Treasures in Heaven
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. (Matthew 6:19-24, NIV)
The tombs of the ancient Egyptian pharaohs have fascinated many for centuries! They were elaborately built, with untold treasures inside. Unfortunately, almost from the moment the pharaohs were laid to rest, grave robbers sought out these tombs, wanting the riches inside for themselves. The discovery of the tomb of King “Tut” Tutankamun in 1923 was significant because it had never been robbed. All the treasure was still stored inside.
The pharaohs believed that the treasure they were buried with would follow them into the afterlife. The more treasure and riches they had buried with them, the easier and better their afterlife would be. But the afterlife does not work like that. We cannot take earthly treasures with us when we die. Earthly treasures and riches remain behind. Instead, we are judged on the condition of our hearts.
Moses could have had a lavish tomb. He could have been celebrated at his death as the son of a pharaoh. He could have lived a life of riches, luxury, and pleasure, having all his needs, wants, and desires fulfilled. Long before Jesus preached His Sermon on the Mount, Moses recognized that his earthly treasures were leaving him unfulfilled. He turned away from the life of luxury and sought out a life following the Lord. Moses chose the riches of heaven over the riches of the world.
Jesus has spent the last several passages in the Sermon on the Mount warning His listeners about seeking the accolades of the world for their acts of service and devotion to the Lord. Our acts of service and the devotion shown to the Lord God should be done out of love for Him, not to receive praise on earth. Jesus had previously warned, and warns again, that those seeking recognition from others for their work will receive no further acknowledgment from the Lord, for they have already received their reward.
When judging our actions, the Lord knows the condition of our heart. He knows if we are doing something out of love for Him or for the earthly reward. We cannot be doing it for both. Yes, sometimes we will receive earthly recognition for our work. That is not wrong, however, we must be careful that it does not become the reason for the work. We should want to honor the Lord with all that we do, no matter the recognition we receive here on earth. It is all about the condition of our heart.
Our treasures in heaven are being stored up by how we act here on earth. What are you truly seeking after? Think of Moses. He had a choice and gave up everything he knew on earth in order to follow the Lord. Can you honestly say you would make the same choice? How are you storing up treasures in Heaven? Are you living a life seeking accolades on earth? Or are you living a life seeking after the Lord’s will?
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