The Greatest Treasure

Matthew 13:44 “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.”

If we want to understand why this treasure is so valuable, we can start by remembering what it cost.  Our way back into God’s kingdom cost him dearly. Someone once said, God’s grace is free, but it isn’t cheap. Peter’s first letter tell us how much it cost:  “For you know that it was not with perishable things such as gold or silver that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.” 

Our sins offended God in such a way that no human payment would ever be enough. Only the life blood of Jesus himself–God’s one and only Son–was valuable enough to win us a place with God. On the cross he paid by experiencing hell for us. He endured every last drop of God’s anger at sin as our substitute. He opened the way to live in God’s love once again. 

What kind of price can you put on a merely human life? Most people will agree that no price can be set.  This treasure God offers is worth the price of God himself, the life of his own dear Son.

The next thing that makes this treasure so valuable is the gift it gives us. What does it mean to be a part of the kingdom of God? Today it means we have this loving relationship with God. Someday it means that we will live in his presence forever. That is not just any life. It is life without all the nuisances, big or small, that plague us now. 

That life to come knows no pain of rejection. Broken families are not a thing there. Marriages don’t fall apart and relationships are never strained. It’s life without hangnails, pimples, wrinkles, or pot bellies. In God’s presence forever, we will live surrounded by his love, basking in his glory.

What is a life like that worth to you? Consider what you would do just to give your children a few extra days or years of the ordinary, generic life we experience now, with all of its pain and problems.  Can you see yourself mortgaging your house if you needed the money for medical treatment? Donating one of your own organs? Giving your own life? Jesus has won for us the treasure of life without end and life without any kind of suffering. Can you even place a price on that?

This isn’t just a treasure for our future. The man who found the treasure hidden in the field was filled with joy as soon as he found it. God’s kingdom has the same effect. Jesus is our joy today. We find our peace in him in this moment. We know that we live in God’s grace and love. We have the riches of his promises, promises to be with us always, to supply all our needs, to protect us from danger, to answer our prayers, to make everything that ever happens work for our good. 

God has never failed to keep a single promise. Maybe we can’t always understand the promises or see their fulfilment clearly, but we can take hold of these treasures and know they will never fail. They hold their value forever, the greatest treasure we will ever own.

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