Monday, April 29, 2024


Anita Clark – Pastor
Grace Chapel, Carbondale, Kansas

The ultimate purpose of this Church Age is to prepare a group of redeemed human beings to be a Bride for Jesus Christ.  The work of the Holy Spirit is going on today in the lives of believers  who are yielding to the working of God.  Apostle Paul speaks of this in Phiiippians 3:7-14. A careful study shows that Paul was not speaking of gaining salvation, when he writes, “I have suffered the loss of all things and do count them but dung that I may win Christ.”  He is speaking of a work that will change him into a completely yielded child of God with a close place with the Lord Jesus.  This brings the believer to a place of complete surrender to the Lord, where all is “counted loss” for Christ.

Let us consider the phrase , “...that I may win Christ.”  No where in the Bible does it teach that we win salvation by any good works. In fact the opposite is taught i.e. Titus 3:5 -”Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He has saved us.” Ephesians 2:8-9 says,”For by grace are ye saved by faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not of works lest any man should boast.” No where does the Scripture say we must strive to gain salvation to become a child of God.  Paul sums up his desire in verse 14, “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” 

In other portions of Paul’s writings He speaks of the race course likening to our spiritual day by day journey to achieve this place as the winner (I Corinthians 9:24-27).  The wonderful place we desire is to be yielded to Christ completely so that He can work in us by the Holy Spirit to prepare us to be the Bride of Christ.  Paul speaks specifically about this in II Corinthians 11:1-3, “Would to God you would bear with me in my folly, and indeed bear with me.  For I am jealous over you with a Godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin  to Christ.  But I fear, lest by any means as the serpent beguiled Eve through subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.”

God has made provision that every believer in Christ could be in that company.  The sad thing is that not all will avail themselves of this glorious place.  Satan deceives believers and lulls many to sleep.  (I Thess. 4:13-5:8). The Lord warned that we are to watch and be ready for His soon appearing.  In Revelation 19:1-10 we see a beautiful scene in heaven, when all the Church is gathered unto the Lord.  Not all who are there are the Bride.  Read the passage.  In verses 7—8 we see the “great multitude” introducing the Bride, who had “made herself ready.”  The Lord Jesus came to earth to seek a virtuous Bride.

The purpose of this introduction about the Bride company is to talk further about a parable Jesus spoke of in Matthew 13:45-46 - “The Goodly Pearl.”  In verse 45 “the Merchant man “ speaks of Christ who came to the world “seeking goodly pearls.”  God has made provision for each believer to be His “pearl of great price.”  The word “goodly” in Gk.  Means “beautiful, good literally or morally virtuous.” The Lord Jesus came to earth to seek a Virtuous Bride.” Proverbs 31:10 says, “Who can find a virtuous woman, for her price is far above rubies.”  The word “virtuous’ in the Hebrew language means “strength, valor, and moral character.”  Jesus came down to call a people who would yield to Him completely and love Him supremely.  He gave up all He had with the Father to find this pearl.  

Verse 46 shows what Jesus Christ did.  “He went.”  “He sold all He had.” and “He bought it.”  The text says He was “seeking goodly pearls.”  This speaks to us that provision  is made for every believer to be that beautiful pearl that Jesus is looking for right now in this Age of Grace.  Here we find, “Who, when He found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that He had, and bought it.” II Corintians 5:21 tells us, “For He  hath made Him sin who knew no sin, for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” He condescended and gave up all that He had with the Father and became a human being in order to die and save us.  That ‘s how greatly He esteemed the “Pearl of great price.”  This pearl represents the Bride of Jesus Christ.  Matthew 13:46 says, “Who, when He had found one pearl of great price.”  Jeus is looking and finding the “virtuous one.” “the only one of her mother” —(Song of Solomon 6:9). mentioned in Proverbs 31:10, this one who captured His attention is “far above rubies.”  Choose now to let the Lord work in you to be ready for this exalted place.

What causes the pearl to grow in the ugly old oyster?  The Lord works from the inside out.  As we yield He does His work in us. “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure.”  Philippians 2:13.  The Clam in the natural depth realizes an irritant bothering her.  It is usually a parasite as an intruder, and not a grain of sand.  This intruder into God’s plan is “sin.”  If the parasite stays in the oyster, it will destroy the oyster. God gave the Oyster a defence mechanism, a fluid to coat the irritant.  Layer upon layer of the coating, called “nacre” is applied until a lustress pearl is formed.  This speaks to us that God is working a little at a time to change us into His image, and make us ready to be the Pearl of Great Price.  We might liken the fluid (nacre) to the Holy Spirit who  is constantly at work to make us into that beautiful pearl.  This is an inward work, often unseen by others. God does the work as we yield to Him.  Our will must be surrendered to Him or His work cannot be finished.  Others may not see the work, (as hidden away in the oyster) but the Lord, the master Workman does, and has promised to finish the work He has begun.  The only thing that hinders this is our will.

He did not look at the ugly shell, or the depths in which we dwell or the worm or parasite of the old nature. He saw the beauty of what we would be when He molded us and His Spirit coated us with the beautiful righteousness of Christ.  “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might be rich.”  II Corinthians  8:9.  Revelation 19:7 says., “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath made herself ready.”  Our job is to yield to His working in us.  Matthew 13:46 says, “Who,when He had found one pearl of great price.”  Jesus is looking and finding the “virtuous one.” This one has captured His attention. Choose now to let the Lord work in you to be ready for this exalted place.