I once heard a story about a piece of artwork called The Son. It was a painting of a brave soldier who gave his life in battle to save others. In grateful appreciation, one of those soldiers he saved painted this portrait for the man’s father, knowing that the father loved and collected artwork. Presenting it to the father, the soldier said, “I know this isn’t much. I’m not a great artist, but I think your son would have wanted you to have this.” The father’s eyes welled up with tears. He was in awe of how this painting captured the personality of his only son. He offered to pay for the painting, but the soldier replied, “Oh no, sir, I can never repay what your son did for me. This is a gift.” Of all the father’s rare works of art, including those by Picasso and Raphael, he treasured The Son the most.
After the father’s death, many influential people gathered at the auction of his famous art collection. On the platform sat the painting of The Son. The auctioneer pounded his gavel. “We will start the bidding with this portrait of The Son. Who will bid for this painting?” Silence followed. Then a voice shouted, “We want to see the famous paintings. Skip this one.” But the auctioneer persisted: “Who will start the bidding? $100, $200? The Son! The Son! Who’ll take The Son?”
Finally, a voice came from the very back of the room. The longtime gardener of the man and his son said, “I’ll give $10 for the painting,” offering all he could afford. “We have $10, who’ll bid $20?” The crowd shouted, “Give it to him for $10. Let’s see the masterpieces!” “Going once, going twice, SOLD for $10,” called the auctioneer as he pounded the gavel.
The crowd exclaimed, “Now let’s get on with the collection!” But the auctioneer laid down his gavel and closed the auction—nothing else would be sold. He explained that the father had planned that only the painting of The Son would be auctioned—and whoever bought that painting would inherit his entire estate including all his rare and priceless paintings. “Whoever takes The Son,” the auctioneer declared, “gets everything!”
God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life. Whoever “takes the Son,” the Lord Jesus Christ—by confessing Jesus as lord and believing that God raised him from the dead—gets everything God made available to His children. When we become born-again sons of God, we gain an inheritance. The gardener who bought the painting of The Son for ten dollars inherited the father’s entire estate. And what did he “give up”? A life of poverty.
We’ll look at five great gains God makes available with the new birth for us to enjoy. With each gain we’ll also see what each son of God can expect to give up. Here’s the first great gain.
In the new birth, a person is guaranteed everlasting life.
Romans 10:9 and 10:
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
One aspect of being “saved” in Romans 10:9 is being saved from everlasting death and judgment.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish [have everlasting death], but have everlasting life.
God loves us so much that He made a way for us to gain everlasting life. In John 4:14, Jesus spoke to a woman of Samaria at Jacob’s well about “water springing up into everlasting life.” In John 7:38, Jesus used “living water” as an analogy to teach about the outpouring of holy spirit with the new birth that would one day become available. God gives eternal life through His Son Jesus Christ.
I John 5:11-13:
And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.
What joy this brings to our hearts to know that we have everlasting life with God, His Son Jesus Christ, and all those who are born again. Have you ever paused to think about living forever? What we gain with this benefit is almost too much for our minds to comprehend! And what do we give up? We give up any uncertainty of what the future might hold for us after Christ returns.
If everlasting life were the only benefit we gained by way of the new birth, it would be worth it. But wait, there’s more!…
This is an excerpt from the May/June 2015 issue of The Way Magazine.
Copyright© 2015 by The Way International. All rights reserved.
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