Vintage goods – things of timeless quality – hardly go on sale. Even when they do, the price doesn’t drop by much. So to is greatness. As Bishop TD Jakes rightly said, greatness never goes on sale, it costs what it costs. Nobody can achieve anything substantial in this world without paying the bill in full. This is an irrevocable divine law of success.
God said to the Jews, “Rise up, take your journey, and pass over the Valley of the Arnon. Behold, I have given into your hand Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and his land; begin to possess it and contend with him in battle” -Deuteronomy 2:24.
Reading this scripture one must realize that God had indeed made up His mind to hand over king Sihon and his wealth to the Jews. Nevertheless, still the Jews had to contend with him in battle. It is so amazing that God fought all the battles against Pharaoh (through Moses and Aaron) to free the Jews from slavery but every Jewish tribe had to fight individual battles to possess their promised inheritance!
Another instance is the question of Caleb. God promised a forty-year-old Caleb that he would inherit Hebron – one of the most spacious portions of the Promised Land. Forty-five years later Caleb finally took control of his inheritance. However, he had to fight for it. Before he could get the blessing from Joshua to possess his promised land Caleb not only that he had to prove his fitness and willingness for battle, but was also required to actually fight against the king of Hebron and defeat him (Josh. 14:6-14).
We all know that God chose Jesus Christ to be the King of this world. God the Father gave Jesus the name above all names as the Lord of lords and the King of kings. But He did not just present the Kingdom to Jesus for free. Jesus had to pay the ultimate price for that. This is amazing. Jesus was God and the creator of the world but still when He wished to take control of the material world He had to pay for it through service and personal sacrifice.
Perhaps one of the most striking scriptures I have ever come across is this: For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who has faith in him will not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16).
Adam lost control of the world to Satan. By losing control we lost also the eternal life. Because God loved us so much He wanted to restore that control back to us. To do so, he had to buy it back from Satan by the price of his only son Jesus Christ. If God and His son Jesus had to pay for their wealth on earth we can’t get away with material wealth for free.
Jesus told His disciples that if anyone wants to follow Him (emulate His success and rule with Him in His kingdom) one must take his/her own cross – by giving sacrificial service to others.
Greatness is achievable and it’s sweet but it also comes with a hefty price tag.