#DailyDevotion 2 Cor. 4:5ff The Greatest Treasure In Jars Of Clay
2 Cor. 4:7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So death is at work in us, but life in you.
Jars of clay. That is how St. Paul describes our bodies. But it is to show how precarious a situation our life is on earth. It doesn’t take much to take us out. Even more so how common and profane our bodies are in their sinful state. Yet much like the Dead Sea Scrolls, we, as Christians, have a treasure in these jars of clay.
For the glory of God, the name of the Lord dwells in us. Just the glory of the Lord and the name of the Lord dwelt in the tabernacle as the Israelites traveled the wilderness and the when Solomon built a temple, the Lord Jesus Christ has made these jars of clay, our bodies his temples.
Now these bodies of our suffer much. St. Paul describes what has been happening to him in his body, afflicted, perplexed, persecuted, carrying the in the body the death of Jesus. Yet, here our Lord Jesus Christ is pleased to dwell with his name and his glory. His life is in us working in us. He is making his life manifest in us. He is renewing us inwardly and that renewal is seen by others in the life we live in Christ.
For although in this life we will undergo much, Paul also says we are not crushed, not driven to despair, not forsaken, and not destroyed. If Christ Jesus were not with us, these things would carry us away. But the Lord Jesus Christ is with us. We place our confidence in him. He is our rock and our fortress. He is our strength and our shield. In him our hearts trusts for he hears our pleas for mercy and delivers us.
So we too can then have mercy on those around us. We can show the love of God in Christ Jesus to those who need us. Death may be working in our bodies but the life of Christ is working in our hearts, minds and souls, remembering all the Lord has done for us so that we may do likewise for the person in front of us.
Almighty God and Father, grant us such faith in Jesus Christ, that we may take comfort in these jars of clay, believing that we are the vessels of your glory and your name, so that the life of Christ may be manifest to the world in these bodies of death. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.