Treasures in Heaven
Mt 6:19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. 22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! 24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. (NKJV)
Jesus is teaching the Sermon on the Mount. In teaching from a mountain He is following in the footsteps of His Father who also taught Moses from a mountain, Mount Sinai.
Jesus instructs us to not store up treasures on earth, but rather to store up treasures in Heaven (vv. 19a, 20a). Earthly treasures can be destroyed by “moths and vermin”, or stolen by “thieves” (vv. 19b). But Heavenly treasures cannot be destroyed (v. 20b). Heavenly treasures are given to us by God, Himself, and He preserves them for us.
The words “earthly treasures” refers to what we hold as most valuable to us. For example we might hold most valuable the earthly treasure of money. The words “Heavenly treasures” refers to the rewards Christians receive in Heaven for the good they do on earth. Our good works store up treasures for us in Heaven.
Where our treasure is, our heart will follow (v. 21). If our treasure is in earthly things our heart will be focused on earthly matters. However, if our treasure is in Heavenly things our heart will be focused on Heavenly matters, the kingdom of God.
In other words, wherever we focus tells the shape of our heart. If our focus is “healthy”, on the things of God, our “whole body will be full of light”, full of God (v. 22). But if our focus is “unhealthy”, on the things of this world, our “whole body will be full of darkness”, full of Satan (v. 23a). Satan rules in the hearts of those who are consumed by the things of the world. They have a “great darkness” in their hearts (v. 23b).
“No one can serve two masters” (v. 24a). We will love one and hate the other (v. 24b), or we will be devoted to one and despise the other (v. 24c). We “cannot serve both God and money”, things of this world (v. 24d). We must make a choice. I choose God.
Moving has to be one of the most unpleasant things we do. Hopefully, we have moved for the last time. As we unpacked from our last move we found a somewhat valuable rug that had been infested by moths. Well, now it’s not so valuable.
We cannot hold on to things of this world. If you have ever had a bad investment, a foreclosure, valuables stolen or destroyed, even a door ding on your new car, you know what I mean.
Jesus is saying in this passage that we should not invest our lives in obtaining things. Whoever dies with the most toys is just that, dead. He won’t get to take those toys with him. So what does he have to show for his life on this earth?
I once heard that if we look at our checkbooks we will know where our heart lies. In other words, what we spend our money on defines who we are. Of course, the younger generation doesn’t know what a checkbook is, so I guess that’s not such a good example now.
There are many ways to store up treasures in Heaven. We are rewarded in Heaven for the good we do on earth. When we please God, we can hear a “ka-ching” in Heaven as God makes a deposit in our Heavenly cash register.
The bottom line is that Jesus wants us to invest in things eternal. He wants us to store up our treasures in Heaven. Since FedEx does not deliver to Heaven, He wants us to invest in earthly ministries that are doing his work, like this one! Or, your local church. Those are the best investments, because those are the investments that last forever!
Online Bible Commentary