Daily Lectionary: Ezekiel 18:1-4,19-32; Romans 2:17-29

“.. who has redeemed me, a lost and condemned creature, purchased and won me from all sins, from death, and the power of the devil.” (The Small Catechism: Second Article of the Apostles’ Creed, Part 2)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. What are you worth? Or, better, what are you worth and to whom? Are you looking at cash value? How do we calculate that? The elements in your body, if sold on the open market, would bring about $160 for a 175-pound person. If you figure out how much is invested in you, perhaps by your parents, that figure gets much higher. How many years of room and board, what other necessities, and what luxuries have been provided?

If you want to really get an inflated sense of what you’re worth, you can figure out the value of your various organs, organic compounds, hormones, and the like. Estimates range into the neighborhood of $50 million dollars. That would be quite a windfall—although you wouldn’t be around to collect.

Scripture assigns value differently. By nature, we are worthless rebels. God’s keeping us and maintaining us hardly seems cost-efficient. Yet because Christ claimed fallen humanity as His own in His suffering and death, we find ourselves worth more than all the world’s silver and gold. What is the value of even a single drop of God’s own blood? That’s the worth the Father assigns to you.

So if false friends or family members belittle, demean, and devalue you, remember that you are worth the lifeblood of Jesus Christ. You’re no longer impoverished by sin, death, and devil, and bankrupt before the Father. Christ willingly assigned the value of His own life to you that you might believe in Him, value Him as the One who ransomed you, and likewise value all other people as priceless and redeemed. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

O Lord, in this wondrous Sacrament You have left us a remembrance of Your passion. Grant that we may so receive the sacred mystery of Your body and blood that the fruits of Your redemption may continually be manifest in us; for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. (Collect for Holy Thursday)

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