There are all kinds of treasures such as a treasured collection of seashells, or, a collection of Royal Albert chinaware, or, photo albums of the children when they were younger. You might even treasure your bank account or position on the corporate ladder. These are all earthly treasures. Today we are going to talk about how you can store up treasures in heaven.
Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: 20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. Matthew 7:19-21.
The Heart of the Matter
As a new Christian, this verse can be intimidating. It can even be intimidating for a Christian who has been serving the Lord for some time. It seems this verse is talking about two types of treasures: earthly treasures and heavenly treasures.
The earthly treasures are the idols of our hearts. Jesus didn’t tiptoe around suggesting that maybe you have idols but He was point-blank at saying that the things you value, your earthly treasures will be moth-eaten and destroyed by rust.
If you think about that carefully, what is He really saying about them? The things that you treasure here on earth pale in comparison to the treasures in heaven. Do not store up treasures on earth but rather go after heaven’s treasures.
Jesus points you to the heavenly treasures, the things of value, the things that are focused on Him.
That’s the crux of it, where your focus should be. He is your center, your focus, your very being. This is the heart of the matter, where you place our focus.
Can You Enjoy Earthly Possessions?
Does this mean that you cannot have photo albums or seashell collections? Or jewelry or fine china? Or even money in the bank?
No, it does not mean that. God knows that you have need of money for financial transactions. He knows you enjoy earthly things.
But the point is, is that you don’t place such a high value on these things that you leave God out of your everyday lives. Store up your treasures in heaven.
Jesus explains this in Matthew 6:24, No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
It’s plain to see that you cannot serve two masters. Read the verse again to see why that is. Now you have a choice to make, will you become a slave to money or choose to follow after God with all you’ve got?
When you have made your decision to serve God, then the enjoyment of your earthly treasures will pale. You may even find that though you enjoy them, you are not coveting them nor do you fret over them if something happened to them.
In other words, their value has lessened while you are growing your heavenly treasures.
Give to the Poor and Needy
Good news! Jesus said it is His Father’s will that you have the kingdom!
But first you must sell what you have and give to the poor.
What?!? Did He really say this or am I making this up?
Here are Jesus’ words in Luke 12:32-33, 32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth.
Okay, does this apply for us today, does He mean that we sell our homes and possessions to give everything away?
Don’t list your home just yet! It’s okay to own a home and possessions. You need these things but do not accumulate them for the purpose of having “stuff.”
John Piper, of DesiringGod.org, said
… possessions on earth are not for accumulating, they are for distributing in ways that Christ is honored and our joy in heaven is increased.John Piper, Don’t Be Anxious, Lay Up Treasure in Heaven
What Jesus wants is for you and me to be generous with the money and things we have and distribute them to those in need.
Unless, of course, He has called you to live in poverty, then you must obey. However, if you have been blessed with finances then He wants you to be generous in giving to others.
Blessings in the Giving
So, how does giving away our possessions and money lay up treasures in heaven?
- By being God-focused.
- Being a blessing to others.
- Not expecting to be repaid.
Yes, you read that right. Don’t give with strings attached.
Jesus reminds us of this in Luke 14:12-14, 13 But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, 14 and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”
Have you given anything away that you did not expect to receive repayment for? Or given away cash with no strings attached? That’s what this verse is talking about. No strings attached. You will be repaid by Jesus.
Hunting for the Treasures in Heaven
So, in addition to being a blessing to others, do you think there are any other treasures in heaven? Have you ever given it any thought?
Let me help you with the answer. Come with me as we dig deeper together to find out what other heavenly treasures there might be. Holy Spirit impressed me with these verses.
The verses in context are, 1 John 4:3-5,
3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full. 5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.
As I focused on what John was writing about, it began to dawn on me. He said our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son. That is a clue!
Fellowship with the Father and Son must be part of the joy.
Okay, quickly flip the pages over to Colossians 3:1-4,
If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. 2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. 3 For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
What are we seeking from above? What are we setting our affection on from above? Heaven’s treasures, not things that belong to the earth as Jesus stated in Matthew 6:19-21.
Store Up T
hese 7 Treasures in Heaven
I would like to propose to you that our joy is full when we seek the following things that become treasures in heaven. These treasures are in addition to distributing our earthly possessions to those in need.
Let’s see what these treasures are:
1 ~ a love for the Word of God
Psalm 119:11, Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
Proverbs 7:1, My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee.
Psalm 119:162, I rejoice at thy word, as one that findeth great spoil.
2 ~ a desire to follow Jesus
Matthew 19:21, Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt
3 ~ an intimate relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
Colossians 2:1-3,That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ; 3 In whom
1 John 1:3-4, That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.
These two related posts will help you with your walk and desire to be holy as He is holy.
4 ~ seek after the kingdom of God
Matthew 6:31-33, 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Are you a God-chaser? Do you pursue Him? If you’re not sure, then this post, How to Pursue God in 2 Important Steps will help you find the answer.
5 ~ strive to live a life that is holy and blameless, without spot or wrinkle
2 Peter 3:13-15, 14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.
6 ~ run after the high calling of God
Philippians 3:10-16, 12 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. 14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
7 ~ be rich in good works
1 Timothy 6:17-19, 17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; 18 That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; 19 Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.
Wrap Up – 7 Treasures in Heaven Revealed
Let me quickly summarize these heavenly treasures for you.
- a love for the Word of God
- a desire to follow Jesus
- develop an intimate relationship with Father, Son
- seek after the kingdom of God
- strive to live a life that is holy and blameless, without spot or wrinkle
- run after the high calling of God
- be rich in good works
So, there you go, seven treasures in heaven that make your joy full. Plus, of course, being generous with the earthly possessions entrusted to you.
What other treasures can you think of that would add to this heavenly treasure chest to make your joy full?
As always, I look forward to hearing from you. Please leave a comment and let me know what you think about this perspective. Does it ring true for you?
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Cindy Barnes has been called by God in the early 80s to be a teacher of His Word. She is a serious student of the Word, focusing on the Inductive Bible Study Method since 2007. Her passion is to teach women how to study the Bible using this method. In addition, she desires for women to develop an intense yearning to draw closer to God through reading and writing out the Bible.
Cindy teaches hundreds of women in her private online Bible Study Group who express their joy of growing deeper in their spiritual walk.
You can stay in touch with Cindy on Facebook through Women’s Tabletop Friendship.