Summary: In Matthew 13, Jesus preached 7 parables that detail the history of His kingdom on this earth. In this parable, He tells of God's great love for believers, so much that He purchases the whole world to redeem a few out of it!
The Treasure Is in a Field
1. Today, we are going to pick apart just one verse of scripture.
2. We may compare several others to it, but mainly we will discuss all the possibilities of the verse at hand.
3. We will look at it from three perspectives.
4. Really all scripture can be viewed from these three perspectives.
I. The Prophetic Interpretation
A. The People to Whom Christ Spoke
1. There are 7 parables pertaining to the kingdom of heaven in Matthew 13.
2. The first 4 were spoken in the presence of many of Jesus’ followers.
3. These last three were shared with His disciples alone (v. 36).
B. The Purpose of the Parable
1. The first 4 had to do with presenting Christ’s kingdom to earth and the world’s perspective of the kingdom of heaven.
2. The last 3 had to do with the reality of Christ’s kingdom as God sees it.
3. The first 4 had to do with corruption in the kingdom and the fact that there would come a time when so many false Christians were considered a part of Christ’s kingdom that it would be nearly impossible for men to tell the difference (parable of the tares).
4. The last 3 had to do with Christ’s love for His kingdom and those that make up that kingdom.
5. The kingdom of heaven is not here fully—we are ambassadors of His kingdom to the earth, but one day His kingdom will literally and visibly come to the earth, and Christ will rule and reign from David’s throne in Jerusalem!
C. The Parts of the Parable
1. The field is the world (v. 38).
2. The treasure is Israel.
a. “Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth (in the parable, the field is the earth) is mine: and ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel” (Exodus 19:5-6).
b. “For the LORD hath chosen Jacob unto himself, and Israel for his peculiar treasure” (Psalm 135:4).
3. The treasure was “hid”.
a. The parable starts with a treasure hid in a field.
b. The Old Testament starts with Israel—hid among the vast and various peoples of the earth.
c. Genesis 1-11 cover 2500 years; 12-50 cover just around 200 years!
d. Where was Abraham when God found him?
e. Was he living in separation from the idolatrous people that surrounded him?
f. No! He was hidden away among them.
g. His father was an idol maker!
h. Jacob spent most of his life away from the Promised Land.
i. Jacob’s children journeyed to Egypt and became enslaved for over 400 years to the Egyptians—they were hid!
4. The man is Christ.
a. In another parable in this chapter, a man is depicted as sowing good seed.
b. Verse 37 identifies the man.
c. Since that is the only point of reference we have, we may conclude that the man that finds the treasure is Christ Himself!
5. The treasure was found.
a. This is a picture of God discovering the faith of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
b. This is a further picture of the children of Israel entering into Canaan victoriously led by Joshua, a type of Jesus—the Hebrew name is the same as Jesus.
6. The treasure was re-hidden!
a. When Israel rejected Christ as their Messiah, Christ rejected them for a time.
b. This is a picture of the dispersion of Israel—for some 2,000 years, the Jews have been dispersed throughout all the earth, having no homeland and being driven from virtually every country except America!
c. They have restored the secular aspect of their country, but their true restoration has not yet taken place—God’s chosen people, Israel will remain hidden until the Millennial Reign of Christ!
7. The entire field was bought!
a. The price was great!
b. Because of God’s great love for His people, both physical Israel and spiritual Israel (all Christians), He gave all that He had to buy the world back from Satan!
c. Adam and Eve lost dominion of the world to Satan because of sin—Christ bought it back!
d. Consider I Timothy 4:10: “For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe.”
d. Consider II Peter 2:1: “But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.”