Earthly Treasure

42 posts

The First Shall Be Last

This is a short story of two young men with two radically different views of the same treasure. One thought he could not live without the treasure and one who knew could not live with it. This is the choice your teenagers face: should they live for what they can see or for what they can’t see? Moses, as a young man, was offered all the treasures of ancient Egypt. They were the best his world had to offer. Power, possessions, prestige — they were all his. All he had to do was be passive and enjoy the providential circumstances that were literally dropped in his lap. But he said no to all of that. Instead he chose disgrace for […]

Would You Go To Church If…

Would you go to church if: you couldn’t go to the mountains, you couldn’t go to the beach, you couldn’t go on vacation, if the weather is not too bad, if your favorite team is not playing on TV, if you don’t have tickets to see your favorite team play, if this weren’t your only chance to catch an important film or fine arts performance, if the weather is too rainy for a hike or picnic, if you weren’t too tired, if you weren’t feeling bad, if you didn’t have yard work to do, if you didn’t have an important book to finish, if things were going better at work, if you didn’t feel so far from God, if you […]

The Passionate Pursuit of God

Is God distant, maybe not as close as you would like? Is he an idea, a fleeting abstraction that when you use his name it sounds hollow? When you talk to your kids about goodness of God, do they either literally or figuratively roll their eyes? Is the idea of showing Christ to those you an illusive dream? So how do we clear the vision? How can we make God vibrant in our own eyes — so vibrant that our kids know we are genuinely compelled by our love for him? Solomon helps bring things into sharper focus. He says to find intimate knowledge of God, you must be passionately committed to seeking him, you must be all in. In […]

Greed Obscures Reality

A man once came to Jesus and asked him to settle a dispute between him and his brother. But instead of resolving things as the man had wished, Jesus turned the conversation in a completely different direction. He chose to address the more immediate issue of greed. As always happens when Jesus addresses the heart, our eyes are opened so that our understanding about something we thought we understood is radically changed. We don’t think of greed as wanting make sure that we are treated fairly. We don’t consider ourselves greedy when we make financial security our highest priority. But Jesus does! Greed is easy for us to point out in others: someone reaching for that extra helping of food, […]

Sold Out for Christ

A man was walking in a field and came across something that was buried in the ground. In a moment his life changed forever. What he found caused him to immediately sell all of his personal possessions and then buy this field with its great treasure. He sold out to gain the treasure. People sell out for treasure all time. The question is, how valuable is that treasure? We have just witnessed the Olympic spectacle. There are countless stories of people selling out to win the gold. What about you? What are you sold out for? What do your children think is your greatest treasure? Would they say it is knowing Christ, based on the way that you talk and the […]

Investing In Landfills

Gold and precious stones are easy to acquire. All you need is money.  Thus, the rich, the famous, the sports elite gather gold and glittering jewelry for all to see. For the ordinary rich and those who want to be rich, they are told to pad their retirement accounts with gold and silver. In the midst of the dazzling display of wealth you can hear the words of success and the worship of created things. But for all this wealth, what is rarely heard are words that make sense of life. The wonders of man are easily obtained. Look at our culture. Material wealth abounds, even in the face of poverty. Money, either owned or borrowed will provide the desires […]

What will you live for in 2016?

Every December 31st, we become time conscious. But time is slippery, temporary. What will our time be like this next year? News shows, books, internet articles, friends tell us there is much to worry about in 2016: terrorists, the elections, the economy, the climate, social unrest. We are told any one of these things may impact the quality of life and how long we may live. But as Paul says, don’t focus on what is temporary, but focus on eternity.  Faith has to do with eternity. This means that faith is rooted not in time and what happens in time. Faith is rooted in the person and character of God! Faith is not primarily about everything working out. Faith is […]

Greed & Christmas

With Christmas presents comes Christmas squabbles. All of the challenging things your remember from last Christmas, but over the course of 364 days have somehow managed to forget, are back. Topics like:time of possession, present hoarding, and ownership disputes, once again take center stage. Why? Greed. Ouch! Greed is a pretty strong word. Do we have to go there? Actually, we do. Sin is deceitful. Greed can masquerade as a desire for justice or fair play. But greed is when you want something for yourself without caring for someone else. Luke tells of an encounter Jesus had with a greedy person. A man from the crowd asked Jesus to settle an inheritance dispute with his brother. Christ ignored the who, what, […]

Heaven: God’s gift

It is the Gift which saves man from himself. The gift of heaven is a gift anticipated with trembling, but received with peace. It is a gift seldom planned for, but is given according to the most loving of plans. It is a gift that exposes our faith, but is given in faithfulness. It is a gift that we are tempted to exchange for the treasures of this life. It is a gift looked upon with doubt, but, once given, removes all doubt. It is a gift we wanted to avoid, but then embraced with gratitude. It is a gift painful to contemplate, but then radically, wonderfully heals. It is a gift dreaded by the foolish, but longed for by the […]

Jesus talks about the stock market

Two thousand years ago Jesus had important counsel about your savings. He challenged a rich, successful farmer not to think that earthly savings provided security. He went on to say that there is treasure that will never fail, that cannot be stolen or destroyed. Jesus did not condemn the acquiring of physical wealth, but he did say that there is treasure that is superior to what can gained by earthly means. He urged his followers to have purses that will never wear out. The Apostle Paul echoed Christ’s words when he warned in I Timothy 6 that wealth is uncertain, so don’t place your hopes on earthly treasure. Global markets are losing billions of dollars in value. Perhaps the markets […]