Matthew 6:19-24

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

“The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light; but if your eye is unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!

“No one can serve two masters; for a slave will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.” Matthew 6:19-24

Sometimes word order doesn’t matter. I read a great quote yesterday in a news article about what is going on in Venezuela these days. It said “Capitalism means man exploits man. Socialism means just the opposite.” It turns a phrase into a word like “radar.” Forward or backwards, it says the same thing.

That doesn’t always work. The Bible says that “God is love” but that doesn’t mean that “love is God.” God is love but God cannot be reduced to love. And God certainly can’t be reduced to our casual wishy washy emotional definition of such a beautiful word like “love.”

In today’s text, word order matters greatly. Jesus says, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” My sense is that we can read that both as descriptive and as an invitation. Where you put your treasure, your heart will follow. If you want to know what you really love, what you really value, what you really believe in, what you are really passionate about, what really matters to you…then look where you put your money.

Politicians covet those little $5 donations. Once you have given someone your treasure, they become your horse in the race and they know it.

This is also the reason why it is so troublesome to church leaders to realize that 40% or more of the congregational members don’t give any money. It isn’t the money that is the problem – God always provides for what is truly needed – it is the sad realization that the peoples’ hearts are just not in the mission of the church.

As for healthy and unhealthy eyes…that has to do with how we look at things. We can look at life from a purely worldly point of view. There is might make perfect sense to invest our treasure in whatever looks good to us or whatever looks good to whoever else might be looking at us.

But when we look at life from God’s point of view, which is a gift of the Holy Spirit, the whole landscape changes.

Kelley and I went to the eye doctor a couple of weeks ago. We left some treasure behind but being able to see clearly is worth it.

What is today’s Bible reading saying to you?

Let us pray: Dear Lord, again today you are reminding me of stuff I don’t need and things in life that I don’t see. Help us be good stewards of all of the gifts that you give us. That we might be generous rather than greedy, that we might invest our treasures wherever it is that is worthy of our hearts which follow. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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3 Responses to “Matthew 6:19-24”

  1. Rita Wade Says:

    Thank you for helping me to see clearer today and to brush aside the annoying political “advisements”. Sometimes I think their treasures have indeed turned to rust and we’re just experiencing the dust blowing around.

  2. Carolee Says:

    “Where your treasure lies there your heart will be” scripture says.
    And what you choose to treasure is a matter of personal perspective and priorities. Help me to choose to be generous to others and to share all that I have been given; to be ever mindful that my earthly and spiritual gifts are from God.

  3. Sharon Boyd Says:

    Thank you for the reminders. Just a couple of hours ago I was struggling with how much I can put in the offering plate on Sunday. I don’t have a problem going to the grocery store and overloading my cupboards with food even when resources are tight. Why do I worry about giving to the God who takes care of me! Blessings to you and the family, Pastor Nelson

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