No, You Are Not of Infinite Worth

David Burchard Doctrine, Writings 1 Comment

No. You are not of infinite worth. And I’m not calling you out uniquely. I am not of infinite worth either. No mere human is. So let’s just get over ourselves.

Have you ever claimed, or heard, such a thing? I think some self-help preacher must have started saying it, to the great pleasure of his hearers. Or maybe Charles Finney. Then it has been said so often that I think many Christians have picked it up without critical, Scriptural thought.

Either way, it doesn’t make sense; nor does it have any Scriptural backing.

Man is a finite being. The maximum value of a finite being can only be finite. The essentially finite is incapable of containing anything infinite.

Furthermore, to assert that man has infinite value is to say that there is no limit to his value! What a stupid, and often unintentional, blasphemy! Only God has claim to limitless value, for he alone is God. Man is not on his level, nor should he pretend to be.

“But,” one might counter, “man is made in the image of God. He has infinite worth and value as an image bearer of God!”

Yes, man is made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27-28). But to say therefore he has infinite worth is an unestablished and absurd inference. Man is made in the image of God. His nature as man is that of an image bearer. Therefore man has immense value, the highest value of all in the created order. But the created order is a finite order, with the Infinite One who created it righteously presiding over it.

“But,” the self-esteemed might rebut, “Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the God Man, the King of kings and Lord of lords died for men, showing man’s infinite worth. Jesus, of infinite worth, died for man, of infinite worth.”

Yet again, such an argument is humanistically sound only, not hermeneutically sound even slightly. Have you not read of God’s purpose of election, the Son acting on the cross consistently with the will of his Father? God has chosen a people for salvation apart from any condition in them. His is an unconditional election, according to his own magnanimous wisdom. At the cross we see not a “good purchase” made by God, Christ’s blood the currency in the transaction. No. At the cross we see man’s wretchedness, and the love and justice and righteousness and splendor and magnificence of the God who would celebrate himself in the salvation of his people. The cross is amazing not because of the infinite worth of those died for, but because of the unique infinite worth of the Lamb who there was slain.

“But,” the response might come with quivering chin held high in a final attempt at coherent resistance before knowing defeat and maintaining a flawed position out of mere stubborn emotionalism, “Christians are bound for heaven, where they will live forever in glory. What say you? Is this infinite life not a reflection of at least the Christian’s infinite worth in glory?”

No, it is not. The Christian doesn’t have infinite life in glory. He has eternal life in glory. This is specifically in reference to time. The life of the Christian never ends in glory, but is marvelously forever. There he will enjoy the fullest life he can in accord with the will of God; but he will still be finite creature, enjoying forever his labor to further and further comprehend his Maker, Rescuer, and Ruler, a task that will never end, as it shall be pursued by the finite before the Infinite.

Man is amazing. Truly. God has made him so. But let’s stop with the silly, God-insulting man-aggrandizement.

God, alone, is the one of infinite worth.

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