Laying treasures in heaven or on earth

Matthew-6-19

The Verse of the Day for January 9, 2015 comes from a familiar section of the Sermon on the Mount, where Jesus Christ provides instruction labeled Teaching about Money and Possessions in Matthew 6:19-21 in the New Living Testament:

“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.

Listen to a reading of the passage by Nicole Johnson

In a parallel discussion about possessions and money, Jesus Christ offers similar words of wisdom in Luke 12:33-34 (NLT):

33 “Sell your possessions and give to those in need. This will store up treasure for you in heaven! And the purses of heaven never get old or develop holes. Your treasure will be safe; no thief can steal it and no moth can destroy it. 34 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.

Colossians 3:1-2 (NLT) also provide instruction as to where believers should direct their thoughts:

Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth.

Martin Luther has rightly noted, “Whatever man loves, that is his god. For he carries it in his heart; he goes about with it night and day; he sleeps and wakes with it, be it what it may: wealth or self, pleasure or renown.”

In reflecting on these passages related to treasures and in heaven vs. treasures on earth, I thought of some of the lyrics to the old gospel song “This World is not My Home”:

O Lord, you know, I have no friend like you.

My treasures are laid up, somewhere beyond the blue.

The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door

And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

Bill and Gloria Gaither and company offer their rendition of this treasured gospel classic:

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