<< Previous | Index | Next >>
                     "LAYING UP TREASURE IN HEAVEN"


INTRODUCTION

1. In Ec 5:10-16, Solomon described the problem with earthly
   treasures...
   a. Money and abundance do not truly satisfy
   b. The abundance of the rich prevent good sleep, and often hurts the
      owner
   c. Riches perish through misfortune, and cannot be taken with us when
      we die

2. In Mt 6:19-21, Jesus commands us to lay up treasure not on earth, but
   in heaven...
   a. Likely a Hebrew idiom, in which a contrast is made for the sake of
      emphasis - cf. Jn 6:27
   b. Not that it is wrong have earthly treasures per se, but our focus
      should be on laying up treasure in heaven

[Why should our focus be on laying up treasure in heaven?  Also, how do
we lay up treasure in heaven?  In Mt 6:19-24, Jesus tells us...]

I. REASONS TO LAY UP TREASURE IN HEAVEN

   A. TREASURE ON EARTH IS INSECURE...
      1. Moth and rust destroy (material things are perishable)
      2. Thieves break in and steal (material things are subject to
         theft)
      3. There is also loss due to inflation, stock devaluation,
         bankruptcies, faulty investments, etc.

   B. TREASURE IN HEAVEN IS SECURE...
      1. Neither moth nor rust destroys (our treasures are imperishable)
         - cf. 1Pe 1:3-4
      2. Thieves can not break in and steal (our treasures are securely
         guarded) - cf. 1Pe 3:4-5

   C. OUR TREASURE IS WHERE OUR HEART WILL BE...
      1. That is, where our affections, our hopes, our dreams will be
      2. If our treasure is on earth, our hearts will experience much
         disappointment
         a. As things for which you have affection decay or are one day
            destroyed by fire
         b. As things in which you find your primary joy are suddenly
            gone through things like theft
      3. If our treasure is in heaven, our hearts will not suffer great
         disappointments
         a. For our treasure is "incorruptible, undefiled, and does not
            fade away"
         b. Nothing can take our treasure away from us, for it is:
            1) "reserved in heaven for you"
            2) "kept by the power of God through faith"
      4. Whatever happens on earth will not devastate us! - e.g., He 10:
         32-34
      5. When these words are taken to heart and applied
         a. The storms of life will not overwhelm us
         b. Because we've built our foundation upon the words of Jesus!
            - cf. Mt 7:24-27

   D. TO KEEP OUR EYE GOOD...
      1. Understanding the metaphor used by Jesus:
         a. The "body" likely represents the soul or inner man
         b. The "eye" likely represents the gaze of the soul or the
            heart of man
         c. The word "good" in Greek means "simple, single,
            uncomplicated"
         d. The word "bad" in Greek means "wicked, evil"
         e. In the Scriptures, the expression "evil eye" is used to mean
            "envious, covetous" - cf. Pr 23:6; Mt 20:15; Mk 7:22
      2. Explaining the metaphor used by Jesus:
         a. If the heart or gaze of the soul be "good" ("single" in its
            love for the things of God), then one is filled with "light"
            (goodness, righteousness, and truth) - cf. Ep 5:8-10
         b. If the heart or gaze of the soul be "evil" (full of envy,
            covetousness), then one's soul is filled with "darkness"
            (selfishness, wickedness, and falsehood)!
      3. Thus the need for Jesus' warning:
         a. To guard what goes in your eye
            1) I.e., what you allow your eyes to dwell upon
            2) Remember, there is such a thing as "the lusts of the
               eyes" (i.e., materialism)
         b. To be rich toward God, free from covetousness - Lk 12:13-21
            1) Note Jesus' warning - Lk 12:15
            2) Note His conclusion - Lk 12:21
      4. Paul likewise warns of the danger of materialism, or
         covetousness
         a. Those who desire to be rich fall - 1Ti 6:9
            1) Into snares and temptations
            2) Into many foolish and harmful lusts
            3) To drown in destruction and perdition
         b. The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil - 1Ti 6:10
            1) From which some have strayed from the faith in their
               greediness
            2) From which some have pierced themselves with many sorrows

   E. TO MAKE GOD OUR MASTER...
      1. No one can serve two masters - Mt 6:24
         a. A master by definition demands "total loyalty", and we are
            unable to please two masters at the same time
         b. Such is certainly true with God - cf. Exo 34:14
         c. Mammon (Aramaic for riches) is evidently no different
      2. We have to choose between God and mammon
         a. When wealth is coveted, and becomes the priority in our
            lives, it becomes a god - cf. Ep 5:5; Col 3:5
         b. So the choice becomes one as to whether we shall worship the
            One True God, or be "idolaters" following after a false god!
      3. Choose to serve God!
         a. As Jesus would later say, "Seek first the kingdom of God"
            - Mt 6:33
         b. Do this, and God becomes our Master
         c. Since we can't serve two masters, this effectively
            eliminates Mammon from being our "god"!

[For such reasons, Jesus tells us why to lay up in treasure in heaven.
Jesus also tells us how to lay up treasure in heaven...]

II. HOW TO LAY UP TREASURE IN HEAVEN

   A. BY GIVING TO THE POOR...
      1. Jesus connected giving to the poor with laying up treasure on
         two occasions
         a. To His disciples - Lk 12:32-33
         b. To a rich ruler - Lk 18:18-27
      2. Paul also connected sharing one's wealth with laying up
         treasure in heaven - 1Ti 6:17-19
         a. To be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share
         b. Storing up a good foundation for the time to come
         c. To lay hold on eternal life

   B. NOT THAT ETERNAL LIFE CAN BE PURCHASED...
      1. Salvation is by grace through faith, not of works - Ep 2:8-9;
         Tit 3:5
         a. We are redeemed by the precious blood of Christ - 1Pe 1:
            18-19
         b. And as children of God we are joint-heirs with Christ,
            recipients of every spiritual blessing in Christ - Ro 8:
            16-17; Ep 1:3
      2. But giving to the poor helps us to lay hold on eternal life
         a. By freeing our hearts from covetousness (idolatry) - cf. Ep
            5:5
         b. By reminding us when our true reward will be received - cf.
            Lk 14:12-14

CONCLUSION

1. We are not called to asceticism...
   a. God wants us to enjoy what we have - 1Ti 6:17c; cf. Ec 5:18-20
   b. Yet proper enjoyment requires a heart for giving - cf. Ac 20:35

2. Thus we are to work with our hands...
   a. Not just to provide for our families - 1 Tim 5:8
   b. But also for others in need - Ep 4:28

3. Are we laying up treasure in heaven...?
   a. Jesus told us why
   b. Jesus (and Paul) also told us how

Have you given much thought as to how you can be rich in good works,
ready to give, willing to share?  Store up a good foundation for the
time to come, and lay hold on eternal life...!
<< Previous | Index | Next >>


Home Page
Have A Bible Question? | Want A Free Bible Study Course? | Looking For A Church Near You?
Want To Talk With Someone By Phone? | Want To Discuss The Bible By Email?
Search The Outlines

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2011

eXTReMe Tracker