Jul 302016
 

bible-word-of-god_thumbMatthew 6:19-34

Lay Up Treasures in Heaven – OK, now it gets a little tricky … he’s talking about my stuff and I don’t know if I like it.

19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal,

  • Have you ever gone to the dump or a junk yard?
  • Do you realize that everything there people lusted after – people just had to have the latest model and now it is junk.
  • We could all probably look in our garage or storage area at the ‘now’ junk we have accumulated.

20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.

  • So what is the difference between treasures on earth or in heaven?
  • This is a goofy example, but… If you were stuck on a desert island that was doomed to destruction – a volcano about to erupt in the next month, would you; Work on your hut or work on your boat?
  • Think of Gilligan’s Island – they worked on their hut – they invented everything that made the island comfortable and workable – but they never worked on the boat.
  • The professor could invent anything EXCEPT something to fix the boat.

21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

  • Where is your heart – today?
  • What does God want from you? Look at the 1st 3 commandments
  • ) Your heart – 2.) Your mouth – 3.) Your ears
  • Compare this to Romans where Paul explains what the unbelievers do.
  • They take a piece of God’s creation and make IT an object of worship.

22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light,

  • A question arises here – which way does the lamp shine?
  • Is the eye “the body’s lamp” in the sense that it shines light into the body or…
  • Is does it shine outward – and where the lamp shines, directs the body where to go?
  • I will go with the 2nd – that the body’s lamp is the eye.
  • Perhaps at the times this was a well known proverb.

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!

  • Perhaps it can be summed up as;
  • If your eye is healthy & generous, that is because your whole body is full of light and is spiritually sound.
  • However, if your eye is diseased and greedy, that is because your whole body is full of darkness and is spiritually unsound.

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.

  • “You cannot serve God and money.” – Darn!
  • Look, here is the deal – where is your heart? Are you into people & things?
  • Do I need to give up all to the poor to show how much I love God?
  • NO!! God gave you all that you have…
  • But what you do with it shows where your heart is.

Do Not Be Anxious

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

  • “Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? “ Is it???
  • Don’t Worry – Be Happy – easier said than done
  • Who here is saying “yes God – easy for you to say.”Here the disciple is led to repentance and faith in the Sermon on the Mount.
  • Fear, love and trust God – Learn to trust in him alone.
  • He taught us to pray for our daily bread – so don’t be a hoarder and be curved in on yourself.

26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?

  • God is not saying that you won’t have problems – sickness – homelessness
  • But he is promising care
  • Even if I forget to fill the bird feeder, they still eat.
  • Have you ever seen a bird with pockets?
  • Have you ever seen a bird plant & harvest?

27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?

  • Above this phrase is “Lay up your treasures in heaven – seek the right master”
  • After this comes “seek”

28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin,

  • The lilies of the field don’t go to Sears and buy a sewing machine

29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

  • Think of everything that man can gather for himself – none of it carries the beauty or sufficiency that God provides.

30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

  • What does worry and anxiety say about our faith?

31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’

  • Aren’t these the 3 big worry generators in our life? Or were when we were younger?

32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.

  • Unbelievers and believers alike still look for the same types of material and temporal things.
  • And God knows what we need and want.

33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

  • Seek what first? What will be the result?
  • How is this done – in a practical manner?

34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

  • 25-34 go completely against our grain. (at least mine)
  • We put our trust in things, savings accounts, 401Ks etc
  • Sometimes we get ourselves so anxious that it can become “oh look at me and all the things I need to be anxious about.”

  13 Responses to “The Weekend Word”

  1. To share a little thought from my own experience – there is nothing (okay, maybe not nothing,but not much) like having to downsize the household from a large 4 bedroom house to a small 2.5 bedroom house, to bring up the realization that not only do you have far too much stuff, but three quarters of it is not needed…..at all….

    It’s amazing to realize what one can easily live without.

  2. This is a great lesson to assist Christians in managing anxiety during election season. Thank you for the good word.

  3. So in a practical way how do you lay up treasures in heaven and how can you be sure?

  4. MLD,

    I’d be interested in the Lutheran perspective on this.
    I’ve always taught that anything given in Jesus name is instantly credited to the heavenly account.
    This doesn’t just speak of money…

  5. LOL I don’t think there is a Lutheran view. Just a Christian view and a manipulative view. I don’t know if it involves money (other than personal hording) but more of live out your vocation helping your neighbor. Totally thieft proof and rustproof.

  6. Michael, if you lead one person to Christ you’ve laid up treasure in heaven. I think the greatest treasures in heaven are saved souls, yours, mine and the saints of all times.

  7. One question I’ve been asking a few Christians lately: How much treasure on earth can you store up before you’re “storing up treasure on earth”?

  8. Jean,

    So, that begs the question, then….. anyone who hasn’t led someone to
    Christ, hasn’t stored up any treasure in heaven?

  9. Hi Owen,

    I was thinking along two lines of thought:

    “We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; 9 as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold, we live; as punished, and yet not killed; 10 as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, yet possessing everything.” (2 Cor 8b-10)

    1) Paul speaks of many being made rich through his ministry. I assume he is talking about spiritual and eternal wealth, rather than corporal and temporal. So, when we think about storing up treasure in heaven, I was not thinking in a selfish manner as though the wealth is all mine, but that each of us, His treasures, are being stored up. And always remembering that some plant and others water, but it is the Lord that gives the life and growth.

    2) In the same way that a true Christian does good works (just like a good tree produces good fruit), these good works, which are the fruit of the Spirit, are answers to the first three petitions of the Lord’s Prayer: (1) Hallowed by thy name; (2) Thy kingdom come; and (3) Thy will be done on earth….

    So, perhaps I was too narrow in singling out leading people to Christ, if we take that to mean the preaching of the Word or formal evangelism, although those are clear examples, but all Christian good works in a broader sense hallow His name, bring His kingdom, and manifest His will on earth. Therefore, I think they are heavenly treasures.

  10. I don’t think these are ‘to do’ things or that we are to figure out how to do each let alone do them properly .
    Jesus is following up the Beatitude and these are just more of what a Christian ‘be’. – not what a Christian does. I think this is why Jesus give not details.

    This must be tied to what was said prior – just look how we left Fasting – we have no idea how or why.

    Many times I think we take these more as Confucius say than Jesus says.

  11. “Many times I think we take these more as Confucius say than Jesus says.”

    that could be the question of the month… wise saying of Jesus? God forgive us

  12. Thanks, Jean – hope you didn’t think I was trying to snark with my #8. I was just musing.

    I think it’s very telling that Jesus followed up the “store up treasures in heaven” with verse 21 – “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” I often think of that sentence the other way around – wherever we decide our treasure is (the things that matter most to us), our heart will follow. (Where your heart is , there your treasure will be.)

    Like the good tree producing good fruit. The works become a by-product of where the heart is already set.

  13. Owen,
    Not at all. I didn’t even know you had a snarky side. 🙂

    I’ve tried snark on this blog before, and it usually doesn’t go well for me. MLD seems to be the only one who gets away with it.

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