On Faith: Find what your treasures are
By: Pastor Scott Nelson, First Baptist Church, Two Harbors, Lake County News Chronicle
Here is a voice mail greeting from one university student who had developed a rather inconsistent view of money: “Hi. This is John. If this is the telephone company, I already sent the money. If this is my parents, please send me money. If you are my financial aid officer, you didn’t lend me enough money. If you are one of my friends, you owe me money. If you are a single female, don’t worry; I have plenty of money. Please leave a message accordingly after the beep.”
College students these days are facing ever-increasing, amazingly large tuition bills. I remember when I attended a private liberal arts college in the Twin Cities area and the cost crossed over the $10,000 mark for the year (tuition, books, room and board included). I thought, “How can these prices keep going up?” But they have continued to go up with no signs of reversing the trend. And yet, we must remember, life is not all about money.
Revelation 21:21 says that the streets in the New Jerusalem will be paved with gold. The point of the Apostle John’s description is to show the glory of the heavenly city and more importantly, the glory of the God who resides there. But it also speaks to the relative lack of value of the things that we treasure here on earth. Gold, one of our most prized possessions, is pavement in heaven.
What really matters? What do you treasure?
It is so easy to put your hope in the things of this world. To trust in your retirement account or the security of your bank account. It is also easy to think that if we can just get rich, we’ll be truly happy.
Benjamin Franklin said, “Money never made a man happy yet, nor will it. The more a man has, the more he wants. Instead of filling a vacuum, it makes one.” Think of the volatility of the stock market of late. Is it worthy of your trust?
In Matthew 6:19-21 Jesus says: “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven where moth and rust do not destroy and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
This passage contrasts two types of treasure: that which is on earth and is temporary and unsatisfying, and that which is heavenly and brings lasting peace and joy.
Billionaire Ted Turner was quoted in The Wittenburg Door (Mar/Apr 1996, p. 38) as saying, “Millions don’t count for much anymore ... According to Jesus Christ, money is worthless. It won’t buy you anything in heaven if there is one. And it might not even get you in.”
Actually, according to Jesus, there is a heaven and money won’t have anything to do with whether or not we get in. The entrance fee was paid by Jesus Christ as he died on the cross bearing your sin and mine. He took our punishment. The only way into eternity with our holy God is by receiving the amazing gift of grace offered by Jesus.
So don’t put your faith in something as fleeting as money. Put your faith in the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who loved us and died for us “while we were still sinners...” (Romans 5:8).
He is the only one to trust with your eternity.