Fresno Central Seventh-day Adventist Church

We have this hope that burns within our hearts

Pastor Daniel Miranda

 Pastor's Devotional#

The Greatest Gift

A basic human need, and our passionate drive is acceptance. Relationships matter more to us than money, or so-called success. We all want to be loved; we deeply desire the acceptance of others. That need was implanted by God himself. When we receive rejection from someone, it hurts us, and we suffer. But there is an even deeper anguish, and it is not feeling accepted by God. Conscience tells us that evil will finally be punished, and in despair we cry out: “Oh wretched man that I am!” (Romans 7:24). The solution to that problem is the gospel, the good news of salvation, through which God seeks to make us “accepted in the Beloved” (Ephesians 1:6). The greatest gift, which in turn meets the greatest need that a human being can receive, is the gift of salvation.

The cost of salvation

 But how much does salvation cost? Is that true that it costs us nothing? The cost of salvation is not measured in money, but in proportion to the Giver of that gift. What has been the most expensive gift you have ever been given? Many times, it is not the cost of the gift, but the level of appreciation that the person giving the gift has towards us. Likewise, no one will ever love God, if they are not convinced that God loves them. And that gift is the greatest demonstration of God's love for us.

We could say that salvation is 'to buy back'. The Bible says: “For thus says the LORD: you have sold yourselves for nothing, and you shall be redeemed without money” (Isaiah 52:3, emphasis added). Eve sold herself for nothing, for a piece of fruit (Genesis 3: 1-6), Esau sold his birthright for nothing, for a bowl of pottage (Genesis 25: 27-34), and so many today are selling their salvation for nothing; they are selling it for a plate of lentils. For some their lentil dish is vices, drugs, alcoholic beverages; for others it is gambling, or women, vanity, fashion, the love of money, the desire for position, or fame, or greatness. How little do we appreciate how valuable salvation is! The popular saying goes well, “what doesn't cost us, let's make it a party”. But the text quoted above gives us hope: “you shall be redeemed without money.” “Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:24, emphasis added). Today this free gift is being offer to you. Will you accept it?


Pastor Daniel Miranda