The treasures of kings have sometimes been so vast, as to
become proverbial. And yet, what were they but gold or stones dug out of the
bowels of the earth, which, amassed to ever so great a sum, could neither
give contentment, ensure health, nor lengthen life? But there is a portion
of a diviner nature, and infinitely more excellent, which falls to the share
of every child of God—and God himself is this stupendous portion! "The Lord
is my portion, says my soul."
Now, the astonishing wonder here is, that God, in all his
perfections, should condescend, through his Son—to be the portion of his
people. But this wonder is not alone—but is joined with another, that is in
a manner more surprising still, expressed in these words—"The Lord's
portion is his people, Israel is the lot of his inheritance."
We know how highly we esteem that which we account our
portion. And the pious breathing of the saint is, "Whom have I in heaven but
you? and there is none upon earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my
heart may fail—but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever."
Then, may we not see what value he sets upon his people, that he, who
possesses all things, and has all perfection in himself, should call them
A rich man may condescend to be the helper and friend of
a poor man—but will scarcely allow the pauper to be of great account to
himself. But with God it is otherwise, to the praise of his glorious
grace—which is not less astonishing in receiving than in giving. He gives
the treasures of eternity, which enrich forever; and receives the ciphers of
time, which cannot profit him at all. He gives himself to be ours in his
infinite excellences forever, and receives us, in all our needs and
infirmities, to be his for evermore. We so not know whether he is most
glorious in accepting the lispings of faith, "You are my God,"—or in
returning the mutual "You are my people."
Because God is the portion of our soul, we have hope; and
because he sees the travail of his soul, he is satisfied. O what
condescension is this, not only to bow down to give himself away to us—but
to take us up to himself! Let philosophers dream on of ten thousand
inhabited worlds, yet, among them all—the Lord's portion and inheritance is
his redeemed people! The heavens are his throne, the earth his footstool—but
his portion are dearer to him than both—purchased at an amazing price, and
preserved by almighty power—to an immensity of bliss!
Precious and costly things are in the peculiar treasures
of kings; how noble, then, and precious must they be, whom the eternal King
of kings has chosen to himself for his peculiar treasure, for whom he will
give his Son for their ransom!
Again, a treasure is that which is laid up for time to
come; then God will never cast off his own inheritance, give up with his
portion, or throw away his treasure—but reserve all to eternity!
Finally, if God is the portion of his saints—why do they
struggle to fill their coffers with perishing things? And why so disquieted
if they do not succeed?