Sermons

Summary: Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal

Introduction

A. When the wealthy businessman choked on a fish bone at a restaurant, he was fortunate that a doctor was seated at a nearby table. Springing up, the doctor skillfully removed the bone and saved the man's life. As soon as the fellow had calmed himself and could talk again, he thanked the surgeon enthusiastically and offered to pay him for his services. "Just name the fee," he croaked gratefully. "Okay," replied the doctor. "How about half of what you'd have offered when the bone was still stuck in your throat?"

B. Introduction:

1. Where are our thoughts?

a. What do we think about?

b. Are our thoughts on earth or on heaven?

c. Is our mind on earthly things or on God?

d. What are we seeking, the things of the earth or the things of heaven?

e. Where is our heart focused, on earth or focused on heaven?

f. The concern of Christ in this passage is money, possessions, and material things.

g. His concern is that we guard against centering our lives around houses, furnishings, cars, lands, buildings, stocks, all the things that make up security and wealth on this earth.

h. The reason is simply understood: nothing on this earth is secure and lasting.

i. It is aging, decaying, and wasting away.

j. It is all corruptible and temporal.

k. What Christ wants is for us to center our lives around Him and heaven, for everything about Himself and heaven is life and security.

l. It is all permanent and eternal.

m. To stir our thinking He gives us a lesson on wealth and materialism.

n. We can out line this passage as follows:

(1) A contrast: about two kinds of riches (v. 19-20).

(2) A warning: about two kinds of hearts (v.21-23).

(3) A choice: about two kinds of masters (v.24)

(a) Lets begin by turning to Matthew 6:19 - 20

II. Body

A. A contrast: about two kinds of riches

Matthew 6:19-20 (NKJV)

"Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; {20} "but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal

1. There are earthly riches

a. here are things on earth that men desire

b. Christ calls these earthly riches and treasures

c. Earthly riches would be such things as clothes, cars, jewelry, toys, houses, buildings, furnishings, pleasure, fame, power, profession, property, money; anything that dominates a person's Mind and spirit and holds it fast to this earth

2. A treasure is that which has value and is worth something to someone

a. Men take things and ascribe value to them

(1) It may be stones (diamonds)

(2) Or rocks and dust (gold or silver)

(3) Or money (paper and metal)

(4) Or land (property)

(5) Or wood

(a) Metal

(b) Dirt

(c) Chemical

(d) And fabric (buildings)

(6) Or influence (power)

(7) Or the attention of people (fame)

3. Christ says three things about earthly riches that are of critical importance to both the believer and the unbeliever

a. First, do not lay up for yourselves earthly riches (material possessions)

(1) Christ says that a person is not to focus his life on earthly things, not to set his eyes and mind and energy and effort on such passing treasures

(2) Riches do exist

(a) Their locality is clearly stated

(b) There is wealth both on earth and in heaven

(3) It is easier to covet earthly things than heavenly things for four reasons.

(a) They can be seen and handled

(b) They are sought by most people, and other people influence us

i) A person is either worldly minded or heavenly minded

(c) They are to varying degrees necessary for life

(d) They are present, ever before us, and can be possessed right now

(4) Earthly riches are corruptible

(a) Something terrible happens to everything on earth

(b) Everything ages, dies, deteriorates, and decays

(c) Things are on the earth only for a brief time, and then they are no more.

(d) Everything has the seed of corruption within it

(e) Earthly riches are insecure

i) Turn to 1 Timothy 6:7

(f) The things on earth are insecure for three reasons

i) They can be stolen or eaten up

ii) They do not last; they waste away

iii) And a person cannot take a single thing with him when he passes from this world.

1 Timothy 6:7 (NKJV)

For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.

4. Thing about these four lessons:

a. Wealth is sought, and it is sought by many

(1) What is often forgotten is this: every bit of wealth is held by someone

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