Contributors to this passage

Matthew 6: 19-21

Monday

I guess it's teaching me that all things I have on earth is temporary.

So why chase after things that last only for a little while. Does it mean we should not chase after material things? It's just hard not to do that... knowing that I am responsible for the security of my family's future.

Anyway, we are also here on earth temporary before we pass on...so why not?

What are my treasures on earth?

As human beings, we always strife for better things...we want a good life, respect, power, etc...all these comes when you have money.

But then again, money doesn't last forever unless you dedicate your life to make money...will be very tiring, huh? No time for anything/anyone else.

Shen responding to:

"As human beings, we always strive for better things...we want a good life, respect, power, etc...all these comes when you have money."

Sorry ? had to correct the spelling error. "Strife" ? hardships as opposed to "strive" ? endeavour. I believe it was the latter meaning that was implied? Money = good life, respect and power? Well, doesn't that depend on what you define as good life, respect and power? I think I have a good life, but I'm not exactly money-worry-free. I think I have the respect of my friends and I know I have power over certain people in my life because of the relationship I have with them. None of these required having money to achieve. But then, it depends to what level you are looking for, doesn't it? Then again, would you really want respect and power given to you because you had money? I don't think I would. And I don't think God wants us to focus on that either. See Matthew 19:23-24.

Mat 19:23 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. Mat 19:24 And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

Perhaps rich is not what is implied here, but a lot of the things that is often associated with being rich? "Money is the root of all evil" ? Because once you have it, you tend to want more. That's where the habits of gambling start and how people fall into the gambling trap. It feeds on their greed.

But I digress? "Good life" is open to interpretation. When I think about having a "good life", I think about having a jolly time enjoying myself, enjoying what I do, enjoying the people that I am with. I don't equate that with money. But perhaps you're looking at "good life" from the point of view of having the money to pay off your house, send your kids to good schools, etc. Which I agree that you should, but again, it comes down to that "moderation" thing.

For instance, I could choose to stay in my current job and get my current pay, but I don't really like my current job. I could move on to another job which I think would be more interesting, have better development of certain aspects of my career growth that I want, BUT less pay. If it were just a simple decision like that, I would just say, take the new job. But there are bills to pay and a certain standard of living that I have been used to up until now. It will be a struggle to live on the pay of the new job. Suddenly money which has never been important to me takes on a new meaning. As much as I hate to admit it because I used to be asked why I left dentistry when it was such a good income earner for a miserable paying job that I have now. And yet, this so-called miserable paying job actually pays me more than what I'm planning to go into. It seems like I am moving from better to worse each time?

At what cost? I don't have a family to worry about; I don't have a mortgage to pay or any other big commitments that eat into my life. I keep trying to remember that there are whole families out there that live on less than what I earn. I guess you just have to prioritise what you really want. I have seen rich kids who get everything they want and not understand the value of money or what it means to struggle. I think that if you can put a roof over the heads of your family, educate them and bring them up to be fearful of God and be good people, I think you have done exceedingly well. They don't need to have gone to Scotch or PCL or Harvard or Yale.

David's response:

The impression I get when I read the text is that Jesus is telling us where we should invest our resources. It is not "don't chase after money/material things" - as in these things are BAD and the pursuit of these things are "meaningless". These things are useful, important and even necessary. But don't mistake them for treasure!

So, taking your own words "I am responsible for the security of my family's future", I would say that your treasure is your family. And you are willing to work, sweat and spend your resources for their security. This is great!

So, what will you be willing to do for their "heavenly" security, for their happiness, for their growth in maturity, for their development?

 

Tuesday

What's so good about having a lot of money but no time to really enjoy it?

So is God teaching me to stop, slow down and see that earthly treasures are not what they seem to be? If I keep all our treasures on earth, I'll never get to be with God because my heart will be where my treasure is.

It's a constant struggle to not store treasure on earth. I guess I must let go of my life... of the treasures that I hold dear and trust whole heartedly in God for security.

An equation comes to mind: Store treasures in heaven = heart being in the right place = being with God = a chance to know Him better = complete trust in Him.

How do I learn to store treasures in heaven? What are heavenly treasures then?

Yes, almost everybody has come to this question. There are clues here but more details are found in the preceding verses as well as the verses following after.

 

Wednesday

How to store up heavenly treasures:

Now a new thought comes to mind...will one person be 'richer' than another in heaven? Wouldn't that be a nice motivation for us to work hard and store up heavenly treasures that last forever...trying to outdo each other on earth.

Then the world would indeed be a better place because almost everybody doing what God teaches...and there's no treasure on earth for the moth and rust to consume and the thieves will be out of a job.

Yes!

And yes, I think that there are "distinctions" in heaven, according to your works. After all remember 1 Cor 3: 13-15, where it talks about the test of a person's work. I suspect though that the "riches" is seen in the person, rather than in external forms.

And we should realize that the list of "How to store up heavenly treasure" is not exhaustive but they give us an idea of what we need to do.

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