December 18, 2022•376 words
What are the "dear things" now? Gold, silver, precious stones, bank notes, mines, ships, lands, houses, horses, cars, furniture, food, drink, clothes, and the like. These are the things that are thought valuable; these are the things that command a ready market; these are the things which you can never get below a certain price. He that has a lot of these things is counted a wealthy man. Such is the world!
And what are the "cheap things" now? The knowledge of God, the free salvation of the Gospel, the favor of Christ, the grace of the Holy Spirit, the privilege of being God's son, the title to eternal life, the right to the tree of life, the promise of a room in the Father's House in heaven, the promises of an incorruptible inheritance, the offer of a crown of glory that does not fade away.
These are the things that no man hardly cares for. They are offered to the sons of men without money and without price: they may be had for nothing--freely and generously. Whosoever will may take his share. But, sadly, there is no demand for these things! They go begging. They are scarcely looked at. They are offered in vain. Such is the world!
But a day is coming upon us all when the value of everything will be altered. A day is coming when banknotes will be as useless as rags, and gold will be as worthless as the dust of the earth. A day is coming when thousands will care nothing for the things for which they once lived, and will desire nothing so much as the things which they once despised. The mansions and palaces will be forgotten in the desire of a "house not made with hands." The favor of the rich and great will be remembered no more, in the longing for the favor of the King of kings. The silks, and satins, and velvets, and laces, will be lost sight of in the anxious need of the robe of Christ's righteousness. All will be altered, all will be changed in the great day of the Lord's return. "Many will try to enter in and will not be able to"
—J.C. Ryle, “Self-Exertion” in 'Practical Religion'