“The Value of a Life” - Pastor Mark Snyder
The question, “How much is he/she worth?” is something that we, as a society, have come to ask. This inquiry deals with a person’s “net worth” (the sum of bank accounts + investments + property + annuities, retirement, etc. minus debts). This question may be helpful in the financial world but I propose that this is an obscene way to measure the intrinsic value of an individual life. Who or What dictates the value of a life? Does the stock market? Ben Bernanke (Federal Reserve Chair)? President Obama? We do not rely on any one person or institution for the answer. We look elsewhere. Perhaps we are still looking….
The year 2012 ended tragically. Our nation and world is still reeling from the needless loss of life that occurred in a Newport, Connecticut school on December 15th. The deacons of the church made calls that evening to announce a prayer service for the following day. We sought God aloud and in silence, asking for the Almighty to come to the rescue. We prayed for the individual families by name on Sunday. We grieved for those much closer to the tragedy and shared an unspeakable void for we, too had experienced loss.
The value of life is the issue that is now front and center in the national arena. Politicians, activists, lobbyists, health officials, psychologists, lawmakers, and others will continue to weigh-in on the subject. In all our human efforts we simply cannot rewrite the story. We can only work at preventing another horror. The fact that a person is irreplaceable should awaken us to the fact that we simply are unable to value life adequately.
God values life infinitely more than us. Christmas is God’s response to a terrible tragedy. God’s own people have rejected their first love incessantly and must pay the penalty for their sin. God intervenes. “God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). Jesus is born to us so that we may learn the way of LIFE.
The grand resolution to our human tragedy is found in Jesus. God sent Jesus “so that the world would be saved” (John 3:17). God understands our loss in a profound and intimate way. If we are truly growing in our understanding of the nature of God than a person’s “net worth” will be ever on the rise. May our worldly methods of assessing human worth be replaced with a Godly understanding that our lives are worth the death of His one and only son. In this light, a life could never be more valuable.
“I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” -Jesus