You and I are like God’s deposit on this world. Our salvation is a sure sign that God will eventually redeem all of this creation. Just as God brought new life to our souls, he will bring new life to this planet. Just as he accomplished redemption in us, he will accomplish redemption in all of this universe. He will complete in all the cosmos what he has begun in us. If he does not, the suffering and death of Jesus Christ will have been a waste. He will have accomplished only a partial, not a complete, salvation.
Around fourteen years ago, Aileen and I bought our first home. We had been searching all over our town and all over the other towns nearby, looking for just the right place. We couldn’t find it. They were all too big or too expensive or too far from where we wanted to be. Where we wanted to be, we realized, was right where we were. So when a neighbouring home went on the market, we were quick to check it out.
As happens, we made an offer on that house. After a little back and forth, the offer was accepted, at which point we had to put down a deposit. Even though we had not yet taken possession of the home, we made a payment. That payment, that deposit, was meant to show that we would go all the way. It was the sign that we would not just stop at an offer, but would actually close on the deal. If we were to later decide to not go forward with the transaction, we would lose our deposit and would have wasted that rather substantial sum of money. And, sure enough, we did go forward, we did complete the sale, and we have been living there happily ever since.
In James 1:18, we are told that Christians are essentially God’s deposit on this world. James says of God that “of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.” According to the pleasure of his will, God “brought us forth”—he saved us—by “the word of truth,” the gospel. This is the experience of every Christian—being drawn powerfully and effectually to God.
And why does he do this? Why does God draw us to himself? There are many valid ways we could answer that question. He does it out of love. That’s true. He does it for his own glory. That’s true, too. But here James points to yet another reason. God saves us so we can serve as a kind of deposit.