23 September 2012
The passage before us sees Paul bringing to a close his stinging accusation of sinfulness on the part of both Jews and Gentiles. Being true to the legal professional that he was, Paul sums up his accusation against all of humanity - that it stands guilty of rebellion against its righteous Creator. Worse still, there is no way for men to absolve themselves of their guilt; not even by conforming to the Law itself. These are the proverbial rags that Paul wishes his audience to see themselves in.
But then, halfway through his argument, Paul focuses on the good news - that men can hope to be righteous before God through faith in Jesus Christ. Where once there was no hope of righteousness, God now offers His gift of grace by justifying men through the redemptive work of His Son. This is the treasure to which Paul points his audience.
We, too, need to take note of the riches we have in Christ as believers. For we who were condemned sinners, now stand before God as righteous, joint-heirs with His Son. This is the quintessential rags to riches story that ought to make us eternally grateful to God.