Treasures and possessions have become synonymous with status and standing. We see people who need the newest iPhone, the best car, and the need to show it off to others. We are tempted to wear the most expensive clothing and jewelry in an effort to put our wealth on full display. In certain circles, it seems almost as if money is what defines a person’s sense of worth which only leads to people pursuing money and wealth endlessly. Greed and putting that greed on full display runs rampant with no amount ever being enough to satisfy the needs of the person. Everything can always look more decadent, more lavish, and more extravagant. Yet it is precisely this earthly stockpiling which only leaves a person feeling empty. For however much we seek to increase our standing through the crown of financial gain, ultimately, the wealth and gold will find its end.
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
– Matthew 6:19-21, NIV
As with most crowns, in and of themselves, they are not bad. There are some circles that would attempt to guilt any Christian who has any form of wealth. Similarly, there are others that would claim that wealth is the sign of God’s blessing and those who do not have it are outside of the will of God. Each is miserably wrong. The problem does not come from the wealth itself but in its pursuit.
The Crown of Treasure
People have spent their whole life pursuing treasure as the pinnacle of their existence. They boast in their achievements and what they have been able to accomplish and earn. Yet, their lives, for all the accouterments they have amassed, still remain empty. Treasures have become their idol that they pursue endlessly day in and day out. Money can so quickly turn to an idol and the problem with idols is that they cannot remain. Every idol has been defeated by One, True God who sent His Son to die for our sins. The crown of treasure has already been stripped of its glory and power.
The problem with the crown of treasure is that, one day, the crown will fall from our heads. Either we will remove the crown and lay it before the throne of God or the crown will be removed from us. Everyone dies. No one takes their treasures with them. When we seek validation by our possession, by the clothes we wear, by the outward image we present, or any exterior feature, we will fail. Possessions and riches cannot validate a person’s existence, only complicate it. When our life goal becomes the amassing of treasures, we will die having received our reward already. But, when our life goal is to lay down our treasures for the Lord, we step into eternity in eager expectation of a true treasure.
True Treasure Stored In Heaven
Treasure only has its meaning when it is placed before the Throne of Heaven at the feet of God. Compared to the treasure of everlasting life that God offers, the earthly treasures will ultimately be unable to meet the goal of satisfying our soul. We all have a longing for success and meaning and value. It is these things that God offers and that God alone can provide.
Where we looked for validation in treasure, image, and exterior features, true meaning and validation can only come from God. For however much treasure and gold we accumulate, when compared to the richness of heaven, there will be no comparison. Revelation 21 tells us that the streets are paved with gold. Gold is their gravel. Just as we do not value gravel, gold will ultimately find itself to be meaningless compared to the beauty and glory of creation.
Read Matthew 6:19-24 and Matthew 19:16-24
- What are some of the treasures that you are most tempted to chase after them? They do not have to be money.
- What makes the earthly treasures so appealing? Why do we feel the need to chase after it?
- What are some of the benefits of storing up treasures in heaven instead of treasures on earth? How do the two compare?
- What are the rewards that heaven has to offer?
- What does it mean to store up treasures in heaven? How do we do this?