By David J. Stewart | February 2014
Matthew 13:44, “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.”
Our text verse from Matthew 13:44 is an incredible Scripture. Jesus plainly teaches that He is likening this story to Heaven. Jesus tells the story about a man who finds a treasure in a field. The man realizes that he has found something so great that he joyously goes and sells all his earthly possessions in order to purchase this land so he can obtain the hidden treasure. This story is comparable to Heaven Jesus said, the motherload of all treasures.
This wise man went and sold all his earthly possessions in order to leverage his debt (spending power), so that he could buy this field and all that is hidden in it. My friend, Heaven is a real place. Jesus in this small passage of Scripture is teaching that we ought to do the same as this worldly wise man, by using all of our earthly money, resources and things for Jesus' sake and the gospels. Life is so short that it will literally all be over just in a matter of heartbeats. Your life and mine are counting down quickly.
This does not mean that you ought to give all your money to your church; but rather, it means to use all that God has given to you for His glory, pleasure and purpose. There are thousands of ways to honor God with our substance. It pleases God when we by faith obey Him, taking heed according to His Word, that is, the holy Bible. Psalms 119:9, “Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.” The day you got saved, everything you own became the Lord's, because He watches over your soul day and night as His child.
Whatever golden opportunities that we may presently have to glorify God by reaching the lost for Christ with the gospel, praying and fasting, supporting missionary work, giving financially to the work of God, contending for the Christian faith, taking a stand for God, helping the poor and needy, visiting the captives in prison, lifting up the fallen, restoring the weak and living for OTHERS are quickly fading away. Time is of the essence!
So oftentimes people go into massive financial debt to buy a home, a business, a boat, a car (or all of the above). They use what is called “debt-leveraging,” which means in simple terms, “borrowing to invest more.” You are leveraging your assets to enable you to make a greater investment in something else. In the case of our text Scripture, this man sold everything he owned, leveraging all his worldly wealth in order that he could buy this property with the hidden treasure that he had found.
Here again, Jesus teaches what the Kingdom of Heaven is like...
Matthew 13:45-46, “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.”
This merchant (buyer and seller) of pearls went and sold all his pearls so that he could purchase the mother-of-all-pearls which he had just found. The Lord is likening (comparing) this merchant's decision to go-for-broke to investing in Heaven. Most people (saved and unsaved alike) spend their entire lives leveraging their earthly assets to buy temporal things here on earth. Remember, you can't take any of it with you! You were born into the world with nothing, and you'll die and leave this world with nothing. Proverbs 27:20, “Hell and destruction are never full; so the eyes of man are never satisfied.”
With these important truths in mind, it ought to become very clear to the reader that this earthly life isn't worth investing in. Life is like a car, that is, it's a depreciating asset from the moment that you drive it off the parking lot where you bought it. Albeit, Heaven is an eternal investment, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and neither do thieves break through and steal. This is what the Lord taught and promised in Matthew 6:19-20. We have but one life to live. Will you live it for Jesus?
Don't lay up treasures and go into financial debt here on earth so that you can enjoy a better temporary lifestyle here on earth; but rather, lay up for your self eternal treasures in Heaven that will never erode away, nor can they be taken away from you for any reason. We leverage our debt for an eternal lifestyle through prayers, fastings, sharing the gospel (soul-winning) and all that we do in Jesus' precious name for His' sake and the gospel's.
Jim Elliot (1927-1956), the martyred American missionary to Ecuador in 1956 said, “He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep, to gain that which he cannot lose.” Elliot was one of five missionaries who went in an attempt to evangelize the Huaorani people of Ecuador, but were instead brutally murdered by ten Huaorani soldiers and their dead bodies dumped into the local river. They died for their Christian faith. In America, we think persecution is someone laughing at a religious bumper sticker on our car. Around the world today in 2014, Christians are still being persecuted, prosecuted and martyred for their faith.
The way that we view this temporal earthly life now, will determine our eternal lifestyle for ever. Matthew 6:19-21, “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.” Jesus told us to lay up treasures in Heaven. Our lifestyle in eternity as believers will be determined by our life now here on earth. Otherwise, what would be the use of laying up heavenly treasures? Daniel 12:3, “And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.” If some believers will shine in eternity, then others won't. If some have laid up treasures, then the plain implication is that others haven't. Will you be one of the haves or have nots in eternity?
Heaven is the mother load of all treasures and we as believers ought to be leveraging our debt by using everything that we own, our talents, our resources and influence to further the Kingdom of God. 'Tis only one life will soon be past, only what's done for Christ will last. If we're all going to have the same exact rewards in Heaven, then what's the use of Scriptures like 1st Corinthians 3:8, “Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.” Clearly, God rewards the water boy on the spiritual playing field as much as the key players. God rewards the praying man as much as the preaching man, for time spent. God rewards labour and not talent.
Everyone can serve God. Even the person locked behind bars or crippled in a wheelchair can fervently labour in prayer as taught in Colossians 4:12, “Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always labouring fervently for you in prayers, that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.” Prayer is work!
You Can't Take It With You!
If we truly comprehended by faith the realities of the Kingdom Of God, then we would joyously use the money and things that we have in this temporary world for God's glory. Clearly, wise stewardship of all that God has given to us is expected. Literally, we are stewards who have been entrusted with God's money. If you are saved, then everything that you own is the Lord's. So if someone steals your things, they have stolen from the Lord, because you and everything that you own are His. Literally, God asks us to give back some of what HE GAVE TO US, and then He rewards us for it. What a great deal! What a fantastic deal!
You Can't Take It With You! (a life-changing MP3 sermon by Pastor Jeff Owens)
We cannot take anything with us when we die, but we CAN send it ahead. That is, it's not what we leave behind that matters; but rather, what will be waiting for us when we get to Heaven. Although Dr. John MacArthur is a liberal who denies that Jesus' blood is sprinkled on the heavenly Mercy Seat, and he teaches a Calvinistic works-based false plan of salvation, still he makes the following awesome quote concerning the mammon of unrighteousness (Luke 16:8-9), with which I agree 100% . . .
“Believers are to use their master's money (we are stewards) in a way that will accrue fruits for eternity, by investing in the kingdom gospel that brings sinners to salvation, so that when they arrive in Heaven (an everlasting home) those sinners will be there to welcome them.” —Pastor John MacArthur
The people whom we lead to the Lord here on earth today, will be there to welcome and receive us into everlasting habitations tomorrow when we die, to enjoy our peaceful and happy home in Heaven forever with Jesus. What a time that will be!!! The story of the wise, but shady, servant who made friends of the mammon of unrighteousness for his own personal gain, is an example which the Lord uses to encourage us to do the same, but by DEBT-LEVERAGING EVERYTHING WE OWN FOR AN ETERNAL LIFESTYLE. Amen!
WHAT ARE YOU DOING FOR GOD TODAY? WE'LL WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? GET BUSY FOR GOD!!! You can't take money to Heaven with you, but you can take souls, people. You know, you've never seen a U-haul trailer hooked-up to the back of a hearse. You can't take it with you!
God Uses Money And Things To Test Our Affections
God uses money and things to test our affections. Colossians 3:1-3, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.”
The ungodly world only thinks in terms of dollars and cents. Everything is about money to them. Ephesians 4:17, “This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind... Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.” The heathen world will do anything for money. They are past (beyond) any feelings of guilt for being unethical, greedy and hurtful toward others by the way they make money.
My friend, Heaven is a grand treasure, much more valuable than a giant precious pearl, and far more valuable and enduring than any earthly treasure that can only be enjoyed for a short time. Won't you invest with me in eternal things? There are so many things that you can do to invest in Heaven. Mark 9:41, “For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward.” Even the Christian who buys coffee and refreshments for church gatherings, they will be rewarded by God in Heaven. You're doing something for the Lord. That's what Jesus just said. Mark 9:41 says that giving even a cup of water in a disciple's name will not go unrewarded. So even the things that we do to help OTHERS who are serving Christ will be fully rewarded in eternity.
If you see someone who needs medical attention, but they cannot afford insurance, perhaps you can pay to get them care. Dr. Jack Hyles once met with a couple and the wife kept holding her hand by her mouth to hide her rotten teeth. Brother Hyles paid to have her teeth repaired. That's Christianity! Philippians 2:4, “Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” If you want to think like Jesus, then always consider the needs of OTHERS and live to fill them, especially their eternal need for hearing the gospel. We draw people into the Church with Christ's LOVE, and then we attach them to the TRUTH. Isn't that beautiful!
Again, Mark 9:41 says that giving even a cup of water in a disciple's name will not go unrewarded. So even the things that we do to help OTHERS who are serving Christ will be fully rewarded in eternity. The eyes of the Lord behold the evil and the good, and no deed is ever overlooked, whether it be good or evil. My friend, let's get busy for Jesus Christ by looking for every possible opportunity to express God's love for our neighbours, co-workers, loved ones, friends and strangers alike, that we may exemplify our precious Lord “Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father” (Galatians 1:4).
A Tremendous Biblical Principal To Learn
Remember also that God only rewards us when we give to the poor who cannot return the favor...
Luke 14:12, “Then said he also to him that bade him, When thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor thy rich neighbours; lest they also bid thee again, and a recompence be made thee. But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind: And thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee: for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just.” Please don't miss this important truth about giving.
Matthew 5:46, “For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?” If you buy things for people who can buy things to reciprocate your generosity, then the reward is negated. Ah, but when you give to those who cannot return your benevolence, then great is your reward in Heaven. This is exactly what the Bible teaches. If someone gives back the favor, you've lost that reward. This is why we are taught by Jesus Christ Himself in Acts 20:35 that “IT IS MORE BLESSED TO GIVE THAN TO RECEIVE.” Amen and amen! Jesus said to invite the blind, the deaf, the maimed (disabled), the mentally and physically challenged, the homeless, the poor and needy, the nobodies of society. Amen!!!
So many foolish religious people errantly think that God is going to one day reward them for sending money to idiots like Benny Hinn, T.D. Jakes or Joel Osteen—all shady ministers who profit hundreds-of-millions of dollars from the ministry. The word “minister” means servant. Jesus said that the greatest among you is supposed to be a servant. These televangelist thieves and greedy dogs exploit the Bible to make billions of dollars accumulatively from dumbed-down Americans. They scratch people's itching ears, telling the masses whatever makes them feel good about themselves and keeps them coming back for more.
But you'll never hear them crying aloud against sin (Isaiah 58:1), sounding the alarm bells of judgment (Ecclesiastes 12:14; Romans 1:32; Hebrews 9:27) and warning sinners of the eternal damnation (2nd Thessalonians 1:8-9; Revelation 21:8; John 3:36) to come in the Lake of Fire for ever and ever (Revelation 20-11-15). Today's apostate televangelists will make you feel good all the way into the fires of Hell forever and ever. By the way, that's a demon's favorite activity, that is, making religious people feel comfortable without being born-again by the Spirit of God. They have churchianity without Christianity.
So the Biblical formula to earn rewards in Heaven is to give here on earth to those who cannot recompense us; namely, the poor, the imprisoned, the homeless, the maimed, et cetera. Matthew 19:21, “Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.” Matthew 5:3, “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
Whereas it is normal for unregenerated, unsaved, heathen, people to steal in their greed, selfishness and dishonesty; the holy Bible teaches that as a Christian we ought to labour to spend our hard-earned money so that we may give to OTHERS who have needs. This is a Christlike attitude toward money. The world says to steal and horde for one's self; but the Bible says to earn and give away to OTHERS. Ephesians 4:28, “Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.”
If the worldly wise man in our text verse was willing to leverage everything he owned to buy a field with earthly treasure; then how much more ought we be willing as children of God to leverage everything that we own in this world for the furtherance of the gospel, and to glorify the precious name of Jesus Christ by living for the needs of OTHERS. I'll close by repeating the famous quote from martyred missionary, Jim Elliot, who said: “He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep, to gain that which he cannot lose.”
The World At Our Doorstep!
Every New Testament Church should support missionaries. Since churches are composed of individual born-again believers, then every individual Christian ought to support missionaries as well. We ought to have a GLOBAL, REGIONAL (Acts 13:4; 2nd Corinthians 8:5) and LOCAL vision. Acts 1:8, “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
Revelation 14:11, “And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.”
love God who doesn't love sinners!”
(a quote by Dr. Jack Hyles classic MP3 sermon, “The Happiest Man” (happiest is the man who will not impute sin to others!)
If you believe what the Bible teaches, attend a church that teaches the Bible!
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