KEY SCRIPTURE: 1 Peter 1:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
RELEVANCE Lately, I've been looking at the trial of faith, which Peter says is more precious than gold that perishes.
The purity of gold is measured using the karat system. For example, 24-karat gold is pure gold with no other mixed metals. It has 24 parts of gold out of 24 parts total.
Much of the Tabernacle gold was pure. To obtain that standard of purity, it was tried or processed in fire. Gold does not exist in its purest form naturally. After the mining process, the many impurities within it need to be removed—the gold is refined.
For this to happen, the Gold fragments are placed in a crucible—a container that can withstand very high temperatures. This crucible is then placed in a furnace and heated to almost 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit. The gold melts at such a high temperature. It is then transferred to another container, leaving the impurities and other substances floating at the surface. It's a simple process that needs to be done.
Scripture says that our faith is far more precious than gold, yet the process is similar. We find ourselves in a crucible or situation, and the heat is sometimes extreme. The success of the gold's fiery trial is to ensure the removal of impurities. By holding the line or standing fast in God's power, we come out the other end of our heated crucible purer, richer, more valuable, and finer. Our faith being much more precious, goes through many more tirals than gold. As much as we don't like the trials, they are there for a reason. We're on a path to become like Jesus, a path of faithfulness.
God hopes we endure the trials faithfully, yet we often disdain the fire and choose to keep the impurities.
The purifying makes the gold softer, and our hearts also become softer when we endure. That softness enables the Holy Spirit greater access to burn off the humanity He can do without and leave what is useful. As we accept the heat of further trials, more impurities are removed, and we become more valuable to God and people.
Next time you're under the heat of a trial, try and remember this simple illustration and stand firm with Christ through the trial. For change to happen, we must endure the heat. Both gold and our faith do not remain in that crucible forever but just long enough for that particular trial of purifying. We get a break, then prepare for the next one.
PRAYER Thank you, Lord, for placing these illustrations in your Word. It helps me understand great mysteries of myself.
Photo by Olivia Snow