Summary: Treasure seekers who seek first the kingdom of God find His kingdom to be more than they could ever imagine. When filled by God, they are ready to share out of the abundance of what they have received.
I hope the kids are excited about this year’s VBS. It is called Treasure Cove and the goal is to inspire kids to be treasure seekers, not for the treasures this world has to offer, but for the treasure that will never spoil or rot – an intimate relationship with the Lord, Jesus Christ.
This is the real goal that each of us should be pursuing with all of our heart and strength. But the demands of living in the modern world can sometimes rob us of our devotion to Christ. Lee Strobel, a great evangelist of our day, once wrote about the decade of the 90’s:
“If you were really a person of the 90’s you felt life whizzing past you at 90 miles an hour. You worked 90 hours a week and you still had 90 items on your to-do list. You were on a 90 calorie a day diet because you looked 90 pounds overweight in your swim suit. You had 90 bills to pay but you were already $90 overdrawn in your bank account. You are still paying $90 a month on your student loan, but now you are starting to worry about where you are going to get $90,000 to pay for your child’s college education. You have 90 channels of cable TV and still can’t find anything to watch. . . . and you think foolishly that everything would just be fine if you could find a job that pays $90,000 a year.”
Is there a promise of a better future? Does there seem to be any reason to hope for tomorrow? The answer to that question depends greatly on what you are seeking. If you are seeking the things this world has to offer, you will continually be frustrated and discouraged at what little you have. But if you are seeking a different kind of treasure, then it is possible to live a life of contentment and peace, full of joy and hope in a bright future. So take a moment with me this morning and evaluate your heart:
“What treasure are you really seeking out of life?
Jesus has been instructing His disciples in the Sermon on the Mount about life in the Kingdom of God. He has described a life of devotion and purity of heart. He has taught them how to pray, and now He addresses the focus of their life. He knows that life in Israel is difficult. They are living under Roman rule. Many of them are living below the poverty level. Most are hungry and desperate for a touch from heaven. But would they be any happier if they had all of the wealth of Herod? Would their lives be any more satisfying if they had all the modern conveniences and pleasures we take for granted in our modern culture? Is that the most important thing, or is there a better treasure for them? And so, Jesus begins to describe for them life in the Kingdom of God. In fact over 80 times in the Gospels He refers to this Kingdom. A popular saying in Jewish culture during the day of Christ was this:
“Take upon yourself the Yoke of God’s rule”
The peasants of Palestine were living under the Yoke of Rome. They felt enslaved, but Jesus understands where true freedom and happiness can be found. Jesus knowing this encourages His followers: “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and meek.”
God is building His Kingdom and He promises the gates of Hell will not prevail against it. He looks for men, women, boys and girls who are willing to “Seek first His Kingdom”! Are you a person who is willing to do that?
Turn with me to Matthew 6:19-34
"Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where they can be eaten by moths and get rusty, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where they will never become moth-eaten or rusty and where they will be safe from thieves. Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be.
"Your eye is a lamp for your body. A pure eye lets sunshine into your soul. But an evil eye shuts out the light and plunges you into darkness. If the light you think you have is really darkness, how deep that darkness will be!
"No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
"So I tell you, don’t worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food, drink, and clothes. Doesn’t life consist of more than food and clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t need to plant or harvest or put food in barns because your heavenly Father feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than they are. Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? Of course not.