RPS #5 – Time: The Most Valuable Resource on Earth

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In this episode we look at the phrase “redeem the time” from Ephesians 5:16 and how having an appreciation for the preciousness of our time changes how we live. From the writings of Jonathan Edwards, we examine four reasons why time is the most valuable resource on earth and what that means for how we spend it.

Show Notes


  • Welcome to the 5th episode…
  • If you have questions, suggestions for topics or just want to say hello. Send me an email at mailbag@redeemingproductivity.com.
  • Be sure to check out the companion blog post

1:21 – Episode Introduction

  • What makes things like gold, diamonds, oil, or other natural resources valuable?
  • The most valuable resources are useful, rare, and nonrenewable.
  • Given these principles for value, the most valuable resource on earth is time.
  • With the help of Jonathan Edwards, we will take a look at Ephesians 5:16 and that phrase, “redeem the time.”

4:20 – Context for Ephesians 5:16

  • In Ephesians 5:15, the apostle Paul begins a section on “walking in wisdom” so we need to understand the instruction to “redeem the time” in that context.
  • This is one of the ways in which believers are to walk in wisdom. We walk in wisdom by, as it says in the ESV, “making the best use of the time.”

5:26 – Explaining the Phrase

  • That phrase “making the best use of” in the ESV is actually just one word.
  • Some translations render is simply “redeeming.” And that is a good translation because it carries the idea of buying, especially buying back or buying out.
  • Paul uses the same term in Galatians 3:13 when he writes, “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us….” And he uses it similarly to our passage in reference to time in Colossians 4:5, “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time.”
  • Making the most of the time is the opposite of delaying, it is taking full advantage of every opportunity.

10:48 – Edwards on The Preciousness of Time

  • American Puritan Jonathan Edwards addresses this important issue in his 1734 sermon “on the preciousness of time and the importance of redeeming it”.
  • In it, he gives four reasons why time is precious.

13:05 – First, time is precious because eternity depends on it.

14:20 – Second, time is precious because it is very short.

17:02 – Third, time is precious because we do not know how much we have.

22:40 – Fourth, time is precious because once it’s gone it’s gone.

24:40 – Application


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