God has an economy. It is not unlike our own where one thing may be exchanged for another of equal or greater value. However, where our economy is generally based on the value of gold, God’s economy is based on faith, which to Him is the only thing of any value at all.
Jesus’s first order of business was to select the twelve apostles whom He would teach this lesson. He said, “if any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” (Matt 16:25) He went even further by telling them directly that, as they were to go after the lost children of Israel, they were to take nothing with them, save the clothes on their back, not even gold. He assured them that as they did His work, their needs would be met. (Matt 10:5-10)
The Bible teaches us that the apostles followed this principle. For three and a half years, they did this, all while walking literally with Christ. It was their faith in Him that provided for them. They had food when they were hungry, by fish and by bread. They had places to shelter as they traveled. There was water, wine, and good health. All of their basic needs had been met while they walked with Him. This continued after He died and was resurrected and opened their eyes further so that they truly understood. Peter voiced this principle and his faith as he demonstrated it with John to the man begging alms by the gate called Beautiful.
“Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.” Acts 3:6&7
Silver and gold were worthless, even in this world, to a man who could not get from one place to another to spend it. This guy was totally dependent on someone else to get him to that gate every day, which is a picture of us before we were saved. We were slaves to this world, begging for what was of value to the world (a new car, a bigger house, prestige, fame and fortune), but then a Peter, or a Paul, or a Phillip came to us and told us some Truth. No amount of money is worth anything compared to the perfect and abundant gifts of God. So, Peter gives him the good news! No longer would he be a slave to that system. There was no gold or silver coming, but through Christ Jesus, there was freedom! In his faith, Peter proclaimed it, which bolstered what little faith the beggar had to stand on the feet he didn’t even yet know how to stand on.
Our faith accesses God’s grace in a way that unlocks all of the provision He has for us. The most important of which is salvation.
“…ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, …but with the precious blood of Christ” I Peter 1:18&19
From there, God tells us that there is nothing more precious than our faith in Christ, and in fact, He works on us to get us to see this spiritual fact.
“That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:” I Peter 1:7
Anything and everything that is not God is deemed as pollution to our spirit. When precious metals are used to describe the value of our faith, the word dross is utilized. Dross is the other metals that are not silver and gold. The only way to get the other metals out of the pure gold or silver is to melt it using fire. Just the right amount of heat causes the dross to float to the surface in order that it can then be drawn off, leaving a purer, even more valuable gold or silver, which is then reformed into bars, coins, rings, etc. In much the same way, our faith needs to be purged of unbelief and doubt, so that it becomes faith solely in Christ and what He has done. That makes it the most precious in His eyes.
Our faith is so much more precious than gold, that faith is what God says women should adorn themselves with, that they might be the most beautiful to Him. (I Tim 2:9&10) Faith is so far superior that God chose to line the very streets of Heaven with gold, that we may tread it underfoot. (Rev 21:21) Jesus even explained it to the scribes and Pharisees, when He said that it wasn’t the gold that was worth anything, it was the temple that sanctified it. (Matt 23:16&17)
Faith is the gold standard in God’s economy. Everything He has for us, including the mansions when we get to Heaven, our salvation that will get us there, and our abundant life He gives us now are all received by faith, being more precious than of gold that perisheth.
Christ says, “I counsel thee to buy of Me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.” Rev 3:18
We should open our spiritual eyes and see this Truth through the anointed salve of the Spirit: If our faith is what God considers as gold in Heaven’s economy, and is that much more precious to Him, then we should want to have the same value system right now in our lives. He authored this faith we have, and so as He deems fit to purify it and to complete it, so be it. May He continue to purge the dross of unbelief and doubt, that our faith becomes stronger and more pure. May He continue to supply the very faith that is our most precious of possessions, more precious than of gold, and may we have hearts to continue to receive it, and cherish it as He does.
Let us keep our faith in Jesus Christ and Him crucified, and nothing else, and when all else is loss, we will remain rich because of that greatest of gifts given to us.