TREASURE IN HEAVEN

Posted: May 18, 2012 in Books, Christianity, Education, Family, History, Life, Lifestyle, News, Parenting, Quotes, Uncategorized

“For no one can lay a foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. If what he built survives, he will receive his reward. If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.”

1 Corinthians 3:12-15 NIV

I believe the conversation the rich young ruler had with Jesus provides us the opportunity to give serious and sincere consideration to the way we are looking at success and achievement in the world compared to success from the perspective of heaven. The conversation between Jesus and the rich young ruler challenges me to think about whether my goals and ambitions are solely focused on what I can achieve in this world and whether I give serious consideration to what my eternal life will be like when I leave this world. At the beginning of His earthly ministry, Jesus preached about storing up treasure in heaven and that message was reiterated during the Apostle Paul’s ministry in his epistle in the New Testament book of Colossians regarding setting your heart and minds on heavenly things.

In Matthew’s gospel, while Jesus addressed the topic of investing in eternal life by storing up treasure in heaven, He admonishes the crowd about the subject of serving two masters, God and money, and not being able to do both. Will my life be about serving God, living to please Him, or will my life be devoted to seeking to get rich and pleasing myself? During the time of Jesus’ earthly ministry, He preached about, told parables and came into contact with people who had great wealth. Careful inspection of those encounters should challenge us to consider whether we are consistently seeking to invest ourselves in the things of heaven and eternal life, or is our focus prioritized about the treasure we can accumulate while we are on earth.

Consider the parable of the hidden treasure and consider what the Spirit of God is communicating to you about how you can live a balanced life that strives to invest in the heavenly, eternal things of God while you seek to succeed and achieve. In Matthew’s gospel (Matthew 13:44), Jesus tells the parable of a man who found a treasure hidden in a field. The bible says that when he found it he hid it again, and with joy, he went and sold all he had and bought the field. The man could have easily kept the treasure, but he hid it and then went and sold all he had and bought the field. My first thought, then, is that the man valued the treasure more than anything he currently possessed. So much so, he sold all he had and purchased the field the treasure was discovered in. The man felt the life he would have with the treasure and the field was more valuable to him, now, than the life he had prior to discovering the treasure. So much so, he invested his wealth (current life) in the field (future life). Jesus taught in the parable of the hidden treasure that the kingdom of God is like that hidden treasure. God is challenging those who claim faith in Christ to make a personal investment in the heavenly things, involving the kingdom of God, as we strive to invest in developing for ourselves a good life on earth.

The reality of living in this world and striving to achieve, succeed and attain wealth can cause us to become shortsighted and lose focus on the heavenly perspective. This is why the Bible challenges us to set our hearts and minds on eternal things. We have to become deliberate and intentional about investing ourselves in the kingdom of God as the man did with the hidden treasure. So significant was this principle of kingdom living, Jesus taught parables regarding the benefit and consequence of living or ignoring the principle of investing in the kingdom of God.The King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me….whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’ – Matthew 25:34-36

“But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.” – Luke 6:49 NIV

May God bless you and help you to live a balanced life with an intentional focus on investing yourself in the kingdom of God so you may have treasure in heaven and experience the fullness of life Christ came for you to have.

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