James 1:9 Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted:
James is encouraging these Jewish believers to look beyond their earthly standing and focus on their eternal standing. Persecution had driven many of them from their wealth and security. They had lost their jobs, their possessions, and their homes. They had become “brothers of low degree”. They were people of humble circumstances. The word “low” means “low estate”. Poverty was the common denominator among most of them, but they had riches that money could not buy. They had treasures unseen!
Though their earthly treasures were diminished, God had blessed them with eternal wealth. They were sons of God, joint heirs with the Lord Jesus! They were given the promise of heaven and sealed with the Holy Spirit! The Lord had exalted them, and had given them riches far above what this world could ever offer. James reminds them to rejoice!
This verse reminds me of an old song entitled, “I Found a Treasure When I Found Jesus”. The riches of this world are like trash heaps when compared to the riches of eternity. Though the world cannot see it, and we cannot fully explain it, we rejoice in our position and glory in the promises of God! I’ll gladly be called a brother of low degree in this world, to enjoy the splendor of the next world.
Child of God do not concern yourself with riches or titles down here. They will mean nothing in eternity. You may not have great wealth, but if you know you are saved, then you have treasures unseen. You may not wear a fancy title or have a great position down here, but you are a child of the King for all eternity. When we take the focus off of where we stand here and place it on where we stand in Christ, then it will cause each of us to rejoice. He has lifted us up out of the dung hills of this world and exalted us to the glories of Heaven. We are blessed with treasures unseen!