Picture this. You have been given a gift. It is totally unexpected and you didn't do anything to deserve it. You are surprised at the vast cost of the gift and overwhelmed that it was given to you. You have been told that the documents received with the gift are totally true, regardless of what people might say or think. You set about to see what the package contains and excitedly open the box.
There in the box is an old chest that is battered and used. It is large and heavy to move. It's been handed down through the ages to loved ones. You gently remove it from the box and open it with shaking hands. It contains jewelry and gems. The papers that arrive with it describe each piece and tell the story of each article. Each piece is described to be in perfect condition and made of the purest of materials.
You are excited to see all that the chest contains. When you look, your heart beats wildly as you see all the pieces of jewelry and all the splendid stones lying there. Your hand reaches out and begins to sort through the huge assortment of sparkling items. The first thing you pull out and scrutinize is a diamond pin. It is shaped like a star and is encrusted with diamonds, large and small. You sort through the documents and find the one for the "Star of Creation". The document tells the story of the piece and you look at the pin in wonder.
The next piece that you see is a large cross. It is not something to wear, but to hold. It is made out of gold and rubies and diamonds. The gold is shiny and the gems are bright and beautifully cut. The document for the "Cross of Salvation" piece says that it is perfect. You set it aside and go on looking.
Regular life must be lived though, and you have to leave the chest for a while. At the end of the day, you think of the jewelry chest again, and decide to look at one last piece. You glance at the piece your hand touches, and think to yourself how pretty it is. You don't look at the document supporting the piece because you already know that it is made of silver and sapphires, and that it is a pretty piece.
After days of looking and sorting, you come to a large group of gold chains that are twisted around each other with loose jewels caught in the angry knot. You set it aside to deal with later...it's not that big of a deal right now. Anyway, you think, it is probably not that important and it doesn't interest you as much as the other pieces. It would take a lot of work to unknot the chains and pick it apart. The pile of documents that you would have to look through is large and would take up a lot of time. You go back and look at the pieces you've already seen, and think how pretty they are.
After weeks and then years, you've looked through the chest numerous times and even taken some time to compare the jeweled pieces to the documents. Your friends have told you that the jewelry is beautiful, but you are surprised to hear that they think some of the pieces ar not quite right, they are old and don't look real to them. You have taken the pieces to jewelers who tell you that they are inferior and that they are not worth very much. Some of the jewelers say that the colored stones are actually fake in some of the pieces, and some of the diamonds are really just glass. Yes, they are pretty, but not real.
After years of hearing similar things about so many of the pieces, you believe that they really are just somewhat fake and flawed. Without realizing it, you begin to think of these pieces the way the jewelers described. You disregard the documents that came with the pieces. You can see yourself that your friends were right...the jeweler was right...those pieces weren't real to begin with. The supporting documents didn't really describe the piece correctly. They must not be true.
All these years you have put aside the knot of chains. They were probably broken and not worth much anyway, and the few stones you managed to pry loose weren't very exciting. It's rather large and feels like a large rock is in the middle. You have set it aside as worthless, but then someone asks you to take another look at the mass...a very close look. She had received the same kind of chest before and HAD taken the time to look through the items, even undoing the knot of chains in her chest. She told you that the large mass contained something precious.
As you start looking at the group of knotted chains, you will either see them as not worth your time, or you will take the time to see what they're worth.
Are you willing to take a look at the knotted chains? They represent doctrines in the Bible that are unchanging and true. Will you re-look at the items that the jewelers (preachers) have told you is untrue? The Word of God has been given to each of us as a true, infallible gift that is a priceless documentation of what the Sovereign God has done and will do. He has shown us His Creation, His works from before the Creation, His Son and the Salvation offered through Him, and the way God Himself ordered that salvation for those He chose. The knot refers to the doctrines of Grace...those glorious truths that are perhaps difficult to work through, but priceless and will bring peace and joy. The chains are the doctrines, the "rock" caught in the middle is a gem of great worth...freedom. The truth WILL set you free!!!
written by Doni Hall