I am not a bargain hunter. Some people are really good at finding a great deal – I am not one of those guys. I just don’t have time or the effort it takes to find the really good deals.
Today, I have a bargain. It’s actually not my bargain, it’s Jesus’ offer. It’s found in Luke 9:24. It says, “For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.” Let’s take a closer look at this offer.
Finding a good deal
Maybe you’re looking for a new set of golf irons. Obviously, you’re going to have to fork out good money for good clubs. Maybe you’re shopping for a new rifle before deer season- a good rifle is not cheap! Perhaps you’re looking for a new cell phone, new car, new gym membership; everyone wants a good deal. We all instinctively know that a great product usually doesn’t come at a great price. You pay for what you get. That’s why the really great deals are so hard to find.
On the surface the deal that Jesus offers looks crazy! Jesus is asking for my life!?!?! What on earth could possibly be worth exchanging my life for? What is Jesus offering that would make me want to give up my life? Here’s the answer… A better life! Jesus is offering a life of joy and peace. He’s offering abundant life. Jesus is willing to give you eternal life in exchange for your mortal life. I refer to this as “the great exchange”.
The great exchange
The great exchange is when you give your sins and your failures to Jesus and he gives you forgiveness and righteousness. However, that forgiveness comes at a great cost. It cost Jesus his life to be able to offer you forgiveness. He died as a payment for my sins. The great exchange is going to cost you something too…it’s going to cost your life! I’m not referring to human sacrifice… I’m referring to surrendering everything to Jesus.
The great exchange is when you take the messed up life that you been living, and give it to Jesus. In exchange, Jesus gives you credit for the perfect life that he’s lived. Or put another way, here’s the offer- give up your life to Jesus and find an even greater life, try to hold on to the life you have and lose everything. Sounds like a no brainer to me.
Profit and loss
In order to drive this point home even more Jesus challenges you to take a look at the balance sheet. He asks you to consider the profit and loss that’s at stake here. In Luke 9:25 Jesus states that gaining the whole world is not a worthy match for the life that he has to offer you.
If you had an unlimited amount of money, if you could buy anything you wanted at any time, it’s still wouldn’t satisfy. That’s what Jesus is trying to say. Stuff doesn’t satisfy. Money can’t buy you love. It’s hard to recognize the deal that Jesus is making in this over the materialistic society that we live in. As soon as you buy the latest gadget a newer gadget comes out. As soon as you get the thing you been saving for a newer version is released. It’s maddening! There’s no end to this merry-go-round of newer and better stuff. So Jesus says, “just get off the merry-go-round.” Stop looking for stuff to satisfy you.
There is a desire for something that stuff can’t satisfy built deep inside the human soul. It’s what French philosopher Blaise Pascal called a God shaped vacuum. “There is a God shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God, the Creator, made known through Jesus.”
Try as you might- that new car, new clothes, new golf club, and new rifle will not fill that God shaped vacuum! Only Jesus can do that! So take the offer. Accept the great exchange. Surrender everything to Jesus. Offer him your very life, and find a life worth living.