Faith Baptist Church
4258 Botetourt Road
Fincastle, Virginia 24090
(540) 473-2325

Evaluating Our Greatest Treasure

Matthew 6:19-24

Treasures take on many forms. For some it is family. For others it is the acquisition of wealth and for others it is fame and praise. But for the believer we must focus on a different kind of treasure. Our treasure, as it is for others, is the object closest to our hearts. Nothing could be closer to us, we say, than our family, but one thing must be even closer. Yes, it is our relationship with God. God is the One Treasure that puts all treasures into perspective. Through God we see the meaning of life and the true value of all things, including family. God would have us see all things from his viewpoint because he knows all things as he has seen all things. Ps.19:8 “The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.”

Ps.119:18 “Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.”

God’s word must become the prism with which we look through as we view our life and our values. You - - - - - - - God’s Word ---------Your Life & Values

Humanism would have us see things from man’s viewpoint only. The doctrine of humanism declares that man sets his own priorities and values strictly apart from God. Looking through the prism of human viewpoint only gives to us human experience in understanding the past and predicting the future. It only gives to us the vantage point of human philosophy. Sadly enough, Christianity is offering the masses a philosophy of life apart from God’s viewpoint. Many Pastors and Christian conference speakers offer a philosophy that seeks social answers and social action for solving today’s problems rather than addressing the real problem of personal sin and the sinners need to be saved. These born again saints need a life of learning God’s word and a life serving God and seeing that our real hope is in the life to come. The Church has been called to save and edify souls, not the planet as it is already scheduled for destruction, II Pet.3:10 “ But the day of the Lord [judgment] will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat; the earth also, and the works that are in it, shall be burned up.”

Apart from God human viewpoint only offers a hope that ends when our life ends. Human experience and human philosophy can only take us so far, but what about the eternal state? God’s wisdom and knowledge manifests God’s philosophy of life and his is so much higher than ours. Jesus Christ saw the humanistic philosophy of the rich young ruler who would not give up his material possessions to follow him. He would not forsake his earthly treasures to believe and trust in the treasure of the Son of God. The rich fool who amassed a great storage of grain to sell, instead of sharing it, tore down his old barns and built bigger barns thinking amassing wealth was all there is to life, that this wealth would make him happy and secure. He thought to himself “I will party on forever”, and yet his life on earth ran out and he had lost his very own soul, Lk.12:16-21. His soul saw only through the eyes of man and not God’s eyes.

The Pharisees would not give up the acclaim and praise of men to believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God. They treasured the power they held as they lorded over people, Matt.6:1-5. They did not see themselves as sinners bound for hell in need of the Redeemer. They treasured the praises of men thinking they have God’s praise to. How foolish.

Many religious people do great works thinking these works will earn them eternal rewards, and yet they are wrong. Their works are simply a substitute for the finished work of Christ on the cross, a Christ they will not accept as their Savior.

Jesus Christ also said in Matthew 10:34-37, that he must be treasured above our own family. Some would say our Lord had a one track mind and in a sense they would be correct. His service and teaching was given in order to glorify the Father in heaven, and he called on men to duplicate his mission of bringing honor and glory to the Father.

To put any person or possession above the glory of the Father amounts to idolatry. The Father does not wish to have our possessions nor come between us and our family. He does not prohibit us from being recognized for our accomplishment, (see Romans 13:7), however, he does take offense when we put these things above him.

On the subject of materialism our Lord is very clear. We cannot serve God and money, (see Matthew 6:24). With money we can acquire great wealth and power and influence. We can acquire a pseudo sense of independence as we falsely erect an attitude of self-sufficiency. We can quickly assume we are secure in our plans and in our pursuits. We can do this to the point that we forget God, even as Christians, (see Deuteronomy 8:11-18).

The drawing affect of materialism is very strong. It feeds on the temporal often without thought of the eternal consequences. The Bible calls this thinking covetousness and it is prohibited. Material possessions are not wrong in and of themselves and the Bible never prohibits us from having and owning property. This is where Marxism misunderstands Christianity. In Marxism material ownership by the general public is denounced as people are supposedly drawn to personal wealth instead of what is best for the State. Marxism as a philosophy is "unity through poverty", a poverty level that State establishes. God, to the Marxist, either does not exist or he has no say in whether a person finds enjoyment in things. Materialism and capitalism are not the same. Capitalism is simply a system of supply and demand whereby those who supply make a profit by those who demand. This is encouraged as noted by the industrious wife of Proverbs 31:10-31.

To conclude this letter I simply want all of us to become more aware of our own attitudes toward things and how they can drive a wedge between us and God. Let's be aware of how we see life and how we put value on things and what value we put on people. Do we se through biblical eyes or do we see through the world's eyes? There is a great difference between the two. What do you treasure most in your heart? What you and I treasure is what you and I will pursue.

Be good to your family, be faithful to your Savior, and all things pertaining to great treasure and meaning will find you. When we stop measuring our worth and purpose in life by how much we have, and start measuring our worth and purpose by Who has us, then we will find peace.

The Pastor
February 2007