How much are you worth? Now, I’m not asking for the amount in your bank account, your 401k, your stock portfolio or your personal assets. But I’m curious—in the overall scheme of things—how much do you think the average human being is “worth”? What do you think YOU are worth? According to Google, on the black market, if we sold off all of our major organs [heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, etc.], we could fetch as much as $ 45 MILLION dollars! (Of course, we wouldn’t be alive to spend it!) The Office of Management and Budget (an “official” government agency) has put the value of a SINGLE human being at somewhere between $7 and $9 MILLION. If we could extract the six major elements that compose roughly 99% of our body mass, [oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, calcium, and phosphorus], we are worth about $576.
How do we measure our worth in this world?
When Paul the apostle was Saul the Pharisee from Tarsus, he valued people by their pedigree…their societal position…their “religiosity”. After his encounter with the living Christ on the road to Damascus, Paul discovered a whole new sense of value—of worth—for both himself and others. If we read this morning’s reminder from Galatians in context, we discover that Paul seemed to stop separating the world around him into various groups.
…In Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith….There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:28)
Our value—our WORTH—is not determined by where we were born…who our family is…where we work or live. Our “net worth” in dollars is unimportant. The number of vehicles in the garage or degrees hanging on our wall is irrelevant. The list of our descendants may look impressive in our obituary or be crucial to the continuation of our family name….but that is not our true worth. Ultimately, our true WORTH is measured by our relationship to our Creator—our recognition of who He has created us (and called us) to be.
When we were at a particularly “low” point in our young lives, when we felt undervalued by our friends, ignored or shunned by our teammates, criticized and humiliated by our teachers and parents, we often sensed our own self-worth sliding off the charts. We would begin to compare ourselves to others, to believe the voices of self-doubt ringing through our spirits. We would put stock in the taunts and criticisms of parents and playmates alike and begin to believe that we were “ugly” or “stupid” or “dumb”. But let’s consider what God has to say about our worth.
What are we WORTH?
In the creation story of Genesis, mankind is the pinnacle of God’s creative effort. Every living thing that exists upon the earth was SPOKEN into being by God. God said LET THERE BE…, and things sprang forth. By the end of the sixth day of creation, everything was in place—and pronounced GOOD. Except for us.
God said, “let us make man in our image, in our likeness. (Genesis 1:26). The Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being. (Genesis 2:7)
Unlike the natural world we inhabit…unlike the living creatures that fill the skies, the waters, the woods, and the fields—mankind was “handcrafted” by God Himself. The life that we have within our physical bodies is the very “ruach”—the breath of God—blown into our nostrils that makes us fully alive—that makes us fully human…fully God-inspired!
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, “I tell you, do not worry about your life—what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns… yet your heavenly father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? (Matthew 6:25-26)
Handmade…and worth it!
In God’s eyes, we were worth the time and effort to create. We were worth the time and commitment to send Jesus into our midst to teach us and heal us and save us.
Consider this—the God who SPOKE everything else into being—stooped to hand form humanity. He took the time to hand make us and literally BREATHE into us the very essence of Himself. God crafted a plan so that when we wandered off to do our own thing, we would come back to where we belong. He decided to come to earth Him-self—sending His very own Son into the world. He became ONE OF US—so that He could identify with us and we could identify with Him. As a Man, Jesus showed us our worth as children of God when He went to the cross to pay the price to bring us back into fellowship with the One who made us.
When we accept that sacrifice on Calvary’s cross, we become one with Christ, who gave His life for us. For that reason, Paul told the Galatians—“In Christ Jesus, you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. (Galatians 3:26,27)
In the world’s eyes, we may be worth $45 million for our body parts, $9 million according to the government, $576 for our chemical elements, or “not worth a plugged nickel”. We might be famous or “infamous”, a multimillionaire or a pauper, a “somebody” or a “nobody”. In our own eyes, we might be rich or poor or somewhere in-between. We might be the CEO, the foreman, the head of personnel, or “just a Mom”.
What is your worth? In God’s eyes? Clothed in Christ?
You are priceless!