Matthew 6:19-24 19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, 23 but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
24 “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.
The Treasure Measure
Matt 6. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Treasure. It resurrects memories of boyhood adventures and maps with an “X marks the spot”.
- It creates images of swashbuckling pirates, Aladdin and the Arabian Knights or sunken ships buried for centuries at sea.
What if you really were to find treasure, real treasure?
- Let’s say you just bought that quiet piece of land out east of the city where you’re going to build a modest country home so you can get away from the busy chaos of the urban rat race.
You’ve got several acres so you decide to build a barn and put in a garden. One sunny, breezy, carefree day you’re plowing up the ground where you will do your first planting. You jab a shovel into the ground to make your first corn row and… “clank!”… you strike something solid in the ground.
Curiously, you dig up a box about the size of small television; made of heavy wood and held together with antique steel corners and edges. The box is secured with an old fashioned cast iron lock, so you take a hammer and beat the rust-weakened metal hinges until they finally break loose.
Well by now your curiosity has grown to great excitement because obviously someone has gone to great trouble to hide something apparently valuable; and its been waiting to be discovered for quite a long time. What could it be? Loot? A robber’s stash? Exhilarating thoughts of fortune and wealth course through you as open the box to discover… gold coins, jewels and heirlooms! You’re life will never be the same.
Jackpot. Bingo. You just won the lottery.
There’s no doubt that a discovery like that would thrill us, and yes, change our lives. For some it would become the consuming focus of their life.
Would you believe me if I told you that there is treasure beyond comparison waiting to be discovered on your “land” right now?
- This is one of those cute Christian analogies, right? Yes. If that is all you make of it.
- But if you are ready, God can open your spiritual eyes to His treasure that makes a treasure chest of gold seem as worthless as yesterday’s trash in comparison.
Let’s take a look at some Godly treasure:
Psalms 119. 162 I rejoice at Your word, As one who finds great treasure.
- God’s Word is boundless treasure. When you pick up your Bible, is it more valuable to you than holding handfuls of hundred dollar bills?
- The Bible is not just a good book. It’s not even “just” a treasure. It is a GREAT treasure.
- Just as discovering a cave full of gold would change your life and arrest your attention, God’s Word should consume your life as a great treasure.
2 Cor 4.7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.
- Who has what treasure, in what earthen vessels? The treasure here is salvation.
- And it is delivered to humankind by frail, expendable, common people so that God will receive all the glory for it. Is salvation a treasure to you?
- Is it valuable enough that you share it with everyone you meet?
- There is plenty of this treasure to go around for anyone willing to share it, and anyone will to receive it.
Luke 18.22 So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”
- Was Jesus saying the rich young ruler’s money would go to heaven and wait for him? Yes, in a sense.
- His earthly treasure was keeping him from Christ. By giving it up, the money would be converted to eternal dividends of obedience which would yield the young man hundred fold eternal returns.
- Giving it up is not just the act of giving it away. It is giving it away to serve God’s purpose.
ALL we have is God’s. Our responsibility is to be good managers of it for Him and use it as He directs.
Whatever we give up for the Lord now, will be converted to heavenly funds and deposited in the highest yielding ERA (Eternal Reward Account) in the universe!
“He is no fool who gives up what he
cannot keep in order to gain what he cannot lose!”
Luke 12.33-34 Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
- Jesus challenges us to choose what REAL treasure is.
Can treasure be money, power, fame, fortune, retirement and luxury?
- It can. But it won’t last. You WILL lose it.
- You can’t take it with you when you die.
- REAL treasure is eternal, high yielding and cannot be lost in a market crash, fire, theft, decay or death. REAL treasure is Godliness in all forms.
Deut 14.2 For you are a holy people to the LORD your God, and the LORD has chosen you to be a people for Himself, a special treasure above all the peoples who are on the face of the earth.
- This Old Testament verse specifically speaks of the nation of Israel but the principle applies to Believers today.
- The true treasure on earth today is not in the Fort Knox gold vaults; it is not in the South African diamond mines; it’s not in Silicon Valley or Wall Street.
- Earth’s true treasure is embodied in those who obey God and serve Him.
- They are a SPECIAL treasure, of more value than all the riches of the earth.
- The totality of wealth, power, influence and opulence of any country is not to be compared to the treasure of one simple, faithful, believing child of God.
Matt 13. 44 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.
- The Kingdom of Heaven is a treasure; and for those who “discover it”, it is worth giving up all you have to “purchase” it.
- What person would not sell every possession he has to raise $100 in order to buy something they can resell for $1,000,000?
- How much more valuable is Eternal Life?
- How much of your life will you sell to get it?
- It will cost you all you have but the return on your investment is eternally incalculable.
Isa 33.6 Wisdom and knowledge will be the stability of your times, And the strength of salvation; The fear of the LORD is His treasure.
- The fear of the Lord is great treasure.
- Respect and reverence for God has great purchasing power in all things spiritual and eternal.
- The fear of the Lord is the first step in gaining true wisdom, discernment and understanding (Ps 111.10).
- The fear of the Lord is that deeply humble, reverent respect we have when come to learn the truth of who God really is, compared to the truth of who we really are.
- The Bible tells us of some “bad” treasure as well:
James 5.2-3 Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver are corroded, and their corrosion will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have heaped up treasure in the last days.
- Earthly treasure will be lost; it will decay. Invest it in God’s work while the “heavenly market” is still trading.
Prov 15.16 Better is a little with the fear of the LORD, Than great treasure with trouble.
- Have you traded eternal, indestructible treasure for the temporary and dangerous treasure this world has to offer?
- Why? You can’t take any of it with you (1 Tim 6.6-7). You will lose it all eventually either to loss or death.
Earthly treasure without eternal assurance is bad treasure.
- What treasure gets your attention? A pile of money, or a Bible? A retirement account, or an eternal account? The fear of being poor, or the fear of God?
Luke 12:33–34 (NKJV)
33 Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.