This a view from Edwards Point, the mountain bluff above where I grew up and the pinnacle of every hiking trip I made as a kid.
This is the Tennessee River Gorge. Just across the river is Elder Mountain, where my grandfather hid from revenuers.
To the right is Prentice Cooper Game Reserve. The Cumberland Trail weaves its way through there, down from the top of the mountain, down across the creek, then up to where this scene depicts.
I grew up in the community of Suck Creek. Just out of view, just below the rock bluff, the creek would feed the river. Up until a hundred or so years ago, during hard rain the creek and the river would create a powerful whirlpool capable of pulling small boats under and stopping paddle wheelers.
It was only after a system of dams were built along the Tennessee River (operated by TVA), that the river was tamed enough for safe navigation.
This is also where my Cherokee ancestors on my paternal grandmother’s side resided. They were the ones who actually attacked the early settlers of Nashville when their boats were stuck in the “suck.”
The mountains and the river will always be in my blood. The peaceful drift of the water. The fresh air of old-growth forests. The legends and unforgettable scary bedtime stories from the old-timers.
Unfortunately, much has changed over the last decade. Much of where I spent my childhood and teen years are unrecognizable. Time has exacted a heavy toll from both progress and neglect. And where there was family land that outsiders feared to visit, now there’s million-dollar homes where outsiders moved to “preserve” the beauty.
Yet, I still remember. I still dream. I still imagine. That will never change. Time will only make the memories sweeter and the stories even better.
If you think the title for this post was long, get ready for some seriously beyond-the-normal word count 🙂
Up until this Sunday evening, I had never preached a sermon or taught the Bible straight from a manuscript. This was the first time.
The only reason I did this was because a shut-in lady requested that I send her written transcripts so that she could take the time to read what I was preaching and be able to make notes and take her time through it. She said that she was really interested in Ephesians and wanted to do more than just listen on Facebook.
So, it took a little while to write it up, but the process, as I expected, was not only refreshing and fun (yes, fun), but it did cause me to hone my focus and build a better foundation for other doctrines yet to be discussed.
So, what I’m going to do for you guys is post the written text of the sermon. However, should you want to actually watch the video on Facebook, you can go to our church’s Facebook page and watch it there. It is @BethlehemBaptistWarthen. Or, I guess I could just go ahead and post the link. Why make it difficult, right?
Sunday Evening, Feb. 28, 2021 Bethlehem Baptist, Warthen, GA Pastor Anthony Baker Ephesians 2, Pt. 1
I have not preached a sermon from this passage, yet. However, since I will be preaching it this coming Sunday night, I might as well do my best to write it down for you. I pray that it is a blessing and an encouragement.
As we begin looking at chapter two of Ephesians, note that it can be divided up into three or more, maybe even five different word pictures. In other words, the Apostle Paul uses words, he uses illustrations, he draws pictures in our minds with words to help us understand, a little better, at least, the deep mysteries of salvation and the work of the power of Christ in us.
The first section can be seen in verses 1-10. In these verses Paul paints the picture of dead bodies being raised to life, not of their own power, nor by anything good they could do, but by the grace of God.
The second section can be seen in verses 11 and 12, followed by a third in verses 13-18. The second section illustrates the division that Gentiles once had with the Jews and the covenants of God. He does this as he brings up the issue of circumcision. In the third section, Paul mixes metaphors as he illustrates the bringing in of Gentiles through the picture of the “middle wall” being torn down and the making of one body out of two which led to peace with God. We will get to these things in more detail in time.
Then, in a fourth section, Paul references citizenship, followed by comparing us to building blocks in a holy temple built on top of the foundations laid by the holy prophets, Jesus Christ being the Chief Cornerstone.
In a sort of humorous kind of way we can almost laugh at the words of Paul in the beginning verses of chapter three when he says that because of all these previous descriptions of such a great mystery, previously hidden from those in other ages (3:5), he has become a “minister” (3:7) to us of the “unsearchable riches of Christ”! Well, hallelujah! I’m glad, Paul! Because a lot of us are already confused. Amen?
But it was important for you to know these things – what Paul is doing with his words – so that you don’t single out one illustration or metaphor and build a false doctrine around it. Again, this is why I always stress context, context, context! Without studying Scripture in the context of the whole connecting passage – in this case, from verse one of chapter two to verse seven of chapter three – we might miss the whole point that the author is trying to make and possibly make a major mountain out of a minor metaphor.
So, let’s now go to the first verse in chapter two:
Ephesians 2:1 KJV – And you [hath he quickened], who were dead in trespasses and sins;
Before we do any further reading, it will be very helpful to once again look at some words. If we misunderstand the words that are written here by Paul, but translated into English – and old English, at that – then we could easily misunderstand the meaning of the text and even fall prey to bad theology.
The first word we should look at is the word “quickened.”
Now, what is interesting is that if you are looking at a King James Version you will see that this word, actually several words, is in italics. The reason, as we have discussed before, is that the word is not in the original text, but the translators added it to help clarify the original text. What IS there is simply the Greek word ὤν (spelled “on” in English). All it means is that the “You” being spoken to “are.”
Yes, the Greek word on implies being, existence, and such. So, what Paul was really saying has been better translated in other versions such as the NIV, ESV, and CSB. The NIV reads: “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins.”
Of course, this is not changing the Bible; this is what the Bible originally said. What the translators of the King James Version did was try to clue us in to a truth that is mentioned farther down in Paul’s description of those who are saved. It is all the way down in verse 5 where he finally uses the word that is rightfully translated as “quicken.”
Ephesians 2:5 KJV – Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
Back to the first verse, now. Paul, as we have already seen, is speaking to Christians. He is speaking to those who are “in Christ.” He is speaking to those who had been lost and now are saved. But it is in these verses where he describes what being lost is really like. What it really is.
The next word we will look at is the word “dead.”
Paul said that “you” (you could even apply that to us and say “we’) were DEAD in trespasses and sins. Yet, when we look at verse 2 we see something interesting. He says, that while we were dead, we “walked.” What? Dead people walk? That’s what he said!
Could it be that when Paul was talking about being dead, he didn’t mean it the same way we understand the word to mean, at least when we talk about dead people in the grave? I think it’s important that we think about this, for it makes a huge difference in how we look at other teachings of Paul, especially in the book of Romans, chapters eight and nine.
The Greek word Paul uses in verse two that is translated in English as “dead” is the word νεκρός (nekros). Have you ever heard of the word “necromancy”? Well, that’s what people do when they try to talk to the dead. Halloween kind of stuff. However, if you notice, necromancy comes from the word nekro, which means “corpse.” A necromancer is one who uses witchcraft to reanimate the dead, that is, to bring a dead corpse back to life as a zombie, or something, or to talk with them to discover the future. Paul is telling us that when we were still in sin, before we were saved, we were corpses – dead people – dead bodies. That is why it took the power of God to give us new life, to bring life to these dead bodies, and that’s what he meant when he said that we are “quickened” to new life.
And, by the way, God doesn’t need witchcraft to raise the dead. And I highly, highly doubt any necromancer ever pulled off a genuine Lazarus story.
But that brings me back to verse two, and even verse three… if we were nothing but lifeless corpses, how then did we “walk according to the course of this world” and have a “conversation in times past”?
What we need to understand before we go any further, which is why I bring up these words, is that Paul was using figurative speech. Paul was not trying to say that we were literally dead and lifeless like a dead body in a casket. Yes, he used the term, but it was meant to be a picture of a larger truth: that we were incapable of living the Christian life, the life of the Christ through the power of the Spirit, if we were “dead,” slaves to sin, full of the world’s filth, wanting nothing of the things of God.
Dead people don’t talk, walk, have conversations, or anything like that. A dead body just lies there and rots. Gross, isn’t it? Yet, still, it is only a picture. You and I weren’t dead bodies. However, we were “dead” in that we had not been transformed by the life of Jesus. And as dead people can’t do anything, not even dig themselves out of the ground, neither can the sinner who is “dead in trespasses and sins” work his way out of death into life.
But God… Ephesians 2:4 starts with two of the most beautiful words in all the Bible – “But God.” You see, we were lost and on our way to hell… but God! We were dead in our trespasses and sins… but God! We were rotting away in the filth of the world… BUT GOD, who is RICH IN MERCY, for His GREAT LOVE wherewith He loved us, QUICKENED us together with Christ (verse 5)!
Do you know the song “Love Lifted Me”?
I was sinking deep in sin, far from the peaceful shore. Buried deeply, stained within, sinking to rise no more. But… But the Master of the Sea… But GOD!… heard my despairing cry! From the waters lifted me, now safe am I!
Love lifted me! Love lifted me! !When nothing else could help, Love lifted me!
Love lifted me! Love lifted me! When nothing else could help… when my works, my deadness, my lifeless separation from God, my sin, my dirty, dead self couldn’t help…Love! Grace! Mercy! Lifted me up to sit in heavenly places in Christ Jesus!
Love lifted me!
Before we close tonight’s study, I want to quickly move on to verses 8 and 9, some of the more famous verses we know.
Ephesians 2:8-9 KJV – For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Do you understand what these verses are saying? It amazes me that they can be so clear, so understandable, yet so many people in Christian churches teach that you have to earn, you have work for your salvation. In reality, that’s NOT Christian. That’s like every other religion in the world. If being saved had any need of us “doing” any work of any kind, other than simply placing our faith in Jesus and accepting the free gift of salvation which He bought with His blood, then we might as well say we could have been there with Jesus on the first day of Creation and said, God, let me help out the Word, because He is not sufficient to bring everything into existence by Himself, you know. He needs my help! What can I do? Do you want me to sell something? Do you want me to visit something? Do you want me to join something? Do you want me to help the Logos, the Word, Jesus with his faith in His own words?
C’mon, God, you know the Word can’t create the universe out of nothing and bring into being what isn’t unless I help! You do know that, don’t you?
Yes, I know that sounds silly, but please bear with me and consider just one more word for tonight: ποίημα (poiēma), pronounced poy’-ay-mah.
Notice in verse 10, “For we are his WORKMANSHIP…” That is the word poy’-ay-mah.
Paul only uses this word twice in all of his letters; here, and in Romans 1:20.
Romans 1:20 KJV – “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made,[G4161] [even] his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:”
Can I share with you one more passage?
John 1:1-3 KJV – In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
God didn’t need us to create the universe and all that is in it. Neither does He need us to save ourselves – lest we boast. Amen!
And, OH, what God has done for us! He has set us up with Jesus in the heavenlies so we can have a high enough seat in the stands to view the entire display of God’s grace! But that parade alone will take ages! Hallelujah!
Today, the company wants to stop leaning so heavily into this traditional family structure. “Culture has evolved,” she tells Fast Company. “Kids want to be able to represent their own experiences. The way the brand currently exists—with the “Mr.” and “Mrs.”—is limiting when it comes to both gender identity and family structure.”
Have you ever wondered what it would take for the average person to lose his mind? Would it be a tragic loss or overwhelming circumstance that would break him? Torture? Deprivation?
What about the unceasing and incessant madness of the liberal Left and their determination to swab away all cultural norms from the deck of this sinking ship?
Mr. Potato Head and Mrs. Potato Head are cultural icons. They even walk and talk in the “Toy Story” movies! Yet, because of the desire to let 3-year-old brains shape the future, Hasbro wants to further confuse them with not only a plastic toy potato, but one that can’t even decide which potato potty to enter.
“Culture has evolved,” they say. Tell me, toy geniuses, what is there about evolving that includes the deconstruction of the structural fabric which has been the framework and bedrock of society?
Oh, I get it – it’s a money thing, right? We want to appeal to the little crumb crunchers whose mommies and baby daddies have either ditched their responsibilities and commitments or unstitched and re-stitched their baby-making parts. We want to enable – for the dollar, mind you – a whole new generation of gender-confused part-swappers because leaning too heavily on the current traditional family structure is not good for the brand.
I don’t know how far I am away from losing it, but one thing’s for sure: Hasbro has mashed potatoes for brains.
If there is one thing about living down here in middle Georgia, it is the abundance of deer. Rumor has it, if you’ve never destroyed at least one vehicle by hitting a deer, then you’re probably in cahoots with them.
No joke, on any given evening there are so many deer out nibbling road-side grass and conversing with each other across the street that it’s nearly impossible to travel a quarter-mile without seeing several.
To give you just one example, last night I was driving home from a neighboring town and saw (there could have been more) 13 deer on an 8-mile stretch of road. I saw probably double that amount on the previous twenty. That’s a LOT of deer!
Locked Down for Deer
All this talk about deer leads no leads me to the story I want to tell you about last night’s trip home.
Like I said, last night there were a lot of four-legged bumper bashers getting reacquainted in the moonlight. Because of this, I was very careful to maintain a slower speed – even slower than the speed limit – in order to give me a longer reaction time.
All of a sudden I saw a family of 4 or 5 (it could have been a club, a harem, or a dance crew…I don’t know) standing and facing each other from both sides of the two-lane road. Then, after a quick glance at me, then back at his/her crew, then back at me the dear decided that the best time to cross the road was right at the very moment I was passing him.
Incidentally, cats do the same thing. They wait until the very last second to cross the street right in front of you. Why do they do that? Why can’t they just wait till we pass? Why does it have to be RIGHT THEN?? It’s like for some reason they think they will never have another chance ever again – EVER!
“Now! Do it NOW, Puss!” cries a flea-bitten rat chaser from across the road. Puss sees the bright lights approaching and realizes he’s already on his 8th life – he can’t die on this side of the road, not tonight! There’s more life to be lived and lost on the other side with Kitten, Mitten, and Tabbytha. So, terrified and desperate, with all the speed he can muster Puss bounds across the street to meet up with his friends and lovers.
But I was no dummy, I tell you! I could tell what Bambi was about to do, so I applied pressure to my brake peddle. Then, just as I expected, he waited until almost the last second to jump in front of me!
I stood on my brake peddle and the 2-ton 1995 Mercury Grand Marquis’ anti-lock brakes did their job flawlessly.
And everything in my front and rear seats, including everything UNDER my seats, came to the front floor of my car.
That’s when I made a surprising discovery! I found my lost coffee mug!
What’s the moral of the story? It’s pretty simple, really.
Sometimes it takes a sudden, unplanned, emergency-slamming-on-of-the-brakes kind of stop to help us find things we thought were lost forever.
I’m thankful I didn’t hit that stupid deer. But I’m also thankful that I now have my favorite mug back on my desk and doing its job.
All it took was hitting the brakes for just a moment, slowing down, and re-evaluating the circumstances, such as was this trip really necessary?
Have a great day, guys! Be safe. Stay faithful.
In just a moment I will be sharing this sermon, word for word, through a translator to a congregation in Pakistan. May God bless His Word and may the Church be edified.
Good morning, everyone! I am very happy to be able to worship with you again!
First, I would like to say that you are always in our prayers.
Second, I would like to thank you so much for your prayers and your friendship.
I would also like to tell you that our church here in the United States, in the state of Georgia, will pray for you in our services later today.
And one more thing before we look at this morning’s Scripture. The Church in America may need a Revival, but it is not dead. We are strong and will continue to encourage the Church in the rest of the world.
Please allow me to pray…
Last night I spoke with your pastor about the subject of this sermon.
He told me that last year he preached from 1 John 4:19.
Well, that’s the passage I want to start with this morning.
Please read 1 John 4:19.
Today is Valentine’s Day in America. It is a day when many, many men spend a lot of money on flowers and chocolate candy.
Valentine’s Day is the day when we celebrate love, especially the love men and women have for each other.
In many cultures marriages are arranged, but that rarely happens here in America.
In our culture, marriage comes after a man and a woman fall in love with each other and want to spend their lives together.
Of course, as you can imagine, the love of people grow cold, because the love they felt was not real love, only affection, maybe only lust.
Regardless, Valentine’s Day is a day when women are treated very, very special. Because they ARE!
Now, you may be wondering how 1 John 4:19 relates to how special women are.
It is because when the Bible says we love Jesus because he first loved us, we are reminded of the marriage relationship.
All throughout the New Testament the Church is pictured as the Bride of Christ.
The Apostle Paul spends most of Ephesians chapter 5 talking about how Christian marriage is to be a picture of Jesus and the Church.
And one thing should be obvious when we read Paul’s letter – men are to treat their wives with honor, respect, and unconditional love.
In Ephesians 5:25 Paul tells men, “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the Church and gave himself for it.”
What does that mean?
For one thing, it means that women are valuable! It means that they are to be loved! It means that wives are not slaves!
How did Jesus love his Bride, the Church? What did he do for her?
Yes, he “GAVE HIMSELF.” What does that mean? He gave his own life for the Church.
And do you realise that Jesus loved us before we were even lovable? He loved us while we were even sinners!
Romans 5:8 says, “While we were yet sinners, Christ DIED for us!”
Jesus had pity on us. Jesus knew we needed true love, not just emotion or lust.
Let me give you 5 reasons the Love of Jesus is better than the love of any human.
It doesn’t matter what we look like.
It doesn’t matter how old we are.
It doesn’t matter if we know how to talk to each other.
It doesn’t matter if we have money or land.
It doesn’t matter about our past.
The Book of Isaiah, Chapter 64, says that our righteousness is like filthy rags. There is nothing righteous or holy about us without Christ.
But Jesus doesn’t care what we look like – He still loves us.
So, men, you should love your wives as Christ loves the Church! If she isn’t more beautiful now than she was when you married her, don’t blame her – blame yourself!
Jesus loves us no matter how old we are. In other words, He loves us even when we cannot do anything to contribute.
Even the old, the wounded, the crippled…. Jesus loves you!
And what about our communication skills? What if we don’t know how to say the right things?
According to the Bible, that’s what the Holy Spirit is for! He speaks for us when we don’t know what to say! Isn’t the love of God wonderful?
What about money? What about property? Did Jesus demand a dowery to love us? Of course not! He paid it all with His blood!
And do you think your past is too bad for Jesus to love you? It’s not!
Do you realize that Jesus knew you before you were born, for as David said, “He knit me in my mother’s womb.”
Yet, even then, He could see your whole life in front of you. He could see all the sin you would commit. And yet he still said, “Come unto me!”
Ladies, Christian men should treat you as Jesus treats the Church. Like the woman of Proverbs 31, if you fear the Lord, you should be praised!
God never intended the Church, the Bride of Jesus, to be a door mat for men to wipe their feet on.
Jesus never beat us or whipped the Church when she sinned. No! He took the beating and the stripes for us! He bore our shame on the Cross!
So, isn’t the love of Jesus wonderful?
We love him, not because we wanted to, but because we can’t help it!
And men, husbands, the Bible tells you to LOVE YOUR WIVES. If you love them like Jesus loved the Church, they will love you, too!
Dear sisters in Christ, you are so special in the eyes of God!
Jesus loves you and died for you the same as He did for any man.
You are daughters of the King of the Universe! You are also co-heirs with Christ, adopted into the Royal family of Heaven! You are princesses!
Do you realize that the Bible never puts women down? It never says they are less valuable than men. It never, not once, says that men are better than women.
Who carried Jesus in her womb? A young woman. Mary.
God didn’t send Jesus in a chariot of gold, but he trusted a young girl to carry Jesus when he was tiny and weak. He didn’t trust the baby Jesus to a general in an army, but a simple, young woman!
Who was the first Christian in the Western world? It was a woman, Lydia?
Who did the Apostle Paul trust to deliver the letter to the Romans? A woman, Phebe! That’s in Romans 16 verse 1 and 2.
Who helped fund the ministry of the Disciples and even Jesus when he was on earth? Women of means, women with wealth. In other words, there were business women in the Bible, like Lydia, the seller of purple, who helped the Church.
Dear sisters in Christ, you are loved by God. You are valuable. You are special. Don’t ever let the world tell you different.
Hey, guys! Just taking a moment out from some sermon prep (gotta preach to the Pakistani church at 1 a.m.) to let you know what I think about my wife.
She is the BEST WIFE EVER!
How do I know this? How can I make such a bold and absolute claim?
Because it’s the truth.
You see, it’s obvious she the best wife ever because she loves me. Not only does she love me, but she has continued to love me since June of 1996! She has loved me, remained faithful to me, and only once or twice thought about having me committed.
That’s no joke.
Proverbs 18:22 – Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD.
I’m the “whoso.” I might have been a so-and-so many times over the years, but my wife stuck with me.
Yesterday was her birthday. Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day (for which she was named). Do you know what she did for me? She ordered a selection of 8 high-quality cigars! Why? For my health? NO. Just because she loves me.
By the way, don’t hate on my cigars… I only have one a year, or so. One would be more likely to get cancer from a chest X-ray.
Valerie loves me, and here’s the proof:
She cooks for me.
She takes care of the bills (because she’s an accountant)
She still laughs at my jokes.
She still thinks I am handsome.
She tells me she loves me, like ALL the time.
She takes care of me when I’m sick or injured.
She looks out for my best interests, even at the expense of her own.
She never talks bad about me, not even to her mother.
She takes notes when I preach and even thinks I should be on Blue Letter Bible! I don’t know where she gets that idea, though.
She makes sure I take my medicine.
She makes all my doctor appointments.
She not only washes and dries my clothes, but she folds my underwear and puts it away.
There’s a sparkle in her eye when she looks at me, especially when I come home.
She loves it when I sing, especially to her.
She loves to play games with me, even when I play to win.
When she makes me a peanut butter and jelly sandwich she takes the time to cut it in half.
She wishes she could be a better wife.
So, you ;may think you’ve got the best wife in the world, but I’ll support your right to be wrong.
Valerie, thank you for loving Jesus and for loving me. I love you, too.
I’m not going to comment too much, but I do think this is potentially the best Valentine’s Day sermon I’ve every preached 😉
Seriously, even though this was a little humorous at times, maybe even a little to transparent, the truth that Jesus loves us more than any other love we can comprehend.
The following video is from our church Facebook page and was recorded live. Therefore, what you are going to see is unedited. If you want to skip forward past initial comments and prayer requests that will speed things up.
But here is the outline, should you want to know what’s inside:
Within the wristwatch-wearing community – those who wear timepieces, not computers – there is a term which describes the watch (or watches) you someday hope to own. These watches, often expensive and/or rare, are called “grails.”
A few watches immediately come to mind when we think of “grails.”
Rolex Submariner ($15,000 avg.)
Omega Speedmaster ($5,000 avg.)
The Grand Seiko “Snowflake” ($6k-$7k avg.)
Rolex Datejust ($6k – $15k and more…a lot more)
Tudor Black Bay 58 ($4,000 avg.)
Grail watches, depending on a person’s dreams and aspirations, vary greatly. However, what is typically the same is that they are difficult to obtain and often prohibitively expensive. And we’re not even talking about upper-end luxury watches that can cost over $100,000.
But not all grails are expensive. Some are simply rare. For example, those who collect Timex watches have different models they would love to obtain. My first Timex grail was a 1967 Marlin “dot-dash.” I picked one up for $67 off eBay, but only after I lost a bid on another a few weeks before. Other collectors dream of that perfect vintage Timex dive watch.
Just recently I was thrilled to obtain a grail. For months I had been going to farmer’s markets and posting paintings online, all to generate enough money to buy a Seiko SRPE 55. When the last painting sold brought in what I needed, online shopping I a-went! Like a Knight of the Round Table with a key to the gate, I charged the virtual castle and captured the Japanese-made legend.
But let me point out a few things before you think I spent ten thousand dollars on something. First, the watch I bought, the Seiko SRPE 55, cost me less than $200. It could have cost me $275+, but I shopped around and got the best deal. Also, every dime I spent on the purchase of this watch was earned from selling my paintings, prints, and an old Timex or two.
One reason I wanted this watch was because how similar it was to the Tudor Heritage Black Bay 41 and 36, watches costing around $3,000. The Tudor could be considered a true grail watch for me, but I can’t justify spending that much. Therefore, when I saw the striking similarity between the Seiko and the Tudor, my decision was made. And, I didn’t have to save for 10 years to make the purchase!
Are there any other grails I want to buy one day? Honestly, not at this time (no pun intended, but it works).
Right now, my main goal is to finish my doctoral assignments, prepare sermons, visit people, and be a husband, dad, grandfather, and son. As I find old Timex pieces to add to my collection, I will take them home, clean them up, and work on my watch servicing skills. But what I am not going to do is dream about a watch that could pay for a trip to the Holy Land!
That brings me to my final though about grails: Do people ever think about the futility of what they are seeking?
From where to the term “grail” originate? Well, it comes from the word used to describe the cup from which Jesus shared the wine with His disciples at the Last Supper. That cup is often referred to as the “Holy Grail.”
You’ve probably seen other things besides watches referred to as the “holy grail” of one thing or another. It’s a term meant to describe something as the ultimate, most-elusive prize to be had. This stems all the way back to when legends described the cup Jesus used as one made of gold, encrusted with precious stones, and even capable of mystical powers.
But what was the “holy grail”? Would it not have been a simple cup made of wood, stone, or clay? Most certainly it was simple, lacked ornamentation, and had no other significance other than that it was handled by the Word made flesh, the Creator of time.
What made the grail “holy” was that was set apart unto a holy work. Other than that, it was humble. A humble grail.
So, that brings me back full circle to watches. Why do we have “grail” watches? In reality, just like the elusive Holy Grail of old, how many fortunes are lost in pursuit of something glittery, shiny, hand (of man) crafted, with no inherent power other than the ability to do what it was designed to do?
It seems very ironic to me that we want those glittery cups and not the humble one. We lust after the opulence of the Tudors and scoff at the utilitarian simplicity and dependability of the lowly Timex.
Even more ironic is that the very “grail” for which the Indian Jones’ of the world search is the very same cup (metaphorically speaking) that Jesus asked, “If it be Thy will, let this cup pass from me.” He knew what it was going to cost Him, but He wasn’t purchasing it for Himself; it was meant to be a gift for those who could NEVER afford to purchase it.
Therefore, what makes the grail precious? It’s monetary value? The gold and jewels? The intricate, fine-crafted details? Or could you be satisfied with something simple?
To be honest, the most precious watches in my collection, those for which no price could buy them away from me, are those which my wife and daughters gave me as gifts. They are irreplaceable, even if they only cost $20.
I’m wearing a $30 Timex MK1 Steel on a canvas strap now, and I really like this watch! But I’m going to swap it out for my new Seiko before I leave the house.
I wonder what Jesus would wear.
Your thoughts and comments mean a lot to me, so let me know what you think 😊