This verse presents a strange picture. It presents the picture of an ordinary container. Not a beautiful, expensive, ornamental vase that people display in their homes. It’s the picture of a common clay pot used for ordinary purposes. Why a clay pot? God fixed it so people’s attention would be drawn not to the container, but to the extraordinary contents inside.
“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels…” Apparently, God does not understand modern merchandising techniques. In modern merchandising, packaging is everything. Advertisers have discovered that packaging sells. In some instances, the packaging of a product is more expensive than the product itself. For example, about 60% of the cost of perfume goes toward the box and bottle containing the fragrance.
But God deposits spiritual treasure in earthen vessels. Clay jars. He places heavenly treasure in imperfect people like you and me. That tells us it isn’t the container, but what is in the container that counts. Yes, God loves you deeply. You are special to Him. But God wants the attention drawn not to the packaging, but to the treasure. It’s the treasure that is life-changing!
What is this extraordinary treasure? Peter said it’s the hope that is in you (1 Peter 3:15). It’s the hope we have in Jesus Christ (Col. 1:27). It’s the hope (assurance) of sins forgiven, peace with God, purpose in life, and promise for the future. It’s also the hope that God can bring meaning out of a mess. He can restore the broken, and lift up the fallen. He can do the undoable! To those caught in the mental trap of despair, hope is a priceless treasure.
This is where we come in. As born again believers in Jesus Christ, we are carriers of hope to the hopeless! It’s important to note that the treasure is not diminished by the ordinary container. The ordinary container is made valuable by the treasure. God has entrusted a great treasure to you. That means God can use you because He had given you a great gift - the treasure of hope!
We are earthen vessels, but we have a heavenly treasure! So be an ambassador of hope. Share the treasure that is in you with someone in need.
Pastor Todd Weston