it. Then He rose again from the dead in order to offer you and me what we could never deserve – an eternity in His heaven.
But the price for you was so high. Jesus was beaten until His back was ripped apart. He carried a cross on that bloody back, a crown of thorns was jammed on his head, spikes were driven into His hands and feet. And worst of all, His Father turned His back on Him because He was carrying your sin so God would never have to turn His back on you. The Bible says Jesus was “so disfigured one would scarcely know He was a person” (Isaiah 52:14). All that was for you…to pay for you.
Is it any wonder, then, that God bases your entire eternity on what you do with His Son? It’s possible that you’ve believed about Jesus for a long time, but you don’t belong to Jesus, because there’s never been a time when you’ve totally given yourself to Him as your only hope of being forgiven for your sin – your only hope of going to heaven.
Has there ever been a time when you did that? If you’re not sure you belong to Him, I encourage you to make sure today. The greatest tragedy of your life would be that Jesus went through hell to save you and you never grabbed your Rescuer. You could do that today. Right where you are, just talk to Him. Tell Him you’re ready to turn from your sin and to hold onto Him like He’s your only hope.
We’d love to help you. Just go to our website. You’ll see there how to begin this relationship. That website is ANewStory.com.
Everything Jesus did on that cross He did for one reason: He loves you. Isn’t it time you started to live for the One who loves you the most?