How Do You Approach Jesus? By Nathele Graham Jesus was well known in Israel. Some…
Treasure the Things of God
Treasure the Things of God
By Nathele Graham
What do you treasure? Gold? Silver? Jewels? We all have things we wouldn’t want to lose, but many of our treasures are “dust catchers” sit on a shelf, to be admired. That dust catcher might be a treasured family Bible that never gets opened, so the treasure to be found inside is never discovered. These doodads and knick-knacks mean a lot to us, even though they probably don’t have a high monetary value. It’s the sentimental value that matters with them. Maybe you have a token from a carnival where you fell in love on the Merry-Go-Round, or a scenic picture on your refrigerator of a field with a green sky and purple grass that was painstakingly drawn by a 5-year-old artist. We see these things as treasures. The dictionary will usually define treasure in terms of valuable metals and jewels. But true treasure is found in Heaven. Jesus said the kingdom of heaven is very valuable.
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.” Matthew 13:44.
Do you value your eternal life? Do you treat your salvation like a figurine on a shelf that you take out occasionally and dust off? You cannot earn your salvation by working for it. Jesus paid the ultimate price for you to spend eternity with Him, but you can show your appreciation for what He did for you.
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1.
Maybe you can show your appreciation by putting fear aside and sharing the Gospel with others, or maybe you can take a stand and roll out of bed in time to attend worship service with other believers. Sitting in a pew won’t bring salvation, but it will be a witness to others of your faith. Treasure your life in Christ and the things of God.
Scripture gives us a foundation for our faith, and we need to build our life upon the solid Rock that is Christ.
“According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved: yet so as by fire.” 1 Corinthians 3:10-15.
Paul wasn’t promoting a works-based faith, but rather a love-based faith. Faith that does all things for the Lord with a happy heart. The treasure of gold, silver, and precious stones are things we have done for God with no thought of a reward on earth. The wood, hay, and stubble are things we have done for our own glory or comfort. A Christians works will be judged at the Bema Seat, and our works that were done with selfish motives will burn. Only the valuable treasure of works done for Christ will last, and they will bring eternal rewards.
James also understood that earthly treasures are temporary and not really all that valuable.
“Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days.” James 5:1-3.
His words are true. Many people spend their lives buying things they don’t really need, such as over-priced cars, big homes, fancy clothes, and more. These things can make life more comfortable, but if this is what you live for, then you treasure the wrong things. You need to turn your focus to eternal things, things that cannot be corrupted in this fallen world. We do need things, but a vehicle that gets you from point A to point B, is a lot more valuable than a Porsche that you’re afraid to drive because it might get rusty or dented. If you have the money to buy a Porsche, wouldn’t it be better to buy a car that is less expensive, then use the money you save to do God’s work. Maybe you could pick up an elderly neighbor and drive her to worship service, or to a doctor’s appointment. That’s how you store up riches in heaven.
When Jesus walked among men, He showed us the example of how we are to behave, but He also taught us what we are to value. He didn’t gather to Himself wealth. His life and teaching about treasures should be studied by every “name it and claim it” teacher. It isn’t earthly treasure we should seek, but heavenly treasure.
“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Matthew 6:19-21.
True treasure has nothing to do with monetary value, but it has everything to do with how you serve the Lord. After Jesus said to lay up treasures in heaven, He taught about how the lilies don’t worry about how they are adorned, but not even Solomon, who did store riches on earth, was arrayed with such glory.
“Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? Or What shall we drink? Or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for you heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:31-33.
This doesn’t mean we aren’t to hold a job, and earn a living. If you have a job and your bills are paid, that’s a blessing from the Lord. God provides for your needs and will open doors for you to earn a living. Just be sure your treasure isn’t in what expensive thing you can buy. Jesus walked wherever He went. He didn’t even have a pony cart to travel in. He treasured people and was more concerned for their souls than for His own comfort.
“For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” Mark 8:36.
Treasure the things of God, not the things of this world.
How do we seek the kingdom of God? We submit ourselves to Him. We study Scripture, then apply it to our life. If we begin to covet what other people have, or if we place anything ahead of our love for God, then we need to stop and ask ourself what we truly treasure. Do we treasure the kingdom of God and our salvation that He died to purchase for us, or do we treasure things that will be left to others when we die? Make no mistake, we all will die someday, and the only things that will matter to us then are the things we did for Christ. We are to be good stewards of the money God allows us to have, we are to love our neighbor, but we are also to honor God with our lives. In the last talk that Jesus had with His disciples before His crucifixion, He said:
“If you love me, keep my commandments.” John 14:15.
Earlier in that same talk, Jesus told them:
“A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another: as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.” John 13:34.
Do you hold to that commandment? If you love your fellow Christians you will want to spend time with them. You will encourage them in their walk with Christ, and they will encourage you. This is treasure that cannot rust or decay. If your fellowship is with worldly people who do not honor God and who move you away from a right walk with Christ, then there is no value in that fellowship. Treasure the things of God and keep your heart turned to Christ.
What should you treasure? Treasure your salvation through the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Treasure the love of God and share it with others. Treasure the gift of life God gave you. Treasure the fruit from the Holy Spirit and cultivate it.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23.
Treasure your brothers and sisters in Christ and don’t forsake fellowship with them.
“And consider one another to provoke unto love and good works: not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much more, as ye see the day approaching.” Hebrews 10:24-25.
Parents influence their children, so take your children to Sunday school. Lead by example and show them your treasure is of God, not of the world. Fathers are a great influence over the children, but if the father in the household doesn’t move his family closer to the treasures of Heaven, then the mother needs to step up and teach the children about Heavenly treasure.
Treasure the things of God.
God bless you all,
All original scripture is “theopneustos” God breathed.
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