Henry David Thoreau once said, "The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it." What is the price you'd pay for something you really, really wanted? Would it be only "up to" a certain amount, or would you keep extending yourself time and time again until you got what it was you were after in the first place? I wonder what would have happened to us if God would have taken the tact of just paying "up to" this point and then not being willing to go any further - would any of us really have understood or embraced grace? Likely not!
When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
The life of Christ given on our behalf declares just how much God wants each of us - enough to give the life of the one closest to his heart! As our passage points out, it wasn't because we were some sparkling jewel on the shelf, but rather we were tarnished brass hidden from view most of the time! We may not have known it at the time, but there was actually a "bidding war" going on over us! You see, God said he'd pay the price, we said we'd figure out a way to make ourselves worth more, and Satan was none too happy to let God's bid win out!
Thoreau also said, "What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lives within us." If we are to fully understand the price God was willing to pay on our behalf, we need only consider what life without Christ at the center is really like. For what lives within us is what matters. If Christ was willing to become the price of our life transformation, then why is it we continually tell ourselves and others that we are not worthy of the price he paid? The one who pays the price is the one most able to determine if the price paid was "worth it", isn't that true?
The price paid was exorbitant in our eyes - for most of would seldom give our lives for the ones we love and who love us back, let alone give our lives for anyone who is too caught up in their own lives to even realize how much they are loved and desired. The sacrifice of Christ isn't understood in the mind - it is understood in the heart and the spirit. Our lives weren't much to look upon apart from him - but in his eyes, they were diamonds in the rough! But...think about it for a moment - there WAS a bidding war for us! Some would deny it, but even WE got in on the challenge of seeing what "price" would be declared to be "good enough" to purchase our lives.
Thank God our lives didn't go to the loudest bidder, for I think things may have ended up much worse for us if we actually won the bid, or worse yet, Satan! The price paid was indeed higher than anyone could imagine, but it was the price declared from the beginning to be what sin demanded - and the price prepared was the price paid! Just sayin!